Delayed Reaction

Well as you can see it’s still style experimentation. Another of the things I’m trying to get out of this is greater accuracy in construction for the faces; I always had a problem with the initial way that I drew them in that they only really looked correct in their usual 3/4th perspective. Also, there were a lot of fluxuations in my old style, leading to messiness especially when I had to rush it.

I don’t want to lose the range of expression though. I was thinking because yesterday the faces were oblique/contorted it was difficult to realize what the actual changes were, beyond the angles that I could attain. That said, not looking at my references while drawing led me to cartoonify it a bit more than it was yesterday.

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Discussion (73) ¬

  1. DZ

    I’m digging the new style.

    • Moonwing

      yea, i gotta say i like the new style too. it’s making the facial expressions more expressed. i also always thought the expressions were amazing and now here we get to have more expessions ^.^

      • Chiry

        Cuteness gets an upgrade!

    • BREE

      I have been looking and dont like the new style. They seem off , more pronounced hands and skinny upper arm. Faces look off and way to young like there a babyish look. Went back and forth and just wish go back to the orginal style as it , to me , is better. Theres more but not sure what but somthing bothers me and its not for the better.

      • ac

        i dont like the new style

  2. BlueAnubis

    Aww, Peanut looks so cute. also, I wonder what problem Bino had?
    It is also is easier to see the differances in the styles in this strip. Fun times. 8D

  3. Odos

    Oh… AH! Much better, I see it now… again, needed to see more of the stile before I outright said “No,” because, well, obviously, I like it now =P… You were right, it was just the weird angles.

  4. Shoji

    I love it even more, haha XD They’re so cute, and I actually am liking the detail of your backgrounds

  5. Fenrari

    I swear Peanut looks younger with the new style.

  6. D.M.Wolf

    ee hehe! now this i like <3 nice blend of your origonal cartoony and “regular” style from monday. i’d have to see a grape drawn in this style to be 100% but it definantly fits better. i’ll vote for this one

  7. lopiko

    i’m really impresed with this particular style, i like it much more than the style of the previous strip, it has the perfect balance between cartoon-ish and realistic look.
    i didn’t like the previous strip’s style that much, it kinda didn’t look like the style of the references you posted on FA, but this new try is absolutely good-looking!

  8. tofu

    ok MUCH better than monday’s style. * sigh of relief*
    can shock collars not come off or something?

  9. Fuzzypaws

    Bino’s cute when he’s upset. Which is most of the time ^^;

  10. Severedevil

    The new style is even better than the old style! Whoo!

    All the better with which to ship Peanut and Grape.

  11. matus

    well, it’s awesome …
    only thing that suprised me is lack of fancy colors in the backround
    (but that last thing i would care about)

  12. Junker

    The new style is starting to grow on me. *thumbs-up*

  13. StainedSword

    This is a lot better then Monday’s though I’m still not sure if I’m on board with it… I might take awhile to adjust or whatever.

    Ohhhh, I think that Spo is going to get the remote and make Bino work for him – OR ELSE!!!!

    Silly plot prediction? Check.

    • Odos

      plot predictions you say? well…

      I think peanut is going to run to grape and wake her up (as always.) Explain that it’s Bino’s shock coller remote, she gets Ideas to use him to do her bidding, but peanut gives his dog eyes, in which she just hides it. After hiding it in a secure location, they think they’re all cool untill people start just ACCIDENTALLY hitting the button. At which point, peanut and grape go on to find the remote… Now, this could split two ways, either A: Peanut and Grapes parents find it before them (just, kinda, hey looky here) and give it back to Bino’s parents and that’s it. OR B: What you said, someone finds it and uses it to make Bino do what they want… much to the chagrin of grape, who probably says “HEY! That was MY Idea!”

      Well… it’s just a wacky prediction =P

  14. Larc

    I have to say the new style is quite awesome, keep goin’ with it :D

  15. Valerio

    This new style keeps looking *adorable*
    BTW: yes, there’s something so wrong with shock collars, especially on creatures supposed to have a human-level intellect and able to fully interact with their humans. Sorry, chief, but this is bad juju :(

  16. ForeverFreakedd

    Okay~ I think this will work out wonderfully. ^ ^b I’ll just be hoping it sticks.
    Still your choice, as always, though. :D

  17. Yokel

    See? Told you all it’d work. Awesome.

