Page 254 lives, and breathes, and walks! Gaze upon it here.

1. This page is another example of Sam coming up with a layout I never would have come up with on my own. When I was planning the layouts I generally tried not to give her more than six panels on a page, because more panels take more time to draw. But she went ahead and gave herself eight panels, because she’s dedicated. She could’ve done it into fewer panels, but she gets more good character moments this way.

2. Long ago, when I was first planning this story, I worried about how to fit in the beginning of Brianna and Jaxula’s relationship. Jaxula had his own backstory, and his own role in the conflict with the Ultimage, and I wanted to show how they met, and how they got to know each other, and eventually I realized, again, that the story is about Brianna. We only needed two panels, a couple of pages ago, to establish that E.D.I.C.T. has tried to stop the Ultimage, and that he threw them into the dungeon. Given that, we just need Shelly to take Brianna down into the dungeon to introduce her to Jax.

3. There’s only one caption on this page, which is, “That sounded pretty boring, but I wanted Shelly to be happy, so I humored her.” The first reminds us that Brianna is basically a hedonist, looking for excitement and thrills, who doesn’t want to do boring stuff. If you look back across the Electric Team stories so far, this character trait should be fairly consistent. It’s mainly manifested as her wanting to fight people. Now that we’ve gotten to know her better, we can see that when she’s excited about fighting bad guys, it’s maybe not so much because she’s dedicated to lofty ideals of making the world a better place, but because it’s exciting.

The second part of this line of dialogue, though, reminds us that Brianna’s not a sociopath or anything. She values her friend Shelly, and wants her to be happy.

4. From the beginning of The Electric Team, Abi, Sam, and I knew that Brianna used to be a villain and became a hero. This storyline is us exploring how someone makes that transition. To be fair to Brianna, many people make mistakes and do questionable things when they’re teenagers; most people just don’t have the opportunity to rule over a castle.

5. I imagined the dungeon as just being dirty and made of rocks, but Sam gave it a neat sci-fi look.

6. As I’m writing this, Mad Max: Fury Road is playing in the background. I don’t watch many movies, and I almost never rewatch movies, but I’d happily watch Fury Road over and over. on a regular basis. It’s my favorite movie of the last five years or so, and one of my top ten movies of all time. Sam is also a big fan; Abi hasn’t seen it yet, but will when she’s older. The only time it’s specifically come up in the production of the comic was when I asked Sam to give the dudes in the bar back in Chapter Four a Mad Max kind of look.

Presumably there are more Mad Max-like parts of the Electric Team’s world; hopefully we’ll get to see some in the near future.

7. I can’t remember if I mentioned this recently, but Josh Burnett came up with the name E.D.I.C.T. I knew what the organization was, and I wanted a cool acronym name, so I went to him, because he’s great at acronyms, and he came back to me with two possibilities. E.D.I.C.T. fit better, and I love it, and I’m glad we’ve got it.

8. We’re only seeing this from Brianna’s standpoint, but you may wonder, what does that look like on the worlds where time is breaking down? I’m glad you asked, because we’ve covered that—in the Time Trouble story, illustrated by Joshua Burnett. We saw how, in 1950’s New York, there were a number of strange time anomalies, which resulted in Yarko the Great recruiting Bart Hill to come help fight the Ultimage.

It makes me happy that, in the world of 1950s comics, the breakdown of time and space manifests as bacon turning back into pigs, clocks running backwards, and pilgrims showing up and being confused by skyscrapers. That seems like a very period-appropriate take.

9. The dream is that you read that story about the Ultimage months ago, and vaguely wondered  who he was, and then started reading this story about Jason Occult, and when you found out Jason was the Ultimage, it was a blinding revelation that filled you with a sense of deep satisfaction. That’s the dream, anyway.

10. We’ve known from the beginning that Brianna ends up with Jaxula, and we know that the Ultimage gets defeated, so we know where this story is going, but we don’t really, but we . . . kinda do? Getting there is more than half the fun!