Comedy of Errors by
Chris Tennyson of TENIME Art Studios
Comedy or Drama? Which makes the better Kamishibai story? IS there a better?
A good person would say that an existent Kamishibai story is a good story.
I, however, am not a good person. Therefore, there has to be a better one.
You're probably thinking, "What about the other categories?" And I say, what
other categories? Oh, you mean Family, Action, Science Fiction, and the
cream of the crop of genres, Horror.
First, let me ask you. What could possibly scare you, and still fit into a 1
3/4" by 3 1/4" space? And a good Action/Sci-Fi deserves more than 32 frames
of movement to make it a good Action/Sci-Fi.
This coming from someone whose next Kamishibai project is a Star Wars
lightsaber battle. But anyways there are only two categories. Can we really
divide all existing Kamis into two genres? No, but we're here to find out
which is better.
What would you rather say to a police officer who's just pulled you over?
"I'm sorry officer. I deserve a ticket. Please forgive me. (sob)" Or... "Um,
you're not going to look in my trunk, are you?"
Which is more important, pissing off an officer of the law, or cracking up
your passenger? From personal experience, though, go with the first one.
What does ANY of this have to do with Kamishibai? Nothing, that's why this
article is so damn long.
First we must analyze, what do we really want when we sit down in front of
our computer screens, and double-click on the little Japanese icon on our
Do we want a story that makes us cringe, cry and/or think? Or do we want a
story that makes us laugh, cry and/or wet our pants?
For example, pretend you've just opened "The Heroic Legend of Mad Monkey
Kung Fu", and you come to the scene where the monkey appears from the monk's
hind-quarters. What is your first instinct?
Well, your first instinct should be, "Gross!" But what is your second
instinct? Do you find it amusing when the Buddhist's, oops, sorry, the
Shaolin's buttocks separate, and the simian ejects from between them?
Do you chime in when the line, "People who talk in metaphors oughta shampoo
my crotch."-"You said it buster!" comes forth from your speakers?
Can a single Kami author produce both a comedy and a drama? I'm not sure,
but let's take Chibi Alex-chan as an example.
Who do you relate with more: silvery-locked Rowin Kastrada, who is lost and
unsure of who he really is? or Sapphire-maned Adam Ringo, who can never get
a break and is constantly chased by people who want to take his eternal soul
into the Nether Realm?
Would you rather feel sad for Rowin's unfortunate case of amnesia, or laugh
at the fact that Adam just digested Pomegranate's memories?
If you're as twisted as me, you'd probably say both. If not, then you got to
make up your mind!
Can comedy and drama exist in the same story? Apparently, according to Lisa
Liidemann. True, we're not touched by the sad, heartfelt drama of the death
of Helve and Miyouku's mother until the third part, but she does fit drama
into a comedy.
So, maybe there ISN'T a better genre. Maybe this whole article was for
nothing. Maybe I need my head examined. Maybe I can finish this article
without asking another question. Maybe not.
But did we learn anything from today's experience? Probably not. Did we at
least have some fun learning that Kamishibai is fun no matter what it makes
us do? I hope so.
So, for TENIME Art Studios, this is Chris Tennyson saying, "Good Fight. Good
Night." Wait. No, that's the end phrase to "Celebrity Deathmatch". Oh, I
know. "I'm Chris Tennyson, that's my story, and I'm sticking to it."
No, that's what Colin Quinn says at the end of "Weekend Update" on "Saturday
Night Live". Umm, let's see. Ooh, I've got it now.
"May the Force be with you."
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