Sunday, July 19, 2015

Why Ant-Man?

Because we do tie-in weeks when a new comic book movie hits theatres.

There's been a lot of change around here, but that's one tradition that isn't going away anytime soon.

But why Ant-Man?  More specifically, why Scott Lang?

Well, he's the protagonist of the film for one thing.  And we've already done Eric O'Grady...

But seriously, Scott Lang may be a legacy character, but he's managed to build a pretty varied career out of the whole thing.  Thief.  Reformed thief.  Electronics expert.  Relapsed thief.  Super hero.  Avenger.  Fantastic Four-er.  Dead.  Reformed dead.  Fantastic Four-er a second time.  Defender.  Most recently, small business owner.

But perhaps most importantly, Father.

There are a lot of things that can make a character worth caring about, but for Scott Lang, I think it's his relationships.  And while the links he has to the superhero and supervillain community are often worth your while (I'm partial to him and Taskmaster - particularly in the most recent book by Nick Spencer and Ramon Rosanas), it's his relationship with his daughter Cassie that makes Scott something special.  He's had a lot of ups and downs and encountered more than his fair share of challenges, but the thing he wants more than anything is to be a good father to his daughter, and I think that's worth dwelling on.

There's an awful lot to chew on when it comes to Scott Lang.  So let's do some chewing, shall we?


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    Page wide panel. We open inside of an A.I.M base. It’s sleek, super high-tech, but alarm lights are flashing as the whole place goes to hell. Ant-Man (the cause of all this trouble) runs down the corridor towards us, the reader. A.I.M scientists rush around in blind panic in the background.

    It’s safe to say they know I’m here. I used to be so much better at breaking into places...

    Cut to. Inside the Oval Office in the White House.

    The president (Barack Obama? Is he the prez in the Marvel U?) stands behind his desk, suit jacket off and hung over the back of his chair. This is serious. The room is full of S.H.I.E.L.D agents, decked out in combat gear. The president is talking to his own head of security - something like one of the bald dudes on this pic. We shall call him TERRY.

    ...It’s just breaking out I need to figure out.

    I simply refuse to go into the bunker. I will not be bullied by these maniacs.

    Mr. President, sir, both the head of S.H.I.E.L.D and I feel we need to take the threat that A.I.M pose as a legitimate danger.

    Our reports indicate they plan to make a move on the White House...

    PRESIDENT: (Cutting Terry off)
    What's with all the acronyms? Wasn’t there a S.W.O.R.D at one point too?
    You’re not taking this seriously are you? We need to get you and your family down into the bunker.

    Cut back to inside the A.I.M base. We are in a different section that Ant-Man has just entered - he stands next to a wall placing a small explosive device on it. Two A.I.M scientists stand at the far end of the corridor, in the background. One is a more senior member and dressed accordingly.

    Explosives in a corridor. What could go wrong?

    The base teleporter is primed.

    On whose authority? The teleporter costs a billion a trip. MODOK is going to kill us.



    Cut back to inside the oval office. A tiny explosion erupts in the top corner of the desk. A tiny tiny tiny (ant-sized) figure leaps out through the flames.

    SFX: (Small) around explosion.

    Soooo happy that was an exterior wall.

    A full size Ant-Man lies on his back in the Oval Office. All the weapons in the room are trained on him. The president is leaning over his desk inspecting the tiny hole in his desk, smoke still billowing from it.

    Intruder! Freeze! Put your hands up!

    Well which is it?

    Repeat of 1.5 - However now the desk has vanished. Everyone - except Ant-Man is looking at this in surprise. Ant-Man, who has now propped himself up on his elbows, still on the floor. Is not surprised at this vanishing act at all.



    Um, your desk was a miniaturised A.I.M base. They may have stolen the shrink tech from me.

    ANT-MAN: (Small)
    My bad.

    1. The idea of a miniturised AIM base alone is enough to win me over to this page - such a good concept. I really dig your scenes within the base and the reveal in panels 5 and 6 (excellent use of a repeat panel), but I think your panels in the President's office could be crisper. You know me and my penchant for thin and lean, but I'd say you could get rid of a lot of the back and forth between Barry and Terry to speed up and streamline those moments, allowing the focus to stay on your big money idea.

  4. I haven't seen the movie so this has nothing to do with it, but I've always wondered what it's like to be controlled by Ant Man.

    An Ant Walks into a Bar
    by David Press.

    : Opening on nothing but blackness. Narrative captions hang in space.

    CAP: “So I’m taking my morning siesta after the first eight hours of lifting carcass—

    1.2: The lights turn on. If there’s a way to make the panel be somewhat blurry, but with particles of red and green and blue in it that would be cool. If not, let’s come up with something else. The idea is the ant is waking up from a nap.

    CAP: “When suddenly I’m up on my legs and moving--

    1.3: The focus realigns to show tall grass and dirt.

    CAP: “--and I’m hearing this voice. It says:
    CAP [2]: ‘Fight. Kill.

    1.4: The camera turns to the left, and we see the heel and foot of a RED AND BLACK boot in the far corner of this panel and an ANT LEG beneath it. Alongside this perspective is row upon row of ANTS marching alongside.

    CAP: “We’re going somewhere. Then I realize—

    1.5: Now the ant is looking behind him to see ANT-MAN riding on his back. His left hand is raised, and his helmet’s antennae vibrate with RED circular waves that are controlling the ants.

    CAP: “--It’s that jerk again.

    1.6: We’ve cut away. TWO FIRE ANTS are saddled up to a mud-made bar. In their little ant-hands—I’m not sure how this is possible, but whatever, go with it—are two paper cups in front of them.
    ANT 1 has been the one narrating. ANT 2 is to the right side of the panel.

    ANT 1: Controlling us!
    ANT 2: What a human. Doesn’t he know we always lose in his childish fights?
    ANT 1: The guy sucks.

    --END OF PAGE--

    1. Ha! Great concept and really well sold with the slow build / reveal. That line in panel 5 nails it and the final coda of panel 6 is too much fun to resist. Really fun stuff, David!


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