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'Classic Nigel'

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  • Ed Reynolds
    New material for newbies, fascinating to revisit for oldbies... Thanks to Nigel for giving me the go-ahead, here s a bunch of e-mails that are of particular
    Message 1 of 28 , Jul 16, 2001
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      New material for newbies, fascinating to revisit for oldbies...

      Thanks to Nigel for giving me the go-ahead, here's a bunch of e-mails that
      are of particular interest.

      As background to post #1 here (I guess everybody knows how things went
      around 184...?), this was written shortly after issue 157 - Nigel's last
      issue on the comic after Deborah Tate fired him, and he gave the list
      details of his plans. It doesn't say here, but I'm pretty sure Nigel
      specified that he didn't know 157 was the last when he wrote it.

      Anyway, it's fascinating reading...

      Ed



      #1
      A Discussion of the plan post-157.
      ---

      So what I was faced with was having to share the lead strip 50/50 with Lew.
      With the comic going reprint he and I would write a couple of issues
      followed by the other writing a couple and so on. This pretty much put a
      stop to any ideas I might have had about doing another epic. I needed to
      come up with a format that allowed me to develop a back-story a little but
      allowed Lew to do what he wanted without feeling restrained by my
      continuity.

      My last story was actually the first part of my answer to this problem.
      Basically Sonic would be pursued across the planet (which I never got to
      name - Shanazar was only supposed to be the name of the city, not the
      planet) but a group of bounty hunters called Deathtrap. Lew could make up
      his own adventures in zones of his own invention and I could have Death Trap
      catch up with Sonic in the stories I wrote. Sonic would escape Deathtrap at
      the end of my segments an Lew wouldn't have to worry about them. It would
      have worked.

      Robotnik would also now be in a position of great power and he would be
      after Sonic too. But he would have to keep the princess sweet. I can see all
      kinds of humorous scenes where he has to evade her disgusting advances. I
      thought this would be a neat twist - Robotnik with power and resources again
      but with a humiliating need to keep the princess happy.

      Sonic would be on the trail of Nack. He needs that belt thingy to get back
      to Mobius.

      I think I'd have had fun writing Deathtrap. I've forgotten all their names
      now but the leader [Kalus -- Ed] - the stone one. I imagined him as not
      really being a
      villain at all. He simply hunts down criminals for a living. Sonic is
      considered a criminal here. I don't think he was always made of stone. I
      think there is some tragedy in his past that has left him this way. He's
      very deep and private - almost shy.

      The genie one [Prank -- Ed]: This guy would have been the nastiest character
      I had ever
      written for Sonic. He actually likes inflicting pain on people and has no
      mercy at all. He would be capable of terrible things if he wasn't kept in
      check by the stone guy. Maybe there is some secret between the two that
      keeps the stone bloke in charge. I also think Robotnik has struck some
      secret deal with the genie guy. I would want to get a Robotnik influence in
      here somewhere. It makes sense - remember when Robotnik tried to strike a
      deal with the genies in the mountain? Maybe this genie went for whatever his
      deal would have been.

      The final character was a tracker [Totem Billy -- Ed]. This guy is more
      animal that 'human'. he
      relates to the world with his sense of smell. He can talk but when he does
      he makes very little effort to communicate effectively - almost like speech
      is beneath him. He doesn't think much - that's a language thing. He knows a
      deeper reality through the power of his nostrils. Bit of a mystic.

      So that's the way it would have worked. I had an idea in mind where Sonic
      badly injures the stone guy. By this point Sonic realises that he is
      actually a good person and so Sonic goes out of his way to help. I wanted to
      play with ideas about what makes one person a hero and the other a villain.
      In this world Sonic has committed a serious crime by rescuing those kids. To
      society he is the villain - his actions have placed everyone in danger.
      Deathtrap are just doing their job, bringing in a criminal.

      But this was the big plot idea.

      In one story Sonic sees a space ship landing. Out gets a Sentinel and (damn,
      I've forgotten what they're called) [Prosecutor] one of those armoured
      Drakons. But they
      look a little different - more old fashioned. The Drakon places a flag and
      claims the planet in the name of The Drakon Empire. We will assume to begin
      with that the Drakons are just occupying another planet. But finally it
      would turn out that this current planet is actually Mobius and Sonic has, in
      fact, travelled into the distant past. We then bring in the race of
      Echidnas - who still live on the surface and show the start of the
      Echidna/Drakon war. This would all be about Chaos Emeralds, of course. Which
      means I'd probably bring in the Kohenyu who are not yet extinct.

      It might be tricky to work out but it would be nice to bring in Knuckles.
      This is the time he belongs in and he only exist in the normal continuity
      because he has spent many thousands of years in suspended animation.
      Obviously he has had some species of amnesia. Perhaps this Knuckles gives
      Sonic some vital piece of information pass on to his future self.

      This is the sort of stuff I would have like to have done.

      But the truth is I'd never have been allowed to do the Drakon stuff. My
      editor [then, Deborah Tate] would never have let me do something as
      ambitious as this. I only got
      to do that extended Super Sonic piece by disguising it as a series of
      stories.

      Any questions?

      Oh, there are a couple of influences that I want to mention here. The
      Deathtrap idea is inspired by Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid. And the
      going into the past by accident is from Planet Of The Apes.

      Nigel

      ***

      #2
      The Big Announcement
      ---

      Hi Gang

      I have a little news for you.

      I'm back on Sonic The Comic. I start with issue 175 and have had a synopsis
      for a ten issue run approved by the new editor Andy Diggle.

      My ten issue run will incorporated characters and ideas from the new game.

      Any questions?

      Nigel

      ***

      #3
      Somebody (probably me) names a load of rubbishy Sonic stories written by
      Nigel. If it was me, I'm incredibly fickle because a couple I've reread
      recently and enjoyed way more than I ever expected to - "Child's Play" in
      145 for example. Anyway, Nigel posted his rebuttal. Pretty
      self-explanatory...
      ---

      The charge is tripe.

      Let's see if Kitching can wriggle out of this one...

      STC #14
      Hero Of The Year was no classic. It was one of my very early ones and I was
      still in that situation where I was trying to convince Richard Burton that
      we should do longer stories. I've just been checking my records and this
      script was written after the Casino Nights two-parter. I wonder if I had to
      knock this out real quick as some kind of fill-in. Casino Nights appeared
      after this by the way [in issues 18-19 -- Ed]. So Robotnik set up an award
      for Sonic to receive.
      Sonic escapes the obvious trap but it turns out that Robotnik's real plan is
      to track sonic back to his base using a homing device in the award statue.
      Didn't seem too bad when I read it. But the artwork is pretty terrible and
      that doesn't help. Still it's not very good all in all, I'll accept the
      Tripe Award on this one.

      STC #39
      Sonic No More. Truly appalling art. But I don't, as Zac suggested, ever
      write less than my best because I'm being teamed with a poor artist. I
      probably didn't know who'd be drawing this when I wrote it. It's an obvious
      idea - what can I say? Might have been a bit more enjoyable with Elson art
      but basically it's a load of old rubbish. Tripe.

      STC #95
      The Big Fight. It's basically a gag but I still like this. "They're not
      deadly monsters. they're a couple of very naughty boys". Makes me laugh -
      even if the line is kind of nicked from Life Of Brian. I like the monsters
      being stopped by their little old mum. Not tripe.

      STC #119
      Black Christmas. Well I was trying to do a dark twist on the usual Christmas
      saccharin. I also note that my script seems to have been got at. This is
      page three:

      1. Sonic starts to question the elf (who I imagine to be about Tails' size).
      From a house in the background a distraught mother appears. There should be
      at least one other house in the picture.

