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Webcomic / The Back o' Beyond

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Worse things happen at sea.

The Back o' Beyond is a fantasy/romance comic by Jon Walker, known online as JammyTheBirb. It began in June 2016, and centres around Nathaniel Jones and Sebastian Worthington, two unfortunate young men who find themselves press-ganged and taken hostage by a pirate crew, respectively.

The pirates are looking for a powerful spring which can grant eternal life to the holder of a certain amulet. Nate and Sebastian must keep this requirement a secret for the time being, to ensure Seb's safety.

The comic updates on Thursdays, and can be read on ComicFury here, and on Tapas here. In 2020, the comic was accepted into the Spiderforest webcomics collective.

The comic now has a trailer on youtube.

The Back o' Beyond provides Examples of:

  • Art Shift: The first interlude is drawn in a sketchy, more painterly style with a limited palette. The second interlude also uses a limited palette, and pencil textures.
  • Bookworm: Seb has been seen reading quite a bit.
  • Can't Kill You, Still Need You: Nate points out to the Captain that Sebastian has valuable information about the spring they are hunting, thus convincing him to spare his life.
  • Constructed World: Fashion and environment call early 18th century Europe to mind, but the author has decided to place the story in a world of its own to have more freedom in writing, especially with the fantasy aspects.
  • Dem Bones: One of the pirates, Baines, is a lich.
  • Disappeared Dad: Nate's father, Davy, drowned before the comic begins, contributing to Nate's fear of the ocean.
  • Dressed to Plunder: The pirates all have some elements of this. Sebastian, initially dressed very proper, has to adapt after becoming a part of the crew.
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Sairith is one for England or Britain in general.
  • Funny Foreigner: Sawbones has a somewhat goofy demeanour, and once referred to Baines as 'dearly department'.
  • Hereditary Curse: Nate is assumed to have this; because his grandfather and father both have died on the sea, each being on board of a ship that sank, no fisher wants to give Nate work aboard their ships.
  • My Beloved Smother: Nate's mam Annie shows some signs of this, though she also gets him a job so he can learn to stand on his own feet.
  • Odd Friendship: It's not revealed yet how Annie, a fishmonger, came to be friends with mermaid Stanza.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Sawbones is only ever referred to by his job title.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Nate likes knitting, though, as he points out, it's also a useful craft.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Nate is more rash and emotional, whilst Sebastian is The Stoic.
  • Smug Snake: Blue Finlay, the resident bully.
    • Over time, he also thaws a bit around Nate, surprising him with a consoling hug after they both got beaten up by the other pirates.
  • Sweet Polly Oliver: One of the pirates is actually Blue Finlay's childhood friend, Twigs. Also, as turns out, Sawbones, whose actual name is Cat.
  • Talk Like a Pirate: Strangely, only Nate and his mam seem to speak this way. None of the pirates have this accent.