Friday, June 11, 2010
Asperchu: Putting the Comic back in Webcomic
( WARNING: Links are Not Safe For Work )
Asperchu, written and illustrated by Alec Benson Leary, is my current favorite webcomic. It is a parody of a very specific source; the webcomic Sonichu, by Christian Weston Chandler. Hence, you'll have to bone up on your knowledge of Chris-Chan before you can appreciate it. Fortunately, the man's life is documented here in all its pathetic glory.
A cursory look at Chris-Chan shows that he's an unlimited source of fuel for parody. He is quite possibly the most laughable excuse for a human being ever documented. He became internet-famous for his childishly-drawn comic about a mixture between Sonic the Hedgehog and Pikachu the Pokemon. His comic is set in the town of CWCville, where Chris inserts himself as the mayor. He regularly uses the comic to fight villains based on those in his real life, ranging from the trolls who make fun of him on the internet to the mall cops who take issue with his loitering. He's a fundamentalist Christian who regularly draws cartoon animals having sex, a vicious homophobe who takes every chance he can get to declare that he is in fact heterosexual, a creepy stalker who has drawn erotic fan art of ( former ) female friends, and a 28-year-old man still living with his parents off of welfare. He's apparently autistic, but he routinely bashes people with Asperger's for taking attention away from him, takes a strong pro-cure stance, and basically uses his disorder as an excuse not to do anything with his life. Thanks to the internet, however, he's an idiot for the global village.
Leary uses all this material in full force. Asperchu himself is a mixture between Sonichu and Chris himself, with the portly physique, childish shirts, and gaudy medallion. He lives in CWCville, but Leary's portrayal of the town makes it out to be a North Korea-type ego-opolis, with the real Chris-Chan replaced by a psychopathic man-child impostor. The trolls that Chris-Chan rails against in real life are a heroic underground resistance, fighting against a corrupt dictator who forces women into prostitution under the guise of " Dating Education ". Even Chris' own creations appear as rebels against him, with Sonichu in particular going on a hysterical revenge spree against his " father ". In the meantime, Asperchu is more of a foolish figurehead than a heroic protagonist, idly playing video games ( with an near-infinite supply of handheld consoles that he just pulls out of thin air ) while all this is going on. He has some importance to the larger plot, but while his destiny is calling him, he's too lazy to pick up the phone.
The art is extremely simplistic on purpose ( as a spoof of Chris' terrible Crayola comics ), but the subject matter is as dark as possible. This story, after all, is based on the imagination of a 28-year-old man with the maturity of an 8-year-old and the libidio of a 14-year-old. The strip seems to be based simply on trying to piss Chris off, and of all the people to troll the man-child, Leary has done it the best by far. Everything in this comic is a reference to just how pathetic Chris is, ranging from the protagonist drawing upon Chris' own sloth, to the overtly homo-erotic interactions between Sonichu and Asperchu, to the use of Chris' arch-enemies as heroic figures. It's extremely dark and creepy, but if you have the stomach, hilarious.