Hello, world! Page 259 is out, so why not read a few notes about it? 

1. I like the background in panel 2. Looks like they’re in a fancy castle, which they are.  

2. The last time we saw Brianna and Jaxula talking, he was locked in a dungeon, and she was arguing with him. Obviously they formed a connection during those conversations; he’s showing up here to warn her, and she’s not even pretending to want to throw him back in a cell.

3. Jaxula almost wasn’t on this page; my original plan was for Jason to walk in on the first panel of this page, and then they’d talk about the tear in space/time . . . and then we’d have to work Jax in after that. It was only last week, a day or so before I sent Sam the script for this page, that I realized it would work better if Jax walked in first, he could do the exposition about the rip in space/time, have a moment, and THEN Jason could walk it. Makes the whole ending flow better, trust me. The only problem was, I worried we wouldn’t have enough space to show Brianna hide Jax.

4. Jax is a heroic guy, so he wouldn’t just submit to “hiding in the closet” on his own–he was all ready to go up against the Ultimage, even though it meant certain death. Good thing Brianna wasn’t going to put up with that nonsense.

5. But how to fit in the sequence of Brianna zapping Jaxula and then hiding him in a closet? I realized we could “tell don’t show” her putting him in the closet via a caption, and hoped Sam would be able to squeeze in the zapping. I thought we would still see Brianna zap Jax, so I was pleasantly surprised when I saw Sam’s layout; it was her idea to show only the sound effect, “ZAP!”, in its own panel.

6. When Sam did the layout, she put Jax and Brianna in the center of the page, facing each other. I liked it, and asked her to see if she could find a way to make those images really pop, like, with the background color or similar. She made the space/time rip visible at the tops of the panels, in a way that almost looks like there’s blood leaking down on them, which is cool.

7. I’m happy I was able to work in a Super Team reference here–the Super Team is still doing stuff! They liberated the prisoners from the dungeon! Again, I want it to feel like there’s a whole elaborate, multi-stage conflict going on, that’s mostly taking place off-panel.

8. I’m pretty sure it was Miss Mousie who led the raid on the dungeon, while Bee Man was leading the attack on Jason Occult, keeping him distracted.

9. There’s the Ultimage in the last panel . . . man, he fought all those heroes for hours, and he’s barely tired! It’s a delicate balance, making your villain ultra-powerful, but not so powerful that he could just automatically kill all the heroes. Fortunately, I’ve read a lot of comic books, and given this sort of thing a lot of thought, so I think we pulled it off.

10. Man, we’re close to the end now. You can feel it, right?  I just sent Sam the polished version of the script for page 260 today, and I’m nervous about it. . . these next two pages are the climax, the payoff, everything we’ve been building to for the last six months. I hope it works. Tune in next time to find out!