Tag Archives: fantasy

Webcomics: Chapter 4 – Märchenhaft

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Webcomics: Kapitel 4 – Märchenhaft

Nicht nur Bücher haben märchenhafte Themen, auch (Web-)Comics nehmen sich ihnen an. Im Rahmen des Märchensommers möchte ich euch zwei von vielen vorstellen.

Peritale

Peritale von Mari Costa erzählt die Geschichte der Fee Periwinkle. Doch eine Sache unterscheidet sie gravierend von ihren Mitschülern und Geschwistern: Sie hat keinerlei magische Begabung. Trotzdem wird auch ihr die Aufgabe gegeben eine gute Fee zu werden und ihrem menschlichen Schützling zu einem richtigen Happy End zu helfen. Dafür muss sie die Feenwelt verlassen und sich den Abenteuern in der ihr völlig fremden Menschenwelt stellen.

Das das ohne magische Hilfe nicht ganz so einfach ist, wird ihr sehr schnell bewusst, hält sie aber nicht davon ab mit Chaos und Herz ihren Weg zu gehen.

Der Webcomic hat zwar gerade erst sein dreijähriges Bestehen gefeiert, ist mit ~300 Seiten allerdings noch recht kurz – laut Autorin ist das auch erst ein Viertel der Geschichte. Trotzdem bietet Peris Welt eine bunte Mischung aus Charakteren, dunkle Geheimnissen, eine gute Priese Humor und liebenswerte Charaktere.

Also ich bin gespannt, wie das Happy End aussieht, das Peri für ihren Schützling fabriziert, aber ich vermute es wird ganz anders, als man es denkt. 😀

Cautionary Fables & Fairy Tales (Belehrende Fabeln & Märchen)

Eine Reihe von Märchen aus aller Welt sind die Cautionary Fables & Fairy Tales von Kel McDonald und Kate Ashwin. Bisher gibt es die drei Sammelbände Europa, Afrika und Asien, in denen verschiedene Märchen und Fabeln aus den jeweiligen Regionen von verschiedenen Zeichner*innen neu erzählt werden.

Der Fokus wird nicht nur auf die  Bekannteren wie – z.B. in Europa –  Rapunzel und dem Rattenfänger von Hameln gesetzt, sondern auch andere Geschichten erzählt, die eher seltener im Fokus stehen. Besonders faszinierend finde ich auch, dass mit Afrika, Asien und bald Ozeanien Regionen ein Teil davon sind, die ganz andere Traditionen und Geschichten pflegen, mit denen man hier in Europa ja doch eher selten in Kontakt kommt.

Auf Kels Seite kann man sich ihre Beiträge – neben ihren anderen fantastischen Comics – ansehen und allein dadurch reizt es mich die Produktion von Band vier Ozeanien zu unterstützen.

Nachwort

Einen weiteren Webcomic mit Märchenthema habe ich bereits in Kapitel 1 „Reluctant Heroines“ vorgestellt: Namesake, zusätzlich dazu hatte ich auf Twitter nach Tipps gefragt und einige interessante Vorschläge bekommen. Falls jemand noch mehr Lesestoff möchte: Twitter-Anfrage.

Eines der Prints, die ihr im Verlauf des Märchensommers gewinnen könnt, ist übrigens der „Traumafabel Short„, ein Teil einer Rotkäppchen Erzählung aus zwölf verschiedenen Blickwinkeln, der mit wunderbaren Zeichnungen von Blätterklingen und Mohnfuchs versehen ist. Einige der Zeichnungen sind ebenfalls in den Postkartenpaketen enthalten.

Kennt ihr die Comics oder andere Werke der Zeichnerinnen? Würden sie euch reizen?
Welche märchenhaften Comics sind euch noch über den Weg gelaufen?

Anne/PoiSonPaiNter

© Für die Bilder liegen bei ihren jeweiligen Schöpfern. Ich habe sie lediglich als Beispiel für ihre Arbeit benutzt und hoffe, dass das in Ordnung ist.

____________________________

Lies auf Deutsch

Not only books have fairy tale themes, also (web-)comics deal with them. As part of the Märchensommer I would like to introduce you to two of many.

Peritale

Peritale by Mari Costa tells the story of the fairy Periwinkle. But there is one thing that sets her apart from her classmates and siblings: she has no magical talent. Nevertheless, she is assigned the task of becoming a fairy godmother and helping her human ward to a real happy end. For this she has to leave the fairy world and face the adventures in the human world that is completely foreign to her.

She quickly realizes that this is not that easy without magical help, but this does not stop her from pursuing her path with chaos and compassion.

The web comic has just celebrated its three-year anniversary, but with ~300 pages it is still quite short – according to the author this is only a quarter of the story. Nevertheless, Peri’s world offers a colorful mixture of characters, dark secrets, a good dose of humor and endearing characters.

So I’m curious to see what the happy ending Peri creates for her ward will look like, but I guess it will be quite different from what you think. 😀

Cautionary Fables & Fairy Tales

A series of fairy tales from all over the world are the Cautionary Fables & Fairy Tales by Kel McDonald and Kate Ashwin. So far there are the three anthologies Europe, Africa and Asia, in which various fairy tales and fables from the respective regions are newly told by different illustrators.

The focus is not only on the more familiar ones such as – for example in Europe – Rapunzel and the Pied Piper, but also other stories are told, which are rather rarely in the spotlight. I also find it particularly fascinating that with Africa, Asia and soon Oceania there are regions that have very different traditions and stories with which one rarely comes into contact here in Europe.

On Kel’s site you can see her contributions – besides her other fantastic comics – and just because of them I’m tempted to support the production of volume four Oceania.

Afterword

I have already introduced another web comic with a fairy tale theme in Chapter 1 „Reluctant Heroines“: Namesake, in addition to that I had asked on Twitter for tips and got some interesting suggestions. If anyone wants more reading material: Twitter request.

Do you know the comics or other works of the artists? Do they sound interesting to you?
What other fairy tale comics have you come across?

Anne/PoiSonPaiNter

© For the pictures lie with their respective creators. I merely used them as example of their work and hope that’s okay.

Webcomics: Chapter Three – The Squirrely Ones

Lies auf Deutsch

A long time ago I planned to turn this thing into something regular on Wednesday. Me and plans, we still don’t like each other …

Anyway, as Katherina Ushachov (aka Evanesca) was looking for a few people to help promote her (German) novel „Zarin Saltan“ (Tzaritza Saltan) on today’s Squirrel Appreciation Day – yes, that’s a thing – I decided to make a schedule-exception and write about two comics that have squirrel-characters. Neat, right? 😀
(By the way: There will be another Fairy Tale Summer where I’ll talk about the Tzaritza some more.)

But let’s begin …

El Goonish Shive

I don’t remember when I discovered Dan Shives‘ El Goonish Shive, but it’s something I still enjoy reading.
It started off as a relatively poorly drawn comic, with no real plot, just two best friends living their lives in a world where lots of things were possible (like „Anime Style Material Arts“) because: Magic. Over its course the story picked up, the world building got stronger and the art got incredibly better. There was now reason to certain actions – without loosing „Magic’s flare for the dramatic“ – and the characters became deeper and more grounded.

