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SmartrykFoster
08-25-2012, 11:56 PM
Hi Everyone!

Feveryn Ardacia is a weekly series that I want to put on YouTube (auditions have been posted on 3 voice acting websites).

When I say 'dramatized manga,' I mean that it'll be kind of like the cross between a manga and a radio play, with the images providing visual impact to the audio part of the story (like an anime, but with manga panels instead of animation).

This is intended to be a weekly series, 7-8 minutes per episode, but the series could run for 60+ episodes.

The plan is to put it on YouTube and earn money through advertising revenue. I can offer an artist a percentage of the revenue, but no money up-front.


Now before you call me crazy!!

I realize how long it takes to draw things, and I don't want to put too much work on the artist. For example, I don't expect an artist to spend 2 hours drawing an image, and I don't expect the image to be drawn with a lot of detailed artwork.

The story could demand a new image every 20 - 30 seconds, but for 7-8 minutes a week that's 20 - 30 images. If an artist draws 4 images a day (4 x 7 = 28), but takes 2 hours to draw an image, that's a full-time job. I will not expect that from an artist!


The story is written in screenplay format (for movie or TV scripts), and I can work with the artist on deciding how to present the story visually. Sometimes backgrounds can be reused (stock production images), or a images of individual characters can be reused in other places.

We can work something out. More details in the Help Wanted section.

I was thinking of an art style somewhere between the animes of Gundam Wing, Rideback and Birdy The Mighty: Decode.

But I'm willing to look at Any manga/anime art style if the artist is good at drawing subtlety and emotional expression (facial expressions and body language).

I'm not looking for a lot of detail in the art, but I need an artist who can draw emotional expression to match the quality of the voice acting.

But for a basic guideline: I would like the size of each character's eyes to be proportional to the size of a human head, and I would like the nose to look like a nose, not a protrusion of the top lip.


Here's the first 3 episodes of the script! The forum is going to mess up the formatting (the script was exported from a screenwriting program).



Feveryn Ardacia
Smartryk Foster (Story & Screenplay)

Episode 001

FADE IN:

INT. COLONY DOCKING BAY - DAY
The docking bay is big, full of activity. People dressed in overalls are using large machines, that look almost like forklifts, to unload storage containers from spaceships.

(Note: The storage containers are 8 foot cubed.)

A LONG SHOT shows part of some spaceships in the frame. A woman walks from near the entrance of one spaceship to a man who is standing nearby. (The space ship is a freighter that transports 8 foot cubed cargo containers. There should an entrance large enough to accommodate that.) The man is wearing a business suit and standing next to a luggage suitcase. The man is wearing a wrist watch (an old fashioned watch face with arms). The woman is dressed in professional attire, a jacket and vest, wearing white gloves and a captain's hat. We go to a MEDIUM SHOT of the man and the captain. The captain holds out her hand for a handshake.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS
(cheerful)
Hello. I'm Captain SONIA PETRAUSKAS.

HARUTO YAMADA
(nervous)
H-Hello, ma'am. I'm HARUTO YAMADA.

Haruto shakes Sonia's hand.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS
(slight giggle)
Don't worry, I don't bite.

HARUTO YAMADA
(nervous)
S-Sorry, ma'am. It'll be my first time on a spaceship.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS
(smile)
Don't worry, you'll get used too it. Just make sure you keep your passport valid. Are you ready to go?

HARUTO YAMADA
(smile)
Yes, ma'am.

A low-level Port Authority worker comes running toward them from behind Haruto.

PORT WORKER
(catching breath)
Captain Petra! -gasp- I'm glad I found you. They want you back at the Port Authority office.

Sonia turns toward the Port Authority worker.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS
(surprised)
Oh?

PORT WORKER
(whisper)
I'm not supposed to tell you this, but it's the police ...and they don't look happy.

Sonia looks even more surprised. Haruto looks a little shocked and confused.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS
(to Port Worker)
Oh, thank you...

SONIA PETRAUSKAS (CONT'D)
(to Haruto Yamada)
Please excuse me, I have to go.

Sonia takes a small hand-held computer out of her pocket. It has a touch-screen display. Take a CLOSE SHOT of the computer display screen. While she's talking, she presses the 'Set Key Card' button, and it asks her for a room number. She types 'D32.'

