Hans. Booby! I'm your white knight.

I love a good bad guy. Villains just make a good story great. They are that external force of antagonism that just digs and digs, pushing our hero to the brink. I get all giddy seeing a kick-ass villain introduced into a cool story. My mind races to the end with all these thoughts of a climactic battle where this bad dude is going to get his. I'm sure you do, too. So, why am I writing about it? Well, I've found myself reading something over and over again, admiring the execution of how two villains are introduced. I'm talking, of course, about Hazel and Cha-Cha, those two, sugar-induced, Girl Scout cookie-loving killing machines from Gerard Way's fantastic The Umbrella Academy .

In the second issue of the story Dallas, we are introduced to these two sociopaths in one of the most disturbing, and perfectly constructed ways. It's an extended scene that spans over a discussion of delicious apple pie and Girl Scout cookie etiquette to a final kill order from an unseen mastermind. We quickly learn these two nut jobs are killers for hire, but, they have no qualms about killing for the pure thrill of it. This disturbing character trait is revealed to chilling perfection in these opening pages. In this scene alone they forget the reason why they have tortured two innocent diner workers, which was to obtain the secret recipe for their delicious apple pie. The scene is so creepy but so perfectly constructed, I've found myself re-reading it, admiring how these two freaky, cartoon head-wearing villains are brought to life. Of course, they get what they deserve in the end, and the way that is done is even cooler then their introduction. So, if you haven't checked out The Umbrella Academy, pick yourself up a copy, and if you have, well I'm sure you'll all agree with me when I say I can't wait to see what happens next to this awesome family.

So, those are my thoughts for today. Who are some of your favorite villains? I'd love to hear. Until next time...

Hey Dr. Jones, no time for love!

As a kid from the 80's, I love me some Indy. Who doesn't? I did this script as an exercise a few months back. A couple of ideas went through my head but I thought I'd do an Indy script about those lost years during W.W.II. I had a lot of fun with it. By the way, the awesome piece of art here is from a fantastic artist by the name of Mathew Reynolds. Here's a link to his deviant Art gallery http://batfish73.deviantart.com/. There are some cool things to see there. In the mean time, enjoy...

Indiana Jones and the Prison of the Rising Sun

Page 1: 4 panels

Panel 1: Wide, low angle shot looking up toward a jungle mountain peak at day. The peak is covered in thick, lush jungle.

No Copy

Panel 2: Wide, high angle shot looking down on a Japanese-run POW camp. A tall, wooden watch tower dominates the scene. It’s made from bamboo and other wood from the jungle. Several armed Japanese soldiers keep look out. On the ground below are American prisoners hard at work on a railroad line that is etched through the jungle. A small steam engine locomotive sits on the track with several open cargo cars attached to it. The POWs carry railroad ties, wheelbarrows, pick axes, shovels. It’s a scene of intense manual labor below. Armed guards are everywhere. Some are beating on a fallen prisoner. Others hold prisoners at gun point. It’s a desperate image.

Caption(Positioned at the lower left hand corner of the panel): South Pacific, 1943

Panel 3: Medium shot of a Japanese soldier patrolling the camp armed with a bayoneted rifle. He’s looking down at something that’s caught his attention.

No Copy

Panel 4: Angle on the legs of two Japanese soldiers who have clearly been killed by someone. Their bodies are hidden by several large crates of a camp stockpile.

No Copy

Panel 5: Angle on the soldier as he screams for help.


Page 2: 4 Panels

Panel 1: Large panel. Wide angle shot of a massive explosion underneath the wooden watchtower. The watchtower is leaning in mid-topple. Splintered wood, bodies, and debris fly everywhere. The concusion rocks the entire prison camp.


Panel 2: Medium shot of a group of soldiers as they run toward the explosion. They wave their arms, calling on other soldiers to help.



Panel 3: Angle on the group of soldiers as they are mowed down by machine gun fire. Their uniforms are ripped to shreds as the bullets perforate them.

Soldier: Gaaah!


Panel 4: Angle on a group of American prisoners as they emerge from the jungle tree line. Their machine guns are raised, still smoking from the onslaught. At the center of the rag-tag group is Indiana Jones. He’s not the Indy we know and love. He wears a prisoner’s outfit. He’s dirty and ragged, with heavy beard stubble. He looks worn from captivity. But he still has the look of a hero in his eyes. The men behind him seem to hang on is every word.

Prisoner 1: I think you used too much explosives, Captain.

Indy: Not a chance.

Indy: Come one. We’ve got to be on that train before the cavalry gets here.

Page 3: 5 panels

Panel 1: Angle on Indy as he strikes a Japanese soldier in the head with the butt of his rifle. Behind him, other prisoners rebel against the guards.

SFX: Thak!

Panel 2: Medium shot as Indy and his group of rebels fire on a group of soldiers trying to flank them.

Indy: Move! Get on the damn train!


Panel 3: Angle on Prisoner 1. He waves on to other prisoners. Behind him, the men help each other load in to the train cars.

Prisoner 1: Let’s go boys! First stop, Brooklyn, New York!

Panel 4: Medium shot as two Japanese personnel trucks (http://www.lonesentry.com/articles/ttt/pics/japanese-ww2-military-vehicles/fig3-japanese-military-truck-ww2.jpg) race toward us through the jungle. Both trucks are packed with soldiers.


Panel 5: Close on Indy as he climbs in the engine. He’s looking back toward us. He’s not too pleased.

Indy: Oh, great.

Indy: We’ve got company!

