Toonbots message board: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

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Michael Fri Feb 11 23:01:23 2005
Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

What a coooool review on comixpedia.com! Thanks! I laughed, I cried -- it became a part of me.

It may even inspire me to unhiatus again. How could I not continue my Stoppard-esque career? (Who the hell is Stoppard, and how does he rate a Q like that? I'd like a Q. Someday someone will refer to some poor schmuck as Toonbots-esque.)

Seriously: Thanks, man. That made my week.

Chris Fri Feb 11 23:26:03 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> I'd like a Q.

"Eaten any good books lately?"

Michael Fri Feb 11 23:47:35 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> "Eaten any good books lately?"

I should have said Romulan. Klingon dog!

Looking back over my inverse hiatus in August, that was some pretty funky stuff I was smoking there for a while. I have to get the lead out. Again.

My favorite line:

Kid, we found your name on a Siberian hamster at the bottom of half a ton of Web cartoonists, and just wanted to know if you had any information about it.

See, now that's comedy GOLD, man!

Chris Sat Feb 12 16:32:50 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> Looking back over my inverse hiatus in August, that was some pretty funky
> stuff I was smoking there for a while. I have to get the lead out. Again.

Who needs to smoke when you can have the great flavor of new D& Patent-Pending Reduced-Asbestos Ant Snuff?

So, where can I get one of those golden Faberge hamsters of yours?

spinclad Sat Feb 19 18:52:00 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> Who needs to smoke when you can have the great flavor of new D&�
> Patent-Pending Reduced-Asbestos Ant Snuff?

Asbestos reduced? Wimp! Know you not you need fear no suit no more? By this should know all presents that there is no danger in the substance! Enjoy the full-bodied taste of Ant Snuff Old, with extra asbestos sprinkles even!

[For full honour in consumption the outcome must be doubt: two enter; but one returns.]

Michael Sat Feb 19 19:31:03 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> See, now that's comedy GOLD, man!

So good, I reused it.

mouse Mon Feb 14 19:59:06 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> What a coooool review on comixpedia.com! Thanks! I laughed, I cried -- it
> became a part of me.

> It may even inspire me to unhiatus again. How could I not continue my
> Stoppard-esque career? (Who the hell is Stoppard, and how does he rate a Q
> like that? I'd like a Q. Someday someone will refer to some poor schmuck
> as Toonbots-esque.)

> Seriously: Thanks, man. That made my week.

well, lord e. is all our heros. (the hero of us all? the one whom all of us hold as hero? ...i should maybe get some sleep). anyway - when next he appears in toonbots, i believe you should provide him with a cape. and a really cool cane.

but clearly, you need more practice with this sort of thing. if you are going to boast of your reviews, you must provide a link.

and stoppard, among other things, wrote rosencrantz and guildenstern are dead. a _classic_, man - just _classic_.

and i am rather taken with purple county-by-county america. it looks like a fish wrapped up in a spider web.

i'm sure you immediately appreciate the symbolic possibilities.

(and condolences to lenin on his pixilation. there's a lot of nasty stuff going around this year)

Emsworth the Humble Tue Feb 15 01:37:55 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> well, lord e. is all our heros. (the hero of us all? the one whom all of
> us hold as hero? ...i should maybe get some sleep). anyway - when next he
> appears in toonbots, i believe you should provide him with a cape. and a
> really cool cane.

I wish I could find my cane. It's lost in the garage somewhere. I'm glad I no longer need it, but it still makes a great prop.

> but clearly, you need more practice with this sort of thing. if you are
> going to boast of your reviews, you must provide a link.

Your wish is my command, oh mistress of the blue horizons: http://www.comixpedia.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=article&sid=2117

Sent in back in December, thus the opening situating it as a year-end piece, but held back to fit the "experimental" comics theme (and sadly the only article, it seems, from the latest issue to have no comments whatsoever). For more of my purple prose, by the way, go to www.graphicnovelreview.com, while the most recent issue is still up (the editor has fallen behind due to technical ModernTales issues and trying to get Will Eisner tribute pieces in). If it has been archives, though, it's the January one, and the piece in question is a review of the latest Oscar Wilde adaptation (part of a series) by P. Craig Russell (a piece on Charles Vess's Book of Ballads, with contributions by Gaiman, Jeff Smith, Sharyn McCrumb and others, will be forthcoming at some point).

