Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Private Detective Kapil

I went to the Bookworm second hand book shop after a really long time this Sunday. I used to go there often in my early days of college. I remembered very well where the old comics were stacked up and in no time I was flipping through old and new comic books. My hands stopped at this comics titled as 'Private Detective Kapil - Thieves of Shalimar.' The edges of the book were wrinkled and the book cover very well made you aware that this piece belonged to the 90's and I being a kid of 90s grabbed this copy with much joy.

The typography done in its single point perspective, hand painted cover illustration and its parallel drawn perspective lines share the highlights of the local book shop illustrations. If you observe the cover well enough, you will notice how every inch of the space drawn has a mathematical instinct to it. Every action, shape...even the shadows are measured in its quality.
S.Chand & Company own the publishing rights (yes, the publishing house whose text books you must have mugged up during your tenth boards).
Now, lets go inside the book and see what Kapil and his gang have to offer to the readers.

Reading in between the lines and frames is not allowed here. No chance... you can let your imagination roll. Detective Kapil likes to think it loud. So, if you thought you will see some Shaun Tan kind of motion through images then you have a surprise. Detective Kapil cuts the long story short and helps you out by explaining each and every step of his actions.

And here look at our drunkard informer of police. Even with good number of glasses down, his HIC...going loud, he can balance the bottle on his palm. Caution: Please don't try this at home.
The colours matter alot when dealing with the comics of 90's. The flamboyant freedom with which its splashed around really sets the tone for the reading. No negative and positive space rubbish and no painful hours for drawing backgrounds because we have all the colours for you.

And If you look at the third frame here, you can notice that the comic artist has tried to venture into the areas of abstract art and cubism. But, just a subtle touch of it...just one circle does the trick.

Lets not ignore the acrobatic skills of our protagonist and by no means he wants to hide his talents. Show Off. Thankfully, here he chooses to think about it and not stating it.
Don't worry. Detective Kapil hasn't lost his head. It's just his floating head that can do time travel and show you his reflection, analysis and how he cleverly filters the information.

"SOK" the new punch sound...again an example of the artist's brave attempts at breaking away from the regular usage of BOOM, DHISHOOM. SOK - precise, pinpoint emphasis of attack and it has that swiftness in its appeal.

And those who have read Raj Comics would be well aware of the use of stars in fight sequences.

This stuff goes deeper than Sherlock Holmes. Detective Kapil is enough for need of Watson and Gladstone on the side. And to your joy there is another story in the book titled as 'Private Detective Kapil - The Slow Death.' Deadly!!


  1. hahaha! a fine analysis, mr kumar... im in splits!

  2. A very interesting way of story telling. Good job!

  3. You have drawn a very nice and detailed study of the trend of 90's comics with a keen and penetrating observation.

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