History Repeats ItselfLast week a Connecticut action group going by the name of SouthingtonSOS held a video game burning event where local citizens were encouraged to bring various forms of violent media to be burned in a dumpster, no doubt a reaction to the recent Connecticut shooting.
I wish I could say I am surprised about this, but sadly the whole media frenzy surrounding violence in video games and movies reminds me of something that already happened once and profoundly affected the media it was accusing: Comic books.
During the early days of comic books, things occasionally got a little risqué. EC Horror comics in particular delighted in rendering extremely gruesome images and disturbing themes in their comics, which were being sold to children unbeknownst to their parents (because naive parents at the time had no reason to suspect comics might contain "inappropriate" material). However all that changed in 1954.
German-American psychiatrist Fredric Wertham was upset about how disturbing some of those
Artist Intent vs Fan CriticismsThis has been a subject I've been interested in for years, and one which I personally struggle with on a near constant basis: Artist's intent versus fan criticisms. Before we begin I just want to make this clear that this journal is NOT about "ignoring criticisms" or any sort of endorsement of such an action. I'm gonna be accused of it, of course, but I just wanted to get that out of the way right now.Artist Intent vs Fan Criticisms2 years ago in Personal More Like This
As I've been observing fan interactions over the years I've noticed a severe increase in a sense of entitlement: IE: that if you love something enough you have a "right" to force the creators to change their content to suit your personal preferences. We saw this play out to the extremes this past summer with the Mass Effect 3 ending debacle, and we see it play out to a much lesser extent here on DA quite a bit.
Artists need feedback and criticisms to grow and improve their work, but at what point does it move beyond offering suggestions to help an artist improve to outright de
FlatteredI should be flattered.Flattered2 years ago in Personal More Like This
There are people who literally spend hours of their life every day following me. People who obsessively save every work of art I post online. People who comment and hypothesize about everything I do, even when I am not doing anything. People who make their own comics, websites, and blogs because of me. People who meticulously sift through my stats, my comments, and near-decade old journals. People who obsessively screen-capture everything I say or do anywhere online. People who seemingly have no life other than to talk about every aspect of my own. People who, day in and day out, never tire of talking about me to their friends online.
These people are amazing and I am continually astounded by them and the things they come up with... over a worthless and unimportant cartoonist.
Not even a good cartoonist either. Just an average, slightly stubborn, mediocrely popular on a dubious website... cartoonist. Not a politician with real influence in the world. Not a famous
King Richard III, PS4, Alicorns, and Geek GirlsKing Richard IIIKing Richard III, PS4, Alicorns, and Geek Girls2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Dunno how many of you have heard this, but apparently the remains of King Richard the 3rd have been found and dug up in a car park in England. The DNA testing confirms that it was the notorious "evil" King who was killed during a battle and his corpse and remains put up on display and buried unceremoniously without a coffin near a church.
If you'd like to know more you can see an article about it here: http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/03/world/europe/richard-iii-search-announcement/index.html?hpt=hp_t1
Sony is teasing something big to be announced at the end of February and everyone is naturally speculating that it's probably the announcement of the PS4. If this is true, it'll definitely be a shock to me since Sony never announces new consoles or hardware before E3. Only Nintendo seems to relish in announcing things with a blatant disregard of conventionality, so it would be very unique of Sony to do the same and announce a new console WELL before E3. Of c
Controversial OpinionsYou know, sometimes having opinions can make you feel like no one else shares your views, especially if your views aren't being widely vocalized around you. Case in point: It's just been announced that J.J.Abrams will be directing Star Wars 7, and the internet is raging with butthurt about how shitty Abrams is, making over abundant lens flare jokes, and bemoaning the reboot of Star Trek in the process.Controversial Opinions2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Thing is... I like J.J.Abrams. I liked LOST (despite it's shitty/rushed ending). I liked Super 8. I liked Cloverfield. I even enjoyed the recent Star Trek reboot and am looking forward to the sequel. I never had a problem with lens flares or noticed them being over used. And I think overall Abrams has made a fairly consistent batch of quality movies, which is a amazing considering how many directors flip flop between great and shitty.