Grace as squirely pirate

Updated three times a week the comic is accompanied by sometimes random, sometimes canon side-story the EGS:NP (currently running an instalment of Goonmanji, a Jumanji parody) and occasional sketches (like the one on the right).

There are many fun and diverse (gender, race and sexualities) characters. Nerdy and proud, yet vulnerable Susan being by far one of my favourites. The topics that are explored range from dating issues over teenage crime fighting up to world domination plots, all with a joke around the corner and good portion of magic.

As this is a post about squirrels let’s talk a bit about Grace. One of the main characters and a human-squirrel-alien hybrid. (Yes, there is not just magic, but also aliens in EGS, the main ones are called Uryoums). She can be horribly naive and oblivious to the things happening around her, due to her secluded upbringing, but when her friends need protection she becomes the badass fighter she was bred to be.
So look out, for this Squirrel might kick your ass! 😀

Twokinds


This is another webcomic where I don’t know how long I’ve been reading it. At some point I just stumbled across Twokinds by Thomas Fischbach and got drawn into the story due to its amazing art.

Though that’s not the only thing about it. While I have to admit that I haven’t quite figured everything out about this world filled with Keidrans (Canine- or Feline-based bipedal sentient animals) , Basitins (other animal creatures, that are not dogs) and Humans and their (racial) conflicts, do I enjoy following the characters journeys.

Mrs. Nibbly

And there are several journeys happening with the vast cast depicted above. Sure some of it is a bit too sexualized for my taste, but the Keidran characters act a lot according to their base instincts (the banner above portrays them with way more clothing than some of them usually wear). As this is also a story focusing a lot on its main character, is it another story, where I don’t like them. 😀 Instead I root for the side characters like the Wolf Natani who has to rediscover his own identity after his mind has been merged with that of his brother for a long time.

Another very minor character is Mrs. Nibbly, she is – you probably guessed it by the picture – a squirrel! A pretty smart and cool one at that, and also very brave. She just appeared out of nowhere at some point and stayed with the group, but I have a feeling there is more to her than meets the eye … she’s far too clever be „just“ a squirrel …

Afterword

I hope you enjoyed this little look into two great webcomics. 🙂
Have you read them?
Do you know others with similar themes?
Let me know in the comments below!

If you’re a German reader, make sure to check the German version of this post. 😉

PoiSonPaiNter

© For the pictures lie with their respective creators. I merely used them as example of their work and hope that’s okay.
____________________________

Read in English

Webcomics: Die Eichhörnigen

Vor langer Zeit hatte ich mir vorgenommen, dieses Ding am Mittwoch in etwas Regelmäßiges zu verwandeln. Ich und Pläne, wir mögen uns immer noch nicht

Als Katherina Ushachov (alias Evanesca) am heutigen Welteichhörnchentag – ja, das gibt es – auf der Suche nach ein paar Leuten war, die für ihren (deutschen) Roman „Zarin Saltan“ werben wollen, entschied ich mich, eine Zeitplan-Ausnahme zu machen und über zwei Comics mit Eichhörnchen-Charakteren zu schreiben. Passend, nicht wahr? 😀
(Übrigens: Es wird einen weiteren Märchensommer geben, in dem ich noch etwas mehr über die Zarin sprechen werde.)

Aber lasst uns anfangen …

El Goonish Shive

Ich kann mich nicht erinnern, wann ich Dan Shives‘ El Goonish Shive entdeckt habe, aber es ist etwas, das ich immer noch gerne lese.
Es begann als relativ schlecht gezeichneter Comic, ohne wirkliche Handlung, nur zwei beste Freunde, die ihr Leben in einer Welt leben, in der vieles möglich war (wie „Anime Style Material Arts„), weil: Magie. Im Laufe der Zeit, wurde die Geschichte ausgebaut, das Worldbuilding wurde fundierter und der Zeichenstil hat sich unglaublich verbessert. Es gab nun Gründe für gewisse Aktionen – ohne „Magies Vorliebe für das Dramatische“ zu verlieren – und die Charaktere haben mehr Tiefe und Erdung bekommen.

Grace als eichhörnige Piratin

Dreimal wöchentlich aktualisiert, wird der Comic von einer manchmal zufälligen, manchmal kanonischen Nebengeschichte begleitet, der EGS:NP (derzeit laufen Folgen von Goonmanji, einer Jumanji-Parodie) und gelegentlichen Skizzen (wie die rechts).
Es gibt viele lustige und abwechslungsreiche Charaktere (Geschlecht, Rasse und Sexualität). Die nerdige und stolze, aber verletzliche Susan, zählt bei weitem zu meinen Favoriten. Die Themen, die verarbeitet werden, reichen von Dating Problemen über Teenie-Detektive, bis hin zu Weltherrschaftplots, alles mit einem Witz hinter jeder Ecke und einem guten Teil Magie.

Da dies ein Beitrag über Eichhörnchen ist, lasst uns ein wenig über Grace reden. Eine der Hauptcharaktere und ein Mensch-Eichhörnchen-Alien-Hybrid. (Ja, es gibt nicht nur Magie, sondern auch Aliens in EGS, die wichtigsten heißen Uryoums). Sie kann schrecklich naiv und ahnungslos gegenüber Dingen sein, die um sie herum geschehen aufgrund ihrer abgesonderten Erziehung, aber, wenn ihre Freunde in Gefahr sind, wird sie zur badass Kämpfer, zu der sie gezüchtet wurde.
Pass auf, denn dieses Eichhörnchen könnte dich umhauen! 😀

Twokinds


Dies ist ein weiterer Webcomic, bei dem ich nicht weiß, wie lange ich ihn schon lese. Irgendwann bin ich über Twokinds von Thomas Fischbach gestolpert und wurde durch seine erstaunlichen Zeichnungen in die Geschichte hineingezogen.

Obwohl das nicht das Einzige daran ist. Zwar muss ich zugeben, dass ich noch nicht alles über diese Welt mit Keidrans (Zweifüßlern auf Hunde- oder Katzen-Basis), Basitins (andere Tierkreaturen, die keine Hunde sind) und Menschen und ihren (Rassen-)Konflikten verstanden habe, aber ich genieße es, den Reisen der Charaktere zu folgen.

Mrs. Nibbly

Und es gibt mehrere Reisen, der riesigen Besetzung, die oben abgebildet ist. Sicherlich ist einiges davon für meinen Geschmack ein wenig zu sexualisiert, aber die Keidran-Charaktere handeln viel nach ihrem Grundinstinkt (das Banner oben zeigt sie mit viel mehr Kleidung, als manche von ihnen normalerweise tragen). Da dies auch eine Geschichte ist, die sich sehr stark auf die Hauptfigur konzentriert, ist es eine andere Geschichte, in der ich sie nicht mag. 😀 Stattdessen feure ich die Nebencharaktere an, wie den Wolf Natani, der seine eigene Identität wiederentdecken muss, nachdem sein Geist lange Zeit mit dem seines Bruders verschmolzen war.

