Sunday, October 4, 2009
boop.Page Analysis Complete.beep
(that's a weird post title)
any way the page I'll be writing a massive love fest to is from Jin & Jam #1 from Hellen Jo and sparkplug books, which is a small independent comics publisher from portland OR. First off I like this entire book, from the Taiyou Matsumoto quote at the start to its back cover doodles, its good stuff. I picked this page to showcase because the book's fight is where I feel Jo's artistic and design prowess really start to move up. What grabs me most for the fight scenes is Jo's choice to switch over to heavy black for all backgrounds. Until this point of action we've had very open clean white backgrounds, so the switch makes the scene feel very enclosed and gives it a different emotion. As opposed to normal manga fight sequences which are very decompressed whne it comes to action (and story), this one moves very quickly and lacks a lot of conscious choreography. On the other hand over half the page's panels are diagonaly layed out which is typical of manga, but this is the first time we see them in the book. I wouldnt nessecarily call this manga either, the books feels a lot like the hybrids you find of american authors whose work pulls from their cultural heritage but only as tools to work with. My favorite thing about the page has to be the text in panel two, the design of the "yes" which is coming out of Jin's mouth is fantastic. The technique is used a few other times in the book but this one really jumped out at me (I imagine Jin really stretching the sound out as she says it for some reason, yeessss!!!) If we have to get critical at all the bottom right corner is the only place I would tighten up or rethink. I love the explosion of material and detail, but I cant seem to get past the fact I feel a little left out on exactly what action is happening. It may appear more obvious to other readers but it looks to me like Jin is throwing the girl through the "floor" of the panel, or she's just wrecking shop into a random box that we as the reader had no previous indication was even there. Still, the brilliance of the "yes" and design of the page's top right panel makes up for anything else the page may do wrong for me. The book runs for about 5 bucks and if you're in portland I recommend heading to Cosmic Monkey on sandy blvd and snagging a copy for yourself, side note: the book also has what may be one of my favorite characters, a cop straight out of Reno 911 who lassos and beats teenagers for quote " being fucking annoying!"