WOODLANDS is Pretty Faun-tastic

woodlands fantasy faun comic book cover

Woodlands by Sam Bowen and Ari Pluchinsky is a faun fantasy comic I first discovered at Small Press Expo this year. Sam and Ari sat across the aisle from me, so I traded some books for Woodlands and a copy of their other book, Goldfinch (which I’ll review later).

THE PLOT

Edwyn the faun has been waiting for the return of his grandfather, someone he hasn’t heard from for a while. So, to keep himself busy, he’s been trying to make a sleeping potion for his fellow faun friend Remmy.

This first issue follows Edwyn and Remmy searching for ingredients for a sleeping potion, while also showing the world they live in. Also, giant freaking’ radishes.

SO WHAT’S SO FAUN-TASTIC ABOUT IT?

For a first issue, this sets up the world and the characters in a fun, charming way. The humor is character-based – nothing is forced.

No, not even the ridiculously fat deer.

…That deer, the conflict around it, and what happens after the encounter are some of my favorite moments in this first issue.

BUT IT ISN’T ALL RAINBOWS AND ROSES…

As much as I enjoyed this book, there was one thing that confused me – and that was the flashback moment.

During the deer chase, Edwyn falls into a cave on accident. While inside the cave, there’s a flashback moment: Edwyn sees when he was little and his grandfather found him and carried him back home.

The confusing thing to me is that Edwyn and this flashback moment exist at the same time in the cave. There’s no real filter to separate the two from each other, except that the flashback figures are vaguely blue.

Does this mean the two moments existed at the same time? What caused the flashback in the first place? How will this flashback tie in to the rest of the story later?

There’s no answer for this in the first issue, so I’m hoping this gets addressed later.

IS THIS WORTH SEEKING OUT?

Ultimately, yes, I still recommend this comic. I’m hoping that with time, some elements become more clear in the narrative – especially since this book has such a strong start.

If you love fantasy, and want to see more fauns, check this out. It’s worth the find.

You can read it for free at woodlandscomic.com. But I highly recommend getting the book if you see the creators at any conventions. The books are gorgeous and well-printed.

That’s all for now. Thank you for reading!

You. Are. Awesome.

Featured Artist Friday: Halo Kent

This was the inaugural year for HerdCon, hosted by Marshall University. While I was there, I met this marvelous artist, Halo Kent, and just HAD to feature them.

Halo Kent is the creator of the webcomic, Coffee Run, which is free to read over on Line Webtoon.

Without further ado, here’s the interview!

So what inspired you to make Coffee Run?

Okay…so fun story…or kinda fun story? I…honestly don’t know. Regardless…in high school I was severely depressed (among other things), and I drew a scribble head-sona that represented me, and how I felt at the time (basically how my head felt all conjumbled and like scribbles). Over time, I went to therapy, and got a really cool art teacher who told me he liked the character, and wanted to see where I could take it…so I did some paintings, and began to slowly work on the characters you see now!

When I first saw your Artist Alley table, I was tickled to see so many terrariums. But I didn’t see a whole ton of plants in Coffee Run. To what degree does nature inspire you artistically?

:0 Plants tickle me too as well! Actually, Kale is a plant “person” and is a major part of coffee run (albeit…he’s always super high so….erm…). Plants often inspire me with color pallets, characters (such as kale, and one of my dnd characters Corona!) and generally my addiction to plants seem to bleed into my artwork in some way! I also…might have studied horiculture and floriculture in high school religiously.

Could you tell us a little bit about Eugene?

O-only a little bit? Just kidding… Eugene is my fiance and a huge nerd about art history and books! He’s…not very talkative with strangers (he’s got social anxiety, but he’s working on it and making amazing progress!) and we’ve been dating for about…probably a year now or more. ^^;

What are your artistic goals with Coffee Run (and maybe other projects?) moving forward?

…God i have so many ideas, you have no idea. Once I get some time (and money so I can spend less time at work aha) I’d love to integrate the voice acting I have planned into Coffee Run, maybe animate some panels, and build a website with! But, for right now I work…a lot…and boy am I thankful I made a huuuuuge backlog.

Some other projects I’ve got on my back-burner is another webcomic called The Night Shift….and that’s all I can tell you for now 😉

Got any social media you want to plug?

I would!

Here’s Coffee Run (along with linked to my Patreon, to which +$3 a month patrons get the next update a week in advance!).

My deviantART, where I publish a lot of my art, and my Twitter, (And Twitter for Eugene) where I post a lot of WIPS and memes….and art.

Big thank you to Halo Kent for taking the time to answer these questions.

And thank YOU for reading!

You. Are. Awesome.

