Love Child Tag Team Death Tournament, Round 2 / Johanna vs. Misery

Love Child Tag Team Death Tournament, Round 2 / Johanna vs. Misery

Love Child Tag Team Death Tournament, Round 2 — Johanna vs. Misery

1264 points
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by Shen and Stormcrow

1358 points
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Critiques & Comments
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Global Moderator
# 16   Posted: Apr 7 2018, 02:17 AM
Bang and waves,  thank you so much for such an amazing battle! Crow and I loved Johanna so much! You made such a good comic, we loved it! Long live johanna/misery! And Bang, we've fought 3 times now, ill see you in round 4! Thank you so much!

# 15   Posted: Apr 6 2018, 08:34 PM
Bangrywaves: This one opens and ends on some great notes, but the middle seems to be... a guy flailing around while bad things happen to him. The ending feels like it should have topped off a different story than just someone walking into a trap with his name on it. I love the use of spot colors, and ripping off his wings really packed a punch. Although, I'm wondering if the spot colors for his glowy parts were even necessary since his powers aren't really that much of the narrative. Johanna's powers probably could have used some some spot colors to really sell her getting the upper hand.

ShenCrow: Nice cold open. These two are kind of hilarious together, although they are hilariously coded with dated references. It works, but I'm wondering what this kind of self important darkness looks and sounds like nowadays. I did get a little confused in the second act. Before I realized it was her precognition, I thought Johanna's change was just her realizing Misery was a tool and getting really bored. The turnabouts were like one dramatic climax after another, and then... I don't know, I kind of feel like it could have ended with a different note, even if it was still a joke. Misery's tone flipflops and it's part of the charm of his character, but at the same time, sometimes it lands flat.

Approval Committee
# 14   Posted: Apr 6 2018, 08:24 PM
Team ScaryBang: I really like the limited colors in the comic, it's such an enjoyable style to see when it's done and I like how it's done here. Though it was confusing why Misery had two different types of speech bubbles, at first I thought they may have been Johanna thoughts or another character. Also a lot of the excess dialogue was the thoughts and most of that didn't really need to be said and some of it felt more like exposition than dialogue, especially since there is some good dialogue in here that does characterize Misery well. For example "Just gotta get airborne", anyone can say that and out of context it doesn't seem like something distinct to Misery. This could have been combined with "Alright bye" dialogue from the panel before to make something more fitting to the character like "Bye bitch!" would have sounded way more in character and told us all we need to know. There are other examples of this in the comic where a couple word bubbles could have been combined to sound less like exposition and more like Misery being an psychopathic angsty teen.

Team ShenCrow: I like Misery's character of being an angst teen and I think on the whole most all the jokes about it worked. Though I feel like with the song choice it was like the one song that was such a meme and joke that I doubt he would actually listen to that one song, like any other evanescence song or Lincoln park song would have worked but for me that one was a little too memey for it to work like something and ansgty teen would listen to. The only other thing that is slightly odd is that he is surprised she attacks him when he says "we need more blood". Ofcourse she's going to act in self defense when they're on a random cliff with her being the only other source of blood besides him. There is also the fact she has had those visions so we as the reader know that she is going to fight because of that but Misery doesn't so he could have said something else after the first attack like "Not your blood!" in order to try (and fail) to stop her from attacking. Both of these are small things that can be easily fixed and don't stop this comic from being overall amazing.

# 13   Posted: Apr 5 2018, 09:33 PM
I think this battle pretty much sums up WHY we can't have nice things. You give us a ship, you kill the ship.

"Hi. I'm Misery"
I really enjoyed the use of grays and only coloring specific elements. I feel that if there had been more colors, the impact of the blood and fighting scenes would not have been the same. Good work!

I think I am the most upset with you two, you gave us a lot of interaction between Johanna and Misery.
I really liked the buildup towards Johanna's demise though. I was tricked into thinking she was never going to be killed by Misery after all, but by her own fear of her visions.

