Thursday, June 30, 2011
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
JJJ: You’re problem is you just don’t care.
JJJ: Yes, not caring is a problem, you slackers.
2. There is a girl doing her best to act like she’s not trying to see if the jock is looking at her.
JJJ: You put your brains in your pants and wonder why you have diseased thoughts.
3. Two druggies sit together giggling – maybe at JJJ, maybe at their nails.
JJJ: You think a patchwork of grass and LSD is going to expand your horizons when all it does is limit your possibilities.
JJJ: I’ve never eaten in a Soup Kitchen, myself, and I doubt having the honour of soiling myself while there three nights in a row is a truly enlightening experience.
4. A loser sits staring at the front of the class with a finger launched up his nose like he’s got an itch on his medulla oblongata.
JJJ: You couldn’t find your backsides if your fingers were noses.
JJJ: That’s why you have to vote for me.
5. The splash ends and we see what the students have been staring at, it’s a 17 year old JJJ running for Class President. He’s missing the ‘stache but he’s got the same hair and a short sleeve shirt with a thin black tie. On the board behind him we see ‘Class President Speeches’.
JJJ: All the way with JJJ.
Uncredited Class Clown: WHATEVER!
Alt. Script: we look 1 million years into the future and see that, yes, he's decomposed and probably fossilised. Less interesting, but you'd have to admire the realism or whatever.
A levitating, cyber-punk, spikey and dark, oily Daily Bugle is floating in a futuristic land of airbound buildings and flying taxis. The Daily Bugle sign on the front of the building is bright neon, as any sign in the future should be (natch).
JJJ(inside building): ROBO-BRANT! ROBO-BRAAAAAAAAAAANT!
Inside JJJ's(as he shall be referred to in this future timeline, because initials are futuristic as all balls) office, we have a darkened chair in a black-lit room, with a floating table in front of it. The true nature of JJJ's appearance is to be completely unnoticeable in this panel, to save for the reveal at the end of the page (which I'll hold out on you till then as well, for simplicity's sake). Entering the room (perhaps just in front of us, presenting an over-the-shoulder view) is Robo-Brant, an angular femdroid, a cross between a ventriloquist's dummy and an 80s businesswoman viewed through the filter of chrome robotics.
Robo-Brant(spiky balloons and robotic text): YES.MR.J.J.J.?
JJJ(chair): COFFEE! ROBO-BRANT! COFFEE!
Robo-Brant dutifully bows her head and moves out of the room. JJJ's desk starts to glow, illuminating the silhouette of the man's current appearance, best described for this panel as Robofish from the Timesplitters series of video games, with finer details to come with the final panel.
The full reveal. Illuminated by his desk we see JJJ as he truly is. An orb, containing his brain, wires and various fluid, on a frail robotic body. The orb has JJJ's classic flat brush haircut, and the thin chaplinesque moustache stuck dead centre on the middle of it. The liquids are bubbling and glowing green as he declares his ultimate desire.
JJJ: ROBO-BRANT! GET ME A CAMERA! AND A MAN! TO GET PICTURES! PICTURES OF SPIDER-PEOPLE! AND MORE COFFEE!
Monday, June 27, 2011
1. A podium sits on a small intimate stage. Flowers line the walls, and cover the coffin in the back ground. Behind the podium is J. Jonah Jameson. His head is down, hand to his mouth as he clears his throat. His shoulders are slumped, as if he is a defeated man.
2. Jameson has the same posture, but now grips a sheet of paper with two hands, which we can see just poking out from the top of the podium. His head still bowed as he reads.
Marla was a good person.
3. Same as Panel 2, with Jameson once again clearing his throat.
4. Same as Panel 2, with Jameson looking longingly at the coffin to his left.
5. Same as Panel 2.
Marla was a good person. She gave her kindness and love freely. Her affection and caring for her friends and family was beyond reproach, and we will never see another like her.
6. This panel is framed in the same way as all previous panels. Jameson is standing away from the podium, side on with the coffin. His hand placed on it.