  18. Keyblade0101

    I really like how Peanut looks now. : D

  19. Lucas H.C.

    Me like!
    =3

  20. Parry

    Okay, I’m still going to say this is creepy. His “dad” put a shock collar on him now? O_o He’s a “dog” that’s as intelligent as most teenage kids, and to curb behaviour problems he gets electrocuted… uh-huh…

    Okay… so, who here would put a shock collar on their 12-year-old kid to correct behavioural issues?..

    • Parry

      And yeah, yeah, I know “it’s just a comic about pets,” and the only reason they talk and what-not in the story is for the humour and such, but… still… You know, to enjoy fiction you have to suspend my disbelief… and suspending disbelief in a world where you use shock collars on pets that, for all intents and purposes, are basically children, makes me a bit queasy… Also, lots of fictional stories obviously have bad things happen to characters, but in this case we’re not really invited, as the audience, to see it as a “bad” thing… More like a funny thing, or, you know, at worst, throw in a “haha, poor Bino, wonder what he did” sort of comment… Unless Bino’s owner/”dad” along with whoever makes those shock collars is about to become the comic strip’s first real villain or something… But I somehow doubt that.

      • Indagare

        Well, as Falcon the Fox pointed out there has been much use of slapstick comedy over the years. Take a look at any Tom and Jerry cartoon and you will see violence of all sorts. Though I agree in principle that shock collars are not a nice way to deal with things in real life, this is a more cartoony world. We’ve already seen Grape kill and eat another character, as sentient as herself, and there was not much protest. People are being oversensitive to this.

    • falconthefox

      But….it’s OK for them to hit each other with a frying pan or to eat other intelligent creatures?
      Physical “slapstick” style humor is and has been a staple for all forms of media for a long time.

      • Parry

        Well when Grape hits someone with a frying pan, that’s just Grape being Grape. In this case we have Bino’s owner putting a shock collar on him; it’s not one of Bino’s peers getting in a fight with him, it’s the person he thinks of as his “dad,” who has authority over him doing it. Also, Grape intended to hurt Bino, and it was clear that it was a conflict between two characters. Here, the shock collar is shown not as something one character uses to “fight” another, but a perfectly acceptable way for Bino’s “dad” to curb whatever behaviour problem Bino was having; something Bino’s owner has every right to do (as opposed to just another pet hitting him in a fight or something).

        As for the one with the mouse, yeah, I didn’t like that one much either… Another character was being annoying, ergo he should die horribly and we will laugh at it. 6_6 But at least in that case you could say it was just Grape doing what cats do; for all we know other characters wouldn’t have approved of it either. Here we have Bino’s human owner, his “dad,” using cruelty to “train” him, and it’s presented as something perfectly acceptable to everyone around.

        So yeah, it’s just slapstick and whatever, I know most people don’t agree with me. I’m just expressing the way I feel about this comic. For me, slapstick can be “two characters got in a fight, and one of them got hurt in some amusing way,” or it can be “one character is in a position of authority over another, and uses this authority to abuse the latter in an obviously immoral way, but everyone treats it as perfectly acceptable.” The former is just slapstick, the latter makes me queasy. Just how I feel.

        • Parry

          Also this reminds me of that time that a bunch of comics about all the cats having a catnip party or whatever weren’t posted, because Mr. Griffin wanted to keep the comic kid-friendly and didn’t want to draw parallels to real-life parties where people use drugs, if I remember correctly. So, obviously even the author doesn’t accept that humour and “it’s just a comic” is an excuse for showing any and all kinds of stuff happening and being treated as “okay” with all the characters. I’m sure Mr. Griffin wouldn’t put up, say, a comic in which Bino is walking around with a broken arm, and someone asks him why it happened, and he’d say, “Oh, my owner just wanted to teach me a lesson because I did something wrong, so he knocked me around a bit” and every other character would say, “ah, oh well, poor Bino. No big deal though.” But hey, that would just be slapstick too, right? It would, and the same excuses could be used in that case as in this one. Yet, I’m sure no such comic would be posted because it would cross a certain line that the author wouldn’t want to cross. I guess my line — as a member of the audience — is just a bit closer than that, that’s all.

