Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 1 / Matches the Clown vs. Kamen Champion

Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 1 / Matches the Clown vs. Kamen Champion

Speed Death Tournament 2020, Round 1 — Matches the Clown vs. Kamen Champion

584 points
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Crit level: Open to any comments or critiques

by Cab

552 points
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Crit level: No preference

Critiques & Comments
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# 11   Posted: Feb 14 2020, 01:51 AM
Ran: God, I loved the writing in this. It's things like this that really capture, in my opinion, the unique ways comics can be used to tell a story. This sort of constant flash between past narration and present action would be extremely difficult to pull off in just pure prose, and even doing this in, say, a movie with a voiceover, may have been less effective because you wouldn't get the clear delineation between past and present that really sells it. My only real crits are that you could maybe do with some spot blacks to push some more depth into the backgrounds, and you gotta remember to at least slap a white outline under your text when it's on top of inks, cuz a couple of times it got hard to read thanks to the words blending in with the inks.

Cab: man I gotta give you props for just how fuckin terrifying you made Matches look. Like. Yeesh. I wasn't a fan of clowns before this and oh boy this definitely didn't help, lol. I also really liked the bits of shading you did! I don't really have anything to add crit-wise that hasn't been said already, so I'll just say that I wish we could've seen more of Rey, he was a really compelling character. At least there's always Month of the Dead!

Community Manager
# 10   Posted: Feb 4 2020, 11:59 PM
Ran: I can only really reiterate what others said, but this was a great story, how they indirectly interact and how Matches doesn't even intend to kill. in terms of art these are basically inks if you just adjusted the value of them more. But great job and look forward to seeing more of your comics.

Cab: the amount of quality content you can produce in such a short time is great. You're also doing more experimentation with your line-work which is great. However the composition in your comic resulted in it being quite confusing There are two composition things you should work on. In this comic there aren't enough pulled back shots showing where all the characters are in relation to each other, you need to practice more compostions where all the characters are clearly ground in the same place.

However the other part that leads to a lot of confusions is that ontop of not enough shots grounding all the characters together you keep switching which side the characters are in relation to each other. On page two both Matches and Rey are looking to the left or directly at the camera. Then when they are on the same panel Rey is on the left side looking right and matches the opposite, then you switch  them on the next panel. Matches grabs with his left hand then throws with his right. These are small things that if one of them happened every now and then is fine. but when they keep popping up it leads to confusion. so when storyboarding out your panels to keep orientation in mind and try to keep characters to one side of the panels and only switch when you have clear establishing shots placing all the characters in space. A book I would recommend reading is "Framed Ink" by Marcos Mateu-Mestre which will also help give you some ideas for more variety in your shots as there is starting to be a repetition in them.

Also one thing that is worth mentioning is you always do some great writing and in particular always find great ways to introduce third party villains to your stories.

Web Dev
# 9   Posted: Feb 4 2020, 11:31 PM
Spoiler: ran • show
Aside from some grammatical issues/typos, this entry felt pretty solid. I like how you overlaid Kamen Champion's conversation about being granted powers on top of the actions he takes that lead to his downfall. The comic felt a little unfinished to me, largely because the text was a darker shade than all the lineart. I'd suggest either adjusting your image levels to make sure the darkest parts of your inks are black, or use a lighter shade for the text to match your lineart. As it stands, they look more like refined pencils than inks. The art looked pretty solid though! Writing-wise, I feel like my only nitpick would be that Matches didn't really get any screen time. I get that the implication is that he started the fire, so I won't say he didn't do enough, but I feel like we missed out on learning a bit more about him as a character. I think that's fine if it's just how you want to start out and you plan on revealing more over time, but I would be disappointed if we had another comic that was almost entirely about your opponent's character. Still, this was really well done, and I can't wait for what's next!

Spoiler: cab • show
As always, your art was solid, and I love how you integrated the old TV show with Kamen's current life. Having him ultimately lose in a sense is definitely an interesting deviation from standard superhero type stories, and it always feels more real when the hero can't save everybody. I'm not sure if everyone dying was the right move, but it was still an interesting one. My main issue with your comic is the dialogue. It felt like a lot of the time characters were saying things they wouldn't actually say just to clarify the situation. It did help connect events together clearly, but it took away from the drama of the event. That kid saying "hey I'm going to shoot you with that dead guy's gun," for example, made it feel like the kid wasn't really that affected by the guy dying ("that dead guy" sounds pretty dismissive), which then kept me from feeling the tension of a kid afraid of both dying and of shooting the gun. You had a really cool concept there, but I think you could have cut a decent amount of dialogue and kept enough comprehension without losing the realism that brings the drama. I'm very tired rn so I hope that made sense haha. All said, you've intrigued me with this character's story, and I look forward to more!

