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Moment of HonestyThis week: Schlock Mercenary!
Welcome to my newest feature, the Moment of Honesty. In this section, I will write a weekly review of another webcomic. I hope to eventually learn enough about tables in HTML to include well-positioned graphics in these reviews, but for now, we have the modern marvel that is: text.

This week, we'll start off with my absolute favorite, Schlock Mercenary by Howard Tayler.

Schlock Mercenary is a science-fiction comic strip set amongst a band of money-and-violence-loving misfits. This is a comic with an ensemble cast: although Schlock, an amorphous green creature with a big gun and a big mouth, is included in the title, the comic can carry itself easily on the days that only other characters appear. The science is cerebral and yet explained for the layperson like myself; the comedy is non-stop and often highly quotable. Howard has found the perfect combination of intelligence and slapstick to keep all sorts of fans entertained.

It's hard to explain the addictive appeal of Schlock without resorting to dogmatic absolutes such as: it is the best comic on the web; it has the funniest and smartest plot lines; its message board is the most intelligent I have visited; it has the most inventive characterizations (there's a genetically engineered ugly-as-sin ambassador-turned-cook with a motorized whisk for a hand; beat that, Scott Kurtz... pun intended); and it is the webcomic I would continue to read if I were limited to one.

If you have never read Schlock Mercenary (and I would be surprised, since Howard has been kind enough to allow me to shill Vicious Lies on his message board), you need to do so. Now. Start at the beginning and don't stop until you've caught up or until you collapse from helpless laughter.

If Howard Tayler hasn't made thousands of dollars from Schlock Mercenary in the next fifteen years, there is something fundamentally wrong with commercialism. I can't be the only person who would gladly pay for Schlock action figures, merchandise, and tickets to the movie.

I grok Schlock.

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