Saturday, May 26, 2012

Signal Watch reads: Mark Waid's "Insufferable"

You guys know I'm in the bag for everything Mark Waid has done for the last...  I dunno.  Ever?

Somehow I completely misunderstood that his new online comic, Insufferable, was completely free online.

No, I have no idea what model Mark Waid is using to turn a profit on this, or if there is a profit to be turned.  But at the moment that's not my issue, nor should it be yours, because more great Mark Waid comics are online, and they're free at his new site, Thrillbent.

Waid has re-teamed with Irredeemable artist Peter Krause to tell the story in Insufferable, his second work in his new format, one that uses the native landscape (16x9ish) format we've become familiar with as computer users, and the fact that he can set pacing to some extent with a mouseclick to manage the storytelling.  Its far less intrusive than the limited animation of prior webbish comics experiments I've seen, and manages to use the page pretty well,  I think.

But I'd rather talk up the actual comic than the experiment, because at the end of the day, its about the content.

Waid turns to the urban vigilante brand of superhero after sort of blowing up the heat-vision-bearing version of superheroes in Irredeemable and Incorruptible, and in just four week's worth of the online book, he's done an astounding job of bringing a story to life that works right out of the gate.

Its a broken up version of Batman and Robin with their own issues that surpass those of Bruce and Dick (or Jason or Tim or Stephanie or Damian or Carrie), and its the kind of thing that I think sort of sucks you in from that last panel of the first installment and makes you click "Next".

And, of course, Krause's illustrative-style of art works terrifically well with the world he and Waid are creating, giving a believable view to the character-driven story and capturing the beats and expressions exceedingly well.

Anyhow, give it a shot and be there as it unfolds!


Gerry said...

He recently blogged about this and piracy. His view on it might not be what you expect. or it might.

The League said...

Its a healthy, informed attitude, but I still can't find the place where I can send Mark Waid money for his work. That's the part I'm waiting to see. Will it be donations to the site? A Kickstarter? How's this going to work? Even just to cover server costs?

I'm not saying I don't think Waid has a plan (he sure seems to). But I haven't figured it out ahead of whatever that plan might be.

BTW: from what I'm seeing, the piracy thing seems to be a bit true. You certainly can't fight it, and all you're doing is spending money trying to stop something a motivated 17 year old will crack. But it seems to give people a chance to find and eventually pay for your work.

And at $3.99 a pop for a lot of comics, I can hardly blame anyone for wanting to decide this is worth the money before buying a comic.