PDA

View Full Version : 22 panels that never work



Aaron Kashtan
10-02-2006, 11:03 AM
The existence of this thread is required by the laws of symmetry. ;) Can we come up with 22 panels (or types of panels) that never work?

Shellhead
10-02-2006, 11:19 AM
Since Wally Wood did the 22 panels that always work, Rob Liefeld could do the 22 panels that never work. As for specifics, how about the notorious "no feet" panel, or "gun barrel bigger than head" panel. As a nod to Frank Robbins, there should also be a "marionette with strings cut action" panel, to reflect the horrible contortions that he put Captain America and Luke Cage through back in the 70's.

Lone Ranger
10-02-2006, 11:20 AM
2 talking heads. One supposedly in backgroud, but actually appears to be in foreground.

This has the effect of making them a tiny, tiny person.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/liefeld.jpg

glue
10-02-2006, 11:29 AM
Good lord, that's awful. Forget that the kid is tiny, they both look stoned/drunk/to be victims of Joker gas.

T GUy
10-02-2006, 11:33 AM
Since Wally Wood did the 22 panels that always work, Rob Liefeld could do the 22 panels that never work.

I don't have enough experience of Liefeld, but I think there should be a fight between him and Adams on this one.

Lone Ranger
10-02-2006, 11:35 AM
Indifferently pounding fist on desk.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/infantinoghosts113.jpg


Carmine was never a master of facial expressions.

scratchie
10-02-2006, 11:46 AM
I wish I had a scanner to post some examples, but one panel that plagues modern comics is the too-tightly-cropped (usually long and skinny) "Something crashes into something else, or comes in the vicinity of something else, or is in the same room with something else" panel.

StrikeForce Albert
10-02-2006, 11:55 AM
Indifferently pounding fist on desk.



Carmine was never a master of facial expressions.

He's pounding something, but I'll be damn if it's a desk

Tommy
10-02-2006, 01:26 PM
http://ape-law.com/GAF/Page06/index.html

http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/8707/capgaf7xa6.jpg

Right, that's it for the story! Let's check out this "Arte" (A trademark of Extreme Studios, not to be confused with 'Art,' an industry-wide standard of quality not subscribed to by Extreme Studios and its management). Here, one of my favorite scenes, the soon-to-be Bucky (Designed to look a heck of a lot like Carrie from Frank Miller's Dark Knight Returns) confronts her brother and his friend, a tremendously-huge freak ... and no one seems to think this is weird. Check it out, looking at where 'John's' feet would most likely end, his pal is probably buried about three feet in the sidewalk. Not to mention that his gargantuan arms would easily scrape pavement were they ever in a relaxed position. AND on top of all of this, the stoop on which Bucky sits appears to go up about one story, officially making it the largest stoop I've ever seen ... and if that IS the entrance to their building, then having the stairs go up to the second floor kind of defeats the purpose of having first-floor apartments.

MWGallaher
10-02-2006, 04:27 PM
Repeated stats of the exact same panel of artwork, either zooming in or zooming out over the course of an issue. Inevitably draws attention to the inconsistency of line width in the blowup panels, and thus, to the technique rather than the content. I thought this gimmick was out of favor (although its close relative, the repeated stat of a panel at identical size, is still frequently employed today) until I found it used, with predictably poor results, in DC's recent Mystery In Space #1.

Sanagi
10-02-2006, 05:43 PM
The instantaneous conversation panel, wherein upwards of a hundred words of dialogue are laid over a group shot of characters striking poses.


Repeated stats of the exact same panel of artwork, either zooming in or zooming out over the course of an issue. Inevitably draws attention to the inconsistency of line width in the blowup panels, and thus, to the technique rather than the content. I thought this gimmick was out of favor (although its close relative, the repeated stat of a panel at identical size, is still frequently employed today) until I found it used, with predictably poor results, in DC's recent Mystery In Space #1.
Ooh, yeah, I hate that. Totally distracting.

Dan B. in the Underworld
10-02-2006, 07:14 PM
http://ape-law.com/GAF/Page06/index.html

http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/8707/capgaf7xa6.jpg

People actually paid money for that crap? The mind boggles ...

... & all of a sudden, Brother Power the Geek doesn't look half-bad at all.

JeffreyWKramer
10-02-2006, 07:28 PM
http://ape-law.com/GAF/Page06/index.html

http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/8707/capgaf7xa6.jpg

So awesomely awful it's wonderful.

Shellhead
10-02-2006, 07:55 PM
Repeated stats of the exact same panel of artwork, either zooming in or zooming out over the course of an issue. Inevitably draws attention to the inconsistency of line width in the blowup panels, and thus, to the technique rather than the content. I thought this gimmick was out of favor (although its close relative, the repeated stat of a panel at identical size, is still frequently employed today) until I found it used, with predictably poor results, in DC's recent Mystery In Space #1.

On a similar note, I hate those repetitive panels in comics written by Bendis , where the artwork is the same in each panel and only the contents of the word balloons change.

dr_cyclops
10-02-2006, 08:09 PM
Anybody remember that Alpha Flight issue "Snow-Blind". :rolleyes:

MWGallaher
10-02-2006, 08:41 PM
People actually paid money for that crap? The mind boggles ...

... & all of a sudden, Brother Power the Geek doesn't look half-bad at all.
Dan, ol' buddy, I've got *all* the Liefeld issues of Cap, and I wouldn't part with 'em. It's like if there was a special collection of "Highlights for Children Presents: Goofus".

