From 1989 to 1991 or thereabouts, I did a daily comic strip for the University of Georgia student newspaper, The Red and Black. This was before the website existed, back when men were men and “the internet” meant USENET. Everything was done the old-fashioned way: quickly, after classes, for two bucks a strip. The comic wasn’t very funny, but at least it was poorly drawn. I was around 17 at the time; I’m using that as my excuse.
After I graduated, I put scans of some of the surviving original strips on my website, redrew some of the ones I liked, and added a few new ones. By this time, “the internet” meant mozilla pages with gray backgrounds and lots of horizontal rule lines. The dotcom bust would soon follow, and I can’t help but feel my webcomic was somehow responsible. I was over 21 by this point, so I have no excuse for the quality of these strips.
Now in 2006, “the internet” is now “teh internets,” and it means blogs, web 2.0, spam, and of course, porn. The digital versions of the strips I did for my website have been lost, so all I have are the original drawings and the surviving ones from the student newspaper. Some of those are already water damaged, and several I remember are missing.
So I’m scanning in a few of them again, hopefully for the last time. And putting them back up on teh internets, for posterity and public amusement. Mostly posterity.
Wizard of Oz
My favorite, because it’s the only one that I still think is kind of funny.
In dog school, they teach you to hate cats. Comedy.
Batman’s Favorite Pasttime
See, the joke is that bats like to get in people’s hair! Only included because I kind of like the drawing of Batman.
It’s kinda hard to tell, but the cat is having a much better time on her date.
This one I redrew after I graduated, partly because I mistakenly thought my drawing had improved, but mostly because I finally felt old enough to put a dirty word in it. Please don’t ask me to explain why I drew Velma post-mastectomy; I’m every bit as baffled as you are.
At the time, I was proud whenever I did a cartoon with no caption.
Back when these were first on the internets, any webpage with a picture on it was guaranteed to make it on a “Best of the Web” list somewhere. This one was actually mentioned in a review, and that review explained the joke to me. I’m embarrassed to admit that when I drew them, they were just random characters, and it never occurred to me that the Doughboy and the Hand had a relationship.
Another one that I redrew after I graduated; the original started with a picture of what was supposed to be Oprah but failed.
Eh. Decent Loch Ness Monster.
The dogs are consulting a reference book! I mean, how crazy is that?!?
I kind of like the vase, I guess.
Yeah, I can do topical.
The Thank-You Note
When I become famous, critics will discuss the psychological implications of my “dogs doing things as if they were humans” period. They will then go home to their drafty apartments, eat a single serving of microwaved macaroni and cheese, and begin quietly sobbing.
Look it Up
Really, you should’ve seen the strip the paper had before mine. It was even worse.
When this strip came out, Coke had a promotion where random cans wouldn’t have delicious life-giving cola, but a dollar bill. I’m only including this one so I can point out that months after this strip ran in The Red and Black, an editorial cartoonist for The Atlanta Journal Constitution ran the exact same joke. I’ll bet he got paid more than two bucks for his version.
At the Movies with Nostradamus
Nostradamus could predict the future!
Bob Gets Suspicious
What confuses me is how my drawing got worse after I graduated.
In my defense, it’s damned hard to have Cap’n Crunch express just the right level of gravitas.
This was the next-to-the-last one I did (the actual last one is unspeakably awful).