Somnivore

Discuss Scott McCloud's current online comic project. Be sure to check out <a href="http://www.scottmccloud.com/comics/mi/mi.html">the latest improv</a>!

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Somnivore

Post by Rip Tanion »

Ok, from the title, black background, the surreal feel of the first panel, and the dark blue background for the blank panels-to-come, I guess it's safe to assume this is going to have something to with sleep, and possibly dreams.

My question is: Why start the strip with a picture of Gene Simmons, in make-up, but without his toupe?
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Post by Scott McCloud »

Heh-heh...

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Somnivore

Post by Bede »

I'm getting echoes of "When Luna Smiles" ... tho' maybe I'm a little premature ...

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Re: Somnivore

Post by Cyborg Caveman »

Anonymous wrote:I'm getting echoes of "When Luna Smiles" ... tho' maybe I'm a little premature ...
I thought the same thing. The first panel of Somnivore reminds me especially of the panel in When Luna Smiles where the cat-man's face is rising up out of the primordial waters of the subconscious (okay the last bit is my particular interpretation - he's rising up out of the water at any rate).
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Post by Scott McCloud »

Yeah, the moment I started it, I thought: Okay, not too much like "Luna"...

Working at it. :)

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Post by Greg Stephens »

I was reminded of "Luna" at first as well, but with the arrival of panel two, I'm getting an impression of what it might be about and where it might be going and, frankly, it's creeping me out.

And I voted for this title.
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Brrrrr. Yeah...

Post by Cyborg Caveman »

Greg Stephens wrote:I was reminded of "Luna" at first as well, but with the arrival of panel two, I'm getting an impression of what it might be about and where it might be going and, frankly, it's creeping me out.

And I voted for this title.
Same here. Well I didn't vote for it (no cash!), but it is creepy. It had a very "Luna" vibe at first, but with the advent of the second panel it's a whole new ball game. Kinda gives me the freezing willies. Don't get me wrong - -I was never scared of clowns or dolls as a kid, and I own a huge mask collection (I buy a few new ones every halloween), but there's something about this dark harlequin guy peering in what appears to be a child's bedroom window that is definitely unsettling. Shades of John Wayne Gacy.

I'll be interested, in a morbid sort of way, to where this goes and if it will be any less sinister than just two panels have made it out to be.
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Post by Rip Tanion »

Greg Stephens wrote:with the arrival of panel two, I'm getting an impression of what it might be about and where it might be going and, frankly, it's creeping me out.
It's creepin' me out, too.

When I was a little pisher, I wouldn't go to sleep at night, unless the blinds and curtains of bedroom window were closed because I was afraid of some creepy monster or alien looking in at me. Kind of silly, considering I lived on the 29th floor.

But now, Scott, you are making me re-visit by childhood nightmares.

BTW, getting back to the Gene Simmons reference, on KISS' Rock and Roll Over album, there's a song written and sung by Gene called, See You In Your Dreams. Hmmm. Could the Somnivore, and the God of Thunder be one and the same, after all?
Last edited by Rip Tanion on Mon Aug 04, 2003 5:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Christopher Lundgren »

Well maybe this fellow is more benevolent--say the equivalent of the Japanese mythological Baku, a sorta anteater that devours people's nightmares.

Or maybe it is just a creepy clown-man up to no good. Maybe he eats people while they're asleep. Bum bum buuuuuuum!!!

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Kind of reminds me of the psycho from the Cell's dream self

Post by Cyborg Caveman »

Christopher Lundgren wrote:Well maybe this fellow is more benevolent--say the equivalent of the Japanese mythological Baku, a sorta anteater that devours people's nightmares.
Precisely what I was thinking when I wondered if it would turn out to be less sinister than it appears. Something about that face though, sinister, placid, and angelic all at the same time. The lack of words has a part in it too. Where the silence of "Luna" seemed almost peaceful, a hush layed over the playful imagery, the silence of Somnivore (thus far anyway) has a decidedly more ominous cast to it.
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Post by losttoy »

The title suggests the character is a creaturre that eats dreams or sleep. Perhaps this Gene Simmons without his hair piece is kind of likke a dreeam catcher which will save the young girl from bad dreams. Or perhaps the Somnivore is like a vampire and must feel while the girl is asleep. Will he enter her dreams or just steal them? Regardless, the tension is mounting.

You know, this comic strip would look great in flash. Perhaps each panel apearing one at a time, three in a row. Maybe something interactive where you touch the panel to make the Somnivore apear or such ... like to show something hidden in the panel. Of course that would take an awful amount of work just for a Morning Improv.
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Post by Christopher Lundgren »

Now I'm getting kind of a Sandman vibe. Not unlike A Game of You.

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Things don't look too good for Dummy-Head...