      Sonic: SPILL IT, PAL, WHAT ARE YOU DOING CREEPING ABO.

      Mother: TOMMY, TOMMY. WHERE ARE YOU?

      Other House: SHE'S GONE! SALLY'S GONE!

      2. Sonic takes a step towards Vile Peter. Give the impression of more
      parents arriving on the scene - if not in this panel then elsewhere on this
      page.

      Sonic: THIS IS YOUR DOING! WHO ARE YOU, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE.?

      3. Vile Peter throws some magical sparkly powder on the ground in front of
      Sonic. The explosion knocks Sonic off his feet.

      SFX: ZOOOOSH!

      Vile Peter: I AM THE THING THAT HIDES IN THE DARKEST CORNERS OF YOUR
      NIGHTMARE. I AM VILE PETER!

      Sonic: AAAH!

      4. Sonic zooms angrily straight at Vile Peter.

      Sonic: SO YOU'RE SOME KIND OF SPOOK, ARE YOU?

      Sonic: GOT NEWS FOR YOU BUD, I DON'T BELIEVE IN.

      5. Sonic crashes to the ground. Vile Peter has completely vanished. In the
      background Tails is running up.

      SFX: THUDD!

      Sonic: GHOSTS.

      Tails: SONIC!

      I haven't checked the whole thing but this seems pretty heavy editing to me.

      I don't think the plot is unstructured as you implied - seems pretty linear
      to me. And I like the way Sonic assumes the big fat guy in red is Robotnik
      in disguise. Still, it's still a Christmas story and I'll accept it as
      semi-tripe.

      STC #121-122
      Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself.
      Thought the story was amusing too. I had plans for them to figure out that
      Robotnik was using them and team up with Sonic. I'm actually quite fond of
      this two-parter. I fear, however, that a lot of people don't agree with me.
      Anyway, not tripe.

      STC #134
      Back In The Special Zone. I liked this quite a lot too. Two more of my (and
      Richard's) characters that I thought were pretty good. A pretty funny story,
      I thought. The elderly couple, by the way, were supposed to be Madge and
      whoever - luckily Richard pointed out I was getting my zones mixed up so he
      fixed it. Again, not tripe.

      STC #142
      Revenge. All a bit dull really. I quite liked the way that Sonic talked
      himself out of the feeling that he had been beaten. Nice little touch of
      character, I thought. Still I'll accept the tripe.

      STC #145
      Child's Play. Yeah well it's another obligatory Christmas story, isn't it?
      This one is a bit twee. Okay, tripe.

      STC #150
      Robotnik No More? This was okay, I thought. I note that you have a problem
      with another of my (and Richard's) humorous characters in Kupacius. Anyway,
      I quite liked this. I hope saying that I liked my own stuff doesn't make me
      seem big-headed? I hope not. Not tripe, anyway.

      STC #151
      The Mystic Mountain. The scorpion is to show how dangerous the desert is.
      The guides are happy to fight this thing but they turn back at the gates and
      are scared stiff. Why shouldn't Kintobor have whisked up a potion to prevent
      him turning back into Robotnik? I actually thought this one was quite good.
      Tripe indeed...

      Okay, how'd I do?

      Nigel

      ***

      #4
      Nigel's discussion of his post-185 plans...
      ---

      Well I promised to give everyone some idea of what I had in mind for STC.

      I figured that after that ten issue run it would be time for a shorter
      tighter little plot and I had in mind bringing the Floating Island back.
      This would tie into that little scene with Porker at some controls just
      before the Island went down. [in issue 178 -- Ed]

      In this scene what Porker was actually doing was diverting some of the
      Floating Island's power into maintaining a force field. In this way the
      Island would have been protected from damage as is crashed into the sea. The
      force field is still functioning and keeping the water off the Island.

      But why has Porker kept quite about this? I figure that his plan was a
      desperate one and he wasn't at all sure it would work - he didn't want to
      get Knuckles' hopes up only to dash them again.

      In the meantime Porker has been trying to establish a link with the Floating
      Island and my story may well have begun with him running out of his lab in a
      excited state just having made contact and established that the Island is
      still in one piece with the force field still functioning.

      The problem was going to be how to raise the Island. The idea being that it
      was in water far too deep to get to. The solution to this was going to be
      finding some way of remotely activating the Island robots and have them
      piloting the thing to the surface in some way.

      Richard mentioned some idea about Sonic encountering some undersea race at
      some point and we were just starting to talk about how undersea races don't
      really work and why and what we could so about that. We thought that the way
      it was done in the latest Star Wars film was quite successful but I still
      think that we would have needed to think of a good angle on this - something
      with a bit of a surprise in it. Maybe this undersea race have some
      connection to the Drakon Empire? I dunno.

      Seems to me that it would have been interesting to show Knuckles in a pretty
      depressed state at the start of the story. He's be sat there with his
      Emeralds but without any use for them.



      On a quite different thread it seems to me that Big would have caught that
      Prosecutor [Chaos, in issue 184 - Ed] before the crocs got to him and it
      would have been fun to see
      what relationship he would have had with a talking fish. This talking fish
      would be quite able to get down to the sunken Floating Island, of course.
      But his biggest need would be to have a new encounter suit built and make
      contact with his people. Maybe he cons Big into helping him.


      Then I had some idea that Doctor Zachary had been on the Island all this
      time and we'd have to come up with some stuff about how he was coping.

      Speaking of Zacahary I had some vague idea that he knew about a bunch of
      other Echidnas that were still held in suspended animation deep within the
      Island somewhere. I thought that maybe these were all criminals and Zachary
      planned to revive them and take over the Island. Maybe it would be better if
      only some of them were baddies though. Maybe one of them is Tikal - this
      would be a handier way of getting her into the series than all that time
      travel stuff. Tikal would be a useful character in that she would know more
      about Echidna history than Knuckles. She still wouldn't know about the
      eventual fate of the Echidnas - what she would know would depend on just
      when she was frozen. It might be many years after Knuckles was done and for
      quite different reasons. She could be an old woman even. Probably best if
      she isn't though.



      I also figured that Death Trap haven't given up their hunt - they pride
      themselves on not giving up. At some point they would catch up with Sonic -
      we'd have to figure out a way for them to have gotten out of the cruel fate
      that Lew wrote for them though.


      Also I had in mind writing a scene to show the shift in Sonic's personality.
      Sonic is still totally reckless where his own safety is concerned but he now
      has a real problem letting any of his gang risk themselves. So we would have
      a scene, perhaps, where Sonic keeps the whole truth of a dangerous situation
      away from his team putting himself into a ridiculously perilous position.

      After a suitable period of time I'm sure I would have gone back to finishing
      off the story of the Echidna/Drakon war. I think I would have had Sonic go
      back into the past but to a time well after the period where the first story
      took place. Pachamacomaamcc would have been long dead and Tikal nowhere to
      be seen. But by this point she would have been introduced into the cast and
      she would be travelling into the past along with Sonic. In this story one of
      the key scenes would be the time that the Floating Island rose up into the
      sky for the first time. This whole plot is pretty complicated and I'm not
      sure quite what I would do. We'd need to see Knuckles put into suspended
      animation I guess but I'm not sure I ever quite worked out the eventual fate
      of the Echidnas. Obviously they prevented the Drakons getting away with the
      Chaos energy - at least in its stable form (being contained in the Chaos
      Emeralds). But it's obvious they lost the war. I had in mind at one point
      that the Echidnas were basically enslaved by the Drakons. In this way the
      race still exists but it is spread across the galaxy. I guess we could draw
      parallels with African slaves in America. Perhaps, like these slaves, they
      told there own folk tales of the distant past - Brer Knuckles and mean old
      Brer Chaos. Brer Knuckles And The Wonderful Tar Emerald. Hmmm, I wonder if
      anyone knows what I'm talking about...