Aaron Kashtan
10-02-2006, 09:06 PM
Anybody remember that Alpha Flight issue "Snow-Blind". :rolleyes:

In the album Rambla arriba, Rambla abajo by Carlos Gimenez (a Spanish cartoonist who really deserves to be better known in the United States), there is a sequence which is the reverse of the blank white panels in "Snow-Blind." At one point in the book, the protagonist takes a girl home to his apartment, and they start making love in pitch darkness. This is depicted with a sequence of blank black panels.

Aaron King
10-02-2006, 10:53 PM
I completely second

I hate those repetitive panels where the artwork is the same in each panel and only the contents of the word balloons change.
and

Repeated stats of the exact same panel of artwork, either zooming in or zooming out over the course of an issue.
They're both symptoms of the same disease. This was the first thing that sprang to mind when I read the subject line. "Twenty-two panels of the same woman's face never work."

I'll also second the repetition of the completely black or white panel. One or two is fine. I like the idea of letting the reader complete the picture (ala H.P. Lovecraft), but this is useful in very specific situations and is not to be overused.

Edit: Just need to add this in case no one saw it in the "...that always work" thread: http://drawn.ca/wordpress/wp-content/images/ivan22.gif

Aaron Kashtan
10-02-2006, 11:14 PM
I have a strong dislike for photostatted panels. It's a technique that can potentially work quite well, if the artist really wants to show something repeating over and over again with no change at all. The trouble is that it's overused to the point where it loses any impact it might have had. Also, too often this technique seems like just an excuse, a convenient way for the artist to save him/herself the trouble of drawing another panel.

If photostatted panels have to be used at all, they should certainly not be used in conjunction with word balloons. I don't remember ever seeing this done, but it seems like a very lazy thing to do. When people are talking, they don't maintain the same facial expressions and body positions throughout the entire conversation. They use body language to emphasize their points, and their facial expressions change in response to what is being said. So there is really no excuse for using a series of identical panels to show two people talking.

Aaron King
10-03-2006, 01:11 AM
...but it seems like a very lazy thing to do. When people are talking, they don't maintain the same facial expressions and body positions throughout the entire conversation. They use body language to emphasize their points, and their facial expressions change in response to what is being said. So there is really no excuse for using a series of identical panels to show two people talking.

Could I suggest Alias by Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos (I think?)? The art and the story are beautiful, but there are all sorts of repeated panels. I think this is due to Bendis's scripting since it happens in other books that he writes. Basically, he uses repeated panels to show how hardcore the characters are. They don't react to things that other characters say. I dunno... Scott McCloud talks about repeating panels in Understanding Comics and how elongating or enlarging panels can have a similar but better effect... and I think it's very true. But BMB doesn't agree. Many of his characters are blase. Because of the repeated panels, I often find myself removed from the stories and wishing his characters would tilt his/her head or smile a bit, but... no.

Lone Ranger
10-03-2006, 05:31 AM
How about the old "Everyone on the team has something to say" panel.

This was always the biggest flaw of the Sgt. Fury series.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/SgtFury9.jpg

MDG
10-03-2006, 06:10 AM
Dan, ol' buddy, I've got *all* the Liefeld issues of Cap, and I wouldn't part with 'em. It's like if there was a special collection of "Highlights for Children Presents: Goofus".
I bought the first issue because a friend told me,"You have to pick this up. You won't believe it." And as seen here, it provides textbook example of how not to do things. (Insert your own Bush joke here.)

One of my least favorite panels is when the artist says, "I think these two people talking in a room are boring, so I'll focus on a statue of Tarzan fighting a lion on the table next to them." I've seen two favorites--Willamson and Wrightson--do this.

MDG

Mike Kuypers
10-03-2006, 06:54 AM
It's the old focusing-on-a-pair-of-rhinos-during-a-conversation panel, courtesy of Neal Adams: Green Lantern #85 (http://www.comicbookresources.com/columns/oddball/closeup.php?image=greenlantern85-rhinos.jpg).

scratchie
10-03-2006, 06:55 AM
How about the old "Everyone on the team has something to say" panel.

This was always the biggest flaw of the Sgt. Fury series.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/SgtFury9.jpg
That's artistic license. People complain about "decompressed" storytelling these days, well, the panel you've provided is an example of the alternative.

Shellhead
10-03-2006, 07:20 AM
Anybody remember that Alpha Flight issue "Snow-Blind". :rolleyes:

Definitely. A few years back, I posted a poll in the X-forum here, asking Uncanny fans if they would still buy the latest issue if every page was blank like that one section of that Snow Blind issue. More than a third of those X-fans said they would buy it, just to complete their run, even though they would be unhappy about it. To me, that perfectly summarized why the X-titles sucked for so long, Marvel knew they didn't need to bother with quality for the typical X-fans.

founder81
10-03-2006, 07:21 AM
How about the old "Everyone on the team has something to say" panel.

This was always the biggest flaw of the Sgt. Fury series.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/SgtFury9.jpg

The best (worst) example of this I can think of is Transformers #1 by Marvel. There is a 2 page splash of all the Autobots and each of them gives a paragraph introducing themselves.

Aaron Kashtan
10-03-2006, 07:47 AM
It's the old focusing-on-a-pair-of-rhinos-during-a-conversation panel, courtesy of Neal Adams: Green Lantern #85 (http://www.comicbookresources.com/columns/oddball/closeup.php?image=greenlantern85-rhinos.jpg).

In Mark Trail, this happens in at least one out of every two strips. For example:

http://www.owlnet.rice.edu/~ericjean/images/Mark_Trail.gif

This technique can work, though, if the objects the artist focuses on are somehow related to the subject of the conversation. My favorite example of this is from New Teen Titans #26. Dick and Kory decide to spend the evening at home, and start making out, and Perez focuses on a statue in the foreground which depicts two naked people embracing.

