maybe the king did something to them, but who knows…You strike me as the type of writer that has ‘things’ he wants to happen, and then they do, but you don’t always think it through?
Nooot sure if that’s what I mean but…
Well, Samantha and Jericho come to mind. Jericho’s impact was pretty minimal all things considered, thanks to his poison powers being either you can beat them or you can’t, with no in-between, which leaves him…Well, basically rendered a non-combatant, and thus unable to really make a proper impact. And Samantha seemed like she did nothing of any obvious use or value until waaaay down the line when Law showed up.
Both of their powersets strike me as having the same base issue on a certain level-they’re tanks without a means to draw aggro. And since combat kind of tends to be 1v1 whenever possible, there’s no real way for them to actually win a fight- either their opponent can’t fight them and runs off…Or they can and the duo gets whomped…
I dunno, I’m digressing from my actual point but simultaneously, I’m not really sure what that point is.
Unfortunately, it’s not out of character either. They are children of Sloth (Arthur) and represent both Famine (Samantha) and Pestilence (Jericho). They’re thematically designed to be incredibly slow killers.
Otherwise, I can’t clarify how the writing process goes, as I can only talk for myself and I don’t really have much of a say in how the story develops or is presented. I can say that plans often changed as things kept going and it’s very apparent that resources are getting stretched really thinnly without the new locations being made. Most of the writing is being done in the moment as a result.
My process can pretty much be summed up by TVtrope’s page on “writing by the seat of your pants” I have an overall plan. I have places I want the story to go and things I want done there, but what happens along the way is more a matter of dropping characters into place and seeing what each one does when playing off of each other. It’s like a table top RP where I play all the characters and the DM. I may have plans for the party, but they do their own thing while going through the dungeon and those plans may not work for what actually ends up happening. I really can’t picture writing any other way… it would have so many out of character nonsense moments… if you put the plot before the characters then then you are stuck making excuses for why the actions they take, even if foolish or against their nature, were their best option… or worse only option. You see that kinda thing all the time… it’s stupid.
But coming back the the example of Jericho and Samantha, I used them to kinda sow some plotline seeds, since they clearly weren’t going to cut it as normal antagonists. Samantha didn’t even use her powers until late in the story. Her purpose from the start was as a non-combatant. She was hard to get rid of and would just show up, spout some nihilism and then leave. She thematically completes the four horsemen set, but she isn’t really meant to do much but express resentment for her situation. This sets up for Arthur’s backstory as using her as an experiment and serves as another example of what Alaster is standing up against. He treats her kindly, despite her being annoyed by it and seeing it as sarcastic.
On the flip side is Jericho who is also used to set up some thematic things in a similar fashion. He’s better equipped to be a proper antagonist, but despite his arrogance, even at his best he’s only lethal when outside circumstances are stacked in his favor. Such as being in an area with poor ventilation. Yeah, Jericho’s actual function was also to set up Alaster taking a stand for his own generation, and in this case even further against Jericho’s wishes than Samantha’s. Jericho, despite claiming to be a badass, has the most life shattering powerset in the comic. He wears a hazmatsuit with a clunky gas mask and huge tanks on his back… all of which limit his ability to fight because his powers wreck everything around him just by existing. He might claim that he loves what he became, but by his second appearance it’s clear that he paid a huge price and got garbage in return. It’s only when Kolt steals his body that he gains any control over his abilities.
It’s a small moment, but Alaster and Jericho’s interaction is pretty telling when you know the full depths of how their philosophies clash. They hate each other’s guts, and it at first seems to be all about how Alaster is a nut job and Jericho is more serious. Jericho is proud of being undead, despite his version being the most curse-like of all the Wight’s we’ve seen (and in fact is used as torture for the zombies being farmed for acid blood). Alaster hates what Maxwell and Arthur have done to the family. And there is the matter of Samantha… It’s very very small but Jericho has been nothing but a jerk to the rest of the family in the few scenes where it has come up. Alaster think’s he’s a super shitty brother to the poor girl.
I’m sure I’ll be able to do more with both of them moving forward, though. I have plans… that will happen differently once I write them down, I’m sure.
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