Saturday, July 26, 2014

Komodo - Where You've Been - R.A. Wonsowski


Panel 1- KOMODO is in a Paraguayan hospital room. she is wearing scrubs and has a stethoscope slung about her neck. She is smiling gently and waving to a young girl patient with a cleft palate in an old iron bed, wearing an Operation Smile t-shirt. (Note: Komodo should look like she found an intermediary form, not so lizard-y, just enough to let her keep her legs.) The equipment should look like 70s/80s surplus medical equipment. Foreground, CAPTAIN AMERICA waits on Komodo, leaning against an empty iron bedframe. His cowl is down and his shield is on his back.

CAP: I wish you would reconsider. I've seen the tapes, you were an impressive asset to the Initiative.
CAP: And with Drs. Pym and McCoy on personal leave, we could use another Avenger with medic experience.

Panel 2- CAP and KOMODO walk down the hospital hallway. The linoleum tile on the floor is peeling and the walls are unfinished concrete. Children between 2 and 8 with cleft palates are sitting with their parents along the sides. Two teenage volunteers in yellow tees and shorts pass out small stuffed animals to the children. KOMODO's smile has gone.

KOMODO: To be an Avenger is an honor and a calling of the highest order...
KOMODO: But again, Captain, I must say no.

Panel 3- KOMODO and CAP stop at a water cooler. KOMODO holds two small paper cones in one hand while working the spigot with the other.

KOMODO: Take Pym and Beast. Let us throw in Reed Richards and Dr. Strange for good measure.
KOMODO: You beat back Galactus and Kang and Immortus and Dormammu. Congratulations.

Panel 4- KOMODO passes a water cone to CAP as she gestures with hers.

KOMODO: You cured the Legacy virus and isolated vampire anticoagulants. Amazing scientific breakthroughs.
KOMODO: And for all your genius, you could not stop a mundane cancer from killing the Kree Captain Marvel.

Panel 5- CAP and KOMODO, their backs to us now, are walking out two glass double doors. The sweltering sun outside silhouettes the pair as they exit the hospital. CAP has turned from KOMODO in shame, and passes his water to an old woman sitting cross-legged on the floor.

KOMODO: If you really want to make the world a better place, find a cure for AIDS. Design crop mutations that grow in desert climes.
KOMODO: Strap the Palestinian and Israeli premiers to their chairs and don't feed them until they bang out a treaty.

Panel 6- CAP and KOMODO are surrounded by children playing soccer in a dirt lot outside the hospital. KOMODO'S arms are spread wide as if to embrace the world.  CAP looks perplexed more by the children running around him than by her argument.  A little GIRL in a dirty yellow dress tugs on the leg of KOMODO's scrubs.

KOMODO: Beating the crap out of another man-child in spandex solves nothing.
KOMODO: This...

Panel 7- KOMODO bends at the waist to face the GIRL, sternly wondering why the interruption.


Panel 8- The GIRL throws her arms around KOMODO's neck in an enthusiastic expression of thanks. KOMODO's eyes are wide with surprise.

SoundFX:  *hug!*

Panel 9- The GIRL runs off to join the game. KOMODO gestures to her as both she and CAP smile at each other, KOMODO from the unexpected affection, CAP for finally understanding.

KOMODO: That is how you change the world.


  1. I get what you're going for, but I think that it falls flat because it suffers from the all-too commonly ignored problem of how if the real world had problems like Galactus and the Legacy Virus and world-conquering super villains, then the work that superheroes do WOULD be just as big a deal as solving cancer or world peace.

  2. It's a good talky page in set-up, but, as MK alludes to, comes off a little preachy. I feel nothing is added to the age-old argument of "why don't superheroes solve real world problems?"

  3. I do like what you are going for here, and feel others have put forward their feelings on it. I'll look at it strictly from a script perspective.
    Firstly, waaaay too much panels and speech for a single page Ray. If I were to live past the artists assault on me for handing him a page this busy, the letterer would surely do me in. I think you can say what you want here in a lot less panels.
    Also, nobody would take that tone with Captain America.

  4. I'll partly echo the above comments. I like the direction you take here and generally dig the trope of superheroes losing track of the world's long-term problems, but there's too much going on for a single page to take (something that I've definitely been guilty of in the past).

    I also don't know if I'd agree with Komodo's tone versus the final beat of them sharing a moment of warm understanding. I think she either needs to take a less personally attacking tone or the last beat needs to change. As is, the two don't quite go together in my opinion.


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