Ask Ian #5 - The Return

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Postby TheSlyder » Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:38 am

Yeah, that was a semi-confusing issue.

He ended up turning into Super Sonic, and ran across the planet, tuning into a billion other forms(Eco Sonic, Polar Sonic, some red Sonic, etc.) and then ended up with his new design.

I'm fine with that, but seriously, they could've just said "Hey, look at me, I bought some buckles to put on my shoes." Rather than making it part of his transformation.

Edit:

And oh, Ian. There's absolutely nothing wrong with Team Artail's characters or artists :D Why, when I was but a wee lad on my father's computer on the weekends, I used to browse the archives, and admire stuff. Imagine my suprise when I saw Dawn Best and J. Axer in the Archie credits.

I was just making the comparison, because often on TA, people will make fan characters that dress in baggy t-shirts and pants, with shades on, etc. And Ash's clothing, hair, and whatnot just reminded me of that.
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Postby Ian Flynn » Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:55 am

You people and your insightful questions! And answering some of them for me!

H'okay, here we go...

Pundit wrote:And now more questions for Ian! I know you've been asked straight up who your favorite characters are, but I think you answered as a fan. Speaking from the perspective of the writer, which characters do you find _interesting_? Which characters excite your interest as a _writer_, without taking into account whether you'd be willing to sit down and have a civilized drink with them? I know there are fairly obvious answers to that - Sonic and Knuckles, to name a few, but i'm interested in the more obscure ones. Has the premise behind any villian, obscure hero or bit player ever made you sit down and think - hey, there's something deep here, some potential that could be realized that might add to the main story in unexpected ways? Anyone that makes your mind go - hey, he/she/it might have made (or could make?) an unexpected contribution to the continuity if we'd tweaked the focus of the story? I think the Archie universe is full of these little bits of narrative potential, and it would be nice to see you examine some of the darker stars in it.


Simple answer: Any villain. Any of them. In my mind I have back-stories and personal breakdowns for each member of the Destructix, and sadly they only get enough screen time to be beat up. The villains are easily the ones I can dive into first.

The heroes - again, any of them - take me a minute to get into since goodie-goodie isn't nearly as fun as rotten (blame the Scourge in me). But once there I find the reason why I enjoy the heroes - because they're good people. They have their flaws too, everyone does, but it's what they do and how they do it that makes them the heroic characters they are.

Sir Connery is one example I think you were fishing for. I would have loved to have spent more time showing his work as a paladin hunting down the dark magic users. Sadly his exploits were regulated to a line of dialogue and his holy heroism kept to his sacrifice against Mogul. I am very happy with how and what I got to show in the end, though. I'm not looking the gift horse (har har!) in the mouth here.

There's a lot of character investigation that will show up in future issues that will be a better answer to your question than me answering here and now. Keep with us on the road to #175 for some looks into/changes for the Freedom Fighters. Once I get my business in Knothole/with the FF settled(ish), I'll be moving the focus back to Angel Island for a bit, and heaven knows we have a ton of stuff to play with there.

Goldanas wrote:Also, what are you dressing up as for Halloween, Ian?


I briefly toyed with the idea of Dr. Eggman. Maybe those stream-wading rubber pants/boots, a hacked-together jacket, shave the ol' noggin and face and put together a faux-fur mustache. It would be terrifying on many levels. Sadly, my workplace would frown on that, the holiday snuck up on me, and Kureejii Lea would kill me if I shaved my head.

So nothing this year. Maybe next year.

Concering M25YL-Knuckles wrote:
PseudoCompulsionn wrote:
ME wrote:I would figure if the timeline changed the exact instant Sonic left Knuckels would instantly take up the slack. I always thought of Knuckles as the kinda guy who had Sonic's back. They are rivals but more or less friends.


I'm not really going to try to rationalize the, er, dubious science of the M:25YL arc, but remember that, when the timeline changed, it wasn't just that the world was suddenly different. The differences were all the result of 25 years of altered history. We don't really know what happened to Knuckles in those 25 years to make him throw his lot in with Shadow. The way I imagine it, all of a sudden Knuckles, chief enforcer for King Shadow (for whatever reason), had memories of a different past, and decided to act on his new knowledge, hence his helping Sonic, Tails and Lara-Su.

