Friday, November 12, 2010

Donna Lewis' Reply All comic strip launches

Washington continues to be an incubator for comics strips, and they're not coming from the University of Maryland's Diamondback (Liberty Meadows, Boondocks, Watch Your Head) all the time now.

Local cartoonist Donna Lewis' Reply All comic strip will launch soon from the Washington Post Writer's Group. The strip is described as "Reply All is about those moments in today's information-overloaded environment when you forget your adult-self and toss the megaphone to your fifth-grade inner child. The strip explores the value of honesty, the power of knowledge and the impact of a bad-hair day on one's self-perception." It launches on February 28. Donna recently told me that she's reworking her earlier webcomics because she thinks her art has improved.

Congratulations, Donna! My interview with her quoted in the PR is here.

8 comments:

Sandy said...

Jarring graphics aside, this strip is like a dangling participle. We saw some of this cutesy angst in "Cathy," but it seems that this time around, we are left with existential semi-musings with not much else. thanks, Post, for....? Where are the moments of human recognition? Sigh. I'll bet Ms. Lewis is a dynamite lawyer, though.

Anonymous said...

eah, it's an awful strip, graphics-wise. OK, I suppose, for an online comic--but a waste of ink and paper (and valuable space) on the funny pages.

jobro said...

Yup, it sucks alright. An insult to REAL cartoonists everywhere.

Mike Rhode said...

Um, Jobro by definition, she's a REAL cartoonist now. Unless you have a definition where being syndicated and paid by the Wash Post Writers Guild and published doing sequential art on the comics page of the Wash Post isn't cartoons...

I don't quite understand why everyone thinks every strip has to appeal to them. Are you all reading yaoi manga for its fine artwork?

jobro said...

I know there are a lot of crudely drawn comic strips, such as "Dilbert," which are successful--but "Reply All" isn't one of them. The artwork (such as it is) looks like it was done in MS Paint, with lots of cutting and pasting from one panel to the next. The daily strip (Mon-Sat) is a blurry mess. The Sunday one at least has the benefit of color and size in its favor, although it is still ugly. I am befuddled how "Reply All" could have made it to syndication. Surely there are better cartoons out there? The Washington Post (which I read) could, for example, bring back "Zippy."

Mike Rhode said...

Syndication is a mystery to me as well. Donna has told me that WPWG editor Amy Lago worked with her for a year before the strip launched. She also said they're working on the grey tones for the dailies to get them to look better.
But she also says she doesn't claim to be an artist. I would imagine her style will evolve for better or worse, or she may eventually decide to hire an artist as many others have done...

I have an interview recorded with her on what happened with launching the strip in syndication. I did it about 2 weeks ago, but I need to find time to transcribe it.

I miss Zippy too! But a lot of poeple never liked that strip from the day it launched either. ;^)

jobro said...

Mike, I guess I'll have to accept "Reply All" as the cartoon I love to hate (move over, "Kathy"!). I see in your interview with Donna Lewis that she uses Adobe Creative Suite, not Microsoft Paint, to create her strip. Perhaps someday she'll figure out how to use the bezier tool (or better yet, hire an artist).

Mike Rhode said...

That's the spirit!