Eine weitere sehr unbedeutende Figur ist Mrs. Nibbly, sie ist – ihr haben es wahrscheinlich auf dem Bild erraten – ein Eichhörnchen! Ein ziemlich kluges und cooles dazu, und auch sehr mutig. Sie tauchte einfach irgendwann aus dem Nichts auf und blieb bei der Gruppe, aber ich habe das Gefühl, dass sie mehr zu bieten hat, als man auf den ersten Blick sieht…. sie ist viel zu klug, um „nur“ ein Eichhörnchen zu sein….

Nachwort

Ich hoffe, dass euch dieser kleine Einblick in zwei großartige Webcomics gefallen hat.
Habt ihr sie gelesen?
Kennt ihr andere mit ähnlichen Themen?
Lasst es mich in den Kommentaren unten wissen!

(5/9)

Oh, schau! Da hat das #SchusselHörnchen doch tatsächlich eine Nuss hier gelassen!

Falls du nicht weißt, was du damit anfangen sollst, empfehle ich dir katherinas Beitrag dazu:
Schusseliges Eichhörnchen Schnitzeljagd zum Welteichhörnchentag mit Verlosung

Viel Erfolg bei der weiteren Suche. 😉

PoiSonPaiNter

© Für die Bilder liegen bei ihren jeweiligen Schöpfern. Ich habe sie lediglich als Beispiel für ihre Arbeit benutzt und hoffe, dass das in Ordnung ist.

An Update on Writing

I know there (again) has been a lack of content lately, but this time for a good reason: I’m busy writing stories!
But I’ll get to that a bit later, as today I’d like to talk about writing stuff in general and stuff I did more or less recently.
Two years ago the Bücherstadt Kurier published their March volume including my story „Nebeljagd“ (Mist Hunt). This was the first of my stories that has ever been published in a proper medium and not just on this Blog or on DF.PP Entertainment or in The Forum (back when it still existed 🙁 ).
I remember being so proud of this.
I remember calling my Mum right away after I received the mail with the amazing „You’ve been chosen“-line.
I remember printing out the story and showing it to her and the smile on her face.
I also remember what happened next.
For me those two things will forever be remembered together: My first success and my biggest loss.
Still, that didn’t keep me from continuing, I knew she would have (verbally) kicked my ass if I had dared to do that. Just giving up, wasn’t quite her style. 😉
It took me more than a month to at least be willing to write again, the result being „Ein neuer Tag“ (A New Day), starting there a lot of my writings involved darker tones about loss, flight and/or death.
Part of me used this to talk about my own experiences and thoughts, another part just found it fitting for a characters‘ journey. I believe a prime example of this is Mina’s side-story from my second Advent Calendar.
I’m fairly certain that „Der Weckruf“ (The Wake-up call) was the first story I published on a Blog after it all happened – in retrospective it’s quite a fitting title for the situation – not counting „Der Zufluchtsort“ (The Haven), which was the last story I finished the day before it happened and scheduled for the day after. Still, from there I kind of got back into things.
Your Picture – A Story“ was (kind of still is, even if I didn’t manage to write anything for it these last couple of months…) a good outlet for me to just explore different topics and characters without going into too much details thanks to the word count. This was also where you could see the changes I mentioned earlier the most.
Another new step I made regarding my stories was/is attending a Lesebühne (Reading Stage) where I read them aloud in front of an audience (in a pub). It’s always a thrill to do that and I’m nervous time and again. Though there is rarely any feedback: A few people told me they enjoyed the stories, someone said the stories I read improved over time, another encouraged me to try my luck with a publisher, others had minor complains, but most of them said nothing. It’s still an interesting experience and with the amount of Short Stories I have yet to read (or write) I have quite some stuff still unknown to the listeners.
Speaking of trying my luck: I also managed to win Eve Estelles’s writing contest, twice, without actually expecting to do so:


With „The Raven’s Omen“ and the „Campfire Tale„, I impressed her enough to let me win and those two are also prime examples of my English Short Stories, as I usually tend to write those in German. The only downside to this is my pessimism coming into play here and telling me I only won, because (it feels like) there wasn’t much competition.
I am very pessimistic (in general and especially) when it comes to my stories, I like them, but I rarely think they’re good enough for anyone else to like them, so it came as quite a surprise when fruehstuecksflocke asked me to become a part of #Projekt24. With „Blind Date„, I hope I made an adequate addition to it. This project will soon be not just available on his Blog, but more on that when it’s officially announced. 😉
With my success here I also tried to add an entry to the Literary Advent Calendar of the Bücherstadt Kurier and some people quite laughed at my take on „The Crib„.
When this year began I told you about three stories I edited/translated for another project, namely: Ein neuer Tag, „The Quest for Ore“ and another one called „Verloren“ (Lost). These three are for Projekt Myra as exchange for some advertisement they did and as they still wanted/liked to get more I sat down to write out another of my organ-concert-ideas (see link Ein neuer Tag) concerning the Dwarfworld, I came up with back when writing The Quest for Ore and drafting Verloren. That story, however, did not want to be a Short Story and has by now roughly 30k of written out scenes and notes under the (working?) title: Der Wunsch der Königin (The Queen’s Wish). It’s still a lot of work to do and I’m still not entirely convinced it fits into the corner of Myra that we decided on – and again, that they really like what I’m writing-, but we’ll see once I’m done. Which I hopefully will be one day and don’t let it go to waste (like Michael’s story that I still haven’t managed to properly write down). Unfortunately I’m already kind of bored of writing out the notes and missing scenes, as motivation plays a rather huge part in my process and when the voice in the back of my head tells me something is not worth doing, then I have the tendency to listen to it, which is awful and counterproductive and absolutely annoying.
Another annoying thing is me jumping between ideas. As soon as one pops up I want to pursue it and everything else is then put aside (like writing this post, when I should be doing something else 😉 ). One of the last times this happened I had nearly/finally finished with last years Advent Calendar and then I somehow decided to write two more stories. The first one was the Christmas story „Santa’s Helper“ that I kind of feel like continuing in this year’s Calendar, though I’m not sure if I really should – any thoughts?
The other was „Winter Moon“ that I did get carried away with and which now has the basics for the twelfth chapters I speculate to write under the working title „Neubrandenwolf„. Though I still don’t know whether I should publish a Chapter a month (close to the full moon) or just publish as soon as I’m finished, Twitter wasn’t helpful for that decision…
The idea-jumps doesn’t make it any easier to get anything done though, quite the contrary. They are especially awful when it comes to the Fanfictions I started over the years that are still not finished yet, especially as I kind of took a year long break from them. Though I did manage to update 3/4 stories by now, even if updating one of the stories was recently postponed by writing the first ~7k version of The Queens Wish and then finished after I dreamed about one of the characters pulling me towards him…
Still, they’re a great medium where you technically don’t have to think up that much regarding the worlds you write in and just can explore different story lines with existing characters. Which doesn’t mean I did not think things through, because that would be impossible for me, as I want things to make sense, even if that makes things more complicated and nearly as bad, as if I thought up my own worlds.
Anyway, a few people keep telling me I have a talent for writing and that I should try sending stuff to a publisher, but the voice in the back of my head, still tells me that I’m not good enough, that the stuff I write is too full of clichés, too boring, too simple and that no one would want/like to read it anyway (hence the lack of motivation at times). I really don’t know whom I should listen to, but that doesn’t mean I won’t keep writing – and potentially improving. All this stuff has to get out of my head somehow. There are still too many stories left untold that I don’t even dare to think about to not get distracted by them…
But don’t worry, you will get a few things to read in the future – whether you like them or not. 😉
PoiSonPaiNter
P.S. Still not any better at naming things. 😉