7. The same framing as all previous panels, however the stage is empty.
For those of you wondering, Marla’s last words to Jonah were "Don’t waste any more of your life on hate… I love…” She died in his arms.
Sunday, June 26, 2011
A corridor in the White House. J. Jonah Jameson sits waiting to be seen by the President. He sits stiffly in his chair, hands folded on his lap, scowling at the world. A white house aide speaks to him from off-panel.
Aide (O/P): Mayor Jameson? Commander Rogers will see you now.
JJJ gets out of his chair and starts barking at the aide. He’s already pissed off at how long he’s been made to wait… and now he isn’t even getting to meet the president!? The aide shrinks away from Jameson’s outburst.
JJJ: Rogers!? I thought I was supposed to be seeing the President! I didn’t come all this way to see Steve Rogers – on a Monday! I have a city to run, I can’t be—
Steve Rogers (O/P): Jonah…
Steve Rogers stands in the corridor before Jameson and holds out his hand. Jonah reluctantly shakes it. Steve is smiling, patiently, it’s not the first time he’s faced up to one of JJJ’s explosive rants. Steve is in his Super Soldier outfit. (Yes, continuity freaks, this story takes place before he puts the big A back on.)
Steve: Good to see you again. Thank you for coming.
Steve: The President apologises that he’s been called away, but he’s put me in charge of the briefing.
Steve leads Jonah through into a large state room. At the far end of the room is a large desk. A figure sits in the desk, facing away from Jonah and Steve, looking out across the White House gardens.
Steve: As you’re aware, in recent months New York City has become the target of increased activity by so-called Science Terrorists such as A.I.M., the Zodiac Cartel and the Intelligencia—
JJJ: You don’t need to tell me – it’s my town! I’ve been petitioning the President to set up a task force and put someone big on this – Reed Richards or Tony Stark or—
Steve: Yes, Reed and Tony will be involved, but they’re both busy men. You’ll be pleased to know we’ve selected another leading New York scientist, from Horizon Labs, to run the operation on a day-to-day basis…
Now we’re looking at the scene from the opposite side of the room, from behind the desk. The figure at the desk has turned his chair away from us so we still can’t see who it is, now they’re facing Steve and Jonah. Steve is gesturing to the figure in the chair. Jonah’s jaw has dropped to the floor.
Steve: I trust you’ll give him every assistance…
Who’s in the chair? Go on, you guessed it. It’s only Peter Parker – wearing a snazzy suit too! He’s grinning a big toothy grin at Jonah.
Peter: Jameson… you’re hired!
Because the last thing thoughtballoons needs is any more of those @#*$! costumed vigilantes! What this site needs is a real hero!
A pioneering journalist and moral crusader!
The proud father of a courageous NASA astronaut!
An influential and respected political figure - the current Mayor of New York City!
The only comic book character to ever have been brought to life with 100% success on the silver screen!
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you... J. Jonah Jameson!
"Miss Brant, get me a ham on rye - and tell Parker he's fired!"
- Ben owns an arcade machine. Did you know that?
- Sime wants to buy every DCnU #1 - whether he will, or can find the time to read them all is another question but at least he's got a goal.
- I told Sime he could write a massive The Weekly Crisis post full of paragraph reviews of each of the #1s. The offer still stands.
- Ben owns an arcade machine. You knew that, right?
- I am indecisive and don't spend enough money at cons.
- Ben knows how to spend plenty at cons.
- Sime was there to see me back issue dive for ages and come up with just one issue.
- Yes, the issue was Daredevil. It was issue #380 - actually excited to read it.
- I bought Dave Johnson's sketch book and a wicked Marvel print from him.
- Dave Johnson was the nicest guy ever. So extremely nice.
- I chatted with Ben Templesmith and he's also very cool.
- It wasn't until too late I realised I need to get Templesmith to sketch Franken-Castle for me. One day.
- Ben commissioned a very cool Deadpool sketch from Dave Johnson. You can peep it below.
- Sime is off on a work funded international jaunt. Lucky bugger.
- I managed to chat with an artist and actually get his details. Another nice bloke.
