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Hilary chose to delete the other characters, the coin-operated machine, and the text. She depicts one forlorn kid, coin in hand, staring in disbelief at the plastic-only gumball machine. Removing the clutter adds a sense of pathos and isolation, giving the joke more depth.
My version is visually denser, but the joke itself is less complex: everybody's happy here. Hilary's drawing introduces conflict — the poor kid has no place to go for his treat. It's a nice refinement.
Plus, a single character is easier to draw than a crowd, and any artist can appreciate that.
This is my second collaboration with Hilary. We currently have one more in the can, and are working on more for the future.
Next Friday and Saturday (August 12 and 13), I'll have back-to-back gags in Dan Piraro's Bizarro. Friday's spot will be my 50th Bizarro appearance. Congratulatory notes (particularly large denominations) will be gratefully accepted.