How charming, the idea of turning yourself into a comic version of yourself. How effortless to plonk yourself into a two-dimensional world of flat colour where you can live out your fantasies.
“Instant comics and cards starring YOU and your friends (capitals mine).” That’s what greets you when you open the Bitstrip app. In this case, the word that trumps ‘instant’ is the word ‘you.’ In fact, the one thing this app does well is pander to your need to be the star of your own TV show. But since that’s way too expensive and Youtube isn’t for everyone who doesn’t emanate Ryan-Higa-like energy, a comic is the next best thing.
Bitstrip lets you be the central figure in your own private universe, which if we let it, becomes the very bastion of petty narcissism. No wait, that’s Instagram. Bitstrips is the nadir of self-absorption sunk to unknown depths with every frame into which you lock yourself.
Here’s why not to bitstrip. Because:
1. The 2D version of you flattens all your 3D features, and that includes your nose.
2. There are enough apps out there that already pander to a latent need for self-aggrandizement, even if it means uglifying yourself through a do-it-yourself generic comic template.
3. The self-validation this self-gratifying comic app gives is the kind that seems eternal (your avatar is forever unless you remove it) but is, in actual fact, fleeting and temporary. You might find yourself periodically tweaking your avatar, hence the option to ‘update your look.’ How ironic, as the choices in the template are in dead colours and stereotypical flesh tones along racial lines. I’m Asian, but why would I choose the yellowish skin tone option? I’ve always wondered what it’s like to have Caucasian coloring. Here goes! Click.
How ironic that my real-life physique is way more flattering, and my eyes, even when listless, have a sparkle that the Bitstrips graphics department were too lazy to animate with code.
4. Bitstrips lets your imagination take a rest by creating tens of “status comics”, greeting cards, and comic strips for you. All you have to do is insert yourself and a friend. Friend is avatar-less? No problem. With time saved from thinking creatively, you ‘create’ an avatar for your friend through a series of multiple-choice features, body parts, and the ugliest clothes ever illustrated.
5. The irony? Your meticulously-crafted bitstrip doesn’t even look like you.
Comments? Love to hear them.
- Bitstrips: Explained (huffingtonpost.com)
- Bitstrips Facebook Comics Annoying Already (guardianlv.com)