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After a long, long break caused by both laziness and my inability to figure out how to register for college classes, the ScratchCast is finally back! That is to say, we’ve been recording some episodes during this time, but I haven’t started editing them until recently (this episode was recorded in March). So let’s hope I can successfully play catch-up and post the other two episodes we’ve recorded this week as well.

In this episode, Ryan takes the helm and leads a two-hour discussion on the ever-popular Disney animated series Phineas and Ferb, and manages to keep us on track for once, despite having to deal with an inebriated Don East. So stay and listen for a bit, at least up to the part where Don gives an award-winning performance of a typical Phineas and Ferb episode. Or you can stay until the end, where Don gets his finger stuck in a bottle for a few minutes and we all mock him…yeah, Don does some weird stuff this episode. (As for the Shonen Jump Alpha interview…*shrug*)

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com.

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.

You guys thought I would never get around to this, didn’t you? While things have gotten in way of this article’s completion, mainly my bad time management skills, I’ve finally completed this article; a list of some of my favorite independent comics, to make up for the horrid episode of the ScratchCast that was released on the 10th. That said, when was the last article on this site actually posted? Back in October? Jeez, that’s a long time. All the more reason for this thing to exist. Anyway, I’ll be staying away from making a formal “Top 5” list, the reason being that I find it impossible to compare comics of different genres in such a way. Crap introduction done, actual article begin.

I Kill Giants (published by Image Comics)

“I find giants. I hunt giants. I kill giants. So forgive me if “motivating” a room full of losers with no self-esteem out of their hard earned money doesn’t hold much interest.”

These are the first four sentences we see come out of protagonist Barbara Thorson’s mouth, and the very same words that get her sent to the Principal’s office. Not that she cares; she’s become well acquainted with the man in the past several weeks. In what was proclaimed the Best Indy Book of 2008 by IGN, writer Joe Kelly (Deadpool, Action Comics, Ben 10, Ultimate Spider-Man) spins a wonderful tale about a 5th grader who finds herself dealing with monsters both real and imagined while trying to come to terms with the very real issues surrounding her home life. And it’s a tale that is aided marvelously by the grayscale artwork of one J.M. Ken Niimura, whose work I’m eager to see more of in the future. It’s saying something when you can create a character like Barbara, make her a schizophrenic asshole who constantly disrespects authority to the point of backhanding a guidance counselor….and still have her be a great and lovable character that we care about, long before we figure out why she’s acting like this. But Kelly did it perfectly, turning the girl with rabbit-ears into one of my favorite fictional characters. IKG is a comic that is hard to recommend without really spoiling it, but I feel confident enough to say that you’ll enjoy every last bit of Barbara’s adventure, hammers and all.

Pinocchio: Vampire Slayer (published by SLG Publishing)

“Ah, yes, my little surprise. I am a real boy. And you are my prey.”

Basic premise: Titular wooden puppet kicks copious amounts of vampire ass in an unofficial graphic followup to the original Carlo Collodi-penned tale. If that doesn’t pique your interest, I don’t know what will. It’s a living puppet going up against an organization of vampires in an attempt to avenge the memory of his father; what’s not to like? Dustin Higgins writes a wickedly funny-yet-somber story that’s brought to life with the black-and-white stylings of Van Jensen. Named as one 2010’s Top 10 Great Graphic Novels for Teens by YALSA, I found myself completely hooked on the sweet action scenes and the playful banter between characters. So much so, that I became absolutely eager to read the second installment…which I already have. Now I’m sitting here waiting for the print release of the third and final installment, which is coming this summer. Because, let’s be honest: everything is better with vampire hunting. In fact, stop reading this article for a moment and pick up a copy at your local library or something. You’ll never see these characters the same way again; especially the Blue Fairy.

Tank Girl (Various publishers)

“You’ll never become a finely tuned killing machine if you don’t put your heart into it. Asshole!”

Moving away from protagonists who kill monsters, let’s talk about a protagonist who pretty much is a monster. Tank Girl is, quite frankly, an insane gun-toting, tank-riding bitch who roams a Mad Max-esque Australian outback with her subservient kangaroo boyfriend. In one issue, she may stage an operation to steal all the good beer in the country. In another, she could be making countless 80s references…oh wait, that’s in every issue. The writer/artist team of Alan Martin and (usually) Jamie Hewlett string together pop culture references, obscenity, gratuitous fourth-wall breaking, and just plain overall insanity to create clever laughs. At the very least, you’ll find yourself smirking from the madcap absurdity while reading each issue. It’s the sort of twisted, violent, and arguably sexy comic that most teenage boys would be completely enraptured with. And all the “British-style” humour aside, I’m shocked that the comics aren’t as well-known in the States as they should be…however, Tank Girl does stand as the only indie comic I’ve read in public, other than Scott Pilgrim, to be automatically recognized by someone. And that’s just bloody awesome. (P.S.: I hear that the Rachel Talalay-directed Tank Girl film is bloody awful…)

Blacksad (published by Dark Horse Comics in North America)

“A star had been eclipsed, leaving my past in darkness, lost somewhere within the shadows. And nobody can live without a past.”