SONIA PETRAUSKAS (CONT'D)
Here's the key to your room. If anyone on the ship asks, show them the key and tell them that you're the new accountant.

Return to a MEDIUM SHOT. The Port Authority Worker has started walking toward the Port Authority office. Sonia, in a rush, pulls a key card out of her other pocket and swipes it across the screen of the hand-held computer. As the key card moves away from the screen, we see something displayed on the screen in bright green. Sonia is talking while she does this.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS (CONT'D)
There are information screens all over the ship. You can use them to check the ship's map and find your room.

SONIA PETRAUSKAS (CONT'D)
(smile)
Here. It's room D33. Sorry to run off like this.

Sonia gives Haruto a quick, hurried smile, puts the key card in his hand, and quickly walks toward the Port Authority Office.

HARUTO YAMADA
Thank you, ma'am. I'll--

Haruto looks confused and curious as he watches Sonia walk away.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
--see you... later...

Then Haruto looks at the key card, looks at the ship in front of him, and starts walking toward the ship.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
(whisper)
D33, D33, D33...

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: HALLWAY - DAY
Haruto arrives in front of a door that says 'D33' alongside the side the door, above the 'key and communicator' screen. Haruto looks at the door. (His suitcase is on the floor beside him.)

HARUTO YAMADA
D33.

Haruto swipes the key card across the door's key pad, and a red light glows on the pad.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
Huh?

Haruto tries again, and the red light appears again. Haruto tries swiping the other side of the card, and a red light appears again. He looks at the card, a bit confused.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
D... 33?

Haruto looks right, then left. PAN the screen Left, to show a door marked 'D32.' Haruto picks up his suitcase and walks to the door. He swipes the key card across the door pad of D32, and a green light appears on the pad.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
Huh, guess I was wr--

The door opens, to reveal a classy, up-scale room. The type of room that you think is reserved for important guests.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
(shocked)
Wow.

Haruto cautiously enters the room and looks around. CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: GUEST ROOM - CONTINUOUS
The door automatically closes behind him. There's a large bedroom with a double bed, dresser, mirror, and an adjoining bathroom with a jacuzzi. The floor is nicely carpeted, and the bed looks beautiful with fluffy pillows and a high quality blanket. Next to the bathroom is a walk-in closet (the closet door is closed; Haruto doesn't open the door).
Haruto is in awe. Then a smile breaks out across his face. He puts his suitcase on the floor.

HARUTO YAMADA
I think I'm going to -yawn- like it... here.

Haruto checks his wrist watch (old fashioned watch face with arms).
CLOSE SHOT on the wrist watch display. It says 3:32am.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
(yawn)
Oh... no wonder.

CUT TO...

INT. COLONY DOCKING BAY - DAY
A small army of police officers run toward, and into, Sonia's ship. OFFICER PETER CONNERS stops near the entrance by a communicator screen on the wall. Officer Conners' voice is spoken over a SERIES OF SHOTS: INT. SONIA'S SHIP - HALLWAYS, CARGO HOLD, MESS HALL. The police are running through all these places, securing the area, motioning to the crew to leave the Hallways and Cargo Hold and, from the Hallways, motioning the crew to get into their rooms and checking faces against a crew list on hand-held computers.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS (V.O.)
(stern)
This is the police! This ship under lockdown. Go to your quarters and wait for the a police officer to confirm your identity. After you have been identified, your quarters will be locked. You are to remain inside them until further notice. Anyone who resists will be arrested.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Please return to your quarters Now.

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: BRIDGE - DAY

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(angry)
I'm the ship's First Officer, and I demand to know what's going on, Now!

JOHN ARMSTRONG, a middle-aged African-American man, is on the bridge of the ship with the ship's purchasing officer, ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA. Officer Conners wants them to leave the bridge. Anastasia is also angry.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
Sorry, Mr. Armstrong, but that's classified. Please return to your quarters.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(upset)
Oh, and where's the Captain? Can you tell us that? I'm staying here until you give me some answers!

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
(irritated)
Look, we have our orders! If you don't return to your quarters peacefully, you'll be arrested, do you understand?

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(angry)
Do what you want, but I'm staying Right Here until I speak to the person in charge!

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
(irritated)
Fine!

The Officer Conners pulls out his communication device. CUT TO...

