Webcomics are a very variable breed. With no editorial control, the author can do whatever they want, unconstrained by commercial demands, for better or for worse. A large number, if not most of them, are frankly either crap or self-indulgent. So Kate Beaton’s Hark, A Vagrant makes a pleasant change. It’s broadly based around history, but beyond that pretty well anything goes. Put it this way, one strip involves Kepler asking “What if the Earth revolves around the sun?” with Tycho’s reply being, “What if your wife revolves around my dick?” It’s simultaneously both highbrow and lowbrow, intelligent and yet laugh-out-loud funny.
There are few recurring characters other than an Ebonics-speaking John Paul II and a constantly cookie-munching Napoleon Bonaparte. The author herself crops up a few times but, unlike most comic creators who write about themselves, does not make you hate her. That’s probably because the strips are less “Oh how awful my life is oh how I suffer” and more “Oh dammit Diogenes is living in my dustbin.”
My excuse for writing this entry is a recent strip, part of which you can see on the left. You may recall some entries back I wrote about the myths surrounding Sherlock Holmes (https://londonparticulars.wordpress.com/2009/06/21/yo-holmes/). Well, this is basically a strip about that, entitled ‘The Case of the Two Watsons’. So that’s why I’m talking about a comic that has very little to do with London on a blog that theoretically is all about London.
Anyway, that’s about it. Good comic, me like, at http://www.harkavagrant.com/index.php. Enjoy.