Andrew Waugh and Gary Bainbridge want to play Show And Tell –

Published On December 10, 2010 | By Richard Bruton | Comics, Reviews

Show And Tell

By Andrew Waugh and Gary Bainbridge

This was a little something picked up at the recent Thought Bubble show. I’d seen Andrew Waugh’s work before with Coupledom, but Gary Bainbridge was new to me.

It’s a flip book, with each artist taking ten pages. And it’s intended as a little something to introduce the two to readers. And as such it’s a relative success, although having just these few pages doesn’t really lend itself to a real introduction – more a hello, how are ‘ya before it wanders off around the party once more.

(Andrew Waugh’s Madame Doreen, Medium, from Show And Tell)

Waugh’s Madame Doreen, Medium is a slight, but fair funny tale of an unexpected and misdirected haunting following a seance. The nosy naighbour gets a lot more than she bargained for and has to come to terms with a ghost who’s lost it’s way. But coincidence mixed with a little loneliness makes for interesting friendships as she finds out.

I do like Waugh’s artistic style, all minimal linework and nice cartoony expressions and he’s a nice turn of phrase in his dialogue. His other piece in Show and Tell is the three pager  “Big Things Hiding Behind Small Things”,  and although it’s funny, I do doubt whether it’s really three pages worth of funny.

(Andrew Waugh’s slightly throwaway three pager from Show And Tell)

Gary Bainbridge’s half of Show And Tell is a little more problematic to be honest. I’m not really going to talk about his three page effort here “Merry Fox” because it just did nothing for me. To be frank I couldn’t work out whether it was deliberately written to be confusing and deep or simply had become confusing by accident. Fortunately, his main strip; Nightbus: The Alarm rather redeems him.

The Alarm is ostensibly a round the pub table of four friends swapping rape alarm stories. But the first page sets up something completely different:

(Nightbus: The Alarm by Gary Bainbridge from Show And Tell)

Nightbus, as I found out from Bainbridge’s website is a superhero-ish tale of Newcastle’s nightlife. Which explains why there’s a man jumping off a building on page 1. From the looks of Bainbridge’s website he and his bald mate are superhero types. Maybe all four people around the pub table are, who knows?

But once we have that little leap of the roof, everything changes rather comfortably into a sedate, nicely constructed little conversation comic about rape alarms leading into a student life recollection involving drink, bricks, windows and rape alarms. It’s rougher than Waugh’s artwork but the contrast in styles is quite nice, certainly not jarring. Bainbridge shows promise with what he does, since the actual conversation dialogue did flow rather nicely across the pages with a good, naturalistic tone.

(Nightbus: The Alarm by Gary Bainbridge from Show And Tell)

All in all, Show and Tell is alright. It makes me interested to see more of both artists, although of the two Bainbridge has to do the most to convince me he’s got  enough in him to write as well as draw. But as an artist showcase it does the trick.

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About The Author

Richard Bruton
- Started in comics retail aged 16 at Nostalgia & Comics, Birmingham. Now located in Yorkshire, he's written for the Forbidden Planet International Blog since 2007. Specialising in UK Comics and All-Ages comics, Richard's day job in a primary school allowed him to build the best children's graphic novel library in the country.

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