Author Archive: Adam J. Smithee

rss feed

#6 – The Grizzled Webcomic Vet

| November 23, 2010 | 1 Comment

Like his counterparts The Female and L’artiste, The Grizzled Webcomic Vet is a new creative aspect fighting for control of the webcomic The Apple of Discord in the power vacuum left by the abdication of the original Artist character.   Unlike the others, there’s a chance he may actually know what he’s doing.  This is not his first dance with webcomics, nor is it likely this will be his last.

See… he was there.  A different handle on a different network, but he was there when webcomics started.  He’s seen the birth of diary comics, and sprite comics, and fan comics, and gamer comics.  He’s witnessed the rise of greatness, the creation of horrible darkness, the ascension of the talentless and the descent of the gifted.

And sure, it’s left him more than a little… scarred, both physically and mentally.  He has trouble trusting people, automatically assumes everyone around him is a teenage boy, and holds himself (and others) to a standard of conduct that is probably impossible to live up to.  He likes doing things the hard way, because he believes that anything worth doing is worth doing right, and is not above silently (ok, not so silently) judging others who take shortcuts and cheat.  That doesn’t mean he isn’t an incredible ally to have with you, though – if anybody knows what’s going on, what to expect, and what needs to be done next, it’s ol’ Griz.  Motivating him to care may be hard, but once he’s committed to do something, he’ll see it through.

Don’t ask about how he lost his eye.  Here’s a hint – it was shortly after he lost his hand and had the hook installed.  Mistakes were made, lessons were learned, and one day he’s sure they’ll let him back into that McDonalds.

#5 – The Crazy-Ass Webcomic L’Artiste

| November 22, 2010 | 0 Comments

Just like Entry 4, the Female Webcomic Artist, this is another new “creative power” vying over the right to be The Apple of Discord’s creative control.

L’artiste draws his… her… its strength from pure artistic intent, irregardless of whether it actually makes sense, adds to the body of work, or even looks “good” when finished.  Since art is the goal as opposed to… amongst other things, quality… this creator may abandon traditional formats and delve into the highly experimental and nonsensical.  The pure unfiltered artistic contents of their mind pour out onto each page, appearing as a cavalcade of creatures and chaos instead of any sort of sensical classic comic.

Because of the unique nature of L’artiste’s source of power – raw artistic inspiration, unfiltered by any inconveniences like sense and reason – expect random update days and even more random update styles.  Some days, you may get a detailed sketch of something intricate and complex, others you might get a 3-dimensional reconstruction of the house that L’artiste grew up in made entirely of Eggos, others still might simply contain a napkin left over from Chipolte with the word “ART”, along with some vaguely Mythos-esque symbols,  written in what appears to be the blood of a virgin.  And that’s on a good day.

#4 – The Female Webcomic Artist Lady

| November 22, 2010 | 0 Comments

The Apple of Discord originally featured a single crazy, incompetent, bombastic webcomic author/artist who served not only as the “Voice” of AoD, but also as a cautionary tale to anybody else who might follow in his footsteps.  Since he eventually came to realize his own inadequacies and confronted his own inner demons, and has now fled the webcomic scape to try and make a dent elsewhere.

In his wake, The Apple of Discord has been taken over by his Apprentice, aided by an Artist that our lone creator hired some time back to ‘class the place up’.  But in the subsequent power vacuum, more and more creative types have begun emerging, each trying to take the helm – and the power – behind the mythical Apple of Discord.

The “The Female Webcomic Artist Lady” is… first and foremost… female, an attribute that sets her apart from all the other contenders so far.  As one of the few openly female denizens of the web that aren’t secretly 40-year-old plumbers posing as teenage girls, she has had to harden herself against the arrows (and other phallic objects) thrust at her kind by an uncaring, unlearning, and unevolving gestalt entity of teenage boys.

The long-term effects of this constant exposure to the internet has left her more than a little jaded, but has honed her senses to a point that you could fit through the eye of a needle.  When backed into a corner, she’s not above cheating, nor is she better than base manipulation and “female voodoo mind control”.  Inside she secretly wishes to be more girly, to romp in fields with flowers and unicorns, however is afraid that feeling these feelings will cause her to appear to be weak, and therefore easy prey, so she locks them away in a small cage and hides their existence from all but the closest and most trusted of prying eyes.

Can draw yaoi upon request.  Will draw blood upon stupid request.

#3 – The Lancer of Luck

| November 9, 2010 | 0 Comments

The Lancer is a counterpoint to my already-established character, The Archer of Discord.  While The Archer serves (to an extent, at any rate) the powers of Discord and Eris, The Lancer is similarly bound to the personification of Luck, often known only as “The Lady”.