Webcomics: Chapter Two – Things that go bump in the night

I think it’s time to talk a bit about comics again, it’s been a while. As I said before is Hiveworks a treasure trove for great comics and I’d like to introduce you to these two relatively new titles.
I’m not entirely sure why I chose the spooky theme for this though. Maybe it’s because I recently finished reading The Sandman; maybe it’s because I’m already contemplating a Halloween-vacation to Ireland again; maybe it’s because I’ve drafted a sequel to Winter Moon and am thinking about expanding it further; maybe it’s because both comics are seemingly at a tipping point for the narration into something quite interesting; maybe it’s just because I want to write about them.
Take your pick and enjoy the read. 😉

Black Grass

© kino


This comic literally starts with something that goes bump in the night, so it was kind of also the inspiration for the title.
Black Grass tells the story of Reverent Abel Ruby (front) who besides being a preacher is also a medium (according to the description is he also clairvoyant, but that hasn’t appeared yet) and therefore able to interact with ghosts. One ghost in particular – Blue Valentine (back) gets him into a rather sticky situation involving hellish bureaucracy…
What drew me to this comic was pretty much the whole idea of a preacher-medium and I’m certain that DarkFairy’s Coelestin is entirely to blame for this – and I made sure to tell her about it when I discovered the comic (back in May last year apparently o.O) – even if he so far only had to deal with celestial poultry. 😀
Anyway, with close to a 100 pages it’s easy to catch up with this one – and hard to write about it without giving too much away, especially as the narration is quite fluid and fast. The characters are great and lovely and definitely not what you’d expect at first glance, especially Rejean seems to have a few more tricks up their sleeves that I’m quite looking forward to see…
I also really like the art style, the play with colours (especially when including the neon ones) and the way the different characters (humans, ghosts, demons) are designed. It balances well between light hearted humour and serious topics (death, duh) and I’m really curious where the story will lead.

Headless Bliss

© Chloé C


Headless Bliss by Chloé C in turn has a more adult air about it. It deals with nightmares, demons, cannibalism, but most of all: stories; or rather: What happens to the stories a writer abandons?
The Comic tells the story of Sinaj an incomplete story, created by a human, that tries to find meaning in her existence. On her way she encounters demon princess Annùn and the two of them become quite unusual friends. When Annùn’s mother Diov throws a human, that carries around the head of its twin (see picture), into the celebratory battle for her daughter things start going from bad to worse…

With a combination of an intriguing and intentionally „ugly“ (read not clean cut, but wobbly, weird and horrific) drawing style (befitting the genre) and interesting story telling, world building and characters this comic makes for a great read, even if some scenes are quite gruesome and disturbing (especially the tale of the Twins). It’s definitely not for for the faint hearted…
The story telling aspect itself is well interwoven in between the struggles of and between the characters and underlined with fascinating usage of movement without using panels and different kinds of narrative styles. One of the background stories is even told as another characters‘ weird dreams and as someone who also has veeery strange dreams that is something I can definitely relate to.
Interesting thing to know: It’s becoming more and more clear that this story has a larger connection to Chloé’s other work Go Get a Roomie, not just its creator. 😉

Afterword

I hoped you enjoyed this little look into two great webcomics. 🙂
Have you read them?
Do you know others with similar themes?
Let me know in the comments below!
I know at least a couple of other comics with a similar theme, but on the one hand do I prefer focusing on two at a time with these things and on the the other hand do I think that they would work well enough on their own too.
So stay tuned for future updates.
PoiSonPaiNter

© For the pictures lie with their respective creators. I merely used them as example of their work and hope that’s okay.

Webcomics: Prologue – Looking for Something

Remember when I told you about the amazing female leads in two webcomics and dubbed it Chapter One? Well, seems like you’ll be getting a belated Prologue today, as one can’t start properly before talking about the beginning…
That and the fact that I really like Prologues….
Anyway, as I mentioned in the Introduction were Fred and Notfunny my „gate way“ into comics and Webcomics in general, but what really got me hooked on reading them was

Looking for Group

(c) Ryan Sohmer & Lar Desouza


The webcomic by writer Ryan Sohmer and artist Lar (Lartist) Desouza tells the story of the elf Cale’anon (the one in the front) who just wants to be a hero, to do good, to help people, but is more often than not faced with decisions he wouldn’t naturally approve of. It’s not helping that the group he ends up travelling with includes the fourth wall breaking, easily bored, over-powered, homicidal and basically utterly ridiculous un-dead Warlock Richard (the one in the upper right corner), the witty and destructive priest Benn’joon (short Benny – in the middle with the staff), her Bloodrage father and scholar Krunch (on the left with the book), the crafty, bardic Dwarf Pella and bloodthirsty panther Sooba (both not depicted).
What makes this story fun is the clashing of these characters and their ways of solving problems. E.g. while Cale is still negotiating, Richard gets bored and just „FWOOSH“es the opposition (aka burns them to crisps with a – red – fire ball).
It basically started as run of the mill parody comic for the fantasy genre, gaming and pop culture in general (it’s filled with references: Lord of the Rings, World of Warcraft, Star Wars, Mary Poppins just to name a few) and turned into something way more epic in it’s own terms. For any new reader it’s a long way to go, but a worthy one.
When I first discovered it through a recommendation in The Forum I didn’t really give it much credit, the art was strange and the story was over the top, but the humour soon captured me – especially Richard’s, he’s so delightfully, well, Richard. The more I read the better art and story became until it reached the standard it has today. Sure there are still story lines that don’t really make sense and I’ve lost track of a lot of side stories by now (I believe I caught up when they were around book 15 and by now they’re in book 36), but I still return to the site whenever there is an update or I want to re-read something old.
Sure Cale is a typical main character, but there is so much thrown into his way that it’s fun again to watch his journey – especially the Archmage story line is incredible.
Sure there are times where the story just doesn’t seem to move on, but that’s a small price for what Sohmer & Lar offer their audience.
By now the universe expanded far beyond just Looking for Group, there are now also NPC stories, telling more about characters that only appeared briefly in the main arcs in tales drawn by different unknown/young/new artists and the Tiny Dick Adventures, where Richard comments on real life happenings – with a twist.
It’s fascinating to see the world that Sohmer created grow, see old story lines come back around and new ones starting. It’s the mix of the (bizarre) characters, the oddities and the seriousness beneath it all that makes this one special.
And Richard will certainly be amongst my favourite characters for a very long time (it is partly his fault that I keep naming characters Richard o.O).

Afterword

I hope you enjoyed this little look into my first long-term-commitment Webcomic. 🙂
Have you read it?
Do you know others with similar themes?
Let me know in the comments below!
If any one is interested: I’ve been eyeing this thing and also been using a LFG wallpaper of Lil‘ Richard and The Bunny – that is seemingly no longer available except as cover art of book 4 – for years now.

