Eternal Descent Notebook #05

Who doesn’t love a cliffhanger?

I grew up on repeat screenings of Flash Gordon and Buck Rogers Republic serials that used to air in the UK around 6pm on BBC2 during the week. This was a dumping ground for all the cool stuff that would eventually shape my life. The Invaders, Star Trek, Monkey and The Water Margin amongst others. But the old black n white episodes of Buster Crabbe kicking ass set the bar very high indeed when it came to making you want to devour the next episode instantly.

Watching your hero fall off a building is what I call a page turner and there was no question about changing this sequence too much from how it’s handled in the comic. Especially since Llexi’s solution to Lyra’s impending death allows him to have his cake and eat it.

We’ll have a look at how exactly he accomplishes that and what, if anything, I’ve added…

Tomorrow.

Cue music:

4 May 2012 ·

Eternal Descent Notebook #04

Let’s take a look at the first action sequence in the script:

Remember the above excerpt is a first draft and I tend to write long on a first pass.

If this was a feature script the first thing I’d be trying to do on a second pass was reduce the amount of ink on the page. But the final draft will be going to the animation guys and they actually want a lot more information. Specific information. So the next step is to flesh out what I’m calling GUITAR-FU here and let them know exactly how I see Sirian take these guys apart.

Again I’ll be talking this through with Llexi to see if we can’t create one or two signature moves here for Sirian that will translate easily to the game version of Eternal Descent that he’s working on.

I’m guessing the final product will feel and read a lot more like a comic book script than a feature or TV script. Luckily I’ve had a lot of practice tackling all of these formats over the last couple of years.

I’d already slipped in one new character just prior to this for Lyra to interact with and while the first incarnation of Loki is pretty much intact I also added a little detail here with the bible burning.

The biggest change from comic to animation though was making Lyra a little more proactive over the next page or so. I didn’t want to see her chased to the FALL (a key moment I’ll get to in another post), but rather wanted her to take a firmer grip on her destiny. We see the distracted Sirian doing his thing intercut with Lyra running Loki down. This makes Sirian a little more self-absorbed and Lyra less of a victim.

Maybe it also makes Loki a little more cunning. No bad thing.

Cue music:

Note: You don’t wanna know how many times I’ve written ‘horde’ as ‘hoard’. Stupid brain.

2 May 2012 ·

Eternal Descent Notebook #03

This little lot popped up on Twitter last night:

This is neat. The Eternal Descent team have been pairing up parts of my first draft with the graphic novel.

They’ve also subtly altered some art to reflect the draft as I wasn’t trying to simply recreate the comic.

Not sure they can keep this up for the whole script, but it’s a neat way to look at the process.

No art for the brand new sequences yet, but we’ll be amping all that stuff up next.

If you’ve read the first issue/graphic novel you’ll notice that this version of Sirian is missing something. Don’t panic. We’re just saving them for later.

Cue music:

1 May 2012 ·

Eternal Descent Notebook #02

This week I’m digging into the first draft of the animated Eternal Descent script to see what works and what to BURN.

I tried to stay as close to the original two issues of the comic as possible, but identified along the way a few places where the story could be fleshed out.

The comic kinda hits the ground running with Lyra falling into the hands of Loki, but I wanted to have a think about why she was in this particular spot to begin with. A touch of back story was added by simply introducing a new character for Lyra to interact with before her life is changed forever:

It’s not the last we see of Amy and while she’s not a major addition it does give us the opportunity to learn a little bit more about where Lyra’s head is at just prior to things getting wild.

Also right now the dialogue is the least polished aspect of the script. I’ll be checking with Llexi to see if I cut out any lines he’s particularly fond of as I’d like the next draft to be more of a collaboration. I cut up his baby quite a bit so its important the little bastard is still recognisable when the bandages come off.

Then we’ll work on her diction.

I said diction.

The first draft was also on the short side to allow room for the action sequences. I’ll tackle that process tomorrow.

Cue music:

Note: the top image is taken from the original comic with a slice of relevant first draft script attached. I’ll throw more of these pieces out as I tackle them via Twitter, but they’ll all be collected on the Indiegogo page. Cheers.

30 April 2012 ·

Eternal Descent Notebook #01

So let’s get into Eternal Descent.

On the surface it’s about this fallen angel type dude kicking the crap out of evil with his guitar and being hit in the face with a huge hammer by a demon.

Sirian and Loki. Sirian broods a lot and hangs out with a priest. Loki prefers to have more fun and recline on furniture made from the souls of the damned. They’ve been doing this for a long time and seem to be pretty evenly matched. Then along comes a girl.

It’s always about a girl, right?

Lyra. Lead guitarist and vocalist in a metal band called Constellation 9. I’m guessing she didn’t get where she is without learning how to deal with unwanted attention. But then these two jokers turn up.

Next thing you know Lyra is caught in the middle of one of those classic battles of Good vs Evil. She may be out of her depth, but Sirian and Loki don’t know what’s hit them. They may think they have a handle on the situation, but they don’t. They really don’t.

Did I mention she’s also a succubus? Fun. Book.

Published by the good folks over at IDW, music provides the backbone to the series. So much in fact that the graphic novel comes complete with its own soundtrack. Each episode also features appearances by real-life musicians who are all too keen to get into it with Loki and Sirian. Sometimes they survive. Sometimes they get served to a T Rex. Sometimes they get a guitar through the chest. Check out the trailer.

A couple of months ago I was asked if I’d be interested in adapting Eternal Descent into an animated series (press release time). Part of an Indiegogo campaign ($10k and climbing) this is my first stab at a crowd-funded project, but not my first adaptation. Draft one of the script was delivered last week so as I nail the second one I’ll be talking about the writing process here.

And metal.

And of immovable objects and irresistible forces kicking the crap out of each other.

And telling you to watch cool stuff.

Cue music:

Sweet. I’ll also be rambling about this on Twitter with the hashtag #EDpilot

Rock and roll.

26 April 2012 ·

One of the things I’m up to at the moment.

26 April 2012 ·

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