Community Manager
# 12   Posted: Apr 4 2018, 08:03 PM
Team Scarybang: you guys have a good style together and some of the additional background settings is appreciated but there's moments of jarring quality loss like page 7 that were a quality and entertainment dip for me, unable to easily understand what's happening. There's a bit too much monologuing from the one talking character too, and little of it is necessary information that we can't otherwise decipher from the visuals

Team ShenCrow: continuing to read these issues of yours just makes me sadder we couldn't survive long enough to fight you ourselves T-T This is an interesting and dark look into a protagonist who is a villain through and through, you did a good job with the messed up relationship between these two characters. The tone shifts didn't mess with me as much  as they did last time, so good job with that, I think you're heading in the right direction with the comedy/darkness balance

Approval Committee
# 11   Posted: Apr 4 2018, 12:19 PM
It's funny how the better the comic is, the harder it is to comment on it. HERE GOES

TEAM SCARYBANG- I'll have to echo the sentiment on Misery's dialogue. I felt like I fell into an anime with the lead spelling everything out for the viewer with copious exposition. You have a mute character which I think lends itself to really punching up your art and saying more with visuals than dialogue. Johanna is intimidating as it is and she doesnt say a word. Nothing wrong with a silent comic all around.
Between the two, I think you had a stronger ending. Or rather it felt in character. Johanna is such a question- a litany of questions she either cant or refuses to answer. I like that her senseless violence doesnt even warrant a 'well heres why'.
There were some dips in quality ,but the panels and actions scenes you loved or that really drove the action home were noticed for sure. I especially dug the sequence where she friggin rips herself open. GURL U SCARY

TEAM SHENSTORM- Gorgeous gorgeous work. Seriously, profesh caliber. Your pages are solid, your inks crisp and most everything is clear and a visual treat. I feel since round one you've had this tug of war with your own character. Wondering if he should be serious or comedic. You're teetering on trying to juggle both- and while it is doable, your maneuvering of it still feels clunky. The comedic moments in this round I feel sap away the impact of those serious moments, and vice versa. There's an underlying conflict to Misery that goes beyond his need to see his Mother and I think its him trying to figure out what he is. Or who you two are as his creators.I dunno.

Community Manager
# 10   Posted: Apr 2 2018, 05:30 PM
Scarybang, I rather enjoy Johanna's design.  There are two things I didn't like about the comic though.  The reliance on effects for texture.  Could have been a bit more refined.  And Misery's constant dialogue is the weakest part here.  It comes off as rather clunky and far too expository.  It doesn't sound or read as natural speech.  So that's something to work on.

Shencrow: Your styles blend wonderfully together.  I feel as if you guys somehow make up for your usual anatomy slips together.  The colors are nice and the story is quite fun.  The only art bit I didn't like was the montage page.  The lettering needed some pop to stand out.  The writing for the characters matches and fits them very well.   I feel the tone was perfect and the blend of humor worked well in a Taika Waititi kind of way and only better served to illustrate the characters' personalities.  I want this ride to never end.

Think Tank
# 9   Posted: Mar 30 2018, 08:35 PM
Well both of these sure ended up in a whirlwind teenage romance where someone dies terribly--just what we like here on VOID!

SCARYBANG:  I swear, I would be dialed in to any more horror stories you got percolating in your heads.  This was uncomfortable in the way it was definitely intended and ho dang did it hit.  Both of these edgy kids fought with their guns a-loaded, and Johanna is pretty clever to just let herself bleed out to take down the Angel of Misery.  That's some smart tactics right there.  And your black and whites were very strong.  Only thing I would disagree with is that title page--the green on the font is real loud.

SHENCROW:  Your comic is very pretty, and I do like that Misery and Johanna hit it off as the "crawling in my skin" kids that they are,
but Misery is either a straight example of edge or he's a parody.
Y'all gotta pick one of these things.
"Wake Me Up Inside" is such an on-the-nose meme-status choice of song to reference, I swear Charkley had a hand in that part of the script.  Next opportunity for this could call or either a more sincere pick of edgy romance or something that creates a complete tonal dissonance to contrast these murderkids' hooking up.  More sincere pick would be like Ludo's "Love Me Dead"--still a well-known song but not ascended to meme status.  Want a contrast?  Maybe something like Herman's Hermits' "I'm Into Something Good"  Something that's happy and poppy to counteract their personalities.