      Then we have the question of the fate of Super Sonic. It seems obvious to me
      that Ebony was up to something - she didn't seem to be in the least bit
      concerned to see the demise of her friend. She's let Sonic think her spell
      sent him back into Sonic so things had become as they were in the past. But
      myself I don't think that this is what actually happened. She obviously has
      some plan to get her friend back. All we can be sure of is what we saw.
      Maybe, on the final page, what Ebony did was absorb Super Sonic into
      herself. maybe that was her plan all along - get Super Sonic to the Chaos
      Energy, recharge him and then hide him by absorbing him. The plan almost
      went wrong when Super Sonic turned evil.


      Then we have Robotnik and Grimer. Grimer has really quit this time. The
      thing about Grimer that nobody seemed to pick up on was the fact that he was
      pathologically loyal. He wasn't 'Robotnik's cowardly sidekick a slimy
      weakling who only cares about one thing - saving his own skin'. Grimer was
      totally loyal to Robotnik and would probably have laid down his life to save
      his master. Now that he has been force into seeing that is master is insane
      Grimer will be in a terrible state - a state of bereavement.

      Robotnik will probably be in a catatonic state in an asylum somewhere. I
      think his ruling over Mobius days are over but maybe the Drakon Empire might
      still have a use for him.

      I think that will do for now.

      Any questions?

      Nigel
    • Doctor Zachary
      ... From: Ed Reynolds To: Sent: Monday, July 16, 2001 6:18 PM Subject: Classic Nigel IN-JOKES R US
      Message 2 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Ed Reynolds <ed.reynolds@...>
        To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Monday, July 16, 2001 6:18 PM
        Subject: 'Classic Nigel'

        IN-JOKES R US

        > Thanks to Nigel for giving me the go-ahead, here's a bunch of e-mails that
        > are of particular interest.

        Although curiously you've excluded the Knuckles background information.

        I know that it's a little before your time but I'm certain that you got
        someone to pass that old thing (dated back to 1997 I think) along to you...

        I'm glad to see the Coollist messages I had previously lost, but when it
        concerns stuff that went onto eGroups, wouldn't it be simpler just to link
        to the messages from the archive?

        > Somebody (probably me) names a load of rubbishy Sonic stories written by
        > Nigel. If it was me, I'm incredibly fickle because a couple I've reread
        > recently and enjoyed way more than I ever expected to - "Child's Play" in
        > 145 for example. Anyway, Nigel posted his rebuttal. Pretty
        > self-explanatory...

        Yes it was definitely you. :)

        I think though it was because Nigel dared you to...

        And "Child's Play" IS rubbish...

        > Sonic No More. Truly appalling art. But I don't, as Zac suggested, ever
        > write less than my best because I'm being teamed with a poor artist. I
        > probably didn't know who'd be drawing this when I wrote it. It's an
        obvious
        > idea - what can I say? Might have been a bit more enjoyable with Elson art
        > but basically it's a load of old rubbish. Tripe.

        That was relative to a VERY old comment (waaaaay back just before the second
        wave of reprints began to kick in) that Nigel made that I don't think I ever
        fully comprehended.

        > STC #95
        > The Big Fight. It's basically a gag but I still like this. "They're not
        > deadly monsters. they're a couple of very naughty boys". Makes me laugh -
        > even if the line is kind of nicked from Life Of Brian. I like the monsters
        > being stopped by their little old mum. Not tripe.

        Being reprinted next week. So there's Ed's cunning advertising plan.

        > Black Christmas. Well I was trying to do a dark twist on the usual
        Christmas
        > saccharin. I also note that my script seems to have been got at.

        I don't see many scripts that weren't...

        (Andy Diggle interestingly made big changes to some of Nigel's scripts, but
        we tend to ignore that because they were usually for the better, and we were
        so relieved to be rid of the Tate institution that we daren't complain...)

        But actually this script DOES seem very heavily edited. I don't remember
        Vile Peter vanishing.

        > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself.
        > Thought the story was amusing too. I had plans for them to figure out that
        > Robotnik was using them and team up with Sonic. I'm actually quite fond of
        > this two-parter. I fear, however, that a lot of people don't agree with
        me.

        Yeah Ed, how can you accuse that story of being tripe?

        That little gem is a particular favourite of mine. Padnik's too I think.

        > Back In The Special Zone. I liked this quite a lot too. Two more of my
        (and
        > Richard's) characters that I thought were pretty good. A pretty funny
        story,
        > I thought. The elderly couple, by the way, were supposed to be Madge and
        > whoever - luckily Richard pointed out I was getting my zones mixed up so
        he
        > fixed it. Again, not tripe.

        And now we also have the interesting new angle on Blockhead Bill and Society
        Max which alters our viewpoints a little...

        > Okay, how'd I do?

        Looks like you won the Ed.

        > Pachamacomaamcc

        Ah, the memories...

        /)_.
      • Ed Reynolds
        ... Do you even know how to laugh maniacally? ... Due to its absence from my files. ... you... This reply, signifying that Zac didn t read my mail earlier on
        Message 3 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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          > IN-JOKES R US

          Do you even know how to laugh maniacally?

          > Although curiously you've excluded the Knuckles background information.

          Due to its absence from my files.

          > I know that it's a little before your time but I'm certain that you got
          > someone to pass that old thing (dated back to 1997 I think) along to
          you...

          This reply, signifying that Zac didn't read my mail earlier on the topic,
          heartens me greatly. 'Cause y'know, I never read his replies until it's too
          late. ^_^

          > I'm glad to see the Coollist messages I had previously lost, but when it
          > concerns stuff that went onto eGroups, wouldn't it be simpler just to link
          > to the messages from the archive?

          Not for me. Think how long it takes to trawl through Egroups. This as
          opposed to running an Outlook find.

          > Yes it was definitely you. :)
          >
          > I think though it was because Nigel dared you to...

          Heh. Wonder what people would say now...

          > And "Child's Play" IS rubbish...

          No it's not. Okay, I know I said so before, but I was lying. I read it just
          the other day and I was amazed. It was just SO SWEET! And it's brilliant
          when all the kids think they've killed Sonic, and reflect on how STUPID it
          would be for a bunch of kids larking about to kill him when Robotnik
          couldn't. Splendid.

          > (Andy Diggle interestingly made big changes to some of Nigel's scripts,
          but
          > we tend to ignore that because they were usually for the better, and we
          were
          > so relieved to be rid of the Tate institution that we daren't complain...)

          I remember Nigel noting several things but nothing all that major. But
          considering that Nigel seemed to be doing things a lot more daring than he
          did under Deborah... you know, the death, the echidna history, the violence,
          the mad-Robotnik stuff, the lack of puns...

          > But actually this script DOES seem very heavily edited. I don't remember
          > Vile Peter vanishing.

          He was put in Santa's sack as I recall.

          > > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself.
          > > Thought the story was amusing too. I had plans for them to figure out
          that
          > > Robotnik was using them and team up with Sonic. I'm actually quite fond
          of
          > > this two-parter. I fear, however, that a lot of people don't agree with
          > me.
          >
          > Yeah Ed, how can you accuse that story of being tripe?

