Tuesday, August 2, 2011

22 Manga Panels That Always Work

Inspired by Wally Wood’s iconic 22 panels. (I really wish I could find the guy who used those 22 panels to create a single comic story)

In the meantime, here's some common elements I've noticed keep popping up in Shonen series. I'm sure there's a bunch of widely reused panels that I've missed, but I chose the ones that would best tell a story, even if the protagonists keep changing every panel. I might do a Shojo equivalent in the future, unless someone else beats me to it first.

#1. Establishing shot

#2. Scene of normalcy

#3. An announcement from outside

#4. Running past a surprised person

#5. Walking feet

#6. Falling down

#7. Gang of three

#8. Defiantly looking up

#9. Scornfully looking down

#10 - 11. Two opponents staring at each other

#12. Presenting something from behind

#13. Slump of despair

#14. Extended palm / index finger

#15. Heroic sacrifice

#16. Cradling a dying body

#17. Manly crying

#18. A scream that dislocates the jaw

#19. Punch to the solar plexus

#20. Coughing up blood

#21. Waving goodbye from behind

#22. Hero’s face superimposed against the sunset (very rare nowadays)


  1. Presenting something from behind?

  2. "Presenting something from behind?"

    Yeah, this was the one I had the most trouble with. I envisioned a better kind of panel of this, where the presenter would make a sweeping motion to show the background. This is usually done by tour guides giving a general idea of the surroundings. It’s characterized by a large head, combined with an outstretched and spread fingers pointing towards the background.

    The problem was that I couldn't find anything that would show a villain making a grand gesture
    The closest comparision was Franken Fran showing the waste disposal unit in the 26th chapter, page 9. But I excluded her because, despite all her horrific operations and grey morality, I simply couldn't think of her as evil.

    I’ve currently replaced it with another panel. If anybody can think of something better, let me know, and I’ll exchange it.