Webcomics offer a very low barrier of entry and instant feedback
, but most humans will not continue to draw something or at least try to improve if people hate it. How do you suppose these webcomics managed to continue onwards in spite of this? Someone
out there has to like 'em, but we're still looking for those (other than the authors/artists themselves) who'll come forward and admit it.
: Merely being offensive in its subject matter is insufficient. Hard as it is to imagine at times, there is a market for all types of deviancy (no matter how small a niche it is). It has to fail to appeal even to that niche
to qualify as this.
Second Important Note:
A webcomic isn't horrible just because The Bad Webcomics Wiki
, The Webcomic Relief
or any other Caustic Critic
reviewed it. There needs to be independent evidence, such as actual, professional pannings, to list it. (Though once it is listed, they can provide the detailed review(s).)
Examples (more-or-less in alphabetical order):
- Angel Warrior Comics is a good example of the reason Sprite Comics are so hated. It has the usual recolored sprites, illegible text, and clashing background. It began as a gag strip, but then created an incomprehensible story. It's no surprise that the author abandoned it in March 2003, although the last strip is the author vehemently saying the webcomic is not canned and will be updated in a month or so.
- Billy the Heretic is widely considered to be the worst webcomic on the internet. It's an allegedly-autobiographical work about a young boy who was adopted by a "rich international Jewish" family. The writing is identical to, if not dumber than, what you'd find sifting through Stormfront (quite fitting, as the webpage bears a link to it). The artwork is spectacularly awful — there's not a shred of color anywhere, backgrounds are never anything beyond blank white stretches, and every character is poorly drawn. Special mention goes to the characters, all of whom are overblown caricatures or stereotypes. And the sad thing is, the comic makes it clear the reader is supposed to like Billy, but makes no effort to portray him as anything but a spoiled brat with extremist political views.
- D-Generation Sex. What, precisely, makes this so bad? Is it the "doodles in the notebook margins in fourth period"-level "art"? The relentlessly-juvenile nature of what passes for humor? The comic's base gimmick, shamelessly ripped from a WWE angle that had (at the time of the comic's debut) been dead for over a decade? The first (and so far only) storyline consisting of the three main characters defeating an alien invasion by superkicking the aliens' leader? All of the above?
- Seems to be a Stealth Parody of what a middle-schooler might find funny. Speaking of the "doodles in the notebook margins" comment, the earlier strips were literally on a scholastic lined-paper background. Whether this is enough to redeem it is up to the reader.
- Faith Mouse is sort of a funny case. It's an evangelical Christian website that appears to be of the opinion that True Art Is Incomprehensible. Seriously, this probably sets a record when it comes to the sheer level of baffling. And yet while reading it, one gets the feeling that it would be entirely offensive if one actually could figure out what the hell it's talking about.
- Faith Mouse is by Dan Lacey, who is now more famous for paintings of things like a nude Barack Obama on a unicorn, Obama in a Vault Boy outfit, and Sarah Palin (and various other political figures across the spectrum) with a pancake on their heads, often naked. Also, he was taken to court by Birther Orly Taitz for a painting of her giving birth to a pancake. So it's likely the baffling absurdity of Faith Mouse was at least partially deliberate.
- Lacey had a most unlikely relationship with the debate and discussion subforum at Something Awful circa 2008. Against all expectations, given the content of Faith Mouse, he responded cordially and patiently to being called out as a Christian lunatic. He rapidly won over the forum and they became fans and customers, encouraging his more bizarre election-time work and not bugging him about his personal beliefs. He was, in the goons' view, a terrific artist and total madman — someone worthy of support rather than scorn.
- Gamer Chicks follows Suiren, a hyperactive Yaoi Fangirl who plays too many video games, and Kirei, her snarky level-headed roommate. They discuss video games and have wacky misadventures. Solid enough premise, right? Wrong. Most strips are about Suiren doing one of three things:
- "Assuring" the viewer that she "totally is a girl and totally plays video games deal with it you silly boy".
