“Tight storytelling” is a writing buzzword that I use a lot but have difficulty actually defining, so today I’m challenging myself to do so. A tight story, in my mind, is one that feels efficient – no time is wasted on sideplots or other developments that don’t directly serve the main storyline. This doesn’t necessarily mean a completely straight shot from beginning to end, but it definitely excludes the sprawling, twisting threads of most webcomics I can think of.
This is maybe an odd one to revisit during a “spring cleaning” period considering that the review is only a few months old, but I ended it on an extremely ironic note and that’s got me to thinking: am I too cynical?
Going back and reading these old reviews is something of an exercise in humility. I like to think I’m a fairly professional critic, but that hasn’t always been the case. My Namesake review reads as amateurish to me now; I clearly didn’t have a strong sense of what I wanted to say and instead used the review format to hash out my feelings about the comic, trying to divine some deeper mystery. That’s a weak review, so let me take this opportunity to strengthen it.
Hey folks, I’m gonna spend the next couple weeks updating some of my older reviews, in honor of spring’s return. Contact form is still in the shop, so if you have suggestions for which comics you’d like to see me revisit, comment below or DM me on twitter!
An addendum for Snarlbear has been brewing in my skull ever since it finished. It’s a terrific comic, a classic in its own time, and I feel like it deserves some parting words. Obviously, inevitably, spoilers below.