There’s something about December that makes me reflect on life. As I spend holiday time with family and the new year rolls around, I wonder just how much I’ve changed. Am I any wiser? Have I done anything to make my life better for myself, or anyone else? Am I okay with the way my life is now?
Recently I re-read the graphic novel Lost At Sea by Bryan Lee O’Malley, and I took a moment to appreciate the kind of coming of age story it is. It doesn’t play the main character as some naive person going on some glorious quest to save the world. Instead, it shows a young woman coming to grips with her life. She’s hit a point where she questions what makes her happy, and how that’s changed in the present. It goes over the kind of thoughts people have growing up but never really talk about, because they’re either considered awkward or embarrassing. This comic encourages people to be open about their emotions and doesn’t color it as purely a feminine problem. It shows that everyone has these thoughts, whether they be as simple as “I’m getting old” to an existential crisis.
As much as I like Gurren Lagann, it’s kind of hard to relate to….
Shortly after writing this article, I learned about Bryan Lee O’Malley’s new graphic novel Seconds. I was happy to hear that the main character was a renowned chef with her own restaurant, yet I was a bit worried. Sure, Scott Pilgrim was an entertaining movie and comic, but there are a number of issues I had with the story and the character development. Was this meant to be a wild ride like Scott Pilgrim, or was it going to fulfill the promise of a more mature story?
If you’ve been following what I’ve been writing on here for any length of time you would have heard me bring up the webcomic Homestuck, each time ending whatever explanation I may have put with “it’s complicated”. And it is, but at the same time I believe that’s it’s one of the most defining pieces of art of our generation. So, to further expand on the explanations that I couldn’t provide, I have some links for you guys today. Let them tell you about Homestuck.
A couple days ago Brian Lee O’Malley, the author of the popular series Scott Pilgrim, conducted an interview with Andrew Hussie, the author of Homestuck. Both being moderately similar in topic and style, it’s not only a wonderful conversation between like-minded people—discussing everything from work schedules to shipping—but also an eye-opening look at internet culture and how it not only influences modi of storytelling, but how people relate to each other and the characters on a different, and perhaps confoundedly closer, level than ever before. Give it a read at the Comics Alliance here.
On the complete other end of the spectrum, we have this video which I think is how many people feel when reading Homestuck for the first time, or just from hearing about it from Tumblr or their friends. It’s hilarious not only because how confused they are, but how some parts of that confusion ring so close to home.
No matter which side of the coin you may fall concerning this series, it has to be conceded that the internet is becoming a huge part of entertainment and with that comes not only memes and feels, but also a sociological bridge to other cultures and subcultures. I believe that more technologically savvy entertainment is paving the way for future endeavors, whether they use it by advertising or entertainment. Homestuck‘s importance is its place in the evolution and acceptance of this trend.