Book 2 – Page 37

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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby CorrTerek » Thu Jul 29, 2010 4:31 pm

not to be offensive, but i find this last page a bit below standard and quite disappointed. i'm aware that this kind of conversation improves the story, but these episodes should be text updates don't you agree?


I don't. I seem to recall someone saying that the text updates wouldn't be included in the published book, and if that's the case, then this page was necessary to the story. Most of the text updates simply give us "behind-the-scenes" info that will be revealed or touched upon later in the main comic anyway. This update is by no means "behind-the-scenes" info.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Sieggy » Thu Jul 29, 2010 8:34 pm

Actually, I'd LOVE to see more text pages in the finished book that would go into deeper exposition. With a nice piece of art on each text page, it would be a nice way to advance the story in a non-graphical manner.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Hiai » Thu Jul 29, 2010 8:39 pm

Ok, have you ever written a long, insightful (you think) post, interrupted often, then tried to post it, only to show that you've timed out and it's all lost because you have to sign in again? Yeah, that sucks. However, it made me realize the post was hugely too long anyhow, so let me just briefly summarize a few points instead:

1. Still on the "Jillian's middle name is Sue" team. Nothing she has done has ever displayed anything but the most cursory thought or feeling toward those that are supposedly her "loved ones", and all the crazy stuff she gets away with is always because of someone's else's brilliance, not because of her own devices. We saw what happens when she has her own ideas...she gets captured by the enemy (more than once!) gets her forces killed, and ALWAYS fails to defend the people she supposedly cares about. Shallow, violent, bloodthirsty, vengeful, slutty...gee what queenly characteristics, eh?

2. I miss Vinnie. Why can't he and Wanda both see the light, abandon their current course, and hook up? lol

3. Jack is awesome. What he sees in Jillian is beyond me, but her passing him over for Ansom is just more proof of what a moron she is.

4. I never said Parson and Tramennis were the same, I merely said they parallel each other. Argue what you like about Parson's "advantages", but Tramennis has his own advantages (like knowing the rulles, for instance), and I think they are pretty evenly matched, considering. Charlie may well be Parson's arch-nemesis (he's too inscrutable to know for sure), but Tramennis, at this point in time, is definitely Parson's counterpart. I would love to see them somehow on the same side someday. That would truly be Erf-changing.

5. I'm used to people taking exception to my view of Stanley. Arguing about his bad memory for names as a sign of what a dipshit he is would probably not be that convincing though, when viewed in the context of his past history. The very attempt to do so, successful or not, is what I point to as evidence that he's at least TRYING to grow into a better leader. I never said he was great, just that I see some potential in him. I am kind of fond of him actually, because he seems like a socially retarded kid who is trying desperately to figure out how to fit in with the cool kids. Always love to root for the underdog, even if they are a bit obnoxious! lol
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Oberon » Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:17 pm

BLANDCorporatio wrote:The thing is, Royalty is costly to maintain. Slately does have, occasionaly, to make "stupid" decisions based on principle.
There is no evidence that he is forced to make stupid decisions purely due to his status as a Royal. So where is the cost to being a Royal Side?

Erfworld Royalty may bear some other price, similar to the give and take in SM Civilization for the various government types. Be a Royal, advantages:
* Better unit stats
* Faster leveling for Nobles
* Improved diplomacy with other Royals
Disadvantages:
* A penalty to diplomacy with non-Royal Sides
* Higher city upkeep (all those nigh-useless courtiers to maintain)

But again, no evidence...
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby CorrTerek » Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:24 pm

Actually, I'd LOVE to see more text pages in the finished book that would go into deeper exposition. With a nice piece of art on each text page, it would be a nice way to advance the story in a non-graphical manner.


