Welcome, you’ve tuned in just in time for our weekly feature “So You Want To Read Comics”, where we take interests in other things and recommend comics based on them. This week, we’re taking a look at a real staple of the television landscape: Sitcoms.
Sitcoms (short for situational comedies) started in the UK all the way back in 1946 with a show called Pinwright’s Progress. Since then, there have been thousands of new sitcoms, some good and some not so good. They’ve also expanded from being purely comedic. Shows like Seinfeld traded in irreverence and Scrubs had profound moments of sadness and grief. But even with all the various approaches sitcoms take these days, a good constant is that each episode will have a new scenario for the characters to deal with, even if they tie into a longer narrative like How I Met Your Mother.
So maybe you’ve finally grown tired of binging The Office, but you still want that fix? Well, comics have your back.
Spider-Man & Venom: Double Trouble
Writer: Marco Tamaki
One of the classic tropes of sitcoms is when two opposite personalities are forced to live together, think The Odd Couple or Two and A Half Men. In this comic the odd couple just so happens to be Spider-Man and his frenemy Venom. Due to some rent issues, the two have become roommates and immediately butt heads. The comedy really picks up though when Venom finds a way to switch bodies with Spidey. When it comes to comics, it doesn’t get much more sitcom-y than this book. The two central characters are consistently throwing barbs at each other, there’s wacky shenanigans, and it’s short enough that it feels like it would be about a half hour of television. What’s nice is that this series doesn’t rely on the long history of these characters, instead going for standalone interpretations of the characters with all the knowledge you’ll need present in these pages.
Writer: Meredith Gran
Artist: Meredith Gran
Publisher: Image Comics
Fitting into the same model as Friends, How I Met Your Mother, and New Girl, Octopus Pie is the ongoing tales of a group of twenty-somethings living in a big city. And, like those sitcoms listed, one of the key enjoyments to be found in Octopus Pie is reading as these characters grow and change while also getting themselves into plenty of sticky situations. Now, while sometimes in sitcoms it can be a little jarring when things shift from comedic to serious, Octopus handles these moments very well with a flow that closely resembles the absurdity of real life. Also, being that this series has ended you can be sure that when you start reading this you’re not making an indefinite commitment. But, there’s also five volumes, so don’t worry about not getting enough of these characters.
So what do you think? Do these recommendations make it to your read list? Do you have some suggestions of your own? Let us know in the comment section below.