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Penny Arcade - Comic - Grace, Part Six

13

Posts

  • MorninglordMorninglord I'm tired of being Batman, so today I'll be Owl.Registered User regular
    Beautiful run. I understand what you mean with action scenes Mike, I had a little difficulty working out what was going on in the panels where she's swinging, but I understood the last part perfectly.
    I actually thought she was beating on it three different ways and then ran it through, so perhaps my initial confusion was slightly more badass in the end. :P

    (PSN: Morninglord) (Steam: Morninglord) (WiiU: Morninglord22) I like to record and toss up a lot of random gaming videos here.
  • SalurielSaluriel Registered User regular
    I'm sorry, but this...this just didn't work. I think I hit the nail on the head with my last post, where I said you two were too deep into the story. The ultimate adage in any visual medium is "Show, don't tell," and unfortunately it required you to tell - in the comments section - in order for this to make sense. There's no context as to how the family dresses on a regular basis, so there's no way for the reader to infer that they've just attended a funeral. Likewise, there's no indication that the "dad's working" scene comes after the monster fight, that the monster fight was before the funeral, that it was Grace's first fight, or that she was just then discovering the trophy was her totem.

    All of that information, as well as the explanation w/r/t the "spiders," makes the story much more coherent and I'll admit I enjoy it much more with that context. But the story fails because that context needs to be added and isn't apparent in the comic itself. A reader shouldn't have to trawl through comments sections, journal entries and news posts for the context to a story: it needs to be presented altogether.

    Like I said, now that the readers have been given this context, I like the characters and story more, but it still doesn't work because it wasn't presented with that context. To paraphrase the Joker, "If you have to explain the story, there IS no story!"

    AkamargeekditalianranmaSkeleVader
  • OrphaneOrphane rivers of red that run to seaRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    I think claiming to speak for "the readers" is silly when you can see in the comments section there were a fair amount of people who didn't have a problem with figuring out what hpapened.

    Some people got it (regardless of whether or not they picked up on every single detail), some people didn't.

    Orphane on
    foodleorthancstonecalamityjamieJacques L'Homme
  • GDT1985GDT1985 Registered User regular
    Saluriel wrote: »
    I'm sorry, but this...this just didn't work. I think I hit the nail on the head with my last post, where I said you two were too deep into the story. The ultimate adage in any visual medium is "Show, don't tell," and unfortunately it required you to tell - in the comments section - in order for this to make sense. There's no context as to how the family dresses on a regular basis, so there's no way for the reader to infer that they've just attended a funeral. Likewise, there's no indication that the "dad's working" scene comes after the monster fight, that the monster fight was before the funeral, that it was Grace's first fight, or that she was just then discovering the trophy was her totem.

    All of that information, as well as the explanation w/r/t the "spiders," makes the story much more coherent and I'll admit I enjoy it much more with that context. But the story fails because that context needs to be added and isn't apparent in the comic itself. A reader shouldn't have to trawl through comments sections, journal entries and news posts for the context to a story: it needs to be presented altogether.

    Like I said, now that the readers have been given this context, I like the characters and story more, but it still doesn't work because it wasn't presented with that context. To paraphrase the Joker, "If you have to explain the story, there IS no story!"

    Mike's explanation didn't tell me anything I didn't already figure out for myself. I truly don't understand why this was so hard to follow for so many people.

    foodleCabezoneCommander ZoomYoungFreyOrphanePsykomaceresRhesus PositiveDark Raven XKoopahTroopahTheCanManfightinfilipinoRoyceSraphimJacques L'HommeZibblsnrt
  • foodlefoodle Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Saluriel wrote: »
    I think I hit the nail on the head with my last post

    It's nice that you have such a high opinion of yourself ...
    The ultimate adage in any visual medium is "Show, don't tell," and unfortunately it required you to tell - in the comments section - in order for this to make sense.

    Speak for yourself. Story made sense fine without any additional explanation. Time shifts were fairly obvious by looking at Grace and some of the smaller clues.

    Not sure why this particular comic/thread has brought out all the negative Nellies or talk about who's operating on what "level" of artistic quality. And obviously, a personal and professional partnership that has grown a daydream/hobby into an massive international business/convention/charity/movement should be dissolved immediately. Ridiculous.

    foodle on
  • Spyro_ConspiratorSpyro_Conspirator Registered User new member
    This last strip is definitely my favorite of the series, mainly because it isn't so abstruse as the rest of it.