Oh, I agree. I'm just tired of people saying that any update that contains more exposition than action, or confirms something we've already suspected, is a sub-par update. Many times, our suspicions are founded on something mentioned in the text updates. If the text updates are going to be excluded from the finished book, then all new readers will have to rely on are the comics themselves. So we need exposition in the main comic sometimes.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Oberon » Thu Jul 29, 2010 9:31 pm

Donoterase wrote:Everyone else has to pay their dues in some form, except Jill. Sure, she lost Ansom. But Jillian herself has mentioned lovers are a fleeting thing for her, and she has him back again (albeit in altered form). She had no particular attachment to her father or kingdom and has no real friends. So Jillian is kind of like a wandering act of chaos prancing all over Erfworld, forcing everyone around her to pick up the pieces again after her passing.
Without voicing any support or criticism of Jillian, I feel compelled to point out the trope of the unattached ladies man (or gentlemans woman a la Pretty Woman) who finally finds their true love. In this aspect Jillian is playing right along: A free spirited woman mercenary who occasionally sleeps with her clients. Now finds herself unexpectedly (I finally realized who I'm here for) in love with a single other (Ansom) who she is seeking to establish permanency with despite the obvious obstacles (Decrypted and in the thrall of her former lover, a nice plot twist!) in her path. It's very cookie cutter romantic comedy, actually.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:44 am

Oberon wrote:There is no evidence that he is forced to make stupid decisions purely due to his status as a Royal. So where is the cost to being a Royal Side?


The cost of Royalty is the bum-pine Slately and most of his sons have: ritual parley before attacking, rigid protocol, not hiring Charlie based on suspicions of Toolism. The evidence is right before our eyes, don't be willfuly contrarian .... oh wait .... carry on.
The whole point of this is lost if you keep it a secret.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Geordy » Fri Jul 30, 2010 6:18 am

CTRL+A, CTRL+C -> Preview/Submit. :mrgreen:

1) Call her what you like, even:
Hiai wrote:...shallow, violent, bloodthirsty, vengeful, slutty...gee what queenly characteristics, eh?

Hey you know what? Thats why they call her the barbarian queen. :D By the way, they could emphasize more on the slutty thing in the comics if you ask me, hehe.

5) No no no. The memory for names was not my argument, it was yours. I was just trying to show you that you are wrong. You see some attempt made by Stanley to show some good will. There is no attempt. That the question about the name of the unit arises is no achievement by itself. Questions pop up - just so. The effort you have to make is to care enough to answer them. And thats where Mr. Arkenhammer fails.
There is nothing wrong with rooting for the underdog. I catch myself doing it all the time. But Stanley is by far no underdog. He has all the power he could do all the good things with it - and guess what? He doesnt even do the slightest one of them.
Oh and I dont think that he is trying to fit in. On the contrary. I mean he is currently on his quest to conquer the world to make it his own, right?

4) Parson and Tramennis working together would be tremendous and epic. In one of my earlier posts I put on my tinfoil hat and foresaw that in order to win the war Parson somehow combined the four Arkentools and unwillingly summoned some great evil over Erfworld. So it was up to the former enemies to now work together to prevent armageddon from happening. But the two are so not evenly matched. Here is just one of the thousand reasons: Parson knows about Tramennis' existence...
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Jul 30, 2010 7:49 am

Hiai wrote:1. Still on the "Jillian's middle name is Sue" team. Nothing she has done has ever displayed anything but the most cursory thought or feeling toward those that are supposedly her "loved ones", and all the crazy stuff she gets away with is always because of someone's else's brilliance, not because of her own devices. We saw what happens when she has her own ideas...she gets captured by the enemy (more than once!) gets her forces killed, and ALWAYS fails to defend the people she supposedly cares about. Shallow, violent, bloodthirsty, vengeful, slutty...gee what queenly characteristics, eh?

Okay, so this character we're talking about.

She has obvious flaws. People in the thread gather around to point out the obvious flaws. There are obvious consequences to those flaws; whether she deals with them responsibly or not. And the most she's benefited from author favoritism is that she has the requisite plot armor to keep her in the running.

Also: Her flaws are no more notable than any found in any other Royal. And they are no more responsible for their flaws than this person is. Or Wanda for that matter.

How is that a Sue?

2. I miss Vinnie. Why can't he and Wanda both see the light, abandon their current course, and hook up? lol

Wanda is certifiable. And I don't think she's Vinnie's type.

3. Jack is awesome. What he sees in Jillian is beyond me, but her passing him over for Ansom is just more proof of what a moron she is.

Jack is awesome. No argument.

But I've always wondered if he didn't just have a thing for Wanda and not Jillian. Jillian does have the reputation for being an idiot. And Jack is Jack.