- Obsessing over homosexual pairings of video game characters, while assuming anyone who thinks she's strange for talking about it to complete strangers in public "must be crazy or stupid".
- Having to fend off silly boys who are only interested in her "boobies".
- Girlz 'n Games, much like Gamer Chicks, is a comic exploring the "comedy" that comes from girls liking geeky things and playing video games. The jokes are stale, poorly delivered, and unfunny (such as references to Portal's cake jokes about two years late), many jokes are misogynisticnote , and the art's flat and underwhelming.
- The comic was discovered by 4Chan and Something Awful, with the predictable result of several comments left on the website ranging from constructive criticism to outright insults. Most strikingly is how people have compared the comic to Ctrl+Alt+Del due to the use of backgrounds copied from Google Images, lazy artwork which has seen no improvement since it began, the use of the same facial expressions, poor joke delivery and terrible dialogue, obvious sexism and also complaints about the author's ego getting in the way of real improvements and accepting any constructive criticism, resulting in her being labelled as Tim Buckley's Distaff Counterpart.
- Hathor the Cow Goddess revolves around real-life naturalist feminist Heather Cushman-Dowdee in a cow mask and bottle-nipple hat preaching her views on child-rearing, healthcare, and public as well as long-term breastfeeding. The comic only shows tolerance for Hathor's own views and demonizes anyone that advocates modern medicine, formula feeding, or sending your kids to school as an abusive parent. The author, essentially a hippie helicopter mom crossed with a Bizarro liberal Jack Chick, has earned the enmity of many an amateur Egyptologist for re-purposing a cool goddess for her deranged views.
- There's a parody comic in which she accidentally suffocates her infant son by letting him sleep in bed with her. Rumor has it that the parody was made by her older son, whom she promptly disowned.
- The comic's dead, replaced by a link to Mama Is..., which is just as bad.
- Jenffer´s Show, a possible Troll Fic by a user at the old 789chan, combines hideous and poorly made artwork (which is bad enough to make the art from Sweet Bro and Hella Jeff look beautiful and detailed in comparison) with an unintelligible plot where it is very hard to understand what is going on in most of the pages. The dialogue constantly includes grammar mistakes (and on some pages, it becomes literally unreadable due the small and confusing handwriting). Pretty much like Sonichu it doesn't seem to know its target audience, and despite being around the web since around 2010 (though the author appears to have been making it for decades), it hasn't show any signs of improvement. The only reason anybody goes easy on it is because the creator apparently is severely developmentally disabled.
- Kansas O'Flaherty, Secret Agent was a weekly strip for four months on Salon.com. Every episode was greeted by a string of reader comments complaining about pretentious cultural references, bad artwork, inconsistent lettering, occasional misspelled words, non-sequiturs, and general lack of a coherent plot. The strip's few defenders generally explained it as an experiment in anti-humor designed to provoke strong reactions from readers.
- Kit 'n' Kay Boodle is a very, very Not Safe for Work webcomic which stars a large cast of animals yiffing in public all the time in a creepily cartoonish Mary Suetopia. The listing at Author Tract is a good summary — "It is entirely a vehicle for Richard Katellis' views on free love, yiffing, and the plight of the furry community. The world outside of idyllic, nudist Yiffburg is full of monstrous dictatorships and ruthless capitalist states that criticize Yiffburg for being horny layabouts. Any character who doesn't constantly want sex with total strangers is either an evil fascist or a repressed soul, and the answer is invariably anonymous sex, either to defeat or convert them to the yiffy way of life." One character even looks like a giant penis.note The strip is drawn in a cutesy-poo cartoonish style, turning any possible erotic content into extra-strength Fetish Retardant. All sorts of horridness abounds, including a Fantastic Drug which acts as both an aphrodisiac and contraceptive, immodest orgasms, Parental Incest, Rape as Redemption...and none of the Yiffburgians even bother to work because exporting the berries is enough to sustain their economy. There's also some Unfortunate Implications about the way the Fantastic Drug works - it comes in two colors, indicating which sex is supposed to eat which berry...but the "bottoms" of gay male couples eat the berries meant for women. Um...
