Our pal Seth Hahne, of GoodOKBad fame, came up with this 31 Days of Comics challenge, one of those things where each day of the month you’re given a different category that you then make a choice of a comic to fill that category. We did it last year and I figured it would be a fun bit to do again, so here we are! Click here to see each of the categories so far!
We continue with Day 28, which is a Comic For Kids
Read on for my pick and then you can share yours!
Last year I went with Ted Naifeh’s Courtney Crumrin.
This year, I’ll go with Volume 1 of Caanan Grall’s Max Overacts, which collects the first 140 or so strips from the series (plus lots of extras!).
Volume 1 quickly identifies the characters and their personalities in just the first three pages…
In just a few pages, Grall delivers what is essentially a fully developed character in Max, the rambunctious, precocious (and yes, overacting) young boy whose antics will undoubtedly charm us the entire book. We also meet Janet, Max’s “leading lady,” a child actress in her own right (who actually works professionally – her mother is an actress, as well). Plus, we meet Max’s ventriloquist dummy as well as his “unplanned” older sister, Andromeda.
In the book, these three strips are followed up by the first of a series of strips unique to the book called Andidistraction, which spotlight Max’s sister, Andromeda. These strips really add a great deal of flavor to the series, as Grall alternates between one-off humor bits starring Andi and extensions of the current plot in the strip, only from Andi’s perspective.
For instance, take this bit from Halloweeen…
An Andistraction strip directly follows it in the book showing more of Andi’s interactions with James (who happens to be the older brother of Janet, by the way).
Early on in the book, the strips tend to be of the one-off variety, with common stories being about Max’s over-imaginative self either getting himself into some mischief or amusing himself in an otherwise boring situation.
Here’s a notable example of the first…
and here’s a notable example of the second…
Max’s relationship with Janet is a major part of the strip, as well. Max adores her and she plays hard to get quite well while still obviously enjoying Max’s company. One of the cutest strips follows Max getting angry when he sees pictures of Janet on vacation hanging out with another boy. He calls her on it and she tells him it was her cousin. Max knows how to apologize in style, though…
Click here to buy the book. It’s $28 with shipping included, but the book is HUGE. 164 pages and the pages are long, so that the strip format does not seem cramped.
Click here to read the more recent strips in the series.
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