Quick - what do you get when you cross a high-fantasy pub with a slapstick sense of humor and Saturday-morning-cartoon visuals? You get a damn good time, which is one of the better descriptions of Craig Munro's "The Pig's Ear" you could come up with. The Pig's Ear is a webcomic about the hectic life and times of the staff and regulars at the titular pub. The main cast consists of Barkeep, a man of self-descriptive title, Gwen, the recently-hired barmaid, Angus, the dwarfish ex-adventurer chef, and Cyril, an alcoholic wizard who is the regular of regulars at the Ear. Other characters come and go as the joke requires; one of the main recurring side characters is an unnamed fellow of ill-defined but furry species who seems to have struck up some kind of rivalry with Cyril.
Craig rose to internet fame running the circuits of DeviantArt's "Original Character Battle Tournaments". He started out slinging Cyril around; later, he added a Cloud Cuckoolander robot named Murphy to his repertoire (Murphy is unrelated to The Pig's Ear, though-time will tell what Craig plans do with him). The Pig's Ear went live in March of 2009, after which Craig tried to maintain a once-weekly update schedule, posting a new comic every Thursday (and later Friday) if all went well. In June of 2011, he warned that the comic had to go on an "extended break" because of personal issues; there has not been a single update ever since.
The comic can be found here.
This comic provides examples of:
- Adjective Animal Alehouse: The titular pub.
- All Men Are Perverts: Cyril describes his crystal ball in grandiose fashion as an almighty tool of the arcane...then cops to using it to look at naked ladies.
- Badass Normal: Angus, despite having been retired as an adventurer for years, manages to put the kibosh on an invading force of otherworldly monsters with nothing but a potato peeler (that has dwarven runes).
- Butt-Monkey: Everything happens to the barkeep.
- Deadpan Snarker: Sooner or later Cyril reduces everyone to this; Cyril himself snarks indiscriminately.
- Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": I don't think I should really have to explain.
- Gargle Blaster: Cyril's homemade beer is not only strong but has side effects ranging from flowers growing out of one's head to smoke pouring out ears to spontaneous nudity.
- Honest John's Dealership: Lucky Bolivar's Discount Healing is implied to be this, but aside from trying to peddle some seriously weird replacements for a missing eye (and one throwaway gag), he's reasonably reliable as an actual healer.
- Hourglass Hottie: Gwen. Very Gwen.
- Male Gaze: Cyril agrees to give Gwen a probationary period before he decides if he likes having her around for two very specific reasons.
- Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Aside from being a chef, Angus fits the mold to a T; he even speaks with a Scottish Funetik Aksent, a trait none of the other characters exhibit (and bear in mind that Craig himself is Scottish).
Six FacesOne Expression: Cyril's nose is his only visible facial feature; thus, body language and what he's actually saying are the only indicators of his mood. Lampshaded twice; once with "The Many Expressions of Cyril T. Wizard", and once when Cyril is describing his reaction to the sudden appearance of a naked, drunken Gwen.
- The actual trope is averted, though; all the characters have very distinctive faces and silhouettes.
- Schedule Slip: For the most part Craig does his best to avoid this-when he foresees a big dead zone ahead, he puts out a call for guest strips (as of this writing, he's just recently made his second such request).
- Squishy Wizard: Played with. Cyril isn't much of a physical fighter; but on the other hand, his catchphrase is "Kung fu is for wimps."