Can I Switch To Sports?

I almost feel guilty for failing to mention Will’s use of Kirby Dots in the previous page. Well, they weren’t exactly Kirby Dots, but they were close. We haven’t used a whole lot of circles in the artwork in the comic, and it was worthy of mention. (Also, this page isn’t exactly overburdened with opportunities for discussion.)

This isn’t a huge geek media time of year. #Squirrel and I are waiting breathlessly for the next episode of Penny Dreadful, but they seem to have squandered the only character of color on the show and that sort of pissed me off. I’m gonna check out the next season in hopes of an interesting development with him, but I’m not gonna be happy about it. Maybe it’s a bit much to expect much from a show about Victorian horror, but I would rather they’d had NO BLACK CHARACTER AT ALL than just waste the one they had.

But what I really want to talk about was the Women’s World Cup, which is, as far as the U.S. is concerned, really just the World Cup. No need to add “Women’s” as a qualifier if we don’t call the “other” one the Men’s World Cup. (Sorry, I was forced to concede that my favorite Star Trek captain is Picard, which jeopardizes both my ethnic cred and my feminist cred…so I’m feeling a bit more militant. It’ll pass.)

The U.S. team came out swinging, and the match was seemingly over before it was a third of the way through. Two goals in the first five minutes is something. I don’t watch a lot of soccer…EVER, so I’m pretty sure that the record-setting seven goals scored in the game was the more than I’ve seen in every other match combined. Their much-vaunted defense actually gave up two goals, which is twice as many as they gave up for the entire rest of the tournament, although it’s hard to fault them for loosening up after they leapt to a 4-o lead.

#Squirrel is NOT a sports lover. One of the things that she hates most in the world is overtime; after regulation time expires, she feels as though she’s done her part and it’s time to put on Bravo or E! or something. She will literally start rooting against my team at that point, if the opponent as the ball. She just wants it done as soon as possible. Stoppage Time really screwed with her sense of things, because the nonsensical way in which soccer deals with a time overage doesn’t give her something to clearly hate. Not knowing EXACTLY when the clock is gonna stop is frustrating.

Anyway, we hope you all had a great holiday weekend (assuming you’re in the U.S., otherwise we just hope you had a great regular old weekend).

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In Which I Am Reminded Not To Be Such A Old Cuss All The Damn Time

So…I had to do something a little differently on this page, mostly because Jacob, our lettering god, is almost TOO good at what he does. In the past, I’ve been content to put something like [SOMETHING MAGICAL!] or [SOMETHING FOREIGN!] when rendering speech in a language other than English (or “Common,” for you D&D heads). But Jacob wants to know how much he’s lettering and so on, so he was writing his own dialogue to translate into his fancy fonts. (Some of it was racy too!) That just made me feel bad, so I actually wrote dialogue that Jacob was able to transfer to Al’Dahani. Also, suffice it to say that Tzetzem’Tze’Tzemoze is casting something a little more potent than Cure Light Wounds. (No pun intended in that last panel, by the way.)

So we played D&D yesterday, and it was a GREAT session. Part of what made it so great was the fact that we used Fantasy Grounds for the first time. In the interest of full disclosure, I was not onboard with using FG AT ALL. I’m not a proponent of bringing my tabletop RPGs into the digital age. I like the feel of dice in my hand, I like pencil and paper, I like mats and figurines and wet-erase markers. What can I say? I’m kind of an old fart.

Turns out that Fantasy Grounds is kind of the [REDACTED]. We connected Will’s computer to a projector, so all of our maps and character stats were up on the wall, and that was kind of hype. The initiative order for each round was projected on the wall as well (we roll initiative each round of combat…we use weapon speed too…we’re EXPERTS), and the simple determination of the initiative for the bad guys, AFTER we’d declared our actions, proved more exciting as a result.

Best of all, these old, gnarled, arthritic hands of mine still got to toss some good old hunks of plastic polyhedron. We could roll either on the computer or by hand, it didn’t matter. We were able to use it exactly as much as we liked, and it made the game a lot more fun.

It was a great day. Now get off my lawn.

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500 pages, who knew?

