Comics on the Road to Nowhere? Pt. 9 of 11: "Bugs" Gone Awry, or References Only Brandon Lawrence Would Appreciate...

I suppose that having eight out of the nine comic pages we created in our road trip drawing experiment come out even halfway readable/enjoyable should be enough. That's a pretty good batting average (for the record, .889 rounded up, baseball card-style). This one, which I shall not even finish giving a complete (or even pun-filled) title out of my exhaustion and frustration with the page, just simply did not work.

Here's the strip, and then we shall discuss:


See? It's sad it didn't work out, because this was the other strip in which we involved my nephew Aerin at the beginning (see the last post). His drawings adorn the first couple of panels, and it starts off with a decent enough premise. But, things went awry with "Bugs" quickly. It just never gets any of that "oomph" going... and then I made the fatal mistake.

I slipped in one of my left-field references -- not so much arcane, but merely aged in variety -- this time to an old vaudeville routine that was popularized in different incarnations by The Three Stooges, Abbott and Costello and many others, often called "Niagara Falls" or "Slowly I Turned, Inch by Inch" or other titles. Personally, I know it as "The Susquehanna Hat Company," being more up on one Bud & Lou movie version than Larry, Moe and Curly's famous one. (Bud and Lou did it several times, including a "Niagara Falls" version on TV.)

So, I worked the reference in, but there were no takers. My brother didn't pick up on it, and I couldn't help him with it, or really elaborate on it until he was done with the panels. Thus, the doom of the strip had been spelled out. I closed it desperately with another reference to the skit, and this was after about an hour or so of staring blankly at the final drawing in the last panel, longing for inspiration. But, none ever came. I resorted to a fall-back plan of little distinction, and so we had the first abject failure of our experiment.

And, since I cannot stop with the references sometimes, somewhere Chico Marx is saying "I abject!" Or, at least I wish he would...

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