Thursday, February 14, 2008

Skull was where now?

I've liked the past two strips -- I think the panda jumped the shark a while ago, but Brent's dad sniffing it out was a nice touch.

I am a little confused by the conversation with Brent's mom and Skull though -- is she remembering Skull or not? That is, is she actually mistaken? Or is she covering up? I'm not criticizing for once, I'm asking.


Anonymous said...

It took me a little while too. I thought maybe it was something to do with Skull being mythical. In the past some of the characters haven't been able to see him, so maybe his mum thinks Skull is an imaginary friend?

I honestly don't know. Love the blog though, you're pretty much always on the money and it's fun to read!

Anonymous said...

Maybe that's the point. Maybe it's supposed to be a bit mysterious...

Dave said...

yea, I agree with anon. I think she's treating him like one of Brent's imaginary friends from childhood and assuming that Brent still talks to him. Won't she be surprised to find out that even marriage won't make Brent grow up.

Anonymous said...

Not the best writing on Scott's part if we can't tell what was intended; even if the result is meant to be ambiguous, there's a difference between intentional, artful ambiguity and sloppy storytelling.

Anonymous said...

This is Skulls Bio from the website:

Skull The Troll

The heart of PvP lies deep within the chest of this loveable blue troll. Skull came to PvP magazine as a part of a program that teams up Mythical creatures with young boys and girls in need of a friend. What nobody realizes is that Skull was assigned to Brent.

Anonymous said...

skull is assigned to brent (as listed above). so he probably was brent's childhood friend, and he was letting go of his childhood too much, so skull was assigned to go back to him.

so i think yes, his mother does remember him, but skull probably feels uncomfortable talking about it, and brent blocked it out and is confused.

that is what it seems to me, anway.

Spork said...

Why is this tangential storyline involving Skull's and Brent's past being introduced? What happened to the divorce storyline? I thought we were getting back to that?

Why the hell does that giant sack of lazy do this with every single storyline? How can he possibly be pleased to receive a box of Garfield crap? Garfield sucks! Does he really idolize the mainstream pap generality of Garfield and the selling out it embodies? What's next? Him getting all giddy over a Cathy lithograph?

Oh, and where's Reggie, the black character he has no idea how to use? Where's the color? Remember when he used to put a smidgen of effort into this thing?

Julia said...

Wait. I've read every PVP comic ever, and I had no idea that Skull was assigned to Brent. Are we supposed to read the bios to figure out things that seem rather important to the story?

And I was very confused after this. I couldn't tell if Skull was just weirded out or being sketchy. The whole thing made little sense.

Jai said...

This strip was a lot funnier when I assumed Brent's mom was just loopy. Even though that would also be fairly tragic, for her memory to be going away.

Even so, I couldn't really tell if that was intended. And then I see (From the comments here) that the answer is in a character bio? Haha, okay. Wow. That just wrecked things up for me, although the strip's title of "Mother's Intuition" lends itself to that explanation. Apparently Skull has a background and it's going to be introduced, although maybe (And probably) not in this current "storyline". Oh boy! I can't wait . . . for that to be over with.

So, I guess Brent's mom is actually just being correct (And then retracts her statement?), with the result of Skull and Brent both reacting very weirdly for utterly unguessable reasons. In that case, what the hell was the joke supposed to be?

Anonymous said...

I didn't get it initially, but I'm pretty certain the intent was that Brent's mother can't see Skull and is just humouring him.

The last panel could have been made more clear, such as if his mother ended shaking hands with the air next to Skull.

R.W.McGee said...

I was torn between confused and not really caring. At least the strip with the panda in the wall was solid. Proving once again that Kurtz CAN write a solid strip...he just usually doesn't recently.

How about this: More Francis, more Brent, more office and pop-culture shenanigans...less soap opera.

I finally realized why I like the strip less's internalizing. Before it was outward focused: Francis building a robot to camp out for a movie, playing WoW, Star Wars RPing, etc. etc. etc.

Now it's the 'inner life' of Cole, and Brent, and Jade, and even the freaking cat. At least Francis has so far survived the taint of ridiculous over-exposure.

Kurtz could learn from penny-arcade on this one. Do you ever see Tycho and Gabe engaging in a meaningful dialog about Tycho's sister's wedding? No, they throw scorpions on each other and have a healthy aversion to zombies...and that's ALL I NEED TO KNOW.

Anonymous said...


"[zomg damn u for not making this free comic perfect in every way! i wants my money back!]"

i find the strip consistently entertaining. if i didn't i wouldn't read it as often as i do.

if you take the time to visit the url of a free strip you don't like, then take the time to visit another url and bitch about said strip... you need a hobby. unless that is your hobby, in which case, you need a life.

Anonymous said...

Criticizing things is WRONG! And if you do it you have no life! And you can't criticize something that I like!


Dorko said...

The whole Skull-assigment thing was introduced in issue zero of the Image comic.

