Zephaniah Comics: William Council
Some hilariously horrifying artwork and some massive writing faux pas
Oh god. Let’s get into this. So first off this comic uses Poser artwork. Not like, “Oh man, you’re such a poser” but this. While it looks good on that site, what you normally get some weird uncanny valley 3d models. This comic suffers for poser-syndrome in the worst possible way. The character’s faces are as expressive as some of those robots you’ve seen walking around. The teeth and lips come out as weird, the scenes all looks extremely empty (containing ONLY the characters so it looks like a ghost town), and most the characters are the exact same height.
Also… the face of that baby will haunt my dreams forever. It’s like something out of a horror movie.
The lettering is passable. You can read it and it doesn’t bother me. At times it can become hard to read due to the slant on the font. Then again some of the onomatopoeias in this comic are just downright unimaginative (“CLANG”). The text bubbles are bizarre at times and seem to switch up whenever the team remembered to add them. Overall, it’s readable though.
The plot is downright schizophrenic and juvenile. The first few pages jump from talking about how they are the “fastest flyers” to crashing to a flying vehicle and almost killing person before the cop.. wags a finger at them? Then jump cut to some girl? Then jump cut to 22 years ago? This continues pretty much until the end.
The author also violates one of the cardinal rules of writing. Maybe this is the limit of his poser artwork but he tells us things rather than showing it. We get these text boxes explaining what the characters are doing rather than using the visual medium he is working in. The ends up producing lines like “Once again Cassiopeia reaches into her pouch and selects a creature”. This happens again and again rather than the artist actually showing us what happens. It’s really distracting.
This problem is compounded by dialogue that serves only to speak to the reader. This is like if I went to the kitchen and said out loud, “I am hungry. What sort of sandwich should I make? I don’t like rye bread, nor do I like wheat. Perhaps white.” If I’m the character, I know this and I don’t have to articulate this to the reader. This goes back to showing, not explaining.
Exposition is tossed in willy-nilly on the bottom of the panel on occasion to give us some background information whenever the writer remembers to fill us in on something. Characters gain powers willy nilly and limits seem to be arbitrary and ill-defined. This causes me to not understand what “danger” is. As a reader I can’t empathize or identify with these characters.
Hell, if you’re still with me at this point I’ll say buy this comic just to look at some of the fascinatingly creepy faces that end up on the pages for some reason. Some of the best are on: page 6, bottom of page 12, and the top of page 14.