Dollhouse: The High Roller / Mayes Meindert

Dollhouse: The High Roller / Mayes Meindert

Dollhouse: The High Roller — Mayes Meindert

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Critiques & Comments
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Heavenbat
Artist
131 comments
# 12   Posted: Aug 2 2020, 07:09 PM
Hey man, seriously, congrats on getting this done. That's an astronomical amount of work right there!! You're really getting the hang of this webscroll format, and I think it works well for you. The format works especially well with the drug sequence, even if I'm not... personally a fan of that kind of sequence.
On the other hand, as has been pointed out, the transformation sequence SHOULD have, by all means, worked very well with the webscroll format, without being bound to the traditional frame. But instead, you used tiny boxes with a very harsh border--the panels were often so tiny and so focused in on individual parts that I had a hard time figuring out what was going on, especially without color to help guide me on what was what.
Though, once again, you pull it back into good usage of the webscroll with the Garland sequence; what an exceptional bit of character acting! And I know you said you were proud of his monologue, which you absolutely should be. It's a real choice monologue, with a reasonably sound argument behind it. V good.

Though I'm with everyone else, in that without the reveal at the end it felt kinda flat XD

STILL THO. Excellent job my dude!!

TheCydork
Artist
261 comments
# 11   Posted: Aug 1 2020, 11:11 PM
First of all, congrats on finishing this my dude. This is a lot of work and I applaud you for completing a whole character arc, cos boy have I run out of steam on those so many times. I enjoyed Garland’s characterisation as usual, he’s a great character and I just love how he thinks. I also enjoyed the over the top anime references with the unicorn girl, and also appreciated that she was just this buff, ripping out of the skin deal. Also really liked the environment outside the pancake house! It was unique and distinct.

However I felt like something was just missing here. All the story beats were set for a tense and (at the end) horrifying comic, plus Garland slowly walking towards the camera and monologuing was very well done and effective. But I just didn’t feel it, and I realised why when I reread all of Mayes’ story, including his archive. Mayes doesn’t really have a personality beyond “sad addict”. The only reason we have to care about him is his circumstances, but even then, you don’t show us any of the suffering that comes with addiction. He’s desperate enough to kill against his own morals, but he just kind of... meekly accepts. Where’s the turmoil? He’s so disgusted by killing that he throws up, but there’s no struggle to accept, or struggle to continue the killing, he just keeps apologising and saying he has to do this. In his bio he’s described as desperate, but I don’t feel desperation from him at all, just resignation and guilt-tinted apathy.

Personally, I think a scene where he initially refuses, but then succumbs as he begins to go into withdrawal, would have made the emotional impact stronger as well as killing two birds with one stone (showing the suffering of his addiction plus inner conflict). This would also emphasise and actually show how desperate he is - it’s more impactful for us to see this play out directly as opposed to narrated snapshots of desperate acts in his past, like on page 9.

I also agree with the other comments about stiff expressions, chopped up transformation and abrupt ending. I would really have liked to see Mayes’ doll form.

PS Something I just remembered is that nothing else is shown about Mayes beyond his current situation. Knowing things like why he’s an addict in the first place might have made me care about him more too.

Kozispoon
Global Moderator
1111 comments
# 10   Posted: Jul 31 2020, 11:12 PM
I think it was a neat idea to pervert the heroes journey (kidnappers journey?) In Mayes initially refusing the call to action from Garland in the diner. That it took a second chance encounter in the gallery for things to go so wrong and this dollhouse journey to begin. I especially dig the trippy sequences you add whenever Mayes is abusing. It makes for your more interesting visuals.

 I think my only complaint has to be your expressions. They felt so stilted and restrained character to character. I'd say emoting furry faces is probably difficult, but I've seen enough furry content on the site to know they can get super expressive. Mayes was in some high stakes action, fear, dread, resignation and it all felt pretty subdued because he just looked mildly disinterested throughout. Also those last couple panels of Garland creeping ever closer was such a great built up and had me pretty nervous to keep scrolling, but the payoff felt like it was missing. We didn't get to see anything of what he did to Mayes. Not even a hint of it in Mayes newfound doll hand coming up, or a horrified reflection in Garlands eyes. Anything, even alluded would've made for more of a punch, but as it stands it just felt like an abrupt end.

Rivana
Artist
165 comments
# 9   Posted: Jul 30 2020, 06:51 AM
Arts...ARTS! This was a very engaging story through and through. I really enjoyed it a lot. And the art is great too! Those last pages where Garland was getting closer was pretty powerful. I noticed a typo in one of the pages so if I am going to nitpick, maybe just do a once over of the speech bubbles before submitting. Also a part of me wished I saw Mayes' new look but I understand that is part of the cliffhanger.
 
But yeah, sorry this is short but this is really great and I am proud of you. Bravo.

Pizza Man
Artist
15 comments
# 8   Posted: Jul 29 2020, 04:51 PM
I wanna go back on one thing I said about too many shots being flat. Looking back that wasn't really an issue. It only bothered me in the conversation scenes and it's mostly due to a personal preference I have with two way conversations in comics. I don't believe it took anything away from this comic now that I've read it a second time.

