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Eric: Yeah, we're obsessed with this. Dude -- it's the Great Outdoor Fight!

Ache060222

(From Achewood. Click on the thumbnail for full sized OH MY GOD!)

Throughout the annals of History, some focus has gone, quite naturally, to competition. A good amount of that competitive focus has been on sports. For those who think this is a modern phenomenon... well, you're wrong. The ancient Greeks and Romans had athletic competition as a mainstay of their lives. Victorious armies would lay down their weapons and compete in tests of skill, speed, strength and bravery alongside their foes. At the height of the power of Byzantium, when Constantinople was in full ascension, the political intrigue of the city (and therefore nation) centered on the Hippodrome, where the chariot racing took place, and the major factions organized around rival sports teams.

It's the nature of competition. It fascinates us. We invest in it, even when we aren't involved. Go Mariners.

And right now, while the world focuses on the Winter Olympics, the webcomics world is focused on a competition of a different sort. You've seen it mentioned here several times already, and here we are again. Three Days! Three Acres! Three thousand men! Only one will win the Great Outdoor Fight! Chris Onstad's epic story of legacy and blood has gotten a tremendous amount of buzz. And deservedly so -- this is a pinnacle moment for Achewood.

For those who came in late, Ray Smuckles was being visited by his mother, the Southern Matriarch Mrs. Smuckles. And, after an evening's repast of cod and chablis (a whole lot of chablis), his mother let slip that Ray's father -- Ramses Luther Smuckles -- had been a fighter. And she claimed he had won the Great Outdoor Fight.

The Great Outdoor Fight is sports competition with all the niceties stripped away. Consider it, for a moment. It's so over the top, so very ridiculous, as to somehow hold all of machismo and overblown athleticism within its three acre walls. This is a tank fight. Three thousand men run into a three acre pen. They start fighting. They keep fighting for three solid days. The last man standing wins. People die in this fight. And even the losers who survive are apparently scooped out of the arena in a giant steam shovel.

And up until now, all the reports from the Great Outdoor Fight have come second hand. The Fight is a legend. People talk quietly about past fights, based on what they heard. "Building a brand," as Roast Beef called it, later. And no legend was as great as "The Man With The Blood On His Hands" -- the winner of the '73 Fight, who unlike all other fighters did it alone, with no army. A man called Rodney Leonard Stubbs.

Rodney Leonard Stubbs. Ramses Luther Smuckles. That and a blurry photograph are all Ray needed to become convinced that he was Son of Rodney, and the Great Outdoor Fight was in his blood. He decided he was going to enter, and of course if he entered he would win. There was no way he would fail. And he managed to convince Roast Beef. And so the pair rode off to Bakersfield and the Great Outdoor Fight.

I didn't buy it for a second.

Seriously -- when Envelópe Martinez helped Ray fake his entry into the fight, he made it clear no real tough guy could show his face if Ray Smuckles beat him down. Seriously. To the point that he had his own face cut off. Ray was a cool guy, and all... but seriously. He was no fighter.

And we knew... we knew that Ray was a coward that would desert a dying man. We know it from the Cartilage Head story. And you'll notice that the same day Great Outdoor Fight tee shirts became available Cartilage Head tee shirts also became available. This was the true face of Ray Smuckles. Not Blood of Champion. Not Son of Rodney. Just a puffed up little American Curl who ran out on a tragic figure who had apparently caused himself terrible damage to amuse Ray.

No, I was fascinated with this story -- this story that proceeded so naturally, so fully. We accepted that our entire cast was enthralled with the Great Outdoor Fight, because the Great Outdoor Fight was the ultimate sport. It was iconic. And we accept that Ray would become convinced it was his destiny to win. And when Roast Beef turned out to be an absolute expert in the Fight's lore and strategy -- with all the precision of an autistic geek's obsession -- we could accept that too. Roast Beef is a loyal samurai. Of course he would hack the Fight's computers and enter himself, all so he could see Ray win. He believes in Ray. He believes Ray is the Son of Rodney. That became larger in Beef's mind than the simple facts of his own eyes -- that this fat American Curl didn't have a chance.

