HA Stories

[Story idea] HA : Downtime
irrevenant at 2:28PM, Feb. 25, 2014
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HA have just saved the world from impending destruction. Again.  And now things are quiet.

This issue will explore what the HA team get up to when they're *not* saving the world. 

Bombshell spends all her spare time scheming, of course. :P  But what about the others?  Do they hang around the base? Go home to spend time with friends and family? Go on patrol rather than just sit? 

It's an opportunity to to learn a little bit more about our heroes and explore their interactions during quieter moments. 

I imagine this issue will consist of two main elements: (a) Interactions between the heroes who are just hanging around the base, and (b) interspliced vignettes about what the other heroes are up to on their ‘day off’. It might even be fun to include a quick one about an HA master villain taking time to do their shopping or something. xD

Elements A and B could be written and drawn separately, then combined into a single issue. The different B story segments could actually each be written by each character's creator. 

I see four basic ways we can go about combining the different stories:
1. More-or-less completely separate - like Heroes Alliance #1 and the origin stories that preceded it.
2. Element A is the ‘main’ story that cuts away every so often to tell a B story.
3.  Like #2 but the B stories are cut up and spread throughout the main plot. 
4.  The different stories are fully integrated to form a single coherent work. eg. Azumorph and Comet Kid are hanging about the base, speculating that on his day off, Peligroso practices his glowering at which point it cuts to a page of Peligroso enjoying the ballet. :D  Peligroso wonders if everything's okay at base and it cuts back to… 

Personally I vote for #3. #4 would be awesome but very, very hard to coordinate.  The only downside to #3 is that authors would have to write their stories so they still make sense when read broken up. 

I personally envision the  story ending with an earth-shattering crisis arising, a shrug and an “Oh well, back to it…”  xD

I realise this is hecka vague.  Partly that's because this isn't actually a story per se - it's a framework to hang stories off. And partly it's because I see it as an opportunity for individual character creators to tell stories that reveal a bit more about their characters and I don't want to tread on their toes too much (though the Peligroso ballet thing is a MUST! :P). 
ironhand at 11:22PM, Feb. 25, 2014
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Great stuff, I like this a lot. Part of me could imagine Azumorph going to visit the graves of those who died when he was Chango Presto, before going out with Comet Kid for a little while. Amalgam would most likely still be searching for CLAW. Perhaps Shell goes home and watches films with Brad Stone in them! This would be a really nice issue, with perhaps one running plot (maybe one character is heading somewhere throughout the entire issue, and at the end they reach their destination or whatever…) so the issue doesn't seem like a filler. I like this alot, though.
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Nepath at 1:30AM, Feb. 26, 2014
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Great idea. A much more challenging issue that it sounds but if it can be pulled off then would be really cool. I think it is only worth replying to this thread with solid ideas that you can try to follow through. (The HA threads all tend to start with a defined point and then turn into endless chatter). They lose focus.
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So…I will try to do something for this project, if I get it done it will be about Titan and the fact that she has no one here in this time. I might make it about her seeking out Gaea who would have been her mother, or i might have her meet Lucy Energize. 
Energize: Hunted Part 3 now updating…

irrevenant at 8:56PM, Dec. 20, 2014
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SUX is suggesting that the young heroes (Vora, Harmony, Blue Jay and Comet Kid) sneak about the complex seeing how everyones favorite demonic biker relaxes on a seemingly normal day off ( http://www.theduckwebcomics.com/forum/topic/176745/?page=1#latest ).  That could be a very cool subplot - or even framing device.
last edited on Dec. 20, 2014 9:58PM
irrevenant at 5:53PM, Jan. 20, 2015
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Okay, this will obviously have to be a very collaborative script. To get things started, I'm thinking SUX will script out his thread featuring Peligroso, Comet Kid, Blue Jay, Harmony and Vora.  (Hopefully those characters are okay to use. If the creators have a separate arc in mind for any of them, hopefully we can do both, depending.) and we can use that as the “backbone” of the issue with individual character vignettes interspersed.


If creators can throw in ideas as to what their characters would get up to, that would be great. Scripts for vignettes (say 1-4 pages) would be brilliant but I'm happy to write something up and run it by the creators. If nothing else, it'll give them something to tear apart and riff off.


Here are some ideas for the individual plot threads. (And they're *just* ideas - feel free to go “No, no, NO!” and suggest something else. :) ).