Graham Vingoe
10-03-2006, 08:17 AM
Definitely. A few years back, I posted a poll in the X-forum here, asking Uncanny fans if they would still buy the latest issue if every page was blank like that one section of that Snow Blind issue. More than a third of those X-fans said they would buy it, just to complete their run, even though they would be unhappy about it. To me, that perfectly summarized why the X-titles sucked for so long, Marvel knew they didn't need to bother with quality for the typical X-fans.

that issue is the one which made me decide to drop Alpha Flight completely, at a time when I bought virtually every Marvel title in existence on the day of release. Ok, the fact that the storyline sucked (imho) was also a factor but paying a quid( actually I have a feeling it cost more) for completely blank pages was the final straw

The Mirrorball Man
10-03-2006, 08:24 AM
that issue is the one which made me decide to drop Alpha Flight completely
Pfff! I thought it was hilarious!

MWGallaher
10-03-2006, 10:21 AM
Another panel that never works for me is one I would dub "From the Other Side of the Glass". That's where there's a window or other transparant material between the reader and the subject character, usually indicated through one of two techniques:
1) A character is in the reader's position (i.e., we are watching "through that character's eyes), and this character's reflection is superimposed over the subject character, suggesting--unsually poorly--a reflection.
2) The subject character's hand is pressed against the window, and is rendered as an inevitably unconvincing arrangement of ovals representing the pressed fingertips and palm.

Rob Allen
10-03-2006, 01:18 PM
In Mark Trail, this happens in at least one out of every two strips. For example:

http://www.owlnet.rice.edu/~ericjean/images/Mark_Trail.gif

Some fans I know refer to this as "The Mark Trail Drinking Game". You're supposed to drink when the word balloon seems to be coming from the foreground animal rather than the people way in the background. Drink twice when the word balloon seems to be coming from the wrong end of the animal. This happens surprisingly often.

Simon Garth
10-03-2006, 01:35 PM
Another panel that never works for me is one I would dub "From the Other Side of the Glass". That's where there's a window or other transparant material between the reader and the subject character, usually indicated through one of two techniques:
1) A character is in the reader's position (i.e., we are watching "through that character's eyes), and this character's reflection is superimposed over the subject character, suggesting--unsually poorly--a reflection.
2) The subject character's hand is pressed against the window, and is rendered as an inevitably unconvincing arrangement of ovals representing the pressed fingertips and palm.

On a vaguely related tack, there's the "unconvincing use of a mirror" technique.

A bit unfair to use this example, because it might work better in the context of the comic, but to me, in isolation this just doesn't read - I don't get "mirror" at all - I get "hang on, they've just flipped 180 degrees" and "Alex Toth would kill him :)"

http://www.newsarama.com/marvelnew/Blade/02/blade01_01.jpg

I just don't get this at all - where is the mirror? who is looking in it? why are they looking in it (other than to do the "vampires don't show in mirrors" thing)?

Maybe this works in the comic, but this page - shown on Newsarama as an example of Chaykin's craft, in the use of the mirror - just doesn't work at all for me.

In fact, the more I look at it, the worse it gets - because the foreground character on the right is in a pretty similar position - to me the picture reads "the two armoured guys are in the same/similar position. In between panels, they've fliipped the body end to end. Blade has disappeared"

Simon Garth
10-03-2006, 01:45 PM
Commented on this one before in the original thread, but how many times do you have to look at this to figure out who that last thought bubble belongs to?

Reptisaurus!
10-03-2006, 04:16 PM
Another panel that never works for me is one I would dub "From the Other Side of the Glass". That's where there's a window or other transparant material between the reader and the subject character, usually indicated through one of two techniques:
1) A character is in the reader's position (i.e., we are watching "through that character's eyes), and this character's reflection is superimposed over the subject character, suggesting--unsually poorly--a reflection.
2) The subject character's hand is pressed against the window, and is rendered as an inevitably unconvincing arrangement of ovals representing the pressed fingertips and palm.

Good one. Although, 'n maybe my memory is failing me, I think I've seen this effect used to good effect in the very beginning of the Alan Moore Swamp Thing run. Or maybe I'm imagining it.

Panels that NEVER work: Single characters, usually in the background or the occasuonal whole panel are randmomly colored purple. See most Marvel books, circa 1980.

Babylon23
10-03-2006, 10:13 PM
Whenever I see plain black and white panels, I'm reminded of the comedy issue of What If (original series #23).

"What if the Silver Surfer, White Tiger, Night Rider, Iceman and Moon Knight fought Wendigo in a snowstorm?" - Plain white panel

"What if the Black Panther fought the Shroud, Master of Darkness in a coalmine?" - Plain black panel

dr_cyclops
10-04-2006, 08:38 AM
Aside from poor layout and panel construction, most of the panels mentioned on this thread do have their purpose in good storytelling. It is when they are used out of storytelling purpose, that these panels cause great problems for the reader. An all white or black panel can work, but not when panels like these are used to avoid real storytelling.
Then there is the over captioned and/or over word ballooned panels of Ditko's "Mr. A". (I'm not sure if this everworks.)
The enviorment establishing panels with no visible characters and a word balloon pointing to a building or vehicle. Not so bad if we know (or will soon know) who's talking. Far worse, if it's a conversation.
The ridiculous close-up on eyes or mouth, can really work when the story (not the artist) calls for it.
I now have begun to wonder if Woody's "22 panels that always work" always work. Is it possible even this can be messed up with Bad storytelling?:confused:

MDG
10-04-2006, 08:56 AM
National Lampoon once published a strip about a health inspector where the joke--besides the fact that the guy's job was looking for rodent droppings in restaurants--was the the artist continually used the wrong kind of panel to tell the story. It was drawn by Neal Adams.

