Little Nemo for a little audience

Last week while discussing Little Nemo Dr. Whalen mentioned how the comic never really appealed to most children despite the fact that Winsor McCay ‘s intended audience was young children. I was actually surprised to learn that Little Nemo was purposefully meant for children. The amount of near death experience Nemo faces would surely have bothered me as a child. However there were oblivious signs that Little Nemo was not fully intended for adults either. For instance the dialogue and simple nature of the story are more typical for a younger audience. Yet I considered the artwork being so detailed and complex that it surely catered to an older audience. Winsor McCay’s artwork was so detailed and at times complex that it seemed beyond the grasps of a younger audience to fully appreciate. In class another student, pardon me for not remembering who exactly said it, mentioned that they thought that Little Nemo was a comic strip that was set up to be read aloud to younger children. Personally to me this seems to be the most logical set up for this strip. The simple story line appealing to the younger portion of the audience while the art was intended to engage the minds of the older portion of the audience. The Little Nemo pages seemed to be experiences that would be very group oriented. Sure Little Nemo was going to fail each and every week however you never knew just how he was going to wake up this time. Although it was probably going to be due to cowardice or being frightened about ninety nine percent of the time. After our discussions in class I went back to look over some of the early Little Nemo comics again. There seemed to be an extra entertainment in reading them aloud and really zooming in on the individual panels. In each panel of each comic there were often small details that I had missed in earlier readings and it was a real delight to go take a deeper look. While the same ending everyday stayed tedious the over all format of the pages were a continual entertainment for everyone I shared them with.

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