          • falconfox01

            well said sir!
            I’m sure that there are other strips in the series that made some people a bit queasy too…for example the fith panel of :
            http://www.housepetscomic.com/2008/12/25/housepets-christmas-edition/

            made me feel uneasy too.
            I can see the humor in Bino getting zapped by a shock collar but yes in a “real world” situation it would be both immoral and unjustifiable. In comics, just as in TV we sometimes must suspend reality in favor of the sillyness of the situation. perhaps my own “line” is a bit further off than yours.
            I also agree with you on the new style, very sweet!

          • Parry

            ^_^

          • R-One

            (Sorry for the enormous post in advance)…

            I think you’re reading a bit too much into it. At this time, the shock collar gag is just slapstick – were the plot to evolve into the remote being used to control Bino (as someone predicted elsewhere), that’d cross the fine line, but as long as it remains silly like it currently is, it’s clean.

            Slapstick does walk a fine line in terms of humor – a broken arm “can” be funny, but it has to be done in proper context – and kudos to anyone who can pull that one off, or anything remotely similar, while keeping it amusing. But compared to Looney Toons (which has been banned from most TV stations, or so I’ve heard, in recent years) or Tom and Jerry, or even a large number of cruder, “modern” cartoons, the violence against the characters here in Housepets is nill. Examples: There’s a Tom and Jerry “Mousketers” episode where they use a shot of the guillotine, then the sound effect for it after it’s off camera, followed by the little grey mouse (forget the name, but he’s the only one that talks out of the three) saying “Poor pussycat.” – IE, Tom got executed. Way more violent than anything here. And I dare anyone to watch every Tom and Jerry episode, and count how many times Tom gets hurt – you’ll loose track, trust me. There’s also a Loony Toons Episode (an old one) where Tweety Bird blows a cat (not Sylvester) up, then comments on the poor cat going boom – and marks a tally off on the side of the tree saying they go thru an awful lot of cats. Morbid? Out of context, yes. In context, it was amusing, however – the whole episode built up to that moment.

            Grape’s eating a mouse was along those lines, but the way it was done made it amusing rather than sick. The points in it’s favor are that A: Cats eat mice, and B: Her prior dialogue leading up to this action. But the prior panels had set the stage for that moment to MAKE it amusing – had she just gone and offed him at the start, it’d be morbid at best (at worst, the catnip gag would look tame in comparison). But it didn’t, for the very reasons I stated. It made a play on what’s accepted norms to us, and used dialogue to set the stage for it. In context, it’s funny. Remove it from context, and keep, oh, maybe the panel where she stomps the little guy and on, and it’s very morbid. Grape’s use of a frying pan in a later strip is similar – in context, with Bino ranting and raving, it’s a funny way to shut him up – doubly so when the other pets confess they had similar ideas later. Out of context, it’s shocking, and not in a good way.

            What I’m trying to say here is that Slapstick comedy relies a lot on context for it’s humor value – take it out of context, or apply it to a real situation, and and humor to be derived from it vanishes. In context, however, it’s quite often amusing – some gags do fall on their face, as has happened even here before, but the majority of them remain funny so long as they remain detached from reality in some way. There have been actual studies done into why people find this kind of humor amusing, but I’d be writing a full article here if I got into that, and it’d take too much space – something more fitting for a blog than a comment/reply.

            The shock-collar gag will remain funny so long as it continues to remain silly, and avoid anything overly serious. It plays off accepted norms for pets. While the characters in Housepets! are a lot smarter than your average cat or dog, they’re still pets. Another webcomic, Dandy&Company, has made plays off the intelligent-pets theme for a while now (not to mention it’s used slapstick comedy to no end), and Housepets! will make similar parallels and gags too – the catnip joke was the first attempt, and the shock collar gag is a fresh approach to the same theme – they’re pets, but they’re intelligent pets. I’m sure there will be more jokes along these lines in the future as well.

