Desperately searching for new webcomics
July 17, 2014 8:19 AM   Subscribe

I am currently obsessed with O Human Star, which has so much of what I enjoy in a comic: a feeling of personal warmth (as opposed to 'cold action'), no convoluted action-y shading/perspective art-wise, unique storyline, science fiction vibes, no purely 'sinister' atmosphere, and nuanced gender elements. What else might I enjoy?

I know I am unlikely to find something else so perfect, but if there are other webcomics out there which incorporate some of these elements, I would be very thankful to be pointed in their direction.

Other things that I have enjoyed, for varying reasons and to varying degrees: Templar AZ, Achewood to a degree, xkcd (if that even counts), some aspects of Shadoweyes, etc. In print: the perfect Lynda Barry, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Gilbert Shelton's Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, aspects of Adrian Tomine, Robert Crumb, Daniel Clowes, (but only sort of. I don't like general sinister surreal-ness very much.)

I am really out of the loop on this stuff, and would appreciate any leads on new things! (Also, I am open to getting things in print or buying digital copies. They don't have to be online, but I'd be especially happy to find some of those.)

Many thanks!
posted by thegreatfleecircus to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 31 users marked this as a favorite
Questionable Content, perhaps?
posted by tofu_crouton at 8:26 AM on July 17, 2014

You've seen A Redtail's Dream, right?

If you are interested in comics on paper, you might enjoy Berlin, which is beautifully drawn and has a plotline set in lesbian circles in the Weimar Republic.
posted by Frowner at 8:33 AM on July 17, 2014

Magnolia Porter's Monster Pulse. See: Warm feels, easy-to-follow art, unique storyline, science fiction elements, not-entirely-sinister characters and plotlines, etc.
posted by topoisomerase at 8:44 AM on July 17, 2014 [3 favorites]

Seconding Questionable Content - it's a great webcomic with a semi-SF setting (AI's walking around) and a loveable cast of regulars. It's basically a soap opera, but a good one. It's also cool to start at the start and see how much the art style has evolved.
posted by Happy Dave at 8:47 AM on July 17, 2014

I really love Nimona, which is on the surface about an evil wizard and his shape-changing protege, but is really about found families and forgiveness. The characters are marvelous.
posted by suelac at 8:58 AM on July 17, 2014 [5 favorites]

Gunnerkrigg Court, maybe. It gets sinister in places, but it's always alloyed with compassion.
posted by baf at 9:01 AM on July 17, 2014 [3 favorites]

The webcomic Freefall is the story of a genetically engineered anthropomorphic female wolf who works as a spaceship engineer.
posted by Sophont at 9:13 AM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

Shaun Tan's surreality is no weirder than our lives, just a few degrees off. His entirely wordless book The Arrival makes me weep every time I read it. It's how an immigrant arrives, begins to suss out how this new world works, finds kindness, and brings the rest of the family home.
posted by Jesse the K at 9:27 AM on July 17, 2014

If you haven't read Girl Genius, I highly recommend doing so. The art is a bit busy, but it's not nonsensical - many of the places the characters end up just have a lot of stuff in them. Mad scientists do tend to neglect the tidying up, after all.
posted by Urban Winter at 10:55 AM on July 17, 2014

OK, we may have similar tastes here (though I think I am more OK with bleakness and convoluted art, so take these recs with that grain of salt). I'm linking to the first page of each thing from my bookmark list that I think might fit what you're looking for.

Rutabaga is about a chef who joins D&D-esque adventuring parties! Funny and touching and cute.

Bird Boy is a sort of fantasy adventure--still early, but has beautiful art. Often wordless.

Vattu is an epic fantasy with really detailed and thoughtful worldbuilding, cultures during an age of expansion/empire-building (and the fallout on the surrounding cultures), plenty of female protagonists, great art, etc--over 500 pages and lots more to go by the look of things--not that I mind, because I love it and I want there to be lots of it :) The same artist has completed two earlier works, Rice Boy (more whimsical and surreal) and Order of Tales (more serious and a little more towards classic fantasy).

Broodhollow is maybe a bit out of your scope, being a Lovecraftian horror comic, but it's really funny and kind while being terrifying at the same time, somehow.

Digger is a completed webcomic with one of the best narrators/protagonists ever (a sort of butch no-nonsense wombat). It's by Ursula Vernon, it's chock-full of personal warmth, there are dead gods and liver jokes, read it :)

Dicebox is really character-focused sci fi, with female protagonists, queerness everywhere, cool future-gender stuff... it's been running for a while and I honestly forget what the plot is doing and have to reread it every year or two, but I don't mind that. May be just what you're looking for.

Family Man is about hinted-at-but-never-shown-outright werewolves and librarians and scholars during the Age of Enlightenment. Kind of grim at times but very character and relationship oriented. The author takes a lot of the history aspect very seriously, there are lots of footnotes.

Little Dee is more of a newspaper style comic, but it has overall plot arcs and such. It's about a wordless child and some talking animals who adopt her and there are knitting pirates and funny character interactions and I want to hug it. It's a finished thing, with the archives all online.

I also second the suggestions for Monster Pulse and Nimona and Gunnerkrigg Court.
posted by rivenwanderer at 2:59 PM on July 17, 2014 [3 favorites]

John Allison's Bad Machinery ticks absolutely ALL of your boxes and is one of the best web comics out there. (The first two volumes are in print with Oni Press if you prefer hard copies.)
posted by MsMolly at 7:25 PM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks so much for all these ideas! In case anyone else ends up chiming in, I don't want to overstate my aversion to dark surrealism. I actually usually love it in most other art forms, but I don't like it to be the dominant vibe in my comics. Just wanted to clarify that I don't need things to be entirely 'fluffy' or gentle or benign. Many thanks for these links--looking forward to checking them all out.
posted by thegreatfleecircus at 6:15 AM on July 18, 2014

Going to second Digger. Terrific all around.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 6:28 PM on July 18, 2014

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