- Lessons in Distraction, by the author of Gamer Chicks, is just as bad and possibly even worse — a blatant Self Insert comic where the main character falls in love with an obvious Expy of Sephiroth. The art's worse than Gamer Chicks since it's all black and white, muddling the actions even more. The main character's harassed brutally by the Alpha Bitch for no real reason, cheese is once again used as a lazy stand-in for crowds, and a confusing plot involving the two main characters turning into animal-things is introduced and dropped. It appears to be a desperate effort from the author to gain sympathy for her "dark and depressing" life. The comic stopped updating in August 2008, to the bereavement of nobody.
- Mandatory Fun Day, a comic The Daily WTF ran for several weeks. Season 1 featured poor artwork, cut-and-paste characters, anemic writing, and humor so thin you could see through it; it was even colored in an eye-searing MS-Paint style. Season 2 redeemed it somewhat, but the general distaste and endless mockery toward the comic led to it being removed.
- The only humor to be found was usually the re-edited strips found in the comments. After some time, the comic's author started acknowledging the best-edited versions of the previous comic in each post. Not sure what that says about his attitude towards his own comic...
- Motherfuckin' Mario is considered by the few who have actually read it to be the worst sprite comic in history... despite never even passing seven comics. This could be attributed to the fact that it is one of the most disgusting things you will ever read. It's eye-searingly ugly even by the low standards of sprite comics, almost everyone is terminally out of character, the one character that isn't (Luigi) is frequently killed and tortured, and the whole experience just isn't funny... unless, that is, you consider Mario keeping Birdo as a sex slave and accidentally killing her because he overcharged her shock collar or Bowser overdosing on Viagra until his penis explodes to be funny. Seriously. There's no punchlines in sight. Just pure, condensed, unfiltered offensiveness that would be enough to disgust even Trey Parker and Matt Stone.
- My Little School (no connection with My Little Pony) would have remained in obscurity had it not been for the fact that the creator frequents the forums on Deviant ART, and it should have remained there because of how awful it is. The dialogue is poorly worded, the artwork is barely above elementary school-level, the characters are flat and unlikeable, and the comic tries to be dramatic but fails miserably. What you end up getting is a product so sub-par, it makes My Life Me look good in comparison. And don't get us started on the creator's response to criticism.
- One-Frame Gags, an obscure webcomic that ran a little under a year from September 2012 to July 2013, had terrible artwork, unfunny "gags", and way too many terrible puns. The only thing it has going for it is that David Morgan-Mar actually wrote a guest strip for it. The creator became a Square Root of Minus Garfield creator after it ended and made some slightly better strips.
- The now thankfully defunct Shredded Moose is/was, along with being irredeemably offensive, devoid of humor or any point behind its misogyny. The artwork is somewhat competent, though an obvious rip-off of Penny Arcade's style and often glaringly unrealistic where female anatomy is concerned. This comic was a Two Gamers on a Couch comic about two fratboy gamers. A backwards hat wearing Totally Radical "Alpha Male" named Brew, who represented the writer, and, representing the artist, Trip, a youngster fratboy who looked up to Brew. Together they were Mary Sue protagonists to the extreme. The average comic strip was always about either Brew one upping their strawman targets with a talking point followed by violence, or having sex with multiple women, and all the women in the series were either bimbos, Orcs (if feminists), or Lesbians (if they did not want to have sex with Brew). This made Brew an aggressively unlikable Jerkass character who epitomizes the worst of the Fratire genre without any of its redeeming qualities. The comic made a poorly executed attempt at Cerebus Syndrome by dealing with a character's past, witnessing her mother being raped. This was intended as serious and gave Shredded Moose some well needed character development but perhaps it was too late. This, combined with every other comic seeming to be a Filler strip of a nude girl (even in the middle of storylines!), made the comic even less readable toward the end. Mercifully, it seems to have finally died. The domain name expired, and the creators have made no effort to find a new site. Still the memory of such a comic scars the minds of many a critic forevermore. While we in some ways regret having almost no evidence of such a comic existing, save for few scraps on the internet, and the words of critics left in its wake, we inform you that the internet, however, takes solace that such a comic is finally gone...
