Cadenza’s favorite Webcomics

It’s hard to say where newspaper comics will go in the next few years, but have you heard of this interweb thing? There are Webcomics all over the Internet, and, yes, you will find your share of “Marmadukes” out there, but there are also some really good ones. Here are the best of the best, brought to you by Cadenza.

Axe Cop, by Malachai Nicolle and Ethan Nicolle
Most people say they don’t have time for story lines in comics anymore. However, people should make time for “Axe Cop.” This ongoing saga was first written by a free-minded and imaginative 5-year-old, then illustrated by his artistically talented 29-year-old brother. Prepare to see shattered laws of physics, overly explicit foreshadowing and other Hollywood themes interpreted through the innocent yet deranged mind of an American kid. Axe Cop and his band of friends battle against enemies like Bad Santa and tackle the elements of their own past. After reading, you may find yourself screaming Axe Cop’s catchphrase, “I’ll chop your head off!” (Adam Rubin)

Dinosaur Comics, by Ryan North
A young, egotistical T-Rex blunders through life, musing on philosophy, literature and Batman with his companions— Dromiceiomimus, T-Rex’s sweet and demure ex-girlfriend, and Utahraptor, T-Rex’s best friend but harshest critic. God makes semi-regular appearances as a self-absorbed jock, as does the Dungeons & Dragons-obsessed Satan.
The comic runs every weekday with the same six panels, altering only its text. Regardless, it is hilarious in exploring T-Rex’s failed attempts to predict the future (he’s mostly concerned with getting ice cream and rocket boots), comprehend ethics (as when he debunks the golden rule by offering meat sandwiches to vegetarians) and explain literary devices with the ghost of William Shakespeare. Utahraptor tries in vain to keep him in line, explaining, among other things, that T-Rex can’t invent a suffix to indicate a person’s hotness (“a lawyer can practice law, but a lawyerkapow can practice law and look super hot while doing it!”) and that he can’t produce any physical evidence to suggest that the failed assassination attempt on Andrew Jackson was caused by meddlesome time-travelers. (Steve Hardy)

Garfield Minus Garfield, by Dan Walsh
“Garfield minus Garfield” is the “Waiting for Godot” of Webcomics. Every week, Garfield the cat is removed from every frame of “Garfield” comics. The resulting frames chronicle the depressed, bitter owner Jon Arbuckle in his angsty rejection of the world. Whereas Garfield normally ignites Jon’s fuse, “Garfield minus Garfield” depicts Jon as caught in a war with himself. He is prone to unprovoked mood swings, self-narration and violent outbursts. At the same time, Jon’s life is hideously monotonous. He rarely travels outside of the house or interacts with other characters. Though it’s a fun read, an overload can provoke an unanticipated existential crisis. Read with caution. (Jon Emden)

Amazing Superpowers, by Wes & Tony
Imagine a world in which every stereotype is pushed just past its logical extreme. “Amazing Superpowers” is that world.  Geeks are hopelessly inept in social situations. Murderers are crazier than normal. Cops unleash brutality upon the public but are incompetent when tracking criminals. Teenagers are horn-dogs. If you appreciate schadenfreude, then you will love this comic. You will find yourself laughing at more homicides, social suicides and drug deals than you ever thought possible. Don’t forget that each strip has hidden alt-text and a hidden panel (indicated by a question mark at the top right) to add to the humor. (Adam Rubin)

Cyanide and Happiness, by Kris Wilson, Matt Melvin, Rob Denbleyker and Dave McElfatrick
Ever want to bring out the bad side of you? You know, the one that is just a total jerk but doesn’t seem to care? Well, “Cyanide and Happiness” is the Webcomic for you. There is no joke these guys won’t make and no topic they won’t cover. Makes you feel bad in that hey-I’m-laughing-but-I-really-shouldn’t-be sort of way. One of my favorites—just don’t let your parents catch you reading it. (Paul Dohmen)

xkcd, by Randall Munroe
I love “xkcd” for the same reasons that I love Wash. U. Not that this campus wouldn’t be improved by, say, the addition of dinosaurs. But the greatest strength of Wash. U. is that we get the jokes. Think about every time you’ve had a hilarious (albeit nerdy) joke to tell and held back for fear of seeming too smart. No longer necessary. We live in a place where discussions of particle physics and black holes live in harmony with YouTube searches for “world’s longest fart.” We, like xkcd, are irreverent, hilarious and too smart for our own good. We’re adults now, and it’s up to us to decide what that means. Mouse over this article to see the alt-text. (Cici Coquillette)