          I liked where it took Robotnik, and I loved the art. But Hobson and Choy
          just seemed very overfamiliar and stupid characters with a fun but not
          spectacular design. And what actually happened? In part 1, Nigel imported
          Lew's villains, DRAT, for no apparent reason other than to give Sonic
          something to do while exposition was given to Robotnik and H&C.

          Ed
        • LFletch87@AOL.com
          Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself. ... Y know who they remind me of? Those two cats from Looney Tunes. George and
          Message 4 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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            << > > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself.
            > > Thought the story was amusing too.>>

            Y'know who they remind me of? Those two cats from Looney Tunes. George
            and someone. Benny, I think, I dunno. Y'know, the short New York type and
            the tall fat one ("I will love him and pet him and call him George, just like
            you, George!").

            I reckon so because Choy, just like George, never wants to get too much
            into the fights (As you may have seen when he was with in those cartoons with
            Sylvester and Hippety Hopper) and Hobson was a little over-enthusiastic as
            well as being the "Strong, but incredibly stupid" character.

            Buzz Bomber.
          • Nigel Kitching
            ... myself. ... and ... like ... Nononononono... It was George And Junior by Tex Avery for MGM. They were a big bear and a little bear. Hang on... the example
            Message 5 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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              Somebody:

              > << > > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters
              myself.
              > > > Thought the story was amusing too.>>

              Buzzy:

              > Y'know who they remind me of? Those two cats from Looney Tunes. George
              > and someone. Benny, I think, I dunno. Y'know, the short New York type
              and
              > the tall fat one ("I will love him and pet him and call him George, just
              like
              > you, George!").

              Nononononono...

              It was George And Junior by Tex Avery for MGM. They were a big bear and a
              little bear.

              Hang on... the example you mention is from another Avery cartoon called
              Lonesome Lenny about a big stupid (but strong dog) and Screwy Squirrel -
              similar kind of character to Junior though. In any case Avery based the big
              dumb character on a character from Steinbeck's book Of Mice And Men - worth
              a read if you ever fancy it.

              > I reckon so because Choy, just like George, never wants to get too much
              > into the fights (As you may have seen when he was with in those cartoons
              with
              > Sylvester and Hippety Hopper)

              You're getting well mixed up now... I'm sure Warners ripped-off Avery at
              some point and used a Lenny type though...

              and Hobson was a little over-enthusiastic as
              > well as being the "Strong, but incredibly stupid" character.

              But anyway...

              All I was going to say was that the only influence that Richard and I ever
              used for Hobson & Choy was Asterix and Obelix. And that was just for their
              look and not their personality. Choy was like a little yappy dog - very
              brave and full of himself when he felt safe but would run for cover at the
              first sign of danger.

              You see, it's all so clear now...

              Nigel
            • Doctor Zachary
              ... From: Ed Reynolds To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 5:21 PM Subject: Re: Classic Nigel ... too
              Message 6 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                ----- Original Message -----
                From: Ed Reynolds <ed.reynolds@...>
                To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 5:21 PM
                Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                > This reply, signifying that Zac didn't read my mail earlier on the topic,
                > heartens me greatly. 'Cause y'know, I never read his replies until it's
                too
                > late. ^_^

                I thought you said that Samanfur mailed it to you some time in 1999...

                > Not for me. Think how long it takes to trawl through Egroups. This as
                > opposed to running an Outlook find.

                Not as difficult as you think - just look at the date, then do a random
                number search or something, and go for trial and error...

                :)

                > No it's not. Okay, I know I said so before, but I was lying. I read it
                just
                > the other day and I was amazed. It was just SO SWEET! And it's brilliant
                > when all the kids think they've killed Sonic, and reflect on how STUPID it
                > would be for a bunch of kids larking about to kill him when Robotnik
                > couldn't. Splendid.

                Bleh. It was tripe. Cheesy story coupled with cheesy artwork.

                > I remember Nigel noting several things but nothing all that major. But
                > considering that Nigel seemed to be doing things a lot more daring than he
                > did under Deborah... you know, the death, the echidna history, the
                violence,
                > the mad-Robotnik stuff, the lack of puns...

                I did say changes - not censorship...

                > He was put in Santa's sack as I recall.

                Muhhhhh. (MOHH is copyrighted by Dave)

                > I liked where it took Robotnik, and I loved the art. But Hobson and Choy
                > just seemed very overfamiliar and stupid characters with a fun but not
                > spectacular design.

                Well Hobson was just like Big really, though of course Hobson predates Big.

                Choy - and his relationship with Hobson - was something to marvel at though.
                But each character seemed awfully familiar...

                As far as appearance is concerned they remind me of Asterix and Obelix.

                Mostly of interest is that they were a fun comical addition to the Drakon
                Empire - unless you count the fish thing of course...

                And what actually happened? In part 1, Nigel imported
                > Lew's villains, DRAT, for no apparent reason other than to give Sonic
                > something to do while exposition was given to Robotnik and H&C.

                I liked that. It showed that Nigel was taking notice of what the other
                writers were doing and also point out how much badniks have changed over the
                years. A character from #103 had a role which tied up a couple of loose ends
                about his story. And Nigel also recognised that Tails was becoming a hero in
                his own right - something he tried again in #143(?), and failed miserably
                (at least as far as I'm concerned) because it looked really stupid.

                Sonic kinda landed in the middle of an unwritten Tails story there actually.
                Which was not a bad idea.

                /)_.
              • Nigel Kitching
                ... violence, ... I don t think Andy altered anything near as much as Deb did. Don t know how Zac got this impression - but he always says stuff like this as
                Message 7 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                  Ed:

                  > I remember Nigel noting several things but nothing all that major. But
                  > considering that Nigel seemed to be doing things a lot more daring than he
                  > did under Deborah... you know, the death, the echidna history, the
                  violence,
                  > the mad-Robotnik stuff, the lack of puns...

                  I don't think Andy altered anything near as much as Deb did. Don't know how
                  Zac got this impression - but he always says stuff like this as though it's
                  a fact. I sometimes think he knows more about what went on at Fleetway than
                  I do.

                  Nah - Andy altered very little of what I wrote as far as I remember.

                  I was reading through the latest issue and I groaned at a couple of balloons
                  in the Knuckles strip. I'm sure Deb must have altered a few things here.

                  Nigel
                • Doctor Zachary
                  ... From: Nigel Kitching To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 8:25 PM Subject: Re: Classic
                  Message 8 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: Nigel Kitching <nigel@...>
                    To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                    Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 8:25 PM
                    Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                    > All I was going to say was that the only influence that Richard and I ever
                    > used for Hobson & Choy was Asterix and Obelix.

                    I swear I posted that last message before I read yours... honest...

                    /)_. (to make this interesting, Choy was at one point called Choisir - and
                    now that I think about it probably to tie in with the Gaul theme - so it was
                    Hobson's Choice or something. This is of course when they were being
                    designed visually, which is before Nigel got chance to start messing them
                    up...)
                  • Doctor Zachary
                    ... From: Nigel Kitching To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 8:31 PM Subject: Re: Classic
                    Message 9 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: Nigel Kitching <nigel@...>
                      To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                      Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 8:31 PM
                      Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                      > I don't think Andy altered anything near as much as Deb did. Don't know
                      how
                      > Zac got this impression - but he always says stuff like this as though
                      it's
                      > a fact. I sometimes think he knows more about what went on at Fleetway
                      than
                      > I do.

                      I mean big changes such as getting rid of a panel. Though I suppose Deb
                      could probably have done more. Such as, of course, printing an entire page
                      of "Brotherhood of Metallix" without any dialogue, and then of course adding
                      the horrific "ta, muchly!"

                      It's fact because it happened in #176...