MDG

Loren
10-04-2006, 11:06 AM
Priest describes one such panel from "Total Justice" here (http://digital-priest.com/comics/adventures/frames/paycheck.htm):


I remember the exact moment I gave up on comics. There was a scene, on page 20 of issue #1 of a thunderously ignored miniseries called TOTAL JUSTICE, where the Flash was racing across a beach with Robin and Green Lantern. It was supposed to be this incredibly devastating moment for Wally West, a guy who is so invested in his super-power that the power literally makes him who he is. Due to plot device/McGuffin hoo-hah, everybody's lost their powers, and Flash experiences the humiliation of not quite being able to keep up with the sprightly Robin without them. As Wally invests in trying to attain even this small victory— trying to pass Robin on the stretch— an even greater horror befalls him: Green Lantern passes him, too...

To my horror, when the finished comic arrived, I flipped to that scene to see the artist had chosen the exact wrong angle to shoot this scene.

You see, in comic books, you can't ever portray speed with n object coming right at you. Well, you can, but you have to be exceptionally talented. Comic books use still pictures. Objects coming at us look static and lose perspective with the world around them, so it's difficult to portray immediacy or speed.

If you have three guys running across a beach, you can shoot that form most any angle you could imagine, except the dead-on angle. And that's how the artist chose to draw that sequence: three guys running right at us. The scene had no feeling of speed, time, or place. No sense of motion whatsoever. The three of them looked as though they were standing still, the horrific moment when Flash was overtaken by Kyle Crab-Face Guy (TM) was obliterated in bad storytelling and day-glow color.

I just wish I had a scan of the page to share.

Kristy Valenti
10-04-2006, 03:56 PM
The very last panel of a superhero comic book in which the guest character for the next issue is introed in a word balloon with their name in some kind of dramatic, splashy lettering: i. e., It's HERCULES!

It's extremely common, too. I think I saw in Wonder Woman #2, and a couple of X-Man books (I believe the big-fonted character was Sage).

Aaron Kashtan
10-04-2006, 04:16 PM
Welcome to CBR, Kristy.

Jesse Hamm
10-05-2006, 01:45 PM
The very last panel of a superhero comic book in which the guest character for the next issue is introed in a word balloon with their name in some kind of dramatic, splashy lettering: i. e., It's HERCULES!

It's extremely common, too. I think I saw in Wonder Woman #2, and a couple of X-Man books (I believe the big-fonted character was Sage).

I hate when a 'guest' is advertized on the cover, and then doesn't appear until the last page. "Join us NEXT month, when...!" But admittedly, that's less a panel problem than a marketing problem.

Alan2099
10-05-2006, 09:31 PM
How about when they annouce it's going to feature a "mystery guest" and then show them right on the cover?

Pinball
10-07-2006, 10:37 AM
Extreme Man: "You know what i hate about comics?"

(Extreme Man leaps at foe from second-story balcony)

Extreme Man: "Mass quantities of dialog from a character who could never speak all those words in the time it takes to do whatever that character is doing!"

(Extreme Man plants boot in foe's head)

Reptisaurus!
10-07-2006, 12:46 PM
How about when they annouce it's going to feature a "mystery guest" and then show them right on the cover?

Heh. When has that happened?

Roquefort Raider
10-07-2006, 01:03 PM
I don't much like this epitome of laziness: zooming in on an eyeball. Especially if it's a blank eye like Batman's when he's wearing his mask.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v191/kareshi/th_eyeball3.jpg

"Oh... my... God !!!"

Reptisaurus!
10-07-2006, 01:12 PM
I don't much like this epitome of laziness: zooming in on an eyeball. Especially if it's a blank eye like Batman's when he's wearing his mask.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v191/kareshi/th_eyeball3.jpg

"Oh... my... God !!!"

Ohh. Good one. I don't think I've ever seen that work.

Unless it's an injury to the eye panel. Those ALWAYS work.

matt levin
10-07-2006, 04:45 PM
Thank you all for all these panels. It's something I'd never thought of, myself, and I admire the facility with which you've found such dreadful results.

Matt

dr_cyclops
10-07-2006, 11:37 PM
Unless it's an injury to the eye panel. Those ALWAYS work.
Yes they do. Nothing says "Villain", better than an injury to the eye panel.

the goddamn batman
10-08-2006, 12:01 AM
Damn, you guys are nit-picky.

I'd honestly say that most of these are either not a current problem, personal opinion, or have to do with the artist in question rather than the panels themselves.

Wally's panels always work, because he showed you how to draw them. It's all there for you with no real work required beyond the drawing itself... which is often the easiest part.

Other panels, are up to the artist and writer. And page layouts are hard. Deciding what goes in the panels and how you're going to get it in there is harder.

Wally Wood was a cartooning genious... I'd like to see his list of panels that never work.