INT. PORT AUTHORITY OFFICE - DAY
Standing in the room is a tall, tough guy with a strong build and white hair. He has a short, white beard around his jaw and he's wearing a dark coat. We see the front of his body in the frame.
We hear a phone ring from his pocket. He's looking down toward someone who is in front of him (out of frame) as he takes the phone out of his pocket and answers it.

DONAGH VALERIO
Yes?

OFFICER PETER CONNERS (O.S.)
(over the phone)
Sir, there are two people on the bridge -first officer, John Armstrong, and Anastasia Novikova- who refuse to budge until they speak to you.

DONAGH VALERIO
Hmm... I'm busy. If they won't move on their own, move them by force.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS (O.S.)
(over the phone)
Yes, sir!

DONAGH VALERIO
Has the special unit arrived yet?

OFFICER PETER CONNERS (O.S.)
(over phone)
No, sir. Word is, they're about thirty minutes out.

DONAGH VALERIO
Good. Stay on top of things over there.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
(over the phone)
Yes, sir!

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: BRIDGE - CONTINUOUS

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
(stern)
You either move by yourselves, or I move you by force. Those are my orders.

Officer Conners raises his gun, indicating that he is willing to shoot them.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(angry)
Then you ca--

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(annoyed)
Fine, okay. My room is down the hall, the second door on the right.

Anastasia steps in front of John, then steps toward the door. John is surprised for a moment, then tries to contain his anger -he assumes that Anastasia has a plan.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
(annoyed)
Move it, Armstrong.

Officer Conners motions for John to walk toward the door. John grudgingly walks toward Anastasia, who is waiting by the door. CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: HALLWAY - CONTINUOUS
Officer Conners, John Armstrong and Anastasia Novikova stand outside Room D30, Anastasia's room. (There is a door of room D32 is across from Anastasia's room door.) Anastasia puts her hand on the key pad to open the door (it scans the veins in her hand like a fingerprint) and walks inside. John hesitates, then Officer Conners pushes him through the doorway.

OFFICER PETER CONNERS
Get in!

John stumbles in... CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: ANASTASIA'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS
...and quickly turns around to protest.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(angry)
Hey, you--!!

Then the door slides shut in front of him, and the 'key and communicator' pad beside the door displays 'LOCKED.'

Anastasia sits on the bed; she's annoyed. On the far side of the room, opposite of the door, there's a big flat screen with rounded edges. The screen looks like it's embedded in the wall. The screen has a matt surface, so that there's no glare seen on it, and the screen is black (it's turned off). CUT TO...

INT. PORT AUTHORITY OFFICE - CONTINUOUS
Officer Valerio puts the phone back into his pocket.

DONAGH VALERIO
That means we've got thirty minutes--

The view cuts to Sonia Petrauskas, sitting on a chair in front of him, hands cuffed behind the chair's back. Her hat is ungracefully sitting on the floor, one of her eyes is half-closed, and there's a reddish 'slap' mark on her cheek under the half-closed eye.

DONAGH VALERIO (CONT'D)
--for you to tell me why you have a nuclear weapon on your ship.

Sonia slowly looks up at him; she's confused and in pain, and angry.


FADE OUT:


Episode 002

FADE IN:

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: ANASTASIA'S ROOM - DAY
ANASTASIA is sitting on the bed, annoyed. On the far side of the room, opposite the door, there's a big flat screen with rounded edges. The screen looks like it's embedded in the wall. The screen has a matt surface, so that no glare is seen on it, and the screen is black (it's turned off.)

Anastasia touches a bottom corner of the screen, and a computer navigation display appears beneath her fingers. She touches a 'display' button, and the screen suddenly shows the stars from the view point of a camera opposite the screen on the hull of the ship.

Meanwhile, JOHN is pacing back and forth...

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(angry)
Who do they think they are!?

CLOSE UP on Anastasia.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (O.S.) (CONT'D)
We have rights!! And where's the captain!?

Anastasia looks like she's thinking, while John is ranting. Return to Medium Shot.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (CONT'D)
They won't even tell us--

Anastasia cycles through live security camera footage in public areas on the ship. Each shot is from the perspective of a camera being in a ceiling corner of the room. SERIES OF SHOTS: Mess Hall, Gym, Cargo Hold. She stops at the Cargo Hold.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
John.