Peligroso and the young ‘uns: As described by SUX. Comet Kid, Blue Jay, Harmony and Vora tail Peligroso on his day off. Personally I envision this as mostly Comet Kid and Blue Jay’s idea with Harmony as the impressionable newbie being dragged along, and Vora thinking it's a terrible idea but tagging along with the others to keep an eye on them.


If we can get that short from Nepath featuring Titan and Lucy that would be brilliant. They'd have a lot to talk about, and there's a huge question mark over Lucy since her Energize series was rolled back. Titan and Gaea would work well too, but I'm not sure if the New Guard has Gaea too tied up for a casual visit.


I can see Chaos hanging out with HUB, talking shop and helping upgrade her chair with the latest technology. (I know HUB is technopathic but I'm a little vague on exactly what her powers are and whether upgrading her chair would actually be necessary/viable).


Azumorph might pop to Australia to visit the Oz Stars and visit the graves like Ironhand suggested. (I'm still kind of vague on why was affected so strongly by that. Does he feel responsible? If so, why? Were he and the dead kids close? Possibly too tricky to go into here, but it'd be good to cover his backstory in more depth at some stage). Maybe he actually gives talks at high schools now about don't give up because you never know what could happen tomorrow - just look at him.


I'm *really* interested to know what Bombshell does during her quiet times. Industrial espionage like in her own title? General plotting? Reading? (We know she likes Nietzsche).


Would SHELL spend a quiet day in Japan with his android family? Is that starting to feel a bit hollow now that he has good friends in HA?  Masao is a bit of a cipher and it would be interesting to see him in his private moments.


Amalgam probably is out there trying to track down leads on CLAW like Ironhand said, but I wonder if he'd try to learn more about the heroes he's composed of. Does he feel responsible for their families, etc.? How would they feel about him?


Does Relik still have his film career? It would be kind of funny if he was all “Phew, finally a break from saving the world!” then cut to Brad Stone in action as Michael Callahan fighting giant robots against a Green screen in "The Energize Story'. xD


The Spatulator is probably hanging around wondering why he hasn't heard from HA in a while. He could've helped with that whole zombie thing, demmit!  Ditto Wireless. 


I can see Kaine and Roof Rat talking as they spar in the gym - probably with lethal weaponry. 


Mr Imp I can actually see doing the standup circuit in his spare time. He would be the *ultimate* prop comic. :D He'd be pretty good at impressions, too… 
last edited on Jan. 20, 2015 5:56PM
ironhand at 2:27AM, Jan. 21, 2015
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I actually don't think we should show what Bombshell does in her downtime. I think she should be the one in this issue who is still busy working as Bombshell or hanging around the HA base checking up on loose threads etc. It's a great way to show off her character and also maintains that mystery about her that we all find interesting.
Amalgam has the 8 heroes memories and beliefs in his mind, so he already knows a fair bit about them. I actually have a really nice idea for an Amalgam story where we can showcase that more. If I ever get the chance I'd like to tell it.
Seeing a single panel of The Spatulator sat by the phone waiting would be a great and funny moment for sure!
To make sure this issue isn't too filler-esque, I think there should be one ongoing story inbetween scenes. Maybe a character is uncovering something about a certain plot or going somewhere? The issue ends with said revelation, which then pushes the rest of the series on etc.
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sux at 6:45AM, Jan. 21, 2015
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I like that Iron, the question is what would that ongoing issue be?
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

Abt_Nihil at 10:40AM, Jan. 21, 2015
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I was thinking the same as ironhand, that there should be an ongoing story in this. Maybe the younger heroes are actually trying to figure something out, or perhaps Peligroso does (although that would somewhat contradict his “day off”). Apart from that, I like many of irrevenant's suggestions, and I'd actually also like to see Bombshell do something different, or let her guard down in some way. The Titan/Lucy thing should really happen, because while the other character bits are more about them revisiting their private lives, it could be a central revelation for the HUniverse (no matter what Nepath eventually turns it into).
sux at 6:26PM, Jan. 21, 2015
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I have an idea, Peligroso goes and he does have his day off but he meets someone from RISE, maybe try and get him to turncoat?
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

irrevenant at 1:22PM, Jan. 22, 2015
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A filler episode isn't automatically a bad thing.  Filler episodes are common in SF and fantasy series like Buffy and Doctor Who, where the season arc is designed to unfold slowly over the course of many episodes.  Filler episodes help break the season up and, as long as they're entertaining, they can become fan favourites.  The groundhog day episode of Supernatural and the SG-1 episode “200” (where the characters are just sitting around spitballing ideas for a movie based on their adventures) come to mind.  Filler episodes are a great way to give an audience some breathing room after particularly heavy episodes, too.