        • Trefoiler

          Just a nitpicking for Parry:

          In the case of Grape “Periwinkle” Sandwich, whom we’ve established is an opinionated, sarcastic, yet strangely calm cat whose relative intelligence places her in a deep metaphorical smog of idiocy, much of her humorous output is produced from abusing the other characters in a myriad of ways. Her patience appears tested with every interaction (as sampled and addressed in the Yarn Ball arc, as it started on December 12th), but instead of going mad, she vents, healthily, in small increments.

          Let’s not forget the function she applies to them, either. When Bino became hysterical during his brother’s party, Grape recognized the futility of diplomacy and anesthetized him with the nearest convenient instrument: a greasy frying pan. When the neighborhood dogs were pursuing Grape for her blaspheming of The Game, having to cut down a tree in the process, she jumped away and turned it into a learning experience by pointing out the physics that caused it to land on them.

          Even with the loose usage of ’slapstick’ to reinforce it, the majority of, if not the entirety of Housepets! is good humored and light-hearted. After every infraction, every injury, the characters essentially return to their old ways with all their body parts intact.

          Do they give thanks for their good fortune? Rarely.

          Do they learn a valuable lesson? As long as you possess a loose definition of ‘valuable’…

          Do they adjust their views and open their minds? Pfft, no.

          Do they make us smile and steal our hearts in the meantime? Yes- or at least that’s what keeps bringing ME back.

          Sure, Housepets! is imperfect. But rather than throw some percentages at you guys, I’ll just say I like it. S’good.

          We will now break for a brief intermission. Bathrooms are located on either side of…

    • Parry

      Also, I like the new style. ^_^’

      • wierdsnake

        you seem to have a lot to say. and bino got OWND!

      • Taay

        yeah. i like it more than the previous strips style (monday)

  21. Avewy

    Another vote for “Lovin’ the new style”.

  22. Jadeclaw

    I add my vote for the new style. Keep it, it looks great.

  23. NickCole

    Peanut’s face has ‘cuteness’ written ALL over it! :D I love how you modified the new style and make it show the expressions more~

  24. james319

    i like the new style but i still kinda miss the old one,but yeah this one could be better than the other :D

  25. Kurast

    Ditto…

  26. Sessile

    This is awesome! I think Bino is probably my 2nd favorite character in the whole comic, after Max.

  27. reaperslayer

    ^^ i think they is cute and it is…. THE BEST COMIC EVAH

  28. Hobbes

    This is much nicer ^_^ you even used my suggestion about seeing through the mouths. This is much better than yesterdays and I say its a good style. Its much more detailed. Now my final verdict will be said when I see some cats and humans (like it really matters, right. I mean its all up to you to do the style you like better. this is just a reader’s opinion and most likely the reader won’t stop reading it b/c of the change of style unless they’re real douches; in that case, good riddance, lol)

  29. tahrey

    also digging it. got just as much a range of expression for one thing … bino actually looks a bit scary in the first two frames but softens up so much in no4 :D it’s not quite as cutesy as before, but it still works ok.

    though if lots of people start complaining its not as cute any more you may have to go back hehe.
    as i said before, well worth giving it a chance. really i like them equally but if you need to change it and grow, nothing should stop you

  30. R-One

    Liking this one a lot more than Monday’s strip – the faces don’t seem quite as awkward this time as they did in the previous one, and the way Bino’s eyes help to show expression seems like a nice hybrid of both styles (regardless of if it was planned or not, it looks a lot better than just relying on the eyebrows angle for expression). Peanut seems almost child-like (puppy-like?) in appearance now, but I suppose that could be exploited for further plot and gags later on.

    As for the strip itself – Bino must be really irked to not realize Peanut was describing the remote at first, but I guess getting constant electric shocks would do that, lol.

  31. gsoft

    Very good, Peanut looks a lot, lot better now.

  32. TomFox

    I hate to be that guy, but how does Peanut know what the color of the remote is while also being a colorblind dog. Love the new styles :)

  33. Insignificance

    Love this one here.

  34. Clovis

    id’ just like to add yet another voice asking you to keep the new style! :)

  35. Sara

    I like all the styles you use in this comic. xP
    They’re all cute!