> and stoppard, among other things, wrote rosencrantz and guildenstern are
> dead. a _classic_, man - just _classic_.

His most famous work, but really, the sheer number of his (mostly comic) plays that deal with historical/fictional characters and motifs, inverting them, breaking walls, etc. are what led me to make the comparison. And note I made the point in that context, in terms of using Shakespeare and Lenin etc., not in terms of your overall career. Though you could do worse than emulate him. Apart from many awards and fame and money from the stage plays, he's done some screenwriting, most notably winning the Academy Award in 1999 for Shakespeare in Love (which whether you liked the movie or not, is a very good example of a pre-Toonbots co-opting and altering a historical character's circumstances and personality and other details for comic effect, though certainly less radical).

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, though I would hope you're familiar with it (I think you referenced it on Case Yorke's forum long ago, or someone else did, so perhaps you just forgot the author) is a slightly Beckett-esque (and please dopn't ask who he is!) inversion of Hamlet, but apart from the skewed perspective and the characters as both observers, sort of, of the central drama and unwilling participants, their general confusion, lack of purpose, feeling of being manipulated, not sure if they're playing a role or not, and discourses with each other are not unlike the situation of the dot.

The Real Inspector Hound, another Stoppard favorite, analyzed in depth by me in a long ago post, is a takeoff of mystery plays, especially Agatha Christie's Mousetrap (no, not you, my friend!) but situates it as being watched by two critics, who over-analyze the play, then become sucked into it as players. The similarity to Toonbots lies in both the overly intellectual, pompous pronouncements in the blurbs, but in the inclusion of the author and Jihad as characters, breaking the fourth wall.

Finally, though if I had time and energy (still tired from LA trip, which was immediately followed by illness only recently recovered from, and yet still coughing rather heavily), there's Travesties. This play again uses a familiar text as its source material (and though Toonbots certainly has its own creative flow, from the Seussian rhythms to Pokey to Alice's Restaurant to the POTC and other film refs, and so on, Toonbots is very intertextual and reliant on low [and occasionally high] culture), Wilde's Importance of Being Ernest, shaping the reminiscences of a now senile minor civil servant. This person was an actual individual, living and working in Zurich at the same time as James Joyce, the Dadaist poet Tristan Tzara, and most relevantly, our own beloved Vladimir Ilyich Lenin were living there. Thus, Stoppard concocts a romantic comedy in which all of the personages collide, though Lenin has more of a background role and is generally played straight, unlike our beloved, entrepeneurial Len. However, both Tzara and especially Joyce are twisted, Joyce essentially becoming Lady Bracknell from Earnest, for purposes of humor and surrealism.

> (and condolences to lenin on his pixilation. there's a lot of nasty stuff
> going around this year)

At least he's not coughing up blood (though it wasn't very much and only that one day, amidst the phlegm, but enough to disconcert me).

More posting when I feel up to it.

Michael Tue Feb 15 10:23:10 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!

> immediately followed by illness only recently recovered from, and yet
> still coughing rather heavily

I had that, yeah. It made the rounds rather dramatically in our family. My wife's still coughing irritatingly, I mean, irritatEDly of course.

My condolences.

> Toonbots is very
> intertextual

Cool. This is part of my master plan, of course.

1. Write code.
2. Devise very intertextual Web comic.
3. ????
4. PROFIT!

In re the rest of your very illuminating post: if this city had a library, I'd be visiting it forthwith. But much of this text may well be online, one hopes.

mouse Sat Feb 19 00:23:11 2005
Re: Lord Emsworth, you're my hero!


> Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, though I would hope you're familiar with it seen a couple productions of this one. one of the things i remember is the confusion of the main characters, who have a sense that a story is going on around them, but they can't seem to get more information than their own small role. although this may be more pertinant to a strip like triangle and robert.

> The Real Inspector Hound, another Stoppard favorite, this one i haven't seen, and i really want to. don't know that i've even been able to find a published version - although reading a play is really not like seeing it. well, various other things get revived - surely someone will get onto classic stoppard.

> At least he's not coughing up blood (though it wasn't very much and only
> that one day, amidst the phlegm, but enough to disconcert me). oh dear - well, that makes me feel a bit better about the cough i've had for....9 weeks now? at least it's only been coughing. hope you get over it quickly.






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