It’s interesting to see in Jimmy Corrigan, The Smartest Kid On Earth, how in various pages, there are times where the frame is actually a stage with an audience looking at the comic as though it was a theatrical show. What’s more intriguing is how the audience is set to look as though they are in the 19th century, including the architecture of the theatre and their clothing. It’s almost as though the audience is looking into the future as the story of Jimmy Corrigan, is set well into the 20th Century.
There are several images that have similar feature like this. However, certain other images do the complete opposite where the story suddenly looks back on the past. In one specific image, in the process of Jimmy and a girl are running away from an Indian cowboy, they stumble upon ‘a rift in time’ where they look across a river. From the scene, it seemed as though Jimmy was taken away by the grand view of a large building under construction. All the settings, other than Jimmy and the girl, in this frame clearly have a 19th century feel to it, including the other people. For instance, near the building being constructed, there is a horse and buggy driving past the building while other residents around the area are all in coats, top hats, dresses, etc. Another interesting point to make about this image is that it has no frame, adding to the shock and awe that the reader feels from viewing this image.
These scenes of going back and forth are unique as they have no significant or direct effect to Jimmy’s journey and yet Jimmy still seemed touched in some sense from the way he looked at his surroundings. They also appear to be targeted to surprise the reader by showing something that appears both surreal but majestic, especially given the general darkness of the entire book.