- Ben is hilarious and I need to make more time for the man. Much more time. Sleepovers are called for.
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Caption-Hal: I’m just a fool.
Caption-Hal: They think I don’t know that?
Caption-Hal: But a fool is happy.
Caption-Hal: He rolls in his ignorance like a fat boar in his own squalid filth.
3. Carol walks into the room, she wears a trench coat over a dress. She’s gorgeous.
Caption-Hal: They see me a fool happy with his eyes sown shut.
Caption-Hal: Ha. A smarter man would be frozen with thought.
4. Hal’s eyes furrow, he’s determined, he’s angry.
Caption-Hal: No thought’s going to slow me down.
5. Carol holds her hand open for Hal. In her palm is a red ring.
Caption-Hal: I’ll break the sky over their heads.
Caption-Hal: My silent anger will kill us all.
Friday, June 24, 2011
Three rows of equal size. The first two rows both have 3 panels of equal size. The seventh panel takes up the entirety of the third row.
[WARNING: The following script may contain sexual references and is recommended for mature audiences :P]
This panel is simply a closed bedroom door. The balloons are coming from within.
Same shot of the door. Again, the balloon is coming from within.
WOMAN: My God, Hal, you're AMAZING!
PANEL THREE, HALF-PAGE SPLASH
From a low angle, we see Hal from the waist up. He has no clothes on, save for his ring, which he is holding up in a fist. It is glowing.
HAL: Nah, Baby, I just have a good imagination.
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Description: Hal Jordan is standing in front Green Lantern outfit in front a group of kids inside a classroom. Behind him, there is a chalkboard with the words “Meet Your Heroes Week!”. In the front row there's a kid with his hand raised.
HAL JORDAN: And so, I made a giant fist with my ring and knocked out the villain!
KID: Mr. Lantern, how did you first get the idea to make a giant hand?
HAL JORDAN: Uh...
Description: Hal Jordan is being punched in the face by Kilowog. Emphasis on Kilowog's big hand as it connects with Hal's face, which has a black eye.
Description: Hal Jordan is being punched in the gut by Mongul. Again, Mongul's hand looks huge compared to Hal's body. Copious amount of blood are dripping out of his nose and mouth.
Description: Hal Jordan is receiving an upper-cut to the chest by Batman, who is wearing some kind of big electronic gloves (think Dark Knight Returns, sort of thing). Hal looks in pain while there is a smirk in Bruce's face.
Description: Back to the classroom. Hal Jordan is now smiling confidently, while forming a giant hand that is tapping the head of the kid that asked the question earlier.
HAL JORDAN: Imagination, kid.
HAL JORDAN: Lots and lots of imagination.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Close on the severed middle finger of Hal Jordan, laid out on a white table. The finger is still clad in the white Green Lantern glove – tattered and bloodied at the severed end – and the ring is still attached.
VO1 (off-panel): How on earth did you get it?
VO2 (off-panel): Yellow Stihl saw.
A red hand reaches down and pulls the ring from Jordan’s finger.
VO1 (O/P): I thought the rings were free of the yellow impurity nowadays?
VO2 (O/P): So did Jordan. But Parallax is never completely defeated. It only took one moment’s hesitation…
Sinestro stands holding the ring. The severed finger is still on the table in front of him. He is in a white room, very sci fi, some kind of space station. We can’t see who he’s talking to.
VO1 (O/P): What did you do with the body?
Sinestro: Fed it to the Calvarian Cuttlefish.
VO1 (O/P): They’ll eat Green Lantern?
Sinestro: If you chop it up finely.
Sinestro gets down on one knee. He’s looking up at us / at the person he’s talking to.
VO1 (O/P): So what are you planning on doing with it now?
Sinestro: I thought I might give it to you… if you’d be so kind…
Finally we see who Sinestro is talking / proposing to. It’s Carol Ferris, dressed as Star Sapphire. She seems surprised… but there’s a wicked smile on her face too as Sinestro slips the ring onto her finger.
Sinestro: Carol Ferris… will you marry me?
