Mysteries of the Arcana
It can be difficult effectively portraying background information in a story. Many attempts at presenting information dumps tend to fall flat on their face, especially when cast members should know the information being told (which is why so many fantasy stories involve “outsiders,” people isolated from the mainstream society, or from another world). In fact, information dumps are best handled in small amounts that portray the barest minimum of data necessary for readers to have a basic understanding of what’s going on.
Still, an inventive information dump can be useful, either acting as a foreshadowing device or even as a means of entertainment. One such example can be found in the latest update of the contemporary fantasy webcomic Mysteries of the Arcana with protagonists Chrys and Theresa commenting on the security of the Inn, which is some odd interdimensional waypoint between some 70-odd universes (including Earth). On the whole, it’s a pointless update (unless of course it is a foreshadowing device) and could have been skipped. The data itself is unnecessary, and the general feel of the update is that Theresa (the outsider) already knows this information.
What makes this information dump work is that final panel. Having Chrys lecturing Theresa would be boring and pointless. But having her talking to the security cameras because innkeeper Circe obsessively reviews the security footage is priceless. Even more amusing is the fact Chrys is leaving fingerprints on the damn camera lens when pointing it out to her friend. This doesn’t negate the fact this is boring and fairly pointless information. It could have been portrayed with a single panel when the data was needed. But by having it lampshaded by Chrys (who found the security lectures “boring”) is a good example on how humor can be used in information dumps, both to expand on needed knowledge, and to amuse the reader.