Sunday, December 03, 2006

Throw-away panels

Five for this Sunday:

Arlos and Janis by Jimmy Johnson
Garfield by a hired hand
Heart of the City by Mark Tatulli
Brewster Rockit: Space Guy! by Tim Rickard
Pickles by Brian Crane

Sundays tend to be big days for silent penultimate panels. Sometimes there's just no better way to fill up all that space than with an SPP. Today's Arlo and Janis will demonstrate:

Back in the old days (and to some extent still today) cartoonists had to throw in a few superfluous panels to allow for newspapers to rearrange the strips as needed. (The Peanuts reprints in the L.A. Times are always missing the second panel.) This Arlo and Janis SPP feels just like one of those literal throw-away panels.

(excerpts from) Marmaduke, 11/26 and 12/3:

Could someone please send Brad Anderson some new Dog Gone Funny ideas? In the past two weeks he's had to use submissions from 2001 and 2002. Surely someone out there has a dog that does something ridiculously useless. If your pekingese, "Honeybunch," spins in a circle and farts every time she hears Lawrence Welk, please send your story to Marmaduke, United Features Syndicate, 200 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10016. You will be helping us all.


Anonymous Pope William T Wodium said...

I'm not usually one to defend modern Garfeild strips, but today's penultimate panel was hardly a throwaway. If you look at Garfield and Odie's expressions over the course of the strip, you'll see that the penultimate panel is absolutely necessary to maintain the parelellism that is so crucial to the final panel's visual gag.

I feel like I'm dissecting Mark Twain's frog, but Garfield bothers me so often that I feel like I have to defend it on the rare occasions when it does something right.

12:09 AM  
Anonymous The Tailor Mottle Komzoil said...

The esteemed Mr. Anderson would likely get more submissions if the submissions address ever turned up in the comic... Your blog post is the first I've seen that addy printed in direct relation to Marmaduke (note that I try not to spend too much time staring at Marm, however; the artwork is so bad it almost makes my eyes bleed.)

Until these dated references came along, I've actually suspected that Mr. Anderson was just making these up.

9:49 AM  
Anonymous Ferrick said...

For all of you Marmaduke lovers out there, I give you,


2:10 PM  

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