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The 60's Part 1

"The 60's Part 1: The Surf Brothers"

Surf and Turf make a success marketing their music to the Californian baby boomers, but the British Invasion tries to take them down. Classic Rock kicks off the Psychedellic era and wipes out Surf Rock almost entirely. 

Click the link for Part 2


1. Surf Rock was of the first genres of popular music (and perhaps the first rock genre) to universally implement an electric bass as a staple of a rhythm section.

2. The British Invasion was a time when UK bands became popular in the US in mid-60's. At this time, surf rock faced a decline. NOTE: Although The Beatles did have the mod fashion in their early years (which is represented in their cartoon incarnations) the mods in general didn't listen to them as much. They tended to prefer bands such as The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds, and The Who. 

3. The character "Classic Rock" represents a fusion of psychedelic rock and folk rock. As the story progresses, she later adopts elements of arena rock. "Classic" just sounded likes better name. In this story, Classic fills the role for an acquaintance of the band who pressured them into trying acid. This serves as a metaphor for the psychedelic movement.

4. "Pet Sounds" was the Beach Boys first foray into psychedelic rock. Making them the only American rock group to rival The Beatles, at the time. (as well as ending the mod subculture) The Beach Boys wouldn't return to surf music until 1968, and again in 1976.

5. Surf distances himself from Bubblegum because, nobody considered Bubblegum a serious rock genre (because of his heavy commercial impact). 

6. Bubblegum Pop's design was inspired by Archie Andrews, the main character of "The Archies" comics. The 1969 hit song "Sugar, Sugar" by The Archies' fictional band was a popular bubblegum anthem.

7. The rise of heavy metal in the mid-to-late 1960's is depicted as Metal wanting to help Classic drive out the surf culture, but showing up a little too late. In reality, the guitar driven hooks of surf and garage rock gave metal it's distinctive sound.

DISCLAIMER: The reason this series starts off with the 1960's was because the characters were created before the webcomic series. Since I did not have any prevalent 50's genres or a proper storyline in mind, I skipped ahead to the 1960's since the characters were already there. However, I will post "The 50's: Part 1" for my 50th comic special.
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woohooligan's avatar
:star::star::star::star-half::star-empty: Overall
:star::star::star::star::star: Vision
:star::star::star::star::star-empty: Originality
:star::star::star::star-empty::star-empty: Technique
:star::star::star::star-empty::star-empty: Impact

Hey Nick! I love this concept! And I think the art is decent. I was a bit sad to see the color vanish after the 60's... What? No drugs no color? <img src="…" width="15" height="15" alt=";P" title="Wink/Razz"/> Just kidding.

Anyway honestly I think the thing that would most improve this whole series would be for you to break it out and make it bigger / longer. Each individual episode here has a ton of information (and of course text) in it and I think that might be a bit daunting for the average comic-strip-going reader. This individual page for example I think could easily be broken out into 4 or 5 individual strips with just 2 or 3 major points per strip.

Moreover I think that in addition to making the series a bit more digestible for your audience, the smaller individual strips would help you out by giving you more room for the illustration and for the text in each individual strip. It should ultimately feel a bit less crowded, and I think you might be able to get a few more jokes in there as well. You don't necessarily need more jokes, but I tend to think that more jokes is rarely a down side. <img src="…" width="15" height="15" alt=";P" title="Wink/Razz"/> It worked wonders for my series on teaching young children about death! <img src="…" width="17" height="15" alt=":giggle:" title="Giggle"/> Yeah, no I never did that... (but really I did)... but really I didn't... <img src="…" width="15" height="15" alt=";P" title="Wink/Razz"/>

Anyway, keep up the great work! If you do decide to break it out into more individual strips, I think you could easily have a neat little printed coffee-table book at the end, which would be way cool! <img src="…" width="15" height="15" alt=":D" title=":D (Big Grin)"/>
TennisHero's avatar
The reason the 60's were the only ones in color was because I did those for an art class project. The art was all hand-drawn and inked, then colored in on photoshop. The others came later on, when I didn't have access to photoshop.

I have actually put thought into drawing individual strips and have tried using the four panel method for "current events in rock". It worked for a comic I did about Nirvana, but the others had almost no feedback. The reason I draw the full page methods was back when I drew comics by decades, I figured I could do two, for example:The Early 60's and the Late 60's. I'm actually putting some serious thought into four panel strips because it get the creative juices flowing again. I'm working on more now, and could at least try it to see if it's what I like.

