Comics: Algy HOT One-Pager by Irv Spector

Here's a quick single-page comic filler by Dan Gordon Irv Spector. (thanks to Bob Jaques for the correction!)

It's one of many one-pagers that appeared in ACG comics' The Kilroys in the 1940's and 1950's.

Big guy in sailor suit reading a comic book
Big guy in sailor suit still reading a comic book
Big lady dressed in a towel throws kid out of the women's locker room yelling FRESH!

I've always loved single-page comic stories, but when I started writing and drawing them for Nickelodeon Magazine, I really had to go "back to the books" and study them.
There's a real science to it!

Here's the full-page scan below. Just give it a CLICK and a bigger version of the comic page will open in a new window.
Algy Comic Page by Dan Gordon
I'm always amazed at how quickly the cartoonist can establish the setting and conflict. I mean, they HAVE to do it fast...there's not that much room to move. This example by Dan Gordon Irv Spector is pretty typical.

Hot sun kid sweating

In the first panel, he gives us the set-up. It's not just 100% on-the-nose,
it's over the top, too.

The sun is melting, Algy is sweating and tugging at his collar in a fine display of cartoon-cliche. Just to amplify the feeling, he adds another guy in the background who's also sweatin' up a storm.

The first panel is the only one with no border, which creates a nice open-to-the-sky feeling. An open panel at the beginning also makes it easier for the reader to step in to the strip. It's an open door.

By panel #2 Algy has the solution to his problem and we're on our way. Notice the panting and sweating dog that reinforces the heat.
The girl getting on the beach bus (see sign) leads US along with Algy onto that same bus!

cartoon dog hot sweaty near beach bus sign

There's no room for subtlety here.
This is not "art," it's communication. In two panels we know who, what, where, when and why.

Now, admittedly, the rest of the strip doesn't really follow up on the setup at all.
Pretty forgettable gag. But the drawings are nice, huh?

Anyway, I've got a few more  one-pagers to post in the coming weeks, so we'll see what happens.


Stay tuned for a couple short-short comics featuring Cookie's pals Jitterbuck and "The Brain."
jitterbuck plays the drums

Kid with big glasses cartoon comic


Anonymous said...

As much as I loved reading the stories in the funny comic books as a kid,..I also LOVED the one pagers too. I also remember when they would stick a one pager in the back cover of the comic or in the inside cover as well. They were sometimes funnier than the rest of the book. Algy is admittedly a bit before my time of recollection, but nevertheless, the humor is fresh and the artwork is awesome. Nice stuff!!

chrisallison said...

One pagers are AWESOME! Keep your insightful commentaries coming too, Sherm!

Bob Jaques said...

Hey Sherm,
The Algy page looks like it was done by Irv Spector.
Gordon and Spector drew in a similar style with slight differences - mainly in the eyes. I was corresponding with his son for a while and he emailed some scans of his father's work and the Algy page looks more like Spector's work than Gordon's.

Sherm said...

Hey Bob...thanks for the correction! I have noted the change and given Irv Spector his appropriate credit in the post. Now that I just found out about Irv Spector I gotta start looking for his comics too!

Thanks -- Sherm

Anonymous said...

The gag's swiped from the Marx Bros. movie MONKEY BUSINESS.

p spector said...

The gag's swiped from the Marx Bros. movie MONKEY BUSINESS.

Makes sense -- he was a huge fan of the Marx Bros., as were a lot of animators who grew up in the same time period.