And stop listing panels that work sometimes... sometimes is hardly never.;)

dr_cyclops
10-08-2006, 07:25 PM
[QUOTE=the goddamn batman]1)Damn, you guys are nit-picky.
2)Wally's panels always work, because he showed you how to draw them. It's all there for you with no real work required beyond the drawing itself... which is often the easiest part.
3)Other panels, are up to the artist and writer. And page layouts are hard. Deciding what goes in the panels and how you're going to get it in there is harder.
4)Wally Wood was a cartooning genious... I'd like to see his list of panels that never work.QUOTE]
1) I'm not nit-picky, I'm "crazier than a soup-sandwich". Just ask Cei-U.:p
2) "The easiest part"?!!! Oh please tell me how easy comic storytelling is. :confused:
3) This is why I want to know "how easy it is".:rolleyes:
4) So would I, Questioning authority is never a crime.:D
To think, I almost got offended over the "injury to the eye panel" commment.

scratchie
10-08-2006, 07:31 PM
1) I'm not nit-picky, I'm "crazier than a soup-sandwich". Is that more or less crazy than a football bat?

dr_cyclops
10-08-2006, 07:59 PM
Is that more or less crazy than a football bat?
I'll have to go with "not as crazy as a Manbat, but crazier than a football bat.;)

DDM
10-09-2006, 08:29 AM
I don't much like this epitome of laziness: zooming in on an eyeball. Especially if it's a blank eye like Batman's when he's wearing his mask.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v191/kareshi/th_eyeball3.jpg

"Oh... my... God !!!"

John Byrne & Terry Austin used this effect well when Phoenix exposed Mastermind's soul to the cosmos in Uncanny X-Men #134; Phoenix pinned Mastermind against the wall using her Phoenix claw then the panels slowly focus on Mastermind's iris when she exposes his mind to the universe.

dr_cyclops
10-10-2006, 08:12 PM
2 talking heads. One supposedly in backgroud, but actually appears to be in foreground.

This has the effect of making them a tiny, tiny person.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/liefeld.jpg
This panel has continued to haunt my memory over the last couple of weeks. Good God! It's eating my brain!:D

Mutate
07-19-2007, 02:46 PM
If I get my Essential X Men 3 down, I can scan in , like Pinball said, some ridiculous examples of "Mass quantities of dialog from a character who could never speak all those words in the time it takes to do whatever that character is doing!" courtesy of sirs Claremont and Cockrum.

MartinRedmond
07-19-2007, 02:56 PM
2 talking heads. One supposedly in backgroud, but actually appears to be in foreground.

This has the effect of making them a tiny, tiny person.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/liefeld.jpg

That panel works quite well to add drama, it's just that the art is ah... quirky~

Roquefort Raider
07-19-2007, 05:03 PM
Another panel that never works for me is one I would dub "From the Other Side of the Glass". That's where there's a window or other transparant material between the reader and the subject character, usually indicated through one of two techniques:
1) A character is in the reader's position (i.e., we are watching "through that character's eyes), and this character's reflection is superimposed over the subject character, suggesting--unsually poorly--a reflection.
2) The subject character's hand is pressed against the window, and is rendered as an inevitably unconvincing arrangement of ovals representing the pressed fingertips and palm.

Oy! Now I feel like an idiot, since I love that effect and use it frequently!

I DON'T WANT TO BE A ROB LIEFEEEEEEELD!!!

MWGallaher
07-19-2007, 05:38 PM
Well damned if you didn't do it better than most pros I've seen, RR! I guess any panel *can* work if you do it right!

Kirk G
07-19-2007, 07:36 PM
How about the old "Everyone on the team has something to say" panel.

This was always the biggest flaw of the Sgt. Fury series.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/SgtFury9.jpg

Now, wait a minute.
This has also been hailed as one of Kirby's strongest features.... that is, the circular composition.

I guess it could work for some, and not for others, but don't condemn it for all...

Kirk G
07-19-2007, 07:39 PM
Oy! Now I feel like an idiot, since I love that effect and use it frequently!

I DON'T WANT TO BE A ROB LIEFEEEEEEELD!!!

Hey, I just checked out those two example pannels and they worked for me... though I had to look at the girl in the reflection twice. The flattened fingertips sold it for me though...


And don't worry....
Rob Liefeeld has that corner covered all by himself...
(Imagine Cap's head being put on backwards, and nobody notices...:rolleyes: )

Kirk G
07-19-2007, 07:47 PM
I don't much like this epitome of laziness: zooming in on an eyeball. Especially if it's a blank eye like Batman's when he's wearing his mask.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v191/kareshi/th_eyeball3.jpg

"Oh... my... God !!!"

Now, I like this, when used sparingly... Jack Kirby did it well, but usually as an ending or parting shot in a scene. John Byrne had it down, when he used the close-up on Magneto's eyes smoldering within the helmet.
But it should punctuate the scene...not be just one element within it.

(And I hate the injury to the eye motiff... it just never worked for me... though I appreciate it's place in history and in "The Seduction of the Innocent"... it never made me squirm....until I saw it used in the recent Villians United six part mini series and felt it was UNNECESSARY... It turned me off, pulled me right out of the book!)

Shawn Hopkins
07-20-2007, 08:31 AM
I always laughed when books would use a two-page splash to introduce a whole new team, with little labels near each saying "Deathbloodstryke" or whatever the person's name is. That could not look more stiff and posed.

Aaron Kashtan
07-20-2007, 10:47 AM
I always laughed when books would use a two-page splash to introduce a whole new team, with little labels near each saying "Deathbloodstryke" or whatever the person's name is. That could not look more stiff and posed.

I thought that Jim Lee did this pretty effectively in Uncanny X-Men #275, although it's been a while since I read that issue.

Patrick Zircher
07-24-2007, 12:00 PM
----------

Aaron Kashtan
07-24-2007, 12:39 PM
Critics. Yeesh.

There's a lot to consider when drawing a comic, especially under a deadline.
It's exhausting work and there's rarely enough space for everything you're asked to draw.
If two or three panels in a book don't work as well as the other 102 do, that's a pretty damn good percentage of getting it right.

