Tag Archives: Atomik Komix

No Doubt- Just a Colorist.

Link to today’s strip

Mindy is the only colorist they have right? Unless they’re outsourcing to some cheap autofill color warehouse. So lets chalk one up to Ruby passive-aggressively damning with faint praise.

Going to give a little credit where it’s due here. Colorists have traditionally been one of the lowest things on the comic totem pole, below writers and pencilers, and either equal or slightly below inkers. The only thing lower are the poor letterers. Also there are a slightly higher percentage of female colorists than there are writers or pencilers. I remember talking to a female Transformers comic colorist at a con several years ago, and she was very self deprecating. Compare that with the rockstar reaction some of the line artists got.

Which is a shame because colorists now have way more of an impact on the comic’s aesthetic than the old days of flat four color printing. Computer printing on glossy pages allows every panel to be it’s own mini painting, sometimes quite literally (Alex Ross! Mah Maaahn!)Most line artists these days realize how collaborative the work is, and will praise their colorists to the heavens. Male or female, they’re now getting their due.

But to counter the ‘accuracy’, some criticism from our own Epicus Doomus yesterday. I wanted to quote it, because I’d been thinking the same thing and he said it much better than I could.

It needs to be pointed out here that Mindy got into the comic book business because she was visiting her boyfriend at work, thus any attempts to portray her as some sort of flag-bearing trailblazer will be, uh, quite disingenuous, at best. Also bear in mind that her prior job involved helping her brother (I think) run a broken down old movie house. Perhaps if he wasn’t so lazy BatYak could have written Mindy as a young woman eager to blaze that trail through the (sigh) comic book business, but he chose otherwise. Like many of his female characters, she pretty much stumbled into it while catering to a man. For reference see: Holly, Becky, Jessica, Cindy.

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There She Is…Miss American

Link to today’s strip

Many apologies for the late post.

An odd plot related strip for a Sunday. Batiuk seems to prefer to keep Sundays self-contained and make sure there’s a joke, in order to placate the Sunday only papers and readers. This strip must seem absolutely nonsensical to people who only read the Sunday funnies.

But we learned something today. This elderly gallery owner was also involved in comics. Because everyone everywhere in the Batiukverse was involved with producing comic book related material at some point in their life.

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C Minus

Link to today’s strip.

I’m not a comics fan, but I looked at today’s deposit and thought “That can’t be right.”   Two seconds of dreaded research confirmed my suspicion.

                

Tom Batiuk claims to hold comics creators in high regard, but you know, when he can’t even spell Joe Shuster’s name correctly….

No doubt Batiuk will call his syndicate and post a corrected version, but jeez louise–this is the kind of error that should have leapt from the page and smacked him.

Of course, given the evidence of “Bantom,” and Pete’s Wandering Last Name, and, well, the strip itself, maybe he just doesn’t care.

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On This August Occasion

Link to today’s strip (eventually).

The occasion being, of course, the first of August…and the strip thus unavailable for preview.

Of course, we know how it’s going to go.   Kitch Swoon’s going to talk more about using Dullard’s work in her gallery.  This will probably lead to collectors bidding for his work, and a wealthy life for Dullard.  Batiuk has used this strip to construct his ideal fantasy world, where the real world has no presence at all.  A world where the terrible comics that AK publishes are somehow wildly successful.

That’s one aspect of this strip that truly puzzles me.  He’s got his own invented world, and his own invented comic book publishing house.  He could do literally any titles he wished (providing he doesn’t violate copyright law) and he comes up with stuff that just looks terrible and dull.*  I cannot imagine a comic-book reader, in any era, doing anything with these titles other than turning up his nose.  Back when I was reading comics, the only one of these I would have looked at would be The Scorch, and that would only be after I’d already read everything else that month.

Where are the AK versions of Superman, Batman, or the Flash?  Isn’t that the sort of book that Batiuk wanted to work on back in the day?  So why doesn’t he create his own versions now (other than fears that his knock-offs would be mocked without mercy)?  Wasn’t that Chester’s vision–creating stalwart and true heroes, like the ones he loved as a child?  Why is it that the two dullest sounding AK titles–Rip Tide and the Inedible Pulp–are the only ones with more than one cover showcased in the strip?

Why does Batiuk’s imagination seem so small?

*The Inedible Pulp, Rip Tide-Scuba Cop, Atomic Ape, The Scorch…these are the ones I remember, am I forgetting any?  And if I am forgetting, well, guess why.

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The Man in the Mirror

Link to today’s strip.

I believe commentor Charles had it right a few days ago–Dullard is the new Les, ie, the author’s new avatar.   Today’s strip makes that pretty plain, I think, as suddenly his works are considered “professional” enough to be displayed in an art gallery.   To the point where Swoon feels she has to seek him out personally, rather than make a phone call or put up a “call for submissions” notice.

See, the world failed to appreciate the depth of Les’ suffering, his broad perception of life, and the height of his intellect.   I have a feeling the Westview world is going to appreciate the POOP out of Dullard.  He’ll be not just appreciated, but honored and touted and given first chair to impart his wisdom.

But while Tom Batiuk, the artist, feels he should be honored, praised and lionized, Tom Batiuk, the writer, falls completely down on the job.  The “you had me at” joke works when the “at” refers to something pretty early in a bit of dialogue–“You had me at ‘Hello'” being the original (I think).  Pete’s, on the other hand, occurs when there’s only one word still to go in Swoon’s sentence.  That’s not how it works.  The fact that it isn’t funny or clever is besides the point.

But then, given the ideas that Pete has used to populate (almost wrote “pollute”) Atomik Komix, I don’t expect anything from him to be witty, imaginative or well-formed.

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Tiny Tuesday Terribles

Link to today’s strip.

As noted yesterday by Fearless Leader, today’s strip was not available for preview…nor will tomorrow’s Thursday’s.  It’s really weird the way Batiuk and his publisher feel that these things have to be protected like precious flowers that will wither if subjected to too much light.

So, yesterday we were introduced to “Kitch Swoon,” a name which has a level of dumbness fairly typical of this strip.  In a world of Mason Jarres, Butter Brinkles and Zanzibars, what’s Kitch Swoon but another addition to the eyeroll list.

Apparently, she needs help which only a comicbook publisher’s staff can provide.  Let’s guess:  she’s having some grand opening, with a number of famous guests, and she needs terrible artwork and poorly-written bios to help publicize the thing.  Either that, or she needs help moving and lifting heavy things, in which case she should prepare for disappointment.

No matter what, I bet we’re on the way to being hit with more awards!

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One Mere Monday

Link to today’s strip.

Monday’s strip was not available for preview.  I’m going to guess it’ll be the start of the threatened “Funky-Crankshaft” crossover, and it will involve Pete and Mindy going to the state fair.  There, they’ll talk about how melancholy it all is.

Sorry for pulling a Batiukian move like this, but I’ve got early morning work tomorrow and can’t stay late enough for the thing to drop.

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