Did that make sense? It's hard to write about.


I couldn't have put it better myself. Good show!

Concerning Knuckles' knuckles wrote:
TheSlyder wrote:What's up with Knuckles' knuckles? Under those gloves, does he have two spikes growing, or what? If so, are they like Wolverine's, in the sense that they're bone potruding from the skin? (Because can you imagine how painful it would be to punch something with them if there was a layer of nerves and skin covering them?)

Faded-Myth wrote:Having said that, the Archie explanation for Knuckles' trademarks is genetic mutation, brought upon by his own father experimenting on him. Personally I prefer the old "Born with 'em" explanation.

[Pundit's Image]


Another one well taken care of. Thanks folks!

TheSlyder wrote:Do you know what the process of character creation is like with the comic? (Is there one person in charge of designing characters, or is it just the artist that happens to be doing the issue that they debut in?) I'm curious about thi mostly because of Ash.


There hasn't been any really new characters during my tenure. For Scourge, see the past Script Bits!. For a very near-future character (some of you might see him already), I'll explain in the Script Bits!. We may have to wait for a truly new character to come along before I answer that question.

Ash is a funny story. He was designed by Jon "WB" Gray, who I worked with a good bit when I first got on the book. Once onboard, I teased him that Ash looked like a punk recolor of "Ian Potto," an old fan-character of mine. WB apologized when he realized how close the designs were - it was totally incidental. We had a good laugh about it.

Kamal wrote:In 167, why was Shadow ruling from Angel Island? And how did Sonic get up there?


It's a magically-fortified continent eight miles in the sky. That's pretty secure, and empowers Shadow. As for Sonic - he appeared there. Through magic.

sonicxfactor wrote:know how the Chaos Emeralds came to be in the first place (in the GBU arc I think) but do you think that the Mobius emeralds and alien emeralds may have some kind of connection with each other?


1) That origin is refuted in #165
2) Yes. Yes there is.

Concerning Fingers wrote:
Goldanas wrote:But in addition to that, what's up with only three fingers!? I mean come on! Three fingers! Humans have four (in addition to a thumb which probably counts as a finger but that's a completely different can of worms), so why can't these fictitious, talking, cartoon animals have them? Where are the physics!?

Tracy Yardley! wrote:I don't know if anyone's noticed, but I draw everyone with four fingers. I mean, all the Sega characters have four fingers, and I've always drawn hands with four fingers, and it would drive me crazy trying to remember who's got four and who's got three. Sorry if I've ruined the continuity ;)


I can't recall the issue number off the top of my head, but Nate Morgan once explained that humans and mobians had four fingers while Overlanders and some mobians had three. Except the number has fluctuated over time, so there is no consistency. I've got no problem with Tracy working his magic while giving everyone a full hand.

As for why there are varying number of fingers, blame it on the Gene Bomb that hit the cosmic reset button on evolution.

PseudoCompulsionn wrote:Didn't Sonic's eyes turn green after some power boost (can't remember if it was rings or emeralds)? I remember because it also gave him buckles on his shoes. Which makes perfect sense!


Before my time!
Again, I can't recall the issue number exactly, but it was a result of Sonic sapping power off the Green Super Emerald and getting hit with Dr. Eggman's/RoboRobotnik's Quantum Beam.

EDIT: Quit posting so fast! GAH! This wasn't a full 13 pages when I started writing this!
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Postby TheSlyder » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:09 am

Can't take the heat, Ian?


OH SNAP! I KNOW HE DI'ENT.
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Postby Ian Flynn » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:34 am

Oh I can take it. It's just the more that piles up, the longer it takes to get through them and less time I have for things like Ask Bean and Script Bits!