Hey guys,

Will here, just wanted to chime in real quick and thank everyone that’s been with us from the beginning. Its been 500 pages and its been 4 years, Justin got the dates wrong, the 1st of July was our launch. a couple of days later was out first page hit.

This is the longest project I’ve worked on and I couldn’t be happier with what we’eve done so far. I know Justin jokes about how I hate everything that I do (and I do) but, that’s my own artistic hang up. We’eve done wonderful work and I cant wait to show you guys what we have in store.

Much love,

-Will

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Click Here to Comment on Page 500!

This is one of those moments where Will and I were just on the exact same page, even though we contributed different things to it. We came up with Tzetzem’Tze’Tzemoze a LONG time ago and we’ve been dying to get him on the page. Well, the broad strokes we came up with a while ago. The details are still pretty fresh and new. Yet another one of the Thirteen revealed. (Only eight to go!)

I know I said I was done with the “Click Here” blog names, but how can I ignore page 500? We’re actually within two weeks of our 4 year anniversary of doing this comic…but this has to be hands down the biggest milestone of the book so far. We’re halfway to a THOUSAND pages. We’re close to wrapping up Act Two (so to speak) of Volume Two. 83,000 people have been to the site since we launched (although the vast majority have never been back >SOB!<). We have over 400,000 hits and over 3 MILLION page views…and none of that counts Tapastic. (Of course, we’ve only been there two months, but we have almost 100 subscribers and 10,000 page views, so that’s ain’t nothing!)

By far we’ve gotten the largest number of readers from an ad we placed on Girl Genius back in the day, and that ad keeps paying dividends, because people still keep coming to us from there. (Maybe the Foglios have a link to us somewhere?) An ad on Dominic Deegan (another webcomic) has also produced a bunch of readers, as has Lady Sabre and the Pirates of the Ineffable Aether and the review that we got from io9.

To those of you who have stuck things out with us, thank you. I hope we continue to earn your time and attention. Here’s to 4 more years, 500 more pages, and to the next 83,000 readers sticking around!

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The Ridiculous Rules of Hollywood

Jacob is a true professional. It’s probably easier than I think to put the lettering on the “WANTED” poster, and have it underneath the hand of the “judge,” but it looks fancy and complicated to ME. The bearers of the palanquin (which a word that me and my D&D buds were struggling to come up with the other day…we settled on “litter,” I think) all look like badasses, huh?

(You’ll notice that I’m not naming these blog posts “Click Here to…” anymore. That just felt boring.)

I’m a little late in telling you guys, but #Squirrel and I went to see Inside Out last week. There are two things you should know:

1. It’s NOT the best film Pixar has ever made despite the hyperbole floating around out there.

2. It’s a damn good Pixar film, and that means it’s among the best films of the year, guaranteed. Pixar’s worst movies are pretty damn good movies.

The thing that I liked most about this film was the theme/message, and it’s one that every parent in America probably needs to take in: It’s okay for your kids to be sad…in fact, it’s normal and necessary. It seems like most parents these days will do ANYTHING to make sure their kids are happy. Our natural impulse to anyone experiencing sadness is always to try and cheer them up; certainly I’m guilty of it. Parents are more guilty than most, and that’s to be expected. That’s the whole point of this movie, and I can tell you that without spoiling anything.

It’s a great piece of filmmaking…but best EVER? Not from the company that made Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, and Toy Story 3, which I think are Pixar’s three best films. Inside Out is on what I consider the second tier of Pixar films, along with Wall*E and Up…and that’s amazing company to find itself in. (Monsters Inc. and Ratatouille are next, followed by the other two Toy Story films. I’ve never seen any of the others, although I really want to see Brave.)

Here’s the crazy thing…some media outlets reported its $91 million first weekend as a disappointment because it came in #2 to Jurassic World. INSANE. While it’s true that this is the first Pixar film that didn’t open #1, Inside Out still had the best opening weekend any Pixar film has ever had, and it’s the top grossing opening weekend for an original property IN HISTORY. Every film to have a bigger opening weekend was a part of a franchise. That’s HUGE.

To call it a disappointment because the commercials say “#1 ‘family’ movie” instead of “#1 movie” is ridiculous. Media reporters drink too much of their own Kool-Aid.

Inside_Out_Poster

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