    I can understand why Jerry likes to keep things vague, since leaving major chunks of the story up to the imagination CAN make the world feel more expansive and give the storytelling elegance. And honestly I think most of the stories they do ARE coherent, even if you have to dig. The problem is, the implications never really expand the world--they just describe the bare bones of the story. You have to take yourself out of the story just to "get" it, so rather than feeling like you're getting a glimpse of a larger world its artificiality is just made all the more apparent.

    It's more obvious here because I think less time was spent on the actual dialogue than the broader ideas, when the dialogue is probably Jerry's strong suit. The first strip for example was just wayyyy too schmaltzy, even accepting that it's supposed to be super schmaltzy. Rather than getting the impression that "wow, this family really loves each other," you feel "wow, they really want us to know that this family really loves each other."

    Of course, this format has difficulties that impact pretty much every series in this vein. The way they collaborate probably makes it difficult for Jerry to predict exactly what will be evident in the art and what needs to be evident in the writing. The three panel thing is designed for punch-humor, and so when you go into it with that expectation (and you can't avoid it because that's what Penny Arcade proper is, and that's where this is posted) the writing seems awkward in ways it otherwise wouldn't be. Going back to the first strip, "Please, please. There's enough Grace for everybody" feels like it's supposed to be a "punch," even though it's really not, and so my immediate semi-subconscious reaction was "that was a really shitty punch"--and it made the Grace/grace thing feel way too pronounced, because the structure gives that line so much emphasis.

    GaslightfortyRoyceSraphim
  • CabezoneCabezone Registered User regular
    I had no trouble following what was happening and there is a clear difference in age between panels 1,3 and the rest. I dunno what all the hubbub is on about it being confusing.

  • TeamPineappleTeamPineapple Lurker Extraordinaire Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    This was so beautiful. I loved the whole concept of Nightlight and this mini arc was just gorgeous. Grace is an amazing character, and thank you so much for making such a strong, young female lead like this that goes and kicks monster butt even when daddy can't. My mom is a breast cancer survivor, so this hit home on an even closer note. This whole story line was just so deeply rich, mature and something I think you should be incredibly proud of. And the art was fucking amazing. Kudos to both Mike and Jerry on this. You should both honestly be proud.

    I just wanted to edit this to add that I really appreciate panel two - the perspective is amazing. The monster looking down on Grace and the shadow of his literal maw looming over her as she musters her courage.

    And then panel three when you see the spark in her eye when she finds it (her courage).

    Four - the beauty of her executing what she was born to do.

    Five - her crying as she says goodbye to her mom as she assumes the new role as protector, recognizing what mom did and why mom held on so long. It's really crushing.

    Six - Grace is a phoenix. (Edit again - notice her speech bubble color changes from blue to gold.)

    TeamPineapple on
  • ViciousBViciousB Registered User new member
    Loved the one-shot - I shared it with a bunch of dads who totally dug it - and I dug the Grace arc, though there were definitely parts I need the explanation for (thanks!).

  • Mr_GrinchMr_Grinch Registered User regular
    Gabriel wrote: »
    Just gonna say that when Jerry writes these comics he purposefully leaves room for me to tell the story with the art. He once saw a script for a comic book in which the writer described the action in each panel and it made him sick. That's not a collaboration. The script for nightlight has nothing but page numbers and even those are loose. He tells what he can/wants to and trusts me to tell the rest. If I don't do that it's not his fault it's mine.

    If you happen to read this, I'm curious, what was the reasoning for jumping around in time between the first, second and third comic versus telling it straight?

    Steam: Sir_Grinch
    PSN: SirGrinchX
    Oculus Rift: Sir_Grinch
  • TheFishTheFish Registered User regular
    Well done guys you managed to write a story even more impenetrable that the last Eyrewood thing with the birds.

  • metroidkillahmetroidkillah Local Bunman Free Country, USARegistered User regular
    Saluriel wrote: »
    I'm sorry, but this...this just didn't work. I think I hit the nail on the head with my last post, where I said you two were too deep into the story. The ultimate adage in any visual medium is "Show, don't tell," and unfortunately it required you to tell - in the comments section - in order for this to make sense. There's no context as to how the family dresses on a regular basis, so there's no way for the reader to infer that they've just attended a funeral. Likewise, there's no indication that the "dad's working" scene comes after the monster fight, that the monster fight was before the funeral, that it was Grace's first fight, or that she was just then discovering the trophy was her totem.