Careful when you play with fire - YOU GON' GET BURNED, FOO!
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Postby ME » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:34 am

I'm not really going to try to rationalize the, er, dubious science of the M:25YL arc, but remember that, when the timeline changed, it wasn't just that the world was suddenly different. The differences were all the result of 25 years of altered history. We don't really know what happened to Knuckles in those 25 years to make him throw his lot in with Shadow. The way I imagine it, all of a sudden Knuckles, chief enforcer for King Shadow (for whatever reason), had memories of a different past, and decided to act on his new knowledge, hence his helping Sonic, Tails and Lara-Su.

Did that make sense? It's hard to write about.


Thanks that makes plenty enough sense. I just, I dont know, found it really out of character. If we ever return to M25yl I would like to know what happened to make Knuckles throw his lot in with an evil dictator on his island.

::edited to make sense.::
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Postby Goldanas » Mon Oct 30, 2006 12:12 pm

Although I was just joking around, you guys went ahead and answered the question anyway, which honestly surprised me. I didn't think it was that big of a deal, but I guess it's a hot topic in the comic book business.

It's always chill to hear about the inner-workings of Archie. Thanks for giving me a heads up, fellas.

Plus, I love it when Tracy! stops in. Now if we can just get Jim Amash and Jason Jenson--the unsung heroes--in here, we'd really get this party started.

Also, Ian, I've got some heat for you:

-What did you submit to Archie when you were vying for application and trying to get in? What kind of stuff was it? Was it limited to one field? Was it Sonic-specific? Etc.
-What's up with the 'Usergroups' button up at the top of the page?

Rock on, as always.
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Postby PseudoCompulsionn » Mon Oct 30, 2006 3:19 pm

IanPotto wrote:I couldn't have put it better myself. Good show!

W00t for me!

And yeah, I know that Sonic's character model update was before your time. But still, something about his shoe buckles coming from a power-up cracks me up.
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Postby Kureejii Lea » Mon Oct 30, 2006 9:26 pm

TheSlyder wrote:And oh, Ian. There's absolutely nothing wrong with Team Artail's characters or artists :D


Que? =P

ME wrote:
I'm not really going to try to rationalize the, er, dubious science of the M:25YL arc, but remember that, when the timeline changed, it wasn't just that the world was suddenly different. The differences were all the result of 25 years of altered history. We don't really know what happened to Knuckles in those 25 years to make him throw his lot in with Shadow. The way I imagine it, all of a sudden Knuckles, chief enforcer for King Shadow (for whatever reason), had memories of a different past, and decided to act on his new knowledge, hence his helping Sonic, Tails and Lara-Su.

Did that make sense? It's hard to write about.


Thanks that makes plenty enough sense. I just, I dont know, found it really out of character. If we ever return to M25yl I would like to know what happened to make Knuckles throw his lot in with an evil dictator on his island.

::edited to make sense.::


Well, here are a few things to consider:

- Shadow, at that point, it seems, was ruler of Mobius; Knuckles is still more or less the chief enforcer of the island itself. To work as Guardian, it'd more or less have to do so under Shadow.
- Outside of the dirty underground doings, Portal and the everything else under the rule of Shadow doesn't seem to be doing too badly. Even Shadow honestly believes he's done plenty of good - with some sacrifices. This isn't to justify the methods of Shadow's rule (who seems to be of an end-justifies-the-means kind of mentality), just to put it in perspective. In a way it's a kind of dystopia; things are great for the most part, but there are some exceptions that can't be disregarded. So Knuckles working under him would not be actively siding with an "evil dictator" (especially if, at the time, he thought that Sally would help balance things out, as she did); indeed, things could have been going fairly well until the core really started to become corrupted. When it was realised how "wrong" things had become in that timeline and there was now an opportunity, Knuckles acted to change things. That doesn't seem out of character at all.
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Postby TheSlyder » Mon Oct 30, 2006 10:17 pm

Kureejii Lea wrote:
TheSlyder wrote:And oh, Ian. There's absolutely nothing wrong with Team Artail's characters or artists :D


Que? =P



Oh, it was you who said that. Heh, my bad. I was thinking it was The Ianator for some reason.
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Postby ME » Mon Oct 30, 2006 11:11 pm

Well, here are a few things to consider:

- Shadow, at that point, it seems, was ruler of Mobius; Knuckles is still more or less the chief enforcer of the island itself. To work as Guardian, it'd more or less have to do so under Shadow.
- Outside of the dirty underground doings, Portal and the everything else under the rule of Shadow doesn't seem to be doing too badly. Even Shadow honestly believes he's done plenty of good - with some sacrifices. This isn't to justify the methods of Shadow's rule (who seems to be of an end-justifies-the-means kind of mentality), just to put it in perspective. In a way it's a kind of dystopia; things are great for the most part, but there are some exceptions that can't be disregarded. So Knuckles working under him would not be actively siding with an "evil dictator" (especially if, at the time, he thought that Sally would help balance things out, as she did); indeed, things could have been going fairly well until the core really started to become corrupted. When it was realised how "wrong" things had become in that timeline and there was now an opportunity, Knuckles acted to change things. That doesn't seem out of character at all.


Again more good points.
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Postby Ian Flynn » Tue Oct 31, 2006 8:43 am

Goldanas wrote:What did you submit to Archie when you were vying for application and trying to get in? What kind of stuff was it? Was it limited to one field? Was it Sonic-specific? Etc.


At the time, StH was running lead stories of about 12 pages and back-ups of 5-6 pages. I composed a script for a 12-page stand alone, a 6-page part one-of-many, and a 5-page stand-alone.

The 12-pager played on old continuity and was pretty much the standard script: action, humor, adventure. The 6-pages was more of a talkie-drama and the 5-page was definitely more humor than action.

I'll have to go through them to see if there's any elements I might be reusing in the future. If it's safe, I could conceivably post them so y'all can see what got me in the door. No promises - I may not even be able to find the files!

Goldanas wrote:What's up with the 'Usergroups' button up at the top of the page?


I honestly don't know. It might be a way of making clubs or exclusive membership, but I already manage that through the titles and such.

TheSlyder wrote:I was thinking it was The Ianator for some reason.


Oh man - you can't say things like that! Now I'm going to spend all day walking stiffly, making robot gear-noises, and assuring people that I will be back.

*vrrt-whrr-vrrt-whrr*
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Postby ME » Tue Oct 31, 2006 10:26 am

IanPotto wrote:
I'll have to go through them to see if there's any elements I might be reusing in the future. If it's safe, I could conceivably post them so y'all can see what got me in the door. No promises - I may not even be able to find the files!


Really?! That would be totally awsome if you could!
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Postby TheSlyder » Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:28 am

The usergroups, in my forum experiences, are things like Admins, Moderators, Users, and any others that the admin wishes to create.

Why it claims that there are no such groups when you click on it is beyond me.


Ian, if I slipped you a Lincoln, would you hook me up with a job at Archie?
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Postby Goldanas » Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:47 pm

I wouldn't want to deprive you of any awesome story elements, Ian, or, for that matter, any dubiously silly jokes you may have put into one of the more comedic stories.

However, were you to have milked your submissions for all they're worth, I personally wouldn't mind taking a gander at them.


...You'll probably see a lot of submissions from writers coming in as soon as you make your stuff public. Myself not included, of course... of course... of course...


...


Of course...
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Postby Pundit » Wed Nov 01, 2006 11:13 am

Question time, Ian ;o

I'm sure you'll agree that the comic has seen a spate of death lately. Besides the obvious use of death as a plot mechanism to _ahem_ tie up loose ends and collapse complications, someone on another forum brought up an interesting point about how it can give certain characters/situations the kind of impact that they couldn't possibly achieve otherwise. So my question to you is - how do you see the general role of death in the narrative? When do you decide that we've had enough and its time to turn to other non-fatal means to resolve plot points? Given that we've historically seen _very selective_ use of death (i'm talking about way back, maybe pre 100), do you see a return to those principles or will death remain a not-uncommon occurance in the comic?

Finally, the capstone. I understand you might be reluctant to give a specific answer that might tie your hands, but as far as you can tell us, should we expect anymore significant character deaths in the near term (eh... I mean the next half a year or so)?

If it's safe, I could conceivably post them so y'all can see what got me in the door.


Sounds good to me too, if you can :P
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