Friday, July 31, 2009

Vigilante Granny/ Black and white comic on the web... must be a gritty story, or a noir -oh wait it isn't


Vigilante Granny was a July Zuda contestant that finished in 7th place. The creators are Don Kunkel, larq2525@yahoo.com, and CPWilsonIII. Here is the synopsis: If Superheroes think it’s hard trying to hide their secret identities from the public, just imagine what 78-year-old Faye Justis goes through trying to explain all of her bruises and tattered clothing to her family. When old age forced Faye to hang up her revealing spandex super heroine costume, she assumed that some younger; more in-shape do-gooder would take over as the protector of the city. So far, no one new has risen to the challenge, so Faye still finds herself regularly battling the forces of evil (though her scantily costume remains in a box in her closet). Our story revolves around Faye as she tries to fit in with her elderly friends and be a part of her son and grandson’s lives, though a slew of various villains constantly make it difficult for her to simply live a quiet life. Our story revolves around a string of kidnappings, which have been occurring throughout the city Faye inhabits and sometimes begrudgingly protects. The kidnappings had been flying well below Faye’s radar, what with bigger crises like massive, murderous robots and horrifying mutant creatures keeping her busy. However, when her grandson Ronnie is taken captive, Faye is on the case. Not to be confused with the most patient individual on the planet, Faye fumbles her way through the investigative process, attempting to locate her missing loved one, all the while keeping up an ignorant fa├žade to fool her son and his wife into thinking that she knows nothing about the case.

Color your super-hero comics

The black and white is the first thing you notice of -course- when reading this story. it would have worked well for a dark super hero story, but that's not what this is. The idea of a granny with super powers has all kinds of possibilities if the creators really want to work the set-up. The second thing you notice is the great page layouts especially in the various thought balloon panels, a cool idea well executed. Readers get a joke about Jeopardy as a lead in to this comic's second full page shot on screen 4, which is a pretty good joke. Not to mention shots of Vigilante Granny knitting up a storm. The various sound effects, and letters are very well done. Another full page shot features Granny facing off with a giant robot. Their are a number of full page shots in these 8 screens all of which would have more impact with color. Their is a nice innovative panel layout on screen 6 for Granny's taking down of the big giant robot which really impressed me. The most impressive thing about this comic are the screen layouts, and their use in setting the pace of this story. Big explosions just look better in color, they just do, this would have made the ending sequence of Granny trying to escape the blast much more visually grabbing. I did enjoy the contrast of Granny's thoughts vs. the expanding blast radius, but having thought balloon's and text box thought balloons... Pick a style (skip the text box thought balloons), and stick with it.

Would someone born in 1931 like, use like -you know?


I didn't get the use of the word like, or seriously -but I figure their has to be a reason for it. Maybe she mentored some younger valley girl heroes and picked up the habit, maybe one of her old villains talked like that and possessed her mind. Their does need to be a reason for it in the context of the story, otherwise it can throw readers off. The creators did too much synopsis for the 8 screens presented. I lot of people don't even read them, but those who do wondered where some of the set-up was for future events in the 8 screens provided. It wasn't a bad entry, but the concept wasn't realized, meaning not much of a laugh riot, in the 8 screens readers have. It would have been better to just skip the comedy tag, and go with Superhero action/adventure with the occasional light moments. The synopsis was more of a hook to me as a reader, than the 8 screen promo, which isn't what creators want to go for. Vigilante Granny as a character couldn't get it done in the screens allowed, but I do hope to see all the creators back again.

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