July 11, 2001

There's been some discussion over the last few months about web-cartoonists, their work, and putting things in nice little categories. Some folks have opted out of the discussion, some folks have opted out of the categories, and some folks have made absolute fools out of themselves.

So it's time for me to weigh in with a simple demarcation for those of you who read web-comics. Basically, there are two kinds of web-comics: those drawn by people who do art of some kind for a living, and those drawn by amateurs.

In case you haven't figured it out already, Schlock Mercenary is drawn by an amateur. Sure, sure, I'm learning... but I've got a long way to go before my art has anything like the consistency, flexibility, and superior execution of some of my favorite strips.

One of my new faves is Spaz Labs. It's a young strip (it's been running about as long as Schlock has), with shallow archives (updates thrice weekly), but it's FAR SUPERIOR to 99% of anything else out there. The characters are lively and funny, the art is impeccable (without being cookie-cutterish), the plots are easy to get in to and quick to the punchline, and the site design is probably the best on the whole dang Internet.

The strip might be young, but the guy behind it has been cartooning for quite a while now, and it shows. C.G. Muggridge has been online with 'toons in some way, shape, or form longer than Illiad, Abrams, Kurtz, or most of the other 'big names' in web-toons, and I swear, this strip shows that artistic maturity. It's so good that I feel uncomfortable plugging it... I mean, who am I? I'm just a <ENTENDRE MODE=DOUBLE>schlock mercenary</ENTENDRE>, and a new kid on the block at that. Still, the strip is worth a plug. If you like Schlock Mercenary I strongly suspect you'll like Spaz Labs.

Start here, with the first strip. The hamster brothers have been put in charge of cleaning the toilets, and they got their furry, little hands on some TNT.