Girl Genius Steampunk Webcomic

Girl Genius is a webcomic started in 2002 written by Phil and Kaja Foglio and colored by Cheyenne Wright about a world of steampunk mad scientists that build amazing robots. Girl Genius has greatly influenced our art and writing and we recommend you read it. You can read it for free online, or buy physical copies. The authors write a new page every other day, so if you get to the end, make sure to look back to find new pages.

Trilobite fossil
Trilobites are the Heterodyne family sigil (the Heterodyne family plays a central role in the story) which is a fitting symbol of the old and mysterious family.

What we like most about the main character Agatha Clay is that she is really smart and hilarious. She builds lots of cool inventions that do amazing things, and since she thinks differently than the other characters, her dialog is really funny. Our favorite quote is,  “But I want to do math now!” Some of our favorite inventions that she had made are a coffee machine that makes coffee so perfect it makes people go mad, a deer robot that looks really pretty but has a bunch of different types of weapons, little circular robots that can make other robots, and a weaponized wagon army controlled by an pipe organ. The fact she is also very dangerous just adds to the fun!

Steampunk Web Comic Girl Genius- Agatha Clay

The artwork is fantastic and really brings to life the rich world of Steampunk Europa. What is most impressive is the attention to detail, for example, there are sometimes little monsters on the page, and you have to look carefully to notice them. Also, the steampunk robots look like they can actually work! There are also lots of scenes that are happening in the background, so look carefully, otherwise, you might miss some information! In the beginning, it is black and white, but most of the story is in lots of colors. 

Each location is rich in details and lets the reader explore a steampunk world like no other. Our favorites are a huge underwater city buzzing with lots of steampunk submarines and Mechanicsburg, the home of the Heterodyne family which is packed with danger, mystery and dominated by the powerful Heterodyne castle.

Girl Genius comics
Girl Genius comics


The plots take unexpected and fun detours but everything is intertwined, all the characters are somehow connected to each other, and there are no loose ends. The dialogue is hilarious and rich, for example:

Violetta, “So, when can we be sure it is done and we haven’t doomed the Earth?”

Agatha, “Oh once the containment limit returns to normal. As for not dooming the Earth- well- that is more a lifelong goal, really. But so far so good.” 

And another example of witty dialogue after Franz, a cyborg dragon defeats Humongulus, a huge robot, in battle:

Franz: What? you are not mad? 

Humongulus: Humongulus angry? Never! You have used guile! Tactics! Awareness of the landscape! Humongulus is impressed!

Franz: Good ’cause with those arms you could punch me into next week.

Humongulus: You know the very sole of Humongulus.

And it is not just us who thinks Girl Genius is great, it has gotten multiple Hugo awards!

Girl Genius
The Hugo Award!

The best part of the world is the crazy robots and monsters. There are lots of weird monsters that just live alongside everyone else, and crazy robots are an everyday sight. The robots and monsters are central to the story and some are main characters who act and think very differently than humans which adds to the realism.

Girl Genius comic
Our favorite little clank

This is a picture of a little clank (robot) that the main character made. Girl Genius is in a steampunk world and has cool robot illustrations. We were so inspired by Girl Genus’s cute and cool-looking robots, we spent two years designing and building our own working steampunk robot Number Five

Kid-made Dog Robot Number Five
Number five

The Black Apple

The Black Apple Art Cute, clever and just beautiful to look at a Hip Monster will dig the art from The Black Apple. Her work has a timeless quality yet is thoroughly in the now. Mostly portraits of young woman, her art has symbolism hiding in every brush stroke. A blend of big eye art, folk art and Symbolism a Black Apple painting is a work to be explored.

The Black Apple Art
Squirrel Girl Print
shown on the left at first seems simple, a girl dressed up as a squirrel. But soon questions begin to arise. Why does her poise seem defiant yet defeated? Was she forced to wear the costume or is it her defense against the world?



The Black Apple Art Bubblegum Betty, shown below, is one of our favorite pieces. A sassy young girl staring back at you using her bubble as a mask.

Monster Recommended for Art
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Rawtoast Design

Rawtoast Design Logo Check out Rawtoast Design for some interesting and fun limited edition prints and cool greeting cards. From revolutionary tofu to rainbow sprouting toilets to robot pirates the imagery excites a monster’s mind.

Rawtoast Design Art
The departure
is a prime example of work from Rawtoast Design. The style is influenced by folk Americana with sparing use of color and simple landscapes. Cute and sentimental the characters are deceptively simple, able to inspire hours of musing. The scenes are imaginative and fun often evoking memories from a seemingly shared childhood with the artist, Jesse Kuhn. He is available for commissioned work.

