Dennis Goes Down, a story

See more Hutch Owen samples (the better drawn stuff!) here

Hutch Owen's 3rd book, Let's Get Furious is slated to come out from Top Shelf in March 2012. I thought I'd show some samples here now and there, including how some of these things relate to the How To Say Everything concepts of idea/image, character, storyclock, poetry and linefield.

This long story is the longest in Let's Get Furious, and is the most concrete storyarc, narrative arc, the mythic cycle, that thing that relates to something I call the Storyclock. This story was the first to center on the antagonist of the Hutch Owen world, CEO Dennis Worner. Dennis is a bad dude, he’d sell his dying mother to his children if he could make her somehow look hip enough. This story focused on him confronting some of the limits of his perception.

What follows is a very small subsection showcasing none of the subplots involved. Click any image to read more in depth. The entire story can be read here and in Let's Get Furious by Top Shelf in March 2012. More Hutch Samples can be seen from the Hutch main page, here

Above, here’s that surprise, that 1:00 incident that upsets the character. Dennis sees that his usual theatrics aren’t appreciated by the masses of poor people and consumers. His routine has been interrupted.

He begins his trek into “the other world”, above. To put the world back in order, he decides he has to get the POOR back on track. A typically deluded and wrong-headed action for this character. He hasn’t crossed over into the “other world” yet, but it’s an important moment, a moment of acceptance. He’s accepted his fate.

Above, the world is new to him. As he crosses the threshold into the new world, he's sees things he doesn't understand (but Dennis being Dennis will never admit to not understanding)

Next, above, a typical scene in the other world (“act 2” - we’re sort of 4 or 5:00 here) where the main character confronts constant new oppositions (in this story’s case, most of these are psychological.) In this instance, Dennis’s lackey, Fristoe confronts him with ideas so frustrating that he banishes him. Note too, that this moment serves as the inciting 1:00 incident for the lackey’s character’s subplot. This is his expulsion into the new world, his first upsetting event. Fristoe undergoes a complete, though less elaborate narrative arc in this piece as well.

Here, above, Dennis tries to contemplate this new world, and tries to use the language of that world to wrestle his way out of it. But he doesn't get it quite yet...

Above, Dennis’s low point in this whole experience is confronting, face-to-face a series of real poor people. None of whom do anything to change his opinion of them. In fact, his impressions of them worsen, hastening his return to his own sheltered world. (This also coincided with Hurricane Katrina in real time when I was creating it, as you can gather.)

Above, this is the CRISIS, the 6 o clock, the furthest moment from our “ordinary world”, but working in a strip format I chose not to push him too far into dangerous dramatic territory. I want to keep the character mostly in his familiar state of mind.

In this comic strip format, even his worst moments are pretty manageable. Also, I poked fun at the idea of his knowing where he was in his own storyline. Dennis being a smart ad man and marketer, would know these terms.

Above, now reunited with Fristoe, he tells of his adventure and begs to go home. He’s on the cusp of leaving the new world, 7 or 8 o clock. He’s got access to his old employees and his language here is understood.

Ah home, life is once again in balance. I chose to reuse an image of the front door I used in one of the earliest pages of the character on the way out into the “other world.”

Here, Dennis has returned wiser, smarter, even more ready with the brilliant lines. He’s on top of his game (this final line was one my favorites that I had in my store at the ready.) His reward for having gone through the underworld is a rejuvinated sense of purpose.


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