The Secret Report
|here in the "Reactions" section.|
|Original review author:||Long Tom|
|Webcomic name:||The Secret Report|
|Author:||"Darkhog", real name D. G. Jagielski|
|Start Date:||August 23, 2021 at 1:00.|
|Genre:||Science fiction with humans and dragons from outer space.|
|Defining Flaw:||Bad art, hokey storyline, what might have been an intriguing idea ends up being ridiculous and boring.|
Over a year has passed and the artwork has marginally improved from the awfulness of when it first started out. But, like 21st Century Fox, it went from hideous to merely bad, and I doubt it will get much better so one star will be generous enough.
The basic idea of a secret world of dragons beneath a supposedly ordinary place on Earth might have been intriguing. But this idea is carried out in a hokey manner as explained below.
Two men buy a house together, but we learn nothing about them other than one is supposed to be Irish.
|Miscellaneous Details:||[no stars given]
The author is actually asking people to send him money. I cannot possibly imagine why anyone would do so.
This webcomic has gone from atrocious to merely bad, and while it is possible it might get better, I would not bet the proverbial farm on it.
I already reviewed another horribly drawn webcomic, namely Wormcurse. But in this webcomic, both art and writing suck equally.
UPDATE: I did recheck this webcomic and, to be fair, unlike Wormcurse, this author at least made a real attempt to make his webcomic better.
This thing always sucked.
Story and Plot
Two young males buy a tiny house on a huge lot for $80,000 (Which currency?) Unsurprisingly, it is very messy inside, and they clean it up. They actually do a wonderful job of it, all in one day! (Can I hire them to do mine?) Then Will, the taller long-haired man does work on his computer, while Jake, the short orange-haired man, goes to bed, but cannot sleep peacefully. Uh-oh, Will had the same experience, and it turns out the city sold them the property because all the previous owners had left there after hearing the same noises that bothered our heroes.
Let's take a pause. Presumably they bought the house as both a residence and a workplace. Why would they spend so much on their own house rather than, say, renting an apartment or buying a condominium? And who provided the funds? What are their ages, backgrounds, relationship to one another besides coworkers? Certainly we should know these details since these two people made such a big investment together.
The two play frisbee (I assume), and then Jake has an accident. Jake is okay, but they have to look for their "flywheel" (is this Australia?) in the forested part of their property. Doing so, they make another find. Namely a locked door leading into a tunnel. Jake goes inside and enters a room with a red dragon inside, and Will goes in after him. Will does not freak out like Jake did, and the red dragon assures them that he will not harm them. In fact, the dragon leads our heroes into an elevator. Unfortunately Jake elects to sabotage it, bringing trouble to everybody. Fortunately the trouble is not so serious after all, to the relief of the dragon, whose name is Irioth. Irioth leaves our heroes to explore the dragon city, and Will trusts the dragons while Jake remains pessimistic.
Another dragon named Lemmy arrives and sends our heroes into an ice cream parlor. Our heroes have no money, but they do not need it to get ice cream. Also, the other dragons are being kept away from our heroes to avoid panicking them. Oh, and the dragons are very old beings. Leaving the parlor, Jake notes the huge size of the city-obviously covering a bigger area than their property. Will notes that the dragon society has no poverty or hunger. They both find a hot dog stand and Will asks the proprietor how this society can possibly work. The proprietor talks about how dragon society used to work, and how it is very much different now. Jake becomes impressed by this wonderful dragon society, but they both realize they are entirely at the mercy of the dragons.
They again meet Irioth, and this time he has them enter a building where they wind up meeting another dragon who tells them about how a spaceship of dragons found Earth.
UPDATE: The dragon's telling the story of their community and its interaction with humanity is still going on after a number of months. Hardly exciting or even entertaining.
There have been a number of webcomics reviewed here which had bad art, but this webcomic starts out on the level of Wormcurse and One Frame Gags, the worst of the worst:
Some of the initially badly drawn webcomics would improve visually later on, either with practice or else the webcomic author hiring someone else to do the artwork, but I don't think this will happen here.
This art isn't just badly done. It alternates between black and white and color, and characters are drawn very crudely and inconsistently with absolutely no sense of proportion or motion or proper positioning.
UPDATE: I decided to recheck the webcomic to see if anything has changed. It has, a little:
Now all strips are in color and the color shading has gotten more complex. Other than that no real improvement.
The story is about two people who buy an unwanted house with a huge lot, evidently to use as a home and as a remote workplace. All we learn about them is that Jake is supposed to be Irish, and what significance is that to the story is questionable, since he doesn't do anything even stereotypically "Irish" such as go boozing or fighting or dancing jigs, and we learn nothing about Will other than he is evidently the straight man counterpart to Jake. And what relationship do these two have to one another? Did they combine their funds and buy the house together or what? This scenario is not making much sense.
But it gets worse. The property is atop some easily accessed secret dragon world...and nobody seems to have discovered it before our two heroes did. Which might have been credible if the place were far away from civilization, but instead the property is within a city. Hokier and hokier. And on top of that, the dragon world is some sort of idealized community where you can get ice cream and hot dogs without spending money. Where do food and materials come from? For that matter, where does air and water come from? And some of the dragons wear human-style clothes. If they are isolated from Earth society, why would they mimic it-or for that matter speak English?
The long exposition story told by the dragon over the past several months is an attempt to explain everything, but it never piques the reader's interest. If anyone else is reading this webcomic, it has failed to spark commentary from them.
I will let his Twitter page do the talking.
The author seems to be genuinely trying to improve his webcomic after all, so I'm giving him a bit of credit for that. Unfortunately, he just doesn't seem to have what it takes to make this material interesting. Some webtoonists do actually get better with practice, but I don't get the impression this webcomic will ever be genuinely good.
UPDATE: The author said that he complained to Tapatalk, and while the forum briefly went down, it's back up with no sign of going anywhere, nor is there any sign that the forum went down due to anything he did. What a pathetic blowhard!