And with Beef, it became real. Beef got the buzz going. People began to accept that the Son of Rodney was indeed the child of the man with the blood on his hands. But we knew better. We knew better. We know Ray Smuckles. Ray Smuckles cheats. He sells his soul to become a rich and famous musician. Good things just happen to Ray. When he is confronted by pain or hardship, he folds. In Hell he ends up drunk with flowers mocking him. On road trips he ends up pathetic in a stall, unable to move lest his pepper touch the rim of the toilet bowl. He was lucky, and he had Beef, who he'd never recognize as the real secret of his abilities in the Fight.

Until today.

They still talk about Rodney Leonard Stubbs's Fight. How he threw a beer bottle through the face of Carl Veldt -- a perfect spiral, no less. How he tore off Fancy Mark Clancy's entire middle -- no one said it could be done. This was a legend who had done legendary things. This was The Man With The Blood On His Hands.

Today, it was just Ray. Ray and a redneck bruiser who saw through all the bullshit. No Beef. No strategy. Just Ray and a guy twice his size who actually was in shape.

And Ray tore his freaking face off.

And right there -- right there -- it became clear. Ray might actually be the Son of Rodney. The spiritual son, if not the son of blood. (Though suddenly it becomes possible that Ramses Luther Smuckles was Rodney Leonard Stubbs.) Suddenly it could all be true.

And that makes me wonder about where the strip goes from here. We have only seen the first day of the Great Outdoor Fight. And we know little to nothing about Rodney Leonard Stubbs himself. We only know the legend of his Fight, not the reality.

Well, and we know that he is forever remembered as the Man With The Blood On His Hands.

Guys, I know the cliche "blood on my hands." It's not a nice one. It's what you say when you're guilty of something. It's what you say when you've done something so horrible, so unconscionable that you can never, ever wash the stain of it away. It's Lady Macbeth going insane. It's Hercule Poirot ripping the gloves off a murderer to find the blood caked under his fingernails. It is sin incarnate.

Ray is the Son of Rodney.

What blood will be on his hands? Rodney Leonard Stubbs is well known as having no army. The Son of Rodney does. How will he dispose of them by the end? Only one man will win the Great Outdoor Fight.

And, as Wednesday wrote at the start of this plotline:

The son of Rodney Leonard Stubbs is a coward who would desert a dying man.

God only knows if that coward can fight his best friend.

She was right. That's what it will all come down to. Only I'm beginning to think that the cowardly act would be to abandon Beef on the battlefield -- to abandon a friend that Ray was once willing to give a lung to.

Whose blood will be on the Son of Rodney's hands at the end of the Great Outdoor Fight?

Posted by Eric Burns-White at February 22, 2006 9:31 AM

Comments

Comment from: Alexis Christoforides [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 11:39 AM

We can't rule out the possibility that the Cartilage Head experience has actually changed Ray.

In other news, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF.

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 11:46 AM

It's certainly possible. Though... I dunno. The Hell experience didn't really change Ray.

Comment from: Ford Dent [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 11:58 AM

I think that Ray is starting to buy into his own hype. He has finally become so convinced that he is the descendant of the Man With The Blood On His Hands that he has become that man (er... cat).

The magic's not in the hat Ray, it was with you all along!

Just to reiterate, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF.

Comment from: Eric Burns [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 12:06 PM

I think each and every comment someone makes on this thread -- at least their first comment -- should somewhere include the phrase HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Because dude. HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Matt Buchwald [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 12:46 PM

I don't really even follow Achewood and I have to admit this is freaking cool.

I mean, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: ZedPower [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:06 PM

Hell didn't change Ray because it was just Hell. Y'know. He went to Hades like others go to Tijuana. He met a musician. He got drunk. His resurrection involved being pretty sure that most rocks weigh about a pound.