5. I'm used to people taking exception to my view of Stanley. Arguing about his bad memory for names as a sign of what a dipshit he is would probably not be that convincing though, when viewed in the context of his past history. The very attempt to do so, successful or not, is what I point to as evidence that he's at least TRYING to grow into a better leader. I never said he was great, just that I see some potential in him. I am kind of fond of him actually, because he seems like a socially retarded kid who is trying desperately to figure out how to fit in with the cool kids. Always love to root for the underdog, even if they are a bit obnoxious! lol

Honestly, we could say the same of Jillian and self-improvement

But if we're going to play favorites and rate people on how stupid they are, there's no point waiting for the kids on the short bus to catch-up.

I mean there's a veritable cast of honors students to dote on:
Parson, Jack, Maggie, Sizemore, Charlie, Tremannis, Vinnie and so on.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby robak » Fri Jul 30, 2010 8:13 am

ParsonIsOP wrote:But I've always wondered if he didn't just have a thing for Wanda and not Jillian. Jillian does have the reputation for being an idiot. And Jack is Jack.

Damn it, you're right! I always assumed it was Jillian, but it isn't ever stated explicitly I think. Jillian assumes he had a crush on her (because everyone loves Jillin :P), but in the Text update about love, it could just as easily be that Jack loves Wanda. They share a common predicament, yes, but not towards the same person! He Composed, when Jillian called him, but that could just as well just have been the calling of his name by whoever. Unclear why it didn't work earlier, when Parson called him by name, though.
So, new tinfoil hat theory: Jack loves Wanda and not Jillian!
http://www.erfworld.com/book-2-archive/?px=%2F2010-01-19.png wrote:He stood straight, and looked into the deep blue pools of pure Naughtymancy that this woman had for eyes. "I suspect," he said gravely, "love is something greater than magic itself, perhaps something even the Titans are helpless before."
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby ParsonIsOP » Fri Jul 30, 2010 8:34 am

robak wrote:
ParsonIsOP wrote:But I've always wondered if he didn't just have a thing for Wanda and not Jillian. Jillian does have the reputation for being an idiot. And Jack is Jack.

Damn it, you're right! I always assumed it was Jillian, but it isn't ever stated explicitly I think. Jillian assumes he had a crush on her (because everyone loves Jillin :P), but in the Text update about love, it could just as easily be that Jack loves Wanda. They share a common predicament, yes, but not towards the same person! He Composed, when Jillian called him, but that could just as well just have been the calling of his name by whoever. Unclear why it didn't work earlier, when Parson called him by name, though.
So, new tinfoil hat theory: Jack loves Wanda and not Jillian!
http://www.erfworld.com/book-2-archive/?px=%2F2010-01-19.png wrote:He stood straight, and looked into the deep blue pools of pure Naughtymancy that this woman had for eyes. "I suspect," he said gravely, "love is something greater than magic itself, perhaps something even the Titans are helpless before."

Meh, I always thought that Jack was faking his mental illness. Or at the very least, he was taking advantage of the excuse in order to screw over his boss.

There was that Hamlet quote that kind of drew the parallel between them. Hamlet pretended to be crazy to get revenge on his uncle. So maybe Jack pretended to be crazy to get revenge on Stanley.

I think he "turned sane" upon seeing Jillian because he had a sudden change of plans. Something took priority over screwing Stanley.

But as far as Jack's love life goes, I'm not certain. He did imply that he didn't find it a completely an unpleasant prospect to be turned to Jill's side. ("Hazy now, ask again later.")

The possibilities are such:
1) He loves Wanda but is jealous that he's competing with Jill. He feels conflicted though, because Jack is still loyal to Faq and its only remaining heir.
2) He loves Jill, but is unable or unwilling to confront his feelings for her.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Ansan Gotti » Fri Jul 30, 2010 12:14 pm

Don't have time to dig, but I'm pretty confident it has been established in Book One that Jack was crazy about Jillian.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby robak » Fri Jul 30, 2010 12:34 pm

I thought that, too, but then I dug and couldn't find more than Jillian stating that he had a crush on her. She might be mistaken there.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Ansan Gotti » Fri Jul 30, 2010 1:01 pm

robak wrote:I thought that, too, but then I dug and couldn't find more than Jillian stating that he had a crush on her. She might be mistaken there.