But I can't often come right out and say that sort of thing because when I do I get attacked for having an opinion that runs counter to the vast majority o
Its all a ScamContextIts all a Scam2 years ago in Personal More Like This
This is another long one, and I apologize but I need to speak my mind. This journal is in response to the "righteously indignant" users making a fuss about me "selling" fanart of copyrighted characters in my recent Adventure Time post. To the person who signed up today just to write a nasty comment on my new Society6 page. To the person who flagged my recent Adventure Time illustration on DA and then proceeded to send me an e-mail about doing it (probably the same person). To the people creating multiple accounts to try and dissuade users from spending their money how they see fit. And to a long list of people who follow everything I do post just to make sure that their negative voice and attitude are the first voices anyone ever sees on all of my work.
It's All A Scam
I'm in an unenviable position. Popular enough to be well known, not popular enough to be making oodles of cash off my stuff. Part of that is my own fault for not really promoting and selling myself,
Late Lesson LearnedWhile doing research for the new SYAC, I actually stumbled upon something truthful on TVtropes.org. Usually I take everything from that site with a grain of salt, but this one bit actually was surprisingly honest and truthful about webcomics:Late Lesson Learned3 years ago in Personal More Like This
Webcomics work on a very different set of standards than other fiction. Almost all webcomic authors are working pretty much entirely alone as they both draw and script their comics and most do not plan any further along than to the end of their current story sometimes not even that far.
Many of them try to adhere to a schedule they aren't really capable of meeting, resulting in them rushing to meet their deadline and making mistakes that should be avoidable. So many of the good 10% lack qualities standard in traditionally professional works. This can be because of the lack of editorial input as well as the lack of lead time. Not all webcomics suffer from this, though, and even the ones that do can still be interesting. Arguably, some str
Nintendo, Copyrights, Science vs TrollsNintendo Direct BombshellNintendo, Copyrights, Science vs Trolls2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Nintendo Direct unveiled a bunch of big announcements the other day, the highlights being a HD remake of Wind Waker, announcement of a new Zelda, a new Yoshi's Story game, a new 3D Mario game, a new Mario Kart game, and a new Smash Bros game to be unveiled at E3 this year. Other info like a possible sequel to Xenoblades, updates on Bayonetta 2, and a forthcoming WiiU firmware update that'll alleviate some of the sluggish load times and unlock the Virtual Console (as well as the announcement that Gamecube games and GBA games will be possibly sold in the eShop).
Quite a lot of info, but here's my question. Why is everyone surprised at it? I've lived through every console generation with Nintendo and I can honestly say, a lot of this wasn't really a surprise to me. Like, yeah of course they're gonna make a new Smash Bros, Mario Kart, and 3D Mario game. It's friggin' Nintendo. Why is that a surprise? It's not like those are second tier franchises like Metro
Tired of the Video Game IndustryWith the PS4 on the way, the gaming industry is alive once again reminding us how dull and boring and... wrong... it is. Here's a quick summary of some of the things I'm sick to death of hearing about when it comes to video games.Tired of the Video Game Industry2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Polygones = Emotion
I'm sure you've all seen the jokes, but this one stems from David Cage, who gushed over the tech demo of an old man's face for the PS4, remarking about how the only way to get "true" emotion is by bridging the uncanny valley with high resolution models, hi-def textures, and realistic shaders. "True emotion" of course can't be found in books, TV, or cartoons because none of those things can depict the exquisite details of a wrinkled face in true HD glory. I'm sorry to say this, David Cage, but if I can get an emotional response out of 16-bit pixel sprites from Chrono Trigger, or a pictureless book... your logic is faulty.
I'm really getting tired of everything wanting to connect to everything else. I know
Fandoms, Criticism Vlog, and Journals On FandomsFandoms, Criticism Vlog, and Journals2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Like most people, I'm a fan of a lot of things. However I don't often wade deep into fandoms themselves. For example, I like MLP:FiM, but I wouldn't call myself a hardcore Brony by any stretch of the imagination, as is evident by my continued botches of cutie mark colors (something no hardcore fan would EVER screw up).