Web Dev
# 8   Posted: Mar 30 2018, 03:24 PM
Spoiler: "ScaryRang" • show
Man, this comic was fucked up! I think the fact that your opponent was about as batshit insane as Johanna made it less emotionally powerful than your comic with Ari, but it made for some great violence! I also miss the B plot you had last round with Johanna's family, but I guess it would have gotten a bit stale if you kept using that same narrative strategy.

I'm still trying to wrap my head around this comic. Johanna's lack of dialogue contributes to her mysteriousness, but I think it also makes it less clear what's driving her. If you did that on purpose to lead me on, then well done haha. Otherwise, I hope you give us a bit more of a glimpse into Johanna's mind in the future.

Speaking of dialogue, I think you could have actually toned down Misery's dialogue a bit. It did help clarify some of the sketchier parts of your art, like page 7, but I think it was still clear enough what was going on that you could have dropped some of Misery's dialogue altogether and had a stronger narrative. I do love how much of an edgelord Misery sounded like, especially with the cliché "you want a fight? I'll give you a fight!" That may or may not have been intentional, but I don't think it was a bad idea either way. I do think it would have been a bit more fun to see Misery get the upper hand at some point, instead of just repeatedly being surprised by Johanna's increasingly powerful attacks. Having even a moment where they were evenly matched and both sides were just an explosion of gore and violence would have been spectacular. I kind of wish we could have seen more visceral gore, like pieces of Misery's face being torn off, or an arm broken somewhere. Ripping the wings off satisfied that itch, mostly, but I think with Johanna, the more graphic the violence, the more powerful the feeling of her being kind of just the embodiment of violence would be. Of course, I don't know the true driving force behind Johanna, so maybe those ideas aren't right for her, but it's what I think would work from what I do see of her.

Art-wise, you two continue to kill it with how kinetic everything is. You don't necessarily have a super strong consistency between panels, but you exaggerate those inconsistencies in proportion and perspective in such a spectacular way. It's really hard to tell you what to improve because I'm afraid that any attempts at perfecting form or creating more realism would backfire and take away from the emotional power of your combined art styles and writing. I think the only thing I can definitely give you advice on is to avoid the "stack-o-boxes" city skyline that you threw at the top of page 6 haha. I did get a little lost in some of the action on pages 5–7; maybe having some small panels showing intermediate steps between different attacks' moments of impact would help. But I dunno, I don't know how to draw action at all haha.

You guys, I'm so blown away by you in this tournament. I really want to know more about this character and what the FUCK is happening to/with her. More, please!

Spoiler: "AnimeCrow StormShen" • show
Ahahah I love how Misery is immediately in love with Johanna in both of your comics. I think that makes it canon, right? Also, it took me a second to realize what the words on page 3 were from, and I died as soon as I figured it out. I don't think I've seen a more perfect comic page in all my life omfg. From then, you just get more and more ridiculous until suddenly, this tonal shift that is as violent as the fight it contains. I actually forgot about Holden's—and, by extension, Johanna's—future visions, so I was confused at first, but as you repeated her vision of how she dies, I figured it out, so you did a good job of making sure your reader AKA me wouldn't get confused haha. Page 13 was amazingly paced, just absolutely nailing the sense of inevitability Johanna was experiencing in that moment, right before turning everything on its head on page 14. From there, the ending couldn't have been more perfect. It reinforces the fact that, ultimately, Misery cares about no one and is ready to throw away anyone's life in an instant. And he will never forgive anyone who crosses him, no matter how close they are to him.