I think it was pretty heavily implied in Book One, and this snippet from the text update is pretty conclusive, IMO.

He followed her gaze to the near pass, where Princess Jillian would soon appear. Too well, he knew what the Lady Firebaugh meant. He didn't believe the Croakamancer was aware of their common affliction, but he could never be sure. "There would be defenses," he said quietly.

Based on my understanding of subject-verb and possessive construction, I believe "their common affliction" pretty clearly refers to Jillian. It also builds on all of the past implications.

I'm not saying it's impossible, but I think the magnitude of that type of switcheroo would be pretty head-scratching.

Not to mention all of the dialogue between Parson and Jack that tends to paint Wanda in either a crazy or negative light.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby DevilDan » Fri Jul 30, 2010 4:43 pm

There's no other way I would read the passage quoted by Anson but as a statement that they both have feelings for Jill.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby robak » Fri Jul 30, 2010 10:06 pm

I used to think that, too, but I don't think it anymore.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby spriteless » Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:42 am

I think it would flow better if instead of 12 panels of talking heads, it was some bigger panels with lots of text balloons in them. The first four condenced into one big view of the room with Slately happy and Tramennis nonchalant, Panel 5 and 6 to the side with the Slately jumping out of his desk, 7-10 condenced into Slately angry Tramennis grinning or nonchalant, and 11+12 Tramenis turning away from his father, having made his decision, perhaps mirroring Slately's jumping from his disk.

I can find no fault with the individual art pieces, but the composition does not take advantage of the medium.
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby Wender » Mon Aug 02, 2010 5:19 pm

spriteless wrote:I think it would flow better if instead of 12 panels of talking heads, it was some bigger panels with lots of text balloons in them.


So you'd lose so much of the significance of the expressions, the relative positions, the body language and the camera angles? The medium here is primarily visual, not textual. You want visuals, especially in such an important conversation.

The text update today only underscores what a crucial scene this is. Consider: Trammenis is not doing what GK expects, at all. He's calling Charlie, for one, when GK assumes that they aren't speaking. For another, Parson's plan assumes that Jetstone will offer insulting terms of surrender, but Trammenis wants to talk and he's a skilled negotiator, meaning that he will demand, and get, Parson's full attention. In short
order, he should discover that Ossomer is not the Chief Warlord for GK; that Wanda isn't either. He is likely to find out that Parson is, and to get a good sense of what he's up against. We found out today that Charlie is being cagey about Parson, which means he's treating Parson's existence as valuable information, which means that if Trammenis finds out about him, and finds out that Charlie is being cagey about him, he has significant negotiating leverage over Charlie. He's likely to find this out because Parson has no idea that Charlie is doing this, and will likely show himself readily, just as he did to Ansom. If Trammenis twists Charlie's arm, we might not have seen the last of Jillian in this fight--she should have more than enough move to get back to the scene, and she's already in a delicate position with him.

On top of all that, GK's entire strategy assumes that Slately is in command, and will go through with his stuffy boilerplate tactics in his stuffy boilerplate way. This comic conveys, powerfully, the shift in influence to Trammenis, who's not going to think the way they expect him to think. I doubt Ossomer will be any help; I don't think he ever understood his brother. Trammenis also has the considerable pressure of time. This has to resolve quickly, or Jetstone will implode into its empty treasury. Jillian would be the obvious choice to tip things in his side's favor--except that he doesn't know how close she came to betraying his side. Neither does Parson.

Now, obviously this is speculation. I don't know that any of this will happen. But it demonstrates how much everything is on a knife's edge right now, and every word is profoundly significant. Every side has an ace, a serious information deficit and a critical vulnerability. One slip could spell disaster for any of them. This strip goes a long way toward setting up a perilous situation; how is it filler, or inefficient?
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby spriteless » Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:58 pm