And yes, Soctt has multiple storylines all up in the air. And all of them relate back to the marriage story.

It's perfectly ok to be critical of something, particularly if you like it. But there's a difference between "criticism" and "bitching".

Jai said...

Issue Zero of the Image comic? Is that online, somewhere?

R.W.McGee said...

you're right, bitching is when you attack a critic and say that have no life just because you disagree with them.

Adam said...

I actually quite like the way PVP is written, both this particular strip and the whole strip in general. I find it funny that everybody want's scott to tell us exactly what he is thinking and what's going on when much of the fun (for me at least) is figuring it out myself. But more relevant is the fact that most "normal" people (i.e. non PVP staff) can't see skull. Scott has established that many times in the past and that seems to be exactly what this is.

I just realized this is horribly rambling, but I'm too tired to fix it now. I hope I didn't confuse too many people.

JK said...

Issue zero pretty emphatically implies that It's the first time Skull and Brent will will meet - Skull meets Cole and and tells him he's part of a big brother mentoring programme, Cole assumes he's referring to the newly joined Francis but when skull is alone he looks at the page with "your little brother is Brent Sienna" and says, "You and me are gonna be great friends."

Doesn't sound like old buddies reuniting, which is how I read their past from the strip (and also that Brent doesn't remember it even though his mum does)

KM said...

Maybe I'm completely misreading it, but I immediately assumed that Brent's mom is confusing Skull with Cole. Which is pretty funny.

Since no one has made that assumption I'm suspecting I'm wrong on that though. :)

Anonymous said...

Adam- most "normal" people can see Skull. There has really only been the one obvious exception so far... and maybe Brent's mother is going to turn out to be another.

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad to know that I bought all of the compilation issues so that I can be 'in' on all the secret little storylines that only us elite folks with credit cards and reading glasses know about!

I'd hate to not have the money or the time or the desire to read the paper issues. That would mean that I wouldn't have a clue what's going on in the online strip. Yay!

This is the first pvp I've ever read that needed a "news post"-esque explanation. Go go Penny Arcade!

Plus, retconning Skull's beginnings is fucking retarded.

Rachel said...

I like the idea of Brent's mom not being able to see Skull primarily because she doesn't look like the type. And presumably Brent's dad would be the opposite.

If Kurtz doesn't get into this mystery in the next week I'm going to be peeved though. :p

Anonymous said...

When Scott did the Calvin and Hobbes tribute comic, wasn't it Brent and Skull?

Anonymous said...

It just hit me: Scott's turning into George Lucas.

Think about it: it appears as though Skull's origins are being retconned so that he was Brent's childhood companion. Just as C3PO was revealed in the prequels to have been built by Anakin Skywalker. This was a clumsy, unnecessary addition to the Star Wars universe which many fans rightly ridiculed, since it raised the question of why, when Darth Vader re-encountered C3PO, there was no hint of recognition.

I agree with the poster who observed that PvP has become stiflingly interiorized, obsessed with the dynamics of its thin cast of characters and cliched setting. Just as Lucas turned disastrously inward in creating the prequels, filling in backstory instead of forging ahead into new territory, so Scott -- and PvP -- are starting to eat themselves.

By the end of the prequels, I was profoundly uninterested in the Star Wars universe that had once fascinated and thrilled me. Similarly, in PvP, I find myself rolling my eyes at each new "revelation" about Brent's parents, Cole's marriage, and Skull's metaphysical nature.

TheOriginalJes said...

Again, everyone expects the punchline to be at the end of each and every strip! This may be what SK meant by unsophisticated in the other post.

Julia had a good point about the bio's.

Sporky - Who said anyone was doing anything specific? You seem to be going off the deep end, here. Why is this frustrating you so much?

JustSumGuy said...

Wow, I can't believe how down people are on this.

I didn't read "issue 0," I didn't read Skull's bio, and I totally got that Brent's Mom was correct and the Brent isn't supposed to know that Skull was his childhood imaginary friend. Through Brent's Mom's eyes, I think we're going to see more information about how imagination and mythical creatures work in the PvP universe.

I'm pretty intrigued by this turn, it's the first one in a long while that really engages my interest.

Anonymous said...

Blah. This isn't a retcon. The fact that the bio has been in place nearly forever proves that much.

The nature of serial storytelling means that sometimes your audience is going to be left confused and wondering "what".

If the next strip doesn't pick this up, then you might be able to justify complaining, but I really don't see what's not to get at the moment.

And no, you don't have to have read the bio. This strip is introducing the concept in the main continuity, just for people like you.

Mike said...

Here's my theory: Skull was a childhood friend of Brent's. At some point, Brent let go (grew up). Skull was really attached to Brent, and so came back to him 30 years or so later. Skull kept the note seen in PVP #0 all that time. This theory is kind of like Peter Pan. Pan met Wendy during childhood, and then after she grew up, he came back.