                      > Nah - Andy altered very little of what I wrote as far as I remember.

                      In the two scripts that I've read (plus an excerpt or two of others) there
                      were plenty of changes, though none really interfering with the main plot...

                      Tell you what Nigel, if I state something as fact again when it's really
                      part theory then just give me a bash on the head again will you?

                      And please hit me with a cucumber in order to keep this horrific revival of
                      in-jokes going...

                      /)_.
                    • Ed Reynolds
                      ... And also that I don t think (although I ll check) that I have that post any more. ... There you go. You learn something new to forget about every day. ...
                      Message 10 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                        > I thought you said that Samanfur mailed it to you some time in 1999...

                        And also that I don't think (although I'll check) that I have that post any
                        more.

                        > Not as difficult as you think - just look at the date, then do a random
                        > number search or something, and go for trial and error...
                        >
                        > :)

                        There you go. You learn something new to forget about every day.

                        > Mostly of interest is that they were a fun comical addition to the Drakon
                        > Empire - unless you count the fish thing of course...

                        Unless you count the bit where they're boring and tired.

                        > I liked that. It showed that Nigel was taking notice of what the other
                        > writers were doing and also point out how much badniks have changed over
                        the
                        > years. A character from #103 had a role which tied up a couple of loose
                        ends
                        > about his story. And Nigel also recognised that Tails was becoming a hero
                        in
                        > his own right - something he tried again in #143(?), and failed miserably
                        > (at least as far as I'm concerned) because it looked really stupid.

                        Beating up easily beat-upable badniks? Yeah, that's grand praise. "Goblin
                        Overlords" was a splendid little story.

                        > Sonic kinda landed in the middle of an unwritten Tails story there
                        actually.
                        > Which was not a bad idea.

                        I must admit these light Mobian adventure things had a sweet sort of charm
                        to them. Of course, the fact that a very similar tack was taken only the
                        previous multi-parter with 'Best of Enemies' using a bit of Sonic fudge to
                        get in the Drakon/Robotnik stuff. It's even less effective when you notice
                        that Lew's stories consisted almost exclusively of comedy shorts by this
                        stage.

                        Ed
                      • Nigel Kitching
                        ... It s okay I believe you. ... was ... Where do you get this stuff from? Choy was originally called Choi - I suggesting changing it because my way it was
                        Message 11 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                          Zac:

                          > I swear I posted that last message before I read yours... honest...

                          It's okay I believe you.

                          > /)_. (to make this interesting, Choy was at one point called Choisir - and
                          > now that I think about it probably to tie in with the Gaul theme - so it
                          was
                          > Hobson's Choice or something. This is of course when they were being
                          > designed visually, which is before Nigel got chance to start messing them
                          > up...)

                          Where do you get this stuff from?

                          Choy was originally called Choi - I suggesting changing it because my way it
                          was more phonetic. I thought some people might not get the pronunciation
                          right therefore losing the Hobson's Choice connection.

                          There was no 'Gaul theme'. What do the Gauls have to do with Hobson's Choice
                          anyway?

                          I did talk to Richard about the look of these characters particularly Choy,
                          I think. I don't think I 'messed them up' though.

                          It's not fair... if only I could be as rude as Zac and get away with it...


                          Nigel
                        • Nigel Kitching
                          ... adding ... I don t think that one panel being removed was a big deal - I forget exactly what it was now. The sort of changes that bugged me was when a
                          Message 12 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                            Zac:

                            > I mean big changes such as getting rid of a panel. Though I suppose Deb
                            > could probably have done more. Such as, of course, printing an entire page
                            > of "Brotherhood of Metallix" without any dialogue, and then of course
                            adding
                            > the horrific "ta, muchly!"

                            I don't think that one panel being removed was a big deal - I forget exactly
                            what it was now. The sort of changes that bugged me was when a character
                            would suddenly speak some lines that just didn't sound right to me. By the
                            time the editor got hold of the story it was already drawn so the plot was
                            hard to change. It's just that sometimes an editor will (to my mind) screw
                            up my dialogue - not understand that I had a reason for writing a speech in
                            a certain way - that occasionally putting in an apparently superfluous word
                            was a way of breaking up the staccato rhythm you can so often get in comic
                            book writing.

                            Oh I don't know...

                            Sometimes the dialogue changes helped - but not often...

                            > > Nah - Andy altered very little of what I wrote as far as I remember.
                            >
                            > In the two scripts that I've read (plus an excerpt or two of others) there
                            > were plenty of changes, though none really interfering with the main
                            plot...

                            I'm sure you're right - I'd have to go and check this. All I can tell you is
                            that Andy's changes didn;t stick out like a sore thumb the way his
                            predecessor's did.

                            > Tell you what Nigel, if I state something as fact again when it's really
                            > part theory then just give me a bash on the head again will you?

                            I don't think I'd be qualified to do that. You fans remember this stuff far
                            better than I do.

                            > And please hit me with a cucumber in order to keep this horrific revival
                            of
                            > in-jokes going...

                            What 'in-jokes'? What are you talking about?...

                            Check out this Knuckles script - did Deb do much to it or is it my
                            imagination?

                            Nigel
                          • Ed Reynolds
                            There s a disappointing silence from the STC community upon production of these posts. Shy? Disinterested? Asleep? On holiday? Taking a vow of silence? Dead?
                            Message 13 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                              There's a disappointing silence from the STC community upon production of
                              these posts. Shy? Disinterested? Asleep? On holiday? Taking a vow of
                              silence? Dead? Secman? (Is he even on the list still?)

                              > So that's the way it would have worked. I had an idea in mind where Sonic
                              > badly injures the stone guy. By this point Sonic realises that he is
                              > actually a good person and so Sonic goes out of his way to help. I wanted
                              to
                              > play with ideas about what makes one person a hero and the other a
                              villain.
                              > In this world Sonic has committed a serious crime by rescuing those kids.
                              To
                              > society he is the villain - his actions have placed everyone in danger.
                              > Deathtrap are just doing their job, bringing in a criminal.

                              A silly point but... this would have been such a gorgeous story. I just
                              loved "Heart of Evil" and I loved the way Sonic was forced to realised that
                              even though he is heroic he may not always be a hero to people.

                              > STC #121-122
                              > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters myself.
                              > Thought the story was amusing too. I had plans for them to figure out that
                              > Robotnik was using them and team up with Sonic. I'm actually quite fond of
                              > this two-parter. I fear, however, that a lot of people don't agree with
                              me.
                              > Anyway, not tripe.

                              Nigel, how did Hobson and Choy fit into your thinking (or did they?) after
                              175, where Hobson and Choy had been out of the picture for years? Are they
                              Financial Advisors to the Marxio Brothers or something? :)

                              > STC #150
                              > Robotnik No More? This was okay, I thought. I note that you have a problem
                              > with another of my (and Richard's) humorous characters in Kupacius.
                              Anyway,
                              > I quite liked this. I hope saying that I liked my own stuff doesn't make
                              me
                              > seem big-headed? I hope not. Not tripe, anyway.

                              Was there ever any pressure to have 150 as a large-size story along the
                              lines of 100 and 130? It seemed the obvious story to do it and the Robotnik
                              return plot seemed to be gearing up towards it and then... well, it just
                              sort of fizzled out. Was it ever considered?

                              > STC #151
                              > The Mystic Mountain. The scorpion is to show how dangerous the desert is.
                              > The guides are happy to fight this thing but they turn back at the gates
                              and
                              > are scared stiff. Why shouldn't Kintobor have whisked up a potion to
                              prevent
                              > him turning back into Robotnik? I actually thought this one was quite
                              good.
                              > Tripe indeed...