Well, maybe part of the problem is that I don't read body language as well as you, because I don't see the difference in message between grinning with one's arms out gesturing and grinning with one arm close and one arm out gesturing, especially if I can't actually see the motion. There is not as much information, I think there would be more if I could see more of them, or if they were zoomed in closer, or if there was motion conveyed in the text balloons, it is just a limited format. The other twelve panel comics also had lots of change of scenery: page 36, for example, had Stanly's throne room, Jack and Wanda in flight, Jack and Wanda in flight but with mist protecting Wanda (which is visual information I can digest), Jetstone's view of Gobwin Knob's air force (infantry and archery), and a silent beat panel to boot. 37 has the throne room from 12 different angles, which is a lot of effort for less information, and only (to me) a few interactions of body language.
1.Tram collected while Slately is vindicated. (4 panels)
2.Tram collected while Slately is enraged (2 panels)
3.Tram cracks a scowl in the confrontation (1 panel)
4.Tram collected, resolute in his decision while Slately is angry (5 panels)
Some of these can benefit from being spread about multiple panels, some not. Slately stomping across the room is dramatic. Tramennis making himself look small beforehand less so, and kind of odd his response to confrontational stomping was making a passive sweeping gesture. I guess he is trying his hardest not to cower? Is that the vibe you got? Am I wrong? I have a hard time telling these things so please explain. Even if each frame of expression is vital, she still could have combined some of the ones that only show one of them into wider panels.

Also, when you draw the same scene from scratch too many times, you run the risk of Tram's chair shrinking under him as the angle changes. A lot. I missed that the first time. Drawing less takes less time and results in less mistakes.

I am not trying to harp on Xin and make her feel bad. She does great work on all the drawings, just less so the layout. I'm just trying to provide constructive criticism. Comics are not as linear books or movies, one can use space to imply time in a way they don't. Nor are they stand alone paintings or storyboards. 12 rectangular panels a page is easy to storyboard but harder to draw! It does not save time!

Also, I don't mean to be mean to you either Wender, I really have to read people's expressions in weird ways (shoulders mostly) and am used to artists showing expressions in more ahh, neurotypical ways; cartoony faces are a godsend for me. :3
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Re: Book 2 – Page 37

Postby ftl » Mon Aug 02, 2010 8:16 pm

Wender wrote:The text update today only underscores what a crucial scene this is. Consider: Trammenis is not doing what GK expects, at all. He's calling Charlie, for one, when GK assumes that they aren't speaking. For another, Parson's plan assumes that Jetstone will offer insulting terms of surrender, but Trammenis wants to talk and he's a skilled negotiator, meaning that he will demand, and get, Parson's full attention. In short
order, he should discover that Ossomer is not the Chief Warlord for GK; that Wanda isn't either. He is likely to find out that Parson is, and to get a good sense of what he's up against. We found out today that Charlie is being cagey about Parson, which means he's treating Parson's existence as valuable information, which means that if Trammenis finds out about him, and finds out that Charlie is being cagey about him, he has significant negotiating leverage over Charlie. He's likely to find this out because Parson has no idea that Charlie is doing this, and will likely show himself readily, just as he did to Ansom. If Trammenis twists Charlie's arm, we might not have seen the last of Jillian in this fight--she should have more than enough move to get back to the scene, and she's already in a delicate position with him.

On top of all that, GK's entire strategy assumes that Slately is in command, and will go through with his stuffy boilerplate tactics in his stuffy boilerplate way. This comic conveys, powerfully, the shift in influence to Trammenis, who's not going to think the way they expect him to think. I doubt Ossomer will be any help; I don't think he ever understood his brother. Trammenis also has the considerable pressure of time. This has to resolve quickly, or Jetstone will implode into its empty treasury. Jillian would be the obvious choice to tip things in his side's favor--except that he doesn't know how close she came to betraying his side. Neither does Parson.

Now, obviously this is speculation. I don't know that any of this will happen. But it demonstrates how much everything is on a knife's edge right now, and every word is profoundly significant. Every side has an ace, a serious information deficit and a critical vulnerability. One slip could spell disaster for any of them. This strip goes a long way toward setting up a perilous situation; how is it filler, or inefficient?


I like your take. It gives a plausible way for Tramennis's diplomacy to turn out very positive for his side, which would avert some of the fears I voiced earlier. I hope you're right - if Tramennis manages to turn the tables and outmaneuver *Charlie* of all people, and get him to do to Jillian what he did to Hagar... that would be impressive.
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