Why Brent doesn't recognize that Skull was his childhood friend is left to be determined. Perhaps Skull left when Brent was very young, Brent is repressing the memories, or Skull took on a different form/appearance at the time.

Clint said...

I've got to agree with Julia here. I've also read every panel (over and over) and didn't catch on to this.

Yeah, it would have made more sense with some wink-wink-nudge-nudge between skull and brents mom.

That being said, I think this is still a great storyline.

cheesesoda said...

Heaven forbid you people actually have to take effort to understand the comic. Reading the bio can sometimes lead you into learning some random tidbits on the artist's views of his/her characters. This is a perfect example of that.

I think it's obvious that her "I must be confused" is just her dropping the subject, even though she still remembers.

Anonymous said...

Scott's still fat. And he's only getting fatter by the minute.

Spork said...

Hey, cheesesoda! It's a friggin' comic strip. I shouldn't need to do homework, or buy a fucking comic book to understand what's going on in this four-panel clusterfuck.

Anonymous said...

So, now Scott is going to rip off Bill Waterson and have Skull be some kind of childhood pal to Calvin-era Brent?

cheesesoda said...

PvP has a storyline, so there's obviously going to have background information the reader needs to know in order to understand the comic. Now, if you were talking about a comic such as Toothpaste for Dinner, I would whole-heartedly agree, spork. There should be no "homework" in order to pick up on the comic. Again, such is not the case with a comic that has a storyline dating back to nearly 10 years.

Now, I'm not trying to vehemently defend PvP because I do agree it's a mediocre comic, but I don't see what the big issue is if you need to read the bio.

KBF said...

Spork, remember how people used to enjoy things that are good, instead of pretending they're bad?
Remember how people shouldn't hop on bandwagons and talk down on people who aren't on them?
And I'm suprised your life happens in little 'arcs', Spork. mine sure doesn't, and that's why I think breaking out of arcs for a comic or two, and revisiting arcs is good storytelling.

R.W.McGee, I like both PvP and Penny Arcade, but they are DIFFERENT TYPES OF HUMOR, and because you don't like the humor doesn't mean it's a terrible comic.

I'm not sucking up to Scott, but come up with better reasons why PvP sucks, like the lack of a punchline in Mother's Intuition.

Anonymous said...

I take great pleasure in knowing that Scott is so neurotic that he scans these comments and lets these trivial comments bother him, possibly hanging onto his psyche for days. Scott, stop torturing yourself and do what you do best: being a mediocre comic artist and writer, but an incredible vessel for high fat snackfoods.

Sage said...

Ha, all those of you who cannot constructively criticize you make fun of the man's weight, even though we have no idea what you look like. Plus, he has lost a lot of weight from what he was, more than most people can do, I know from job

I'm sure Scott is fine going beck to his wife and earning money off of something he enjoys doing.

I think he may be scanning the comments less as they aren't really being constructive anymore as that was the whole reason he put the link up to thise blog.

The punchline as I say it was skull trying to slink out of the romo so Brent's mom didn't say anything else. I like the fact that he is fleshing out some of the characters. PVP is a daily strip and has the available scripts to give their characters a little depth that Penny arcade (which I also love) cannot. After the wedding though I hope he gets to more pop culture strips because too much of one is enough

R.W.McGee said...

If you think Scott linked here because he enjoys constructive criticism, you are a bit naive Sage. He linked here so his fans could come and attack the blog.

KBF said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Well, that and he's a neurotic self-hating glutton for punishment (with a side order of delusions of grandeur). He can't stand knowing that some people don't like, care about, or respect him. I suspect this is due to childhood abandonment issues (perhaps now being symptomatically played out in the Meet the Fockers ripoff) and of course insecurities about his size.

Sage said...

Meh, if he wanted no one to really see the post so no one would see the criticisms then he wouldn't have linked it.
I agree with a good bit of what Fake Scott McCloud is saying about story telling elements, except for the fact that PVP has a few elements going on right now like Meet the Parents, the wedding, and the divorce, and each of these stories is going to be intertwined instead then good clean endings. At least FSM critiques are good and come from a place of trying to make it somewhat better or pointing out the flaws.

Its those people that point out him being fat, or eating a lot that critique because they cannot do and the guy has an obvious flaw. Unless its Tim Buckley, whom Scott throws stuff at (i don't know what the story is there) I don't know why you care enough to make those statements. Just dont read it you don't think the cartoonist is attractive, I'm sure thats why most people read Penny Arcade, because those guys make me hot under the collar!

Anonymous said...

One thing that Scott likes to frequently do is thumb his nose at the crusty oldies like he is better than them. As if because he is a part of the "new media empire" that his offerings are better in every respect. He takes every opportunity to flog his opinion and his comic as a bastion of glory.

Maybe the reason the old fossils don't take him seriously is because he has no concept of continuity, can't update on time, takes himself far too seriously, is a shameless self-promoter that can't let his comic speak for itself (perhaps a good thing) and all too often flails about like a little child that is all too willing to take his toys and go home the second ANYTHING rubs him the wrong way.

