Ah, the new year. Take a good, deep breath. Let that "new year smell" fill your nose. Then puke on your toes because you drank too damn much. Sucker.
To help ease your pounding headache, I figured I'd reflect on the reviews of the past year. I've done 25 Wild Webcomic Reviews this year, which is probably a record at this point. A lot of good ones, several bad ones and at least one that isn't actually a webcomic. But which ones were the best? Well, that's a hard question to answer, but I'll try anyway. Here are my top five "new to me" webcomics of the last year.
5.) Lizzy - No other comic I have ever read, or even heard of, combines traditional art with flash animation in such a perfect way as Lizzy. The story, while fanciful, is also grounded in a way that makes it feel real; dirty and rundown. The fact that it's stuck in a kind of hiatus status depresses me a bit and probably pushes it down the list of best comics of the year. Still, this comic is completely worth reading, especially the flash version. That is worth the bandwidth alone.
4. Romantically Apocalyptic - Though there are only about 30 strips to this comic, it is by far one of the most beautiful and mad comics I have ever read. The art is nearly peerless, capable of giving life to the few people and creatures that run around while at the same time making the world look dead in a way that feels real and terrible. And it's pretty damn funny too.
3. The Non-Adventures of Wonderella - There is only one joke in this comic: Wonderella is a terrible superhero. Yet one joke can go a long way, and the comic takes full advantage of it. The comic is funny as hell, and pokes fun at every superhero cliche there ever has been or ever will be. Don't forget to look for the alt-text under the comic images when you read, there's always a bonus joke.
2. Marsh Rocket - Though it appears to be done as a comic (apparently it went on longer than intended anyway), Marsh Rocket is one of those fun comics that I have to recommend people read. It has a rather unique coloring technique, and the story is usually built around violence, typically involving a hedge trimmer. The characters are interesting, fun and the action is done well. The original story is great, and the bonus tales (the last one just wrapping up) are shorter and just as good. Truly one of the best comics I've read all year.
1. Hark, a Vagrant - There is a reason this comic gets so much attention and praise, it is VERY good. The art and humor style are so unique you can identify the artist's work almost instantly, and in a world where everyone does anime/manga style artwork, that is truly awesome. Though each update might have some sort of theme, there is rarely the same joke told more than once, and there's a grounding in reality (due to her historical background) that gives the comic that something most other comics can only pretend to have. All this makes Hark, a Vagrant more than worthy of being the best comic I've read this year.
Funny how all of these are weekly updated strips. I don't think that's a coincidence, typically more work goes into a weekly strip than a daily one, and thus the quality is much higher. Also the archives tend to be a LOT shorter so it's easier to read through.
So what does the new year have in store for the Wild Webcomic Review? Probably more reviews (I've already got a couple set for the next batch), certainly more Not-So-Wild reviews, and maybe I'll finally finish the newspaper reviews. Maybe. Hell, I might even do some self promotion and get more than no one to read this thing. Wouldn't that be awesome?
Anyway, have a Happy New Year, you drunk bastards. Until next time kiddies.