I reviewed this title back in the summer of 2010, but since we’re making up for bad content with this article…yeah, let me try recommending this thing again. Juan Díaz Canales (story) and Juanjo Guarnido (art) paint a picture of 1950s America, but instead of using plain-old human beings, they choose to have their characters be anthropomorphic animals. This naturally leads to some humourous things, such as bar fights with rhinos. But it also means that topics, such as race relations, become a bit more interesting, now that several species of beasts are thrown into the mix. Rather than going black-and-white like most crime stories in the vein of noir, the artwork is done with muted watercolours; something that definitely adds to the “fun” combination of gritty drama and dark humour that Canales and Guarnido have created.  Blacksad does the “hard-boiled detective” thing really well, and it will probably remain as one of my favorite — if not absolute favorite — crime comics until the day I die. Yeah, the wait between each new issue can be a bit irritating, but they’re always worth it.

Like I say in the disclaimer…this isn’t our best epiosde. This episode was just a total mess due to most of us not being familiar with the topic and those of us who were being somewhat reluctant to speak. Considering the boring and awkward content of this episode, it was decided to post the raw CallGraph recording of the entire Skype call, which includes 15 minutes of us discussing porn. Yeah.

Tomorrow, or sometime later that, I’ll be posting a list of indie comics that I recommend everyone should take a peek at. Maybe that’ll make up for this trainwreck…

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com.

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.

We start off with erectile dysfunction and robot cancer jokes before Don East takes charge in leading the celebration of the Transformers franchise. From the original 80s series to current Transformers Prime, the guys tackle pretty much everything about the sentient robots. When they weren’t talking about the Hub’s schedule changes, 80s songs, masturbation, and other bizarre topics. Joining the ride is the mysterious BloodyMarquis (aka Mr. Wednesday), who serves to add some well-needed humour.

Next week, I return to the podcast to help lead discussion on the world of independent comics.

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com.

P.P.S. What is YOUR favorite Transformers series? Tell us on Twitter, Facebook, via email, or in the comments below!

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.

The era of nothing has begun! Rejoice, peasants! Rejoice and worship your overlords! But in all seriousness, we’re going to really, really try to keep our act together. We’ve promised you guys consistently funny and informative podcasts and articles, and whatnot, and we shall start delivering this month. We’ll even have a new site logo, which is internationally recognized proof that we’re taking off into a (somewhat) new direction. I’d tell you all the contents of this episode beyond the reviews, but really? That’ll just ruin the surprises you’ll find while listening, which includes me actually finding a line that we won’t cross and Don falling asleep.

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com. And the outro is the greatest song of all time, the MegaUpload song. The site shall be missed.

P.P.S. What were YOUR thoughts on these animated series? Tell us on Twitter, Facebook, via email, or in the comments below!

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.

Yeah, not going to lie. The reason this is late is because I’m a lazy bastard who would rather play Bastion then finish editing a 90 minute podcast. This was supposed to go up on Friday night…then it got bumped to Saturday. Then Sunday. Then Monday. At least this thing is finally up and I’m done with my mid-terms. This podcast was recorded before DC officially revealed their new logo, so our discussion treats it as mainly a rumour. Also expect bitching about the non-rumour of Rob Liefeld being put in charge of three DC Comics series. There’s also discussion on the layoffs at Media Blasters (and how the American anime industry is basically going to crap), the upcoming Saturday-nigh Fox animation block, and pizza and calzones. This is an awkward episode that I couldn’t really edit. There are so many audio glitches and stupidity that overlaps will things we say and just ugh. Barking dogs,  Sketch turning into a robot…so the entire thing is a raw cut. Hopefully we’ll get better next episode. Speaking of next episode, we’re making some changes to the ScratchCast.

Starting next week, the ScratchCast will be divided into two separate podcasts that will alternate each week. One will be a news podcast, which is pretty self-explanatory. The other will be our feature podcast, where we’ll continue to talk about random crap loosely tied into a main topic.

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com.

P.P.S. What were YOUR thoughts on the recent changes at DC Comics? Tell us on Twitter, Facebook, via email, or in the comments below!

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.

This episode was recorded on Thursday night, and we had some…problems with it. Not just the occasional wind tunnel sounds that you’ll hear while listening, or the bizarre echo-filled closing. No, I’m talking about the 30 minutes it took for all of us to get our act together and start the episode. There was arguing and random laughter, Jon got pissed at everyone, and I screamed in anger for the first time in months. Not a good start to an end-of-the-year episode, and our first one at that. But while hastily editing this episode for tonight, I found myself feeling like this 2-hour long episode was very enjoyable. Hell, not only did we have TomatoSurprise, ToonFaithful, and Sketch, but also Mr. Wednesday from Animation Revelation and Thomas Blalock from Twitter. And dammit, despite the rough start, we had some fun doing this episode and every single one in the past: especially the “lost” episode nine of Notaku Diaries.

Thanks for listening to all the insane and stupid crap we put out this year, from Notaku Diaries, to Not Another Old Cartoon Podcast, to those weird WRSP thingys, and finally the ScratchCast. Here’s hoping that we continue to act like fools in the future…as well as improve our quality. See y’all next year!

P.S. The song at the beginning is Uncaged Czarina, and it serves as our theme song. And so we won’t have to pay $10 every time we use it…Free Royalty Free Music by DanoSongs.com.

P.S.S. What were YOUR favorite parts of 2011? Tell us on Twitter, Facebook, via email, or in the comments below!

Download this and other WRSP podcasts on iTunes.
Don’t have iTunes? Download Scratch Cast episodes here.
Only interested in our podcasts? Subscribe to our ScratchCast blog maintained by TetrisDork.