Graphic Novel Review: Jake Bailey

Page 113 in “The Sandman Preludes and Nocturnes” By Neil Gaiman

The story I choose to read is “The Sandman Preludes and Nocturnes” by Neil Gaiman. The story itself is about the younger brother of death (The Sandman I believe) is imprisoned by a group of people through a ritual until he is eventually let free and must search for his items of power through hell, earth, and the dreamland. Eventually fighting the crazed shell of a man who obtains his ruby which holds his power, attempting to take over his realm. Overall I would call the iconography very dark and depressing but at the same time, very colorful. There is a lot of gore in this book and some of the scenes are extremely graphic, it almost seems like one of the DC superhero stories grew up a lot and became this. As far as in relation to “Understanding Comics” there a lot of aspect to aspect and action to action that works extremely well as this story cuts to many different places and scenarios as it tells the story, as well as leaving a lot up to the interpretation of the reader to what happened and who lived. Also, there is almost no consistent panel size and structure as everything is laid out differently and it really catches your eyes and the crudeness of the gutters help bring the effect and feelings I believe the author was going for.

Scene 20 from Scott McCloud’s “The Right Number Part One”

When looking at digital comics, the thing that jumped out to me was that the story and the action always seemed to move faster online than in print which I think in turn makes noticing the closure a lot more prominent in these digital comics. Also, with digital versus print, I saw that the digital comics where a lot more creative on how they presented themselves. While print comics normally stick to a page by page style, I saw comics by Scott McCloud where the panels were arranged on a chessboard or panels were hidden within each other as seen here. Overall, I would say digital comics challenge the idea of closure and gutters more by trying to find these interesting ways to present themselves as they are not able to do a panel by panel, page by page as easily as they can in print.

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