Monday, December 7, 2015

Guardians of the Galaxy and a Panel-to-Panel Transition

     In reference to the following double-page spread of Guardians of the Galaxy, Issue #2 (written by Brian Bendis, art by Valerio Schiti, and colour by Richard Isanove) I will be discussing the use of panel-to-panel transitions in relation to Scott McCloud's theory on moment-to-moment transitions.

     Moment-to-moment panel transitions, according to Scott McCloud, are transitions with very little "closure" - very little time between each panel (represented through the gutters), essentially. The writer or perhaps artist purposely wants to slow time down for the reader. Thus while this may not be done very often in comics, when it is used, it tends to be for a specific purpose. In this example, we see the movement of Hala's (a Kree alien from the planet Hala) head, a transition that takes up the span of a double-page spread. While this may seem excessive, in the context of this spread, it has a point. One that can even be seen through the images alone; her facial expressions. We can recognize these through our own perception of facial expressions, and note that they are most likely related to anger, sadness, and agony. We see the slow transition of what seems to be a stern and blank face to that of a screaming, crying (noted by the liquid coming out of her eyes, which while it may be black because she is an alien, we can relate to human tears) and anguished face.This moment-to-moment transition gives us a glimpse into the true pain she must feel, because rather than just showing this transition within a few short and/or small panels to get it over with in a quick portrayal, it is dragged out for emphasis and impact. Moreover, we can come to this conclusion because - as seen through the caption boxes and within the pages previously - we learn that her entire species had been wiped out and this is her reaction to that.  To that end, this example of a moment-to-moment panel transition is used to reveal and emphasize a character's emotions. 

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