Seriously, two fucking days late? No wonder you can't get syndicated. You're truly lucky you started your comic early enough to capitalize on the new media internet bubble. What're you going to do when internet fame dwindles? You've probably burned just about every bridge you've ever had with your childish antics.

JK said...

Before this year I've never been very active on the internet so I really don't know what people are talking about with the vitriol - some big debates that went down ages ago? Post a link to this stuff please because it seems pretty out of proportion for the stuff I could find.

KBF said...

From listening to Webcomics Weekly and Daily Affirmation, I have no ****ing clue where the heck your pulling that from, anonymous 2 posts up.

Scott doesn't ride a high horse in any way, he just gets angry and feels above posters like you, which duh he is. Because the way I see it, you've tryed cartooning sometime in the past, failed at it, and now resort to yelling at the ones who succeeded.

Bring ANY proof that that is true, even just 'he said it in so and so podcast once' will work for something, come on.

Spork said...

Aww...lookit. KBF is an apologist fucktard, after all. Isn't that just precious?

Whoever was asking for a link to the drama, you can find it. Just Google Tim Buckley and Scott Kurtz. Basically, Scott accuses Buckley of biting his strips and content. Now, if you want the drama from Scott's first message board, someone with better Googling skills, or old bookmarks will have to step in. Epic flame out on that one. Epic.

Sage said...

Yeah I knew Scott and Tim (both of whom comics i enjoy, just not as much as Penny) both threw comments at each other and that Scott was saying how Tim thinks his stuff is better then everyone else. This I find funny because I see some of these cartoonists like some comics they just get jealous of other people's stuff and how they act even though they do the same way.
Knowing that I can see he at least he and Tim don't throw stuff at each other from their main page, which would get me to stop looking at their comics.
At least from the last week, I think Scott may have overextended himself because his strips were late, his Ding! stuff is still from Tues (which I enjoy) and isn't he doing a second season of the animated? I don't know if thats good for any of the products

Cora said...

I think that Scott is starting a new arc. I think that there will come a story about how Skull did play with Brent when he was a child. Skull was one of Brent's "imaginary friends," and Brent doesn't remember. Brent may not have actually imagined him, but he played with him and his mother thought he was "imaginary."

KBF said...

You know what? Scew it, you complaining about Scott won't make PvP any less enjoyable for me.

Yes he does get angry at him, yes you are right, in a sense. I just need to care less, it's my fault.

Anonymous said...

well I'm glad that's settled then, lol.

JK said...

Stop reserving judgment til you see how it pans out. Judge now so I can go on... PvP plus this blog have become like a delicious combination of bitter coffee and sweet doughnut.

Julia said...

Speaking of Tim Buckley, according to Twitter, Kurtz is all up in arms that he's doing a pregnancy storyline and says he doesn't have the balls to go through with it or do an abortion storyline. It'll end up being false positive.

Hmmm... That sounds like a PvP storyline I once read. So who is the one with no balls?

Dorko said...

Yes, because Scott's false pregnancy storyline had absolutely no emotional impact and no far reaching consequences.

Oh wait....Brent was actually a little dispointed when he found out it was a false positive as he had begun to look forward to being a dad. And he decided that he wanted to marry Jade, the storlyine of which is going on now.

Now, do you think that CAD's storyline will end like that?

JK said...

Am i allowed to like both PvP and CAD or will I get mauled?

Sage said...

Julia if Buckley does the SAME exact storyline then I could see how Kurtz could have a problem with that.

I think CAD will hav the false positive and then he'll go "whoo hoo!" and then she'll be mad at him and put the marriage in jeopardy. Then a chef brian comic will appear.

I like PVP, CAD, and PA all and check them when they all update. I like PVP as its story driven, PA because its funny 80-90% of the time and CAD because its slightly story driven and slightly obtuse. I just dislike when PA does their twispy and crisp or whatever that is and I HATE chef brian, always have always will.

Julia said...

Like I've said, I've read every PvP comic. I'm a fan. But I'm not a fan of Kurtz and his whining. He's claiming something he can't know, and saying that doing that will be a cop out. Except he did the same thing! How can he criticize someone for that?

Anonymous said...

Man, you people are either stupid or in eight grade. If the latter, you are exempt. For those of you who have taken enough lit classes (read: English 101), you seem to have forgotten how to read between the lines.

Part of reading is using your damn imagination, morons.

R.W.McGee said...

I see. You are intelligent because you like to make spurious attacks on those who do not share your opinion, or wish to criticize aspects of a comic strip...but we are dim-witted philistines because we expect the author of a strip to do SOME of the work, and not force us to make un-educated guesses to propel HIS storyline forward. Is that the essence of the proposition you are putting forward?

Feel free to offer a rebuttal you pretentious, anonymous, jackass.

cheesesoda said...