Fluffsamasprime
Artist
36 comments
# 7   Posted: Jul 26 2020, 04:08 PM
Poor Mayes! I was enjoying reading the beginning on webtoons, glad to see it still going!

Heathen
Artist
373 comments
# 6   Posted: Jul 26 2020, 02:11 PM
I love how sinister Garland is. I think you said you achieved his acting in the final scene by recording yourself, and that really worked nicely. So much comes through in his body language, you really believe he thinks he's helping his victims.

I have to disagree with Pizza Man on the point of signalling Garland's ill intent beforehand. We know what he's about. If you see Garland being friendly in a restaurant and don't think he's just buttering up a potential "patient", you haven't been paying attention. There's a time and place for exposition and making things obvious, and I think this was a time for subtlety. We're experiencing this scene from Mayes' perspective, so Garland managing to deceive US is the strength of this comic.

I only have one problem with this comic, and it cost you a couple points. After that wonderfully slow burn final monologue ---- WE GOTTA SEE MAYES!


Pizza Man
Artist
15 comments
# 5   Posted: Jul 26 2020, 03:35 AM
I'm confused does he still have to kill 3 people? That plotline kinda got dropped abruptly. I feel like the ending would've stuck better if this happened after Mayes struggled to kill the other two implied targets. Having it end like this just kinda makes me feel like you got bored of the story you were telling and wanted to jump to the end which I find to have come at the expense of Mayes' character. I like the villain every time I see him in your comics. I can't wait to see where he appears next. Might've been cool to show Garland react to Mayes' choices with subtle disdain rather than seeming indifference. Even with the threat of being too on the nose it's not a bad thing to allow a little foreshadowing to the final moments in the comic.

You've really improved on your scrolling in comics. I'm not really a fan of the outline but it didn't bother me here too much save for one thing which I’ll elaborate on later. I liked the use of color except in the scenes in the diner. I'm not sure if it was your intention to have a scene that brought Mayes back into a more normal state of mind to be filled with a more solid color scheme but I feel like it could've been potentially better to have the environment be colored a warm but uncomfortable color maybe like sunset colors (I'm bad at describing but basically the feeling of falling asleep at noon and waking up at 5 PM god I hate doing that but that's the mood I'm thinking of when Mayes snaps back into reality). The transformation sequence in the middle was fine but I was confused as to why you kept it in boxes when you had shown previously you're very good at making a fluid sequence without borders at the very beginning of the comic. I think it would've been better to see her slowly transform rather than separate parts that made it a little harder to understand that she was basically ripping out of her skin which is what I think was happening?

Backgrounds are fine for the most part. Things feel empty but I think it works in this comic, showing that while Mayes isn't in the prison he was in before there's still nobody else around to help him. I like how we never see the sky or a real outside. It reminds us and Mayes that he isn't truly free yet. I would've liked to see more angles, this is a problem that plagues a lot of scrolling comics in order to prevent the scrolling form of reading from breaking artists feel the need to keep the shots at a flat angle at almost all times. You did brake out of this just a bit during the fight scene and again at the end kinda by showing a shot looking up but these brief moments almost feel jarring at times when they break the rigid flat angle structure.

After unloading all that I have to say that I'm really looking forward to what you make next sorry if this crit rambled I wrote this after I feel asleep at 5PM and woke up at 2AM so I'm in that kinda mood.

Symon_says
Artist
167 comments
# 4   Posted: Jul 25 2020, 10:37 AM
This is coming together nicely, Artsandgoodies. It is really interesting to see Garland in the prime of his corpsecrafting profession. There were a couple of typos but they didn't really detract from the overall story. Good work. Keep it up!

PutridVodka
Artist
20 comments
# 3   Posted: Jul 24 2020, 04:50 PM
Aaah I feel so bad for Mayes. I really liked the pacing, and some of the more abstract scenes were very beautiful
Looking forward to see what changes Mayes went through!

Elyan
Artist
107 comments
# 2   Posted: Jul 24 2020, 12:09 PM
so arts.... the story telling is my favourite part here. in the end it was a very entertaining read with a good conclusion and wrap up for the beginningly very confusing scenes.
my only complaint, which isn´t really one, would be the effect art. You made a pretty strong decision to work these psychadelic and serene art effects. Speaking of his dreams/hallucinations and that pillar of magic stuff? You used alot of those pattern brushes many programs come with but tbh that was a pretty blunt approach that didnt fit in too well. I am impressed you made a big effort to pull off these images in your comic but if you plan on going into more stuff with such a theme I´d like to see more original interpretation/experimentation. All in all its still a very very brave move to do it!

Well I am curious how this ark and your art will develop.

ArtsandGoodies
Community Manager
432 comments
# 1   Posted: Jul 23 2020, 10:39 PM
I posted the first part already here: https://entervoid.com/view/6963/1/1 but here's the rest of the short story I originally did for webtoons. The page breaks may come at odd places in some of these since those weren't a factor for webtoons as they were meant to be longer scrolls there but i wouldn't be able to fit that file size on the void uploader so each episode is split up into 4/3 parts.

Comic Details -

 
Drawing Time: 1 week
Ended: Jul 31st, 2020
Votes Cast: 12
Page Views: 210
 

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