Recommended for Artsy Prints
Web site

Revolver SF

Revolver SF Store A store with a Hip Monster in mind, Revolver SF (now closed) has the latest fashion and wears. Want a black leather jacket that will make your friends jealous? Need that trendy little cat to fend off the cold night San Francisco wind? Revolver SF is the place to go. Before daring the fashion police in the Mission District it is a must to at least window shop at.

Revolver SF Cloths
Designs are modern and perfect for a night out on the town. Typical of their style is the Denham Spy Plus – Womens’ Biker Jacket shown left.


Revolver San Francisco
136 Fillmore St.
San Francisco, CA 94117
Store Hours: 12 to 8pm

Binary Winter

Binary Winter Logo If looking for trendy and quirky t-shirts Binary Winter is a good place to begin with lots of limited edition designs that will make other T-Shirt adorning Monsters jealous. (Monsters are suckers for t-shirts involving armed squirrels.)
Binary Winter Tanktop
Most designs by Binary Winter are mono-colored and subtle -all the best to hide their twisted sense of reality. With cool shirt styles and colors to choose from you are sure to find one that matches your inner monster.

 Recommended for Trendy T-Shirt
Web site
Store site


Dorklandia Design Cute, quirky and fun Dorkland is a monster’s favorite. They have lots of crocheted creatures and monsters sure to be the favorite toys in the lair. Colorful and soft they warm a monsters heart. One problem is keeping the tempting creations away from your cat.

Dorklandia Designs
The merchandise changes frequently so be sure to check Dorklandia out on a regular biases. Their scarfs are a must to venture out on a cold San Francisco night.

 Recommended for Cute Crocheted Creatures
Web site
Store site

The Cats Are In at Borderlands!

All too rare today is a neighborhood bookstore. Alas, online giants like Amazon, along with ubiquitous brick-and-mortar chains like Borders and Barnes & Noble, have almost eliminated them all. The few left are often struggling with an air of defiant desperation you can smell from their outdated and disappointing selection.

Ripley the Cat at Borderlands
Ripley the Cat at Borderlands

Not Borderlands. This fine San Francisco institution, located conveniently in the Mission, is not only open 7 days a week from noon until 8 pm, but thriving with author signings, guest speakers, and other events. And did Monster mention it specializes in new and used genre literature: science fiction, horror, and fantasy? How cool is that? Not only can you keep up with new releases here, but also purchase periodicals or DVDs domestic and imported, find out-of-print or rare books, or at a bargain price, a sci-fi classic you’ve been yearning to curl up with!

Monster loves sci-fi and horror, especially those featuring Monsters! The selection is large and excellent, and Borderlands is so much more than a bookstore. Read their mission statement, and you’ll realize that they strive to be a “social and professional center for readers, writers, publishers, reviewers, artists and other individuals with a strong interest in the fields of Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror and Macabre Fiction,” and succeed they did.

The staff is knowledgeable and helpful, and should you be looking for something specific, they will happily search for it for you, along with the Borderlands hairless cats, who may regally rest on top of the computer monitor or strike a pose next to the author/speaker. Either way, they bring a casual sense of community and family to the store. Monster thinks they feel like heated fuzzy peaches, odd but in a comforting way.

Visit Borderlands if you haven’t already, and please, if you find something you like, purchase it here! By helping to support it as a business, you also support it as a great neighborhood place for readers, authors, and even cats, to hang out.

Pointer  Store web site

Laura George

Laura George Art Surreal yet fun, Laura George’s work harks back to the vivid and fun imagery of the Seventies. From a fun loving sloth to a monster telling you not to panic the art is creative and playful, a good fit for any monster’s home.

Laura George Art There are lots of nice people to meet (shown left) is a great example of her work. Stylized faces stare out from the art each with there own distinct personality. From the boyish face looking far away to the woman who seems consumed in gloom, each face has a story to tell. This is true of all her work. They are snapshots from a still unfolding story which we are fortunate enough to catch a glimpse of.


Recommended for Cool Art 
Store site


NifNaks Toys NifNaks wool creations are playful, bright and sure to make your office-mates jealous. The designs are influenced by Japanese styles with minimal but well chosen use of details.  They are perfect to liven up and cubicle or room.



NifNaks MonkeyNifNaks’ Chee! the Monkey – desk pet is condensed cuteness.  Its innocent baby face stares out at you for attention. From the the tiny ears to the long tail it is darling ball of wool.

Monster Recommended for Cute Wool Creatures
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Ana Apple

Ana Apple Designs For those monsters out there with little ones Ana Apple is the place to go to make sure your little monsters is the hippest little monster on the block. Well-made and cute toddler wear, toys and more you are sure to find a great gift to spoil your special bundle of joy. Designs are playful and cute.

Ana Apple Designs
Etty Owl Onesie
shown right is a sure way to pimp out your kid before your afternoon cruise through the neighborhood.

Monster Recommended for Cute Kid Wear