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Lame endings for web comics [Jan. 8th, 2009|09:51 am]
Hi all,

This is a topic that I E-mailed to my self, intending to save it for the weekend. However we've had a heatwave in New South Wales (poor Batty must be cooked out there in the west) and I'm trying to cheer myself up. The weather has finally cooled down today, and I just need to boost my spirits in order to survive the next few hours in the office.

2008 has been a year in which several long-running web comics have ended, or have been announced as ending. On the one hand I can see an author (DC Simpson) who spent much time working to achieve an ending worthy of the reputation that the comic has earned over the years, while elsewhere I can think of at least THREE where the endings were IMHO rather lame; insubstantial and lacking a proper sense of closure, or just cut short. Not naming any names, but one of these three web comics was linked to the Cross Time Café (the origin of a certain character).

(FYI - for my own web comic, I'd like the story to continue even after I die… or become too infirm or senile to continue writing. I can only hope I'll find people with the talent and devotion to continue my work).

Now being an especially story-driven reader and writer, I'm keen to hear opinions on the matter of how important everyone regards endings to web comics. One humble request: if you provide examples please only mention the name(s) of either the web comic or author for the positive comments. For negative comments just hint at which web comic is concerned.

Q1: How much do you appreciate when a web comic author properly ties up all the loose ends in a comic? (Personally I regard killing off characters as a very lazy means to this end).

Q2: Do you prefer comics where the author gives a clear impression that there would be an "off camera" continuity for the comic? (A good example is Calvin & Hobbes).

Q3: How much do you enjoy grand and awe-inspiring endings to a web comic?

Q4: If an author gave an abrupt or dissatisfying ending to a web comic in order to commence a whole new comic, would this make you less likely to begin reading the replacement comic?

Q5: Does receiving a non-ending to a web comic make you feel that the author has been disloyal or disrespectful to their audience? (Unplanned ending, deliberately ambiguous, non-canon ending, recursive, plagiarised etc).

[User Picture]From: thefoxaroo
2009-01-10 12:30 pm (UTC)
Hiya! I haven't read Schlock Mercenary, but I think I have an idea what you mean. With regard to wanting them to continue forever, I *REALLY* know what you mean.

carlfoxmarten said:"However, there are some that seem to lose steam over time (such as story arcs getting shorter and shorter with increasing amounts of one-off jokes) that just aren't worth reading anymore...",
Yes... I couldn't agree more... and I wonder if we're both thinking the same specific comic. If we are, I recall saying mid last year that I hoped it would continue. Well I take that back now... it has utterly degenerated into a rambling, disjointed and meaningless residue of its former glory, and to quote DHLawrence I think it should be put out of its misery. I don't think there's any chance for a grand or awe inspiring ending either; it's too far gone...
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[User Picture]From: carlfoxmarten
2009-01-13 01:36 am (UTC)
If you want to put this through an ASCII converter: 0x4B, 0x26, 0x4B
But I don't think we're thinking about the same comic...
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[User Picture]From: thefoxaroo
2009-01-13 11:09 am (UTC)
ROFLOL! Clever tool for conveying the message :D Nice to be able to use my old IT skills for the first time in about 10 years.

You're right; we weren't talking about the same comic. I never got into that one anyhow. To me it seemed like an endless series of gags alternating between preditation and jokes about online forums. Also the characters lacked the type of substance that attracts my attention.
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