I started this thread mostly as a joke, to complement the existing thread on "22 panels that always work." I wanted to poke fun in a gentle way, not to condemn artists for using bad panels. I totally agree that it's impossible to be perfect 100% of the time, especially under such difficult working conditions.

I'm curious, though. As an artist, what do you think of the use of photostatted panels? Do you see this as a useful labor-saving device, or an illegitimate way of drawing fewer panels, or what?

Kirk G
07-24-2007, 12:46 PM
I started this thread mostly as a joke, to complement the existing thread on "22 panels that always work." I wanted to poke fun in a gentle way, not to condemn artists for using bad panels. I totally agree that it's impossible to be perfect 100% of the time, especially under such difficult working conditions.

I'm curious, though. As an artist, what do you think of the use of photostatted panels? Do you see this as a useful labor-saving device, or an illegitimate way of drawing fewer panels, or what?

When used sparingly, or for a specific effect, then it works. But when it becomes a crutch, simply copying exactly the same image over and over, I think we all know when its being abused.

When it's necessary for a flashback, or to indicate a memory flash or something similar (see the recent flashbacks in Identity Crisis) that's different, and I prefer to see it, rather than see a hack attempt to draw the same image and be so different that the reader misses the point. John Byrne did a great job of imitating original Avengers pannels in a collage in a (then) recent Namor issue where Namor was halucinating, and thinking of those early years. He may not have photocopied, but the similarity of the images and drawings WORKED very well to evoke the feeling and summarize the story quickly!

Patrick Zircher
07-24-2007, 01:08 PM
----------

Roquefort Raider
07-24-2007, 01:37 PM
I started this thread mostly as a joke, to complement the existing thread on "22 panels that always work." I wanted to poke fun in a gentle way, not to condemn artists for using bad panels.

I think we all agree with that, especially since we don't have a consensus on what consists a panel that doesn't work (while we agreed easily on what makes a panel work)!


Do you see this as a useful labor-saving device, or an illegitimate way of drawing fewer panels, or what?

Like anything else, it can be used or misused. I had no problem with most of the photocopied panels from Alias, especially when they emphasized how a character felt stifled during a conversation. When the artist wants to "fix" his camera, it's also sensible to photostat a background, instead of redrawing and redrawing it again and again. (When using photostats in a talking-heads scene, I think it would be cooler for the artist to tweak each image to make it slightly different; but that is of course for the artist to decide).

Some photostats do stand out like a sore thumb, however, especially when the original expression on a character's face doesn't fit with what he or she says the next time the image is used.

Mark Wallace
08-04-2007, 04:17 AM
I don't much like this epitome of laziness: zooming in on an eyeball. Especially if it's a blank eye like Batman's when he's wearing his mask.

On the other hand, Keith Giffen uses that to remarkable effect (even with Batman).

It's Gene Colan close-ups I have a hard time getting to grips with.

Roquefort Raider
08-04-2007, 11:08 AM
On the other hand, Keith Giffen uses that to remarkable effect (even with Batman).

It's Gene Colan close-ups I have a hard time getting to grips with.

That's funny: my comment was mainly prompted by Keith's (over)use of the effect in the 5 years later run of LoSH! (Otherwise one of my favorite runs ever, I should hasten to add).

It just shows once again that readers don't agree on everything. Good thing, too.

Mark Wallace
08-04-2007, 01:31 PM
That's funny: my comment was mainly prompted by Keith's (over)use of the effect in the 5 years later run of LoSH! (Otherwise one of my favorite runs ever, I should hasten to add).

It just shows once again that readers don't agree on everything. Good thing, too.

"Five Years Later"? I have no idea what that is, and I thought I had all the LSH series.

I doubt anyone could argue his use of Clark Kent's and Batman's right eyes in Ambush Bug; pure melodrama -- in primal B&W, in the case of Bats.


But that gives me an idea for extending the thread:

What 22 panels do particular comicites get away with, that most other comicites screw up (or would screw up, if they ever found a creative enough spark that induced them to try to use them?)

My first shot would be the "double-header". Starlin uses it like it's going out of style, but never makes it look stoopid, e.g:

http://mwallace.nl/graphics/Captain_Marvel_27-15.gif

I dread to think of the kind of mindless, convoluted script that Thomasina, Brainless Steve Engelhart, Jephy-Baby, or pussy-whipped Roger Stern would dump on such a graphic.

Am I prevaricating again?

Sorry.

adam_warlock_2099
08-07-2007, 11:12 AM
"Five Years Later"? I have no idea what that is, and I thought I had all the LSH series.

I doubt anyone could argue his use of Clark Kent's and Batman's right eyes in Ambush Bug; pure melodrama -- in primal B&W, in the case of Bats.


But that gives me an idea for extending the thread:

What 22 panels do particular comicites get away with, that most other comicites screw up (or would screw up, if they ever found a creative enough spark that induced them to try to use them?)

My first shot would be the "double-header". Starlin uses it like it's going out of style, but never makes it look stoopid, e.g:

http://mwallace.nl/graphics/Captain_Marvel_27-15.gif

I dread to think of the kind of mindless, convoluted script that Thomasina, Brainless Steve Engelhart, Jephy-Baby, or pussy-whipped Roger Stern would dump on such a graphic.

Am I prevaricating again?

Sorry.

