There are some works of art, some works of fiction, that just make me plain angry, some more than others. I mean, to take an example from this blog, The Boy Who Dreamed Christmas ticked me off quite greatly, since it not only had everything I hate about children’s media, but had quite the iffy “moral” to it too. There are some works I hate because of its quality (or lack thereof), some I hate because of its message, and some I might very well hate because of its creator.
So You’re A Cartoonist, a webcomic by Tom Preston, fills all three categories.
If there’s any way I can describe Tom Preston, it’s that he may very well be the incarnation of everything wrong with the internet. He not only once drew inflation fetish art when in his early twenties, he did so while pretending to be a sixteen-year-old girl, and has desperately attempted to erase that element of his past to no avail. He has a university degree in animation, and yet has never really been able to put it to good use. He claims to loathe anime yet his art rips off every anime there is. His “job” is drawing art for a shitty video game webcomic. Every time someone gives him criticism, he blocks them, ignores them, gets into fights with them and then attempts to elicit pity parties from his fans. And yes, he does have fans.
But am I in any position to criticise him? Granted, I admit to having problems with my attitude and my maturity – this blog alone is proof enough of that – and Preston is actually probably a better artist than I am. But Preston’s claim to fame on the internet is that he is the ultimate cautionary tale for creatives – don’t do what he does or you’ll be sorry. Really, even if you forget all his history as written above, just one strip of his webcomic So You’re A Cartoonist will make you want to punch that smug smile off of his face.
Though he has ended this webcomic (and tried to reboot it with minimal success), So You’re A Cartoonist still reveals him as the smug, arrogant little prick he is. Here is a list of his worst comics:
So You’re A Cartoonist is supposed to be a webcomic for cartoonists, poking fun at the frustrations and the quirks cartoonists have. Not only is this a bad idea, as it means he has a pretty limited audience, he doesn’t even do a good job with his subject matter. Oh, artists make the faces they’re drawing on their characters? That’s a pretty damn common observation; as far as jokes about creativity go, it’s “airplane food” level stuff. And that’s the level of humour we’re dealing with in this comic. Whenever there is humour, that is.
Do you remember when I said this was a webcomic for cartoonists? I was lying, this is a webcomic meant to appease Tom Preston and him alone. Yes, the main character is meant to be an avatar of old Prestie himself. OK, no-one likes getting criticism, but it is necessary for creatives to improve on their work. This strip is portraying the criticizer as some uppity over-analyser and Preston as some merry loveable rapscallion. It’s Preston that’s being the jackass here, yet we’re supposed to sympathise with him.
And oh look. Here’s another comic where he’s right and everyone else is wrong. Someone complains about his comic and it’s because they’re an idiot incapable of understanding the complexity of his marvellous works. He writes ‘a serious look into gay and lesbian relationships’, but the ignorant masses want mindless yuri. The thing is, from what I’ve read of Patty, it’s just as wooden and dull as this comic, and for a “serious” comic utilises a lot of goofy manga crap. Let’s also not forget this as well. Yep, that’s his idea of being progressive. And just wait until you see this next strip…
Even without the childish punchline of the 3D comic up top, this one is still a doozy. Preston fancies himself a crusader for nerds, pointing out how a calm Trekkie is so much better than them dumb old jocks. He seems to be stuck in the mindset of an 80’s high school movie…and maybe that’s his problem. He thinks his life is a movie, his critics are the sneering villains and he’s the misunderstood underdog.
See what I mean? Bullying is shit, but it’s one of those things you have to learn to get over, so that juvenile response to that friend request does not make you admirable.
Look at how he tries to paint himself as wacky and fun. Miranda this is not.
This…this is simply reprehensible.
Yes, that’s right. The man is so selfish, so narrow-minded, he wrote a comic, he seriously wrote a comic, about the Colorado Dark Knight Rises shooting and how annoyed he is that he can’t talk about Dark Knight Rises without having to bring up the shooting. He trivialises the deaths and casualties of the incident by treating them as minor inconveniences that he has to vent about.
It isn’t like the Titanic because the Titanic sunk a hundred years ago and the shooting happened last year. Talking about a political candidate’s bad points is something you should do, and let’s face it, the only reason you put that in was to trick your readers into thinking you actually give a shit about politics. And you really, really think a tragedy like that is akin to a bad movie?
Didn’t you even think before you wrote this comic, Dobson? He claims he did in this journal, but all it amounts to is saying ‘DUR DUR YOU DIDN’T GET IT.’ Fuck you. You deserve the hate that comes your way, and you have no-one to blame but yourself for having it. Deal with it.