Future Comics: Boulet’s The Long Journey

boulet the long journey

by Serhend Sirkecioglu

Boulet is awesome, nuff said. The French cartoonist is very popular in his home country, and his amazing 24 hour comic published here by AdHouse as Noirness has begun to get him a well deserved US following.

If you’re not reading his stuff already, here’s a comic of all kinds of awe to begin with. The Long Journey is a scroll comic that’s a pixelated style of a cynical and dream-like self reflection through the mind of Boulet as he goes deeper and deeper into an atmospheric world of absurdities and wonder. Dinosaur eating Nazis, technically herbivorous demons, and a make out session with a mermaid just flow seamlessly into one another as Boulet effortlessly shifts from falling amongst the sky and clouds, diving into the abyssal plain and wandering amongst a pastoral field of orange cabbages. You can’t help but want to listen to some music as you read this (which I’m gonna try out as I read it again) comic—the pacing suggests a rhythmic quality and it’s no surprise coming from such a great cartoonist.

I attribute the success of this comic to Boulet knowing what actually works in terms of “future” webcomics and doing it well. The three element of webcomics that work are scrolling, gifs, and to a lesser extent rollovers. The reason is that these are the simplest and most accessible forms of interactions people comprehend on the internet (just look at Tumblr and Vine’s success). I cringe when I see motion comics and fully animated panels because the time and energy (not to mention money) put into them exceeds and contradicts the off-the-cuff and “good enough” nature of cartooning. We spend enough time drawing, writing, and lettering; programming and animation is pushing our limits and too many hands on a comic.

My rant aside, there’s no excuse not to read The Long Journey; just sit back, scroll, and enjoy.

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