    All of that information, as well as the explanation w/r/t the "spiders," makes the story much more coherent and I'll admit I enjoy it much more with that context. But the story fails because that context needs to be added and isn't apparent in the comic itself. A reader shouldn't have to trawl through comments sections, journal entries and news posts for the context to a story: it needs to be presented altogether.

    Like I said, now that the readers have been given this context, I like the characters and story more, but it still doesn't work because it wasn't presented with that context. To paraphrase the Joker, "If you have to explain the story, there IS no story!"

    I really, genuinely can't tell whether or not you're trolling. You're giving some praise and reasoned explanation of your thoughts at the end, but your first paragraph- the foundation for your entire argument- is completely false. Like, there is not a single word of truth in it. Not one.

    So you tell me.

    I'm not a nice guy, I just play one in real life.
  • Kairos615Kairos615 Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    I really liked this series. The initial idea is so, so amazing, and I'd love to see what people come up with based on it.

    I feel that part of the difficulty in understanding these series comes from forgetfulness. The way these strips are released, by the time the last one comes out, a lot of people (me included) will have forgotten what happened in the first one. Once this last one came out, though, I went back and read them all, and it was far more coherent.

    There's also the fact that we're all different from each other. Some people don't want to make up their own stories. They just want to enjoy the stories other people create. Most stories are told in a way that appeals to those people. This story is not. So be it.

    Kairos615 on
  • Goose!Goose! That's me, honey Show me the way home, honeyRegistered User regular
    Mike post was a big help, but also having the complete 6 pages helps quite a bit. I know as I was reading them I was getting a little confused, especially following the original/inspiration comic.

  • CloudshapeCloudshape Registered User new member
    I absolutely adored this series. I especially liked comic 3, with Grace visiting her mom in the hospital. "You're waitng for me to say it! So you can go! That's the only reason I'm in here. So you can check me off your list!" There is so much in these lines. We can see Grace in the full throes of the bargaining side of grief. In her mind, she can choose not to say the words, and her mother won't be able to go. There is also the hint of what comes later, where her family draws their power from.

    ceresOrphaneRoyceSraphimJacques L'Homme
  • darleysamdarleysam On my way to UKRegistered User regular
    Really enjoyed this series, and would happily read more if you choose to come back to it. Managed to follow what was happening, then the discussions pulled out extra details that I hadn't noticed myself. All in all, great job.

    forumsig.png
    ceresJacques L'Homme
  • Rhesus PositiveRhesus Positive GNU Terry Pratchett Registered User regular
    With the multi-page stories, I like to restart reading them every time a new one comes out.

    ...

    Thus generating more page views...

    Aha, their nefarious plot is revealed!

    *Goes back to reading entire archive for a fourth time*

    [Muffled sounds of gorilla violence]
    Jacques L'Homme
  • Dark JaguarDark Jaguar Registered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Thank you for explaining what I'm seeing in that comic. All I saw myself were flashes of light and color, and I just couldn't figure out what I was looking at no matter which way I tilted my head, in the way a dog tilts its head when confused.

    Indeed, I actually had no clue what was even going on in this story. In previous comic series, it was clear that I was looking at, say, "robot detectives" or "future cowboys" or "actual real boyscout snipe hunts". I just couldn't find a corner on this particular candy wrapper to start pulling it open, it just so confused me. Saying it was "nightlight" did little to illuminate (is that irony?), because I had no idea what THAT was either. All I saw was comic 1, wherein a dad and a mom were fighting over some little gir's attention.

    Dark Jaguar on
    geekd
  • TheCanManTheCanMan GT: Gasman122009 JerseyRegistered User regular
    Thank you for explaining what I'm seeing in that comic. All I saw myself were flashes of light and color, and I just couldn't figure out what I was looking at no matter which way I tilted my head, in the way a dog tilts its head when confused.

    Indeed, I actually had no clue what was even going on in this story. In previous comic series, it was clear that I was looking at, say, "robot detectives" or "future cowboys" or "actual real boyscout snipe hunts". I just couldn't find a corner on this particular candy wrapper to start pulling it open, it just so confused me. Saying it was "nightlight" did little to illuminate (is that irony?), because I had no idea what THAT was either. All I saw was comic 1, wherein a dad and a mom were fighting over some little gir's attention.