                              Read in sequence it's lovely. But initially, I just thought: "what is this
                              about? End it already". Then I read "Mountain of Doom" and was all:
                              "actually, this is quite good". And then I read "Heart of Evil". Which is
                              mind-numbing.

                              Since Kintobor's origins never got explored, did you have any other plans?
                              (I seem to recall you once suggested a Wizard of Oz type scenario...)

                              > Richard mentioned some idea about Sonic encountering some undersea race at
                              > some point and we were just starting to talk about how undersea races
                              don't
                              > really work and why and what we could so about that.

                              Why don't they work?

                              And one last question... whatever happened to that Knuckles Metallix army
                              Robotnik was building in issue 116? Did you/he/everybody just forget about
                              them, or did you ever have ideas as to how they'd be used?

                              Ed
                            • KT
                              once upon a time in !sonicthecomic land, Nigel Kitching wrote... ... It is a good book. Shame my enjoyment of it was partly
                              Message 14 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                                once upon a time in !sonicthecomic land, Nigel Kitching <nigel@nkitching
                                .freeserve.co.uk> wrote...
                                >Somebody:
                                >
                                >> << > > Hobson And Choy. I really liked the Hobson and Choy characters
                                >myself.
                                >> > > Thought the story was amusing too.>>
                                >
                                >Buzzy:
                                >
                                >> Y'know who they remind me of? Those two cats from Looney Tunes. George
                                >> and someone. Benny, I think, I dunno. Y'know, the short New York type
                                >and
                                >> the tall fat one ("I will love him and pet him and call him George, just
                                >like
                                >> you, George!").
                                >
                                >Nononononono...
                                >
                                >It was George And Junior by Tex Avery for MGM. They were a big bear and a
                                >little bear.
                                >
                                >Hang on... the example you mention is from another Avery cartoon called
                                >Lonesome Lenny about a big stupid (but strong dog) and Screwy Squirrel -
                                >similar kind of character to Junior though. In any case Avery based the big
                                >dumb character on a character from Steinbeck's book Of Mice And Men - worth
                                >a read if you ever fancy it.

                                It is a good book. Shame my enjoyment of it was partly killed by
                                having to study it as my GCSE set text...
                                >
                                >> I reckon so because Choy, just like George, never wants to get too much
                                >> into the fights (As you may have seen when he was with in those cartoons
                                >with
                                >> Sylvester and Hippety Hopper)
                                >
                                >You're getting well mixed up now... I'm sure Warners ripped-off Avery at
                                >some point and used a Lenny type though...

                                It's a common theme...
                                >
                                > and Hobson was a little over-enthusiastic as
                                >> well as being the "Strong, but incredibly stupid" character.
                                >
                                >But anyway...
                                >
                                >All I was going to say was that the only influence that Richard and I ever
                                >used for Hobson & Choy was Asterix and Obelix. And that was just for their
                                >look and not their personality. Choy was like a little yappy dog - very
                                >brave and full of himself when he felt safe but would run for cover at the
                                >first sign of danger.
                                >
                                >You see, it's all so clear now...

                                I'm sure the names are based off/lifted from something, but I can't
                                remember what... (Other than it making my think of Calvin and Hobbes,
                                but I doubt that's it.)

                                Say, this is completely irrelevant to anything, but have you ever read
                                'The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant', Nigel?
                                --
                                KT Coope
                                Only a week and a hlaf till deadline... eeeeeee
                              • Ed Reynolds
                                ... exactly ... I think you said it was after Johnny s death where you had written a panel in hinting that Chaos was alive. ... is ... To you, although the
                                Message 15 of 28 , Jul 17, 2001
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                                  > I don't think that one panel being removed was a big deal - I forget
                                  exactly
                                  > what it was now.

                                  I think you said it was after Johnny's death where you had written a panel
                                  in hinting that Chaos was alive.

                                  > I'm sure you're right - I'd have to go and check this. All I can tell you
                                  is
                                  > that Andy's changes didn;t stick out like a sore thumb the way his
                                  > predecessor's did.

                                  To you, although the most glaringly obvious editorial insertation in the
                                  comic ever was the "Blue Bomber" line in 178. I mean, in the nine issues
                                  since he joined the comic, I think Andy got it into a cover line and a
                                  poster at least. I'm pretty sure he got it into Speedlines as well but maybe
                                  not at this stage. Of course part of this was being on the list and knowing
                                  that there was a change of editor. But the change was so drastic that I
                                  guess I'd have noticed anyway. Er, I'm rambling.

                                  > Check out this Knuckles script - did Deb do much to it or is it my
                                  > imagination?

                                  I haven't got the story in front of me, but much of it is familiar.

                                  I'm sure the next issue line got changed, and the "cooler than a cool thing
                                  line" I'm pretty certain got replaced. Not sure about the dialogue on page 2
                                  where Knuckles attacks the trooper. I think the hippies were toned down to
                                  respectable members of society who may involve themselves in tree protests
                                  but certainly don't condone any of that sex and drugs malarkey... erm, well,
                                  I've a hunch that the odd 'man!' was cut and that sort of stuff revised.
                                  Hmm... it wouldn't stand out to be as something that got heavily edited
                                  though. But I'll have to find my copy of issue 94 to be sure.

                                  Thanks for posting the script, Nigel. Even if it was only to prove a point.

                                  Ed
                                • Doctor Zachary
                                  ... From: Nigel Kitching To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 10:33 PM Subject: Re: Classic
                                  Message 16 of 28 , Jul 18, 2001
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                                    ----- Original Message -----
                                    From: Nigel Kitching <nigel@...>
                                    To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                                    Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 10:33 PM
                                    Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                                    > Where do you get this stuff from?

                                    Richard himself.

                                    Or rather, his character design sketches, which are (still) up on STEM.

                                    > Choy was originally called Choi - I suggesting changing it because my way
                                    it
                                    > was more phonetic. I thought some people might not get the pronunciation
                                    > right therefore losing the Hobson's Choice connection.

                                    Makes sense. Though I didn't get the connection... because this is basically
                                    the first time I've ever heard of the phrase...

                                    > There was no 'Gaul theme'. What do the Gauls have to do with Hobson's
                                    Choice
                                    > anyway?

                                    The "Gaul theme" as I put it is to do with the "Choisir" name actually - and
                                    the fact that the character sketch said that he should speak with a French
                                    accent. :)

                                    Thank god Nigel messed him up so he didn't speak with a French accent...

                                    > I did talk to Richard about the look of these characters particularly
                                    Choy,
                                    > I think. I don't think I 'messed them up' though.
                                    >
                                    > It's not fair... if only I could be as rude as Zac and get away with it...

                                    Sorry Nigel, I was only kidding around. :)

                                    I liked Hobson and Choy.

                                    /)_.
                                  • Doctor Zachary
                                    ... From: Nigel Kitching To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 11:10 PM Subject: Re: Classic
                                    Message 17 of 28 , Jul 18, 2001
                                    • 0 Attachment
                                      ----- Original Message -----
                                      From: Nigel Kitching <nigel@...>
                                      To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                                      Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 11:10 PM
                                      Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                                      > I don't think that one panel being removed was a big deal - I forget
                                      exactly
                                      > what it was now.

                                      It was the last panel at the end of #176. Chaos reforming. But Andy
                                      obviously cut it out in order to stengthen the death scene.