Once a talented jouster who served in world-wide competitions representing the human kingdom of Redshirtia in the elven realm of Avalon Vale, The Lancer was considered to be undefeatable by most opponents.  He fought, in jousts, all takers of all races, sized, and experience levels, defeating kings and goblins and time-travelling robots from the future with the same degree of capacity and restraint.

The Lancer was bound by honor and duty, and served the code of the knight (without technically being a knight) and also fought in real battles, often to improve his skill in official jousting.  Legend has it that once he managed to stack up three enemies on his nearly indestructible alloy lance, and would have had more but further foes kept falling off the end.

His undefeated streak ended at the same moment his fealty to Luck began.  In keeping with his vow to take any challengers, he accepted a gauntlet across the face from a large and burly knight from a nearby kingdom who he had defeated previously and did not consider to be a serious threat.  During the joust, a small girl in the crowd accidentally let go of a cat; the cat pounced at a mouse, which scurried up a woman’s skirt, causing the woman to panic, throwing her mug of ale into the air, landing in a coop full of chickens, sending them into a flury, causing the one chicken still amongst them capable of flight to launch from the cage and nearly claw the Lancer’s eye out.  He was then defeated by the other knight.

After the joust ended, considering the events, he realized that it was not truly the knight who had defeated him – it was luck.  Bad luck.  Upon finding the girl who had released the cat and confronting her, she transformed before his eyes into The Lady, confirming his suspicions, and at that moment he pledged to serve her until he was defeated again.

#2 – Unit 404

| November 4, 2010 | 2 Comments

There’s really no easy way to put this – Unit 404 is perhaps a little insane.  It might have been that last upgrade, or the time his inventor tried to install Linux on him.  It could be that, in an effort to save costs, instead of licensing Asimov’s 3 Rules of Robotics his creator used a shareware copy of “13 General Suggestions of Robotics”.  It could just be that he was never really right from the start menu.

See, Unit 404 was designed to recycle wasted fluids, and additionally was created to use the materials he is recycling for fuel to keep him going.  Unfortunately, somewhere along the way, he determined that humans waste an awful lot of blood.  I’m not 100% sure how a vampire robot would work, but that’s not about to stop Unit 404 from getting his drink on.

#1 – The White Mask

| November 2, 2010 | 1 Comment

In a world wrapped in darkness and fear, the only thing worse than the ebony touch of night is that of The White Mask.  Glowing softly, as if bathed in moonlight, his form is merely the tip of a much worse entity protruding into this world from somewhere far worse.

30 Characters Challenger: Adam J. Smithee

| October 30, 2010 | 1 Comment

These “who am I” posts seem to be all the rage, so I figure I might as well throw my biography upon the sacrificial pyre.  My name is Adam, and I am a webcomic author and artist, humorist, inventor, and geek.  I run the occasionally-controversial The Apple of Discord as well as an ongoing story comic called Apple Valley.  After a few failed comics back in the early 2000s, I rediscovered my webcomic aspirations in 2008 with AoD and have never looked back.  In addition to my own comics, I also occasionally frequent conventions, speaking about webcomics and Giant Robots.

Fun Related Fact – I really like giant robots.  Like, an unhealthy amount.  I have several hundred, and am a walking, talking database of anything coming out of Japan with rocket fists and laser eyes since the 1970s.  At a recent convention, I was supposed to be performing my “A Brief History of Giant Robots” panel on Sunday… but I wound up hijacking an abandoned Giant Robot panel Saturday night (the guy doing it never showed) and doing a nearly two-hour long imprompteau “comedy” version of the panel to a standing ovation.

Back to the fact sheet – I got into webcomics as a break from novel-writing, as a release for my neverending fountain of creative impulses, and to help loosen up my right hand, which has a double whammy of a badly broken wrist in my youth AND early onset rheumatoid arthritis (I’m only 31).  Due to my physical constraints (that, and the fact that I have had almost zero actual art training in my life) my work tends to fall more on the simplistic side, featuring strong, smooth, and bold lines and bright balanced colors. 

My weapons of choice are the Wacom Bamboo Fun Medium and Paint Tool SAI.  I also build things (like my buddy “Hal Servo”, a fully working custom puppet designed off of Tom Servo from MST3K), though I’m not sure if that skill is going to actually be useful in this contest.  I may surprise you.  Heck, I may surprise me.

A lot of my more popular work is parody-driven and derivative (and cynical and offensive and dark and disturbing and…), but I really enjoy creating and working with my own ideas so I’m looking forward to this chance to open up the flood gates and be as wonderful or horrible as the muse takes me.