    @Dark Jaguar Here's the link to the original "Nighlight" comic that inspired Grace's story.

    http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2015/06/24

  • CalicaCalica Registered User regular
    I somehow missed part 5 the first time around, so I was confused by part 6: when Grace says "I can help you," I thought she was implying that the monster was a tortured soul that she could literally help, and the strip didn't make sense in that context. After I went back and read part 5, with Grace sassing the monster, it suddenly clicked that she's "helping" the monster by translating the French phrase, and the rest of the page is an epic takedown and not some sort of benign exorcism.

    Just goes to show how seemingly inconsequential things can be so essential to understanding the story. I love this stuff!

  • Dark JaguarDark Jaguar Registered User regular
    TheCanMan wrote: »
    Thank you for explaining what I'm seeing in that comic. All I saw myself were flashes of light and color, and I just couldn't figure out what I was looking at no matter which way I tilted my head, in the way a dog tilts its head when confused.

    Indeed, I actually had no clue what was even going on in this story. In previous comic series, it was clear that I was looking at, say, "robot detectives" or "future cowboys" or "actual real boyscout snipe hunts". I just couldn't find a corner on this particular candy wrapper to start pulling it open, it just so confused me. Saying it was "nightlight" did little to illuminate (is that irony?), because I had no idea what THAT was either. All I saw was comic 1, wherein a dad and a mom were fighting over some little gir's attention.

    @Dark Jaguar Here's the link to the original "Nighlight" comic that inspired Grace's story.

    http://www.penny-arcade.com/comic/2015/06/24

    And, even with that comic in mind, I didn't really "get" it. In fact, I was pretty sure that comic was a one-off joke (the punchline being he actually has to kill a real monster), and I didn't even realize they intended to make some dark version of a Monster Inc world. Frankly, I'm not alone on this. All my friends agree that this latest story is pretty impenetrable without a lot of inside baseball. I figure I'd have had to read some FAQ or something else somewhere online where they outlined their intentions to actually have "got" this the first time around. That is to say, they really need to add a post on the main page that explains this a bit better, like this particular thread post they've put together.

    geekd
  • WordLustWordLust Fort Wayne, INRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    Jerry's a fucking bad ass with a pen. If you do not agree, I have a hand you may speak to. I actually have two of them, in case the first one gets tired---a very real possibility since, I have to be honest, they are not the best listeners.

    If anyone is holding Mike back, it's people on the internet with mostly id for brain trying to keep him chained to dick jokes. Meanwhile Jerry is helping to push Mike by being an editor of sorts. Not an editor in the sense of "correcting" or "proofreading" Mike (that would just result in a lot of tychpos), but in the sense of helping Mike to explore and distill the ideas. If not "editor" then maybe "crux identifier". And Mike is performing the same role for Jerry in his own way.

    It seems that Mike thinks very much in images, so if he gets an idea for a concept and starts
    brainstorming, his inner idea machine explodes like a confetti bomb of mental images waiting to become art. But it seems like a lot of the time when Mike gets an idea that inspires him, it's sort of like getting an exciting concept, and then going crazy with the implications in the form of a stream of enthusiastic concept art. And there is no limit to what you can do with concept art. It's still mostly an art jam at that point. If all you're doing is art, then the work is done at that point. But if you want that art to be arranged in a sequence that becomes a game, a movie, or a comic, then not all the concept art is going to make it in. Artists don't like throwing anything out, so who's going to come in with the hedge trimmers?

    Jerry seems pretty good at walking into that part of Mike's process and recognizing the patterns in the flurry of images, plucking out a particular sequence of them, then laying them before Mike and saying, "I found an interesting thing inside of your interesting thing," which is a way of providing focus but also a way of reigniting the excitement for the concept. This is a real job that real creatives pay real money for, and Mike has a person like that sitting right across from him every day, who not only does that job, but genuinely loves doing it. Mike's work excites him. And what's better is that Jerry actually probably understands Mike and what Mike is interested in and cares about artistically more than any other non-Mike person would, so Mike would probably have a really hard time finding a non-Jerry who could give him useful feedback/criticism/questions in a way he'd be satisfied with in the same way. If you've got some dude with hedge trimmers cutting up your ideas and your work, you probably would prefer if it was a guy who understands and appreciates you as an artist and knows how to discuss your ideas/work in a way that works for you and doesn't make you just want to stab him.