Kurtz is starting to make me change sides. His arrogance is annoying. It's like he attempts to be humble, but he fails miserably, especially regarding those that oppose him. I feel quite obtuse for not really seeing it before now. I mean, I saw it, but I tried to let it pass.

PvP has nothing on CAD and PA.

Franklin said...

I posit, R.W., what our grammatically challenged and nameless "friend" here was trying to say was that it behooves the reader to attempt to exercise some inference now and again.

Would the strip in question be as thought provoking if the fourth panel had simply explained the situation? "Oh, yeah, Brent... Skull was your childhood friend. You blocked it out."

Yes, that certainly makes for an interesting read. Whoopee.

Reading is supposed to enliven the imagination, not beat it to a messy pulp with a blunt stick. The author, in this case, HAS done his work... he has put an idea out there for your to absorb. He's allowing you to have your own ideas about what a given situation means.

Brent was put in a position of confusion due to the conversation between Skull and his mother... and so, too, have you been placed in that position.

As to the comment about "eight[sic] graders" not being able to understand subtlety, I give more credit to the youth than that. To people who find value in the criticism posted on this site, however, I consider you the highest level of dimwit.

"Spurious" enough for you?

Anonymous said...

You all seem to be missing the fact that it's an FREE online webcomic, if you don't like it, stop reading it, go some where else. If you were paying for it, then you would have a right. And if you think you can do better, then prove it, don’t criticize someone for doing something they enjoy, the entire world does not need to like it.

I have read all the comics, and to be honest yes they tend to drift and leave some people guessing. However, if you an avid reader, (of anything, books, webcomics etc.) you know that most authors just don't put the ending right there for you, they work up to it, it's not an immediate satisfaction, you are left guessing, intrigued or not and you make right or wrong guessing, and there’s always more then one story arc going on, that's the whole point to writing. Good or bad.

And attacking the artist's physical appearance? That's a low blow, you're either in that situation yourself, or you just think you’re the new Madonna. No one is perfect, so start criticizing something that's worth it, it’s a webcomic. Free one at that.

And I read all the above mentioned comics, I enjoy them MOST of the time. They have good days, they have bad days. They are all just human, as are you. They make mistakes, and they acknowledge them either to themselves, or let the world know. It’s their decision.

I like how PVP is going, CAD has a goofy no brainer read for me, that could be different for someone else, and PA, that’s just something fun to read. Nothing serious, over the top reading, I have books for those.

And if you actually really liked a webcomic, or you found one, why wouldn’t you read the character bio’s? That’s one of the first things I do to see if it’s worth my time in reading.

As for Mother’s Intuition, I got it right off the bat. Not because I’ve read the bio’s, but because how she looked at Skull, directly. She knows about him, and he uncomfortable. And Brent has no idea what’s going on.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, I've been reading PvP since before there were bios, so why would I need to read one?

Also, the same complaint can be turned to you. You are not paying to read this, so why do so if it makes you upset? As is evident from reading various entries here, TFSM does enjoy PvP, just not the way he used to or as much as he wishes he could. So why is constructive criticism a bad thing?

Adam Prentis said...

The way I understood it, is that the woman is in fact a little... eccentric. Skull is part of the PvP family, and as such joined the team when the PvP magazine started (as Brent's Mythical creature pal - that fact isn't really critical; also it seems quite clear from the years of strips that Skull is closest to Brent). Skull isn't Brent's childhood thingy, Brent didn't know Skull as a child.

That's how I understand it. Admittedly, the strip doesn't make that interpretation easy on the readers, but eh well.

The Peanut Gallery said...

Did you guys ever consider she can't even see him? I mean what if she assumes her kid IS still seeing his imaginary friends and her speech to Skull is really directed at Brent. "Sweetie, you're getting married soon and you'll have to give up stuff like this."
I mean for all she knows, he may have just gestured at the wall while introducing his colleagues. She doesn't actually respond or say anything dependent to his looks or words.

Spork said...

Free ain't a magic fucking shield. If it sucks, it sucks.

Anonymous said...

To anom,
I'm not up set at the comic, I enjoy reading it everyday.
I'm bothered by people who criticize nothing, or what the artist's physical appearance since that has nothing to do with the comic.

And I'm saying people who are new to it might want to, not the seniors. (Bios)

And I definitely was not criticizing TFSM, he has some very good criticism.

Anonymous said...

Scott being fat has a definite impact on the story. Part of the reason the comic is late is because he eats while sketching. Photoshop can only do so much, but when you have a slice of melty, sauce covered pepperoni on a drawing, you pretty much have to start over.

Sage said...

Im sure he's heard better insults from better people above anonymus

At least if you are going to insult be funny or original, neither of which you are.

By that logic then TFSM must be rotund because he hasn't updated since valentine's day.

(TFSM at least you critisize constructivly and creatively.)

Anonymous said...

I criticize his obesity freely and without a trace of guilt. He brings the issue up when he complains about his health issues. He brings it up when he complains about difficulties in his life such as airline seating.

