Daedalus vs. FutureBot | Yonkoma & Fumetti Experiment

Screenwriting guru Sid Field is known for his autocratic adherence to the proverbial three-act structure but few beyond manga artists employ the even more demanding 4-cell Yonkoma structure for visually-driven narrative. Like many Japanese art forms (like, um, haiku and, er, sushi), Yonkoma puts an emphasis on economy. Behold, the four basic concepts (liberally adapted from Wikipedia, natch), codified in the early 20th century.

Ki ? Sets the scene, establishes the characters and setting and perhaps alludes to looming ethos.
Sh? ? The second panel introduces the conflict while elaborating on the above
Ten ? The climatic Battle Royale.
Ketsu ? The conclusion.

Meanwhile, the Italians were cooking up a comic form that favored photography over illustration dubbed fumetti, Italian cartoon jargon for talk-bubbles, which suggest ?puffs of smoke? to the artisti del libro di fumetti and were applied to the photos a la comic characters. The result, fotoromanzi, or ?photonovels? are the result.

http://www.flickr.com/slideShow/index.gne?set_id=72157625241727406
Created with flickr slideshow from softsea.

At FMRL, photographer Ryan Lely and I thought we?d combine the yonkoma and fumetti forms in an attempt to present a cogent narrative in a mere four photographs illuminated with simple text. The result of the pairing (which sounds like a? yakuza-meets-mafia buddy comedy) is Daedalus vs. FutureBot is to the right (based on a true story). Will we impress Syd Field? Certainly not as much as ourselves.