  36. Goleus

    私のように、これのための実質様式を有し、私は物語を喜ぶ維持する速い更新を愛する

    Babelfish couldn’t of said it in better words…
    anyways goodstyle, keep it up, I like it, I think you have real potential.
    You should make one very progressive and long story. more or so somehing that affects the whole comic dramatically.

  37. microbuss

    LMAO good one he gonna have fun now!! good comic love it LOVE IT!!

  38. Crystal

    Bad penut. But I can’t blame him for not knowing that it was for a shock caler (sp)

  39. Phase

    I choose the new style over the old one, the noses always seemed off in the old style.

  40. Miles Rose

    This style is seeming better. I had mixed feelings about the new style until I saw this one :3

  41. Oblivion

    Better then the last comic. I think I could get used to this!

  42. Kaloyan

    I’m still unsure… It looks better than the last comic, but seeing Peanut this way will need some getting use to. Perhaps it was just the odd angles that threw me off at first…. But I can’t say for sure.

  43. Y10

    I love this new style

  44. Frostgrip

    The new style’s an upgrade for sure, it’s more rounded and leaning towards realistic than the slightly more boxy version, but not to say it’s bad or anything. Either work for me, both styles are great.

  45. CutmanX

    It Looks Great, Best yet

  46. Khan-Wolfen

    i enjoy the new style, miss the old one but i am rather neturel to whatever yea pick so go with whatever, still good comic ^^

  47. Trefoiler

    I like the old style.

    But I love this one.

    And I was going to suggest, upon the previous strip, at least two things Rick could do with his alternate styles: Rick, if you were to choose this style to continue the strip, you could still use the original for Peanut’s drawings. I mean, we’ve seen his work. It’s very distinctive.

    OR, if you kept the original style, you could reserve styles such as this for the The Housepets Graphic Novel! and subsequent prequels and/or sequels and/or branch-offs if you ever make them. A bit like how a cartoon series will completely change in style on the advent of a feature film. A cliché like that just makes me giddy, and the promotions would be entertainment enough…

    In a time where all of Earth is threatened by a hostile race from beyond our solar system…

    where the most powerful of weapons are useless…

    there will be one brave group of animals…

    one eclectic community…

    one neighborhood… to save us all.

    “WHAT THE–”
    “Hi I’m Daisy!” *BOOM*

    –Housepets! The Movie–

    Cuteness Gets an Upgrade

    …damn American television… in my brains…

    • Trefoiler

      I should note that that was much more provocatively formatted before I submitted.

      Bad code. Bad.

    • Sara

      That was a epic comment right thur.

      • Trefoiler

        Why, thank you.

        And you may thank Chiry for the tag line. It was too perfect not to use.

  48. FF

    Yeah. *Nods* I like the new style. Seems…Crisper, somehow. Can’t put my finger on it cause I’m not an artist. XD

  49. Goleus

    To the people saying, “HOW IMMORAL”. It’s a Web Comic. Not a Reality show/etc. I think the only one that got to me was *can’t remember her name* and her dad, somewhat sad :<.

    It’s sort of like watching ***** ***** or some old and great web Toon/Comic and saying “Oh man is that horrid, just look joes head EXPLODED” Seriously guys. Stop complaining, learn to grab a sense of humor.

  50. wierdsnake

    you should keep the dog like this but not the cats

  51. S0d

    the new style all the way

  52. PeterCat

    I like the old style — when I first saw it, I felt it was unusual but distinctive, and somehow compelling. A different look that no one else had.

    The new style is interesting too, in a different way. If you stick with it I’ll miss the old style, but the new style has its own potential that’s worth exploring and refining.

    Ultimately of course, you should ignore what us mere readers think, and go with what you feel is most comfortable for you as an artist.

  53. Mandy

    I’m in the process of re-doing my entire webcomic because my art style changed so drastically… I know it can be really taxing to try to continue drawing in an “old” style when your “new” style feels so much more natural or simply looks better to your eyes.

    My advice is do what you actually enjoy drawing. There are still people telling me they liked the old style so much better, and yet, especially for an unpaid comic online, what matters most is whether or not you LIKE drawing in the style you use. Regardless of the style, the comic will be at it’s best when you’re actually engaged with it and enjoying what you do.

    Personally, I like both, though I like the new one a bit better.