LoL, I feel like I'm in that Seinfeld episode where they're trying to pitch “the show about nothing” as an obvious metaphor for Seinfeld itself. Of course, the show's not actually about nothing - it's about focussing on,  and finding the interest in, those things we don't normally pay attention to. 

That's the point of this episode - so far, HA has paid very little attention to the lives of our heroes out of costume (not necessarily literally), and to show who they are as people when they're not busy saving the world. Done right, if they're genuinely interesting characters, that should be more than enough for an interesting, entertaining episode. And the reader will walk away with a much better idea of who these characters are, and more interest in their ongoing adventures.  We shouldn't need to shoehorn action or arc advancement into a character(s)-focussed story about time away from that.  

PS. The idea is that the story will still have an “A plot” - that's the one about Peligroso and the kids. I see it taking the entire issue to play out with the rest more like vignettes that the A plot may or may not pass through, depending. eg. Comet Kid et al are likely to bump into Chaos and HUB who are just hanging around the station, but the Titan/Lucy vignette would be separate - we'probably just thrown to by name-dropping Titan in conversation.  Actually, if we *do* go with Relik playing Michael Callahan we could use that to throw to Lucy instead. (BTW, if we use Lucy, we should be careful not to imply that she's available to join HA - unless she is?).

PPS. Re: Amalgam, if he has access to all the heroes' memories that's even better.  It means  the guy has *nine* (including the original host) potential sets of friends and family that he's missing, maybe wants to reach out to and maybe feels obligated to. That's a hell of a conflict. 
Abt_Nihil at 3:01PM, Jan. 22, 2015
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I do agree that there shouldn't be any additional action or arc advancement shoehorned on. I was really just thinking of some kind of thread. (Why are they actually following Peligroso? Did I miss this? And are the readers only going to see what the kids are seeing, or is there an “objective” narrator also? …except for the Lucy bit, which apparently requires an objective narrator.) I also think we have enough characters to focus on, and including RISE might take some attention away from them. (Unless there's a really good reason for including them.)
irrevenant at 11:19PM, Jan. 22, 2015
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SUX hasn't gone into detail why they're following Peligroso.  I figured it was just a case of teenagers getting up to hijinx.  For some teens it's “Let's go and tip cows over!” or “I dare you to knock on the door of the spooky house where the ‘witch’ lives”.  For Comet Kid and Blue Jay?  Well, Peligroso is a mysterious demonic biker who, as far as I can tell, has never been seen with his mask off.  I'm sure they've been swapping Peligroso theories and stories for some time.  The idea of the demonic berserker taking a quiet day off? o_O  “Does that mask come off?  Does he even *have* a civilian identity?  Dare you to find out!  Come on!”.  Comet Kid once thought it was hilarious putting itching powder in Bombshell's costume so it seems in character…

If I were writing this part of the story, I'd probably make half of it the kids bantering, making up increasingly ludicrous theories (“I bet he fights in Mutant Clash for fun”, “Maybe he has to sacrifice innocents to maintain his demonic powers?”) and painstakingly trying to avoid getting caught following Peligroso.  Meanwhile the other half is Peligroso wandering around, collecting his dry-cleaning and hanging with his Grandma at the old folks' home playing Bingo, etc.. :D  And of course, there'd be a number of near-misses where Peligroso almost spots them tailing him.  Or alternately he *does* spot them tailing him and finds it amusing enough that he plays along.  I can just see them ‘undercover’ wearing trenchcoats and things and standing out like a sore thumb.  It might even be funny if someone tries to mug them when they're incognito - (panel 1: “Seriously?”, Panel 2: ZAP! POW! THWACK! OW! counts more as humour than action. xD).

Maybe we could lapse into first-person for some bits (particularly the sneaking around ones)  but with so many small stories to tell I figure mostly standard camera view with scene changes etc.

