The 1st Annual Awards

May 19, 2009


Comic. He had to return eventually. When you need an MC, who you gonna call? I ain’t afraid of no host.


Apologies for last week’s no-show, as well as the general lateness of comix recently. I guess I’d phrase it like this: been having some schedule issues the last few weeks. To put it another way, ah’m too goddamn busy lately. Projects and work and the ever-increasing time commitment associated with these illustrated walls of text has kind of annihilated my free time of late. Thus: changes will be taking place. [sound of hurried footsteps and slamming door] NO!! No, come back, they aren’t ominous changes, they’re fuck-everything-except-Subnormality-changes. In order to free up more time for this here comic and what’s left of my sanity, there will be two Drastic and Modern Initiatives, Effective Immediately! Firstly, i’m cutting back on my gig over at, so you won’t be seeing comics over there on a weekly basis anymore. I’ll be doing as many as I can, which might not end up being a lot, but we’ll see. And secondly, the Offical update day for Subnormality will now be Monday night as opposed to Sunday, thus providing me an extra evening to work on these damned things. Monday is the new Sunday, you heard it here first! Let’s get all this unpleasantness behind us now and hold off on mailing those unabomber-style death parcels to good ol’ Mr. Rowntree. Hang on to them, i’m sure i’ll give you cause in due time.


Sphynx spotted on notable landmark in large Asian country!! Click the thumbnail below for the shocking photographic evidence!! I’ll file this under Things I Never Expected to See. Thanks very much to Daniel for the photo! And if anyone else out there has spotted a Sphynx, don’t hesitate to send in the pictures.

Great Wall

And with that, I bid you goodnight and such.

Hiding in the shrubs,

W. R.

48 Responses to “The 1st Annual Awards”

  1. LafinJack Says:

    His duck’s butt is looking suspiciously like a duck’s anus in a couple panels…

  2. Michael Ezra Says:

    “And then the award was of course not presented!” Genius.

    Meanwhile, the woman presenter’s outfit in the third-last panel is actually more modest than some I’ve seen over the years at these shows.

  3. Questo's Dad Says:

    Hooray! Good comic! Exclamation points!

  4. Pierre Says:

    As usual, solid piece of work, well worth the wait.

    This was all based on the Junos, huh?

  5. Hristo Says:

    Gasp! We have been waiting too long but it was worth it.
    Sad to see you wont be at cracked thought. I always felt like i cheated time to get two of your updates in one week.

  6. erik Says:

    well, don’t work too hard…

  7. mnov Says:

    I don’t really follow American award shows, so I’m not really sure what to think of this comic.
    I do love Kubrick though, and I guess it’s kinda sad he wasn’t recognized for his work.

  8. iamafish Says:

    i was certain the last panel was going to be a dig at nickleback! thanks for holding back and giving us an even better gag! really good comic, well done sir.

  9. Nentuaby Says:

    I love the outfits on the Safest to Give An Award To recipients. They gave me one of those moments where something tells you there’s a joke there, and you have to think about it for a while, but then for ONCE it’s actually worth it when you figure it out.

  10. Dan Says:

    Working in the arts, this is painfully true, though along UK lines I’d add to the Jury a line that mentions their unwillingness to acknowledge the existence of anything outside of London.

  11. Andrew Says:

    This deserves an award.

  12. WaZen Says:

    What? Chad Kroeger didn’t get anything?

  13. bachterman Says:

    asscar prize for the best textblock comic writer! 🙂

  14. chad Says:

    Most excellent.
    I laughed myself silly at the arrow earrings.
    And I’m embarrassed to read the earlier comments and realize that I overlooked the
    wonderbreadness of the safest award.

  15. Amanda Says:

    Love it! “Applause, mendacity” pretty much sums it up.

  16. Dusty668 Says:

    Rumbutter McSquash! Sooooooooo dreamy! I want to be his lovechild, or child lover, whatever! Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

  17. Juggles Says:

    The more I read this week’s comic, the more I realize that by “the jury” you meant “you, the audience.” I understand and respect that. I agree with you. They’ll keep making shit sandwiches as long as we keep eating them.

  18. Anonymous Coward Says:

    Presenter is CREEPY.
    His style is really creepy. Those blood red shades? CREEEEPY! The suit’s pattern? CREEEEEEPY! What’s the deal with how HUGE his suit is? Is he a giant? CREEEEEEEEEPY!!

    I think I’ve noticed some other guy with a huge body and a huge suit. I don’t remember what page was he on.

  19. Nate Says:

    Damn. You’re merciless.

    Hat’s off to you, Northerner.

  20. ShadowCell Says:

    His suit makes my soul hurt.

  21. Jaames Says:


  22. Juggles: Without telling you how to interpret the comic (it’s not up to me what it means, it’s up to you), i would like to say that in general i was actually filled with enormous pro-audience sentiments on this one (albeit some audiences more than others). Artists’ success is due entirely to the audience, and then some of those artists, once successful, go ahead and act like it isn’t. They act like they’re so damned fabulous that they were simply entitled to their success, however it occurred. Everyone’s familiar with that little phenomenon i’m sure, but i think it’s worse and more insulting than people realize.