Part of the reason I don't delve too far into fandoms is because fans can get very... emotional... about their given fandom. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it can sometimes be a crutch. I like a variety of series, but I'm not gonna throw a tantrum because of an episode name, or an animation mistake, like some people do. I don't like how angry or defensive fandoms can get sometimes, and for the most part I think people need to just calm down and relax and not be so standoffish.
Fans are, for the most part, good people who are just enthusiastic about a show or series. Just try to keep that enthusiasm from dipping into the negative side of thing
The BIOSHOCK SongYou can watch it here or over on YouTube at the following http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIwC9_VCZCY&featurelayer_embeddedThe BIOSHOCK Song3 years ago in Personal More Like This
The song is currently available for $0.89 cents at this http://brentalfloss.bandcamp.com/releases until a iTunes version becomes available.
Remember when I said there was a "surprise" coming on Thursday? Here it is! This is one of the projects I've been working on these past few weeks. My job was to make the "Joe" inserts used in this video.
Small UpdateI've been gone from the internet for almost 2 1/2 months now, and chances are I won't be coming back for quite a while longer. Nevertheless I just wanted to give a quick update and thank all my fans who have been so supportive of me these past few weeks/months.Small Update2 years ago in Personal More Like This
I've been amazed at the number of genuine well wishes that I've received. I think the vast majority of my fans genuinely do enjoy my doodles and cartoons and that the well organized and extremely vocal "haters" of me and my work make up a very very VERY small percentage of my watchers. There have been some absolutely wonderful comments and messages being sent my way, and several of you have even sent me links to advice sites or inspirational posts. I truly do appreciate it. Thank you so very much.
I don't say Thank You enough, I think. Because of my fans I've been able to do some amazing things and I owe you guys a lot. Because of you'all, I've been able to visit another country and make friends from all over the world, somethin
Educating OurselvesThis journal contains a lot of potentially buzz-work things that could result in arguments from people who don't take the time to read my message. For example I mention Anita Sarkeesian, but I don't want people to start arguing against her points of view because that's NOT what this journal is about. So please, read carefully before you respond to help avoid knee-jerk reactions since that's exactly what this journal is about trying to AVOID.Educating Ourselves1 year ago in Personal More Like This
Over the years I’ve had a pretty straightforward view on gun control. Guns are dangerous and need to be restricted and made more inaccessible to prevent future acts of gun violence. I’ve never genuinely believed in the idea of banning all guns because I do think people DO need to have ways to protect themselves.
However, I’ve recently been thinking more about a different aspect to the gun control debate and it’s broader implications to other troublesome politically charged areas of our (United States) cult
XBOne... fixed.To everyone who says picking on Microsoft for their consumer unfriendly bullshit was "being unnecessarily mean," take a look at this. Don Mattrick just announced that Microsoft is back peddling with the XBOne, removing the disastrously awful features we've been bashing them for trying to inflict on us.XBOne... fixed.2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Last week at E3, the excitement, creativity and future of our industry was on display for a global audience.
For us, the future comes in the form of Xbox One, a system designed to be the best place to play games this year and for many years to come. As is our heritage with Xbox, we designed a system that could take full advantage of advances in technology in order to deliver a breakthrough in game play and entertainment. We imagined a new set of benefits such as easier roaming, family sharing, and new ways to try and buy games. We believe in the benefits of a connected, digital future.
Since unveiling our plans for X
Microsoft Employees Disrupt Wii U Best Buy EventsRemember how Nintendo was showcasing some of their E3 games at participating Best Buy stores around the country? Well, apparently Microsoft employees have been hired to go to these events and preach about the Xbox One and make comments like "why would you buy a outdated Wii U when the Xbox One is right around the corner?"Microsoft Employees Disrupt Wii U Best Buy Events2 years ago in Personal More Like This
However, the employees aren't getting what they hoped for. Most customers just start bashing the Xbox One in response. Seriously, Microsoft, the people attending these Best Buy Wii U events are people who are intimately familiar with the crap you pulled at E3. They ain't takin' your shit.
At first I thought this might just be a case of one really loyal Microsoft employee taking matters into his own hands (especially since the original source was /v/), but reports have come in from numerous Best Buy's around the country that indicate many Microsoft employees have ambushed the demo lines trying to persuade people to switch to the Xbox One.