It's his own damned fault, and I feel no sympathy for that gelatinous-gutted, arrogant, lazy, piss-poor creator.

Anonymous said...

Obviously you do not care about making fun of his weight, I kind of ASSUMED that since you did it so freely.

My question is why you are here, do they no have fat people you can make fun of in real life, I'm sure your wit is well missed in whatever mall you inhabit.

Anonymous said...

It looks like Fake Scott McCloud is busy at the moment (has it been over a week already?), so is there any chance you guys can share your thoughts on the recent strips?

R.W.McGee said...

He dumped the parents and they're playing paint-ball to get over Cole's anger issues. It's certainly a step in a better direction. It doesn't excuse, for me, the terrible way he dropped the original storyline...but I guess it's better. It's not funny though, and I think that an adjustment I need to make, is that PvP is just generally not funny any more. That was why the panda in the wall strip really leaped out at me...because it MADE ME LAUGH...and I realized it was just about the only PvP strip that had in a long while.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I have a life. Admittedly a couple minutes a day are spent here getting silly people like you to react and try to insult me in response.

Also, there is far more than one person attacking his obesity. Which is fair, because it takes more than one man to attack several men worth of fat.

I am now imagining a troupe of deep sea drivers with harpoon guns firing at a tentacled Scott Kurtz.

Anonymous said...

One Comic Con I saw a fan give Scott Kurtz a bag of homemade burritos wrapped in foil. He was so excited, he looked like a fat kid who was given a bag of... oh wait.


Jai said...

I like to pretend that all of the comments from "anonymous" are from one person who just likes to argue with himself.

Someone presumably wants to know what I think about the recent strips? Hot damn, it's about time!

Feb. 16, Sister Act - This one was pretty good, until Rip's comment at the end. This seems out of character for him to say, especially considering the huge "They don't make married couples like this, anymore!" aspect that comprises 99% of his personality. I was hoping he would say something Miranda didn't expect him to, which would have been funny and kept him an admirable old-fashioned sort of man's man.

Feb. 17, Sound Advice - Wahahaa ha, whoo boy, a "Just don't screw it up!" punchline! HILARIOUS! Wow! *Grits teeth and tries to keep from tearing his hair out* For fuck's sake, this would have been more interesting if the final panel was totally devoid of dialogue. This is two strips in a row where Mr. Kurtz has an interesting and well-executed setup going on, only to (I feel) blow it as badly as he possible can at the last instant.

Feb. 18, Kitten and Stormy - Brent doesn't care for "pet names" and Jade doesn't care! Whoo-whee! Well, it works on the "arbitrary exposition" level. It seems like it could have been made interesting or even, gasp, funny if the couple had used some ridiculous pet names for each other, or if one of them had taken slight offense where none was intended over one of the sample pet names. Still, there's nothing to hate about this strip. It's just not interesting in any way (Sorry, Scott's parents. I guess we can't always get something worthwhile in the strip out of your actual lives).

Feb. 19, Make War, Not Love - Well, this is a random direction to take. Brent is again assuming that Cole is going to "make" them play tabletop D&D despite there being no evidence of it? "Things have been stressful" lately, so "we all" could use a bit of a release? I thought that Cole was absolutely the only one under any stress lately. Oh, laff, now they're going to go play paintball. Ok. As an artistic aside, I'm getting REALLY really tired of how Cole's tie looks. I daresay it is the crappiest-looking thing in the entire history of PVP. You can't slap two black triangles together and make a good-looking tie, even in cartoon land (Wait, ok, yes you can. But it's called a bowtie). I've never cared for his bizarrely-shaped glasses, either, but what are you gonna do?

Feb. 20, Let's shoot sumthin' - This strip is pretty good, and in fact my only complaint is that this appears to be an explanation for what's going on in the "Cole's marriage is doomed oh no" storyline. Apparently couple's therapy is driving Cole much more crazy than being in a doomed loveless (Or something?) marriage. TFSM has pointed out his disappointment over Cole's utter lack of an emotional response to his situation (Which I agree with). And now Cole is finally expressing quite a LOT of emotion . . . But, uh, it's over having to go to couple's therapy? Is that not what Cole wants? I'd give Mr. Kurtz the benefit of the doubt and say that maybe we're seeing the dark side of Cole, that Cole is in fact wanting to divorce his wife or something and everything that went wrong in his marriage is Cole's own fault and that he doesn't even care if he loses his wife. But this looks a lot more like it's only meant to be a quick chortle (And the actual punchline at the end is decent) that reminds us that Mr. Kurtz has not, in fact, completely forgotten the "Cole's marriage might be doomed oh no!" storyline. What an emotional rollercoaster.

Feb. 21, Let the games begin - Since Brent apparently has absolutely no experience with paintball nor any apparent latent desire to play and learn about it, I'm not sure why he finds Miranda's far greater knowledge of the subject to be sexy. Except, of course, that he wants to bang her anyway and would do it in a heartbeat. Yeah, I can't get enough of that "joke", especially with his marriage coming up. As a technical aside, Miranda's question of "And we can use our own markers?" is awkward. "Can we use our own markers?" might have served her better.