Yeah but it's Jim Starlin . . . is there anything he does wrong? :) (Yeah there is, but still, everyone has to have someone to get inspiration from.)

barking_frog
08-13-2007, 03:20 PM
Anybody remember that Alpha Flight issue "Snow-Blind". :rolleyes:

I'm jumping back to ten-day-old news, but I really liked that issue, as well as the "silent" issue of G. I. Joe that came out about the same time. I've read a lot of flack about these issues over the years, but can you fault experimentation? It'd be one thing if artists used "polar bear in a snowstorm" panels over and over as a cheap way out of producing actual product, but for one issue, as a one-off, I felt like it worked. It's one of few Alpha Flight issues I actually remember. :p

Roquefort Raider
08-14-2007, 06:18 AM
...It'd be one thing if artists used "polar bear in a snowstorm" panels over and over ...

That brings forth memories of the "What if?" issue where we have both "What if the White Tiger fought the Wendigo in a snowstorm" and "What if the Black Panther fought the Shroud in a coal mine". Good times!

MWGallaher
11-12-2007, 03:33 PM
One came to me today as I read a current comic:
The "splayed fingers" panel.
This is a favorite technique of Liefeld's (which damns it almost immediately) but it traces back to Adams. But seriously, who amongst us reacts in shock by extending the arm and spreading our fingers wide? Anybody?
Nope, me neither. I splay my fingers, maybe, when reaching for an orange. But it's not my instinctive reaction to a shocking development, nor is it an instinctive protective gesture.
I sympathize with artists who want to make the body language dramatic, but if you were a director and an actor pulled this sort of thing in a movie, you'd yell "cut!" very quickly. Comics artists should do the same when they've sketched out a panel like this.

Dizzy D
11-12-2007, 05:13 PM
Whenever I see plain black and white panels, I'm reminded of the comedy issue of What If (original series #23).

"What if the Silver Surfer, White Tiger, Night Rider, Iceman and Moon Knight fought Wendigo in a snowstorm?" - Plain white panel

"What if the Black Panther fought the Shroud, Master of Darkness in a coalmine?" - Plain black panel

I'm reminded of a European comic, but I'm not sure which one it was. I believe it was Tibet's Chick Bill, where the author inserts a white panel in the middle of a western face-off, with a note from the publisher {paraphrasing, because I have to translate and do it from memory]: "The author thought it would be funny to use the Hollywood technique (can't recall the name of the technique): "adding a bit of white" to keep the reader's tension high. We, the publisher, have a sense of humour and allowed it. We also hope that the author still has his sense of humour when he receives his paycheck and notices that we have "added a little white" when it was time to pay for this panel."

foxley
11-15-2007, 03:48 PM
I don't have an example to show but there is the 'extreme longshot' as used by Jack Kirby is some of his monster books, where the POV is pulled back so far that the panel is depicting the planet Earth with the relevant character's word balloons comming off it.

mambo66
11-19-2007, 04:32 AM
One of the more interesting threads I've ever seen on a comic book forum. Good reading.

mambo

Kid Kyoto
11-19-2007, 05:23 AM
The posing up a storm page, whether it's a woman doing something atatomically impossible to get her butt and breasts into the shot or people randomly pointing weapons, or just standing there gritting teeth.

Adam Warren mocked it relentlessly in his Gen 13 Bootleg and Magical girl Roxy books.

Kid Kyoto
11-19-2007, 05:49 AM
Here's a handy link to the original 22 panels that always work

http://joeljohnson.com/archives/2006/08/wally_woods_22.html

Reptisaurus!
11-19-2007, 10:09 AM
I don't have an example to show but there is the 'extreme longshot' as used by Jack Kirby is some of his monster books, where the POV is pulled back so far that the panel is depicting the planet Earth with the relevant character's word balloons comming off it.

What bothered me in later Kirby books were the EXTREME close-ups of people's eyes. Not even the whole face in a panel - Just the eyes.

berk
11-19-2007, 10:19 AM
What bothered me in later Kirby books were the EXTREME close-ups of people's eyes. Not even the whole face in a panel - Just the eyes.I always found that a pretty effective technique, when used properly. Paul Gulacy's another guy who gets criticism for it, but I find he usually knows how to place those panels in a way that adds to the visual flow of the story.

Reptisaurus!
11-19-2007, 12:39 PM
I always found that a pretty effective technique, when used properly.

Yes. I agree.

Honestly, I think an artist needs to have a little more capacity for nuance and subtlety than Kirby to pull this off.

berk
11-19-2007, 09:41 PM
Yes. I agree.

Honestly, I think an artist needs to have a little more capacity for nuance and subtlety than Kirby to pull this off.Maybe. I don't recall any strong feelings one way or the other about Kirby's use of this panel-type; I'll have to watch out for it the next time I read anything of his, and see what I think.

Kirk G
11-20-2007, 02:45 PM
What bothered me in later Kirby books were the EXTREME close-ups of people's eyes. Not even the whole face in a panel - Just the eyes.

The extreme close-up of the eyes (almost always the chief villian) like Dr. Doom, Magneto or the Red Skull helped to convey power, and pure evil.

Occassionally, he used it on Cyclops as he openned his visor, which produced tension, but it occassionally can denote panic, as in Namor or Daredevil, but I don't recall any examples of this in Kirby's work.

It works when used sparingly.


Edit: Hey! Does anybody have a scan of this page?
And John Byrne used it effectively, having learned the technique from Kirby.
(Can anyone cite the usage of this? I think it might have been when Doom was frozen in place by Terrax and he was casting about for a person to mentally trade places with...before being destroyed...)

Pól Rua
11-21-2007, 05:05 AM
How about the old "Everyone on the team has something to say" panel.