Post by Cyborg Caveman »

When the panels with Mr. Tummy were put up the other day I was getting a distinct "horror movie" vibe wherein the snippy Mr. Tummy would be quickly devoured by the Somnivore after running off and leaving Dummy-Head alone. It appears in the space of a few panels Scott has completely turned the tables and now innocent but seemingly spineless Dummy Head is in danger of getting more then his nuts cracked.

When Dummy-Head first popped up I had him figured for more of a guardian type figure in the little girl's dreamscape but his hypersensitivity and weepy nature quickly did anyway with any ideas along those lines.

So if Dummy-Head does in fact get it in the next few panels will Mr. Tummy be next? Is he going to be just another victim or will he be the familiar mythological image of the sly, swift rabbit?

Maybe it's my own twisted imagination, but I have this ugly image of the Somnivore biting Dummy-Head's head off right as he plucks the flower. A kind of double plucking if you will.

Neat stuff...
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John Stephens

Post by John Stephens »

With a light switch near the window, it looks like the house desinger knew there was a somnivore in the neighborhood.

blackhole

wow

Post by blackhole »

Wow!! We're reviewing a comic before it's even finished! hee hee.
I though Scott would be doing one comic every day or two. (since it says "every morning" on the thingie.)

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Re: wow

Post by Cyborg Caveman »

Anonymous wrote:Wow!! We're reviewing a comic before it's even finished! hee hee.
I though Scott would be doing one comic every day or two. (since it says "every morning" on the thingie.)
Yeah, he does a new panel or two every morning until the comic is complete and then starts in on a new one. As for reviewing it before it's even done - -what can I say? I enjoy engaging in pointless speculation about where a story might or might not go.
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Post by Scott McCloud »

I LOVE it when you guys speculate. Please feel free.

^_^

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Aww....

Post by Christopher Lundgren »

That was much less violent than I would have made it. I was expecting to see a more Wild Kingdom kind of end to Mr. "Dummyhead." Maybe a quick chomp, and then tossed up in the air to be positioned for the coup de grace. And then BITE! And down the gullet.

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Re: Aww....

Post by Alexander D. »

Christopher Lundgren wrote:That was much less violent than I would have made it. I was expecting to see a more Wild Kingdom kind of end to Mr. "Dummyhead." Maybe a quick chomp, and then tossed up in the air to be positioned for the coup de grace. And then BITE! And down the gullet.
I think the important difference here is that the Somnivore didn't simply eat Dummyhead -- he ate the entire dreamscape, including Dummyhead, Mr. Tummy, and the entire geography of the land. Which is conceptually much more violent.

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Post by Greg Stephens »

But there's no indication that this Improv is done yet, so anything could happen. I don't expect we'll see actual violence, but something (more) chilling could occur.
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Post by buzzard »

This is really belated, but I just noticed that one of the current losing titles is Mr. Dinky and Bo-Bo Head and the names of the two dream characters are Mr. Tummy and Dummy-head.

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Beware the switch

Post by NatGertler »

I think the oddly-placed light switch is more important than we realized. Is it the switch that someone turns off towards the start of the piece? But, wait, it's on again in the morning, before anyone tries to wake her up! So if it was turned off, who turned it on? And if it wasn't turned off, what does it operate that was left on all night???

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Re: Beware the switch

Post by Rip Tanion »

NatGertler wrote:I think the oddly-placed light switch is more important than we realized. Is it the switch that someone turns off towards the start of the piece? But, wait, it's on again in the morning, before anyone tries to wake her up! So if it was turned off, who turned it on? And if it wasn't turned off, what does it operate that was left on all night???
Or it could be that Scott made a bo-bo...er...boo-boo.

Image Image
Compare, above, panels 2 (top center) and 27 (bottom right).

While the image behind the window changes, the wall of the room is drawn identicaly in both panels. Only the color and shade is different. This leads me to believe the Scott either used a template on both panels, or copied the foreground layer from panel 2, and pasted it into panel 27. It's possible that Scott didn't notice the light-switch difference, since he uses little more than a rectangle, and a bent line, to indicate it.

Well, at least I didn't notice the diference until Nat pointed it out. OK, so maybe Scott isn't as spaced out as me. Maybe he did do it on purpose. Maybe it's all part of his diobolical master plan!
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Autobiographical elements?

Post by wansley »

buzzard wrote:This is really belated, but I just noticed that one of the current losing titles is Mr. Dinky and Bo-Bo Head and the names of the two dream characters are Mr. Tummy and Dummy-head.
I wonder if the names Mr. Tummy and Dummy-head were used by either of Scott McCloud's daughters for her toys. Probably not. I am not sure what is going to happen/has happened to the unnamed girl in "Somnivore" but it doesn't seem as if it will be good.

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