Reply To: #8PgChallenge – STEP 2 – Feedback + Plotting

#562
philipspace
Participant

@thesurrealari

Feedback questions:

–Right now, the story covers approximately 24 hours of Mr. Stupendous’ life, but the action takes place over two day, from evening to evening: I am thinking of starting it with the action on P2, morning, or even just with him coming through the window to find his wife sleeping. this would open up some space later on for other things as well as keep the action confined to a single day. OTOH: I like establishing that he’s a superhero at the beginning, and the continuity of how he got his black eye, why he is so tired at work, etc is important and I think that the first page serves a purpose in the story, plus I really like the page turn between the last panel on the first page and the first panel on the second page. Thoughts?<

If you were to open with Mr. Stupendous entering the house on page 1 to find his wife sleeping, sans fight scene, it would free up some space for other events later in the story. A superhero sneaking into his house with bumps and bruises while trying not to disturb his sleeping wife has enough inherent context that additional explanation isn’t needed. The cause of his bruises are visually implied, and you still have plenty of action later on without having to compress so much of it. This still permits the panel-to-panel page turn from 1 to 2. He’s a superhero, his wife’s asleep, keep it simple.

–There are two other areas I’m considering replacing: The first is the battle on P6. The phone booth page stands on its own. What do you think of the superhero battle? I can cut that and do a different gag there. This would be instead of cutting p1, as I think it’s important to have some superhero action in this story. The other possibility is to compress the action on the last two pages. Once he gets the wine, the other “globetrotting” stops might be redundant, although they do have some comedic potential. The action on P7-8 could be compressed into one page, leaving room for both the superhero battle and another gag.<

Speaking as an artist, I would not recommend loading a battle scene with too many extra characters. Page space is your real limitation here. I’d say maybe four characters at most for this scene. From a visual standpoint your artist will need to have the camera panned back far enough that the reader can see everybody for at least the establishing shot, plus leave room for dialogue, and be readable and visually interesting. All on one page, with a resolution.
My suggestion would be single monster/villain, maybe 3 other heroes plus Mr. Stupendous. The more panels you have to squeeze onto a page, the less visually impressive it becomes. If you had a few extra pages to work with, that would be different. Keep it simple.

–Here are some things I’m considering adding: 1. More at the office, where the action might be better over more panels; 2: Add a scene during the work day where he hears a call for help, flies out the window to address it, and then returns through the window to his office (before falling asleep at his desk). 3. I would like to add something more with technology, as that seem to resonate with people here. This is a tough one, but here are some possibilities: He could see a picture of himself going into/coming out of the port-a-potty and then see it later on either his computer or the news, but I feel that this aspect may require a whole story to itself, and that there wouldn’t be room for all the needed character and situation development in the first episode. I am leaning toward making this the focus of the (potential) second story/installment, where it would get the space to fully flesh it out and give it the space it deserves. It also would have a natural connection to this story, which would link the two episodes, if the inciting incident in story two was cell phone or security footage from this story.<

For the office you could have a 3-panel sequence where he (1) flies out the window, (2) stops a mugger (3) shoots back into his chair fixing his tie, with his clothes slightly disheveled without having to squeeze too much out. I’m assuming this is what you mean?

I would suggest leaving the the “protecting his secret-identity” subplot to a later story. Maybe he’s got it covered, maybe he doesn’t (which is probably more fun from a writing standpoint). Keep it simple.

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