Zap! Bang! Pow! Comics Explain!*

Comic Book Cartography is the sort of thing I like, of course. Curator Half Man | Half Static has picked an enviable blog beat: cutaways, maps, diagrams, aerial views and other explanation staples from old comics.


SuperVoicePatternDetail

rushmore

I found this in a recent post from Khoi Vinn, who makes a great point related to this page specifically:


f4-bldg

Looking at examples like the one above, a cut-away diagram of The Fantastic Four’s futuristic corporate headquarters, I defy anyone to argue that our current fascination with information graphics doesn’t originate, at least in part, from the kinds of schematic graphics like this that old comics routinely dealt in.

I’d go along with that. And like a good infographic popping in your RSS stream today, this stuff interrupted you, in a good way. You stopped and lingered. I need to go down to my basement archives for some evidence, but I think Mad Magazine deserves some credit/blame for the infographics glut, too. I’m thinking particularly of the two-page spreads showing a huge scene, with labels and such everywhere.

Here’s one more, which belong on the Explainist refrigerator:


DitkoDiagram

(* for you non-comic-dorks, this was the title structure of nearly every mainstream article on comics between 1985 and 1995.)

4 thoughts on “Zap! Bang! Pow! Comics Explain!*

  1. Now that you mention it, as a kid I remember drawing those things kids draw – cars, secret hideouts, fantastical weapons – and as a finishing touch, creating those text callouts to various parts to explain what’s what. I was a (pre-) teenage infographics designer?

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