- Single Asian Female: The dialogue is so badly written that it would be painful to read even if it wasn't overwhelmingly racist. The author stated that this was intentional, and was probably trying to portray racism against East Asians... but instead exposed himself as racist against non-Asians through ethnocentrism ("Asians should marry other Asians! White men are creepy and all have an Asian fetish!").
- Reading the comic makes it seem far less like an Anvilicious anti-racism screed gone wrong, and more like a racist complaining that he can't get a date because "all the good Asian sisters are dating white guys". The way the "married a white guy" friend of the main character refers to Asian guys as "abusive, sexist losers" seems an awful lot like the author had been on the receiving end of that comment himself.
- Unsurprisingly, the webcomic was taken down. Encyclopedia Dramatica has an article on it, with many of the strips contained. Their analysis, when not blatantly false, is not particularly exaggerated. Oh, Internet has an article on it as well, also with strips and with more serious analysis.
- To make matters worse, other racists started using this comic to justify their racism towards Asians. note
- Sonichu is the purest form of Bile Fascination condensed into a single webcomic, and nothing else can be said here that the rest of the Internet hasn't already covered through rants, reviews, parodies, spoofs, articles, and even an entire wiki. The comic lacks even the most basic aspects of creativity, artistry, composition, sense of proportion or comedic timing. Its reliance on hackneyed exposition reaches ridiculous levels, as sometimes entire pages are dominated by impenetrable walls of text that explain the events instead of showing them. It also contains some of the worst Protagonist Centred Morality in all of fiction. Jokes, ideas, character concepts, and entire plotlines are all either flagrantly plagiarized or an obvious attempt at venting the author's spleen. It didn't seem to know its target audience (childish plots and humor were combined with unsettling violence and graphic sex), it had pretty much no set schedule by the time it finally stopped updating in February 2010, and devolved into a self-righteous, disturbing vanity project in later issues.
- Stalag '99, authored by Kelly "STrRedWolf" Price, focuses on the adventures of a hermaphrodite wolf-skunk hybrid furry. Not only is the artwork rather stiff, the dialogue's horrific and the site layout is very outdated. Despite copying and pasting panels constantly, the strip also suffers from frequent Schedule Slip.
- And to make matters worse, despite the fact that the comic started in 1999, it has shown very little improvement in the art department even after 10 years.
- THe FReCKLeD FINGeR has a very good, professional art style. Too bad it's aggressively unfunny, needlessly offensive, and as spiteful as humanly possible. The bald-faced contempt for all that feels joy is clear in the writing, making every single strip a soul-crushing experience in and of itself. It's often described as "Cyanide and Happiness if it took itself dead seriously".
- WarMage (On hiatus since 2009) is an MS Paint-spawned harem porn monstrosity covered in a hash of superhero (in)action, Twenty Minutes into the Future cyberpunk, and whatever Wicca and Hindu mysticism the author feels like tossing in. Bad enough on its own, but the author decided to clone it for different genres — Monster Lover (a mishmash of RPG Elements) and A Call To Destiny (a mishmash of RPG elements in space!).
- For extra funtimes, the antagonists of WarMage tend to be assorted flavors of Judeo-Christian fundamentalists.
- The creator also had a fourth comic that breaks the pattern, but is otherwise just as bad: Shadow Root - which is basically Fifty Shades Of Gray meets Urban Fantasy.