How did we miss this one? Alternative Comics bring us the collected Fancy Froglin: Uncensored, an on-line comic by James Kochalka (American Elf). Here’s what they say: “James Kochalka’s complete Fancy Froglin — the lovable story of a very dirty little frog who only sometimes wears pants. Fancy Froglin is an ineffably cute happy little frog… He’s highly sexual yet purely innocent. And he loves bunnies. Most important, he’s really funny.” Do we need to mention here that this comic is decidedly for adults? Their web site has more.
Another recent discovery from Further Confusion and the My Dreamy Star web site: Anaria, written and illustrated in full color by Jayelle Anderson. “What was once a pastoral world is quickly changing with the rise of the technomages and the decline of the old elven regimes. New threats are rising and the races of Anaria must unite to defeat them or fall to the dark illness spreading throughout the nations. Kaylee Laturell is a kind healer and sun witch who has to confront the enemies of her past in an unexpected way to save their future. ‘The Witch’s Dream’ is the first chapter in a bittersweet tale of friendship, loss, and love.” As you can see from the cover of the first on-paper edition, anthropomorphic characters are very much a part of the magic in this world! Anaria is also published as an on-line comic at My Dreamy Star.
Monica Bruenjes specializes in animation, children’s book illustration, & comics. She is the founder of Subarashii, a creator-owned company designed for providing you with “Splendid artwork for a joyful life.” To that end she has created an on-line comic called Penguin & Peep. “Best friends and polar opposites, Penguin & Peep go on adventures in hopes of having the perfect day together. Penguin loves his home in the zoo, but Peep is always looking for something new.” Also on her web site you’ll find information about Moosebear, a TV series concept which Monica has been trying to pitch. “In the Alaskan woods behind her house, a relocated California girl determined to fit in becomes friends with a magical creature trying to help his no-nonsense neighbors.”
Study Group Comics is a very large collective of writers and artists creating a whole slew of mini-comics, zines, and webcomics. Among them is Magical Character Rabbit, an on-line comic story created by Evans Kinoko. “Magical Character Rabbit is the tale of a young Magi who lives in an enchanted city full of wizards, witches, and warlocks. When she’s entrusted with performing the big Winter Solstice Ritual in front of the whole town, she must go on a quest to find the perfect spell as well as the courage to go forward. An engaging, all ages fantasy for fans of Richard Scarry, Hilda, and Steven Universe!” You can check out the on-line comic at the Study Group web site, but recently they’ve also released a one-shot version on paper which you can find at their Shop.
Once again, discoveries from the Long Beach Comic Con: A new weekly on-line comic. “Tales of Absurdity is the product of the strange and absurd thoughts of cartoonist Alex Hoffman. Topics range from pop culture parody to the bizarre limits of the human imagination. Sometimes they are funny.” And quite often they involve animals, funny and otherwise. Recently, Mr. Hoffman has released the first collection of Absurdity comics in a new trade paperback, The Dawn of Absurdity. “Watch the absurdity evolve over 100 strips with all the twists and turns, parodies and puns.” All of this and more can be found (and purchased) at Mr. Hoffman’s official Tales of Absurdity web site.
For those who might have missed it, this is from Wikipedia: “Pearls Before Swine is an American comic strip written and illustrated by Stephan Pastis, a former San Francisco, California lawyer. It chronicles the daily lives of five anthropomorphic animals: A Pig, a Rat, a Zebra, a Goat, and a fraternity of crocodiles, as well as a number of supporting characters. Pastis has said each character represents an aspect of his own personality and world view.” The continuing comic strip can be found over at GoComics. Now, Andrews McMeel Publishing bring us the latest Pearls Before Swine collection in trade paperback. “In I’m Only in This for Me, the Pearls gang dares to tell the hard truths that the country needs to hear: The importance of prioritizing cheese over everything else, the sadly ignored capacity of bears to solve all of life’s problems, and the crucial Recognition Gap between women in bars and semi-obscure cartoonists with delusions of grandeur. But beneath all the selfishness, absurdity, bungling crocs, and bazooka-wielding ducks, Rat, Pig, Goat, and Zebra continue to find that friendship can make life warmer, humor can make stupidity less annoying, and cheese really does make everything way, way better.” Check it out over at Amazon. This new book also includes some special collaboration cartoons between Mr. Pastis and Calvin & Hobbes creator Bill Watterson.
Imagine a world with no domesticated dogs — only were-dogs. That’s what the artist known as Kez thought up for his largely monochrome on-line comic Until The Last Dog Dies. “Port Jude is a utopia… if you’re human. In a world split down the middle between humans and dog shapeshifters, there is little justice to be had when domesticated dogs have no rights, no citizenship and no life to call their own. Cage is a wild dog who has always seen himself as free, until he strikes a bargain with the devil in the form of a wealthy businessman named Dmitri Molokov. Now, he must risk his life with the cruelties of the illustrious dog fighting rings for his one shot at a better life for himself and his family.” The official web site has the continuing comic, as well as backstory and a link to an introduction video on YouTube.
Okay, this is decidedly adult-oriented! There’s this comic called The Corporeals, “a web-comic featuring the pre-historical, often homosexual, always science-fictional citizens of Bakersfield, Earth”. Really. Here’s how creator Dave Quantic and artist Bill Ferenc describe it: “Howdy! My name’s Manny! I live with my husbear in prehistoric times. We’re members of an alien race from Jupiter called The Corporeals. Our leader, Kaa’laa brought us to Earth and created bodies for us so that we could experience physical pleasures like sex and cheese fries. Yummy! Bear and I live together in our cave. We have a great group of friends I can’t wait to introduce you to. Like Jane and Eve, our lesbirific neighbors and Uni the Unicorn. He’s so silly.” So, check out their web site if you’re curious.
Another animator, another graphic novel: Bob Scott is well-known for having worked on projects as wide-ranging as Warner Brothers Bugs Bunny cartoons to Pixar films like The Incredibles and Ratatouille. Meanwhile, he’s been writing and illustrating an on-line comic strip, Molly and the Bear. “It can be tough on a family when someone new has moved in, especially if it’s a 900-pound scaredy-bear so terrified of wilderness life that he’s fled to the burbs. Fortunately Bear was found by Molly, a fearlessly optimistic 11-year-old can-doer who has taken him firmly in hand, devoted to seeing her hirsute BFF cope with modern life. Molly’s Mom is happy with the new sibling — Bear’s an excellent conversationalist and loves her homemade cookies. But Dad is having a harder time, his role as center of the universe now shared with an ursine behemoth who, unfortunately, adores him.” Now Cameron & Company have released the first collection of full-color Molly and the Bear comics in hardcover. It’s available over at Barnes & Noble.