Webcomic Wednesday: Faraday the Blob

Reviewed by Seán Donnelly

Created by Alan Ryan

Certain stories have titles that intrigue or entice the reader, be they evocative, ambiguous or just plain weird. Faraday the Blob is firmly in the latter category; it’s exactly as it sounds. As webcomics go it’s a stalwart affair, having started more than a decade ago (its website lists it as starting in 2004) and continuing in a haphazard fashion until just last year, with no signs of stopping. The comic itself is a playful, surreal gag strip (that is by no means intended for kids) starring the titular Faraday the Blob, as well as his friends such as Mr. Elf and Bunzo. All three usually wind up as unwilling participants to whatever insanity that Dublin-based writer and artist Alan Ryan has in store for his characters, as well as his audience.

Faraday’s uncomplicated design makes him host for a gallery’s worth of freakish expressions and transformations, all done in service to the comic’s commitment to wringing the most laughs out of its audience, something that it is very good at doing. The wild takes and detail in some of the comic’s more bizarre moments go hand in hand with this and allow jokes to land with the impact that they do.

Strips will typically take a well-known premise or gag and subvert it or extend it to its naturally horrifying conclusion. The comic’s cartoony style and colourful, energetic exterior (reminiscent of children’s magazines such as The Beano and The Dandy) hide a very smart, discerning work that will guarantee at least one laugh every issue.