If you're familiar with the comic strip format, then you're accustomed to finding the punchline in the last panel. And while sometimes, the joke can be expected, artist Ryan Pagelow always finds a way to surprise the reader. Since 2010, he has been the author of the dark webcomic, Buni, which features short amusing strips centered around a rabbit main character. And while the subject matter varies greatly within the comic, each strip ends with an unexpected twist.
Pagelow utilizes a wordless format for Buni, meaning there is no dialogue exchanged among any of the characters, though there is often text used in other ways. This subtle approach gives Buni a unique feel that makes it easy to read and enjoy without prior knowledge of the comic. In addition, since there are no speech bubbles, Pagelow has to rely on clear visual language to build the joke and ultimately land the ending.
There are many reasons for Buni's success, but certainly one of the most notable is how relatable it is for the average reader. Many of Pagelow's comics deal with subjects like procrastination, the challenge and relief of entering a new year, and the highs and lows of food, like eating untasty chocolate or drinking flat soda. And while the reader may start out thinking they know where the gag is headed, the Buni strip always surprises with a slightly off-beat conclusion.
You can take home a hard copy of Buni comics by purchasing Pagelow's book, read the entire series online via Webtoons, and keep up to date with Pagelow's latest projects by following him on Instagram.