Episode 402 - Audience expectations with characters

Nov 25, 2018

We're all back together this week and we're chatting about audience expectations for characters versus the intentions of the creator. Which is more important? Well it's a bit of a balancing act… You don't want to pander to your audience because that's not fun and they won't enjoy it anyway, but by the same token you shouldn't just do whatever you feel like regardless. As a creator you build up a contract between yourself and the audience; if you betray that by subverting their expectations with characters in ways that are very “OUT of character” just because you feel like it then you can start to lose their respect and attention. Killing off characters all of a sudden can be a big responsibility too, try not to take that lightly.

Topics and Show Notes

Taking characters in unexpected directions is fine and can energise your audience, but you should try and set it up or give plausible reasons for it after the fact. As the creator it's tempting to just think of yourself as the absolute monarch-god-emperor of the world you've created, with license to make any changes and do whatever you want, but if you want people to read, follow along with, and enjoy your work then you have to take a little more care. Don't abuse your audience because without them, what's the point?

This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Froggtree Comics. Slip into the shadowy club, sidle into a booth and watch the action on the dancefloor. Quiet, subdued disco. This track wants to party but not be too obvious about it… till it gets up the courage to join the throng and strut its stuff!

Topics and shownotes

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Only for Patrons who donate $5 or more, here - https://www.patreon.com/DrunkDuck

Featured comic:
The Muscle Corps - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2018/nov/20/featured-comic-the-muscle-corps/

Links:
From Mks monsters forum thread here - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/forum/topic/178044/
Mks monsters - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/mks_monsters/

Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
kawaiidaigakusei - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/kawaiidaigakusei/
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/banes
Pitface - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/PIT_FACE/
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean

Featured music:
Froggtree Comics - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Froggtree_Comics/, by Skreem, rated E.

Episode 296 - What came before?

Nov 7, 2016

5 likes, 0 comments

Tantz Aerine, Banes and Pitface join me, Ozoneocean, to talk about back stories, histories and all that extra knowledge you can come up with when creating your story. It can inform your comic story in a really clever way… but don't be tempted to vomit all that knowledge out on your unsuspecting audience! They'll hate you for it. It' a really great idea to come up with a detailed history and you can be really proud of it too, but you have to know how to present it to your audience, i.e. through your character interaction and the flow of your story. Gunwallace's featured music for this week was… THE LAST PICK UP ARTIST! This has a nice dry, rock feel, heavy guitar. This is music for cruising in a muscle car.

Episode 205 - What about bodyshape?

Feb 9, 2015

6 likes, 6 comments

This week Banes and I were inspired to talk about body shape in the depiction of figures in comics, inspired by some famous images from photographer Howard Schatz's 2002 book, Athlete. In it there are photos of many athletes who're at the peak of their sports and yet their bodyshapes are vastly different, subverting the idea of an "ideal" bodyshape or what it means to be a top athlete or even fit. too often bodyshapes in comics follow a very narrow range, not getting much past what we think of as the current popculture ideal. We all know that idealised model shape is a problem and yet we all still perpetuate it, most of the time you can only tell most "realistic" characters apart by their hairstyle or costume, especially in superhero comics. And that invents a second problem: the myth of the "normal" shaped body as opposed to the ideal- there IS no such thing as normal, and even the ideal is always changing throughout the ages. There's even a lot more to body shape than the famous categories: Mesomorph, Ectomorph, and Endomorph, or Skinny, Pear, Athletic, Hourglass and Apple. We also have a beif mention of how stylised characters (Sponge Bob, Calvin and Hobbes etc) are exaggerations of these shapes and differences.

Episode 201 - The Improvisationcast

Jan 13, 2015

5 likes, 7 comments

Pitface joins the duo of Banes and Ozoneocean once again, this time for the Improvisationcast! Pitface and Tantz Aerine do a lot of writing together when they work jointly on their script for Brave Resistance, but in order to further exercise their creative and collaborative muscles they also practise a turn by turn writing style where they improvise a story as they go. They start off with their own comic characters, one writes an intro and a bit with their character and the next one carries on after with their own character and also weaving the first person's character into the story with them, and so on. In the end you can produce a startling organic story that has forced you to examine the way your character would react to totally unfamiliar situations and stimuli. In this Quackcast we all experiment with this by doing an improvised play with characters we make up on the spot, to very mixed results....


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