Art from ‘Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art’ by Scott McCloud.
Gobbledygeek episode 363, “Four-Color Flashback: Understanding Comics,” is available for listening or download right here and on iTunes here.
For Four-Color Flashback 2019, Paul and Arlo are venturing beyond the realm of superheroes and into the wide world of comics many Americans never visit. To first appreciate comics, though, it’s important to understand their capabilities. There’s nowhere better to turn than Scott McCloud’s seminal 1993 tome Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art. It’s an academic, analytical study of the comics form–but it’s also a friendly, entertaining, flat-out fun read. Paul and Arlo discuss why everyone should read Understanding Comics, how it influenced the way they read comics, the concept of closure, and the digital revolution.
Next: witchcraft, murder, and all that jazz in a musical Geek Challenge. Arlo must watch Disney’s 1971 Angela Lansbury vehicle Bedknobs and Broomsticks, while Paul is tasked with 2002’s Renee Zellweger showcase Chicago.
(Show notes for “Four-Color Flashback: Understanding Comics.”)
In our latest episode, Paul and I mentioned a number of comics recommendations for beginners in a variety of genres. However, we also mentioned that we had to pare down our lists significantly so that the topic would even approach being manageable. Here, as promised, are our other selections.
FANTASTIC FOUR #232-293 (John Byrne)
After his legendary Uncanny X-Men run, John Byrne took over Marvel’s first family, the Fantastic Four. Cinematic storytelling, emotional character shake-ups, shocking betrayals. And he grew up Sue Storm, taking her from the Invisible Girl to the Invisible Woman.
Gobbledygeek episode 46, “Tights of Spandex, Flights of Fantasy, Slices of Life,” is available for listening or download right here. Endeavoring to enlighten the non-comics-reading portion of their audience, Paul and AJ offer up a sort of Comics 101 class: twenty-seven recommendations for beginners in five different categories. From superhero fare like Batman: Year One to webcomics like The Perry Bible Fellowship; from the engrossing autobiography Blankets to the fantasy epic Fables; from the zombie opus The Walking Dead to the boy-and-his-tiger opus Calvin and Hobbes; we’ve attempted to cover most of the bases. In addition to all o’ that, you’ve also got your news; your upcoming DVD releases; Paul’s takes on the first issues of new comics Xombi, Venom, Sigil, and Ruse; and AJ’s thoughts on the films Unstoppable, Due Date, and LennonNYC.
Next: we’ll discuss fictional worlds we’d want to live in.
(Show notes for “Tights of Spandex, Flights of Fantasy, Slices of Life.”)