Page 4: 6 panels

Panel 1: Wide, high angle shot above and behind the speeding, rickety train as the two trucks race along both sides of it. The train rockets down the tracks in reverse. The prisoners open fire. The Japanese answer right back. Bullets rip in every direction. It’s a raging fire fight on board the train. A rocket is fired by one of the men in the truck. It impacts just in front of the train, sending dirt and debris skyward.





Panel 2: Angle on troops from one truck as they hurl grenades onto the train cars. (http://www.quanonline.com/military/military_reference/japanese/wwii_equipment/type97_granade.jpg )

No Copy

Panel 3: Angle on the Indy and the prisoners as they struggle to throw the grenades off the train car.

Prisoner 1: Grenades!

Indy: Get ‘em out! Move!

Panel 4: Angle on the train as grenades burst in mid –air and along the tracks.



Panel 5: Angle on a Japanese soldier as he hurls a large grenade toward us.

No Copy

Panel 6: Angle on Indy as he bats the grenade out of the air with his rifle.

SFX: Thak!

Page 5: 5 panels

Panel 1: Angle on the driver of one of the trucks as the grenade has landed in his lap. He’s a bit surprised.

SFX: Flop!

Panel 2: Angle on the truck as the cab explodes and the truck goes crashing into the jungle with its men on board.



Panel 3: Close on Indy who is quite impressed with himself.

Indy: Ha!

Panel 4: Angle on the side of the train as it is ripped apart by heavy machine gun fire coming from the sky. Sparks and chunks of the train fly off.


Panel 5: Low angle shot from inside the train car as a Japanese Zero fighter plane pulls up from its attack overhead. (http://www.aikensairplanes.com/blue%20box/bbi_21265.jpg ). Indy and another prisoner duck in the foreground.

Prisoner 1: Jesus! They’ve got planes now!

Indy: Well you didn’t think they’d let us off that easy, did you?


Page 6: 5 panels

Panel 1: Wide angle shot from behind a Japanese soldier inside the bed of the truck. He has fired another rocket that impacts the side of the train.



Panel 2: Angle on Indy. He’s got an idea in his eye. Other prisoners duck behind him.

Prisoner: It’s coming back!

Indy: We’re gonna need that rocket.

Panel 3: Wide angle shot as Indy leaps from the train toward the troop transport. He fires his machine gun in mid air.


Panel 4: Indy lands on top of the soldiers in the truck. There’s gunfire!



Panel 5: Angle on Indy as he punches out one of the soldiers.


Page 7: 4 Panels

Panel 1: Wide, high angle shot of the train as it is riddled with heavy caliber machine gunfire from the Zero. Tracer rounds rain down toward the tracks. Impact craters are forming all over the train and the ground around it. It’s a violent scene as the train limps on.


Panel 2: Medium, low angle shot behind Indy as he fires the grenade launcher.


Panel 3: Low angle shot as the Zero explodes from the impact.


Panel 4: Low angle shot as the fiery plane flies over the prisoners’ heads.


Page 8: 5 panels

Panel 1: Angle on Indy as he leaps from the truck toward the train.

No Copy

Panel 2: Angle on the dumbfounded truck driver .

Driver: Huh?

Panel 3: Angle on Indy as he hangs on the side of the train. He gives a crooked grin and salutes the driver in proper military fashion as the prisoners cheer behind him.

No Copy

Panel 4: Angle on the truck as it drives off a jungle cliff as the train heads out over a bridge.


Panel 5: Wide-angle shot as the train rides off into the sunset.

No Copy


Dream Project

I'm sure there are a lot of us out there that have that dream project you'd love a chance to do. Maybe some epic, sweeping Sci-Fi romance or a re-imagining of Howard the Duck. What ever it is, we've all got one. So what's mine? A sequnetial art story of the Rush classic Red Barchetta . Just click and give it a listen. It's such a visual song. I mean "Wind. In my hair. Shifting and drifitng. Mechanical music. Adreniline surge." just perfect lyrics. The imagery is so vivid, I feel like I'm driving in an actual red barchetta on a spring afternoon with Geddy Lee next to me slappin' da bass. I think this song would actually translate into a seqential story with the lyrics as captions. Granted I wouldn't be able to do any actual writing on the story, but I think it would be so cool to see this song come to life.

So, that would be a very cool dream project to me. What's yours? I'd love to hear.

Snow, Baby. Snow.

So, they're predicting about 42,000 feet of snow on the east coast. I LOVE snow. I mean, absolutely love it. There's just something inside of me that gets all riled up like a kid on Christmas Eve when it snows. No, I don't ski. I actually don't do anything even remotely fun when it snows. I just love the view. Very peaceful.

I'm having a lot of fun exploring the many talents of Final Draft recently. The software is just loaded with cool stuff. I'm loving the customizable features that you can play around with. They actually make formatting a script a breeze. Speaking of format, that's something I've been pretty rigid about during my career. With Final Draft, I've actually gotten to play around with it a bit. For a new script that I completed for a contest at the awesome Penciljack.com writing forum, I wrote the entire story in Final Draft. The format came out more like a screenplay then a comic script. But, I have to say, I was digging it. I've played around with a few more scripts and I'm contemplating making the permanent switch in format. Exciting, I know.

Now, something that has to do with story and sturcture. Sort of. I watched Zombieland the other day. Awesome. Laughed very hard and I loved the simple structure of it. Simple road trip movie with deep characters as they travel across the country discovering who they really are and double tapping some zombies along the way. I don't know why I'm talking about this. I think it's an excuse to talk about Bill Murray's cameo, which is the greatest in Motion Picture history. "I'm a terrible practical joker".