Carol: Oh, Thaal… I thought you’d never ask.
Monday, June 20, 2011
Simple enough concept, Hal Jordan has no imagination. Because he is a boring fool with no personality to speak of. Nothing fancy, just a simple light-hearted joke to warm myself back up.
Hal Jordan is facing a titanic rock monster, looming over him as he stares up at it from the ground.
Close-up on Hal as he rubs his chin, thinking intensely. A small amount of green energy is leaking out of his ring.
Hal: What can I come up with to fight a giant rock?
Hal flies up to the rock monster's face, projecting a pneumatic drill in front of him.
Hal: I know! A drill! They hit rocks!
Pneumatic Drill projection bounces off the rock monster as it continues to just stand there, unfazed.
Hal: Aw, nuts!
Hal is back to rubbing his chin, albeit curled up in a sort of foetal pose and sweating a lot.
Hal: Now what? A boxing glove? No, you can't box rocks... Water? No, I can't make that! STUPID! STUPID! ST--
The rock monster crushes Hal into the ground, killing him bloodily.
DISCLAIMER: I would like to point out that I have never read a Green Lantern comic, and probably never will. My research for this article comes from CSN and Wikipeadia. However, the whole Parallax retcon did seem interesting to me - so here's a my take on it.
Hal’s caption box should have a different font to that of Parallax’s.
The following takes place just after the destruction of Coast city by Mogul. For months Hal has had a nagging voice in his head, and it has convinced him that he needs to return home. NOW!
1. Hal Jordan is flying through space, Earth visible in the distance. He is desperate to return to Earth.
HAL (Green Caption Box)
In brightest day, in blackest night,
PARALLAX (Yellow Caption Box)
Your city standing, shining bright,
2. A close up of Hal’s face. From the background we can tell he has entered Earth’s atmosphere. A tear has welled up in the corner of one of his eye’s. Hal knows that something is not right.
HAL (Green Caption Box)
No evil shall escape my sight.
PARALLAX (Yellow Caption Box)
Hurry now, get to the site.
3. A large landscaping panel showing Coast City in rubble. It is completely destroyed. We see the full body of Hal from behind, as he looks at his destroyed home.
HAL (Green Caption Box)
Let those who worship evil's might,
PARALLAX (Yellow Caption Box)
Why do you continue to fight?
4. A full body shot of Hal, floating in air. His fist is clenched, ring powering up. Hal is devastated and angry.
HAL (Green Caption Box)
Beware my power...
PARALLAX (Yellow Caption Box)
Behold my power...
5. A lose up of Hal’s face. It is clenched in rage. His eyes have a yellow tinge to them.
HAL (Yellow Caption Box, with a fading green colour to it)
Sunday, June 19, 2011
Panel 1: HAL JORDAN and CAROL FERRIS are sitting on top of a high plateau out in the middle of the desert in the western United States. While each has their power ring, both are dressed in civilian attire.
HAL JORDAN: So why not start right now?
Panel 2: HAL stands up and forms a car with his ring. It floats mid-air next to the plateau. It’s a convertible, a real classic model of some kind.
HAL: You said yourself you feel like our relationship needs a jump-start. A reboot. So why not start now?
Panel 3: HAL opens up the passenger door of the car for CAROL.
HAL: For the first time in what feels like forever, we have some genuine free time. There’s no crisis threatening to destroy reality, Earth is relatively safe, and we’re free have some time to ourselves.
Panel 4: CAROL stands up as she considers HAL’s offer.
HAL: So what do you say, Carol? Would you like to go for a drive?
Panel 5: HAL forms a pair of sunglasses which he puts on his face.
HAL: We’ve got the whole universe as our highway.
Besides the fact that there’s this movie coming out that happens to be called Green Lantern?
Could it be that each one is responsible for keeping watch over a vast region of the entire universe, opening up wide array of possible stories to be told amongst the backdrop of outer space itself?
