The Adventures of Superhero Girl
Running gags are often part and parcel of humor comics, but it can be difficult to get them right. Part of the problem is that the gags risk getting old quick, or make no sense to the reader. Thus the best running gags are those that readers manage to identify with in some way. Faith Erin Hicks’ slice-of-life superhero comic The Adventures of Superhero Girl has managed to do just this with Superhero Girl’s continual tendency to forget she is wearing a face mask. Thus she has walked out into public in civilian garb while wearing her face mask on more than one occasion. (Nor is she alone in this; a recent comic had her walk past a ninja when both were grocery shopping.) What makes this work is how often people can lose track of things as simple as, say, glasses while wearing them. And as the Dread Pirate Roberts said, “…they’re terribly comfortable. I think everyone will be wearing them in the future.” It works, and partly because Hicks can be as subtle with this gag (such as with the grocery shopping) as blatant.