Cartilage Head left him a photograph. I don't think Ray threw it away. (He might have, but we don't know either way.) He knows that this picture is the truth, captioned and framed.

I'm not saying that it will impact the Fight, but I'm betting that CH was a significantly more intense and lasting experience than the afterlife. That photograph is another talking flower on the wall, only this one followed him home.

Anyway. Deep personal guilt or not, that doesn't change the fact that he TORE THAT GUY'S FACE OFF. Heck, for all we know, the combat prowess can come from his blood just as much as it comes from redirected self-loathing. But I'm not going there.

Comment from: Jenny Rowland [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:09 PM

Ray has never particularly been one of my favorite AW characters. I like Beef better. Beef has depths. Beef has actually had to work for things, and make do with unpleasant circumstances, where for the most part Ray has been able to float through life. Like Eric says, good things just happen to Ray. And so, while Ray is good for a bit of amusement, I have never particularly cared what happens to him, because (to my recollection) he's never done anything meaningful.

Now, however, I find myself looking at him in a whole new light. A whole new "what the hell man did he just do that he cannot do that" light. Because for those following along at home, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Ford Dent [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:26 PM

His face.

It got torn off.

With Ray's hands.

Comment from: jason [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:35 PM

You know, I was sitting down to breakfast this morning of a stale muffin and a cup of coffee and reading about the life of Ricahrd D. Anderson.

I thought to myself. "McGuyver, now there's a mans man...I bet he could give Chuck Norris a good run for his money." And then HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!!!

And I thought, wow, that Richard Dean Anderson has some balls now doesn't he.

Comment from: Archon Divinus [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:53 PM

This is getting pretty crazy. I mean, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Aerin [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 1:54 PM

Achewood has been sitting near the top of my "Why am I not reading this?" list for a while. That seriously needs to be rectified. Because dude, HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Minivet [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 2:24 PM

I've just received word that doctors have upgraded the victim's condition from "critical" to "stable, but still FACE TORN OFF BY RAY SMUCKLES".

Comment from: Minivet [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 2:41 PM

Oh, and this is about the nitpickingest one can get, but:

At the height of the power of Byzantium, when Constantinople was in full ascension...

Don't we usually say "ascendance" or "ascendancy" for political meanings? "Ascension" more often is religious or astronomical. Perhaps you were thinking of "Constantinople's star was in full ascension"?

Comment from: Shaenon [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 2:43 PM

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Okay, we've known from the moment Beef enrolled that this was going to come down to a death match between two lifelong friends. But Ray abandoning Beef? I don't think so. We've already seen that side of Ray via Cartilage Head. We know it exists, which is why this time will be different. How, exactly, I don't know. Onstad has a way of setting us up for two obvious possibilities (secret ice cream shop or something unspeakably creepy?) and then providing a payoff that's completely unexpected while at the same time exactly what we were set up for (unspeakably creepy secret ice cream shop!).

Will we, the readers, be caught off guard this time? Dude. HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Petie [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 2:56 PM

I can only hope that Onstad had the Great Outdoor Fight fully in mind when he started a story about fake testicles you attach to cell phones. Wne Ray first enetered the fight, I made a public forum joke that Ray's mom would win the fight after having entered it to save her boy. I'll agree that we're long past any such chicanery, having entered a world where the only logical conclusion is that Ray and Beef are the last cats standing.

I think Beef will lay down for Ray.

