Friday, April 30, 2010

Contest Finalists! Finally!

Remember how about two years ago I put advertisements on my website, in order to grow fabulously wealthy, and then I was like "IT'S OK I"LL GIVE YOU GUYS SOME OF MY RICHES" and decided I would do it with a contest? No? You don't remember? Ask your grandparents, they may be old enough to remember.

Anyway, now it is thousands of years later and I have finally gotten around to picking some finalists! YES.

First off, I was surprised by how many of the entries referred specifically to xkcd sucking. i made the requirements of the contest really broad, and I was expecting more general, non-xkcdsucks specific humor. That said, most of the good ones were in this category, so you'll see it well represented in the four finalists.

OK let's look at the people who could be winners! THEY ARE:

JASON, with this better version of the rock climbing comic,
WAY WALKER, with a far, far improved version of Stephen and Me,
DAN, with this comic about how to make a joke,
FRED, for turning xkcd against itself.

Remember, one of these four fine people will win a $100 TopatoCo gift certificate and two others will win $20 ones. One of them will win nothing. OH WELL. I could have made some more finalists, so that more people would feel bad about losing together, or fewer, so that every finalist would win something, but hey, look at that, I didn't.

To vote, send me an e-mail with the subject line "I KNOW A WINNER WHEN I SEE ONE, AND {blank} IS A WINNER" with the {blank} replaced by the name, as written above, of the person you want to vote for. So if you wanted Imaginary Finalist Bill to win, you'd e-mail me with "I KNOW A WINNER WHEN I SEE ONE, AND BILL IN A WINNER" and then your vote will be counted by the magical monkeys at gmail. Put whatever you want in the actual e-mail, i maybe won't read those.

You can certainly vote for yourself, tell your friends to vote for you, etc. You have till next sunday (may 9th, 2010) at midnight to vote. I'll announce winners soon after that, unless it turns out again that i am a terrible liar.

ALSO, I should mention some folks who came close but didn't make the cut - they win nothing but eternal fame and glory (but no money or anything):

Edison, for this,
David, for this.
Anonymous, for this. [this was not posted on the official contest page, plus i don't know who wrote it. otherwise it would have been a finalist. SUCKS TO BE YOU, anon!]

Also, the single worst comic entered was this one, from an anon who thought it was so good he posted it twice!


i hope that you enjoyed this contest, thank you

64 comments:

  1. I... don't like any of the winners except maybe the "we get it" one, but I don't like that one enough to want to vote for it.

    All the special mention ones are good, though. What's going on here?

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  2. I have voted, but only GRUDGINGLY. I hardly need mention that the name of one ANN 'THE NEW HOTNESS' APOLIS was doubtless UNINTENTIONALLY omitted.

    I voted for DAN because his name rhymes with mi- Ann's.

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  3. In my book, Edison wins.
    In your gmail account, though, it's someone else.

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  4. The one that would have been a finalist is pretty good.

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  5. The rock-climbing one was great, but it was the murderous time traveler that had me rofling.

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  6. Way Walker (Secret, secret, I had a secret)April 30, 2010 at 4:09 PM

    As I read the finalists, I noticed I was the only one without a real name listed (Way Walker is not my real name).

    The time has come at last to throw away this mask. Now, everyone can see my true identity.

    I'm Bill!

    (Carl, how did you know?)

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  7. BILL IN A WINNER

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  8. ...these are supposed to be funny?

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  9. The time travel one by Anonymous is fantastic. But from the winners, i'd have to say "WE GET IT" by Fred is the best. The rock-climbing one is funny, but I prefer the ones that make fun of xkcd. the other two are too long, I can't even be bothered to read them.

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  10. I kinda wish there was more that weren't just making fun of xkcd. Not that the ones that do aren't funny, it just seems like they should've been more about genuinely making the comic better, like the Facebook one.

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  11. I don't like the rock climbing one at all. The original just stops at the fourth panel, doesn't it? If so, this one is effectively just the same twist made a second time. Does copying Randall's joke really count as an improvement?

    I know there's now the element of "you're less impressive because I can do THIS," but I don't think that cuts it.

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  12. Dan's is too damn wordy. Fred's is clever.
    Walker's made me smile.

    This is a vote for Walker's.

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  13. Walker did something pretty awesome, and Fred's right there.

    That last anon is so stupid I think the average IQ of the whole humanity has now reached a one digit value.

    Gonna leave the vote there one of these days. Cheers.

    Mole out.

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  14. I didn't laugh at any of the finalists. Walker's and Dan's are way too fucking long and have relatively lame punchlines. Fred's was pretty clever. Jason's was my favorite.

    I actually lol'd at the anon one.

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  15. I think people have already summarized my thoughts on Walker's and Dan's (though I did read them). Of the finalists, Fred's was the best, though I liked Edison's and the first anon better. This is a vote for Fred.

