Tag Archives: Tommy Lee Edwards
I just participated in a comic book. No, I did not colour-in the black and white volume one of Akira that I borrowed from a friend years ago but never read. I watched the first episode of a new motion comic called Brandon Generator (www.brandongenerator.com) which is by Edgar Wright, Tommy Lee Edwards and YOU/me.
I know I haven’t been a big fan of motion comics in the past, but this is a little different. Instead of taking already completed comic books, cutting out the characters, and crudely making them walk around a panel, this was built for motion comics from the ground up. Instead of having someone read word bubbles and narrator boxes, the script was written with a voice-only narrator in mind.
Anyway, enough of my back peddling. This comic is about a writer who is having trouble writing at all. He sits in front of his computer and wastes the day just trying to think of something to write. Eventually, he passes out and when he wakes up he’s astonished to find that his computer, voice mail, and doodle pad are all filled with ideas. This is where the you/me element comes in. Viewers are invited to contribute their ideas which may be featured in future episodes.
It’s pretty cool and, so far, very well done. It certainly helps that the writer is the brains behind some fantastic movies (Shaun Of The Dead, Hot Fuzz, and Scott Pilgrim), and the artist (most notably 1985 with Mark Millar) has a really unique style that seems to lend itself to this idea. The art is sort of sketchy, and despite the motion around it, it always feels very much like a comic book.
The story also spoke to me more than it might others. I have deluded myself into thinking I’m some sort of writer, but I have a bit of a hard time actually buckling down. (As evidenced by the fact that these columns are always posted at the last minute.) A guy who doesn’t seem to have any ideas, and then suddenly wakes up to millions of them is definitely appealing.
I find the best way to generate ideas is to have a framework. I mean, that’s why there’s so much fan fiction out there. There’s already a nice set of established rules and characters for you to jimmy in your new ideas. Brandon Generator offers a very base framework to break your own writer’s block and help alleviate someone else’s. Even if that someone else is a crudely animated drawing on your computer screen.
I didn’t bother leaving a voice-mail for Mr. Generator as I don’t necessarily want my nervous rambling to be played for the internet should it be used. I also didn’t agonize over some terrible drawing that I would intend to be a beautiful princess, but would end up being used as some hideous monster. What I did do is write something. There’s a 500 character limit, which suits me just fine. Seeing as how it’s highly unlikely that it’ll be used in the actual thing, I figure I might as well get something out of it and post it here.
“Despite not living on a planet, the people of Pluto thought they had the most interesting world in the Solar System. Jupiterians had the most interesting weather, Saturnalians had the best rings, and Terrans had the most water. But, Pluto had the one thing everyone else wanted – time. In one year a Plutonian could accomplish more than a Terran could in their entire lifetime. Sadly, the thing they accomplished most was shoveling.”
Graham Becksted and Madonna both encourage you watch the motion comic and then express yourself. He is the author of Graham’s Grumbles the second blog by that name that is listed in Google results when you search for Graham’s Grumbles. If you would like to be his 61st follower (thank you, bots), he can be followed on Twitter @GrahamBecksted.