Copyright: freefall

Famous science-fiction comic by Mark Stanley, starring an alien known as Sam Starfall, a robot named Helix, and a genetically engineered wolf, Florence Ambrose.

▼ Original article

Infamously long-running and slow paced speculative-fiction comic strip drawn by very long time furry/digital art scener Mark Stanley (how long? Eric Schwartz thanks him for the loan of some Amiga RAM in the credits of a classic Amy the Squirrel animation...). The longevity and pace are largely down to it almost always being a three-panel strip, three days a week on an alarmingly regular schedule (only broken when either some major piece of equipment, or Mark himself, gets broken), within which space we can usually expect a minute advancement of the overarching dramatic plot, some clever wordplay or slapstick, and a guaranteed punchline or dropping of scientific knowledge. Thus far we are up to strip #2168 (as of 26th March 2012) and although the story seems to be nearing some kind of climax, it's unlikely that it will end any time soon. Unusually for a webcomic, it appears to be drawn and published entirely for the love of storytelling, with Mark continuing to work his long-time powerplant job; there are no site adverts that would bring in revenue other than from his (free) webhost, no print collections (merely an occasionally updated set of freely downloadable ZIPs), no merchandise, no funding drives, and the artist himself stays largely under the radar with few public appearances and fairly minimal (but friendly) fanbase contact.

The story itself follows near-unstoppable smalltime "loveable" crook Sam Starfall (an alien "Sqid" in a humanoid environment suit) and his rather unwitting accomplice Helix (a spherical, four legged, two armed stainless steel robot) and their increasingly significant adventures on the planet Jean, after they arrange for starship engineer Florence Ambrose (an experimental genetically engineered "Bowmans Wolf" (human-red wolf hybrid)) to be "bumped" out of cold storage as her ship stops for supplies on the pretence that she's been reassigned to them to repair their salvaged and barely operational orbital shuttle, the "Savage Chicken". Since those humble beginnings back in the mists of nineteen-ninety-*mumble* (earlier, if you include random one-shots originally published in fanzines), the scope of the story has meandered through a mass of scene setting hijinks and expanded to include a philosophically challenging mission to save the free will of the planet's robot population from a lobotomising "software update" being pushed out from the company that technically owns them by a corrupt executive hoping to claim all robot property and earnings for himself. The general flavour is of fairly hard sci-fi, maybe a 7 or 8 on the Moh's scale (varying as suits the story, and moreover the jokes). You keep your spaceship clean and well-ventilated because a buildup of dust in microgravity can be explosive...

Source material's art style is very minimal and fairly cartoonish, though cleanly and consistently drawn with some shred of realism, belying the series' long, long run; images are reasonably detailed but without any wasted lines. Plain black and white lineart in the early days, progressing to monochrome shades, and latterly full color provided by a dedicated colorist. Fanart tends to be drastically more detailed than the original comic...

But that's not important right now. Florence, anthro red wolf, rrr, very smexy, flat chested (for realism!) and hugely intelligent. Sam, cheeky troublemaker who looks a bit like a sock puppet. Throwing custard pies at the mayor... IN SPAAAAACE.

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2017 anthro barefoot black_nose bowman's_wolf breasts brown_fur brown_hair canine cheek_tuft chest_tuft ciderward cleavage clothed clothing crossover dialogue duo feline female fire_extinguisher flat_chested florence_ambrose freefall fur hair holding_object humor katia_managan khajiit mammal pink_nose prequel red_wolf rotary_fan screwdriver simple_background sweat the_elder_scrolls tools tuft video_games webcomic white_background wolf yellow_eyes yellow_fur zero_gravity

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Date: February 16, 2017 ↕0 ♥3 C0 S 2016 anthro assisted_exposure bowman's_wolf brown_hair canine chest_tuft clothing edit fan_service female flat_chested florence_ambrose freefall frown hair hand_on_hip hi_res holding_object mammal mechanical_fan navel nude nude_edit pussy red_wolf smoke space surprise tom_fischbach torn_clothing tuft wardrobe_malfunction webcomic window wolf

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Score: 2
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Date: November 28, 2016 ↑2 ♥10 C2 S 2015 anthro belt black_nose bottomless bowman's_wolf brush canine clothed clothing cup dressing female florence_ambrose freefall inner_ear_fluff legwear mammal monochrome pants pillow portable_music_player red_wolf shirt socks solo starfighter toothbrush webcomic wolf zero_gravity

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Score: 3
User: imagoober
Date: November 24, 2016 ↑3 ♥5 C0 S C 2013 anthro axe bowman's_wolf brown_background brown_hair canine eyes_closed female florence_ambrose freefall fur hair mammal melee_weapon multicolored_fur navel nude pictographics red_wolf rock simple_background sitting smile solo starfighter thinker_pose thought_bubble two_tone_fur weapon webcomic wolf

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User: imagoober
Date: November 24, 2016 ↑12 ♥21 C1 S