Page 5 and Detroit

Black Snow: Two Drink Minimum page 5
Black Snow: Two Drink Minimum page 5

I got things a bit more organized and drew this one quite a bit faster by making my layers in a specific order and grouping what was on them in a better way. I also named them for pretty much the first time instead of just using the numbers.

I think it turned out well. I really love Black Snow in the top right panel. Great pose and delivery of dialogue.

There are a few things of note as far as the content here. For one, that feral cat thing is very real. Detroit is totally overrun by them, and has been for some years. Look it up, there are plenty of stories about it. The surrounding woods combined with all the abandoned houses and factories has given way to huge free roaming packs of wild cats (and dogs to a lesser extent). One estimate from a news story earlier this month puts it at 675,000 feral cats, and that’s just in metro Detroit!

This is an example of why we chose Detroit as our backdrop. The place is fascinating and insane. It really needs super heroes. It’s like one of the USA’s most prominent cities has become some desolate 3rd world country.

Next item of interest, San Jose, CA (my home town and current residence) did indeed surpass Detroit as the tenth largest city. An interesting connection. I see two reasons: 1. People fleeing Detroit as all the car factories went out of business and murder/slash crime was still incredibly high. 2. People moving to San Jose as the hi-tech job market continues to rebound, as it is an excellent hub city surrounded by many of the big companies.

Another interesting fact, it was around the same time that Detroit stopped being America’s #1 city for murder and crime that San Jose lost its title as the safest big city in America (to Virginia Beach(?!), we’re still #2).

Another point of interest: We already casually dropped the s-bomb! I’ve always been fairly reserved when it comes to swearing in the comics (and to a lesser extent, in life), as I think you have to be careful about how you do it and what purpose it serves. Often untalented people just swear as a crutch to help them along, and I never wanted to be like that. I’ve also had concerns about narrowing our potential audience. But really, you hear so much cussing on any given elementary school playground or slightly edgy cartoon these days it has become less of an issue. More of a moralistic issue I suppose.

But we’ve made the choice, awhile ago really, to be more adult comics that contain adult language and situations. So no more straddling the fence, but don’t expect us to go overboard either. Heavy cursing is still reserved for the unintelligent and uncreative in my mind.

Oh, lastly, that reveal in the last panel should be recognized as a big deal, as we are (finally) getting to some plot and story movement (with our old friend the Lone Wolf as a possible villain no less)!

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