For Pony!

PoiSonPaiNter
© For the picture lies with its creators. I merely used it as example of their work and hope that’s okay.

Webcomics: Chapter One – Reluctant Heroines

It’s been a while since I (re-)posted my introduction to Webcomics, but it’s about time that I actually turn it into a serial here on the Blog. Especially as today is Free Comic Book Day – and I can’t participate as we have our own version with different comics next week – and I’ve therefore had a super-hero-ish day on Twitter earlier.
And as tomorrow is mother’s day (over here?), I decided to start by looking at two comics with incredible female leads!

Strong Female Protagonist

© Molly Ostertag & Brennan Lee Mulligan

A lot of webcomic creators use each others help to get over taking a break and I am fairly certain that it was either a guest comic or an advertisement from one of the many other webcomics I read that lead me to this one.

At first I wasn’t quite sure about Strong Female Protagonist by Brennan Lee Mulligan and Molly Ostertag. It felt as if everything was just starting, even if it was already running for a while when I discovered it. The name of this webcomic might sound like a working title or just a note saying what someone wants the story to be about, but the story itself is so much more.

Main character Alison Green is a young woman that used to be an invulnerable, strong superhero, but retired to lead a normal life, yet that doesn’t really work out the way she wants it to. The story follows her struggles not just with her powers, but also with her differing views and ideals. Intentions and arguments are incredibly well explained and combined with a very nice and great – strong? – drawing style. The movements of the characters feel as natural as their decisions and feelings.
It’s slice of life, but not in a cheesy way, instead it’s more natural/realistic and definitely thought provoking.
Especially a story line concerning Alison’s dad got to me quite badly, as it hadn’t been that long that I’ve been through a similar thing when I read it.

This is not your typical Superhero story. It’s a story about a young woman, in a technologically advanced world with superheroes, wanting to do good – the right thing – that utilizes her special abilities and determination to change things, but doesn’t shy from making others see her point through well thought through arguments and accepting their opinions as well.

Namesake

© Megan Lavey-Heaton & Isabelle Melançon

On the other hand there is Namesake by Megan Lavey-Heaton & Isabelle Melançon where main character Emma Crewe (front) is all but thrown into her „hero“ life.

In this story, that I stumbled upon over at Hiveworks (a great source to discover new comics, by the way), we follow her journey into the world of Oz and learn bit by bit more about the bigger picture of what makes Emma special and what evil (?) lurks in the background.

Where SFP goes for realism, Namesake has a few very interesting Fantasy elements. Magic is possible, Fairy Tale worlds are real and there are people carrying the name of Fairy Tale characters that have to live (or suffer) through parts of the stories we know from the books that are written afterwards by the writers in charge of the „Namesakes“.

Still, the existence of Fantasy elements does not mean the characters don’t act reasonable, quite the contrary. Emma is one of the few lead characters that I like (which is VERY RARE) because she struggles with her role, with her powers and most of all: Questions why the hell she is supposed to do something and what the hell she is supposed to do?! 😀 Where SFP is filled with calm contemplation, Namesake runs on a lot of situation humour and very human (read: flawed) characters.

It’s fun, it’s lovely and again incredibly drawn (though I have to admit I’ve mistaken a few characters for each other on occasion…) with a quite interesting colour schemes and really fun characters.

Afterword

I hoped you enjoyed this little look into two great webcomics. 🙂
Have you read them?
Do you know others with similar themes?
Let me know in the comments below!

As next week is „Gratis Comic Tag“ (Free Comic Book Day) here, I might write another instalment of this about two more comics, not sure which ones, but we’ll see.

PoiSonPaiNter

© For the pictures lie with their respective creators. I merely used them as example of their work and hope that’s okay.

JourneyQuest: The Epic you never expected to find

My Nerd-Week is long over and the next one isn’t approaching any time soon, but I feel the need to tell you a bit about this web series I already – indirectly – mentioned back then.

What is it about?

Season 1 Cover

JourneyQuest by Zombie Orpheus Entertainment tells the story of a group of adventurers consisting of the Priest Carrow, the Warrior Glorion, the Rouge Nara and the dyslexic Wizard Perf on their quest to find the Sword of Fighting.

It also tells the story of Bard-Apprentice Wren trying to become a real Bard through writing down the story of the adventurers as her very own first Epic. As Bard she has to stay neutral and not interfere with the Quest itself and can only gather information from the side lines.

Needless to say neither the groups‘ nor the Bards‘ plans go as they expected…

The watching experience

JourneyQuest currently consists of two Seasons with seven and ten ~10 minute episodes each, that can be found on YouTube and other sites.

The shortness of the episode makes it a fast watch, but it also makes you yearn for more, as you really want to know how the well written story will continue. It occasionally feels like the story isn’t moving forward because of it, but I guess that’s to be expected from a serial that is completely fan-funded and therefore limited in budget and resources.

Yet, that does not meant that they don’t put effort into it. Quite the contrary.
There are scenic shots of forests, castles, dungeons, there are interesting costume and make-up choices for both the main cast and additional characters/creatures like Gargoyles, Orcs and Zombie’s that look quite natural, even if still quite phantastic.
They even added an Orcish language and other additional things like spells and potions that sometimes aren’t that common in normal adventures (e.g. taking a potions to understand a different language instead of mastering the skill for it).

They use several questing tropes throughout the story (lying Gargoyles, talking Swords, spell-mishaps, … ), but they are incorporated well enough to not make them seem simple and dull.

All in all a great – if short – watch, where you just can sit back and enjoy the story.

The characters

The characters are as unique as they come, even if they follow some stereotypes as well.
Dyslexic (and therefore nearly entirely useless) wizard Perf certainly reminds me of Rincewind from Terry Pratchett’s Discworld, but he is far less cynical and way more adorable and dorky. His antics are highlighted by his interactions with other characters like the single/simple-minded Glorion or clever/snarky Nara, who both hold their own in their respective fields.

Just as Wren’s struggle to complete her Epic is just as interesting as Carrows inner conflict with a certain predicament he was put into.

Though that doesn’t mean these sides are all the characters have. They are surprisingly versatile and have a few funny/interesting surprises up their sleeves. 😉

But not just the main cast is well thought through, the side characters all seem to have their own story that lingers behind their short appearances in the main storyline.

With the stereotypes you’re presented, you expect a few things, but it feels like the characters often don’t care about that and do something entirely different and that’s what I really like about them.
They’re just so unpredictable, funny and great.

General Opinion

I’ve known JourneyQuest for quite some time now, thoughI have no idea how I discovered it, but I’m glad I did.
The characters are great, different and just as much fun as the guys from The Gamers (which incidentally are partly played by the same actors, especially in the later movies).

It’s just a lot of fun to watch and follow the stories of these characters or in other words:

Go watch it! 😀

Stuff I’d like to add

They’re currently running a Kickstarter campaign. So if I piqued your interest make sure to check it out and support the production of Season 3!
I’m certain it will be as much fun as the previous Seasons.

Onwa~rd!

PoiSonPaiNter

© For the Cover belongs to its rightful owner.

