RoboCatz vs ThunderDogs
Staff: Justin “Spanky” Cermak, Donovan Goertzen, Fabian Cobos
Crazy fun premise, good art, but painful dialogue.
So today I have before me “RoboCatz vs Thunder Dogs”. With a name like that- how the hell could I possibly turn it down? I mean it’s got explosion and a robot battle cat fighting a dog with guns on it’s shoulders. No way I’m missing this party.
Let’s talk art. So overall it’s competently done. It properly uses dynamic posing, has an understanding of how to draw a form in perspective (maintains proportions), has good framing and image composition, and the color pallet is professionally done. I really like some of the posing on the comic and angles the artist chose- it shows a real dedication to this comic and a love for it. I really dug the art. The style is rather cartoony and it fits with the kind of “out there” premise of this comic. I’ll note here that my promotional copy has a little bit of artifacting from compression but even if they have it in the final it’s not bad.
Like I’ve said in previous reviews- if it’s unobtrusive and has no issues then it’s really good lettering. There is an instance on page 9 where there is a dialogue balloon almost entirely covered by another one. And, like you might have guessed, the lettering is on point. I also didn’t notice any major issues with layout either but no great risks were taken. I do like the inclusion of a particularly detailed map at one point as well.
Writing / Story:
The main premise is that dogs and cats have been fighting since the dawn of time and are fated to do so. What starts out as “oh ha-ha, a cat and dog fighting each other- look they even indicated saber tooth tigers and wolves fought” quickly turns into battle dogs with shells and cats with conical hats and spears fighting each other. I was about to write a line about “I don’t think there was much overlap between dire tigers and…” but then I realized that this is a total party comic where they kind of throw logic out the window in favor of bulldogs with giant spiny shells fighting cat warriors. Yep- it’s THAT kind of comic and I love it. Eventually this conflict results in cat vs dog mecha gladiator tournaments and it’s as awesome as that sounds. So while the premise is totally bonkers I have a feeling that it’s geared for, perhaps, a younger audience than me. I could be wrong because I was taken in too.
Let’s talk dialogue however. it is downright PAINFUL to read. he humor, or attempt at it, is rather juvenile and relies mostly on cat and dog puns. I can’t say I wasn’t expecting that, but it’s not really all that engaging. I’ve always had issues with comedy comics- they really fall flat far too often and this one doesn’t break the mold in that respect. This comic takes EVER dog and cat pun or joke out there and parades it around like it’s a lab with a big stick and NONE of them work. I would give you guys some examples but I can’t bring myself to type them out.
Pacing wise it is very competent. It sets up the premise, it establishes the characters, it gives us some highs, it shows our heroes at their worst, then gives us a clever little climax. It’s basically “the brave little corgi that could” but with giant mecha… and that’s kind cool.
So this is a hard one. The premise is insane and fun, the art is good, the lettering is on point, the pacing and premise were well done, but the dialogue is painfully bad. Ultimately… I’d say give it a read. Just kind of accept the terrible puns and (for the most part just ignore the dialogue actually) and it’s a damn good comic.
PS: The corgi sitting with his head on my lap for the majority of this review in no way influenced my review of this comic.
Art: 6/10 [Better than average]
Lettering/Layout: 6/10 [Does it’s job well]
Plot: 4/10 [Decent pacing and premise but terrible dialogue]
Novelty: 8/10 [… it’s “RoboCatz vs Thunder Dogs”]
(Please note that the link above goes to their Kickstarter for this comic. It will be replaced by a link to their sales venue when it goes on sale.)