A recent study by the New England Journal of Medicine found that 86 percent of all webcomic artists are, quote, "clownshit insane."
Not that I'm criticizing; I wrote a horror novel about dongs, I'm not going to throw stones from that glass house. But man, there is something about webcomics as a medium that really drives people to reach their craziest potential.
In our exhaustive analysis in the forums we found that all of the mind-blowingly insane webcomics fit neatly into five categories, which we have arranged in order of most innocuous to the very nightmares of the Devil himself. So hang onto your sanity good and tight as we tour these five circles of webcomic hell, beginning with Level 5, where we find...
Crazy People with Good Causes
Even the simplest and most banal message can turn into a glorious display of wild-eyed madness when filtered through the spinning kaleidoscope that is the webcomic creator's mind. A perfect example is the anti-smoking comic called...
#10. Easy Breather:
"I told you my bulge has no comment!"
Sure, the 3D-rendered characters in Easy Breather are a little terrifying. And sure the comic seems a little too obsessed with the "quit smoking" thing, pretty much blaming smoking from everything from rape to the Holocaust...
...but if you read the very first episode, it seems pretty harmless. It's an innocent tale of a little girl finding some cigarettes on the beach. Curiosity gets the best of her, but luckily her wise friend is there to intervene!
Well, that's pretty common sense stuff. Now go tell Mom and Dad, kids, so a valuable lesson can be learned!
Aaaaaand they're naked.
See, this is why webcomics are a thousand times better than newspaper comics. This is why I think James Vipond, the creator of this comic, is a mad genius. A character's mother dies? Gee, what would be a nice way to make the dreary mourning scene go down better?
The answer is titties.
I assure you, the censorship was added by us. People make fun of Mr. Vipond, they call him crazy for making a comic where at utterly random times the characters' clothing vanishes into the ether. But dammit, 20 years from now that will be a staple of all entertainment. He's crazy in the way that Tesla was crazy. The world just isn't ready for his brand of genius.
We leave you to your work, James, and continue to...
#9. Hathor the Cow Goddess:
From the site:
"Hathor the Cowgoddess...is a superhero who wants to save humanity through the combination of nurture, sustainability and bonding inherent in the practice of attachment parenting. Her movement is called the Evolution Revolution, her breasts are her superpower..."
Wait, do you mean that her breasts are the source of her superpower? Because it doesn't make sense to say that the breasts themselves are a... wait, you know what? That actually sort of does make sense.
"...and her sidekick is her baby, always carried in a sling and prominently (politically) suckling at her exposed breast."
Well, that seems reasonable. Let's see her in action!
Aaaand... POW! Public nudity.
I stopped and wrote down all of the questions raised by this particular strip. I wound up filling three spiral-bound notebooks. Including:
Question #1. If she's part cow, how are all of her children human?
Question #73. If the point of being a cow goddess is her superior milking ability, why just the two nipples instead of four?
Question #876. Is that a nipple on her scalp?Her pet cause seems to be that the world will be saved, not just by breast feeding, but by breast feeding with a live audience. And I think she's right. If you're at Starbucks and you see a topless cow-woman hybrid loudly breastfeeding her human children, are you thinking about war or pollution? No. You're not thinking about anything other than the shit that's going on right in front of you.
And while it's hard to argue with her "ice cream for breakfast" platform...
...it's a little hard to take life advice from a horned woman wearing a Hannibal Lecter anti-bite mask.
#8. Law For Kids:
We would be remiss if we didn't mention Law for Kids, the comics made by a group in Arizona to help kids stay out of trouble. Already the subject of many an Internet meme, each one is a masterpiece of minimalist storytelling:
What did they do wrong? The comic does not say. As in Oscar Wilde's tale of Dorian Gray, the grotesque sins of the protagonists that occurred between panels two and three are left to the reader's imagination. Perhaps the transgressions you imagine say something about you.
Also left shrouded in mystery is the final outcome, as the sixth and final panel of each comic is left blank, taunting us with the unknowable nature of the future. In this case we think it's safe to say that those two kids were never seen again.
Now let's up the crazy factor a few notches, and proceed to Level 4...
The Webcomic Evangelists
You do not find the run-of-the-mill religious comics wandering this circle of webcomic hell. No, there is certainly no shortage of comics designed to angrily insult people into or out of their religious faith, and while we may disagree with them, at least their message is clear.
But then you have these, the David Lynch-esque comics, seemingly created by feeding the Bible and a stick of dynamite to a goat, and then drawing the bloody aftermath. Do you agree with their message? Disagree? You'll never know. Let's look at a pair of creationist comics from artist Dan Lietha...
#7. After Eden and CreationWise:
Take note of the time. Now stare at the following comic until you think you've got your mind wrapped around its meaning:
Welcome back. If you're like me, about six hours have passed since the last sentence. We know from reading the rest of his site that cartoonist Dan Lietha is a Christian man. But it appears that, from this strip at least, he believes that behind the doors of time lies Cthulhu. And he will eat your Bible.
I don't pretend to understand this man's interpretation of Christianity, but I'm already pretty sure it kicks ass. Let's pull out another one, this is from his other strip, After Eden:
That one took about four hours. I called in sick to work. No, it's not one panel out of a longer story arc. It appears to be a new chapter in the story of Adam and Eve, one where Eve builds a dummy version of herself out of sticks and coconuts so she could either escape Adam, or perhaps lure him into a booby trap for whatever nefarious purpose. Perhaps to eat him.
Then we have this portrayal of the After Eden method of winning over converts:
...which appears to involve rigging your bible with poison darts. "Cain's wife? Sure it's right here in-"
Oh-oh. Somebody at their computer monitor just muttered, "Well, religious comics certainly can't get any more confusing than that." Fool! You just uttered the magic words to summon FaithMouse into our dimension.
Study the strip above. Well that... sort of makes sense. Tree of religious liberties, shredded into toothpicks by the godless ACLU and its... Porno Possum lunchbox. So how about...
That's right, sinful world! A new Pope is in town, and he's not going to stop mowing at the boundaries of your lawn, like that old Pope. No, he's going to mow right over your fucking landscaping!
Wait, is this a pro or anti-Catholic comic? Let's find another Pope episode to clarify it for us.
Huh. Is he... saving that sleeping woman? Kidnapping her? By the way, there's a "you'll shit bricks" moment when you realize the gray mass is a crowd of people.
Alright, let's get to the bottom of their stance on Catholicism by taking a look at their comic discussing Obama's controversial visit to Notre Dame:
Let's... let's just put FaithMouse down and slowly back away...
Far, far away.
Unfortunately, it only gets worse...