Comment from: Petie [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 3:09 PM

Also, since I must have hte memory of a gnat:

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: MyrrDisparo [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 4:01 PM

I'm having my night coffee in front of the computer, reading the posts above when suddenly it hit me: I HAVE to write something for this. If only for the sake of Beef. So I registered, and started to write, cigarette in hand. This could prove interesting.
First post here and I have the exhilarating pleasure of saying the greatest sounding sentence ever: "HE TORE HIS FACE OFF"
Wait, let me rephrase that: "RAY tore his freaking face OFF" That's just big. I mean the guy has been to hell and back, he has given a lung... He has a photo holding his own pulsating, throbbing HEART (insert obvious "piece of meat in his hands" joke here) He even has deserted a dying man (that makes him pretty special, I guess. Myself, I never even seen a dying man, much less desert him) But he has never actively done something that harmed anyone. That could badly damage his karma to a point not even the chochacho King could help it.
I think this may very well be the end of Ray's luck. But maybe I'm being paranoid. I tend to do that.
Anyway, the real question is "who will win the fight?" I agree that it will come down to Beef and Ray. Probably through a convoluted yet plausible turn of events (fire in the area, maybe?) I await this clash of titans with impacience, but let me explain how it would be if it was up to me.
Beef would win, hands down. He's the force of nature, he bends, but the doesn't ever break. Ever. And he's been through nightmares before. He has spent his life in a van with Gramma K, he has died more than twice. It's time for his rising, it's time to prove that he's worth a damn. And if he has to tear apart his best friend's hopes and dreams, so be it.
Then again, that is just stupid. I know, I know, Ray WILL win. We all know. His is the heritage, his is the idea, his is the right. Not Beef's. But nothing is Beef's.
But I just dream about Beef erasing that freaking smirk off Ray's face. After all, he has already had his own share of glory. Because, haven't you heard? HE TORE HIS FREAKING FACE OFF. But man, Ray? Without Beff... He's nothing.
Sorry for the lengthy post, but I just had to let pro-Beefism out of my system(Please bear with my spelling and grammar. I'm Spanish and I'm still getting the hang of this language)

Comment from: Darth Paradox [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 4:39 PM

I'm going to have to agree. If it comes down to Ray and Beef in an actual fight, Beef would win. Ray doesn't have it in him to beat down Beef, and Beef is perfectly capable (in my opinion) of holding his own when the pressure's on and his back is to the wall. Whether he would actually fight in that situation, though, is another matter. He's in this for Ray.

I don't see it going down that way, though. I see one of the other combatants - likely one of the other big-name fighters, favorites to win - mercilessly removing Beef from the contest, leaving his battered, barely alive body to be unceremoniously scooped from the Acres by a steam shovel, and quite possibly breaking Ray's spirit in the process. After all, he came to fight, but is it worth seeing his best friend get destroyed by another man? I don't think Ray's ready for that.

Comment from: EsotericWombat [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 4:43 PM

Anyone else notice the alt text?

"Up through panel seven, this is EXACTLY how a Honky-Tonk style blowjob goes"

Dude...

At first I thought that maybe this was something that Beef predicted would happen, and prepared Ray for but perhaps "this guy has torn ligaments in his face" is a bit of a stretch. Though it would serve to strengthen the rumor that Ray ate envelope's face.

The thing that makes this situation unique for Ray is that he must confront the redeck Even if he runs and gets away, the word gets out that the Son of Rodney is a coward. And if that happens, he might as well take a fall.

And this fucker? He knocks him down and calls him on what we all know to be true.

And then he goes and questions his birth. And his birthright.

Ray Smuckles is a coward.
He is a liar.

But he's also the Son of Rodney. And to prove it?

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF

Comment from: Kail Panille [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 5:53 PM

Okay, silly semi off-topic question:

How is Achewood pronounced? Does the first syllable rhyme with "Hash"? Or with "Cake"?

Also...

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: william [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 7:04 PM

Eric, you totally need to reduce the linking graphic to just a few early panels.

When I got up this morning I made the mistake of opening websnark while I was trawling. Thankfully I just barely glimpsed the post title and was all like Oh, my God, I haven't checked up on Achewood yet. There is Things Happening there! But had I looked at the graphic for a second before racing over to find the latest in the Great Outdoor Fight I might not have had as much first-hand shock.

But then again. Maybe I still would have. HE TORE HIS FACE OFF

Dude's face. Got tore off.