    At the same time, it seems that if Jerry sits down and writes something, and then maybe he starts to get stuck, Mike can walk in and be like, "I magically transformed some of your words I especially liked into some pictures of how I imagined them," and upon seeing Mike's incredible magic trick, Jerry is reinvigorated. So Mike gets to be a sort of crux identifier for Jerry, too.

    Also, I agree with rchou that Jerry's "Actual Life" post was one of the best things I've ever read.

    OKAY THEN. ABOUT THE COMICS.

    All that being said, while I'm not sure about how effectively the time structure of this particular series of strips work, I do very much like the idea of Nightlight and I definitely like Grace. The orphanage full of battle nuns also sounds pretty rad.

    My biggest question for this story and universe would be what ties it all together and makes it interesting outside the context of bed time? How does the existence of these actual monsters and the people who fight them take shape when both of those adversaries are "off the clock"? Where do the monsters come from? Is there some kind of Monsters Inc type source of them? Do people who can see the monsters recognize each other? Are they sort of like the wizards in Harry Potter, where they all kind of recognize each other somehow and everyone else are "muggles"? Are there, like, guardian politics? Maybe they have disagreements over guardian practices just like parents have disagreements over parenting practices and so they can get kind of snippy and judgy toward other guardians. "Oh you just told her to brush her teeth twice? Like that's even going to keep her out of danger! How do people like you even become protectors? If you had any sense you would have yack yack yack yack yack etc". Do guardians spend all day worrying about bed time? Are there wise guardians who have been in the business a long time? Some parents' kids grow up, but people like the nuns who have done nothing but protect new generations of kids their entire lives... they've probably battled A LOT of these things. There must be like a Sister Miyagi nun or something.

    Keep being artists, both Jerry and Mike.

    WordLust on
    PsychosmileycalamityjamieziddersroofurryPsykomaJacques L'Homme
  • PeriSoftPeriSoft Registered User regular
    firepoet wrote: »
    at his age I don't think he can fix them.

    Yeah, because, you know, writing is totally a young man's game. If you haven't won the writing championship in your 20s your career is over. If you weren't writing in karts when you were five, well, there's just no hope for going pro.

    Wait, what were we talking about?

  • GDT1985GDT1985 Registered User regular
    WordLust wrote: »
    Jerry's a fucking bad ass with a pen. If you do not agree, I have a hand you may speak to. I actually have two of them, in case the first one gets tired---a very real possibility since, I have to be honest, they are not the best listeners.

    If anyone is holding Mike back, it's people on the internet with mostly id for brain trying to keep him chained to dick jokes. Meanwhile Jerry is helping to push Mike by being an editor of sorts. Not an editor in the sense of "correcting" or "proofreading" Mike (that would just result in a lot of tychpos), but in the sense of helping Mike to explore and distill the ideas. If not "editor" then maybe "crux identifier". And Mike is performing the same role for Jerry in his own way.

    It seems that Mike thinks very much in images, so if he gets an idea for a concept and starts
    brainstorming, his inner idea machine explodes like a confetti bomb of mental images waiting to become art. But it seems like a lot of the time when Mike gets an idea that inspires him, it's sort of like getting an exciting concept, and then going crazy with the implications in the form of a stream of enthusiastic concept art. And there is no limit to what you can do with concept art. It's still mostly an art jam at that point. If all you're doing is art, then the work is done at that point. But if you want that art to be arranged in a sequence that becomes a game, a movie, or a comic, then not all the concept art is going to make it in. Artists don't like throwing anything out, so who's going to come in with the hedge trimmers?

    Jerry seems pretty good at walking into that part of Mike's process and recognizing the patterns in the flurry of images, plucking out a particular sequence of them, then laying them before Mike and saying, "I found an interesting thing inside of your interesting thing," which is a way of providing focus but also a way of reigniting the excitement for the concept. This is a real job that real creatives pay real money for, and Mike has a person like that sitting right across from him every day, who not only does that job, but genuinely loves doing it. Mike's work excites him. And what's better is that Jerry actually probably understands Mike and what Mike is interested in and cares about artistically more than any other non-Mike person would, so Mike would probably have a really hard time finding a non-Jerry who could give him useful feedback/criticism/questions in a way he'd be satisfied with in the same way. If you've got some dude with hedge trimmers cutting up your ideas and your work, you probably would prefer if it was a guy who understands and appreciates you as an artist and knows how to discuss your ideas/work in a way that works for you and doesn't make you just want to stab him.

