Werewolves versus vampires
Submitted by Arcanom on April 5, 2007 - 18:30
So when you're attempting to create a fantasy-oriented comic or story you have to make some decisions right off the bat. When you're focusing on some of the most classic types of fictional characters in all of literature you've got to make those deicions very carefully. Create the wrong set of rules and you alienate part of your audience right off the bat. Make inconsistent rules and heaven help you if you do develop a fanbase.
When we started the Paranormals the writer and I had several long philosophical discussions about the nature of werewolves and vampires and exactly how we'd treat them in our universe. Indeed some of the discussions actually made it into a few early bits of dialogue, which sadly didn't make the final cut. For example, here's Daniel trying to make sense of what he's discovered in issue 2, "Moondance":
"This is..I can't believe..I mean I've heard stories about Skin Walkers, if that's what you are, is that what you are? Or are you an actual Werewolf? Is it true that silver can hurt you? Does it only work if it's a bullet, or would you keel over if, say you put on a silver ring? That would really kind of suck, I suppose 'cause lots of things have silver in them...Oh man, does this mean you can't use silverware either?"
Valid questions, all, and ones we've had to nail down over the course of the first series. I don't want to give everything away now (hey, I would like you to read the actual comics), but we do come back to these questions and try to answer them for werewolves and vampires.
Things become both more and less tricky when it comes to some of the other "paranormal classes" we introduce in the series. For instance Daniel. Sure we've got some generic concepts of what a shaman should be able to do, at least within our series. He may seem a bit limited at the start, but his abilities may well turn out to be the most powerful of the bunch. His reach will extend quite a bit farther than the current Dr. Doolittle routine.
Surprisingly enough even though we weren't entirely sure what we wanted to do with the Avatars in our series, Peri's powers fell into place rather easily. We did have some debate, and again I turn to a snipped of dialogue from Preston that never made it into the final version of issue 3, "Little Egypt":
"Technically speaking she's not a mummy, she's the disembodied spirit of the Princess Neptra inhabiting Persephone's body. So how much trouble could she be? What's she going to do, walk down to the nearest synagogue and demand that they build her a pyramid?"
Of course our Avatar needed to be capable of a little bit more than simply being bossy and inappropriately bloodthirsty. So Neptra developed both her control of the dead (and yes you will get to see her in action) and her telekinetic abilities. Though it's always a little tricky to get Neptra to do what you want her to do when you want her to do it. She is a princess, after all.
The absolute trickiest of the lot to wrap our brains around was poor Preston. We wanted to make sure that he wasn't just your average wand waving wizard-type, he's techno-geek sorcerer through and through. The upside is that his powers are pretty much limited to the scope of his imagination...the downside is if his tech toys fail so does his spellcasting. And if he's ever seperated from his toys...well, you get to see what happens then this series in an issue called "Offline".