# 8   Posted: Feb 3 2020, 05:41 PM
Ranzombie: Oh wow, that was a poignant story that becomes even more tragic when you realize that his "opponent" was pretty much oblivious to him (fitting, considering a "hero" would need a supervillain and instead got an uncaring, unknown arsonist). I'm not sure how I feel about this potentially being a trend for this character if he moves forward, but it worked very well here. Also, your artwork is very clear and effective. The only thing that was perhaps a little hard to see may have been your choice of font.

Cab: Wow, that got... grim quickly. To be honest, I felt a bit of whiplash. The way you draw Matches is appropriately unsettling, but going back and forth between Matches and the other characters, especially the blobby kid, felt strange, like the tone of the story was changing (speaking of, "Jerry Noo!" was unintentionally funny, and I later realized a serious mood was setting in). This comic got intense, for which closeups are great, but you probably could have backed up the camera a little more. It's amazing how much ground you cover in a short amount of time, but I wonder if it could have been structured and paced a little differently.

# 7   Posted: Jan 31 2020, 04:34 AM
Ran- Wonderfully written, I usually struggle to get through tons of narration, but this flowed so nicely and was genuinely compelling to read. I also enjoyed the less conventional approach to a STD battle. It's kept an air of mystery and intimidation hanging around Matches. Great job.

Cab-  Fantastic job telling an action-packed story in such a short span of time, your introduction to all the characters felt smooth and it was just enough to get me invested in the violence. The art/presentation for a 1 weeker was impressive.
crits- wasn't keen on the kid's random exposition dumps, it kinda took me out of it at times. (example- his comment on pg 4)

# 6   Posted: Jan 30 2020, 12:18 AM
Ran; I loved this. Fantastic storytelling. The use of  a little narration with a otherwise mute comic all the way but for the end? :Chefskiss:. I would not say that it was over narrated. There are plenty of european comics that employ very similiair structure. I hope to see a lot more of your comics in the future.

Cab: Goddamn you are a beast! How you did all this in such a short time I do not know. There was some messyness and some pacing issues, mainly around the bit with the kid but otherwise beastly work and fantastic expressions.

# 5   Posted: Jan 29 2020, 10:31 PM
Ran - Really enjoyed this! Neatly written story, and despite being just black and white I never had any trouble making out the characters or seeing what was going on. I disagree with the too much narration comment and thought it fit very well with the images, and I loved the Matches’ reveal at the end.

Cab - Jesus Christ you know how to draw some terrifying faces. I was genuinely freaked out looking at Matches, especially that first panel on page 2, though every panel he was in I found myself cringing a bit. Kudos. I was confused at how the kid died as well though, and what happened to the gun he was holding? The action on page 5 was a little hard to follow as well.

Global Moderator
# 4   Posted: Jan 29 2020, 08:45 PM
I gave both battles super high marks because wow you guys. Way to come out into round one fists flying. Especially considering the deadline and amount of time needed for these battles, I'm astounded at not only each comics complete story, but the level of detail and finesse with getting everything done. Too often the time crunch makes the quality suffer, or we get an incomplete page, but its clear the both of you are a pair of juggernauts to be reckoned with. I honestly don't know who I want to win. I really enjoyed both!

# 3   Posted: Jan 28 2020, 05:12 PM
Ranzombie: You pretty much gave your opponent a heroic sendoff. I felt emotionally attached to Kamen Champion all the way through his demise.
I feel you relied too much on narration instead of actual interaction. So it feels mostly like a story with pictures in some places.
Other than that, I enjoyed this a lot. Good job!

Cab: Goshdang, you portrayed Matches as a ruthless assasin. Even disposed of the child. That will take a huge toll on Ray. :(
...Which. I am not sure how or what happened, since one pannel he's just reaching for him, and the next the kid just... Explodes? That is the only moment I was confused.
I enjoyed how you colored the parts of the show only, while the present story had no color; Gave it a more depressing atmosphere.
Cab, I love your inks. Moar plz

# 2   Posted: Jan 28 2020, 09:45 AM
Nice work ya'll, a week isn't much time, these pieces look snazzy!

Ranzombie! Portray your opponents demise without introducing your own, like some smooth criminal. Is the clown truly just a disgruntled fireman? We may never know.

Cab! The old mighty morphing feel is a favorite of mine but can this young pup really hold his own against all the bloodthirsty hooligans Void has to offer? Find out next time on Speed Death Tournament 2020!

Keep it up doodlers!

Fred v2.0.1
# 1   Posted: Jan 28 2020, 05:42 AM
Zombie: Strong storytelling! I had feels! If you were pressed for time, I would still encourage to try to make the text and borders match the art, wether finished or not. Because what you have looks good, but disjointed.

Cab: Be careful with pacing and and how you reveal things. The whole gun thing felt odd and I wasn't sure if the kid had died or what... it wasnt clear that bit. It is very nice how everything wraps together though, nice tight story.

Comic Details -

Type: Speed Death Tournament Match
Drawing Time: 1 week
Ended: Feb 4th, 2020
Votes Cast: 28
Page Views: 419
Winner: RanZombie

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