Monday, October 4, 2010

Homestar Runner - Any Time Now

In 2005, I was introduced to a website that changed my life.  That sounds kind of dramatic, I admit, but it's true.  A website that I would visit every so often, with increasing regularity, that would always take my mind off of my troubles.  No matter how I was feeling or what problems I had in my life, this site would always and without fail, lift my spirits.  It didn't do this by being inspirational or encouraging, it did it through humor: simple, beautiful comedy.  This site was called www.homestarrunner.com.

The greatest thing about homestar is its simplicity.  The animation, the stories, the characters, everything is simple.  I realize that this is a bit out of character for me.  For the most part, I enjoy deep character drama, even in my comedy.  Homestar somehow gets a pass on this.  It is just so charming.  Fun.  Really the perfect escape, which is probably why I love it so much.

Homestar Runner was created by Mike and Matt Chapman (The Brothers Chaps (TBC)).  Since 2000, they have been bringing laughter and joy to the hearts of their many fans through regular (usually weekly) updates to the site.  Strong Bad emails, in particular, have enjoyed success, totaling at over 200 cartoons and bringing to life many internet memes including Trogdor the Burninator and Teen Girl Squad.  The legendary 200th email was particularly extravegant, with They Might Be Giants joining in the fun.  (They Might Be Giants and TBC have collaborated many times in the past, with TBC even making the music video for their song: Experimental Film.)

Recently, updates to the site have stopped cold.  The Brothers Chaps have had hiatuses before, but never for this long.  The last real update to the site was on November 10th, 2009.  They did a small update on April 1st, 2010, but it was just a small April Fools Day toon.  We have never gone this long without an update to Homestar Runner.  Many explanations have been given for the hiatus.  In December, Matt had his second child.  There are also rumors that Mike and Craig Zobel are working on a stop-motion film for the Jim Henson company.  A lot of fans simply think that TBC don't really feel that compelled to do the site anymore and are just calling it quits.

October, though, is a pivotal month.  Since the site's inception, TBC have made a halloween cartoon every single year.  Halloween is on the horizon, and homestar fans everywhere are waiting, growing more tense with every day that passes.  The question we all find ourselves asking:  will TBC return for Halloween?

I can say that I will be among the many to check Homestar on halloween, waiting with baited breath to see if Homestar Runner will once again return triumphantly for the 10th Halloween cartoon.  If there's no toon, I can honestly saw that I will cry.  There will be tears.

But it will be alright, in the end, even if they never return.  It will be the end of an era, to be sure, but all of those hours of entertainment will still be there for us to revisit again and again.  I like my no-armed white dude, and even if TBC never make another toon ever again, he'll still be there, mispronouncing his awws.


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