You did exactly what I wanted to see with your fight, by the way: you destroyed Misery before giving him the upper hand again, instead of him just being untouchable. And, at the end, you still gave him the final word, the killing blow. I don't know how you blend absurd comedy and intense, serious drama so perfectly, but you have done it here, and that balance between the two only makes each part that much stronger.

This is professional-level work. Misery is such an engaging character, in a kind of insane way that shouldn't work but somehow you make it work. I love him and I want to fight him one day.

Think Tank
# 7   Posted: Mar 30 2018, 08:47 AM

Oddly enough I have the same advice for both of you: watch the contrast of your text to the stuff behind it. Scarybang, with misery's thoughts, sometimes the red didnt stick out enough, shencrow, your lyrics page was a hard read for me textwise as well.

Scarybang, y'all had AMAZING tone throughout this, like, I knew where it was going and yet... heck yeah it was satisfying to get there. I love the way your styles go together, its textural in ways I can't articulate but am always drawn to,  and the style reads well and suits this maddened mood y'all are maintaining so well. I honestly love it! Keep up the good work!
Shencrow, good work again, though i'm going to echo GPS on the writing/tone. I had read the other comic first so mood-wise, your comic fell flatter, even if the dialogue was a bit more clean. Your art is solid and y'all know that, a good round overall! Congrats!

# 6   Posted: Mar 30 2018, 08:11 AM
First off, good work y’all. I think these are both pretty good showings, and visually both groups did very well.

Bang and Scary: I’m a strong sucker for a black and white comic with small highlights in color. Y’all did very well on that. Tho I dont think the color of the hair in the first page of the comic really fits with everything else. Compared to the rest of the comic, it just doesn’t visually match by being so low detail and basically a color swatch. Overall, you both kept up a very tight visual look and thats really good, but because of how tight and clean it is, it did make it fairly notable whenever it stopped being so tight and clean. While the contrast can be used to emphasize moments, i don’t feel like that was accomplished here. During the fight itself, theres moments where the linework gets so rough its not just bleeding out of the panel, its overlapping onto other panels with stray lines. Now, from a writing standpoint, I’ve got to say yall have too much dialogue. And only one person can even talk! As it is, i think theres literally 5 panels in the entire comic without a line of dialogue. Nothing ruins a moment of ominous fear like constant chatter. Instead, play up the silence! When you want the character to be scary, its the silence that meets the pleading cries that does the most with that type of character. Have breaks in the dialogue to emphasize those moments of silence, the lack of a back and forth dialogue. Instead, it feels like you have Misery talk three times as much to try to make up for it.
But overall, this is a very good job! Just in summary, you've got some bits that feels rushed, and cut back on the dialogue just a bit. Let your art do the talking!

Shen and Storm: Visually, you too sync up very well. You’re able to play into each other’s strengths, and it works really nicely here. However, tonally, I can’t tell where this comic is supposed to be? It goes dark, brooding, funny, brooding, funny, tragic, funny line. It makes it really difficult to invest in the sort of narative you’re trying to build. I get that Misery is 2edgy5me and that is part of the joke, but i feel like the joke is being pushed to the point it detracts from the moments you want to be impactful. I think the shifting back and forth with the prophetical vision was a good trick, and also was a nice way to break up the comparative earthy tones of the comic while pushing the supernatural element.
Great work visually, but try to tighten up the tone a bit. Having jokes about your own story is fun, but just don’t let them take precedence over what you’re trying to do.

# 5   Posted: Mar 15 2018, 09:22 PM
CRAAAAWLING IN MY SKIN- due to my mad anticipation for this battle.

Global Moderator
# 4   Posted: Mar 15 2018, 03:56 PM

# 3   Posted: Mar 15 2018, 11:02 AM
Nothing good is gonna happen here.

# 2   Posted: Mar 15 2018, 09:03 AM
I foresee a gore party. I shall bring the party hats

# 1   Posted: Mar 15 2018, 07:47 AM

Comic Details -

Type: Death Match
Drawing Time: 2 weeks
Ended: Apr 6th, 2018
Votes Cast: 30
Page Views: 1089
Winner: Shen and Stormcrow

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