Volume 2 Page 73
Posted September 14, 2016 at 12:01 am

Panels 1 through 4: If you’ll pardon the mildly technical discussion, this sequence shows an underrated variation in the so-called “180°rule.” While said rule mainly concerns itself in comics use with consistently keeping characters on one side or the other of a scene’s panels, note also the importance of maintaining which direction the characters face. I could’ve theoretically showed Spooky facing to the right in panels 2 and 4 as she addresses the off-panel pair, but that wouldn’t have aided the narrative clarity of the panels, IMHO.

Panels 5 and 6: In retrospect, I probably should’ve reversed the order of Spooky’s mystical hand gestures, here, as the flicking motion of her opened fingers in panel 5 would’ve worked much better with the results of Treacherous Girl and Goatee Boy getting flung off into the distance. Note also the odd visual divergence of Spooky’s conspicuously seamed and heavy-looking glove in panel 5, which is notably at odds with the light, close-fitting appearance I normally use for her costume’s gloves. Not sure why 2006-Era Me went this route, other than the fact that a “heavy-seamed” glove is a bit easier to depict with high-contrast rendering. In any event, pretty much every other version of Spooky’s pentagram-decorated “opera gloves” in Empowered features a less clumsy-seeming version of ’em.

Along those lines, note that I’ve long planned—but never quite gotten around to showing—a whimsical scene in which we find out that Emp is one of the very few SuperHomeys capable of picking up a coin off the pavement, thanks to the gossamer thinness of her supersuit’s “glove” membranes. Well, more likely that the scene would’ve featured the need to pick up a critical “data wafer” or the like from the floor of a supervillain’s lair, but you get the point, I think. I love the idea of Havoc, Rivet, Syndablokk, Mechanismo, Phallik, etc. scrabbling helplessly at the data wafer—or magic coin, or whatever—with their thick, clumsy fingers, with only the nimble-fingered Emp capable of saving the day.

Hmmm… Come to think of it, just occurred to me that only a superhero with a “thin-gloved” costume like Emp’s would be capable of freeing herself from most forms of bondage. By contrast, the usual heavier and clumsier gloves of most “superheroic cosplayers” would be unhelpful indeed for trying to pry away at knots in ropes or the edges of wrapped duct tape. Well, maybe that helps to explain how Emp is able to escape most of her “damsel in distress” episodes, since I rarely deign to show how that happens.

-Adam Warren

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