Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Plutonian - A Glass Darkly - J.D. Coughlan

SET-UP: Qubit recounts to his teammates a time when Tony encountered an evil doppelganger of himself, the Anti-Plutonian (essentially, Irredeemable's version of Bizarro). The Anti-Plutonian went on a berserk rampage before Qubit and Tony contained him.

Panel 1: The Plutonian and Qubit at a desk in a lab, intently discussing something. Papers and sophisticated equipment lie on the desk. Tony seems concerned. Note that this is a flashback, so he is wearing his old white costume and still has the floppy fringe.

In the background, the Anti-Plutonian stands in a glass tube. He is like a deformed version of Tony, in a crude version of his costume. He is angry, like a caged animal.

QUBIT (CAP): Tony and I spent hours coming up with a way of sending the Anti-Plutonian back to his home in the Anti-Dimension...

QUBIT (CAP): And while that is what we told everyone that we had succeeded in doing...

Panel 2: Reverse POV, over Anti-Plutonian's shoulder looking through the glass. Tony and Qubit now look at him gravely.

QUBIT (CAP): We found the humane solution to be impossible.

Panel 3: Qubit solemnly operates a control panel in front of the tube. Tony stands between Qubit and the tube, looking at the Anti-Plutonian. We cannot see his face, but the Anti-Plutonian looks down at him with rage, banging on the glass.

QUBIT (CAP): We both knew there was only one option for such mindless power. He would never really be caged for long.

QUBIT (CAP): I harmonised his anti-atoms, causing him to... to vaporise. I told myself he was never real to begin with, but...

Panel 4: Close on the back of Tony's head. There should be an outline of a reflection on the glass, but nothing detailed. The Anti-Plutonian still rages.

QUBIT (CAP): At the time, I assumed Tony was as heartbroken as I was over what we were doing...

QUBIT (CAP): But I know now that as he stared into the eyes of that monstrous beast...

Panel 5: Same as Panel 4, but now the Anti-Plutonian has been vaporised, leaving a wisp, and we can see Tony's reflection clearly. His face is screwed up in controlled anger, but a little bit of fear in his eyes too.

QUBIT (CAP): ...he saw himself.



  1. The whole playing on the bizzaro Superman angle was a cool concept, and your use of it as a mirror to show the man the Plutonian would became played really well on the page with that nice visual motif at the end.

  2. Really cool concept that you executed brilliantly here, J.D. A really nice way to pick up on one aspect of the Superman mythos that didn't appear in the series in a way that feels natural and fitting. Well done.

  3. Panel 5 makes this page. Great visual.

    I'd argue that you maybe could have tinkered with the captions a little to make that final panel silent and have it really hit home. But this page still works either way. Good stuff!


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