Anonymous said...

I found it odd that Cole comes up decked out in a paintball mask and holding a gun, and is all gungho about playing paintball, and yet doesn't know the most simple terminology, IE: markers and woodsball/speedball.

This seemed very "Disney Kid's Movie" to have the girl be this expert and most likely pro at a masculine sport around a bunch of guys.

Jai said...

Yeah, that's sort of an old and simple joke, but at least it's serviceable. I much prefer the "Francis is awesome at FPS games but will probably suck at paintball" angle, although that's also a pretty simple and clich├ęd setup.

Sage said...

I agree jai, and in the absence of TFSM (temporary I hope) let us get back to the strips. I used your format as it was easier to put my thoughts down as well.

Feb. 16, Sister Act - I agree that the ending takes a great premise and misfires. Rip was rough and straight with everyone and a pretty face, who I may mention is liekly only a younger version of Jade, sways him to that comment? I would have love to have seen him do something along the lines of "Yeah I think you're with the right sister" would have been great as it would have been counter to how Brent acts and actually not given Miranda the reaction she ALWAYS gets. Even a "cold shower" or "gotta get my blood pressure pills" would have been better as it didnt call into question his loyalty (even jokingly).

Feb. 17, Sound Advice - I agree the punchline shouldn't have been the last line. Maybe since he was horfing down those chips he could have said the "don't screw up" line in the 3rd and then something like "this is good dip" in the fourth as Brent and Jade looked at each other?

Feb. 18, Kitten and Stormy - Even through the film I knew they wouldn't have pet names. Thats not in either character's nature, a long pause (one panel) after a suggestion for pet names followed by a "naaaaah" at the same time would have showed the same that they werent those types of people but that they still were on the same page as a couple.

Feb. 19, Make War, Not Love - I agree it was kind of a quick change but I liked that he did reference past history of PVP with D&D and LARPing but there really was no punchline and saw it more as a set-up strip. I agree that his tie is sometimes not the most artistic thing scott draws, but maybe the character model with change, especially if he goes through with the divorce.

Feb. 20, Let's shoot sumthin' - I agree again that Cole's explanation is kinda of out of left field. What i do find interesting is the person I thought was most stable in the PVP universe (besides Jade) may be the most shallow or unhappy for, as you pointed out, he seems more mad that he has to do SOMETHING to save his marriage. I hope though it leads to a strip where Cole takes out his frustrations with Rip on Brent as Cole and Rip seem to have a history of butting heads over things. The last panel was the funniest thing in the last month, besides the Panda for PVP as both Brent and Cole had great lines.

Feb. 21, Let the games begin - I believe this is an attempt to put some depth behind Miranda, and I think showing that men love women who show a knowledge in something outside a normal women's "scope" Usually when a sexy lady shows knowledge of say cars, video games, and in this case, paintball most guys seem them as sexier, a la Megan Fox in Transformers. I can see the obvious "miranda pwns the boys at paintball" strip set-uo but I see a possibility of Reggie returning, by being the one to hit her and then revealing himself. He hasn't been around in a while and is the best device to show Miranda is more then T&A

Fox said...

Thanks a lot for sharing your views jai and sage. :D I pretty much agree with everything mentioned, especially Cole's tie and Rip's comment in Sister Act.

Any chance you can continue with the new strips? :)

(previously anonymous wanting comic feedback)

TheOriginalJes said...

jai - you seem to have hit on something. Perhaps Cole will make a play for Miranda?

Sage said...

Sure, I enjoy TFSM because he actually talks constructively about the comic, which you can't find truly on PVP's forums because they're partisan for or against the strip.

I hope I make some sort of sense when I talk about only appear thats its only a little bit out of my butt. :)

But i do look forward for a return from TFSM to do his thing as well.

Anonymous said...

Scott and Angela naked and in bed together must look similar to a zip lock bag full of curdled milk and hair.

fox said...

What happened to PvP? I can't find a strip for the 23rd or 24th?

It can't be easily doing a daily strip, especially if you're not doing them a week or two in advance.

Anonymous said...

The site says it's his 12th anniversary, which is probably why anonymous up there is fantasizing about he and his wife naked in bed.

R.W.McGee said...

Hey, TFSM, I know Scott is behind, but we could use a new thread before this thing gets out of control.

Sage said...

ARGGGHHH Scott how dare u and ur wife spend time away wee need knew PVP!!!!!!!! WTF!!!

Sorry channeling my inner troll :)
Congrats to Scott its not easy keeping the same person happy for 12 years, probably harder than doing a daily strip. Thanks fully this is the comic strip anniversary


Sage said...