CLOSE UP of the black display screen. The camera view on the display screen is a LONG SHOT of the cargo hold, from the perspective of the security camera being near the ceiling of the cargo hold. The camera shows a few police officers, guns drawn, standing on the floor, and a corner of the camera's view shows the bottom part of two or three cargo containers.

There are many containers in the cargo hold. The containers are 8 foot cubed and stacked side by side and one on top of the other. Each container is secured to the floor and each other at the corners. The containers are stacked to the ceiling, but we don't see that yet. The ceiling is about 24 feet above the floor.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (O.S.)
--what they're looking for or how long--

Part of Anastasia's body, like an arm or her head, can be in the close up shot.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
John!

Return to MEDIUM SHOT, from the perspective of the black screen.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
What?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
Look.

Anastasia looks at the screen and turns up the volume, while John walks over and, a little confused, looks at the screen.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
Hmm...?

Change view to look at the black screen. CLOSE UP on the black screen.
One of the police officers is talking into a communicator.

POLICE OFFICER 1
(audio from the screen)
..ea secured. We're looking for the container. This could take a while.

Two other police officers talk amongst themselves.

POLICE OFFICER 2
(audio from the screen)
Does anyone know how to operate this thing?

POLICE OFFICER 3
(audio from the screen)
I do. Worked in a warehouse once. But we're supposed to wait for a special unit to arrive.

POLICE OFFICER 2
(audio from the screen)
The special unit? ...hey, don't they deal with hazardous waste!?

POLICE OFFICER 3
(audio from the screen)
Yeah. Rumor has it, they're looking for a nuclear weapon on the ship.

POLICE OFFICER 2
(audio from the screen)
What, are you kidding!? A dirty bomb!? And no one told us!?

POLICE OFFICER 3
(audio from the screen)
Yeah. Apparently, we have to confirm its location before they call in the military.

POLICE OFFICER 2
(audio from the screen)

POLICE OFFICER 2 (CONT'D)
Man, they don't pay me enough for this!

POLICE OFFICER 3
(audio from the screen)
You 'n' me both, man. You 'n' me both.

Return to MEDIUM SHOT. John and Anastasia are both stunned. Anastasia looks a little worried. She mutes the screen audio.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(stunned)
No wonder... Oh, man...

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(worried)
We need to find Sonia, ASAP.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
But we don't know where she is, do we?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
She left the ship to meet the new accountant. But if there's a nuclear weapon, who are they going to hold responsible?

John gives Anastasia a nervous look. Anastasia gives John a worried look and then switches on the external camera feed that shows what happens outside the ship's entrance. Anastasia rewinds the video until they see Captain Sonia Petrauskas walking toward Haruto Yamada. The camera shows a LONG SHOT that is the same as the LONG SHOT in Episode 1, Scene 1.

John and Anastasia see captain Sonia walking toward Haruto. (Anastasia fast-forwards the video to the important parts.)

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (CONT'D)
That should be the new accountant.

Then they see the Port Authority Worker run up to Sonia.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
Who's he?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
No idea, but he's from the Port Authority.

They see Captain Sonia walk away in a hurry, and see a confused Haruto walk toward the ship's entrance.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (CONT'D)
She walks away, that guy waltzes onto the ship--

Anastasia fast-forwards the video until it shows the police entering the ship.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (CONT'D)
--and a few minutes later, the police storm in!

JOHN ARMSTRONG
Where is he now?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
How should I know? You know there are no cameras in the hallways!

JOHN ARMSTRONG
So you didn't get that 'spy camera in the crew quarters' thing to work?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
I tried! But--

Anastasia suddenly freezes, realizing what she's saying, then she slowly, nervously looks at John. John looks at her scoldingly.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(disapproving)
*mmm-hmm.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(guilty)
Ehe...

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(thinking)
So how did a nuclear weapon get aboard the ship?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
Maybe it was smuggled in? We look at the contents description on the shipping order, we don't look inside the containers. Privacy restrictions, all that stuff. If it clears Port security, it's good enough for us.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(thinking)
And it was a guy from the Port Authority Office who talked to the captain...

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(surprised)
Are you thinking it was a setup!?

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(thinking)
But why would they wait until now? We finished loading the cargo hours ago.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(shocked)
...what if it's a sting!?

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(surprised)
Huh?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(thinking)
What if this was a sting operation? The Port Authority guy only talked to Sonia after she met with the accountant! What if the accountant is an undercover cop!?

