Webcomic Shortpacked Discussion

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02:59:52 PM Apr 22nd 2014
It seems that the links were linked at different times in the site's history: Some work, some don't.
10:24:41 AM Jun 10th 2013
Say have you ever wondered why Dave Willis tends to exaggerate anyone who disagrees with him? I mean I like the comic, dislike the social justice stuff but I move past it. But why is it that anyone who has a alternative view than his is going to be presented as a white, fat, neckbearded male loser?

I'm all for addressing alternate views, but isn't giving them some decent points, acknowledging them, and not exaggerating those who disagree a great way to give your view weight? Show that it holds up under scrutiny?

I guess it could just be me though.
11:02:47 AM Jun 10th 2013
They're strawmen. The point of a strawman is to not let them have decent points to make their POV look worse. Though you have a good point, making the strawmen look like strawmen seems like a bad idea.

Although I seem to recall a lot of tall, skinny strawmen too.
11:12:15 AM Jun 10th 2013
That is true. I still think even putting a strawman into something meant to be taken seriously in the first place is just a bad idea.

Sadly if I was to ever suggest that to Willis he'd probably instantly make me a strawman instead.
01:01:37 PM Apr 4th 2013
There's an edit war going on over this example:

  • Author Filibuster: While Willis' views are normally worked into the narrative of the strip, there are occasions where they dramatically shift the focus of the strip entirely:
    • When a point needs to be made about American politics, the storylines shift from being about misadventures at the titular toystore to becoming almost political satire in Washington DC. This tends to happen around elections, naturally.
    • One comic was presented as a blog post by Ethan, espousing Willis' complaints about fans' constant disappointment with touched up prototype shots compared to production figures. No joke, just a shift to a one-issue Author Tract.
Fairly frequent, but most noticeably whenever politics comes up (Republicans are not portrayed well in the least) and Willis' views on fandoms (most infamously a "post" by Ethan espousing Willis' views on fandoms' expectations on prototype figures).

Hash it out here.
01:16:39 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Larkmarn
Just would like to point out we were about to take it to the discussion page, and I think that we were both handling it fairly civilly. But thank you for beating me to the punch.


So... I'm not sure why interrupting the (ostensibly a character-based humor strip) comic strips with an Author Tract isn't considered an Author Filibuster. Specifically, the edit reason that it's only one strip seems irrelevant. It's still long enough to halt the strip since it's just Ethan making a message board post for an entire strip. Other webcomics-based examples include single-strip Author Filibuster examples. 0
01:20:17 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Thecommander236
Did you bring it to Ask The Tropers?

EDIT: Lark, you're a ninja...
01:27:48 PM Apr 4th 2013
Well, thank you, first and foremost, and I feel you're being fairly civil too.

The thing about the use of Character Filibuster there's nothing to halt, and even if there was it doesn't do it for long. It's no more a filibuster than a two-minute speech in Congress is a filibuster.

If other webcomics-based examples use single strip examples I'd be perfectly willing to argue that they, too, are misusing the trope based on the description given on its page.

Similarly, an Author Tract is when the entire comic is there for no other reason than as a soapbox for the author. I don't feel that term applies either.
01:28:20 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by TwinBird
I'd say Ethan's blog post is certainly an Author Filibuster, and probably many of the Cutaway Gags as well (my fingers keep wanting to type "cutaway Gaga"), but the political stories less so. Author Tract, sure, but they're not really an "interruption," since we still are dealing with the same characters. Not every strip has to take place at the toy store.
01:36:32 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Wackd
Except they come when there's no plot to halt, as it went up amongst a bunch of gag strips.

I think perhaps we're misinterpreting what filibuster means. It's when you begin talking nonstop and at length to the determent of everything else, so that people will have cave to your ideas before they can move on. If we spend weeks on end with Willis writing comics about how dumb toy fans are, with absolutely nothing that deviates to break it up, that would be an Author Filibuster—not just by the definition of the trope, but by the definition of the word in its title. A singular comic can no more be a filibuster than a paragraph in a novel.
01:41:33 PM Apr 4th 2013
The idea is of a long speech, interrupting the action, not a series of strips within a strip. Taking up an entire strip counts as "long," but no matter how many strips it takes, a silly bit of political satire in a silly, sometimes story-driven comic doesn't qualify as a speech.
01:42:43 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Wackd
I don't necessarily agree that the Washington stuff is a filibuster. But I felt that Larkman made the case well and I can see his prospective. There's a change in location, a change in general focus and subject matter, and a sudden plot twist to get us there, and it all seems to be in the service of talking about politics. To me, it's understandable why someone might list it.

But I am having immense trouble figuring out how a single gag strip amongst a sea of generally unrelated gag strips qualifies as a "filibuster". I don't care how much text is in it, or how seriously it takes itself. It doesn't stop the comic from proceeding as normal when the next update roles around.
01:57:41 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Larkmarn
Thanks Wackd, I appreciate it. I also get that the burden of proof is on me so I hope I can convince you.

My point is that it's not a "gag" strip, it's an out of place, strip-long Author Tract. Other gag-a-day comics have examples listed that are similar (VG Cats on the Author Filibuster page, for example). The jokes stopped so that Walky can air his grievances about the fandom.

It doesn't stop the comic from proceeding as normal when the next update rolls around, sure, but it stops the comic from proceeding as normal for that entire strip. It's not worked into the narrative, it doesn't move the plot or characters forward at all. There's no denying that. Now, maybe the VG Cats is a bad example and I shouldn't follow it. But as far as I can see, it fits the trope description and laconic.

EDIT: Geez Louise, I didn't expect so many people to beat me to responding. Hahaha.
02:16:23 PM Apr 4th 2013
edited by Wackd
Well, then, list it under Author Tract*. If you want to list anything that's not worked into the narrative or moves the characters forward as an Author Filibuster, than that makes every single gag strip in the entire archives a series of Author Filibusters on different topics, which I don't think works.

And "it's not funny" isn't really a qualifier, I don't think. Funniness isn't anywhere in the definition of the trope. None of your qualifiers are. A cartoonist expressing their opinion in their comic isn't the same thing as them spending weeks or months building up the same point in a way that everything else grinds to a halt.

* Actually, don't, since Author Tract doesn't work either. That's when the author feels making a point is more important than telling a story, and that's clearly not going on here.
05:20:25 PM Jun 17th 2012
edited by DrPsyche
I propose to delete the character descriptions and start a character page. Need to know if we should do this. Several things to consider
  • I have no idea how to create a character page.
  • Should the page encompass all of the walkyverse?
    • How do we get both the walkyverse pages and Shortpack's to go to the same character page link?
    • Should we include the Dumbing of age character Tropes? or just create a new character page for them?
08:01:26 AM Nov 6th 2012
Hey, so I'm working on that now. I feel like we should start small. The entire Walkyverse is a lot to cover.

Dumbing of Age has its own page and its own character tropes, so yeah, that should be on its own.
11:20:28 AM Jun 8th 2012
meaningful name should be in there. Leslie Bean sounds alot like lesbian.
02:00:35 PM Mar 20th 2012
I dunno if the Celebrity Paradox thing works. After all, Willis exists also and is shown setting up booths at Comic Con—booths with suspiciously similar but not exact webcomic titles on them. It's entirely possible Milholland writes a comic called Something Negative in the Walkyverse, which had its own crossover with Short Pants!
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