« On top of it all, my eyes hurt. From behind. I don't know what that means. | Main | A rather focused correction »

And yet, there has been no Pirate/Robot fighting. Go fig.

(From Goats! Click on the thumbnail for full sized ninjas!)

There are certain cliches in webcomics. They extend to the newspaper sometimes, but in the webcomics, they absolutely flourish. Among these cliches are:

  • Monkeys
  • Ninjas
  • Pirates
  • Robots
  • Cleavage

Granted, these cliches are actually geek cliches -- to the point that Atomic Sock Monkey Press has a Monkey, Ninja, Pirate, Robot Game, a deluxe version of the game, and a Role Playing Game on the natural war between monkeys, ninjas, pirates and robots. (Now, if Chad produces a version of the game called Monkey, Ninja, Pirate, Robot, Cleavage he'd have himself a top seller...)

Several websites and webcomics have been playing on a subsection of this war -- namely, the war between pirates and ninjas. I assume PvP was the first, though I could be wrong. At the same time, James Kochalka has been focusing on the other half of the war, in his book Monkey vs. Robot and the sequels. And many, many people have touched on the power of cleavage in these wars:Diesel Sweeties and Gaming Guardians conflate Cleavage and Robots; many folks, PvP's cosplay among them, touch on Cleavage and Pirates; at the very least, Planet Earth (and other tourist traps) touches on Cleavage and Ninjas... okay, I have no ready examples of Cleavage and monkeys right now -- but having said that, I give folks until the end of the week, at which time I will have to scour the image from my mi--

FRANK CHO! Frank Cho identifies himself as a monkey and is obsessed with cleavage! You don't have to do it now! Don't do it now! I beg you!

Anyway -- the point is, everyone does these things. Everyone. We've seen it a million times. It's. Been. Done.

And yet, I look at today's Goats and giggle. I giggle as much as I did back in the day when The Tick walked by Ninjas pretending to be a Hedge, back when I was in college and half of you weren't yet born. Christ, I'm getting old.;

Sometimes, cliches are cliches because they remain funny. Robots? Funny. Pirates? Funny. Monkeys? Funny. Ninjas? Clearly funny.

Cleavage? Always funny.

A nod of the head to M. Rosenberg. Because Ninjas are funny.


TrackBack URL for this entry:


Zombies. Where are the zombies?
I get so tired of this necro-prejudice.

Yeah, zombies are the new pirates, just like pirates are the new monkeys.

These obsessions extend even to the artsy-fartsy end of the geek hierarchy. McSweeney's journal (perhaps best known as one of the projects of literary wunderkind Dave Eggers, and as the publisher of a recent critically-acclaimed Chris Ware-edited anthology of major alt-comics talent) runs a pirate supply store up the street from my apartment. You can buy flags, frilly shirts, and glass eyes.

mckenzee -- yeah, zombies should also be on that list, clearly. Hell, in City of Heroes, you can fight zombies (two different kinds), ninjas, robots, and alien monkeys. And all kinds of cleavage. (No pirates, but give them time. Or, you can make yourself a pirate!)

Shaenon -- pirates are a metaphor, you see. A metaphor for alienation and youthful rebellion. With peg legs, and bodices, and rum.

Also? Parrots.

This game makes me all happy inside. :D

I always thought the best part of the Pirate Store is that you can buy lard by the handful.

I know the ninjas vs. pirates thing goes farther back than PVP. I thought it started with a pirate-themed parody of the Real Ultimate Power page, but it might go even farther back still.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)