Mara und der Feuerbringer

As start into the new year I decided to make another special week of posts. You might remember the Book-Week, now you get the Nerd-Week with seven nerdy posts ahead!

As first part of the Nerd-Week I’d like to introduce you to this gem of a movie: Mara und der Feuerbringer or in English: Mara and the Firebringer. Based on the first part of the book trilogy of the same name by Tommy Krappweis this movie is one of the few German Fantasy movies and I simply want to give it a bit more – much deserved – spotlight.

What is it about?

The official poster

15 year old Mara Lorbeer only wants to be a normal teenager, but with a weird Wiccan mum and the fact that a twig told her that she was a Nordic-Germanic Seer (Spákona), chosen to stop Anorak, uhm, Ragnarök that is not an easy feat.

Burdened with visions of the Norse half-god Loki breaking free from his bonds she soon realises that it’s not just her imagination when she actually stands right in front of him and is tasked with the rescue of his wife Sigyn.

Still, she struggles with her fate and takes up the help of Norse Mythology expert Professor Weisinger, as she doesn’t have a clue about Anoraks, Norse gods or the whole having-to-save-the-world-business.

The watching experience

I told you a bit about this movie already here: What’cha Watching Wednesday, so I’m lazy and just quote it:

At first I thought I wouldn’t manage to see Mara und der Feuerbringer (Mara and the Firebringer), due to some scheduling issues in the marketing, but then I found out that it was screened in Greifswald and I took Schmusi and Anna from the HGWAnime with me to see it and we had a lot of fun. Finally a German Fantasy movie that isn’t as stoic and flat as German movies tend to be, has interesting characters, an interesting plot and funny dialogues. With songs like Echter wahrer Held/True Genuine Hero by Schandmaul it also has a nice soundtrack. Schmusi first thought it was [actor] Jan Josef Liefers doing the singing until I told her it was the singer of one of the bands that first got me hooked on Metal. 😀

That is a pretty good summary of what I like about this movie, but let me expand on that a little.

The marketing for this movie was pretty screwed up as the German cinema wants to put things into a category, but Mara can’t be put into the existing ones, so the one that was chosen turned out to be the wrong one (if your German is good enough, you can check out this comment by Tommy Krappweis for more information). Barely any cinemas even played the movie, others played it once or twice, then dropped it (like the one in Neubrandenburg) and a few ones kept it a bit longer (like Greifswald). So when I first saw the times it would air, I didn’t think I’d be able to see it in the cinema, but then I found the viewing mentioned above and simply wanted to use that chance to see it.

Schmusi, Anna and I had the cinema for ourselves, so I could tell them a bit about the pre-story and the fact that I personally met one of the extras.
Short version: The books were read and even beta-read with a few selected users from The Forum and one of those users (Simon the Sorcerer) managed to participate in the filming. So when his scene was shown I was a bit side tracked from the actual story line, ups… 😀
But as soon as I got the DVD I re-watched it and figured out what a certain Hobbit-extra had to say about wanting to got to the Oktoberfest. 😉

Basically: It’s a lot of fun to watch, even during a re-watch. 🙂
(Unless you’re like my Dad, who has no connection to stuff like this at all…)

The characters

Mara isn’t your typical main character, far from it. She struggles with her destiny and the powers Loki gives her to save Sigyn. At some point she basically gives up, because she’s afraid to become someone like Darth Vader or Voldemort and thinks through this in a very funny way. Still, she overcomes this fear and gets back to saving the world in a witty and clever way.

As the movie is only an adaptation of the books, you only get to see glimpses of the other characters. Professor Weissinger is a man in his mid-forties(?) ready to jump at the chance to experiences all the stuff he’d studied and so far only encountered in books and relics, but he is also a great support for Mara, as it is his knowledge that helps her understand the mess she was dragged into. With his curiosity and awkwardness he creates a few very funny scenes.

Speaking of awkwardness: Mara’s mum, she’s wonderfully awkward and it doesn’t seem overblown, but very natural. She’s one of those Wiccan’s that take themselves far too serious and it’s great.

Loki, Sigyn and the others rarely get any screen time, but they make the few times count. E.g. do I really like the way those two talk – especially Loki’s way of thanking Mara… 😀 Though it is slightly irritating that they use the „Loki is Thor’s brother“-narration for the movie. It’s either because they decided to make it more relateable for the audiences due to the success of the Marvel-approach or they found something that actually makes them brothers in the myths as well, as everything else is in the movie is well researched.

[Edit: Tommy actually answered this question in a Tweet around the time of the TV-premier of the movie. He wrote (translation): According to the Edda one could also proclaim: Odin is the Father of Gods and therefore also Loki’s father.]

Special about all these characters is that they don’t talk the way that is usually used in German movies and television and that is really refreshing and great. 🙂
But not just that is a realistic display:

  • Mara falls asleep at some point from exhaustion
  • You can see wounds, water, dirt, sweat and ashes on the characters clothes and bodies, not everything is magically clean
  • A lot of attention was paid to historical correctness, like the clothes and settings for the Norse characters

General Opinion

I really enjoy the eye for details, the languages used, the way the characters interact so normally. It’s a refreshing way of storytelling.

Or to quote myself again:

If you get the chance: Definitely check this one out!

Stuff I’d like to add

Interesting for English readers: The DVD/Blu-Ray comes with English subtitles, I don’t know if there will be an English version – and I didn’t dare to ask Tommy, even though he seems to be someone who wouldn’t mind answering questions from his viewers…

Why did I chose this movie as opener for my Nerd-Week?

Short answer: Because I can. 😀

Long answer:
Apart from the Fandom-references mentioned above there is a lot that went on behind the scenes, starting from Reeanctors/LARPer participating as extras in both the movie and the music video, over Cosplayers providing costumes and the song being based on a version from an old webseries about dimensional jumps through sneezing, up to the fact that a lot of fans from all kinds of Fandoms promoted the movie.
As I said did a lot go wrong with the marketing, but fans wouldn’t back down and organized additional screenings in cinemas or at conventions and attended them in full periodic outfits.
Then there is the fact that it was planned to be played only a couple of times at the RPC (Roleplay Convention), but ended up being played in a loop (and also received an award as Best German Fantasy Movie in the last 30 Years).
As soon as someone got wind of the project and its failing success due to the horrible screening times, those who liked it passed it on in their respective Fandoms and I believe that’s what being a Nerd is about: Enjoying something and sharing it with your friends and in this case even helping out a great project that would otherwise go completely unnoticed [Edit: (a German documentary about all this and more can be found at Rocket Beans TV) [/Edit].

So here I am continuing that and sharing it with you. 🙂

PoiSonPaiNter

© For the poster belongs to its rightful owner.

