exploded in strange appendages

astray3-1

Just read through the entire archive of a webcomic called Astray3, by Eldon Cowgur–it’s excellent.  It’s the story of a young woman pulled into a fantastic (and often horrific) alternate universe populated by a panoply of monsters.  I know, I know, you’ve heard that one before, but the story is in the telling, and Astray3 is told with relish and care, not to mention talent.

The whole series has a genuine Early Marvel feel to it, from the constant chatter of dialogue, to the rollicking pace, to the never-ending stream of bizarre creatures.  Emily, our heroine, has a real Stan Lee accent, talking herself (and us) through every situation, adapting nonchalantly to her new lifestyle, and spilling our her every thought for all to see.  A lot of people have tried to imitate that classic style, but such attempts usually fall flat, reading as bland parodies or cloying nostalgia pieces–but Cowgur nails it.  The writing is sincere and engaging, holding up better than a lot of those old Marvel stories do, and the art is spot on, fulled to the brim with new and weird in every panel.  

Astray3 seems to keep a solid weekly schedule (I say, having just read it all at once), and I’m hoping it’ll stick around.  Go ahead and check it out, True Believers.

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5 Responses

  1. Wow thanks for the review Vincent. This is really great of you guys.
    Stan Lee? Didn’t think I was hamming it up that much. If you want to see my real attempt at Stan dialogue, check out the Dick Dynamo comic book. http://www.dickdynamo.com/?page_id=9

    I owe you one.

    • Well, maybe not a Full-Stan, but something like a Half-Stan, or maybe a Two-Thirds-Stan :) Did you set out to work within that sort of Old Marvel sensibility, or is it just how the story came together?

  2. I’m just very classically minded when it comes to comics. So you can say that early Jack Kirby comics have a big influence on me, and of course most of those comics featured Stan Lee writing. But, it could just be that 1940s-1960s period that I draw most of my inspiration from.

    When creating Astray3, my aim is to make a more contemporary “old fashioned” adventure strip. Since you felt the strip was “old Marvel” in style, I can’t be too far off the mark.

    • Absolutely. You’ve got the right combination of retro and contemporary–it never seems dated (unlike, say, Claremont’s work in the past ten years). I didn’t even notice at first, ’til I started thinking “what’s so familiar about this style?”, and there it was, plain as day.

  3. […] to Eldon Cowgur of Astray3, who’s pushing on towards his first anniversary!*  I did a write-up of this great, nostalgic, extremely regular strip over at The Elephant a while back and, like a […]

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