Story Structure in Graphic Novels — American Born Chinese
Should I stand alone against the majority? Should I sacrifice my own desires for the sake of the group? Am I crazy for seeing the Emperor has no clothes or are they crazy?
This battle between individuality and conformity is very common in us all and we have plenty of stories to show for it: The Godfather, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, American Beauty, Glengarry Glen Ross, Office Space…
Often, you can tell you’ve got this type of story by ensemble casts and multiple stories about one thing, like: Ragtime, Robert Altman films, Boogie Nights, Magnolia, and… American Born Chinese (one of my favorite graphic novels)!
To see how American Born Chinese works as a three-act story, visit here: American Born Chinese Story Structure.
(Spoiler Alert: If you have not read American Born Chinese, yet, I will be discussing the entire story.)