Friday, December 09, 2005

Carson Fire and Elf Life

My brain hurts. I finished my ten-page paper today, finally. A day late, but it's done. I don't have anything to start on the 20-page paper here, though I'll probably have to work on it tonight. So I tweaked the link list, namely the Webcomics part. Check out the new ones, I heartily recommend them. Now the rest of this blog is to explain Elf Life's new status: hiatus disappointment.

I started reading Elf Life when Fans used Baughb in the "Times of War" storyline. He was only a guest start, but I went ahead and read the other comic's archive to understand the character.

I fell in love.

This comic is EPIC in scope. The artwork was a distinct way of depicting elves that I hadn't seen before. It wasn't the tall, thin, Tolkien-copy, and I liked it. But the story was were the true WOW came in. The Convergence was the world of man and the world of the elves, fairies, goblins, etc. slamming together. Baughb, the hero of the story, managed to save a group of elves but was lost in time through a fairy gate. His legend grew in his absence, so imagine everyone's surprise when he shows back up in the village centuries later and they find out he's a complete and total goofus. But most of the goofus behavior is just an act to cover up just how competent he really is, how he failed to save the Princess and the fairy Glynhial and return to the time he had left, and that he knows what the future has in store--the destruction of the elves' world.

Only Baughb can save what's left of their world, if he can bring the various fighting elements together. He knows it will kill him, but he hopes to save Filis and Airek, the best ones able to lead the elves after this second Convergence. Oh and Filis is the missing Princess and Baughb is in love with her, but he doesn't want her to die with him.

Did I mention that Baughb also has to survive his younger self in our present's murderous attacks on the future self in the past?

Serious epic fantasy mixed with baudy humor and naked fairies and mermaids. But the writing is what would keep you coming back. Carson combined "Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge with "Popeye" and it WORKED! This coming from a major "Popeye" hater too.

So why the disappointment? It's the updates. Okay, some things we readers can understand: the computer died, major illness, no electricity due to weather, have no money and must get a real job, moving. Long spans of no updates peppered the archive while you were waiting for the next page day after day. And silence about why there were no updates became more common. Readers gave up. Then the website would be tweaked and our hopes would rise, aided by a trinkle of updates that would end without warning. Or it would be a full text update when I came for a comic. But I put up with it because I saw the potential and was hooked on the story. I STILL want to see Filis become a hero and win her elf. I want Baughb to save the elves and beat his fate. And if he and Filis can't beat their fates, I want it to be a noble sacrifice.

But now Elf Life has been put on hiatus in favor of a political comic that Carson hopes will appeal to a mainstream audience. Why? Because Elf Life doesn't earn any money; because not enough people like fantasy.

What the fuck? In a world where Lord of the Rings sweapt the Oscars, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe has made it to the big screen, and Harry Potter is breaking all the records in movies and print, you can't find an audience that likes fantasy? Oh wait, those examples delievered what they promised.

Look, I don;t hate Elf Life or Carson, and I wish him well on his new venture. I'm waiting for the printed version of the comic or CDs or something I can buy that will have the completed story. But I cannot recommend Elf Life to people knowing their are just going to be disappointed like I am.

And speaking author to author, addressing Carson now: Elf Life is too good for you to keep fucking up. If it is truly your life's work, what you want to be remembered for when you die, take the break, develop a business plan, and create a buffer so you can win back the Elf Life audience with steady updates on a sane schedule. Just email me and let me know when I can buy the finished product, because I'll only be checking in every six months or so. Good luck with Winger.

My public service message for the day is done.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

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