    At the same time, it seems that if Jerry sits down and writes something, and then maybe he starts to get stuck, Mike can walk in and be like, "I magically transformed some of your words I especially liked into some pictures of how I imagined them," and upon seeing Mike's incredible magic trick, Jerry is reinvigorated. So Mike gets to be a sort of crux identifier for Jerry, too.

    Also, I agree with rchou that Jerry's "Actual Life" post was one of the best things I've ever read.


    OKAY THEN. ABOUT THE COMICS.

    All that being said, while I'm not sure about how effectively the time structure of this particular series of strips work, I do very much like the idea of Nightlight and I definitely like Grace. The orphanage full of battle nuns also sounds pretty rad.

    My biggest question for this story and universe would be what ties it all together and makes it interesting outside the context of bed time? How does the existence of these actual monsters and the people who fight them take shape when both of those adversaries are "off the clock"? Where do the monsters come from? Is there some kind of Monsters Inc type source of them? Do people who can see the monsters recognize each other? Are they sort of like the wizards in Harry Potter, where they all kind of recognize each other somehow and everyone else are "muggles"? Are there, like, guardian politics? Maybe they have disagreements over guardian practices just like parents have disagreements over parenting practices and so they can get kind of snippy and judgy toward other guardians. "Oh you just told her to brush her teeth twice? Like that's even going to keep her out of danger! How do people like you even become protectors? If you had any sense you would have yack yack yack yack yack etc". Do guardians spend all day worrying about bed time? Are there wise guardians who have been in the business a long time? Some parents' kids grow up, but people like the nuns who have done nothing but protect new generations of kids their entire lives... they've probably battled A LOT of these things. There must be like a Sister Miyagi nun or something.

    Keep being artists, both Jerry and Mike.

    *Slow Clap*

    RiuscalamityjamieziddersroofurryKoopahTroopahJacques L'Homme
  • RavenKeereRavenKeere Registered User new member
    I'm getting the sense that a lot of people don't understand how "writing a story" works; especially not when it's in a "comic format". You can't/shouldn't tell your whole story in the first panel, nor should you reveal too much. The best stories all start off slow, they leave room throughout the whole piece for characters to grow; the environment to be revealed piece by piece. You build with each panel/paragraph an intricate world populated with "real" people. You string the audience along giving them just enough information at each stage to keep them interested and hungry for more. We didn't know from jump who the Nightlight in the family was because it wasn't yet time for that reveal, all we were supposed to know from jump was that this was a loving and happy family. Just as you can't know everything about a person in the first minutes after you meet them, you also can't know everything there is to know about a world and it's people in the first sentences/frame of a story.
    In the world of writing this is known as "pacing". As anyone who has taken a creative writing class, or a class on literature, or in many cases English 111, and sometimes in high school English classes, would know. Couple that with the fact that our writer and our artist have made it clear that they deliberately write these one off's as loose as possible so that the audience is free to "fill it in" with their own ideas and write their own stories, it's obvious why this (and all of the others) might feel a little unpolished or unfinished to some. I, for one, am very pleased with the pacing of this story, i feel the characters and world are revealed and grown in a natural and pleasing way.
    For anyone interested in learning more about how to build a narrative, might i recommend Stephen King's On Writing, The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr and EB White, and The Writing Life, by Annie Dillard. Obviously there are many more books out there to teach the budding author how to write, and many more to teach us how to read, these are just a few. But the best advice for the budding author is to read, read, read, read some more, and while you're at it, read. Good books, bad books, every book you can get your hands on, read it. But what do i know? This little post is stuffed full of terrible grammar and bad writing.

    RoyceSraphim
  • metroidkillahmetroidkillah Local Bunman Free Country, USARegistered User regular
    @WordLust: Where did the nuns come from? WHAT DID I MISS?!

    I'm not a nice guy, I just play one in real life.
  • WordLustWordLust Fort Wayne, INRegistered User regular
    edited August 2015
    @WordLust: Where did the nuns come from? WHAT DID I MISS?!

    You must have missed Mike's post!

    http://www.penny-arcade.com/news/post/2015/07/31/nightlight-and-my-dad

    *edit*

    I also wanted to add, just in case he is reading this thread at all, that Jerry is my favorite part of Penny Arcade and, while I'm sure I would have come to Penny Arcade and laughed a few times without him, I don't think I would be a regular Penny Arcade reader at all if Jerry's voice and talents were not a part of it.

