Friday, August 5, 2011

Phonogram - Are You Listening? - Grant McLaughlin

We find ourselves in Chloe's apartment, along with her recentish boyfriend, Brian (new characters). Both characters are phonomancers. Both are youngish twenty-somethings. Both are kind of nervous in the way that recent couples often can be.

1 – Panels 1 and 2 are one complete image cut down the middle by the gutter to divide the scene. Brian sits on Chloe's bed in her room, supporting himself by casually leaning back on one arm. His body language seems to be relaxed and at ease, but there is a hint of agitation on his face.

BRIAN: This is ridiculous.

2 – Across from Brian, Chloe stands at her record player, getting ready to put on a new album. Also seemingly relaxed, she looks over her shoulder at Brian, wearing an expression of determination.

CHLOE (1): This is far from ridiculous! I am about to share my absolute, all-time favourite album with you. This has to be perfect.

CHLOE (2): So close your eyes already.

3 – Back to Brian. A straight on shot, focusing on his upper body and face. He's still on the bed, but he is now covering his eyes with one hand. He wears a devious, but playful grin.

BRIAN: Alright, alright. No need to freak out about it.

4 – Close up on the record player. The needle is down and the record is starting up.

BRIAN (off-panel): It's only music after all.

5 – This panel is inset on the left hand side of panel 6, which takes up the bottom third of the page. Chloe has crossed the room and is now standing just in front of Brian. The panel is a close-up of their faces, cut off just above the nose and going a bit below the chin. Brian wears his same grin. Chloe also wears a grin, though hers is far more fun and playful. It is an intimate gesture. She's probably going in for a kiss, if not something more.

CHLOE: Come on, Brian.

6 – Outside shot centred on Chloe's apartment building, with other houses and buildings in the neighbourhood visible.

CHLOE (off-panel): ...we both know it's so much more than that.


  1. Pardon my ignorance, as I know nothing of Phonogram besides what I have read on the web, but are these two pre-existing characters? Also, I wasn't too clear on how music played a role. Does Chloe's favourite album give her confidence, or is she simply sharing her feelings through the songs on the album?

    Besides that, I love the way you effortlessly write detail into your scripts. Your panel descriptions flow brilliantly. I shall be studying them a lot closer.

  2. Grant - this is a sweet page. It's nice and simple and I love that panel of the lips - that's pretty cool.

    My major edit would be, make Chloe says less in Panel 2. I know she's "freaking out" as Brian says but all those words make me hate her for some reason and I actually want to like her. Like them both. So shut her up a little and we'll all be friends.

  3. Thanks for the kind words, gents. I'm glad you guys liked the panels - spent a good chunk of time deciding how to organize and lay them out.

    @Ben - They are both new characters (minor edit to make that explicit). I would say that there wasn't necessarily any magic at play in this piece. It's more about opening up to others, although the last lines could be seen as a comment on music's power (both in the world of Phonogram and our own, if you will).

    @Ryan - Fair criticism. Hadn't thought of it that way, but I can see what you mean. Could have pared down her dialogue a tad. A lesson for next time.

  4. Nice panel descriptions on this one and I liked the cutaway to outside in the last panel.

    There's some good dialogue on this one too, though Panel 2 may be a bit heavy on it considering it's a six panel page.


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