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  • The “Aristotle of Comics.”

    Posted on March 13th, 2012 halliedominick No comments

    I never thought such a simple concept could cause such a headache. I grew up reading the comics in the Kid’s Post and I still read them in the Washington Post. Some of my favorites growing up included Archie Classics, Calvin and Hobbes, and Dennis the Menace. To be completely honest I still read these same comics today. However, from a young age comics just came to me. I never had to think much about the complex ideas behind what I was reading, I just enjoyed them.

    After reading Scott McLoud’s “Time Frames” which is an excerpt from his popular book “Understanding Comics,” I have a new perspective on comics. “Understanding Comics” is “an exploration of the definition, history, vocabulary, and methods of the medium of comics, itself in comics form.” In short it simply describes “how the comic format works and its structures and techniques.” He goes in-depth about how this new medium does in fact have rules and regulations that one may not pick up on as a child when perusing the Kid’s Post.

    By far, the nugget I found most fascinating was our perception of time in comics. It is a concept that seems so logical yet seems so illogical at the same time. As we read through a comic we usually read from left to right. The amount of information contained in each frame tends to define our perception of time in each frame. A crowded frame would take a significantly longer period of time to read than a blank frame with only an image. As we pass from frame to frame we assume that time is continuing on. However, we have absolutely no clue at what exact time in history the comic is illustrating. We tend to assume the present but it may actually be the past. It could be a past or future memory or situation. How do we define now? How do we define the present? It is these situations that often lead us in a vicious cycle of thought with no end solution. I think after this cycle of thought, similar to what we experienced in class, it is only appropriate to take a brake and read comics for what they are.


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