Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Power Man & Iron Fist - Brothers - Rol Hirst


Panel One.

Luke Cage is being burnt alive by white hot flames. Even with his invulnerable steel skin, he’s in agony.

CAP (Luke): Me an’ Danny, we’re closer than brothers. Certainly closer than I ever was to my own loser brother, this piece of $#!@ putting the beating on me right now.

Panel Two.

Elsewhere. Danny Rand (in traditional green costume) is sent flying by a blow from a fiery red fist – like some demonic version of his own Iron Fist.

CAP (Danny): Luke and I, we’re pretty powerful apart. But together… some say together we’re unstoppable.

CAP (Danny): They had to know that. They had to know the only way to defeat us…

Panel Three.

Luke is down, unable to take the heat and ferocity of this attack any longer. We can see his attacker now as a figure made out of flames, not letting up the assault on our fallen hero. It’s Luke’s brother James, aka Coldfire, but more powerful than we’ve ever seen him before.

CAP (Luke): …wuz divide an’ conquer.

CAP (Luke): Thing is, I know exactly who’s conquering Mama Cage’s only good son… though I sure as $#!@ don’t know how he powered up like this…

Panel Four.

A series of three small panels follows, detailing the continued assault on Danny Rand. Fist takes one blow after another, close and intense, from his flaming red attacker.

CAP (Luke): I just wish I knew who they sent after Fist…

Voice (off-panel): Daniel, Daniel, Daniel…

Panel Five.

Another blow sends Danny smashing into a wall.

Voice (off-panel): Ten years before your father took you on your first fateful journey to K’un Lun…

Panel Six.

Danny slumps to the floor as a shadow falls across him.

Voice (off-panel): Daddy dearest tried once before to access the nexus that would return him to his native land…

Voice (off-panel): He failed. He ended up somewhere much, much worse.

Panel Seven.

Final panel, bigger than the previous three, reveals Danny’s attacker. He is ten years older than Danny and looks like some twisted, demonic counterpart to Iron Fist. As well as the flaming red fists, the top half of his face is seared away to the skull – like some hellish mockery of Danny’s own mask, with additional “devil horns” sprouting from his forehead. He is naked from the waist up and instead of the dragon scar on Danny’s chest, he boasts a flaming serpent. The sash that hangs from Danny’s belt and from the back of his mask is also replicated here with writhing, burning, angry snakes.

This is Devil Fist… standing over the battered and defeated body of his long lost brother, Daniel Rand.

Devil Fist: Wendell Rand-K’ai lost his firstborn son to that savage and brutal place.

Devil Fist: It took me almost forty years to find my way back…


11 comments:

  1. Awesome. So descriptive. So I'm assuming Luke's brother is an actrual character, but is Devil Fist a concotion of your own?

    Was I the only one who thought it was a spirit of vengeance?

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  2. When I originally came up with the concept, I didn't know Luke had a brother. Then after a bit of research it turned out that his brother was a super-powered baddy called Coldfire back in the 90s Cage book. That made the script a lot easier as I didn't have to introduce two previously unknown brothers (which would have been too much of a credibility stretch). Plus, as Coldfire's powers made him "a being made up of white hot flame", it tied into the hellish Devil Fist character with amazing serendipity. Sometimes a little research pays off!

    (And no, I hadn't made a Spirit of Vengeance connection... but now you come to mention it...)

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  3. RETCON!

    The inverse PM&IF villains, nice. I can't help but feel a 90s vibe to this page, though, Maybe it's all the flames, or the snakes, or just the brothers come back, but it feels like one of those 90sa guilty pleasures that works, like Maxmum Carnage or AoA.

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  4. Man, that sucks. Was it really THAT bad?

    (I consider Maximum Carnage even lower in the gutter of 90s awfulness than the Clone Saga...)

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  5. Rol - you know I enjoy me some of the 90s cheese.

    But, yeah, that was exactly the vibe I got.

    And we try not to talk about the Clone Saga around these here parts - you'll give Ben ideas for his next choice...uh.

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  6. I've not read any of the aforementioned 90's comics, so I can't comment on that, but I thought it was a great action sequence.

    Oh, and congratulations on not doing a comedy piece like the rest of us :)

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  7. I can only echo everyone else's compliments, with one minor criticism: something feels off about Luke's dialogue. The phrasing, the dialect...it screams Ben Grimm a lot more than Luke Cage. then again, it might just be the singular "wuz," which I identify so much with the thing that I think of it as his second catchphrase. Besides that, the page is really good, and could set up a number of potential story arcs.

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  8. Ryan - I promise to try harder next time. ;-)

    Danial - my first inclination was to go the comedy route... I'm glad I steered the other way now.

    Aryeh - you may well be right, as Cage is written today. I think I was channeling old Power Man Cage when, yes, he did speak just like a black Ben Grimm. I think Bendis gave him elocution lessons. (That, or Bendis writes all characters with the same voice - his own. Hmmm...)

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  9. @Rol: I think I have to disagree with you on that. Cage and Grimm did sound alike at one point--during the era when most of Marvel's dialogue had a similar, expository tone to it. But characters evolve. During his most iconic period, Cage was a blaxploitation hero. You know that famous Power Man line? "Where's my money, honey?" Can you picture The Thing ever saying that? Maybe you're pulling from a different era than I'm thinking of (although I'm about as enamored with Bendis-speak as you are), but ultimately dialogue has to be true to the characters more than previous writers' interpretations. If you define Cage as "black Ben Grimm," are you really writing Power Man?

    That got a little too philosophical. On a more practical level, think about this--Luke grew up black in Harlem. Ben grew up Jewish on the Lower East Side. While the two neighborhoods are both parts of New York City, their respective cultures are extremely different, and this really should show in the dialogue.

    Whoo. Anyway. Just some food for thought.

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  10. Aryeh - I can't disagree with any of that, though I think, in fairness, (as you stated in your original comment) the sticking point here is the "wuz", which I concede is far more Grimm than Cage. The rest of the dialogue is less Ben - I'd never write Ben swearing for example, nor would I have him say "Mama Grimm" (it'd be "Aunt Petunia", natch). But yeah, that "wuz" was something I wavered on when I was writing this and you're absolutely right in that I made the wrong choice. That's the great thing about the feedback on this site though, you are all my unpaid editors!

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  11. Rol: I hadn't seen all these comments when I wrote my script and used "w's". The way I look at it, Cage probably speaks faster than Ben, who speaks louder and slower, though obviously with an accent.

    Anyway, Devil Fist is an awesome idea. Totally sold me on this script.

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