Hobomian Rhapsody

HE Podcast Episode 84 is live and Episode 85 will be going up Wednesday. Subscribe via RSS or iTunes

HijiNKS ENSUE at Fan Expo Toronto 2012

Toronto Fan Expo is THIS WEEKEND!!!  I’ll be there with Blind Ferret and booth # [I currently have no idea]. The following weekend I’ll be at Dallas Animefest with Rob from Explosm.

The Fancy Sketch Drive was a MASSIVE success! All together with sketches and donations we raised almost $3500 to go towards my $5400 new AC unit bill. The new unit is installed and cooling the house wonderfully. The rest is on credit and will haunt me for years to come. All joking aside, this is just one more time that I am completely floored and humbled by the generosity and compassion of  you Fancy Bastards. You guys are a confusingly bright ray of human decency in an often dim and apathetic world, and I am extraordinarily grateful to have you as a community.

Sketch shipping update: The first 50 or so sketches from last month have all shipped (except for 1 or 2 odd cases). If you’re in the US you should have been emailed a tracking number (and should already have the sketch by now), and if you’re international then you should cross your fingers and hope for the best. Experience teaches me that at least two of your will have your sketches stapled to the tire of a Humvee, driven down a mountain made of fire and mud and eventually returned to me with a note written in a dead language that poorly translates to “Package Fuck.” Those are the breaks, and if you are so sadly broken then I will make it right for you. I will start drawing the remaining 60+ (everyone that ordered during the AC fundraiser) when I get back from Toronto.

So the plot is thickening… or coagulating, or whatever a mixture of 1 part raccoon blood to 4 parts moonshine liquor does. Just a few more comics and this story will be wrapped up. We’ll know what happened to Eli the night he was helicoptered away from the Avengers showing, and what role Boxcar Pete played in his weeks long state of bedrunkitude. SPOILERS: Pete is NOT Eli’s father. Eli’s father is a retired Mexican Wrestler. Everyone knows Hoboes are bound by their code not to don luchador masks, as not to soil them with burnt beans which would be both disrespectful and rude.

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  1. I live in the UK, so I fully expect my sketch will fall through a crack in the space time continuinium and spend several years as a piece of wallpaper in an antechamber of the Osbourne House before eventually being delivered by an excited clerk from the firm of Moriarty & Grippipe-Thin, scoundrels at law who will inform me it has been in their safe awaiting delivery for the last 200 years, and present me with a bill for unpaid legal expenses together with several large angry bailiffs.

      • I dare you to design a shirt for Gallifrey Express Delivery Service – We Deliver Your Package Before You Know You Wanted It.

        • The ad phrase has been knocking around since I was a kid, and the fast-talking guy was doing the old FedEx commercials:

          TARDIS Express: When it absolutely, positively has to be there early last year.

          • I would definitely buy that! In fact I’d buy 5! In Tardis Blue, with the text and some sort of logo in white.

  2. I'm in the Netherlands and customs here seem to have some sort of musical chairs method of determining which packages go through. Then it goes to the national mail service which may or may not have mistaken some wood chippers for sorting machines, might be a budget issue. It's all very exciting really.

  3. Plot Tvist!

    But mostly just wanted to comment to let you know I'm really enjoying the continuity, HE is still my favourite webcomic.

    Keep up the awesome Herr Watson!

      • I really appreciate both of these comments considering I read them about 3 seconds after getting an email telling me that the storylines are ruining the comic and I need to go back to topical nerd jokes and nothing else. I know how I'm SUPPOSED to read those emails. They basically say, "Stop doing stuff that doesn't appeal DIRECTLY TO ME because obviously everyone feels EXACTLY the same way I do!" which is an incredibly selfish and invalid point of view. That said, they still bum me out. I'm glad you guys are enjoying the direction I'm headed.

        • Of course, how dare you spend your time being creative for free in a manner other than expressly dictated by some random guy on the internet. Because everyone knows random guys on the internet are the equivalent of boxcar hobos and as such the source of infinite wisdom.
          I like the direction you’re going in. I also like it when you do geek jokes about whatever happens to be on your mind. I think the main point is, I like your art style and your sense of humour so whichever way you approach your comic (and never forget, it is YOUR comic) I’ll probably appreciate it.
          At the end of the day, if someone likes your comic, they’ll read and support it. If they don’t like it, they don’t have to read it.

        • I'm going to say something that is easy to take the wrong way but please take it the right way. PA has never done very much in the way of continuity but CAD has had a LOT of it. I know you aren't exactly a member of either of those camps but lets look at what is out there:

          If one ignores the "art criminal" and "continuity is like cheating" portions of this issue then I have to say that continuity is a very powerful tool. Also, being free to talk about whatever the hell you want to talk about today is a very powerful tool. Use them BOTH as you see fit and I think you will have better success than if you yoke yourself ot one or the other.

          I hope I've helped.

        • @ hijinksensue

          See this is how I can tell you're a classy dude. Instead of telling those jackholes to eff off you're nicely pointing out the world doesn't revolve around their whims.

          Were it me I'd have just sent a mass email back to them telling them they can either learn to enjoy what you're doing with your own creations, or kiss your rosy red ass.

          But then again I've never been accused of having much, if any class.

        • I was gonna try to make a neat reply, but those other guys beat me to it and did so much more eloquently than I could have.

          " I like your art style and your sense of humour so whichever way you approach your comic (and never forget, it is YOUR comic) I'll probably appreciate it."

          Is pretty much what I was going to say.