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(sigh)
If we're being framed--

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(determined)
We've got to get to Sonia, now!

JOHN ARMSTRONG
(surprised)
Seriously? The ship is crawling with cops! And we don't know where she is!

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
But smuggling nuclear weapons is an act of treason! If they've got her...

JOHN ARMSTRONG
Not unless we can prove our innocence!

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(determined)
The cops wouldn't be here if there wasn't a nuclear weapon on this ship!

JOHN ARMSTRONG
Do you have any idea what we'd going up against!? If we can't prove our innocence, everyone, All of us, will be held responsible!

John paces back and forth as he talks. Anastasia presses a button on the screen when John turns his back, but he doesn't notice the new, little light on the screen when he turns around again.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (CONT'D)
We're out-gunned, out-manned, and we don't have a plan! Sonia my friend too, but we can't just risk our lives to rescue her without a plan! Where would we go? How would we escape? How do we take back control of the ship?

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
(excited)
I've got it covered! The Transport Authority rules state that every ship is allowed to have one gun for each person on board, and four rounds of ammunition per weapon! And Aysha just put in a new engine! If we use it, we can fly to some friends of mine before the cops can catch us!

John is taken aback. Anastasia smiles sweetly.

JOHN ARMSTRONG
T-that doesn't explain how we're going to break out the captain, or even where she is!

John gets back his steam.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (CONT'D)
We need a good plan, and the guts to pull it off! Do you think our crew has that kind of courage!? This wouldn't be a piece of cake! Have you thought about it? And about life running from the cops? Living in fear, lurking in the shadows--

John looks surprised as he notices the light on the screen. A CLOSE SHOT reveals words next to the light: 'Crew Quarters.'

John looks shocked. Anastasia grins sweetly. CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: MATT AND JAKE'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS
MATTHEW WILLIAMS is lying down on the top bunk of bunk beds that are built into the wall. JAKE ROBERTSON is sitting on the bottom bunk. Matt looks surprised and Jake looks enthusiastic as they listen to the audio from the black display screen.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (O.S.)
(audio from the screen)
Oh no...

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: AYSHA AND SELENA'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS
AYSHA ALIZADEH and SELENA ROBERTSON are each sitting on chairs around a small table. Both women are wearing overalls. AYSHA is listening to the audio with a grin on her face and an open book in her hands. Selena's fists are clenched.

AYSHA ALIZADEH
(grin)
Hehe.

JOHN ARMSTRONG (O.S.)
(audio from the screen)
...You didn't.

SELENA ROBERTSON
(angry)
In My cargo hold!?

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: ANASTASIA'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS
John stands with his head resting in his hand, his other arm folded. His eyes are shut tightly, like he's embarrassed and thinking to himself 'How could I have been so Stupid?'

Anastasia, with a smile, talks sweetly in an announcer voice.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA
May I have your attention please. All members of the crew who wish to leave the ship--

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: ADRI'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS
ADRI SHEKHAWAT is sitting on the bottom bunk of a bunk bed that's built into the wall. He's leaning forward, and grinning, as he hears Anastasia's voice.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (O.S.)
(audio from the screen)
--please submit a resignation form and leave within the next fifteen minutes.

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: DR. SHUANG ZHAO - CONTINUOUS
Dr. Zhao has his own room. There is a bookshelf where a bunk bed would normally be. Dr. Zhao's bed is on the other side of the room. He sits at his desk, which is next to the door and across from the black screen. He is wearing a white doctor's coat. His chair is turned slightly toward the black screen, as he glances over his shoulder at the screen.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (O.S.)
(audio from the screen)
Your outstanding pay and a termination fee will be sent to you as soon as reasonably possible.

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: GUEST ROOM - CONTINUOUS
Haruto Yamada is lying on the guest bed, wearing a t-shirt, boxer underwear and socks. Haruto is snoring, fast asleep.

ANASTASIA NOVIKOVA (O.S.)
(audio from the screen)
This is your last chance to leave the ship. I repeat, this is your Last chance to leave the ship.


FADE OUT:

SmartrykFoster
08-26-2012, 07:18 PM
Hi Regantor!

I did read some of the Black Lagoon manga, and watched a few episodes of the series, but this isn't anything like that. Even though Haruto's introduction may appear that way, the simple fact that Captain Sonia Petrauskas (a woman, not a guy), along with the crew, was kind of surprised that the police would storm their ship is a clear indicator that they are not smugglers, or anywhere near the same occupation as the cast of Black Lagoon. This story is going to play out very differently.