I like some of the ideas I've come up with, too. :D  But I really would like the issue to reveal stuff about the characters that readers (including me) don't already know.  Which means, where at all possible, the characters' creators are the best ones to reveal what their characters get up to.
last edited on Jan. 22, 2015 11:30PM
sux at 4:20AM, Jan. 23, 2015
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Exactly that more or less.
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

Abt_Nihil at 5:31PM, Jan. 23, 2015
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Okay, that's cool! One more question regarding the narrative: Are the individual stories somehow part of the “kids following Peligroso” narrative, or are we going to randomly cut around? I guess the former would be better, but chances are rather low that the kids are going to sneak by everyone on our list, right?
sux at 2:16PM, Jan. 26, 2015
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I've kinda started writing up the first couple of pages mostly just the teens debating about peligroso and such.
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

irrevenant at 5:34PM, Jan. 27, 2015
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Sounds good, SUX.


I was thinking - don't the kids have stuff they want to do for their day off?  I actually think it'd be neat if they only intended to follow Peligroso briefly before going off to do their own things then, before they knew it, they'd used up their entire holiday trailing him.


In terms of how the story as a whole is structured, I was thinking the kids would pass through one or two of the stories, but mostly it'll be standard cuts. It'd be neat if some cuts could be linked by a bit of dialogue or a theme (there's probably a proper name for that). I was pretty much planning to play it by ear. It's hard to do that until the subjects of the individual shorts are nailed down. 


One of the advantages of teleport technology is that you can afford to let people take time off since they can be recalled at an instant's notice if necessary. But someone will still have to stay on monitor duty (I nominate HUB - she seems the type, and I'd like her and Chaos to hang out at base if it's cool with AzuJOD).


I'll start PQing ppl about concepts for the individual stories, but I figure it the story goes something like this:


Everyone's at base, Bombshell is congratulating the team on victory against some offscreen major threat (we could name-drop a villain we plan to have ‘return’ later?). Given how hard everyone's been working and with no threats on the horizon, she orders everyone to take 48 hours off and not come in for anything short of the apocalypse. HUB wants to stay, though and, as a newbie, Chaos doesn't feel the need for R&R yet, so they'll hang at HQ and keep an eye on things. Bombshell might even have arranged for a couple of the ‘reserve members’ - Dr Destiny, Bleeder, Kaleidoskop (who I guess has probably dropped the ‘Jr’ now. :/), Dasien(?), Wireless(?) to be on call for the minor stuff. Chaos would serve in this capacity too, amongst monitor duty. (This is actually a good point to name-drop any up-and-coming characters we intend to include as HA members in future, if any).


Issue title + credits pop up around here.   People start going their separate ways. The kids talk about what they might do, conversation turns to Peligroso and what exactly an eternally-masked demon biker might do for R&R and they decide to tail him.  In the background, Chaos and HUB are wandering off, nattering, people start blinking out by teleporter. We zoom in on one of them and follow them to their story. Then we jump (ideally from an appropriate reference or thematic link) back to the kids, who are probably following Peligroso by this point. Then they turn the corner and gasp, then: cut away to the next story. :D


It'll be a fairly large issue.  Not HA7 large, but at the moment we're looking at:
* Peligroso + the four kids (SUX will have to advise roughly how many pages this will be). 


The following shorts, I'm assuming 1 to (on the outside) 6 pages of story each (except for Spatulator who gets like 2 panels)
* HUB + Chaos (assuming AzuJOD is agreeable) 
* Amalgam
* Azumorph 
* Bombshell
* Kaine
* Mr Imp
* Relik
* Roof Rat 
* SHELL
* Solarcell (?) depending when this goes to air
* The Spatulator
* Titan


We won't necessarily do all those characters, but want a decent spread at least.


(I'm figuring Bujin, Doctor Destiny and Wireless are ‘reserve members’ but any of them could be promoted to a full vignette, too). 
 
last edited on Jan. 28, 2015 3:13AM
irrevenant at 6:37PM, Jan. 27, 2015
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PS. Who are the appropriate contacts/'owners' of Spatula tor, Amalgam and Kaine nowadays? 


P.P.S. Abt_Nihil, I'm assuming you'll want to write the script for the Bombshell segment yourself? 
last edited on Jan. 28, 2015 3:13AM
Abt_Nihil at 6:06AM, Jan. 28, 2015
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Great outline, irrevenant! I'm not sure we'd need six pages for each character though - just off the top of my head, showing Brad Stone on set could be maybe two pages. Most vignettes are really just a glimpse into the characters' lives, not a story of their own, right?
 