By far the biggest and mostest awesome shock in the last year of entertainment I've consumed. HE TORE HIS FACE OFF

I guess I was already largely convinced that Ray was actually the Son of Rodney. But nothing says that's gotta translate into the ability to TEAR A DUDE'S FACE OFF. Onstead had me with Beef's involvement (who you'd be crazy not to favor), but I've always liked Ray too. And when he actually got away with taking out Ron Snipes I knew the fight was Big Stuff.

But that. That was nothing. That was a plan. A scheme. Schemes are what happen in sitcoms. TEARING DUDES' FACES OFF does not. Well... I don't know about you crazy overseas folks. Maybe Wednesday can shed some light on the BBC ONE's subcult of wee-hour sitcoms that revolve around TEARING DUDES' FACES OFF. But, in the meantime. Dude.

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Comment from: Wednesday White [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 8:22 PM

Now, now. Face Off-Tearing is a hit BBC Three sitcom.

Comment from: The Matt Who Is [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 9:49 PM

This is a great story, and not to pummel a deceased equine, but...

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF!

Which is, let's agree to agree, the awesome.

However, I don't know why so many people are saying that Roast Beef will not win. A part of me agrees with this, true-- I think Beef has it in him to hand this to his best friend.

However, this is the Great Outdoor Fight. Roast Beef is also seriously obsessed with this event, and his silence was ominous when Ray asked if RB was in the Fight. He has done his research, and he knows the weaknesses of all the top fighters. How could he not know Ray's weaknesses-- and there are many-- too? Including Ray's weakness for helping Beef?

That ominous silence on the bike. The way he built Ray's reputation and Ray's army. I think Beef is using Ray for once. He is at least thinking about it, weighing his options, building his brand.

All that may have changed, though. Because Ray Smuckles TORE THAT REDNECK'S FACE OFF!

(And speaking as a guy who is actually a really good fighter... that was the awesome.)

Comment from: TheNintenGenius [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 22, 2006 11:20 PM

When I read this today, the only reaction I had was "HOLY FUCKING SHIT."

I didn't think Ray had it in him. I don't think anybody thought Ray had it in him. I mean, as Weds brought up earlier, "The fight is in his blood, not under his nails." He may have been biologically descended from Rodney but, well, he wasn't Rodney. Any dude that'd ditch a dying man like a coward couldn't possibly have the fight in him... or could he?

I think this is going to be an important turning point in how this whole storyline works out. Since, you know, he fucking tore a dude's face off. Simple as that.

Comment from: Phil Kahn [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 12:49 AM

Dammit. Now you've ruined the rest of the plot for me. Thanks a lot.

Oh, and I guess he tore a guy's face off or something.

Comment from: Ray Radlein [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 5:45 AM

I have to say that reading the comments in this thread is just about the most weirdly disturbing thing that I could be doing at this insane hour.

I'm tired (like always), I'm foggy (like always), and I'm in pain (like always); and yet, every few sentences, the name "Ray" leaps right into my eyeballs and causes the "Huh? What?" circuit in my brain to fire, only to discover that all across this great planet people are amazed that Ray TORE THAT GUY'S FACE OFF!

Now, at last, I know why my High School classmate, Hitler O'Malley, was always so jumpy and nervous.

Comment from: Quintus Horatius [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 6:57 AM

I'm confused why this is so shocking to everyone. I mean, sure, Ray's a little flakey, but anyone who can destroy a Honda Civic with his bare hands is a dude to watch out for.

TEARING A GUY'S FACE OFF is one thing, but generally speaking people are constructed less solidly than automobiles.

In general.

Comment from: Quintus Horatius [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 6:59 AM

I'm confused why this is so shocking to everyone. I mean, sure, Ray's a little flakey, but anyone who can destroy a Honda Civic with his bare hands is a dude to watch out for.

TEARING A GUY'S FACE OFF is one thing, but generally speaking people are constructed less solidly than automobiles.

In general.