BiblioSmiles' Summer Book Challenge 2014

A couple of days ago the BiblioSmiles literature Blog posted a reading challenge for the summer that really sounded interesting:

When I was little, every summer my town library would have a summer book challenge to keep our young brains from turning to mush from all the sunshine and lack of schooling. Or video games. It might have been video games.
For every book you read, you logged it, and you accumulated points, earning little trinkets like those erasers in the shapes of ice cream cones, or wacky pencils, or puntastic posters. Being the little budding lit nerd I was, I was all over that.[…]
So, for summer 2014, here’s the 10 Book Challenge that I’m going to attempt to accomplish between June and August. Ten books has us at 3.3 books a month, which may be ambitious depending on the sort of books we choose. But that’s why it’s a challenge! Based on what books you pick, this can either be really difficult or fairly whimsical and easy.
From: Summer Book Challenge 2014

In short: The challenge consists of 10 categories to choose a book from (and a bonus category) and to read them in the months from June to August.
As I recently started to properly read again (as in: not starting a book and letting it lie somewhere for years) is this challenge also interesting for me to read some of the books that still wait in my shelve(s).
Even though I am a relatively fast reader (200-400 pages are a short read for me), if I would actually try to read ten books in three (by now two and a half) months I wouldn’t really be able to finish the challenge as this time of the year is also the festival season and I’m also otherwise occupied at times.
The beginning of the month was already covered with my Journey Through a bit of Germany and the Metalfest, for which I will add travel logs and report later.
The next one (Rockharz) will follow mid July and maybe another one in August (M’era Luna), taking away time on the weekend that I would otherwise spent reading.
Therefore I picked a book fitting for the category, but I will read them in my own pace and not within the set time limit and post a review linking back to the challenge afterwards.
This way I’ll do some proper reading and be able to add a few book reviews to my Blog.
But let’s have a look at the

The Categories and the Books

I have chosen.
1. A book you always meant to get around to
As my list of unread books is just as long as BiblioSmiles‘ Gabrieles, this one isn’t really an easy choice. But as I am tired of not properly understanding the movies have I chosen „The Lord of the Rings“ for this one, though I am not sure if I’ll also add „The Hobbit“ and „The Silmarillion“ to get the complete grasp of the story.
2. Reread a childhood favorite
This one is actually easy as I just picked the one that first came to mind when thinking about books I read when I was a child/teenager: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. I’m curious already if I’ll like the book as much as I did back then or if I’ll ruin the memory with this. >_<
3. A book someone else picks for you
As many people have recommended it for me I’ll actually start with the „Game of Thrones“ series. The alternative suggestion I got from DarkFairy would be the first book of James Barclay’s „Chronicles of the Raven„, but as I am still missing most of that series this is more difficult to read than the other one.
4. A book in a genre you don’t usually read
I hope young adult fiction counts for this… It still has some Fantasy elements, but it is aimed at a far younger audience. The book I’ve chosen is Melvin Burgess‘ „Tiger, Tiger“ that I’m already reading as it is one of four books I wanted to actually read before they might be swapped in the Book Hotel I’ll be staying at with my mum towards the end of July.
5. Something originally written in another language
Well, so far every book I’ve chosen was originally written in another language (English). We do have a couple of good (fantasy) authors here in Germany, but the majority of books are still translated into German. Nevertheless have I chosen a book that I will also read in English (just like GoT, but that’s mostly because the German versions are all split into two books) and whose special edition I have borrowed from Nazgul: „The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy“ (which incidentally was Gabrieles suggestion for 3.)
6. A book in a different format
This one I have also already started reading before knowing about the Challenge. It’s an Anthology (collection of short stories) that was created for the anniversary of The Forum. It’s called „Unter dem Weltenbaum“ (Underneath the World Tree) and contains stories about the roots, trunk and branches of the Arbor Phantastica or Yggdrasil by different authors. I sent two of my stories (Unterwelt and Erde), into the competition as well, but they weren’t chosen.
7. A classic
As I already have mentioned a couple of times, do I really like Goethe’s „Faust“ (see: Mephisto), but as it stands have I never finished Part Two of the tragedy. But this will be changed by the end of the challenge. 🙂 I might even reread Part One as well, if I can find it…
8. A book by your favorite author that you haven’t read yet
This one is tricky as I don’t really have an author I consider my favourite. There are three of whom I at least have more than one unread book: Stephen King, Terry Pratchett and Marcus Heitz. I am still not sure which book I will choose, but it is highly likely that I will finally finish – more likely begin anew – King’s „The Dark Tower V: The Wolves of the Calla“ as like „Kinder des Judas“ this one is still unfinished for quite some time now.
9. A nonfiction book
A couple of years ago we had a secret Santa at work and the present I picked was Stephen Hawking’s „A Brief History of Time“ and I think it’s about time I get around to reading it.
10. A book either published or a bestseller from the year you were born
This one is tricky as the most books I found in the list for my year aren’t that easily available for me – or simply didn’t sound interesting enough. The one I picked is Ray Bradbury’s „A Graveyard for Lunatics“ that is actually available in my local library. (And now you all know my year of birth and subsequently my age >_<)
Bonus book! 11. A book you haven’t read that was adapted to a movie/TV show
As I am already planning on continuing the series I’ll probably continue with the second part of „The Vampire Diaries“ – the review for the first one is still on my to-finish list though.
Now you know which books I have picked and I will give you a review after I finished them (though maybe not for 8. as that would seem odd without the other ones).
Maybe you want to try it too? Just pick a couple of books and make sure to actually read them. 😉
PoiSonPaiNter
Edit: You can find my current reading (and review) status here: Summer Book Challenge

