Anders <3s Maria

Mar 6, 2008 • Karen

I don't believe I've blogged about Anders Loves Maria before. Shame, that. I started reading it after Sam and Fuzzy linked it, and it's pretty much been my new obsession since. For a number of reasons, I think.

First, it's Swedish. Scandinavia represent! Most of the comic is in English, but some of the flashbacks, strip titles, background art, and sound effects are in Swedish. Fun stuff!

Second, the art's cartoony and simple--yet completely fantastic. The author manages to spit out another page every day--even though the comic isn't her full-time job (I think). My other obsession, on the other hand, is now full-time and yet still pretty much updates once in a blue moon. Yes, artistically the comparison is a little unfair. Still.

Third, this is the only webcomic I read regularly that falls intentionally in the genre of drama. Lots of popular comics turn into dramas and/or succumb to "thick cords of despicable continuity" as time goes on, but they at least started as gag-a-day comics and still seek to make you laugh at the end of each page regardless of what else is going on. Anders Loves Maria doesn't. So far as I can tell, the comic has been intended as a lovely, bittersweet soap opera from the very beginning. And it does it so very, very well. The character development is amazing--all of the characters (I think) are sympathetic and you really do want to yell at/strangle the characters when they do stupid things, as if they were real people. Just look at all the comments people leave with each strip! Some of the pages, they're just heartbreaking...

That said, since it isn't gag-a-day, it's really not a comic you can just jump into. I highly recommend reading through the archives, starting with the first strip. Go for it. The archive isn't that long, yet.

(Obligatory warnings: The characters are Europeans; there's a good lot of (cartoon) nudity and sex. You probably don't want to read it at work.)