    No, I couldn't be bothered to send it to your inbox, Carl. Don't count it if you don't want to...

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  16. Way Walker's took what was once a lame punchline, and turned it into an anti-climactic masterpiece.

    But it is a shame about that anonymous would-be finalist. I'd have been tempted to vote for it instead.

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  17. HI INTERNET USERS ANONYMOUS HERE

    way walker is way the best.

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  18. I JUST CAN'T DECIDE!

    WAY WALKER'S AND DAN'S ARE BOTH GREAT!

    WHAT SHALL I DO? FLIP A COIN?

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  19. I have followed your directions, and put the phrase "whatever you want" in the actual e-mail.

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  20. eh, rather disappointed with the finalists.

    also edison should definitely have made it

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  21. personally i love the extra arrow one

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  22. I should've won it! I guess my edit was too subtle...

    But anyway, I'm voting Way Walker and so should you.

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  23. The vulva one was the best. The fact that it's so long is what makes the punchline at the end the best.

    Maybe you guys are just idiots that can't take a minute to read something.

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  24. The Anonymous one at the end is clearly the best.

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  25. Is it bad that I probably would have laughed at the comic at the end of Dan's comic if it had been by itself?

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  26. Yeah, the Spinal Tap comic undermines it's point by being actually funnier than the original.

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  27. The climbing one is total fail as are the rest. Why a huge mostly empty panel with post-punch line dialogue?

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  28. Yes, I undermined the point by making the last panel funny (in my opinion, of course). I did it on purpose, though, as I was still trying to make a comic.

    There were three points to it:
    1. Randall ignores criticisms
    2. Sometimes it feels like he makes references just to make references, even when they don't make sense.
    3. wikipedia

    Anyway, I like most of the entries posted. Not too sure if I'll be a self-centered bastard and vote for my own or not...

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  29. Hotfurry69's was clearly the best. I'm surprised it didn't get more love.

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  30. I like the anon time travel one. Probably the most clever

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  31. mine was made right after the twoface/acne comic and the valentines comic, without those as context, I'll admit it doesn't work. Contest idea: best sequel-that-makes-it-funny comic.

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  32. someone vote for JASON for me, i cba to send a real email.

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  33. Haha! Title win :)

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  34. Can't quite decide between Dan and Way Walker... I'll have to sacrifice my firstborn to decide.

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  35. To omfgloud and Sam: if you can't decide between Dan and Way Walker, the only logical choice is to just vote for me instead.

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  36. Yeah, the last mention was epic.

    Oh, Anon, I wish I knew you...

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  37. Wow hahah, you guys don't have anything better to do but sit around and plagerize XKCD? Why don't you mane your OWN comic if XKCD sucks so bad?

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  38. Still doesn't stop xkcd from sucking.

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  39. hey mole, while the comic posted was stupid, you are too. the average iq of humanity is 100 and will remain so forever...

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  40. hey mole, while the comic posted was stupid, you are too. the average iq of humanity is 100 and will remain so forever...

    Only if we constantly re-calibrate the test.

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  41. I'm too lazy to think of an alt-text along the lines of "Tragically, all of them died due to extreme proximity to extremely hot lava. It's not just lethal if you get dunked in it."

    it's not like it would've made the comic funnier, it's just the first thing that popped into my head.

    someone less tired than me can suss out whether or not the comic's flow works or not.

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  42. I like the concept of the new comic. Kids taking pretend too far in regards to the floor being lava -- ok, I could see the humor in that. My problem with it is the lack of consistency in their actions as compared to this concept.

    The whole joke hinges on them overresponding. Except for the first guy, who apparently, off-panel, blew up the kitchen, the other two are doing relatively kid-like things (albeit the hose is bratty and damaging, but not exactly ridiculous to the extent of being funny). So, we've got 1 kid _maybe_ being ridiculous, one kid being a major brat, and one kid just being a kid. Just makes the joke fall on its face.

    Ah well. At least I didn't groan at this one, so that's something.

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  43. Overthought the shit out of that one didn't you Volt? I Don't even really agree with it as you put it anyway because one of them is actually trying to convince authorities to send helicopters and one time actually succeeded in making their county a no-fly-zone. That's more than your average prank. I really liked this one, unlike the last several in a row.

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  44. How do you know he's trying to convince authorities? Looks like a kid talking into a fake walkie-talkie to me, and we certainly don't have any particular reason to believe otherwise.

    As far as the alt-text goes, meh. I guess it helps? But I rarely let the alt-text overly affect my feeling about the comic strip itself. Again, I didn't say I hated this one, just that I thought it was a little off.

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  45. Wow. Today's XKCD was genuinely funny. Alt-text sucked, but still! Alert the media! Randall wrote a funny comic!

