Not even my inking touch-ups could save today’s page, although they did help, as they have for quite a few of these pages.  I really should have gone in and fixed some of the pencils…the underlying composition…which wasn’t all that solid to begin with.  But, board as I was at the time with the project, I just kinda plowed through.  So, we’ll just have to chalk this one up to an example of the artist’s learning curve, always a fun thing to appreciate.   It’s painfully for me to look at these pages over the last few weeks.  I have to remind myself that all the practice and pages I’ve made since is making for a higher quality product than what I’m presenting presently.  Working in obscurity requires some degree of self reliance.

I’ve been further pained in the past couple weeks by accidentally discovering the Comicsgate controversy and its associated youtube posts.  I’ve heard of Comicsgate, of course.  Its hard to avoid hearing about it on comics twitter.  I had managed not to actually look into it, and live in ignorance, merrily working on my webcomic without really knowing what their beef is.  But, a post about popular comic book artist “Rob Leifeld eating popcorn at DC comics imminent demise” caught my attention, followed by an video about “How popular comic book writer X turned her crummy book into a TV show”…. next thing I know I’m immersed in a click bait world of the ruinous effect of Social Justice Warriors on the comic book industry.

It seems to me that some of the Comicsgaters have a good deal of talent, some of them even for making comics.  They’ve figured out something very challenging for a comic book artist trying to DIY, and that’s marketing.  They’ve tapped into the right wing radio political substrate and adapted it for appealing to a block of consumers.  Looking into the comment section of their posts, its easy to see that villainy of SJWs are a big draw for people who feel compelled to put their two cents in.  Conservative comic book readers (oldboys) who don’t feel well served by the creative direction that comic books and fandom have taken in recent years.  All you have to do is go to a comic book convention and see all the people dressed up in their Cosplay to know that the closeted world of the dorky teenage comic book nerdboy of generations past is no longer the driving force behind comic book culture.  Unfortunately, neither it seems, are the comic books.  Comicsgate has a lot to say about the health of the comic book industry and, they would claim (along with Rob Leifeld, apparently) its imminent demise.  From where I’m sitting, the comic book industry should be utterly embarrassed for the state of their industry, having completely failed to capitalize on the billions upon billions that comic book super heroes have brought in by way of their movie spectaculars and turn those ticket purchasers into comic book readers.  Comic book readership stands at the same niche levels it did 20 years ago, miraculous in itself when considering the amount of competition for attention coming from Phone Apps, video games, streaming entertainment and the aforementioned movies.  If you ask CG, the Marvel/DC/Diamond era of comics is coming to a close, as Comic Book Stores close down by the hundreds, squashing the direct market for good.  They may be right, who knows….

Mostly though Comicsgate hates the SJWs, in part because SJWs use their political leanings to manipulate their way into plum creative positions without really paying their dues and don’t really care about comic books.  They just want the Netfix money, the TV/Movie development deal.  That might be a fair point, but less compelling for CG to make when it’s own sales are being drawn from its own aggrieved political constituency, in their case the Trump votin’, gun totin’, big boob lovin’ comic book fanboy of old.  Both CGs an SJWs rely on their political purity to squeeze their blood from the comic book stone.

Doesn’t it feel painful?  You should feel sorry for me!  Here I am,  toiling away on 80 year old comic characters, lovingly re-purposing them to serve the only relevant political message that everyone should hear and truly understand in these strange times.

You’re all a bunch of fucking assholes.