Thanks again for this critique. I really appreciate any feedback I get on the series. :)
woohooligan's avatar
TennisHero's avatar
In case your interested, The 70's 1-2 are now in color.
woohooligan's avatar
Shirotsuki-MoonBeast's avatar
:star::star::star::star::star-empty: Overall
:star::star::star::star-half::star-empty: Vision
:star::star::star::star::star: Originality
:star::star::star::star-half::star-empty: Technique
:star::star::star::star::star-empty: Impact

First off I want to say this is highly amusing! The originality of your idea is perfect! Granted, I was not sure at the beginning of this comic if I was reading actual facts or not since my knowledge on rock and roll is well non-existent but after reading the artists comments I had to go back and read it again to get the comic's full impact.
The only problems that I see here is that the poses of your characters seem very stiff, especially in panel 3. There is also a great bit of similarity between all the characters which made it hard to tell them apart at first.
Overall this is a very original and amusing comic! Keep up the good work!
Aumih16's avatar
peace era! psychedelic era! 
BeachBoysfangirl's avatar
omg XD, being a REALLY BIG beach boys fan, this is pretty funny XD
TennisHero's avatar
Glad you liked it! The comics focus more on the subgenres of rock music than the musicians themselves, but on certain occasions, I had some artists make cameos.
TennisHero's avatar
Although, critics will debate on what was considered the first heavy album, there really is no debate that the genre got its origins in the 60's. Steppenwolf, Vanilla Fudge, Iron Butterfly and Blue Cheer in particular are considered to be pioneers of the genre. Some will even argue that its roots date back even further. I think the real inconsistency is that Metal is taking Classic's side in the end, when he arguably has more in common with surf rock.

I said nobody considered Bubblegum to be a serious rock genre. Pop genres are included amongst the rock genres as well, as their own class of characters (I've personified Pop Rock, Disco, Rap/Rock and even Synthpop in later comics.) At this point in the story, Surf has fallen into obscurity and is forced to hang out with genres that he normally wouldn't give the time of day.

Classic Rock's character is a fusion of 60's psychedelic rock and 70's folk rock. She later adopts elements of arena rock in the 80's. Classic is sort of my series mascot and she represents more than just a genre, but the warmth and nostalgia that people who grew up with AM radio and vinyl records can appreciate.

I've had to explain this to several people who've only read the first comic: The decision to start with the 1960's was largely due to the fact that I didn't have any 1950's genres drawn out at the time, and I needed to think of a proper storyline for that era. I told myself that I will do "The 50's: Part 1" as my 50th comic special.

Even though electric bass has been around since the 1930's, as far as rock and pop music goes, the electric bass didn't become a staple until the 1960's and instrumental surf rock was one of the first genres to universally implement it. Probably the first rock genre if you really break it down.

As for the rest, there simply wasn't enough time to cover every single underground movement of the early 60's. Especially since at the time, I drew these comics for an art class and only had one week to cover as much as I could. This is why every decade has two parts that cover a very broad timeline of rock history. Anything else that was not mentioned is either later or referenced later in the series.
9573's avatar
nice idea here :D
I like your comics :D
TennisHero's avatar
Thank you! :D
How many have you read so far?
9573's avatar
i read from the beginning to the end of the 90ies yet :D
TennisHero's avatar
Cool, thanks alot! :)
9573's avatar
sure thing :D
Nanookasaurus's avatar
I wouldn't say the Beatles were Mods, I mean at the start they had the Teddy Boy look but Mods never found there music good, Mods listened to The Kinks and The Faces.
TennisHero's avatar
You're right, they didn't. I could see why it might have confused you by having the mods look too much like the Beatles characters. (even though they did have the mod fashion in their early years)

The mods storming the beaches represented the new wave of British Invasion bands, and I regret not mentioning any others in the comic, but I do get how the Beatles were connected to not necessarily the mods, but to the movement in general.

I'll make a note of that in the "Cultural References" section.
BlitzkriegPunk's avatar
Awesomeness. Love your drawing style
and Surf rock :la:
TennisHero's avatar
Thanks, The music or the characters?
BlitzkriegPunk's avatar
Um, both I guess! But the characters are really cool, in fact, today I was in a real Beach Boys/the Safaris/Dick Dale/ Rivieras mood.
Couldn't wait for summer! xD
TennisHero's avatar
Truth be told, after a while it's hard to hear a surf song without thinking of the character. Here in America, summer is almost over. :(
BlitzkriegPunk's avatar
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