Hey everyone, until TFSM triumphantly returns:

Even teams:
Kind of saw where the punchline was going, but serves its purpose Brent and Cole want to pelt max. However, what I did like is that with the paintball Scott is showing us what is going on with the other characters than the ones we've seen over the last month or so (Cole, Jade, Brent, Miranda). We get to see more of Marci and Francis and their relationship. Hopefully with max that means Reggie will make an appearance, as he works for Max (see below) which will lead to him and Miranda meeting up as I predicted. Also, theyre inviting Robbie so a robbie/jase reunion may be in order. Also Skull will likely be uncannily good or bad and maybe even a Sonya Powers appearance! So i like this storyline as we get to see the PVP universe in its whole before it shrinks back down to the 4 previous people it was concentrated on for the wedding/cole's divorce. The only picky think i would say is Brent's word bubble should have been seperated like Cole's where he started with "Ha,Ha". I read all of Brent's words due to this and then Cole's and the exchange came off awkward.

Friendly Fire- The start of that broader PVP universe exploration. I like how Francis is showing frustration with there constant competition. Whether thats an evolution of Francis himself or for shallower reason (as I would not appreciate paintball groin shots) is up to consideration, i take the latter. As least they're not talking about spit :).

Blind Fury - I expected Reggie at the paintball game and for the same reason that was stated that he can HEAR and shoot and could play with the others. It was funny thought to imagine Brent being shot off screen by the paintball as he is that one who would likely shoot someone else (COle, Skull, Francis). It was kind of a dick move though as brent wasn't DOING anything at tge time. My only change would have Cole and Brent questioning Reggie, Brent leaving to do work, then Reggie tagging him. Maybe that Miranda/Reggie storyline will continue as the only other thing I can think of is him taking out everyone, but Miranda will likely do that and again lead to another interaction. I just hope theres not a unicorn/pony toy involed :).

Jai said...

Feb. 22, Even teams - I only have art direction critique to offer for this strip. First and foremost, in the third panel Cole's "behind the head" view makes it look as if he's about a foot away from Brent. Also, Brent is apparently spitting (With laughter?). Not the best of combinations. And the worst combination is in the fourth panel, where Brent is hunkered in the foreground at nearly the perfect height for his linework to really blend in with Cole's. Make it look as if Cole has some funky new skinny look going on. Just a bad coincidence, but it's definitely something I think could easily have been done better. Brent didn't even need to be in Max's office at all.

Feb. 23, Friendly fire - Francis' "behind the head" angle debut? I can't remember if I've seen it already. Regardless, it makes him look like he's wearing glasses. Since he's apparently so BUSY we can't possibly expect Mr. Kurtz to return to the land of color (Well, you know, except for in his WoW comic strip), so this issue isn't going to be fixed that way. But I really think he should do something to clear up that view of Francis. For instance, look at that first panel shot of Francis and try to find where his hair ends and his chin begins. Whuh-oh!

Feb. 24, Blind Fury - Exactly as Sage predicted, Reggie joins the paintball games! I don't get why he calls the ability to hear things "echo location", though. Reggie does NOT have sonar. He's just not deaf. As usual, good luck in the future when trying to write your black, blind character into strips and have him not act weird, Mr. Kurtz. I guess Reggie is going to play "Marco Polo" while playing paintball, so he can differentiate his team from the other team? Also, good luck trying to shoot something in the woods while blind. There are a lot of trees there, you know. Oh well, I'll probably be happier if I just pretend that Reggie is secretly Daredevil.

I'm not sure about Sonya Powers coming along for the ride, Sage. Brent did say he was going to invite Robbie. Doesn't rule it out, though, Robbie could decline. Maybe they'll play "girls" vs. guys (Miranda, Jade, Marcy, Sonya and Max vs. Reggie, Brent, Francis, Skull and Cole), and the last two standing will be Miranda and Reggie.

Sage said...

Well, the one thing about Reggie, he could take up a defensive position and pick off any noise he hears, I don't think anyone expects his to run through the woods. Outside chance- Reggie and Miranda hit every one they pause for an awkward hello, Skull picks them off and takes the flags :)

Also, doesn't Francis WEAR glasses, his old drawing models shows him clearly having them, and I don't remember a contact/laser surgery story line, so that what he is showing. The behind the back show is a little off but he's showing different perspectives, like the more "realistic" drawins will take some time to get down.

Also, with the REAL Reggie wouldn't you hate to be someone walking with your drink in between the two and be hit in the eye? Its a good story but Id be mad.

TheOriginalJes said...

Blind paintball can't be too much harder than after-dark paintball. I can tell you from personal experience, you can aim at, and hit, a source of sound. Moving around is the hard part.

I think the term "echo location" was taken from one of the Batman movies. (still not cool, though.)

I don't think SK really intends to bind his characters to a plausible reality after 10 years. Sometimes you just have to let your imagination stretch. Let quality set the limits.

Cora said...

Echo location is what dolphins do, but they have to make the noise and listen to the echo. It doesn't make a lot of sense with Brent answering Reggie.

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