This was always the biggest flaw of the Sgt. Fury series.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v471/scottandkat/CBR/SgtFury9.jpg

That was a big early Legion one, too!
I recall the Legion of Substitute Heroes charging into battle, which each one shouting out exactly what (utterly ineffectual) thing they were doing to 'help'.

Colour Kid: "I'll change the colours of the ground and the sky, so it will confuse their targeting computers!"
Polar Boy: "Yes, and I'll use my power to generate super-cold temperatures to freeze their mechanisms. Oh, and look, Stone Boy has turned himself into stone so as to become immune to their lasers!"

Pól Rua
11-21-2007, 05:15 AM
I think the Classic 'Panel That Never Works' is the Three-Way Repeater.

Caption: Meanwhile, Across Town, Captain Underpants races across the rooftops.
Picture: Captain Underpants racing across the rooftops.
Thought Bubble: "Must get there fast! Only way... Across the Rooftops!"

...or... if you're extra ambitious, you could have a bystander saying, "Hey, who's that racing across the rooftops? By thunder, it's Captain Underpants!" for the rare-but-devastatingly awful Four-Way Repeater.

Roquefort Raider
11-21-2007, 05:26 AM
That was a big early Legion one, too!
I recall the Legion of Substitute Heroes charging into battle, which each one shouting out exactly what (utterly ineffectual) thing they were doing to 'help'.

Colour Kid: "I'll change the colours of the ground and the sky, so it will confuse their targeting computers!"
Polar Boy: "Yes, and I'll use my power to generate super-cold temperatures to freeze their mechanisms. Oh, and look, Stone Boy has turned himself into stone so as to become immune to their lasers!"


That's the kind of thing that comes to mind when I read about how captions are evil and to be avoided.

True, a caption that merely describes what is going on (and is usually pretty obvious) in the panel is just wasting space. Put it's no worse than characters having to engage in silly soliloquies to explain what they're doing.

The rule should be: "if it doesn't need to be said, then don't say it, be it in captions or word balloons!!!"

Alan2099
11-21-2007, 06:13 AM
That's the kind of thing that comes to mind when I read about how captions are evil and to be avoided.

True, a caption that merely describes what is going on (and is usually pretty obvious) in the panel is just wasting space. Put it's no worse than characters having to engage in silly soliloquies to explain what they're doing.

The rule should be: "if it doesn't need to be said, then don't say it, be it in captions or word balloons!!!"

True, but there's also the balance between not explaining enough and explaining too much. For somebody that's not familiar with Colour Kid, his dialog there would fill the readers into what's exactly he's doing. Otherwise a new reader might pick it up and end up with the impression that he can alter reality or something.

Kirk G
11-21-2007, 12:17 PM
On the other hand, Keith Giffen uses that to remarkable effect (even with Batman).

It's Gene Colan close-ups I have a hard time getting to grips with.

Yeah, there's a close up of a hand turning a doorknob in Daredevil 20 or so that just never worked for me.

Stan Lee supposedly asked what Gene thought he was doing, with a close-up on a hand turning a door knob, and then a full page splash of some nameless thugs crashing into a room. Gene claims that he was attempting to build tension, alerting the reader that they were coming to break in upon the hero.

It wasn't changed before it saw print, and Gene now points to it as his learning phase that almost cost him the DD assignment and work at Marvel.

EDIT: Hey, can anyone provide a scan of this page? I'm SURE that it's in the first or second volume of Essential Daredevil, if not in the third Marvel Masterwork DD volume.

(Frankly, I wasn't very impressed with the Aliens landing on Earth and freezing DD in a block of Ice from 27 nor the Matt Murdock dressing up as DD and waving a gun around when he breaks into a mobster hold-up that occurred about an issue or two later...);)

Roquefort Raider
11-21-2007, 02:30 PM
True, but there's also the balance between not explaining enough and explaining too much. For somebody that's not familiar with Colour Kid, his dialog there would fill the readers into what's exactly he's doing. Otherwise a new reader might pick it up and end up with the impression that he can alter reality or something.

You're correct, but I think it would have better if the necessary information had been provided in a caption instead of a word balloon.

The reader would have thought "Oh, so that's what Color Kid can do" and not "Oh, Color Kid can change the colors of things and he likes to state the obvious to himself".

My opinion on the matter may be influenced by my love of well-written captions, though.

Mark Wallace
11-26-2007, 11:46 AM
Yeah, there's a close up of a hand turning a doorknob in Daredevil 20 or so that just never worked for me.

Stan Lee supposedly asked what Gene thought he was doing, with a close-up on a hand turning a door knob, and then a full page splash of some nameless thugs crashing into a room. Gene claims that he was attempting to build tension, alerting the reader that they were coming to break in upon the hero.

It wasn't changed before it saw print, and Gene now points to it as his learning phase that almost cost him the DD assignment and work at Marvel.

(Frankly, I wasn't very impressed with the Aliens landing on Earth and freezing DD in a block of Ice from 27 nor the Matt Murdock dressing up as DD and waving a gun around when he breaks into a mobster hold-up that occurred about an issue or two later...);)

I absolutely hated Colan's super-duper comics, but, just to prove that none of us know what we're talking about, how's this, for a brilliant bit of Colan you-can't-really-see-what's-happening close-up:

http://mwallace.nl/graphics/dusk-small.jpg
If he hadn't drawn the coat buttons, there would have been no way of knowing what was being hit -- but maybe that's what makes the difference between a particular impressionistic gag working or not: Putting in just enough detail to ensure that the viewer's eye can tell what the Hell is going on.


... Or buttons. Probably.

Yeah. I'm going with the buttons theory.


NO CLOSE-UPS WITHOUT BUTTONS!!!