The Webcomics Weekly is back in your life. This week our webcomic wranglers are taking a trip to “Elephant Town” which now has a new website! Meanwhile, we’re stopping in hell for the latest “Lore Olympus” hot gos. And it’s time for team building exercises in “Les Uniques”.
city of elephants
Updates: Weekly for now
By Danielle Corset
Reviewed by Elias Rosner
It’s been a hot second since I last rewatched “Elephant Town.” You might be wondering why I’m only getting to Chapter 2 now and it’s because ‘Elephant Town’ now has a full-fledged website! No more stupid Patreon drive for these updates. Obviously, for the most recent serialization, you have to be a patron or follow Danielle, but for readers new to the series, this new site is the best place for that.
I like the design of the site and the way the archives are set up. Easy to use, easy to find where you were and responsive. No wonder it took nearly two years to set up.
So how is chapter 2? Well, it’s a tough chapter to rewatch because we’re introduced to Paul, a character with a lot going on. It’s your prototypical incel, lurking on forums that are, how to put it delicately, toxic as hell, and he’s clearly internalized that. . Danielle’s success as a storyteller makes us feel for Paul, get repelled by Paul, and engage with the comedic in ways that reconcile the two and see where we’re going with this messy man. The chapter goes to dark places beyond the message board and therefore comes with a content warning for suicidal ideation.
Corset’s coloring has also improved since the first chapter. I love the texture of the night and the lighting is top notch. Do you see the glow on Paul’s keyboard? Radon green hard below and yet soft when radiating out. And I have to keep praising the lettering because it’s so beautiful. Fanciful and readable, it brings sounds to life.
Right now the pacing is really great as we get one chapter at a time, although it’s not a steady drop in chapters since we’d all be caught up by now if that were the case. Once things slow down to a few pages or just one page at a time, I think it might start to feel a bit sluggish, but overall Chapter 2 is wonderfully paced, allowing the state to Paul’s spirit to spill over the page without taking pleasure in it. Corset takes the time to show him that he can’t throw a fortune cookie in the trash! It’s a dedication to character work through the mundane.
Get on the “Elephant Town” train now. Trust me, you won’t want to miss the ride as our cast grows in the next chapter.
Updates on Sundays
By Rachel Smith
Reviewed by Mel Lake
They say the breakup is hard to do, but this one is long overdue. I didn’t mean to rhyme that but it’s nice to rhyme once in a while, isn’t it? The primary love triangle between Hades, Persephone, and Minthe returns this week on “Lore Olympus,” but with some major character development from Hades.
When we left Persephone, she was telling the story of her brief affair with Ares, the god of war. He tricked her into a kiss by pretending to be illiterate, then when he was discovered, Demeter gave him a beating with a pitchfork. That’s the end of the story, and unless something about that brief interlude comes up later, I don’t know what the point was. This showed that the young person of Persphone was even more naive and gullible than she is now, and also hinted that she was a fertility goddess with no knowledge of her own powers. Women with powers they can’t control is an sadly familiar trope that this comic is no stranger to, so I guess that aspect of Persephone’s story will return.
But the main event of these episodes is Hades’ break with Minthe. I’ve always sympathized at least somewhat with Minthe because the comic provides enough backstory for her to be a somewhat sympathetic character. Like Persephone, she is manipulated by her friends and abused by the other gods. But while Persephone takes this treatment and becomes the personification of innocence even when she isn’t, Minthe acts – and is treated like – a royal female dog. But having realized that he doesn’t like how he feels when he’s with her, Hades finally breaks up with Minthe. To finish. And while it might seem like she’s ready to accept the situation with some grace and go through a journey of personal growth, Thanatos shows up with some gossip dirt he picked up while snooping around Persephone’s apartment. .
It seems like Minthe’s role in this story could fade away, or she could embark on a quest for redemption and find her rhythm without toxic relationships holding her back. Sadly, I have a feeling we haven’t seen the end of jealous girlfriend Minthe, and with Thetis and Thanatos cheering her on, she’ll become another villain trying to separate Persephone and Hades. Although I know this is literally a soap opera in webcomic form, I’ve had enough of this toxic character. I would like to see her do better, even if it’s not her role in the story. There are enough obstacles in the way of the main duo – mainly a glaring power imbalance due to him being their boss and several thousand years older – so having a jealous ex in the mix seems to add a quantity excessive drama to an already dramatic story. But as the story’s tagline goes, that’s what the gods do after dark, so we shouldn’t expect neat, tidy stories that end in happily ever after.
By Comfort and Adam (art and history) Color Flats by various
Reviewed by Michael Mazzzacane
The third part of “Uniques” ends with a series of team building exercises. Because nothing says it’ll go as well as super-powered teenagers working together in a deadly lab with no supervision. (I mean they’re all pretty much orphans, so who’s gonna be there anyway). In the meantime, if they only knew what dark government conspiracy was heading their way.
Episode 10 shows the strengths and limitations of reformatting pages to fit a vertical strip. As the team tried to enter the SAFE room, the panels are relatively compact. This negates full group photos and has the by-product of creating small groups of narrative sub-friends. It also builds anticipation and tension for what the SAFE room will look like. And then a simple nudge scrolls those panels and… the panels don’t really turn into a large splatter-sized image that emphasizes the enormity of the SAFE room. The design of the SAFE room, a generic white room with perfectly proportioned square wainscoting, is truly made for images that emphasize the grandeur or Tardis qualities of the design. It’s just not supported. However, whatever disappointment is anticipated, it is quickly mitigated by good use of the formation mount panel designs that work well in this format.
Much of this comic is an active elaboration of contemporary and older popular culture. Of course, there’s a group of guards at Ironside Federal Penitentiary named Hicks, Vasquez and Hudson, because aliens is a perennial touchstone. In more contemporary times, their use of Monkey as a certain misogynistic brother from the early 2000s hits much harder, god he’s insufferable. It’s simply well-executed character work, it’s both cheap heat, but there’s also potential for nuance and layering. The ability to just make me hate this character after 3 panels is remarkable. While there are some formal choices that may not be technically the best, the character work and overall plot of “Uniques” continues to make it a solid read and riff on the comics. of cap.