Grimm

What else to do while waiting for Once Upon A Time to continue than to watch another Fairytale-related series?
Well, basically a lot of stuff, but I was still curious if OUAT really was a rip-off of that show as a bunch of people claimed.
And as you can see in the title: I am talking about NBC’s Grimm.
Grimm is a crime show about Nick Burkhardt, a homicide detective that has a certain ability. He is a Grimm. He can see the real nature of creatures called „Wesen“ that are able to pass as normal humans otherwise. The show shows how Nick is more and more able to cope with this and what obstacles he has to overcome along the way.
First of all, I’d like to say that I watched the series both in English and in German, so I’ll even be able to show you some of the differences between them.
The series has a small circle of main characters.
Alongside Nick we have his partner Hank Griffin, Captain Sean Renard and Sergeant Wu in the Portland Police Department and at home his girlfriend Juliet.
In his first case after discovering his ability he meets the Wesen Monroe, a „Blutbad“ that he accuses of having kidnapped a little girl. After their first differences he becomes Nicks friend and very own „Grimm-o-Pedia“. 😀
Later on a „Fuchsbau“ called Rosalee and a „Hexenbiest“ named Adalind Schade join the cast.
As I said Grimms are people with the ability to see the real nature of Wesen.
But what exactly Grimms are has not yet been told.
What we know so far is that they collect data on Wesen and are successors of seven families that  all have the same „gift“.
As some of the words mentioned above suggest, this series uses quite a bunch of German words.
This is due to the fact that among the most famous – and openly known – „Grimms“ where the Brother’s Grimm, Jacob and Wilhelm; the German Fairytale collectors.
Or so we think.
In the world of Grimm, just as in OUAT, these Fairy Tales are real.
They are the way of telling the people what they aren’t aware of.
They tell them the stories of the Wesen.
And of course warn the humans about them.
For example the „Blutbaden“ (official plural of Blutbad) are what later became the Big Bad Wolf in the brother’s Children and Houshold Tales. (Funny side note: There is a Wesen-version of these tales called: „Albträume für Wesen Kinder“ [original title; English: „Nightmares for Wesen children“])
Regardless of the fact that it is pretty cool to have different languages in a show (not all Grimms were English or German, some wrote their notes in Latin, Japanese or Spanish) I do occasionally struggle with the grammar they chose…
For example „Blutbad“ is the German term for „bloodbath“.
„Blutbaden“ however doesn’t really exist…
The „Blut“ would still be „blood“ but the „baden“…well it does suggest that it is the action of bathing in blood, making the translation „bathing“, but that does not really make sense.
So basically the plural of a blood bath is the action of bathing in it. Obvious isn’t it?
Or the „Rumplestiltskin“-dude from the episode „Nameless“ in Season 2.
He is a „Fuchsteufelwild“. That is no German word either.
Well, „fuchsteufelswild“ would be, but that would be an adjective meaning „mad as hell“ or „hopping mad“.
So they either took somewhat fitting German nouns or adjectives and stitched them together.
Let’s just say: If the actual brothers would have really given the creatures their German names, their works would have never been able to become a literary classic….
But „worse“ than the grammar – though more funny – is the pronunciation of the words.
I know it is not easy for an American native to pronounce German words, as our language is quite „harder“ (in means of sound) as English, but they could a least try a tiny bit more…
I mean, the most used term „Wesen“ is totally mispronounced.
No German-native would understand it. It took me a while to do so at least and I had to read it at some point before it made sense to me.
The way the cast pronounces it, the word means „whose“ not „creature“.
They add an extra „s“ to it and make it a (possessive) question, rather than a noun…
Anyway, I still think it is great that they even try.
If you watch the German version of the show one thing becomes clear: They do not like the grammar either.
They bluntly change the names to something that would – in their opinion – make more sense in German. E.g. Blutbaden became „Blutbader“ (Which would more or less translate to „Bloodbather“ – someone who is bathing in blood. Trying to find a translation for „bader“ I discovered that there was a medieval profession by that name, someone that had some kind of medic role for the poor people. Look for „Barber Surgeon“ for more information.) and the „Ziegevolk“ (proper German: Ziegenvolk) became the „Ziegendämon“ (Goat Demon“), while still portrayed as the original version in the Grimm Diaries (notebooks of the Grimms about the Wesen and mostly how they killed them) that Nick inherited from his aunt Marie at the beginning of the series.
Makes just as much sense.
A bit more sense makes translating some of the things said in German in the original into Mandarin.
Yes, Mandarin.
The „Woge“ – the transformation from humanoid to Wesen, gets a Madarin term.
The German saying „Alles hat eine Ende nur die Wurst hat zwei.“ that Monroe – whose quite adept at several languages and especially at German thanks to his ancestors – uses in the Episode „Big Feet“ was translated into that as Nick asks what it meant „because it sounded nice“ and that question wouldn’t make sense if it was said in German…
So apart from language mutilation what does this series have?
Well, it’s a crime show that shows you a new Wesen each episode, just as we are used to from old Buffy times, with a whiff of Supernatural.
The character development is in my opinion quite slow.
While we have an awesome character with a certain depth to him with Monroe (being a Wieder Blutbad he is the vegan among wolves) right from the start, Nicks progress drags on into the second season with baby steps.
In the first season the story mostly centers around the crimes committed by various Wesen, the greater scheme is only slowly revealed. It is kind of like the viewer learns new things in the same pace as Nick does. Which is a good thing, but drags the story on without really having to. But this changes with the second season, where the story turns its focus onto the Grimm instead of the criminal Wesen.
At first I nearly gave up on the series, but the more it advanced the more colours it gained.
You had Nicks struggle of not being able to tell anyone and all the other problems he was faced with. But you also had different approach at how to treat Wesen.
In the finale of Season 1 you see a second Grimm, that doesn’t believe in Nicks way of befriending them – the good ones at least – and that sticks to the old ways of simply killing them off. So you do not have this general black and white thinking here. Which is really nice.
So by now I am quite curious where Nick’s journey will lead him and his affiliates.
Also the characters become better – especially Monroe and Rosalee.
Though Monroe was one of my favourite characters from the get go. His humor’s just great. Unfortunately they aren’t really able to completely capture it in the German version.
Well, and as I said he speaks German and can at least translate it just by reading through it.
But I also already mentioned that you can’t see this that good in the German version (hence the Mandarin).
And to show what else is different have some trivia regarding the different versions and bits I consider funny.
Throughout the two season there are several scenes in bars, some of them even in German bars. The music that is played there is quite disturbing for a Metalhead like me, but one song in particular caught my attention.
In Episode 14 in Season 2 „Natural Born Wesen“ Monroe walks into a Wesen bar and what is played? „Bück dich“ by Rammstein. One of the most contrary bands in Germany. (A band I’ll be seeing live in a week from now at the Wacken Open Air 😉 ) Though in my opinion their song „Mutter“ would have been more fitting in regards to the episodes title.
Apart from their musical choices I like the way the creators treat finale cliffhangers, when after the last scene the message: „To be continued“ writes itself and after a moment „You knew this was coming.“ is added. 😀 They at least know how to make things funny for their audience.
And as we already are with writings: As interesting as the intro texts are, as awesome is it that the German voice actor Thomas Fritsch is reading them, while in English they are only shown and faded out again. He has just the right voice for a storyteller and he already has some experience with that. 😀

Another thing that is again typically German – beside strange translations: Censorship.
In the second Episode („Bears will be Bears“) Monroe keeps an eye on Nicks aunt.
In the original you can see how he rips of the arm of one of pursuers and later see the same guy in a sickbed with a red spot at shoulder height being wheeled past him when Monroe calls Nick in panic and claims that he might have overdone it.
In the German version they skip right from the fight to the bed-scene, so you can not really make the connection to the bloodstain.
I might have looked away at that moment, but I think I remember that there was another scene where he was holding the arm and looking at it in horror before he fled the scene that wasn’t shown either.
Additionally to that:
German television magazines often named Monroe „Eddie“, as they had picked up somewhere that that would be his first name. By now it is even on some other (English) sites, but officially it was never said whether „Monroe“ is the first or the last name and what the other is. (Eddie was a draft name if I remember correctly, though.)
Anyway, to conclude all this:
I think Grimm is a rather good series.
It is a bit slow when it comes to character development and has this monster-of-the-week flair from Buffy, but it still has potential to grow.
And it is interesting to see how it will continue, especially with the characters and how the writers will manage to continue to build in new Wesen and stories/fairytales – even though this faded quite strongly into the background by now.
It is always interesting to see how the supernatural cumulates at a place as soon as you have to do with it. 😀
In my opinion the rumor that OUAT is a ripp-off of Grimm is far-fetched. The sole thing they have in common, is that they integrate the Grimm’s Fairytales…but they portray it completely different. (OUAT does a better job at that I’d like to add. Besides I am kind of inclined to write a continuation for my post about them, not sure if I’ll actually do it.)
However, this concludes the post for July.
Last year I did not manage to write one for August so I at least managed to not do the same with this month…
And as I am off to another Journey around Germany I wont be able to write anything more until the middle of August.
So, stay tuned for my travel log and some festival reports in the following months. 🙂
PoiSonPaiNter