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  46. Dan (the new guy!)May 2, 2010 at 10:20 PM

    ... the alt text needs to use a different word other than grounded... because of the refernce to the FAA, I read it as they were on a plane which got grounded because of... then after re-reading it a few times, I realized it was the kids who were repremanded (I wouldn't use that word either, but something other than grounded would work better).

    I also naturally assumed the kid on the right was pretending to talk into a walkie talkie, rather than on the telephone with the authorities...

    but ah well...

    I think it'll be a close one between Jason and the Anonymous who didn't post a name and is thus excluded from the competition... as those two were the ones that seemed the best executed in my opinion... :D

    Perhaps once this contest is over, you could add a page to the site which is basically along the lines of "favourites", where people can "upvote/downvote" XKCD comics, and thus any person visiting the site can get a quick look at everyone's most and least favourite comics!

    -Dan

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  47. Not only was today's xkcd funny, it also had above average art by the comic's standards. The splash looks cool, and the setting is clearly established.
    My only complaint is the use of the term "we" when everybody looks the same. Who the people are is a little confusing. (Is it Randall and his previously unknown twin brothers?)

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  48. I approve of today's XKCD. Perhaps not an instant classic, but legitimately funny and decently well-executed.

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  49. I think it'll be a close one between Jason and the Anonymous

    "Jason and the Anonymous" is a good name for a band.

    And I agree, today's xkcd was pretty good.

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  50. "hey mole, while the comic posted was stupid, you are too. the average iq of humanity is 100 and will remain so forever..."

    I meant average as in "take everyone's IQ scores, sum and divide by the population of Earth". It isn't that hard to grasp, is it?

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  51. @Mole: The point remains that the average IQ of the world will still be 100, since the average IQ is, by definition, 100.

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  52. IQ is explicitly designed to follow a bell curve - 100 is the mean and I think the standard deviation is meant to be 20. That's why, as Nathan says, average IQ would only remain 100 if we were to recalibrate the test with the passage of time (to fit the raw scores onto this bell curve).

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  53. SD is 15, not 20.

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  54. IQ is not a test, though. IQ is just IQ, and the mean is always 100. Yes, methods of testing the IQ would need to be recalibrated if the average intelligence of the population suddenly changed significantly, however the point is that your IQ is not your result on an IQ test. No IQ test can perfectly assess your IQ anyway, all they can do is approximate. So while the average IQ testing score of everyone may not end up changing (and probably wouldn't be exactly 100 anyway) the average IQ will always remain at 100.

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  55. So, in summary: you can't measure IQ and even if you could it would be bloody useless.

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  56. It's funny how the last strip in Way Walker's one is EXACTLY the kind of thing Carl would bitch about if it was posted on xkcd. "Oh wow, making fun of how a company name sounds like a sexual word, that's not funny, what a repeated joke, he's done that joke so many times, I've seen that joke a million times in other places, how unoriginal, how obvious, my dog could write a better joke than that, wank wank wank, bullshit bullshit bullshit etc."

    But, put it in the context of a competition to show how much xkcd sucks, and suddenly it not only wins finalist, but nobody in the comments even points out what an obvious, tired, over-player joke it is.

    An irony that is also a particularly apt display of the general worth of this site and the people on it, I'd say.

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  57. Please tell me you're trying to be funny, since the last line is taken directly from xkcd.

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  58. I love Dan's comic. Down to the last panel, which should absolutely have been the real text for that image.

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  59. Enry, that is an edit of xkcd. Which means it was taken from there, with original font and all that.

    The humor is more based on the great lenghts achieved to get there, the fucking epic story before, and not the joke itself. It's what people call a shaggy dog story.

    It's not very funny, but the way he assembled it all together was pretty awesome.

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  60. The Anon finalist was the best...too bad I can't vote for it ):

    Anons represent!

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  61. In addition to what Mole said, the fact that the vulva question is so dumb is actually part of what the joke depends on. A shaggy dog story isn't a shaggy dog story if the payoff is something that lives up to your expectations. It has to be a big long build-up for a sudden letdown.

    Taking that epic journey and building up that much to ask an actually relevant or interesting question would make for an entirely different story, one that would likely be some sort of serious commentary rather than making a joke.

    But breaking through windows and sailing the seas and traversing frozen wastes and hot-air ballooning and facing down guards with katanas... just to ask that stupid-ass vulva question? That's even better than Nate and the lever.

    Randall, on the other hand, either thought the joke was just fine on its own, or he sucks at shaggy dog stories. Just SAYING "I've come so far" is not enough buildup at all. Way Walker's shows rather than tells.

    Oh, and it gets rid of that "security?" post-punchline dialogue, too.

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  62. I laughed my ass off at the extra arrow one for some reason.

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