November 29th, 2008, 10:34 pm
It looks like I'm making another news entry here because I've made yet another Brainstrain post.
But wait...I didn't see a joke in the new strip, did you?
The answer is no. There was nothing funny in the new strip, at least there wasn't anything meant to be funny in the new strip. As a matter of fact, there isn't likely to be much that is funny for the next few strips, assuming that I can actually bring myself to draw them.
You see, I made a realization the other day when I was thinking about Brainstrain as a comic. The realization that I made is that nothing has been happening in it, and I finally know why. The last time that I really did any serious work on Brainstrain was my first year of college. I found myself sitting there thinking today, "What happened that stopped everything from being funny at Christmas of my first year of college...other than me doing that plot line where I shot Blue?" The answer that I came to was that I was forced through a shitstorm of drama, most of which was about romantic garbage.
You see, it caught me by surprise really. I thought that I was going to be fine, because there was no way that I would get caught up in all of this romance garbage, because I was turned down so many times in High School that the idea of actually finding romance for myself pretty much left my mind. It was out of this little bit of information that Brainstrain as an actual comic was born.
Now, I'm sure I've told you all the story of how Brainstrain actually came to be. If I haven't, well, then gather round, children. It's story time.
In grade 11, in Art Class, I was desperate to fit in and make friends, because I was pretty much an outcast socially. It actually wasn't until Grade 12 when I finally started opening up and made friends. In grade 11 though, one day we all found ourselves sitting at the desk, making jokes at someone else's expense and it came down to making stupid little comics to make fun of each other. Because I'm just such a painfully nice guy, I ended up making fun of the Hockey team from Toronto instead of making fun of any of the people who I wanted to call friends. This is where Brainstrain started, as a cry for attention.
What it then evolved into was a cry out at the world for what had happened. I was angry that no one in my world was romantically interested in me, and I longed for a world that I could push myself into where everything was flowery and nice, and that kind of romance drama only happened to other people. I wanted to believe that romance could happen, but at the same time, my common sense and experience told me that it was never going to happen, even in an imaginary world that I created for myself. Thus started the first arc with the Valentines Day Fairy, with all of that horrible, horrible art.
From there it developed a little bit. It became less of me being angry at the world, and more an exercise in immediacy where I would sometimes take the funny things that happened in my life, and make comics about them, but most of the time, start on panel one and draw until panel 4 when I would find out what it was that happened. There was a wonderful humor that I found in something that was completely random like that, and as time progressed my thought processes started to outrun my pencil. Once we get into the whole actual hand drawn stuff in there with the 'dark duo' it stopped being about the journey and more about how I was going to get to the destination that I had planned. This was alright, and while it wasn't as fun, there was something wonderful about being able to follow through with a story like that.
The problem came up when my life was plunged into drama...just not directly. You see, the drama was in the people who were around me rather than happening to myself. My male best friend had developed a giant crush on my female best friend at the time, and while he wasn't saying anything about it, it was obvious to pretty much everyone around. It was around this point that something dramatic happened in Brainstrain. Blue was shot.
I didn't realize why I did that at the time, and really, right now, I still don't. I think I've narrowed it down to me either needing to take a break from brainstrain to try and figure out what was actually going on, or possibly just a desire to return to my roots and have something completely random that even I didn't expect happen. In any case, it happened and I moved into the last story arc that has actually happened, the christmas story arc, that was only supposed to take about two weeks to write and draw. It was going to be utterly ridiculous and silly, and was going to be very similar to the Christmas Carol story that we all know a bit too well. The problem was that when I reached the end, I had spent so much time knowing where everything would go, that I didn't know where I should go anymore, and nothing that I started completely randomly seemed to make sense anymore.
And so I stopped for a while until I suddenly developed a new crazy plan that was going to be very much like an old childhood television show, the Odyssey, in which an 11 year old boy fell into a coma and had a bizarre adventure. The only problem was that I really didn't know where to start. That was supposed to be the dreams story arc which I attempted to start, but never really did get into.
After that Brainstrain was pretty much on life support, and really still is.
It was today that I realized all of my problems though. The first was that I lost the sense of random, and the sense of chaos long ago. The second is that I created pretty much a perfect world where everyone is happy, but I don't know anything about perfect worlds where everything is happy. For the past two years I've been living with just one parent thanks to the things that people have to do for work. For the past 3 years I've been without a job myself because apparently I have no employable skills. My romantic advances have been turned down something like 15 times. It has been proposed that I be a rebound guy for the girl proposing it once. I have not been on a single date. I have never kissed a girl. I don't think I've even actually ever hugged a girl. I look back at my 21 years of life, and I'm not sure I've done anything other than take up space.
It is because of all of those wonderful little facts that we are where we are now. I have made a rather drastic decision. I am going to take one part of this perfect little world that I have created, and then I'm going to destroy it...and now we are going to get to see what happens. At least it will bring back that random chaos that I miss so much.