Perhaps it’s that each Green Lantern is specifically chosen to join the corps, rather than getting their powers from having super-genetics or randomly being at the right scientific accident at the right time, leaving readers more free to imagine what might happen if they were possibly chosen to be part of this intergalactic police unit?
Might it be the vast array of aliens who are on the same team as the human Green Lanterns, from the tiny Bzzd, to the non-socializing Mogo, to the four-armed administrative Salaak, to the countless others from over the years?
Maybe it’s that each ring is limited only by its users willpower and imagination, allowing a wide variety of applications and creative energy constructs?
Though, perhaps this last one is part of the reason that so many of the tenured Though Balloons writers listed Green Lantern as the character they most fear having to write. Which is ironic, considering that one of the standout features of any Corps member is either the ability to be fearless or otherwise overcome great fear.
So here it is, ya poozers - a chance for you who fear having to write such a character to step up to the plate and overcome your fear. Because once you do that, any other character you might have to write should be easy. Or, if you happen to be a play-at-home writer, here’s what could be an easy opportunity for you to try to upstage the Thought Balloons regulars.
As much as I'd like to say otherwise, this week is Hal Jordan specifically, to go with the movie. It makes the task more difficult, but also means the rewards for pulling off a good script should be all that much greater.
Now lets put on those rings and write some pages!
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Panel 1: Dark Panel, from the inside of the trunk of a car. Little, if anything, can be seen.
SFX: bang bang bang
RED CROW: Let me OUT!
Panel 2: A blinding light as the trunk is open, though the outline of BAD HORSE blocks out a section of the light.
RED CROW: Ah!
Panel 3: Exterior shot as BAD HORSE pulls RED CROW out of the trunk of the car. For the most part, RED CROW looks physically fine outside of what might be expected for having been stuck in a car trunk for several hours, and he’s understandably ticked off.
BAD HORSE: Out.
RED CROW: Do you have any idea what you’ve done?!
BAD HORSE: Yeah. I’ve brought you along for a little road trip far outside the safety of your normal jurisdiction.
Panel 4: RED CROW kneels on the ground as he tries to recover. He’s not doing such a good job of it at the moment, which is to be expected. BAD HORSE stands tall, allowing him to tower over RED CROW.
RED HORSE: Where…where are we?
Panel 5: Wide panel. A “Welcome to Kansas” greeting sign is in the foreground and off to the side of the panel, showing that BAD HORSE and RED CROW are just on the other side of the state boarder. The two of them can be seen in the background on the other side of the panel.
BAD HORSE: I’m sure you’ll figure it out soon enough on your own.
Friday, June 17, 2011
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
FBI agent Baylis Earl Nitz sits at a bar, a cigarette in his mouth, a whiskey in his hand. The bar around him has been wrecked – broken chairs, over-turned tables, smashed glasses and bottles, blood on the floor. There’s obviously been a huge brawl here, and now almost everyone else has cleared out. In the background we can see a doorway leading through to the pool room and we can just make out that a man has been tied, spread-eagled, to the pool table though we can only make out his feet from this angle. Dashiell Bad Horse stands over this man, holding a broken pool cue – about to go to work.
Close on Nitz. He takes a drink from his whiskey. His cigarette sits on the corner of an ash tray on the bar. Behind him (off-panel), the man on the pool table starts screaming.
Man (O/P): No – no, please… please… I’ll tell you anything… please…
Still close on Nitz, listening. He sets the glass down on the bar. A slight smile flickers across his lips.
Man (O/P): Pleeeeaaaaaarrrghhhhhhhhhh!
Same again. The cigarette is in Nitz’s mouth again. He’s rubbing his eye with a hand, looking a little bored now.
Man (O/P): No – no – no – noooaaaauuuurrrrggghh!
Same again. Nitz is picking his teeth with a toothpick now. His cigarette is ground out on the bar.
Behind him, Dash Bad Horse walks back into the main bar, wiping bloody hands on his jeans.
Dash doesn’t reply. Nitz turns to face him.
Nitz: Did you get the information I need?
Looking pissed off, Dash turns and walks back into the pool room.
Dash: Fuck. I knew there was something...