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Tell, don’t show

The Middletons, 9/16/04

I think one of the cardinal laws of visual comedy is that often what the human mind can visualize is funnier than anything you could draw. This law is well illustrated in today’s Middletons. We’re free to imagine the steroid-enhanced middle-school behemoths who play for our heroes’ opponents at whatever gargantuan scale we find most amusing.

Of course, it would be funnier if our overmatched tykes had recognizable facial expressions that emphasized their plight. Admittedly, it’s hard to depict them as being wide-eyed with terror when the average Middletons character has eyes that already cover three-quarters of his or her face. At first, I thought there was sweat blob coming off the player on the left in the third panel a là Cathy, but it just turned out to be the date.

3 responses to “Tell, don’t show”

  1. Frank Willis
    November 14th, 2004 at 11:16 pm [Reply]

    They could have also reacted in the second panel. Even looking up would have indicated that the opposing team was huge.

  2. Mary Brandt
    September 30th, 2005 at 2:06 pm [Reply]

    I, for one, enjoy the three comma-like periods that are intended to form ellipses in the third panel. It looks like someone must have written it on their Xanga page.

    “2day we playd tese tuff guyz in ftball an it wuz reeeeeal hrd,,,”


  3. PsychoPearl
    August 12th, 2008 at 12:34 pm [Reply]

    So, does the fact that they turned into puppies in the second and third panels mean anything?

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