Friday, September 30, 2005

On Regeneration

That's right, like the Good Doctor himself, the Fractal Hall Journal will be undergoing significant changes in the New Year. As a prelude to this, from 31st October we'll be publishing an arc of interelated stories. Everyone is invited to celebrate the Season of Feasts...

This is probably how the new Fractal Hall site will work- various seasons of stories, not necessarily in a tight update schedule. What will update regularly, from early November, is Xenocrates M. We've also got another strip on the boil, though that will probably wait until the New Year's revamp.

Xeno is, in some ways, the original reason for the Fractal Hall existing. I knew I wanted to create a comic, and also have a story repository for my cohort Swaine and I. The strip was originally conceived as a throwback to the old Flash Gordon type strips. It would have been about a cosmic adventurer, Adam Strange style, with shiny silver 1950s space ships and ray guns. The hook, if you would, was to be What if the depravities of the Cthulhu Mythos' Great Old Ones took root in a more innocent comic-strip galaxy? Actually, that's a bloody good pitch, so no one nick it.

As I thought about it a bit more, I decided that Great Old Dark Aliens Coming Back had already been done in Babylon 5, so Xeno's current incarnation is unlikely to follow that kind of theme. I think the danger and darkness of the strip is likely to come from a more human origin.

The next iteration would have been called Tales or Adventures in a Dark Galaxy. In a way, I suppose that could still be a subtitle for the series. But in a way that would be misleading too. There's no doubt that the universe of Xenocrates M will turn out to be far from safe, or stable. There is great evil to found almost everywhere. But the Darkness will be more likely to share the quality of colour you see outside your window when the sky is a deep violet with the clouds rolling in, the street lamps glowing a vivid yellow, and you're not sure if the twilight is due to the sun rising, or setting to leave you in the cold of night.


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