Friday, November 30, 2012

Stuck Home

I mentioned 'Homestuck' before when I spoke about web - comics. Admittedly it probably shouldn't have because, as the author Andrew Hussie clearly states, "[he] doesn't simply draw Homestuck." It's a quote more telling that meets the eye. 'Homestuck' is not something simply drawn and posted on the Internet for all to see, and it's a interesting example of what future art could be.

Though to do that, we have to discuss the burning question on multiple minds: 'what is Homestuck?' To answer, Homestuck is about four 13 year olds, John, Rose, Dave, and Jade, they play a video game. Spoilers ahoy!: Then the video game plays them. The game in question leads to the destruction of their planet, introduces them to an alien species called Trolls, and gives them a lot of enemies (which, to give you a heads up on what to expect, includes Betty Crocker and a puppet). In turns out the purpose of their game is to sacrifice one world to create a brand new universe, which they later do. At this moment, the fandom is watching the adventures of four new kids: Jade, Roxy, Dirk, and Jake.

But on the surface of that quote, you could say Hussie meant that Homestuck wasn't such drawn, it was also animated by flash. Music accompanied various pages so you not only saw art, you heard it too. You can also hear the fans' (often known as Homestucks) excitement whenever a [S] link appears.

More to the point however is the fact that Hussie creates elements of the story based on fan reaction. For instance, take the recentally introduced Calliope, Caliborn. To summarize, Calliope (green eyes above) is a cherub, a green - skinned, bald species that has to live by certain magic rules. One of said rules is having a 'sibling' inside their body, in her case Caliborn (red eyes below). Calliope and Caliborn, since another rule dictates that they are chained to one side of the room for each of them, interact with others (like four of the human protagonists) using a computer that lets see Jane, Jake, Dirk, and Roxy (said four human protagonists). The cherubs however, come from a different time than the humans, so to them a lot of the adventures the humans will have have gone by. Calliope, after reading their stories, is an avid fan of the kids, Caliborn, who's also read their stories, hates everything about them.

Meaning, their practically the fandom and the anti - fandom personified (chreubified?)

Calliopes has written fanfiction and draw fanart just as the readers of Homestuck have. Caliborn has grouched about the developments of the plots and loathes most of the new characters, just as those who complain about Homestuck have. If it weren't for the audience and their reactions in the first place, neither of these characters might exist.

It's interesting because this time in history may be the first to have an art medium that reacts to the audience. Obviously the artists of the past could hear and respond to criticisms of their works but Homestuck represents something beyond just that. The art in this case changes because of the onlookers, ideas of the fandom become part of what they are fanning about.

Also,  fan drawings and fan music (yes, fans have submit music based on Homestuck) have become used for Homestuck CDs, which is a lot more exciting to the lucky fan than if they just listened to music one author made. In a way, it might be more enticing to people who aren't normally comic/art/music infinicados. It's more to go to the beach and feel the sun and the waves crash over your skin than just watch it happening on TV.

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