Monday, June 28, 2010

Blonde Phantom – The Phantom’s Menace - Ben Rosenthal

This page is your basic three-rowed grid. The first four panels take place along the top of the page, but with Panel 3 joining Panels 2 and Panel 4 together. Panels 5 – 7 are all of the same size, taking up the second row of the grid. The last panel is a mini splash, taking up the width of the last line of the grid. Unless specified, the panels are all of the same size.

The following could take place in current continuity.

1. A mostly black panel, except for what appears to be a square window illuminated to the right hand side of the panel. It is back lit, with the letters “SDROCER” written on it.

TEXT BOX: “Here’s the problem with being framed”.

2. Same panel as before, but now a torch light is illuminating the words on the window of the door.

3. This is a much smaller panel, approx a quarter of the size of the other panels. Half of this panel is placed in the bottom right of Panel 2, with the other half in the bottom left of Panel 4. It shows a close up of the old fashioned rounded door knob shaking. The sound effect ‘CLICK’ is in the top left hand corner of this panel.

4. The door is open and light from the hallway floods into the room. We can now see slight outlines of many filing cabinets lining the wall the left. A desk on which a lamp sits is half visible from the left of the panel. Standing in the doorway is the silhouette of The Blonde Phantom.

TEXT BOX: “If you’re going down for something you didn’t do, you’re much more willing to break the law to prove you haven’t broken a law.”

5. A close up of an open filing cabinet. Fingers are flicking through the files, searching.

TEXT BOX: “Ironic, considering I earned my living working in a law firm.”

6. Same panel as above, but a file has been pulled out half way. We can see the start of a name written on the front of the folder – ‘Morr’. The rest of the name has not yet been revealed.

TEXT BOX: “But some things are bigger than the law. Love, life...”

7. The lamp on the table that we saw earlier has now been switched on, and light floods colour into the room. This panel shows The Blonde Phantom reading the open file. Her eyes are focused on the paper within.

TEXT BOX: “...and death.”

8. This panel takes up the width of the bottom of the page. It shows closer shot of The Blonde Phantom, with the file still open in her hands. We can see the full name on the folder – Morris Walters. We see her from her hip up, looking off into the distance deep in thought. In the background, a silhouette of a man stands in the illuminated doorway. The Phantom Blonde is not aware of his presence.

TEXT BOX: “I’ll find who did this to you, my love.”


  1. Ooh, I like this! Didn't click with me who Morris Walters is - Wiki'd it, and now I'm even more intrigued as to where this story might've gone. Good stuff, Ben.

  2. oho, someone used something firmly attached to her lengthy tenure as a She-Hulk character! Very good!

    Well written and entices the reader, it's basically all just as it should be, quality-wise, so my feedback is kinda just limited to praise. weird.

  3. Ben, I'd say this is your best work yet. Definitely an interesting page, and I really want to know what happened and what's about to happen. Which means you've done your job admirably. Good stuff. Like Flip, I don't really have any criticism to make.

  4. I like this page but I'm just unsure of one thing; who turns that lamp on? It feels like it's the guy doing it but then we get another panel and BP hasn't noticed anyone there and I figure she'd notice the light coming on. If she's the one turning the light on then how come she's always reading the file? I'm sure I'm just missing something simple but it's doing my head in.

    I like the simple noirish lines from her and the whole breaking in to read records is a trope that tells us exactly what we're after. Good work.

    Though, I wouldn't use that title if you want it to be taken seriously. You only reference something if it's good or if you want to lampoon it, and this is no lampoon and that movie was no good. Be like calling a seagoing novel Call Me'd be a bad idea.

  5. Great script, Ben. Love it's mood.

  6. I have to admit, I laughed at the title. Not much to do with the script, though.

  7. Thanks guys. Was my first ever attempt at noir, so hopefully I didn't disgrace the genre too much.

    @Ryan and Matt - I have to admit, I had no idea what to call this script. I decided on the reference to that horrible movie for two reasons. Firstly, it's funny. Secondly, one of the purposes of a title is to suck a reader in. I thought this little play on words would get people to read the script, especially those whom may not be interested in reading comic scripts (most of my friends). However I do agree it did not fit the theme at all. Ryan bought up a good point in being taken seriously, and I get that point of view.

    Oh, @Ryan - The Blonde Phantom turned on the lamp on the table so she could read the file (which is why I wanted it visible on the table in the fourth panel). My panel descriptions are a work in progress.

    As for where the story goes - I have no idea. As I said, this was my first attempt at something noir, so I stuck with what I know works.

  8. Don't really know the character, but I like the story

  9. To say you've never written this sort of thing before, Ben, I think you nailed the dialogue, which is most of the battle with noir.

    This has probably been said before, but I do think an artist would probably grumble at such precise panel instructions... but then, I'm sure they grumbled at Alan Moore too.


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