Some weeks we find comics that look funny and end up being just okay. Other times we get some that knock us out of the water. Most of the time we find some that have titles that make me laugh out loud and the content doesn’t matter. This is just a preface because there’s a comic called “The Greatest Estate Developer” and no amount of “Morgana and Oz” or “Dr. Frost” can stop me from thinking how incredibly that concept is ridiculous.
All of this, and a reminder that is our final edition of 2021, in this issue of The Webcomics Weekly. See you in 2022!
‘White Night’ (1) – (Case Closed)
By Jongbeom Lee
Reviewed by Elias Rosner
Season 3 of “Dr. Frost” concludes with “White Night,” summing up all of the season’s lingering questions and providing one final case for us to sink our teeth into. As with most cases this season, the mystery aspect isn’t what happened or will he find out in time, but “Can Gel Grow Up” alongside solving personal issues and individual conflicts. So it makes sense that Professor Fater and the relationship with his father is the focus of this arc. We learn that it was a rocky relationship due to his father’s failures and, in the end, the two never reconcile but Fater gets away with it.
This is one of the greatest strengths of Lee’s writing and his commitment to rooting drama in as much reality as possible. Not everyone is able to have a clean ending with their parents, and not all parents are caring. Fater’s father did not hide a source of love or was unable to say how proud he was of Fater; he was a bitter man who couldn’t see his son for who he was and what he wanted to do, was actively afraid and ashamed of this freedom he had never allowed himself to have, and, until in the end, Fater couldn’t see it either. He chased her approval, never internalizing how it would never come. It’s a message we don’t see often. It’s so rare in fact, the comic goes out of its way to point it out.
And so, that’s where we end Frost’s time in the protection room. He was primarily an observer in this case, offering only nominal confrontation and doing no detective work. Instead, his sections focus on his fear of leaving protective duty and why it all happened. It all ends with a meeting we’ve been waiting for since the beginning of the season: Frost’s friends who come to visit us. I got a little misty-eyed when Seon and co. showed up but Lee then opened the aqueducts with Seonga appearing. What a damn effective scene. So effective, in fact, that I didn’t see the Season 3 finale twist coming.
It’s become a cliché to have a piece of media time while dreaming or with a character in a coma. It could be equated to “Dr. Frost”, but I refuse to do so. in one form or another, just in the past rather than the present. While none of the cases were ‘real’, they were, as I said before, symbolic of the kind of lessons Frost had to learn in a much more direct way than in previous seasons.This happening in his subconscious doesn’t negate Frost’s journey as it was an emotional journey that will continue to move forward.
It also explains inconsistencies like Nurse Yoon looking suspiciously like Seonga or the kid never having his own arc or why Frost would have put himself in the room in the first place given the foul play involved at the end of season 2 Or why he was given the kind of leeway he had in regards to other patients by the doctor, considering, well, he himself is a patient there and even with “Dr. Frost’s freedoms always seemed a little weird to me. It’s not the resolution I expected, but it’s one that’s well-planned, well-executed, and has me excited for Season 4, which we’re about to begin…in the new year.
The largest real estate developer
Original story by BK_Moon
Adapted by Lee Hyunmin
Illustrated by Kim Hyunsoo
Reviewed by Michael Mazzzacane
Did I choose “The Biggest Real Estate Developer” because it’s a nonsense name? Yes. Was I expecting this to be a self-aware isekai that again uses video game conventions to explain the overall quest structure of the series? No. They’re two generic, formal conventions that I’m a bit tired of, and yet to see them mixed together in this way is slightly intriguing. Everything else is technically fine if a bit uninspired. Kim Hyunsoo’s art is well composed and mixes lush, detailed paneling with excessive cartooning for effect. They draw pretty generic anime boys very well. The idyllic pastoral setting of Western Europe gives the impression of straight out of Poldark. If you’re not so bored by these conventions, “The Biggest Real Estate Developer” should be worth a look.
Where “The Greatest Estate Developer” finds much-needed leeway is in self-awareness. The video game aesthetic with its techno sheen is a nice juxtaposition to the pomp and circumstance of the rest of the setting. It’s strewn all over the place but at its best in these early episodes as an entire cityscape manifesto. This awareness of gameplay mechanics also gives our protagonist Suho Kim/Lloyd Frontera an effectively annoying edge. He treats it like a game and not a reality, which threatens to turn him into a murderous tramp. This threat is at the heart of this series, if this guy can become a better person. It’s an emotional hook that I didn’t expect at the start of this tape and yet it’s kind of inside me.
“The Greatest Real Estate Developer” may not be for anyone other than fans of the genre or those unfamiliar with it, but there’s a spark of something there. Not everything surrounding it stands out from the litany of similar titles on webtoon, but at its heart there are some existential questions worth at least pondering.
Morgana and Oz
Updates on Mondays
Written by Miyuli
Reviewed by Mel Lake
Just a few weeks ago I reviewed a comic where a witch and a vampire got away, robbing banks and doing magic while becoming friends. This week I have a review of a comic where a family of witches and a clan of vampires are hereditary enemies! Corn! Sparks fly when an unfortunate witch meets her vampire counterpart. Witches and vampires are all the rage these days on webtoon and as a big fan of vampire stories, I’m not complaining. (Side note: Today also saw the passing of Anne Rice, who brought the romantic antihero vampire character into pop culture consciousness and gave the world Lestat, the original angsty goth vampire lothario. RIP .)
“Morgan and Oz” begins with a family of witches trying to throw a feast without magic and having trouble with it. Witch diplomacy is not easy! Especially when the guests of honor are vampires your family has been supposed to torment for generations. The titular Morgana, a teenage witch who doesn’t seem very good at spellcasting, accidentally incinerates her evening dress. This leads her to meet Oz, a vampire who is so low on the totem pole, from a vampire perspective, that he is on the outside acting as a stand-in for his vampire boss. When tensions boil over, Morgana and Oz, though not arguing like their respective families, are caught up in the fray. At the end of the third episode, which is the last one available right now, Oz is accidentally turned into a cat. The adventures of a witch and a cat-vampire could follow. Who knows?
The illustrations in this series are exactly the kind of cute webtoon manga style you’d expect from a cute supernatural romance. Facial expressions are enhanced and backgrounds are simple but effective. The characters are distinct from each other, mainly due to the fact that the witch family all wear a stereotypical witch costume while the vampires look like extras from vampire movies, but all different. Oz, the main vampire character, seems to be auditioning for a role in lost boys and didn’t realize it wasn’t 1987 yet.
Although there are not many episodes available yet, this series looks cute and promising. I said cute a couple of times, because, well, it’s a cute comic. There are cute witches and cute magic spells and it looks like it will be a cute story. If supernatural encounters are your thing, this one may be worth following.