Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Webcomic Whenever - WIGU!

Jeffrey Rowland is one of the best success stories in webcomics. He started in 1999, with a sort-of okay comic called When I Grow Up. It wasn't bad, but it never really stood out from the crowd. After a few years Rowland gave up on it, and that's where these stories usually end.

But Rowland is a cooler-than-average dude, so instead of going back to his dayjob and occasionally awkwardly mentioning to coworkers at social gatherings that he used to be a cartoonist, he started another comic, called Wigu. Wigu was almost immediately better than Rowland's previous attempt. The characters were sharper, the writing was funnier, and the serial adventures were more delightfully ridiculous.

Wigu is the story of a young boy named Wigu Tinkle. He has a goth older sister named Paisley, an uber-professional mom, and a well-intentioned but somewhat misguided father. They go on adventures together.

The other thing about Wigu is that his imagination is the key to the continued existence of an alternate universe known as Butter Dimension 3. His favorite cartoon characters (stars of a show known as "Magical Adventures In Space") are actually from here, such as the flying potato Topato (who is actually made of poison) and his sidekick Sheriff Pony.

If all of this seems totally bizarre and insular, that's because it is. The whole thing is just this wonderful web of weird self-references and long absurdist tales.

It's funny, it's loveable, and it's almost hypnotic.

So anyways, Jeffrey Rowland did Wigu for a long time. But then he stopped, and started working on another, more traditional, comic called Overcompensating. Which was great. And he started a company called Topatoco, which is such an awesome thing it deserves its own post.

Now he's gone back to doing Wigu. As of like, a few days ago.

And you should read it.

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