And yes, I'd really love to see Kaleidoskop reintroduced. I've actually been planning to write/draw a story for her, so maybe that could even coincide. I've even redesigned her! (I know you said you liked her design, but I really wanted to give her a bit more than a bikini… ^^;)
 
As for Bombshell, I'd be fine with someone else writing her vignette. Actually, I'm not quite sure what we should see her be doing… except that it should be something more funny/lighthearted than we'd expect. Any suggestions?
last edited on Jan. 28, 2015 6:07AM
sux at 7:51AM, Jan. 28, 2015
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I like that idea Ir!!
Spatulator was originally a character submitted by somone whom never contacted us again, I liked the character so I designed him and I even tried to contact the original creator but they never ever responded back.
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

irrevenant at 6:36PM, Jan. 28, 2015
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Yeah, that's up to six pages per character. I imagine most will require considerably less.

Up to you whether you want Kaleidoskop to actually appear in the issue (keeping an eye on HQ?) or just namedrop that she's on call. 

Re: what Bombshell might do on her day off… watch Baywatch? :P

Honestly, I can see her as either the sort of person who bounces from one thing to another restlessly because she can't relax away from work. Or she's the sort of person who applies herself to her leisure with the same efficiency she does everything else : Read from 1pm-2pm.  Bubble bath from 2pm-2:25pm. etc.  I like that idea, actually -  I can see her working through a relaxation agenda/checklist. :D
last edited on Jan. 28, 2015 7:27PM
sux at 5:39PM, Jan. 29, 2015
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I kinda see that with Bombshell as well, like she sticks to a schedule but still takes time to appreciate her relaxation.
I like my horror films like I love my burgers…Full of Cheese!!

irrevenant at 6:07AM, March 12, 2015
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I heard back from Byth1 about Roof Rat.  He would probably spend his day off binge watchin Kung fu movies, meditating with his master Zhan or hanging with his friends at the comic shop he works for.
Abt_Nihil at 3:51PM, March 13, 2015
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Bombshell will probably have a list of TV shows and ice creams to go through :)
Hero at 7:04PM, March 29, 2015
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I think we could use a couple pages of Bombshell making herself an ice cream sundae while listening to gangsta rap. Or rapping to herself about making an ice cream sundae.
K.A.L.A-Dan: Rival!
Abt_Nihil at 7:16AM, April 2, 2015
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YES. That would be the coolest thing!
 
“French vanilla, butter pecan, chocolate deluxe
Even caramel sundaes is gettin' touched
And scooped in my ice cream truck, Wu tears it up”
irrevenant at 6:42PM, April 10, 2015
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Just heard back from Wes_Nero.  Mr Imp would probably be sculpting.  His civilian identity is an artist.
PIT_FACE at 6:56AM, April 14, 2015
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Abt_Nihil wrote:
YES. That would be the coolest thing!
 
“French vanilla, butter pecan, chocolate deluxe
Even caramel sundaes is gettin' touched
And scooped in my ice cream truck, Wu tears it up”
^ I'm telling Oz about this. 
irrevenant at 2:33AM, April 16, 2015
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Fuku shared the following:
On downtime, depending on where he is, SHELL would visit his family's grave, or practice kendo (hobby from his high school days' club activities), or go to a bar/lounge for a quiet drink.

Handsome goes shopping alone for candy stock and sexy underwear. She has a secret sort of fascination with wearing undergarments that make her feel like sexy under her typically manly outerwear.

Ransom binge watches old action flicks on streaming media sites like Netflix or Hulu, mocking the characters on screen, usually eating loads of buffalo wings in the process, and never fails to regret the spicy staple a couple of hours later.
cdmalcolm1 at 12:42PM, April 18, 2015
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I don't even know how to go about this idea yet. Um SolarCell would be living at HQ for observation of her powers. This would be ordered by Bombshell and Shell. She would currently hang out with RuffRat and Imp at the start. As time goes on meet with others on the team. Bombshell would be training SolarCell on how to use her uncontroling powers for only an hour in the mornings to cut down on the discharges of solar flares. So basically from 8am to when ever she will be walking around doing stuff and interact with different people coming in and out of the Base. I'll explan this in her story.


She can be invited to go on missions but I think bombshell would have to use her as a pawn to win if it should come up. Anyway. SolarCell would be interacting with HA team members during downtime. On Other notes: I'll be using the Spatulator As a friend to her as well as others on the team. This story will be life around SolarCell at HA. Kind of. It will be sort of like mini adventures and life with Heroes Alliance in her eyes.


This of course take place in her own comic series. Just keep look out.

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