Since so many reports have com
Convention BasicsComic Cons are our bread and butter. They're how we interact with our fans, how we sell a lot of our merchandise, and how we meet with other artists. Comic Cons are fantastic... but at the same time there is a lot of unknowns and variables to contend with. I'm just going to outline a couple of things which should be common knowledge. If any artists who have attended Comic Cons want to add their own advice in the comments section, please feel free to!Convention Basics2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Make sure that you travel light. Try and fit everything you can in as small a space as possible to avoid having to pay for excess luggage. Even if you don't fly, getting around an unfamiliar city with piles of luggage will just complicate things. If the con is local, you can probably afford to have more stuff on your table. But if the con is far away, or you need to take a plane or bus, it's probably best to try and pack as light as you can while still having as much inventory as you can manage.
On Humor and Grittyness in Movies/Video GamesI'm getting really sick of the idea that the only good action movies or video games are ones where everything is all serious and dark. It's the whole "gritty" concept blown to extremes. But through all the countless games I've played and movies I've watched, I think that we could back off a bit from being too damn serious and have some fun once in a while.On Humor and Grittyness in Movies/Video Games2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Take the latest Die Hard movie as a prime example. From the start it's a dark, gritty, almost monochromatic movie with a 20 minute car chase sequence at the beginning so over-the-top that it's almost cartoony. But the way it's shot is atrocious and there's no character development what-so-ever that 40 minutes into the film I was looking at the clock wondering not only "when will this be over," but also "what the f*** did I just watch?"
Contrast that to something like Independence Day. People like to rag on Independence Day because it's so "goofy" and "absurd." But what helps the film is that we're given time to enjoy the characters s
Is the Console War Over Before It Began?At the risk of perpetuating the stereotype of being a blatant Nintendo fanboy, I have to say that out of the 3 console systems coming out, it's only Nintendo's which actually seems to have a sort of purpose to it. Let me try to explain..Is the Console War Over Before It Began?2 years ago in Personal More Like This
The latest details for the Xbox One show that pretty much every aspect of gaming culture that we hate has been incorporated into it. Needing to check in every 24 hours to make sure you've legally bought a game? Check. Not able to bring games over to a friend's house unless your friend ALSO buys the game? Check. Forcing game stores to sign an agreement to pay Microsoft a large percentage of the used sale fee? Check. More motion controls? Check. Inability to let independent-developers make games on their system? Check. Not backwards compatible? Check. Stronger emphasis on watching TV and movies than playing games? Check. Seriously, this is like a check list of all the worse possible things to include in a gaming console.
By that account, the PS4 is doing
Objectification of MenAfter reading through the comments on my last journal about Tropes Vs Women in Gaming Part 2 I noticed a lot of people are angry we're even talking about sexism because (as they put it) "men are ALSO sexualized and objectified in gaming so women shouldn't complain that they are too."Objectification of Men2 years ago in Personal More Like This
And while that's a nice thought that sounds logical at first... any causal observer to gaming and most media today will be able to recognize that the two sides are not equal enough to make that sort of comparison. Here's the difference as I see it: Men are objectified and sexualized, yes, but it's not done for women. It's done for men. The objectification of men in gaming and other media is a self image fantasy FOR men. In other words, both the objectification of men and women are done for the benefit of men.
Not only that but again a casual observer will note that the standards of "beauty" are not at all equal on both sides. Female heros are all designed to be attractive, sexy, thin, sensual, pure,
okay, my wife has some crazy fans XDi dont usually like doing cross promotion. we both just kinda do our own things but damn it all if this is not the most awesome thing i ever saw XDXDXDXDXDokay, my wife has some crazy fans XD2 years ago in Personal More Like This
its a strange dubbed version of one of her strips..and...and.. FOR CRYING OUT LOUD THERE IS EVEN AN EMAILING SOUND... and music .. and timed text appearing with actual voiceover doing some pretty cool acting at the same time... and...
Sorry Mario BrosSorry Mario BrosSorry Mario Bros2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Say what you will about Anita Sarkeesian, you gotta admit that people do take note of what she says for good or ill. In this piece of news, it's for the good.
