Monday, November 23, 2009

Cork 37

Here, after the usual hiatus, is the new Cork. Just setting up everyone's place in this universe. Gloot needed a purpose.

Got the next one planned already. Hopefully you'll see it soon.


MrGoodson2 said...

I think this Cork gets more loving per panel that any since the first. Everyone has attitude and some business they are doing. Reads great and gets as close to that Kiskaloo inspiration that got you started on the path.

Tom Carroll said...

Hate me now, everyone, but my feeling is the farther into the story we go, the less Cork feels like a story about a fairy and more like a teen who has stumbled into (or belongs with) some alternate universe. She lost the wings, she got eyes, and now she's got a job. This is just MHO, but hey, that's how I feel ... and it doesn't drag down the humor, style, line quality, consistency, etc. of the strip. Hurm ... I just know I'll be across from Buncake at the 2010 Con and he'll shoot spit wads at me when I'm not looking ...

Beata said...

You can hate me, too, because the eyes/wings thing has been bothering me for quite a while. Every time I wanted to bring it up, though, it felt like I was going to either spoil the party, or be scolded by Scott for being impatient.

I love the strip, the characters, the humor, etc., and appreciate all the time/skill/sweat that Scott puts into creating each one. Every time I see a new Cork, I still devour it like Gloot devours toilet paper. But I also share Tom's concern about how the story seems to be "settling" into something other than what we were originally led to expect -- something other than Fairy.

Scotty Buncake said...

Thanks for the comments everyone! I'm not offended or anything, it's a sign that you guys seem to care about these characters which I appreciate.

To quickly address the comments, Cork is a fairy, but first and foremost she's a character who's stumbled into a new and slightly unfamiliar situation. Kind of like a girl going off to college for the first time, she's out of her comfortable element. The story to begin with is more importantly about THAT, not so much that she's a fairy. That's just circumstance. You will see her 'fairie-like' elements take center stage often, but that would be short-sighted to focus entirely on that aspect.

This is mostly about the progressive character development of this one girl in this ridiculous environment I've decided to place her in. She is going to find herself time and again in situations where she could easily just use her fairy magic to fix any and all problems, but if I did that it would quickly become an entirely uninteresting comic. So, as a result, I'm taking her more in the direction you've seen so far. The fairy look of Cork is ultimately just window dressing for the character within I'm trying to develop.

As to the 'settling' worries, this IS the world that Cork will find herself in for awhile. It WILL be her new home. Boon is where she found herself stranded with no money nor means and as is the case for many of us we have lofty dreams of romanticized travel and adventure, but reality looms and we're forced to compromise, more often than not only miles from where we grew up in the first place. So, it's only natural for Cork who has run out of options to switch to survival mode and take a job. I couldn't have her sit around on the curb for the remainder of the series. She will still dream of expanding her horizons, but the town of Boon will always be home.

Remember, this is a world where hamsters talk and robots eat and monsters steal German automobiles so don't be surprised to see aliens wisk her away to far off planets or some other such nonsense. Just give her some time to become grounded and thrive in this little dump. There are alot of stories available in Boon and the surrounding forests. Fairy or not, underneath she's just a girl looking for a new start.

I hope I didn't sound too pretentious with my observations. I know Cork is just a dorky webcomic, but I thought I'd pass along some of the thought processes I've been going with and address some of the queries you guys have posed.

So again, Ellis, Tom, Beata thanks for the comments! I still abhor Jeff on his best day more than any of you at your seamiest.

PS - Tom, I have no idea what MHO means.

Beata, weren't you one of the people who early on were creeped out by Cork's 'eyeless' look and was wondering when I was going to give her pupils?

Tom Carroll said...

Fairies know what "MHO" means ... heh heh.

MrGoodson2 said...

I enjoyed reading your think through on your dorky web comic. It's good stuff.
Cork's interesting and empathetic. The empathy is of course a mistake she will pay for time and again because it causes attention from weird-ohs that know she cares.
I'm sure the Bijou Movies could become strips. It's rich. They all come to her. If she was a carzy redhead it would make a great TV show.

MrGoodson2 said...

My humble opinion

Tom Carroll said...

Ellis, I knew you would eventually give in to your "Fairy" tendencies. You know the code .... ;-)

Tom Moon said...

Here's how I see it. Scott is being modest because Cork is NOT just a dorky webcomic. And it's not pretentious to talk about character development, plot and theme that we normally reserve for more so-called "serious" literature. Cork is great storytelling, and I for one am very happy to hear people begin to discuss the storytelling aspects in depth. Since we are all artists, it's natural to focus on the art, (which I'm sure we all agree is superlative), but talk about the story is something I'm even more eager to hear. So thanks Scott for that post illuminating your thoughts in this regard.

My overall sense of the strip is that, like Cork herself, it's still in search of its true identity, and so far it has had a bit of a meandering quality. This hasn't spoiled the fun; I think it's just been Scott's working method when it comes to Universe-building, a gag here, a gag there, each one a small brick in the foundation of Scott’s personal universe.

I agree with Scott that at its heart, a fantasy has to center around real human concerns, like getting a job, making your way in the world etc. otherwise the story becomes boring and shallow to anyone over ten. On the other hand the "window dressing" element IS very important. The fairy aspect appeals to the ten-year-old in us and thus makes the story resonate on two levels. The problem is keeping the balance between these two elements.

At heart, Superman is just a guy with a high-stress, high profile job, and a girlfriend who wants more commitment from him than he can give. If he stays in his Clark Kent identity too long, the ten-year-old starts to get antsy. If he stays in his Superman uniform too long, the grown-up in us fails to relate to this god-like person.

I think what Tom and Beata are saying is that the optimum mix between these two elements is not quite there yet. There may be things Scott can do to integrate these elements more seamlessly, never letting one or the other dominate for too long.

One interesting problem is the rate at which Scott can produce his strip. Scott may feel that the strip is moving along very quickly in "Cork Universe" time. We, the audience may feel that it's been too long since we've been treated to scenes of Cork doing magic.

There’s tons we could talk about in this regard, but this post is already way too long. More thoughts from anyone?

#1 Cork Fan, Tom Moon

rickart said...

Well said, Scott and Tom.

For me, there is plenty enough going on that I didn't really notice that Cork wasn't doing a whole lot of faerie things.