We’re back with the next block of pages and our next character cover – Agnosto Mercury.
Aggy only appears a couple of times in the story, but each of them are pretty important. In preparation for this chapter, I actually wrote a complete history for both Edge Inc. and Agnosto himself. I kind of always intended to go back and do a short story with Aggy, but it just didn’t happen.
Anyway, here’s the cover and the full chapter!
When I was putting together Chapter Zero, I knew that the next chapter after that was going to start this way – with Hannah sitting at her desk again, starting at her computer screen. So the idea was that the opening spread would definitely resemble the last chapter. As far as the character building here goes… I knew that Hannah wouldn’t just sit at home twiddling her thumbs. I’m sure someone out there might question her going back to work while Jeremy is missing, but I know for a lot of people, when something bad happens, they need to get back into their routine to feel normal, or bury themselves in work just as a distraction. And that’s kind of what Hannah needed to do.
The other thing to point out is that this chapter is really Hannah’s “call to action” in terms of a heroic journey. She’s down right now and she’s looking for something. So Agnosto gives her something to do and from here, the story starts rolling.
This chapter was one of those where I needed to cover a lot of ground to really get the story going and set up the characters (especially Hannah and Lucas and the way they interact). But then I started adding in all sorts of extra little bits. I was working on THE INTERVIEW short story that featured Edward Hopper and I kind of fell in love with writing him (which is why he ends us being in so many OTV stories). Anyway, I threw him in here just for shits and giggles, but that meant adding some pages. Then I added in Cheryl (and Hannah on the way to the meeting) which added in a couple of more. So this chapter grew in the telling.*
And finally, this Daily Recorder story that ends the chapter was really fun to write. It was a way to really give a quick backstory to Hannah (which was great), but at the same time, I wanted to write about her in a completely contrasting was to how she’s so far been presented in the story. For me, one of the big themes throughout this story is the media and how it presents information – usually with a bias of some sort.** In this case we’re not really sure what that bias is, but there definitely is an angle that’s different from the Hannah that’s presented in the comic. At the same time, there are facts in that story that are true. So does that make the whole story true…? This is where you’ve really got to be a smart, objective reader!
Anyway, lots and lots of stuff happens here in this chapter! I hope you guys enjoy.
*One of the great things about working on a webcomic is that you don’t have to worry so much about keeping a story to a certain length. You can just tell your tale however you want. This can sometimes be an issue – and at times I think I let this story ramble a bit – but for the most part, I love that I got to include stuff that I probably would have cut if I was aiming for a typical 22-24 page comic book.
**The point here is that ALL media has a bias and if you don’t see that, then that’s where we run into issues. This idea that media can be fair to both sides and completely balanced is crazy. If you happen to agree with everything that you see and read on a given day, you probably need to expand the news that you’re consuming.