          Also, thanks to you, I got way more into Whedon stuff than I would have beforehand, so I owe you. Big time.

  4. Hobos are bound by their code not to don luchador masks… Don Luchador… Sounds like, maybe, the greatest character this side of a fighting time lord.

    • That, or a really weird storyline for the next season of Mad Men. Don Draper leaves the high stress world of advertising for a career as a Mexican wrestler.

  5. My head is, indeed, merely a transport divice for my hat. Hobo's are so wise in the under-truths of the world-sphere. So says my hat.

  6. Brilliant! What a comic to read on my birthday! I'm liking how this big ol' arc is advancing. You all read Boxcar Pete's lines in the voice of the sea captain from The Simpsons, right?

    • "You all read Boxcar Pete's lines in the voice of the sea captain from The Simpsons, right?"

      I know I do. And happy birthday!

  7. Joel, I don't want to be a dick here, I really don't. I don't want to be one of those people who says "well, since I don't like this, that means it sucks". I really don't mind when you do story arcs, I like it better when you do standalone comics, but arcs are fine once in a while. I have to be honest with you though, enough is enough. For the love of god, end this story, it's gone on long enough, it's been like a month already. A week or MAYBE two would have been plenty for this story, because it just keeps getting lamer. Enough.

    • "Joel, I don't want to be a dick here, I really don't. I don't want to be one of those people who says "well, since I don't like this, that means it sucks".

      Mission failed. You were a dick. A total dick. Keep this kind of negative, non-productive shit to yourself.

  8. It must be written in stone somewhere that every sentence started with either " I don't want to be a dick" or " I don't want to sound racist" will be immediately followed by that person being a dick/racist.

      • Maybe this type of comment should be taken super literally.

        "I don't mean to be a dick, but…" might actually mean, "I really wish I wasn't such a dick, but the fact is that I am. I don't WANT to be one, but so far I haven't found a way around it."

        Perhaps we should require the use of the explanatory addendum, "I don't mean to be a dick, but I can't help it…"

  9. Joel, don't the bastards get you down. My only complaint is that you insist on having a life other than drawing comics, back to your computer and entertain me!

    Seriously though I love the storyline strips.

    • It's not even the criticism that gets me down. It's the unbelievable rudeness and entitlement that the Internet has taught people its OK to use when addressing total strangers through a veil of anonymity. The first guy that emailed me (the one that prompted this tumblr post: http://hijinksensue.tumblr.com/post/29877483290/i… could have said,

      "Hey! Longtime reader. I really like your stuff and I've been digging the shift to storylines so far. This most recent one with Boxcar Pete isn't my favorite, but I'm happy to stick around and see what else you have in store. If I could offer one piece of advice, it would be to keep the mini story arcs shorter. With only 3 updates a weeks, 10 comic long stories is nearly a month. Anyway, keep up the good work."

      Considering the full text of his email and his eventual reply to my response, THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT HE WAS TRYING TO SAY. Yet, he decided to use words like "what I hate about bad webcomics" and "boring" "no one cares" etc. That first email might have actually got me to thinking about the length of the storylines in a different light. Instead it just took me to a place of anger and sadness. CHOOSE YOUR WORDS, people.

      • I don’t know if you’ve watched the Newsroom (I know you guys are further ahead of us Brits in airdates of that show – we’re only on episode 5 or 6 over here at the moment) but I heartily agree with a point made recently on that show regarding the internet. If you want to say something to someone, be willing to sign your name to it.

        Internet forums and the internet in general have removed the requirement to have the courage to stand behind any remarks you make to a person. 20-25 years ago anonymous abuse was the purview of the lone nuts who wrote into letters pages in newspapers or who made obnoxious phone calls from telephone boxes on dark street corners. Now any socially awkward nut can share their ill-communicated views from the safety of their bedroom without having to look the person they might offend in the face. And they can do it by hiding their anonymity behind a snappy user-name.

        I’m certainly not innocent of this – I variously use either zenofben or 90percentgeek whenever I log onto a forum or chat site because one is the name of a failed webcomic I tried to make, and the other is the name of the geeky blog I write infrequently. But whenever I post a comment on a news story, or if I have something I actually want to say to someone, I always use my real name and where relevant, put where I live too. That was the point made in The Newsroom about the internet – the civilised thing to do is to stand behind any remark you make; to identify yourself if you want your voice to be heard. Stand up and say what you believe in a clear voice, don’t shout it from the crowd.

        Further than that common courtesy, as I was taught as a boy, says that if you don’t have something nice to say – ask yourself if it needs to be said? And if it does, then say it to a person’s face (or as close as the internet allows), don’t yell it at them when they’re not looking. Pre-facing a comment with “I don’t mean to be a dick” or the dreaded “no offence meant but…” does not prevent the person from being offended, or prevent you from sounding like a dick – it makes it sound like you don’t have the courage of your convictions in what you have to say, or that you can’t be bothered to find a better way to say what it is you wish to say. Laziness and cowardice are not acceptable.

        Sorry for the long rant and please feel free to ask me to take it down but it’s something that has been brewing for a while as I hear about the continuous number of self-entitled idiots who seem to be willing to take the time to write to complain about what they dislike about Joel’s work, but can’t find the time to phrase those remarks politely.

        Ben May
        Reading, UK

  10. My two cents, value them at whatever you like: I like the continuity, it is cool. I still think the strips are funny. I would really enjoy somewhat shorter story arcs, as I have kind of forgotten what Eli originally said happened to him.

    I will continue to read whether you make the arcs shorter or not.

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