    WordLust on
    metroidkillah
  • OreoOreo Registered User regular
    @metroidkillah Nuns were mentioned in a newspost, I think.

    This series was great. As others have said, people can get confused if they only read these strips as they come out. Sometimes I don't get to check the site for a few weeks, and then I get to binge. This is one of those times, and I am grateful for it.

    After all these years I am still amazed that some people only seem to come for the comic, and don't read the accompanying posts. (Not including you in this @metroidkillah ) Besides adding dimension to the comic du jour, a lot of other information is densely packed in there. One of my all-time favorites is the one that accompanied the Ninja Gaiden comic about all the ninja behind the wall. I couldn't stop laughing at that post.

    One of the problems some people probably have with this series is that it challenges the reader, rather than spoon-feeding the information. What I see in this thread is the same thing I heard about Pulp Fiction when it was in theaters: "It's confusing. I didn't understand it." When I finally saw it a few months later, all the context clues were there, so I was able to follow the story fairly well.

    Finally, it could be that the people who aren't finding the emotional connection to this arc aren't married and/or don't have children. It changes your worldview, and suddenly many things come into sharper focus. As a married father of 3, with two "still around," all of the Nightlight comics have resonated with authenticity others might miss.

    Thank you, Mike and Jerry, for such amazing work.

  • dennisdennis aka bingley Registered User regular
    Gabriel wrote: »
    For those interested I thought I would break down our take on the story. That's not to say this is the "correct" one. We like to write loose stories and my guess is that will always rub some folks the wrong way.

    Mike (hope you're still checking in to this thread),

    Thanks so much for linking to this in your news post. I have to be honest and say that the story didn't really click with me until I read this. I mostly understood it, but having it fully linked together with your explanation helped the impact of it a lot.

    I think this is a challenge you face with presenting it in the comic like you do. I think my problem was that I didn't understand the jumps back and forth in time and that the tie Clancy was wearing implied they'd just come back from the funeral (I saw it, I just didn't link it).

    I had a little bit of this problem with the Lookouts. Some stuff just confused me. I don't know if what you need is more transitional stuff (a panel of the family at the graveside with Clancy's outfit would definitely help.) I think it's probably also hard because you guys have this stuff in your head and you don't always see what's missing.

    I write this to be purely constructive. I have always been and remain a big supporter of what you guys do in all sorts of projects, even when they don't click with me. I'm glad you take risks and grow.

    Take care!

  • GanluanGanluan Registered User regular
    rchou wrote: »
    firepoet wrote: »

    I don't think Jerry is on the same level as Mike. He never wrote anything, except newsposts, whereas Mike has been drawing his whole life. Now Mike is ready for the big time, and Jerry just isn't.


    Imma let you finish but Jerry created one of the best creative nonfiction pieces of all time.

    Holy shit, this is incredible. Ironically enough (since some people say this has turned into a "dad comic"), I'd be interested in reading more things like this since I have a son of my own, and it's always interesting to read how other people's experiences have shaped them.

  • FrapJediFrapJedi Registered User new member
    Loved this strip, and would very much like to see more of this character and her world. I've been following you guys for a long time, and have really enjoyed the way that the writing, and especially the art have grown. This strip in particular is some of the best work you've ever produced.

  • J-mentalJ-mental Registered User regular
    I guess I just don't get it. I know I'm way late to the game here, but this whole two week thing with Grace has just been confusing to me. I read the strips as they came out. I went back and I looked them over all at once hoping I'd get some more perspective. I have no goddamn clue what's going on. I guess I'm just not smart enough or 'with it' to grasp some of these concepts.

    There seems to be some time jumping (Though honest to God I'm not even really sure, the characters could be time jumping around or they could just be in different rooms with different people I have no way to tell) and we're never given a place or time anything is happening for me to get a good grasp on just what the heck is going on.

    I'm sure it's an artistic choice rather than some sort of oversight, but as a result you lost me.

    Either way, doesn't matter. The art was really good and out there and I've been reading these comics since I was a Freshman in Highschool so I'm here for life regardless.

  • ImNotAnAthleteImNotAnAthlete Registered User regular
    I liked the original idea for Nightlight. Grace started out strong but I it didn't finish strong. I would like for this to be revisited with the original characters from that first one page comic.

  • ziddersroofurryziddersroofurry Registered User regular
    J-mental wrote: »
    I guess I just don't get it. I know I'm way late to the game here, but this whole two week thing with Grace has just been confusing to me.

