“The Fancy Adventures of Jack Cannon”
Hey guys! Today I am going to take a look at The Fancy Adventures of Jack Cannon by Jamie Anderson. Mr. Anderson lives in the matrix in Australia, which explains to all the American readers why when there are cars in the comic, the driver is on the wrong side. I think that’s right, anyway, isn’t it? I’m sure it is.
So basically, Jack is this homeschooled kid, and it’s his first real school experience. Things seem pretty backwards, as a little gang of nerds led by a lead “hacker”, Craig, are basically in control of the school. Then Jack comes along and beats them all up. Twice. (More than twice, but “twice” sounds more dramatic.) There is a bunch of action and high school drama type stuff, mostly with his friend (and possible romantic interest?) Angel and her friend Cin. We’ve also been introduced to a vaguely secretive type of intelligence organization, and it’s crazy operative Max Facepuncher, and also Jack’s parents; his father is a tough and gruff type figure, while his mother is a playful but violent source of much of Jack’s ability to beat people up. Only when he has to, of course!
As always, I’m going to start off the review by talking about the layout. It’s a WordPress/Comicpress thing, and I have some problems with that layout style in general, which will be a separate post sometime! The title image is nice, though it doesn’t take up half the space it COULD, horizontally… not like that’s a huge deal or anything though. The update schedule is in the title of the page, which is a crafty place to sneak it! Yeah, basically I like it. For a Comicpress layout.
I like Jamie’s comments underneath the comic! They are short and not ranty and enjoyable to read! This is a good thing. He is doin’ stuff right. With the trend of creators getting Twitter accounts for their characters, Max Facepuncher has one; also there are some forums that are moderately active, so the comic is getting some sense of community! That’s GOOD! That’s a really great thing to promote.
God, I hope this review doesn’t sound ridiculous, I’m still hung-over. That being said, let’s get to the COMIC!
The art in this comic is pretty wild. At first it was distracting, but eventually I got used to it and came to like it; aiding this was, of course, Jamie getting more used to drawing the characters and that sort of thing. The art starts off pretty good and gets slightly better, though there’s not a lot of development, which is fine. Taking a look around, though, and we see that he was at THIS level back in 2001, so he HAS come a long way!
The colors are also very vivid, vibrant, and… vdynamic. This isn’t a big deal for much of it, but sometimes, experimenting with color is more effective than just turning the saturation knob higher. If I would have one thing to suggest to Mr. Anderson, it would be to fiddle around with color themes or the like. It always struck me as clever, for instance, how Evan Dahm of Rice-Boy uses a layer of one or two colors to do shading and “unify the color of the whole page.” This is totally a nit-picky thing though, and the fact that it’s basically the best I’ve got for criticism is really kind of a compliment.
I also don’t like how the noses are drawn, as little arcs super close to the eyes, but I think that’s just a personal irritation. Noses are not like that! But little anatomical correctness isn’t exactly a big top of the list thing either.
The storylines were really strong at first. The build-up with the Craig thing was awesome, and that whole fight was good too; the school invasion was also really great. The Mega Intelligence stuff going on right now is rather slow, however, but hopefully between Jack and Max it’ll pick up again soon. The comic is pretty consistently witty and funny, and has a good sense of comedic timing as well; it also uses the Rule of Cool to good effect.
Jamie lists Dr. McNinja in his links and I’m pretty sure it shows; I get the same vibe of awesome action from a lot of it. This isn’t a bad thing, however, as if you read McNinja this won’t come off as any kind of copying; rather, it’s more like, “If you like Dr. McNinja, you will most likely enjoy this too.” His parents are easily a cross between the good doctor’s parents and Dominic Deegan‘s parents (at least when that comic was good), and it’s a pretty good dynamic. I think I’d like to know more about the father’s past in particular, but really, any strip with them in it is normally really funny.
The high school drama stuff is fun and different from a lot of stories in that Jack doesn’t have any secret identity. Finally! I love the secret identity stuff too but it’s nice to see some variety! I would probably like to see more students, and maybe a couple more teachers, become characters, just to flesh out the school a little more. Angel and Cin are both pretty solid though, and Angel is totally hot.
The Fancy Adventures of Jack Cannon is a super webcomic full of energy and punching people! I would definitely recommend it to my friends. The art could be a little tighter, but hey, besides that and Comicpress, that’s really all I can think of to say bad about it- especially since it’s easily arguable that the style of the art is partly responsible for the energy and quality of the comic. Anyway… I am eagerly awaiting the next mess of things that Jack will inevitably get thrown into, and hope it’s just as funny, even more dramatic, and… soon!