Would have liked to fiddle with this one a bit more but it's past midnight: time to post it, and time to sleep.
As always, a big thanks to Patreon supporters and conventional donors alike.
Wrong woman to shoot, train boy. Tough luck.
wait, what is that corpse that Vane slides down next to in panel 4? Is it the burnt body of the engine crew guy? O.o But if I’m not wrong he falls off the train after being hit by the fireball, doesn’t he?
The fireman did get blown off the train; see js’ comment below.
Panel 4, there seems to be a guard on the floor, but I just checked previous pages and he doesn’t seem to be there before. Or is it something else?
Other than that, consistently amazing, as always. I am kinda surprised by the amount of lethal force Vane just used against a random mook. Maybe she’s a bit shaken after shooting Hunter, and huh cares even less than usual about collateral damage right now.
It is a guard on the floor (see my exchange with js below); the rear interior of the express car was never previously shown.
Guys, on page 10 of this chapter panel six, Vane hears two shots. Page 11 John Henry emerges from the front of the payroll car and is surprised to see Vane there.
Great action renderings Erin. Love how you illustrate Vane’s slide into behind the wooden crate. Poetry in motion. It’s so easy to see this in my minds eye animated. ;D
You’re right & nice catch; it is the burnt body of the/a guard Hunter dispatched on his way through. I thought this was obvious, given the gunfire that precedes his entrance, but I think too long passes between updates for folks to remember & assemble these kind of details. It was a mere 9 pages ago … but also over two months!
Thanks as always, js — for your comment and for shoring up my faith in my storytelling ability!
What is she getting out of her pouch?
My guess is the belt. The guard still has his.
Also she should be thinking of grabbing his revolver, she is probably going to need all the firepower she can get.
She is pulling the belt off of the guard; the object in question (from her pouch) is still in her right hand in the last panel.
… here I am explaining the comic again. I’ve got to stop finishing these at midnight on Saturday.
Ah, no dear. it’s her left hand that she holds the object from her pouch. But I understand. Your tired. Do you need to take a couple weeks off? Don’t worry about us, we’ll all still be here when you come back. My God, how could we not be. 😀
Erin, you don’t need to explain a thing, people just need to look more closely at the panels. From the angle of the belt, it’s quite clear that it could only be the guard’s. And my, my, is she holding a stick of dynamite? Things are about to go boom.
We still love and appreciate everything you do for us, Erin. Even if we need it to be explained to us.
Though one thing i noticed is the fact that her running and gunning starts with the pistol in her left then after she has gone behind cover the pistol is in her right….
Also do i see some dynamite?
Dchil, I don’t see that. under magnification I see pistol remains in left hand in all renderings, she does holster it on the right though. Vane’s ambidextrous. ;D
Yeah, that does look like dynamite. Uh oh.
She’s got two pistols. In panel 4, she seems to be drawing the other pistol from its holster, that’s why it looks like she changed hands in panel 5 and when re-holstering it in panel 7.
Whoops, just remembered, Hunter melted one of her guns. Hmmm, then I guess she’s really ambidextrous *g*
It strikes me how different these last few pages are when compared with earlier ones in this chapter. The challenge seems to be providing enough details while not slowing down the action. I imagine if you took more cells or pages to show an action sequence, you could make the transitions easier to follow, but the reader would inevitably feel the action taking place over a longer time. I hadn’t thought about how we (I) have a sense of the average time of a single cell – probably set up (at least in part) by the amount of dialogue we see in the cells with words. There is a sense that action cells are faster, but not enormously so. So you can’t take three pages to show 30 seconds of action – it would seem slow. And the more you have to flash past us in the same number of cells, the harder it is to connect the flow and ensure we get all the necessary details. I’ve been admiring your artistic eye, observation, and composition of the larger, slower “shots,” but until now I did not understand some of these unique (and possibly greater challenges) of the action pages. You can put more time and care into both types – but in the end I suspect the physical limitations are harder to overcome when the comic has to be sped up. You’re squeezed.
And like the other aspects of your work, I am stopped and stilled as I contemplate the change from the earlier chapters. This is a far more complex setting, with far more complex logistics, and more challenging details. I tried to picture this moving setting and this current speed of exposition carried out in Chapter 1 style, and I can’t imagine how you would have managed. The artwork is not the only skill you’ve been evolving! (The artwork is my favorite, but that’s a personal bias.)
I did miss some of the details you explained in the comments above… so there is still room for improving these. Some of it is in the drawing – I found the second to last cell difficult to understand. What I mentally wanted was more definition – so this might be a case where the “black on black” was too literal, or where a different crop might have given more context and helped me see what Vane was doing. The same applies to the belt removal, I think – it might have been more clear. I actually thought she was further from the guard than that, and the straight section of the belt was something else (a piece of iron bar?)?
The detail of the other guard, dead inside the car, is another great example of your timing. We didn’t need to see that earlier – it’s more effective shown now, it seems to me, when I found myself recalling (yeah, even in the middle of an action scene) how casually both she and JHH ignored the body in the previous pages.
That’s not a train boy, it’s a policeman. Well, that means troubles!
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