Brother & Sister Short 2

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Watch the original: http://www.newgrounds.com/portal/view/600574
This script was bothering me to be animated ever since I made the previous Brother and Sister Short. I thought it was pretty fun, and I really wanted to work with these characters more. I started working on this piece soon after I animated the first short, but school and all has kept it from being completed for many many months.
I've cleaned up the character designs this time around, as well as begun shifting the color palette a bit and changing everything to an HD format. I hope to keep improving these things over time.

Also, there once again an easter egg on the main menu!
Runtime (w/o credits): 1:15
Extras Runtime: 2:31

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This is an entertaining flash. The background graphics are pretty good. The characters could use some more work, though. Even though they are not "badly drawn", they do look more like South Park characters... which would be ok, if you'd aim more for a South Park like cartoon. But judging from the content of this short, this isn't supposed to be like SP.

Anyway, the background noises are a good addition. They are not too loud so they drown out the voices of the main characters. But it's not too quiet either.

The voices sound a bit too thin and I think sometimes there are some static noises. But overall, the voice actors do a good job. Maybe all you need is a better mic.

{ Review Request Club }

Aqlex responds:

I am extremely influenced by South Park, and it's very clear that a lot of my work pays homage to it. BUT, at the same time, I consider my work to be a less... less crude version of South Park? One that is for a younger audience, and one that is more "real" than the somewhat insane world of South Park. So I definitely try to both be like South Park and different than South Park in the ways that you mentioned.

Thanks about the background noises, I definitely spent some time trying to get them to just the right levels.

About the voices, I've gotten new equipment since this episode was recorded, so I hope that my audio will already be improving!

Thanks for the review =)

Everything in the flash was solid however I don't think it was explored well enough. The animation is good, very crisp and clean while also retaining a unique roughness to it. The voice acting was well delivered even though it all sounded a bit tinny, but that's more of a problem with the mics than the actual actors.

Even though the voice work isn't a big problem individually, I think it's a part of a much bigger problem that the flash suffers from. Overall I don't think you went far enough with what you had. The characters were very static when talking except for a few hip movements and pointing. It would have been great to see a sort of cartoonish world come alive in the short. Maybe, when one of the characters is confrontational with another, they could stretch all the way around the person like a snake. Or maybe have the actors do extremely wacky portrayals of their characters. In short, EXAGGERATE!!! (Yes the capitalization is intentional)

I'm suggesting the tonal shift from semi realistic to cartoony because subtlety doesn't exactly work in your favor in this. They're discussing very minute details about political correctness very passionately and it's being played mostly straight. Either improve in playing things straight or experiment with the more overexaggerating side of animation.


Review Request Club

Aqlex responds:

Hmm, this is very interesting. Thanks a lot for the review, it's really made me think, and you pointed out some things that I don't know if I would have noticed or thought of myself. On both the animation end and the tonal end, I really feel like I achieved what I wanted to. BUT, those things I wanted to do also appear to be the things that are keeping the audience from engaging in it as much as I would like. The animation is very purposefully simplistic and rough, and that's something that I really want to keep, at least with these characters and this world. It's a style that I find really...exciting? That might not be the right word. I do love the idea of characters wrapping around others like snakes (and I do actually have a character in other animations that moves in snakelike ways), but that is not something I want present in this specific animated world.

On the tonal level, I was also really trying to aim for something specific. I wanted to avoid the cartoonish extremes that I feel is used all over the place today (all over newgrounds, all over a lot of animated shows). I like a lot of work like this, but I specifically wanted a more....real(?) world. But not completely real. I wanted something more realistic, but still with a "tint" of cartoonishness. I like absurdity, but I was trying to go for a much less absurd version of absurdity... if that makes sense? Like, exaggerating is kinda what I feel like a lot of people would do, so I wanted to tone it down a bit? But not completely to the point that it's like, straight reality.

But you pointed out that this piece really is on the fence. It isn't too cartoonish, and it isn't straight enough. And I do actually believe that's why it isn't really appealing to people... but at the same time, that "on the fence" kind of deal is exactly what I was aiming for. I guess I didn't really consider that this might not work for many people...

Anyway, this gave me a lot to think about. Thank you again! I do believe you've pinpointed the problem this piece has with appealing to people.

ALSO, the sound definitely was a bit tinny. I've actually upgraded my equipment and software since this piece was recorded, so hopefully at some point, my future animations will begin using all of my new stuff! That's one area that should definitely be improving soon =).

I see some nice changes in the animation! funny joke too! XD

Aqlex responds:

I'm glad you enjoyed it! I'm also happy to hear that you were able to see some of the changes in the animation, I though they might be too subtle.

Credits & Info

4.69 / 5.00

Apr 19, 2013
12:04 AM EDT