                                      The sort of changes that bugged me was when a character
                                      > would suddenly speak some lines that just didn't sound right to me. By the
                                      > time the editor got hold of the story it was already drawn so the plot was
                                      > hard to change. It's just that sometimes an editor will (to my mind) screw
                                      > up my dialogue - not understand that I had a reason for writing a speech
                                      in
                                      > a certain way - that occasionally putting in an apparently superfluous
                                      word
                                      > was a way of breaking up the staccato rhythm you can so often get in comic
                                      > book writing.

                                      And let us never forget the classic time when Deb added that comment about
                                      how amulets ward off evil.

                                      > I'm sure you're right - I'd have to go and check this. All I can tell you
                                      is
                                      > that Andy's changes didn;t stick out like a sore thumb the way his
                                      > predecessor's did.

                                      Also, the drastic ones (in the scripts I've read) were usually for the
                                      better...

                                      > I don't think I'd be qualified to do that. You fans remember this stuff
                                      far
                                      > better than I do.

                                      'We fans' didn't work for Egmont. :)

                                      > What 'in-jokes'? What are you talking about?...

                                      It started with Ed's compilation message with your dreadful abuse of
                                      Pachacamac's name. Then came back the memories... 'Nuff said...

                                      > Check out this Knuckles script - did Deb do much to it or is it my
                                      > imagination?

                                      "Ooooooh" is changed to "Ah"

                                      "Ebony" added, weakening the impact of the intro...

                                      Knuckles' dialogue page 2 panel 2 has been messed around with, but that's
                                      the only change on that page

                                      "I can't let him" changed to "he can't", and lots of exclamation marks have
                                      been removed from Ebony's dialogue at the top of page three

                                      "You're not impressed" changed to "so, you're unimpressed"...

                                      MAJOR changes to the dialogue in panel 5.

                                      More changes to page 4 panel 1

                                      Deb misses the point of Knuckles' phrasing thinking that Nigel's no good
                                      with grammar in panel 2

                                      Someone adds "hey" to panel 3

                                      HUGE dialogue alterations, page five panel 1

                                      "We HAVE to!" sadly removed

                                      The dialogue in panel 3 is changed, but probably for the better.

                                      The tree's speech in panel 4 though is wrecked.

                                      /)_.
                                    • Doctor Zachary
                                      ... From: Nigel Kitching To: Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 11:10 PM Subject: Re: Classic
                                      Message 18 of 28 , Jul 18, 2001
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                                        ----- Original Message -----
                                        From: Nigel Kitching <nigel@...>
                                        To: <sonicthecomic@yahoogroups.com>
                                        Sent: Tuesday, July 17, 2001 11:10 PM
                                        Subject: Re: 'Classic Nigel'


                                        > Check out this Knuckles script - did Deb do much to it or is it my
                                        > imagination?

                                        One more thing - Deb's changed the "next issue" line, removing the "I"
                                        making it less interesting...

                                        Unless of course the letterer didn't notice it, which is of course possible.

                                        /)_.
                                      • Mike Corker
                                        ... I m going to reply soon, honest! Just a little busy right now! Mike
                                        Message 19 of 28 , Jul 18, 2001
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                                          > There's a disappointing silence from the STC community upon
                                          > production of
                                          > these posts. Shy? Disinterested? Asleep? On holiday? Taking a vow of
                                          > silence? Dead? Secman? (Is he even on the list still?)

                                          I'm going to reply soon, honest! Just a little busy right now!

                                          Mike
                                        • Nigel Kitching
                                          KT ... I haven t. I ve got to admit I ve never heard of this book - the title does sound vaguely familiar but I just can t place it. Nigel
                                          Message 20 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                            KT

                                            > Say, this is completely irrelevant to anything, but have you ever read
                                            > 'The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant', Nigel?

                                            I haven't. I've got to admit I've never heard of this book - the title does
                                            sound vaguely familiar but I just can't place it.

                                            Nigel
                                          • Nigel Kitching
                                            ... I d planned for them to join Sonic s gang. I wanted to give him some more colourful team-mates - I wanted to have a lot more tension and conflict within
                                            Message 21 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                              Ed:

                                              > Nigel, how did Hobson and Choy fit into your thinking (or did they?) after
                                              > 175, where Hobson and Choy had been out of the picture for years? Are they
                                              > Financial Advisors to the Marxio Brothers or something? :)

                                              I'd planned for them to join Sonic's gang. I wanted to give him some more
                                              colourful team-mates - I wanted to have a lot more tension and conflict
                                              within the group.

                                              > Was there ever any pressure to have 150 as a large-size story along the
                                              > lines of 100 and 130? It seemed the obvious story to do it and the
                                              Robotnik
                                              > return plot seemed to be gearing up towards it and then... well, it just
                                              > sort of fizzled out. Was it ever considered?

                                              There was never any plans to make issue 150 an event as far as I can
                                              remember. Ad far as pressure goes it was me who pushed for a special issue
                                              for 100. The editor didn't really care one way or the other and the idea of
                                              a single story spread across the various series confused her somewhat. I
                                              remember having to type up a document trying to explain exactly how it would
                                              work.

                                              > Since Kintobor's origins never got explored, did you have any other plans?
                                              > (I seem to recall you once suggested a Wizard of Oz type scenario...)

                                              I had in mind that Kintonbor was a human explorer of some kind who found
                                              Mobius and stayed. I'd have needed more than that to make the idea
                                              interesting, of course.

                                              > > Richard mentioned some idea about Sonic encountering some undersea race
                                              at
                                              > > some point and we were just starting to talk about how undersea races
                                              > don't
                                              > > really work and why and what we could so about that.
                                              >
                                              > Why don't they work?

                                              Just my (and Richard's) feeling from the movies we'd seen featuring
                                              underwater races. I guess the main problem is that talking underwater isn't
                                              easy - being underwater just kind of makes the characters seem distant. The
                                              underwater races only really work dramatically once they get out of the
                                              water - like in the last Star Wars with their city.

                                              > And one last question... whatever happened to that Knuckles Metallix army
                                              > Robotnik was building in issue 116? Did you/he/everybody just forget about
                                              > them, or did you ever have ideas as to how they'd be used?

                                              I don't have 116 to hand. I'm afraid you'll have to remind me about what the
                                              story was in that issue.

                                              Nigel
                                            • Nigel Kitching
                                              ... I talked to Richard yesterday and your right, Choy was originally called Choisir. I d forgotten all about that - based on the French for choice
                                              Message 22 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                Me:

                                                > > Where do you get this stuff from?

                                                Zac:

                                                > Richard himself.
                                                >
                                                > Or rather, his character design sketches, which are (still) up on STEM.

                                                I talked to Richard yesterday and your right, Choy was originally called
                                                Choisir. I'd forgotten all about that - based on the French for 'choice'
                                                apparently.

                                                > > There was no 'Gaul theme'. What do the Gauls have to do with Hobson's
                                                > Choice
                                                > > anyway?
                                                >
                                                > The "Gaul theme" as I put it is to do with the "Choisir" name actually -
                                                and
                                                > the fact that the character sketch said that he should speak with a French
                                                > accent. :)

                                                Quite logical but, in this case, not correct. We didn't have a Gaul idea for
                                                these two.

                                                > > I did talk to Richard about the look of these characters particularly
                                                > Choy,
                                                > > I think. I don't think I 'messed them up' though.

                                                And I'm wrong here. It was Hobson I got Richard to look at again. I even
                                                sent him a couple of sketches to show him the change I had in mind.

                                                > Sorry Nigel, I was only kidding around. :)

                                                It's okay. As far as I'm concerned you can go on being rude as long as I can
                                                go on pointing it out.

