It’s been three months (and some days) since my initial review of Dumbing of Age, and David Willis continues to expand his coterie of characters. Thus far the event horizon of DoA has engulfed not just characters from Roomies and It’s Walky, but has expanded its hunger to include cast members from his other currently-updating comic Shortpacked, in the form of fan favorites Ethan and Amber. Already we can start seeing hints of character chemistry forming and reforming around various characters; Willis is avoiding old comfortable relationships (such as between Walky and Joyce) and instead tossing out new ideas and seeing how they stick.
Of them, I must admit I’ve enjoyed the recent interactions between Danny and Amber the best; while he’s still smarting from his recent breakup with his high school sweetheart (and his own regrets for following her instead of going to a school that focuses on computer science). It’s been fun listening to the two of them gripe about being forced to take an Introduction to Computer Science course, though I must wonder how current Willis is with this; even back when I went to college (when computers ran off of water power and were gear-powered monstrosities) (well, not quite, though steam-powered computers would be rather cool) students could opt out of the Intro courses.
Still, I suppose if Danny and Amber had opted out of this course, Willis couldn’t have made fun of the simplicity of these courses, or started building on a new friendship between characters from two different series. It’s amusing as well, as Willis had once stated Joyce would be the central character of the series. Much as I predicted before, the ensemble cast has already seized control and is running off with the comic, with Joyce becoming just one of many cast members vying for screen time. This has proven to be a good thing, as it allows the diverse elements of Willis’ varied works to mingle and create new alloys that we wouldn’t have imagined before DoA brought everyone together.