Wednesday, April 20, 2022

A New Challenger Appears (or Much Ado About Nothing)

Every good story has an antagonist. Whether it's a specific individual or group of characters, or something more esoteric, like the environment or a situation, the hero always has some sort of foil that acts against them. Holmes had Professor Moriarty, Superman had Lex Luthor, Frodo faced the elements of Middle Earth in his quest to destroy the One Ring

In my own personal story, I have certainly had antagonists.  As I think back on events during any particular school day, while many of my classmates would join in on the bullying, two or three specific kids would usually initiate the behavior. It helps to put into perspective how people acted around me. Some people, while I wouldn't classify them as "friends" necessarily, would at least leave me allow, unless one of the antagonizers was around. Whether you call it mob mentality or wolf pack mentality, it made me wonder what I did to attract their ire. Truth is, probably nothing. Nothing beyond being different.

Back on fictional antagonists, comic strip characters have their own, from Susie Derkins for Calvin, to the kite-eating tree for Charlie Brown, to Mondays for Garfield. I felt it was time to give Furble a proper villain. Thus, our mysterious alien admiral was born.

Strip 43/166 - Definitely not a Muppet

These new aliens bear more than a passing resemblance to the Martian Muppets from Sesame Street. But, they were actually modeled off of some little alien finger puppets that my mom had crocheted. I wanted something that was completely different from the aliens that we were already familiar with in the strip, and these little guys fit the bill. The ship was loosely based on the profile of the Star Destroyers from Star Wars, with a bit of Star Trek terminology thrown in for good measure.

On a side note, beginning with the last two strips from last week and continuing, I decided to start signing each strip with my full first name "Marcus" as opposed to "Marc" (even though the by-line in the paper continued to say "Marc" for the run of the strip). Not sure why I made the change.

Strip 44/166 - Well, that's not creepy at all

We've got an alien creeping around Furbulia, scaring poor defenseless Furbulians, making them faint. Truly evil. Of course, the real oddity of this strip is the fact that (presumably) fictional media on Furbulia includes depictions of Martians. I suppose that it is not beyond the realm of possibility that Martian explorers could have made it to Furbulia as well as Earth. In reality, "Martian" becomes a term interchangeable with "alien". Since we're already dealing with aliens (compared to humans), Martians become inception-level aliens. Don't think about it too hard, it hurts.

Strip 45/166 - And just like that...

It's worth noting that the last strip here was actually the first strip of the next month of comics. I'm pretty sure, like other stories, I had more in mind for the alien admiral (maybe even a name). But, somewhere between finishing the previous month's submissions and starting the next month's, that changed, and I decided to bring the conflict to an abrupt (and absurd) end. Probably no more absurd than a high school student having his comic published in the local newspaper. Embrace the absurd.

And, don't worry: like all good antagonists, he'll be back...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.