                                                Nigel
                                              • Nigel Kitching
                                                ... This stuck out like a sore thumb to me. Ebony wouldn t use such a formal word as unimpressed. ... This is the worst. I remember thinking very hard about
                                                Message 23 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                  Zac:

                                                  > "You're not impressed" changed to "so, you're unimpressed"...

                                                  This stuck out like a sore thumb to me. Ebony wouldn't use such a formal
                                                  word as unimpressed.

                                                  > The tree's speech in panel 4 though is wrecked.

                                                  This is the worst. I remember thinking very hard about the way I wanted the
                                                  trees to speak. Deb changed it on a whim.

                                                  It came to a point where I just stopped reading my printed stories because
                                                  the alterations just bothered me so much. This may sound very precious of me
                                                  but I did put a lot of effort into writing that stuff and I just couldn't
                                                  understand why Deb was changing it around. With Andy I don't recall feeling
                                                  this way - I seem to think his changes were pertinent.

                                                  Nigel
                                                • Nigel Kitching
                                                  ... Well the Lerner and Lowe song I was referring to was called I Talk To The Trees after all. Nigel
                                                  Message 24 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                    Zac:

                                                    > One more thing - Deb's changed the "next issue" line, removing the "I"
                                                    > making it less interesting...

                                                    Well the Lerner and Lowe song I was referring to was called 'I Talk To The
                                                    Trees' after all.

                                                    Nigel
                                                  • Rich Morgan
                                                    ... production of ... Myself: No... ignorant! My STC collection ends at issue 120, and I have a significant lack of knowledge on the recent STC themes. I have
                                                    Message 25 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                      Ed:

                                                      > There's a disappointing silence from the STC community upon
                                                      production of
                                                      > these posts. Shy? Disinterested? Asleep? On holiday? Taking a vow of
                                                      > silence? Dead? Secman? (Is he even on the list still?)

                                                      Myself:

                                                      No... ignorant! My STC collection ends at issue 120, and I have a
                                                      significant lack of knowledge on the recent STC themes.

                                                      I have little interest in SA2/SA anyway, not having a Dreamcast... so
                                                      discusions involving those are out, too.

                                                      And i'm gonna be away for a few days - yes, you all get a break from
                                                      the opinions of the small, orange, furry gun-toting one. Aren't you
                                                      lucky, lucky peoples? :)

                                                      (I still have about 20 posts to look at, so my inane shoutings may go
                                                      on for just a teensy weensy bit longer ;) )

                                                      Rich
                                                      (Zonefox)
                                                    • Ed Reynolds
                                                      ... Sounds interesting. Were Hobson and Choy the only members you planned to add? And would this just end up a simple expansion or would you keep the standard
                                                      Message 26 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                        > I'd planned for them to join Sonic's gang. I wanted to give him some more
                                                        > colourful team-mates - I wanted to have a lot more tension and conflict
                                                        > within the group.

                                                        Sounds interesting. Were Hobson and Choy the only members you planned to
                                                        add? And would this just end up a simple expansion or would you keep the
                                                        standard number of around fiveish members constant? What about Knuckles; he
                                                        ended up a virtual member of the gang by the end, would he be in there?
                                                        Would Porker be around?

                                                        And when you say conflict, what sort of conflict? The sort of comic banter
                                                        like where Sonic snubs Tails and Choy, Choy snubs Hobson, Tails and Sonic,
                                                        and Amy takes the piss out of everybody... or a more serious tension and
                                                        division of opinion?

                                                        Was this setting the Drakon Empire up as more long-term threat for the
                                                        gang - since they most directly jeopardise Hobson and Choy? Or are they just
                                                        doing it because they like being superheroes? Choy in particular never
                                                        seemed the type to go out of his way if there wasn't anything in it for him.
                                                        Is he doing it for money?

                                                        > There was never any plans to make issue 150 an event as far as I can
                                                        > remember. Ad far as pressure goes it was me who pushed for a special issue
                                                        > for 100. The editor didn't really care one way or the other and the idea
                                                        of
                                                        > a single story spread across the various series confused her somewhat. I
                                                        > remember having to type up a document trying to explain exactly how it
                                                        would
                                                        > work.

                                                        Seems odd. Did you initiate 130 as well?

                                                        > I had in mind that Kintonbor was a human explorer of some kind who found
                                                        > Mobius and stayed. I'd have needed more than that to make the idea
                                                        > interesting, of course.

                                                        Cool.

                                                        > > And one last question... whatever happened to that Knuckles Metallix
                                                        army
                                                        > > Robotnik was building in issue 116? Did you/he/everybody just forget
                                                        about
                                                        > > them, or did you ever have ideas as to how they'd be used?
                                                        >
                                                        > I don't have 116 to hand. I'm afraid you'll have to remind me about what
                                                        the
                                                        > story was in that issue.

                                                        "Best of Enemies" part 1. It was the one where you introduced the concept of
                                                        the House of Magic and the House of... er, I always get this wrong, either
                                                        Learning or Knowledge... and showed Ko-Door pressing Robotnik to tell him
                                                        where the Emeralds were. Before Ko-Door arrives to harass Robotnik, he gives
                                                        the reader a glimpse of loads of Metallixes.

                                                        Oh, and one more question - ages ago, you invited us to ask you sometime
                                                        about how you named your characters. I think the phrase was the "hoops you
                                                        jumped through" to get decent-sounding names or something like that. So out
                                                        of curiosity, can you remember if there was anything interesting behind
                                                        these names... some seem slightly more obvious, but may of course be
                                                        references.

                                                        Ko-Door (Leader of the Drakon House of War)
                                                        Sister Haagra (Leader of the Drakon House of Magic in 116)
                                                        The Kohenyu species

                                                        Oh and I suppose Blockhead Bill and Society Max. This sounds like very
                                                        familiar, but I don't know what it's familiar to...

                                                        Ed
                                                      • Ed Reynolds
                                                        ... Actually, I will soon vanish without a trace as well. And return just when you thought it was safe to post on the list. :) Ed
                                                        Message 27 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                          > And i'm gonna be away for a few days - yes, you all get a break from
                                                          > the opinions of the small, orange, furry gun-toting one. Aren't you
                                                          > lucky, lucky peoples? :)

                                                          Actually, I will soon vanish without a trace as well. And return just when
                                                          you thought it was safe to post on the list. >:)

                                                          Ed
                                                        • KT
                                                          once upon a time in !sonicthecomic land, Nigel Kitching wrote... ... By Stephen Donaldson (The guy who wrote the Mordant s
                                                          Message 28 of 28 , Jul 19, 2001
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                                                            once upon a time in !sonicthecomic land, Nigel Kitching <nigel@nkitching
                                                            .freeserve.co.uk> wrote...
                                                            >KT
                                                            >
                                                            >> Say, this is completely irrelevant to anything, but have you ever read
                                                            >> 'The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant', Nigel?
                                                            >
                                                            >I haven't. I've got to admit I've never heard of this book - the title does
                                                            >sound vaguely familiar but I just can't place it.

                                                            By Stephen Donaldson (The guy who wrote the 'Mordant's need' Series
                                                            and 'The Gap' Series)

                                                            It's a good series, if long, though I forget why I asked about it
                                                            now. Probably because half the people I've asked about it hate it, and
                                                            half really like it. I was wondering which side you'd fall under. ^_^

                                                            (There's 6 book, split into 2 trilogies. The first is not exactly warm
                                                            and fluffy but the second is very dark. Very good though. Some
                                                            interesting concepts)


                                                            Oh, and has anyone here read Snow Crash? I'm thinking of getting a copy
                                                            but may have to order it and want to know if it's worth it.
                                                            --
                                                            KT Coope
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