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Panels from Apartment 3-G and One Big Happy, 10/14/04

Today we come back to our intermittent feature in which I talk about the cartoonist’s craft as if I know a damn thing about it. Mainly, I like the lines radiating off of the willful, dark-haired females in these two panels. Normally lines like these in the comics represent motion (or, in extreme cases, odor), but if that were true here, then these ladies would be vibrating like tuning forks with anxiety and/or manic energy. Actually, more than anything else, these remind me of the energy lines that shoot off of comic book heroes when they’re about to make use of some sort of extraordinary power. I guess when Ruthie starts emitting these waves, she’s about to unleash some supernaturally adorable malapropism. Meanwhile, Gabriella’s Gabriella-sense is no doubt triggered when Margo is about to get herself into some sort of trouble. It therefore is almost certainly going off all the time, which may explain why she always looks kind of constipated.