Review: I Roved Out in Search of Truth and Love

'I Roved Out in Search of Truth and Love' is a new webcomic by an artist named Rupert Everton. It's like 'Rat Queens', only if 'Rat Queens' was actually good and featured projectile female ejaculations. Which, maybe it does. I haven't read 'Rat Queens' in a while. Hello, my name is Justin Wood and I actually requested to review this.

I know an artist that once told me he'd love to draw pornography, but only wanted to illustrate other people's scripts because he still felt awkward giving people a clear window into the things that turned him on. The same goes for reviewing pornography, which I imagine is part of the reason why it rarely gets a lot of critical play. There are other reasons too, like why you wouldn't expect a film critic to publish a scholarly critique of 'Massage My Big Ass', but in the case of comics I get the impression that much of it comes down to finding the topic of pornographic material still too personal of an experience. There are simply too many interesting examples of the genre being produced right now, especially online, to shrug it off as being unworthy of the same critical attention as vanilla comics. You have stunning, distinctive artists like InCase with 'Alfie', or creators who have become a part of the larger conversations that we often claim to be so interested in promoting in comics, like Jess Fink's 'Chester 5000 XYV' or Erica Moan's 'Oh Joy, Sex Toy'. Pornographic comics are featuring brave and frank perspectives with previously unheard of intimacy; sex positive and engaging every spectrum of experience.

Oh, damn. Sorry, forgot I was reviewing a comic.

'I Roved Out'.

Yeah, it's basically just porn. Really, really good porn.

I-Roved-OutI mean, yes, it does feature a range of body types, sexual identities, and races, but Everton never communicates any other agenda than getting you wet or hard. The story deals with the adventures of Cinderella Von Umberwolf, an elf ranger who also happens to be an extremely lazy nymphomaniac. I don't use the word nymphomaniac loosely, I mean the protagonist of the comic is a perpetually fuck-drunk slacker who seems to only stop having sex as some sort of abstract formality. While sexually insatiable bimbos are the lifeblood of the generic male fantasies that dominate people's perception of pornography, what sets Cinder and her equally wanton friends apart is actual personality. Cinder doesn't exist to satisfy the male fantasy, she exists to satisfy herself, a goofy depraved good-for-nothing on a constant quest to do as little as possible and scratch-the-itch. Think Jamie Hewlett's 'Tank Girl', only with the sexually graphic training wheels removed. If anything, that could be Everton's claim to a progressive angle to the comic, with a cast of likeable defined characters enjoying unapologetic gratuitous rutting without ever needing to justify a jot of it. Slut, sans the shame.

Don't let me forget to mention how this thing looks, because gat-DAMN. Everton is one of those artists people like me like to classify as 'obnoxiously talented'. Featuring a style that blends in and out of richly detailed and abstract representation, his art is vibrant and immediately identifiable, rich and saturated colors glowing off the page. His characters are illustrated with fantastic charisma, never straying too far from realism or too close to all out cartoon parody, lending a lot of charm to the characters, in and out of coitus. The anatomy is beautiful, unique to each individual character and with a stunning tactile fleshiness, with eye-brow raising attention to detail to the implausible wealth of fluids he seems to take particular enjoyment in illustrating.

“Implausible wealth of fluids”. You know, having to write lines like that are probably why ordinary critics don't review this stuff. Fortunately, dear reader, you have me instead. Moo-hoo-ha-ha.

The webcomic has launched with 19 pages, funded via Everton's Patreon, giving readers a full length issue worth of pages to peruse rather than dragging out the introductions over multiple weeks of single updates. If my praise seems somewhat exaggerated for these 19, you can credit this reaction to the extensive expanded work featuring Cinder and pals that existed before the launch, with multiple issues worth of short comics already online before consolidating the ideas down to the mostly linear narrative of 'I Roved Out'. Seeing these characters I'd already grown fond of given what may end up being a surprisingly epic adventure is, to say the least, exciting as a fan of Everton and ambitious erotica.

So, if you've made it this far, what say you fair reader? Is it awkward and icky reading someone gush unconservatively about a really good piece of nasty smut they found? Maybe it is, but I'm unconvinced that that should prevent us from sharing. Media, all media, is mutual experiences that we are all able to participate in, albeit in our own way. Whether it's laughing, crying, cringing, or coming, a good comic is a good comic and is only limited by the individual quality of craft. Everton has crafted something great and I just wanted to take a moment to share it with you, even if you decide to enjoy it in complete privacy. Or with someone else. Or a bunch of people. Whatever floats that boat.

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I Roved Out in Search of Truth and Love
Creator: Rupert Everton
Format: Webcomic


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