    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/comment/33105475/#Comment_33105475

  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    Overall I think "Grace" was pretty OK. The art was very nice. The conclusion was strong. The first comic still in retrospect feels a little wasted and I would have to agree with someone who said that the whole "there's enough Grace for everyone" thing came off too schmaltzy. And I think they could have saved readers some headaches by just reversing the order of comics two and three so that there isn't a time jump to after mom's death to before and back again.

    I didn't like this as much as I did the original "Nightlight" one-shot comic. It wasn't bad, it was even fairly good actually, but it did not live up to the expectations/hopes "Nightlight" gave me because "Nightlight" was great.

    I really wish Mike and Jerry would apply themselves to one of these serial stories as a complete, linear, self-contained narrative. I don't think "Grace" was too difficult to follow but it definitely leaves a lot of frustrating questions - and not in the good way, the "I have to see more!" way, more the "I don't have enough context or background information to care about this as much as the creators seem to want me to" kind of way. It feels sometimes like Mike and Jerry forget that we the readers are not privy to all of the details of these worlds they create which they talk about together or they just don't want to bother with the effort of communicating those things in the actual comics... so they expect too much from the audience in terms of interpreting implications, guessing about backstory and context, referring to other comics from months or years before, or just waiting for explanations in forum or news posts. "Grace" feels rather disjointed, the last Lookouts/Eyrewood story was nearly inscrutable, and while the last Automata story was relatively solid the ending was a puzzling mess.

    ArteenBloodySloth
  • RoyceSraphimRoyceSraphim Registered User regular
    Grace underlines why Automata was doled out in smaller stories and not one bigger thing. The fact that we are talking about it and people are coming to say that they don't understand it means that both the people who understood it and the people that didn't have some interest in it (excluding trolls).

    As an idea and setting now, its not ready, similar to how Automata and Lookouts needed time and fleshing out. By dropping hints and setpieces at the start of the creative process, Gabe and Tycho can get a feel for the faults of the story and what needs to be done.

    Now Grace isn't fighting a monster that big in her brother's small room and can't run that far or fast, but there is magic involved and in future installments of Nightlight, we just have to let the magic be and accept we cant see everything.

  • PAX_SkeletorPAX_Skeletor Melbourne, AustraliaRegistered User regular
    It'd probably never happen, but I'd be so happy if they dropped the PA strips back to two a week, with the third comic being a new instalment in one of their side-project worlds. One can dream.

    cB557Jacques L'Homme
  • StericaSterica Yes Registered User, Moderator mod
    When the mom died isn't relevant. I figured mom had been dead for a while and Dad was still trying to handle it so Grace took on monster slayer for her brother.

    The exact details may not be clear, but they aren't vital to grasping the general basis of the story.

    YL9WnCY.png
    darleysamTheCanMancB557Jacques L'Homme
  • VontreVontre Registered User regular
    I've read every PA comic for the past 10 years or so and I say this only as the utmost sincere fan, the narrative strips have been getting nigh impenetrable as of late. I can see that the clues are there if you really pay attention to everything, but a story like this should not be that hard to figure out. When I see the mom dieing of cancer I assumed this was a story about cancer, and I went back and assumed the second comic was the dad grieving over the diagnosis. Who would assume a time skip if they weren't already looking for it? It's not normal for readers to pull apart those details and clues (like the little girl's age is supposed to the smoking gun, but it's incredibly easy to ignore and forget about) in their first read of a very short story. When something is very cryptic like this I start looking for metaphors and symbolism and deeper meanings, and I didn't really find anything that profound even after the explanation. It's just a very simple and ordinary story that takes a lot of work to decipher.

    The fact that I and lots of other people apparently did not get it is not a stance that has to be justified; it's just what happened. So I don't begrudge anyone that did get it and loved it, but I want to strongly encourage Gabe and Tycho to rethink their approach to their narrative structure in their next projects. Accessibility is important for most works and if you have a profound message you want to layer into your stories, you need to grab your audience first before they're going to dig in deeper. At least that's how you can expect it to work for most people.

    Still a big fan, but please make these stories easier to understand and they'll be more enjoyable!

  • Commander ZoomCommander Zoom Registered User regular
    Vontre wrote: »
    It's not normal for readers to pull apart those details and clues [...] in their first read of a very short story.

    ... it's not?

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