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Four Panel Friday: Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson


I heard a theory once that the best superhero movies are the ones where the hero is on screen, in full costume, the least amount of time.

The idea being that it’s what’s happening behind the mask that is the most meaningful.

I wonder if this theory holds true on the comics page.

Bendis’ run on Ultimate Spiderman was filled with these un-cowled moments. Moments where Peter Parker experiences the power of being Spider-Man, but also the vulnerability of being human.

From: Ultimate Spiderman, Issue #5: Life Lessons

By: Brian Michael Bendis

Pencils: Mark Bagley

Inks: Art Thibert

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Four Panel Friday (On Saturday): George Herriman’s Krazy Kat


A Krazy Kat Strip from January 22, 1926

Krazy Kat & the Art of George Herriman: A Celebration contains a number of Herriman’s original art pieces.

The Krazy Kat strip above, is “cut and stacked”. A layout method used to fit strips into different newspapers.

Krazy Kat & the Art of George Herriman: A Celebration is the best kind of book. It’s the kind of book you lose an afternoon to. You open a few pages to “have a look”, and an hour later you wonder where the time went.

From: Krazy Kat & the Art of George Herriman: A Celebration

By: Craig Yoe

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Four Panel Friday: Wonder Woman pays Superman a Visit


Happy New Year!

In the last 10 years, comics have become more literary. They’ve explored deeper aspects of the human condition, similar to the great novels.

It’s been a wonderful progression for the form, but its made super hero comics easy to dismiss as frivolous.

Sure, super hero books can be shallow fist fight melees. But they can also be meaningful.

Alex Ross and Mark Waid demonstrate this well as Wonder Woman calls out a graybeard Superman for being a scared, shiftless, ….you get the idea.

From: Kingdom Come

By: Alex Ross, Mark Waid

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Four Panel Friday: Seth. Winter’s Cartoonist.


Merry Christmas!

In my mind each season has a specific cartoonist assigned to it.

John Porcellino is fall. None better than John at depicting a walk on a chilly fall day.

Bill Watterson is summer. Watterson is an all season cartoonist, but his panels of Calvin and Hobbes’ summer break hi-jinks are unforgettable.

We’ll go Charles Schultz for spring. Charlie Brown is a baseball player, no question.

Winter? Which cartoonist leads us into winter best?

SETH.

The drawings in Seth’s classic winter tome – It’s a Good Life, If You Don’t Weaken. depict a frigid, contemplative, Canadian winter in a variety of settings:

A packed, pre-Christmas main street.

A government building taking in a snow storm.

A lonely house sitting in silence.

And a windy walk home.

World building at its finest.

See you next week.

From: It’s a Good Life, If You Don’t Weaken: A Picture Novella

By: Seth

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Four Panel Friday: SpongeBob Comics – The Paul Karasik and R. Sikoryak team up!



Our SpongeBob theme continues…

The joy of the SpongeBob Comics Treasure Chest is in the variety of writers and artists telling SpongeBob stories in their own style.

Like other “best of” collections it opens up the possibilities of discovering artists and writers you weren’t familiar with.

That said, Paul Karasik and R.Sikoryak’s cartooning skills are SIK!

Both have published notable works – Paul Karasik of How to Read Nancy, and R. Sikorayak’s Terms and Conditions.

But as we know, the pinnacle of any cartoonist’s career is drawing SpongeBob stories.

Note: I’m not sure which of Paul or R.Sikorayak wrote or drew the story, but R.Sikorayak’s homages of old super hero comics appear in every panel.

From: SpongeBob Comics: Treasure Chest , I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planktons!

By: Paul Karasik and R.Sikoryak

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Four Panel Friday: SpongeBob Comics, James Kochalka edition



Tolstoy.

Melville.

Dumas.

Kolchalka.

Yes, the classics should be read, must be read. But in-between reading the classics, SpongeBob Squarepants comics have their place.

Especially SpongeBob Comics written and drawn by James Kochalka.

Sidenote. SpongeBob the show first dropped in 1999!

From: SpongeBob Comics: Treasure Chest

By: James Kochalka

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Four Panel Friday: Aaron Linton’s Found Object Comics



Aaron Linton? A mystery.

His website is simple. A two page nav – Images and Contact.

No “about me”. No “start here”.

I dig.

No Twitter. No Facebook. Not even instagram.

I dig even more.

Only a collection of stunning images assembled with mixed materials.

His art is like stop motion animation on pause.

Have a look: https://www.aaronlinton.com/

From: Comics: Easy as ABC! The Essential Guide to Comics for Kids

By: Ivan Brunetti

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Four Panel Friday: Brian Roppel’s Force of Habit



Brian Roppel’s comics are action packed. His panels explode with movement.

Looking at his art brings back the same delight I got watching Nicktoons as a kid.

Based in Toronto, Brian works in multiple mediums – comics, illustration, and animation.

Check out his back catalog here.

From: Comics: Easy as ABC! The Essential Guide to Comics for Kids

By: Ivan Brunetti

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Four Panel Friday: Mark Connery’s A Tragedy



Mark Connery‘s Rudy has a long history. Rudy’s been appearing in mini-comics since the early 90s.

Mark’s comics are punk. His distribution is punk. His publisher – 2dcloud is punk.

As this 2014 Comics Journal review by Robert Kirby describes:

Connery, a Torontonian, has been producing his minis and comics himself, distributing them through the mail or anonymously dropping copies at punk shows, libraries, and on public transit, leaving a portion of his readership up to the vagaries of fate. Very punk indeed.

From: Comics: Easy as ABC! The Essential Guide to Comics for Kids

By: Ivan Brunetti

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Four Panel Friday: Stormy Weather



One of the best parts of doing Four Panel Friday each week is discovering new cartoonists.

Today, Erik Nebel steps to the drafting table. He’s currently at work “on a bunch of comics projects”.

What will he conjure up?

From: Comics: Easy as ABC! The Essential Guide to Comics for Kids

By: Ivan Brunetti