Worthwhile Webcomics--Melonpool, by Steve Loop

Mama Fisi
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My attention was recently brought to a webcomic that's been running for quite a number of years now. The Adventures of Mayberry Melonpool started in April of 1996 and initially ran seven days a week, but seems to have parked itself sometime in 2012.


In one of the more recent cartoons, the cartoonist bemoans the fact that he just can't find that much to be funny about anymore, because Facebook has been stealing all his best gags. Still, there's a huge amount of archived material to get through, but it's a light and amusing effort that won't overly tax your brain cells or your credibility.

As the comic's own tagline says: Star Trek Meets Gilligan's Island. Nuff said.

The story involves a crew of alien life forms aboard a space cruiser that just happens to be shaped like a duck. After sustaining damage to its unique engine system (its motive power is an overgrown hamster with an enormous appetite, running on a wheel) and crashing on Earth, the crew--composed of good-natured Mayberry, irritable Ralph, Sam the telepathic dog, and that giant, insatiable hamster (also named Sam) try to fit in and remain unnoticed as they attempt to repair their ship.


Some of the humor is hilarious. The drawing style is simple, and over the life of the strip, unfortunately starts to go downhill. The update schedule also falls apart, a fact the cartoonist, Steve Loop, pokes fun at. Actually, he pokes fun at a lot of things, primarily in the sci-fi genre. Oh, and Steve himself is one of the incidental characters.

It's interesting to note that Steve was trying to make Melonpool into a puppet movie. I'm not really sure how that worked out. It seems that they're still in "pre-production" phase, with a Kickstarter campaign to fund the movie.

I'm still working my way through the archive, but it's definitely worth a look. It's mostly fun and inoffensive and you can pretty much drop in anywhere and quickly get a jist of what's going on.