Review Day Tuesday: Go Get a Roomie

Chloé C’s Go Get A Roomie is a fantastic journey of self discovery, human sexuality and those thing’s relationship with romance. And one of those great series where you get to see characters grow, develop and change over time.

Heads-up right away, this is not a porn comic, but it tackles human sexuality in a very hands-on way. So everything’s about to get pretty NSFW from here.

Roomie‘ is a life-loving free-living hippie kinda gal – She loves people, beer and getting naked.

In the beginning she kinda ‘knows’ everybody, and has a lot of string-free lovin’ friendships with folks. But she does love to help people, which, when she meets Lillian, makes things a bit complicated.

Lillian “LT. Lazy Tyke” is her opposite; only having very-strong connections with incredibly few people. Namely her family; as she spends most of her time at home and in bed.

When she wakes up to find Roomie beside her, she’s repeatedly woken from her dream-world, and has to choose between leaving the house with her or pushing her out of it.

roomie-comic

Over the almost 9 years of GGaR, it’s grown from a Menage-a-3 style sexy-comedy (jokes about sex but not actually porn) to a group re-assessing what they want out of life, out of sex, and out of themselves.

And then there’s the dazzling array of equally fascinating folks they meet and befriend on their journey;

  • Richard, Ramona’s twin brother and everyone’s favourite B*tch. Pretty much always happy for an ass-slap.
  • Ramona, Richard’s twin sister, and everyone’s favourite Dom, from afar, whose always down to show folks who’s the boss.
  • Lillian’s brother Allen, his fiance Evelyne and their occasional man-lover Steve.
  • Mr Kitteh. Meow.
  • WOC, the “Wise Old Crone” full of stories, advice, and when the time needs, Sass.
  • Aggie, an intersex woman(?) of colour, whose presence varies, as she’s kind of in love with Roomie, who doesn’t really do romance/attachment.
  • Jo, the Bartender. Kilt-wearing, hi-jinx loving, but very quick to shut down a ruckus. His bar is well-decorated with very non-decorative weaponry.

Again, this comic has been going for nearly 9 years now, and I highly recommend it for a complete binge, to fully see these characters grow and change. But for those short on time, here is a good jumping in point, with some context (and some mild spoilers):

Double The Fun” is the first chapter where the twins Richard & Ramona start to come out of their shells a bit, and contemplate moving out of their disapproving parent’s place. It’s also got some great humour from everyone, and the start of a long status-quo where Roomie & the twins live with Lillian. Aaaaaand it’s just before “The Knight in Furs“, a very beautiful dream sequence & story.

Chapter 11: Double The Fun

If you love a good, long story with an intersectional cast, working through their demons day-by-day, you’d be hard pressed for a more engrossing journey than this one.

GoGetaRoomie.com
@GoGetaRoomie | Patreon | deviantART | Tumblr

Mx. Harry Bentley is a nonbinary Comic Artist, Podcaster, and wearer of many hats. She/They also co-own and operate indie publisher Dragonhide Studios out of the UK.

Demon Street

When I stumbled upon Demon Street completely by chance, I proceeded to read the entire thing (300+ pages at the time) within 2 days. It is utterly addictive and fantastic!

Years ago, the Demon Street appeared from nowhere. The old street was lost, and the new one bridged the gap between our world, and theirs.
Most folks block the entrance with trash and try to ignore it. But not Sep Maeda. What possessed him to cross that threshold into a world of danger and uncertainty?

Sep’s not the only human on the other side; but the kids that survive here didn’t come by choice. Some have made lives for themselves, some fight to find the way out – Safety in numbers; alliances are formed and families are made.
The cultures and creature designs are really well done, this as a Netflix series could easily be the new Stranger Things.

All of this is before discussing the gorgous artwork – dark & fantasy stories can often get drowned in greyscale, but Demon Street is saturated with these bright and bold colours that help emphasise (and colour code) some of it’s larger-than-life allies & enemies. Combined with the expertly thinned & thickened inks, this fantasy has a wonderful dreamlike feel to it.

The world, cast & tension builds very gently and very well. New elements of magic & mythos came into play without overwhelming me, my thoughts were as follows:

  • 100 Pages; Oh cool, it’s a fantasy comic, Kids in Peril is a great genre, I wonder where it’s gonna go?
  • 200 Pages; WHOA! This mythos is expanding and exciting, this world’s got some serious legs to it!
  • 300 Pages; HO. LEE. SWEARWORDS. This story is totally engrossing, the characters are all really intersectional, but it doesn’t define them so it’s a lovely slow burn, and I NEED MORE! NOW!!!

DemonStreet.co
@AlizaBees | Tumblr