    Anonymous Coward: The mysteries of the universe are contained within his Giant Suit. Not that you’d want to get in there.

  23. Coriolis Says:

    Oh man that chin it is bugging me out.

  24. Rumbutter McSquash is the evil (or slightly more evil) twin of the host of that crazy ‘it’s not worth it’ gameshow.

    I think…

  25. Frank Says:

    You amaze me. You amaze me. You amaze me.

  26. George Says:

    I think you should have saved this for next award season, it would have had a better punch.

  27. George: Oh, it’s always award season somewhere…

  28. George Says:

    Yeah, but March is when the Oscars, Emmys, Golden Globes, and, lord save you, the Grammys are all held at once. (I don’t care if you’re an atheist, you need divine intervention to survive the Grammys.)

  29. Mark Says:

    Nothing says formal like the black and white checkers and red tinted glasses. I love the statuette and the “Memories of 5 Minutes Ago” graphic. Unlike Rumbutter’s gameshow, this comic is definitely worth it!

  30. butt boy Says:

    I love you. this comic is brilliant! and like all great comics it will be ignored by the mainstream media. well done sir

  31. Da Says:

    The announcer is the perfect combination of ridiculous clothing and shiteating grin. I love all the archetypes you slam in this strip, and you’ve fully redeemed yourself for your previous affront to Stanley Kubrick.

  32. Will Says:

    Congrats, I believe you have successfully distilled the awards shows down to their purest essence.

  33. mekonin Says:

    i kinda saw it coming, but it was a great ride al along

  34. mekonin Says:

    i kinda saw it coming, but it was a great ride all along

  35. Daniel Says:

    Very funny and well-drawn comic, as always, good sir! And thank you so very much for posting my picture! You’re the best! 🙂

  36. shallot Says:

    Is that a sculpture of an asshat?

    Sir, if you look up “win” in the dictionary, you will find a picture of that.

  37. Richard P. Thundercles Says:

    How about “Award for Movie about the Holocaust because it’s the Holocaust” award?

  38. nrst Says:

    Very funny indeed. I love the self-fellating trophy and the award given for the work that’s just so confusing that everyone calls it great (I know that’s not the correct wording).

    I’ve got a question though: Like Nentuaby, I saw that there’s clearly a joke in the suits of the guys who got the award for being the safest ones to recieve it.
    However, even though I thought about it, I didn’t get it. Is it a cultural reference only canadians/americans get? Some play on the words “polka-dot”?

    • Killjoy Supreme Says:

      The tried something different, yet so tame that nobody would be freaked out, thus the Polka Dot; it isn’t usual award attire, but it isn’t exactly a walk on the wild side

    • The Thinker Says:

      It’s also a reference to WonderBread. A lot of people aren’t getting that; I like to think the reason is that people who read this comic have good taste generally.

  39. Mike Says:

    Holy shit that’s a lot of words.

  40. I_AM_D Says:

    Nice comic! There are few awards that I put any stock in, but like most people, I think I would accept one graciously.
    I’m reminded of Steve Ditko’s reaction to an award accepted on his behalf (and I’m quoting wikipedia here):
    “Awards bleed the artist and make us compete against each other. They are the most horrible things in the world. How dare you accept this on my behalf”
    While it initially struck me as overly angry, I can entirely understand his (well-expressed) opinion.
    … Anyway, best not to ramble on too much, great work!

  41. Vonthako Says:

    And this is why I don’t watch award show. Mr. Rowntree, I think you nailed this one pretty squarely – props. 🙂

  42. Quiet Luis Says:

    all the letters are giving me a headache, but now that i think of it, my monitors giving me a headache, god i wish i could read all of this.. Fuck!
    Fucking eyeballs!

    These comics are brutal, i love them by the way, just not right now, they’re melting my brain.

  43. TheNickster Says:

    hilarious! and true!!

  44. Graham Says:

    Is that Lady Gaga in panel 9 🙂

  45. Killjoy Supreme Says:

    I agree, award shows are terrible. It’s a couple hours of the industry beating itself off, blowing the load all over the audience and calling it a magical evening.

    I especially agree with your comment on how the jury ghettoizes genres; one can really feel the pinch when looking at sci-fi or animated films

  46. I am absolutely amazed by this webcomic series. I looove reading all the little words, but mostly the way the author/artist defines the truth by stripping away all the pretenses that humanity hides behind. It’s a satirical poke in the butt to the rest of us to examine our lives in closer detail, and perhaps change our ways and live better, I suppose.
    Don’t fret, W.R. Just because none of your favorites win doesn’t mean you have “shitty taste.” It just means you are able to make your own decision by searching for the art in this world that speaks to you instead of swallowing the mainstream fodder that the media feeds to us. It is quite sad that many talented artists of this world are unknown and unrecognized for their work.

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