Inside Ursula Hitler's Head is a strange, lumpy beast. But then, so am I.
I constantly change my mind about almost everything in my life, and when I swing, I can swing hard. As a for instance, I can look at a picture of myself in drag one day and think I look pretty hot, and then see it again the very next day and think I look like a monster, I'll want to die for ever having been so foolish as to show my hideous face in public.
Jesus, what a hound!
That can go the other way too. Some of my favorite pictures of myself in drag made me want to cry, the first time I saw them. I'd lock them away, never wanting to see them again, and then one day I'd randomly find them and I'd see them in a whole new way.
But as conflicted as I am about everything, I'm really conflicted about Inside Ursula Hitler's Head. When I started it it was just this goofy thing where I knocked out episodes as fast as I could, and as a result there's some pretty awkward crap in the first 10 episodes or so. Jokes don't work, the characters gesture too much, etc. Hey, I was learning.
But then you get into stuff like the Invasion of the Posh Spice Zombies storyline, where I no longer have the excuse of being a beginner. When I look back at that stuff now, I honestly don't know what the hell to think about it.
I obsess over all the stuff I know just did not work, like the whole thing about how the Posh Spice zombies zombiefy people by flashing their magic panties at them. I've explained before that that was just me trying to write around the fact that because of technical limitations with the animation I couldn't have the Poshes biting people like regular zombies would, but the solution I came up with was a bad idea, poorly presented. And the resolution with the "Anti-Posh" is also pretty iffy. I wrote myself into that storyline without any idea of how I was going to wrap it up, and I think it shows.
But... There is some funny stuff in there. There are lines and sequences I'm still proud of. And something really clicked for me in that final scene with Meany and Sweetie, it was one of those moments when the characters came alive for me. So... I don't know. I just don't know.
I get some good feedback on the cartoons from strangers, but almost nothing from anybody who knows me. (If you're wondering if I mean you, I probably do.) That sometimes bothers me, a lot. I gotta figure they tried an episode or two and thought it was crap. I mean, it's one thing for people to just not have time to keep up with the new cartoons or whatever, but when somebody you know has put 60 freaking cartoons online and you've somehow never said a word about any of them, that's just getting peculiar. (Of course, their feedback wouldn't matter to me so much if I had any idea if the cartoons were worth watching... But I don't.)
Sometimes it must seem like I'm desperately fishing for compliments, about my looks, my art, my everything. But the truth is that I'm desperately fishing for some sort of objectivity, some way to know if I'm pretty or ugly, talented or untalented. Sure, pretty and talented are what I'm hoping for, but mostly I'm itching for people to tell me the truth about this crap. I just can't figure it out by myself, and that's kind of like having some magically cursed wallet that never has the same amount of money in it twice. You go to pay for a bagel, and you never know if you're gonna have a million bucks or two nickels and a sticky old penny.
I don't feel like Inside Ursula Hitler's Head is the best work I'll ever do. I don't even feel like it's the best work I'm capable of doing right now. It's more like I'm posting stuff straight from my sketchbook, with all of the spontaneity, false starts, self-indulgence and occasional inspired improvisations that that implies. If I wasn't the person making these cartoons, would I be watching them? Yeah, I think I would. I'd probably be willing to forgive a lot of the awkward, confusing crap for the sake of the parts I liked. (Hey, Oglaf has been totally baffling me for a few Sundays now, and I still think it's a fantastic strip.) But then again Inside Ursula Hitler's Head is a cartoon that exactly caters to my weird sense of humor, along with a lot of my even weirder fetishes... So it's kind of hard to imagine anybody else doing it!
Barring disaster, I plan to keep making these damn things. But it's weird to keep plugging away at something without ever knowing if you're making something kind of great, totally worthless, or (as seems increasingly likely) some bizarre combination of the two.