Comment from: MyrrDisparo [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 7:45 AM

Man, I dunno. That redneck looked thougher than a Honda Civic. He was a more like a Hummer, in my opinion. Look at those shoulders... He's like, I dunno, three of four Rays?
But that's not the point. He could damn well be the human equivalent of a bumblebee and still it would not diminish the fact that RAY TORE HIS FUCKIN' FACE OFF. OFF, I say.
So, you know... Ray. Think about it

Comment from: WestRider [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 8:48 AM

Go Mariners? What kind of masochist are you?

But anyway, did you see the way Ray TORE THAT GUY'S FACE OFF?

PS
Woohoo! Looks like I can finally post here!

Comment from: Tim Tylor [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 9:05 AM

HE TORE HIS FACE OFF. Dude, we believe.

Note that the rage grabs hold of Ray when Defaced proposes to take Ray's gang for himself. Looks like he pressed a big button there.

The magic's not in the hat Ray, it was with you all along!

To quote Dogbert, I don't think this will be a children's fable anytime soon.

Comment from: Paul Gadzikowski [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 10:54 AM

I have to say, with all the examination of Achewood that's been going on here lately, today I saw it pop up in my morning trawl with an anticipation that it'd never lent me before. Congratulations, Wednesday & Eric.

Oh, and HE TORE HIS FACE OFF.

Comment from: Ray Radlein [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 12:06 PM

For what it's worth, I've never been much of an Achewood fan. I could recognize that there was something of great merit going on there, but it just didn't resonate on my native frequency or something.

On the other hand, thanks to Websnark, I read the Cartilage Head story, and found it to be a wonderful bit of dark genius; and while I didn't keep reading Achewood after it ended, I, too, quiver with antici... pation at the thought of what will come next — if for no other reason than the weird quiver my hindbrain gets every time I read a message here that seems to say, just for an instant, that I have RIPPED SOMEONE'S FACE OFF.

Comment from: Darth Paradox [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 7:48 PM

All I have to offer is the excuse that I was horribly tired yesterday.

Somehow, I failed to mention that Ray TORE THE GUY'S FACE OFF.

And so in repentance I must mention here, twice, that HE TORE HIS GODDAMNED FACE OFF.

I am cleansed.

Comment from: Darth Paradox [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 7:57 PM

And incidentally, I note that the only reason Ray has an army at all is because Roast Beef gave them his word.

Taking on the mantle of his father's name and legend has changed Ray. He refuses to go back on his word, he refuses to back down from a challenge, and HE TORE A GUY'S FACE OFF.

This is a different Ray Smuckles - or Ray Stubbs, perhaps, as this version of him seems to be known - than he was even a month ago. And while Ray Smuckles proved himself a coward who would desert a dying man, I'm not sure Ray Stubbs would at all.

Comment from: Scarybug [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 23, 2006 11:32 PM

I'm pretty sure Ray's not wanting an army and Beef's word-giving was all scripted out by Beef. It's all part of the process to make Ray a legend.

When this storyline began, it reminded me of the abruptly-ended manes storyline. Ray and Beef became bad-asses when they got manes.

I wonder if Onstad even knows how the fight will end. He's said in interviews that he usually just lets it happen as he does the comic.

Comment from: Montykins [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 24, 2006 10:48 PM

Ray doesn't have it in him to beat down Beef,"
Sure he does! He's killed Beef like twice already. Killing Beef is nothing at this point.

Comment from: Prodigal [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 25, 2006 3:08 AM

FACE!

TORN OFF!

Comment from: Dan Severn [TypeKey Profile Page] posted at February 25, 2006 11:52 PM

Man, I am so glad that I've kept up to date with Achewood. I mean, it's been good in the past-- VERY good, but this is EPIC.

Onstad really has a cinematic way of storytelling that just sucks me in. I think it's telling that Achewood is one of the very few "infinite canvas" strips I read. That is, there could be any number of panels. But it's always just right. And now

Man. This is amazing stuff.

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