There is so much more life and energy in the newer examples! The fact you enjoyed drawing them really shines through, and imbues them with a vibrancy the originals lacked. I say go with the style you actually like using. And I'll also follow that up with a story.
The whole reason I've started making a webcomic now, when I hadn't intended to do anything of the sort for years, was an issue of style. At the end of 2019, I stepped back from about 70% of my teaching hours because I wanted to change direction and to pursue a career in illustration. My original aim was to illustrate children's books. It's relatively well paid and secure, insofar as careers in visual art go. But after a few months of spinning my wheels and getting nowhere, I realised something which had me crestfallen.
My style is not a popular style for children's books.
My style is also something I really like. I'm unwilling to go chase after a new one, to ride the coattails of the current trends in children's illustration. I did try, briefly. I hated it. I hit a block and struggled to do anything for a month. So now, I was at an impasse. I don't have the social media reach to survive on commissions. My Patreon is empty. Those things take years to build, and I could focus on that, but it's so luck-based and insecure. I live in Western Australia, so pursuing animation or game dev is a non-option. Plus, I still wanted to work in illustration because I love narrative work and I love environment painting and I love character art, and I didn't want to specialise in just one. I'd get bored.
Then, while thumbing through one of my Avatar graphic novels, it clunked into place. This is similar to my style! This is illustration, but it's sequential, too! This features the kind of character designs I like drawing! And it's so broad, I'd get to paint the environments too. And, oh, guess what? It's a massive growth market with more and more big publishers hopping on board the graphic novel train ever year. There's your relative job security, Kay, you boring fossil.
There was one problem. I had never in my life made anything resembling a comic. I need to be able to show a publisher I can, you know, do that before they'll pay me to illustrate one. So I grabbed a chunk of the massive universe I've been building for over a decade, fleshed it out, wrote some script and said "Okay, 2021! This year is learn-how-to-comic-year!"
And my god, did I make the right choice. (Artistically and emotionally, at least. Financially, we'll see in a few years.) I'm feeling so good about my art, so good about my style, and very optimistic about where I can take it! I am loving creating at the moment. And that's the key. Art is hard. Some days are an utter slog. You have to like what you're doing, or you'll just burn out. If you're working in a style you hate, you'll probably never finish the project, and even if you do, you'll likely do so much damage to your morale you'll struggle to recapture the joy which making art should bring.
The moral of this story is - lean into your strengths. The feeling when those puzzle pieces of style, ambition and creativity fit together is transformative. If you ever face a choice between working on something which makes you feel bad, and working on something which makes you feel good, choose the good. Every time. 90-year-old you, full of good memories and a lifetime of working on things you loved, will thank you for it.