Now and then a cartoonist seems to enjoy a particular scene that does not really fit into the story, but that’s just too funny to leave out. Since they don’t want to disturb the general flow or the rhythm of the narrative, they will try to compress the scene as much as possible, often resorting to the POMP™, or Page Of Many Panels. I’m going to try and find some of my favorite examples, and present them to you on Fridays.
This first one is from Hergé’s L’Affaire Tournesol, Tintin’s return to earth after the moon saga. While chasing Tournesol’s kidnappers, Tintin and Haddock find themselves on a bus with an umbrella that’s not theirs, and a band-aid. The first is disposed of quite quickly, the other is a different matter. The scene is very much at odds with the rest of the story, a straightforward action adventure, but it is classic slapstick, and as such a callback to Hergé’s earliest books. And Haddock’s smile has never been broader (without alcohol).
Image © Hergé / Moulinsart 2021 – All rights reserved. Used for citation purposes.