As you might already know, in her latest video she outlined a simple "damsel frees herself" video game. Nothing too spectacular but it showcased how one can subvert the typical trope and make a strong female character out of it. While many were quick to criticize her for not making the game herself (given her kickstarter success), others took a more direct approach and actually made a game in 2 weeks.
The game is called "Sorry Mario Bros," and the plot is that Princess Peach decides to rescues herself by leaving Bowser's castle in world 8-4. You progress right to left through familiar, but slightly altered, original Mario Bros. worlds working your way backwards towards world 1-1. Along the way you can take detours and use Peach's float ability to reach hidden areas and collect "princess coins."
Back? Not quite...About my breakBack? Not quite...2 years ago in Personal More Like This
Despite the increase in activity from me here on DA recently, I'm not entirely "back" in the normal sense of the word. I'm kinda just tip-toeing the waters to see if things have calmed a bit. I'm still trying to get through my issues, with mixed success, and a two month leave of absence isn't going to undo years of stress buildup and stubbornness. But I'm working on it, slowly but surely. You might see some new work here or there, but I don't think I'm ready yet to jump back into doing any of my longer narratives.
In fact, judging by my recent comic's reception, I probably am not ready for a full fledged return just yet...
Kotaku Sunday Comics WIN!
Before I get to the heart of the matter, I would like to thank everyone who voted for brentalfloss over on Kotaku. Kotaku has a weekly feature called "Sunday Comics" where they showcase strips from various game-related web comics and brentalfloss the Comic was up for nomination of being included in the lin
Sucker PunchedThis is a LONG one so settle in!Sucker Punched1 year ago in Personal More Like This
I’ve been re-watching Sucker Punch a lot lately and have been humorously admiring how misunderstood it is. It’s almost comical how a movie that comes right out and says “I am about the negative connotations surrounding the constant sexual abuse and objectification that women endure,” gets reviewed and dismissed as “just another pandering male geek fantasy of objectified sexualized women.”
I could write a book on the various subtle metaphors and messages Sucker Punch visualizes, but I don’t wanna bore you all. But to demonstrate what I mean let’s just dissect a small piece of it.
Before we begin we need to understand two things. First, Director Zach Snyder made the film with the express intent of it being a feminist critique on geek culture. If you don’t believe me, hear it from his own words: http://www.filmschoolrejects.com/features/interview-zack-snyder-on-the-sexuality-and-world
Family Guy + Rape Culture, Digital Animal AbuseIn my last journal I apparently touched a few people off by saying that I didn’t like rape jokes in Family Guy, and that I was upset that a digital mutant lizard was killed in the trailer for Mad Max. There were a number of people who didn’t find those things to be offensive and couldn’t seem to understand why I personally would get so upset. “Family Guy has ALWAYS had rape jokes” or “It’s not even a real animal” being the typical response. So let’s try to address this stuff...Family Guy + Rape Culture, Digital Animal Abuse7 months ago in Personal More Like This
Family Guy and Rape Culture
Before we begin we need to set some definitions so that we’re all on the same page.
Rape culture is a phrase used to describe a culture in which rape is pervasive and normalized due to societal attitudes about gender, sex, and sexuality. Examples of behaviors commonly associated with rape culture include victim blaming, sexual objectification, trivializing rape, denial of widespread rape, or
Resting Up and Suggestions?Stressed OutResting Up and Suggestions?3 years ago in Personal More Like This
Sorry I haven't been around much lately. I think I need time away from the internet. Both to relax and to brush up on my artwork. I am genuinely sick of all the hate surrounding my namesake online, and when I say "genuinely," I mean it. The stress that the recent resurgence of trolling I've gotten has caused me to be quite ill. I know I shouldn't let what anonymous people on the internet say about me get to me, but it does. I need time to recuperate, to spruce and fix up SYAC, and to get back to a point where I genuinely enjoy drawing again. Right now there's no love or passion in my artwork, and it's mostly because of my defeated attitude: "Why bother, they'll just tear it apart anyway."
That whole "project positive" has been a complete bust too. I failed to live up to the idea, and in the process got really sick. I guess trying to force out a constant positive attitude like that was a mistake.
Still working, plus a surprise!
In the meantime, I have still be