These are just the first 3 episodes. The first 18 episodes have already been scripted.

This series is a drama, but also a comedy with mystery and romance. The comedy comes from character interaction. But since you're mentioning Black Lagoon, this series would be PG, at the most. It's not going to have the hard action of Black Lagoon (nor the language that is used in that show).

If you want to compare it, a better comparison would be Full Metal Panic.

And yes, all your complaints are are intentional parts of the show. It's part of the larger plot, which will be revealed over time. And I didn't want to bog down the show with heavy exposition, especially with 7 minute episodes, and because it's a mystery.

As for lampshading, the crew doesn't really know what's going on either. John and Anastasia find out about the nuke from a conversation between cops, and the cops are apparently not supposed to know about it either. So that's a subtle hint that the police didn't 'detect' it on the ship, they traced it to the ship through an investigation. That's also why the police have to verify that it's there before they call in the military.

And if the crew of the ship really is smuggling a nuke, and the ship is simply ejected into space, couldn't the crew just... fly away? That didn't seem like a good idea, especially if the police want to stop them from using, or delivering, the nuke for a nefarious purpose.

Which brings us back to your question: Is there really a nuke?

You may like the story more if you read the first 18 episodes (there could be 60+ episodes), but if you don't like the story so far, you would basically want me to re-write the whole story, plot and all. That would make it a totally different story.

Thank you for your compliment on my potential~ This series could be a gateway series for other series' set in the same universe, which would be more like Gundam in nature.

But for this series itself, I believe in this series. And I'm not going to re-write it.

Maybe we can work together in a different series later on?


EDIT:
To Everyone: I'm deleting the double-post that contains episode 3. If you want to read the episode, please let me know and I will either edit this post or post it after your reply.

Rio
09-04-2012, 10:36 AM
Seems like it went through this time. Let me know if it happens again. :>

AlmanacnamedTime
09-05-2012, 07:16 PM
I saw all the problems as reg, and if you fix them I am interested in doing some voice acting. I can do lots of voices and derivitaves of them.

SmartrykFoster
09-07-2012, 02:47 PM
Regantor, sorry if I made you seem like a jerk. AlmanacnamedTime pointed to your comments and basically said 'I agree with him.' Then I addressed those comments, which probably made you feel like a jerk.

But from my perspective, only 2 of your statements were actually critiques.


To Everyone:

From dictionary.com

"critique

1. an article or essay criticizing a literary or other work; detailed evaluation; review."


"criticism

1. the act of passing judgment as to the merits of anything.

3. the act or art of analyzing and evaluating or judging the quality of a literary or artistic work, musical performance, art exhibit, dramatic production, etc.

5. any of various methods of studying texts or documents for the purpose of dating or reconstructing them, evaluating their authenticity, analyzing their content or style, etc.: historical criticism; literary criticism."


Critique and constructive criticism both require analytical reviews. A person's opinion is highly subjective.

Saying what your opinion is without saying why you have that opinion is not constructive.


For example, saying that Haruto feels like Rokuro from Black Lagoon is an observation. And yes, I agree with that. Saying that you find the story boring or unoriginal because Haruto feels like Rokuro is a subjective opinion. That's a subjective opinion ...what am I supposed to do with that?

If you say why you think it's boring, I can address that. That is criticism. But the second question is: Does it work with the mechanics of the story? If it should be changed, what is a better alternative? The answer to that is a story critique.


For example: 'I think the story is boring because nothing much has happened yet.'

Why, specifically, do you think that nothing much has happened?

'The story is moving too slowly. It feels like the characters aren't doing anything. The plot isn't progressing fast enough.'

Why, specificially?

'The police are looking for a nuclear weapon on the ship, but instead of storming the ship and searching for it, they send out a Port Authority guy to find the captain and leave the ship docked at the port. What if the weapon is armed? Why don't they just force the ship out of the colony and deal with it out there? How did they find the nuke? Do they have scanners that can detect that, or something? And the ship's first officer and that other girl just sit around talking for a whole episode. If they're smuggling a nuclear weapon, shouldn't they have a plan for when the police storm their ship?'

That is criticism.

'I think it would be better if there's a stronger feeling of urgency. The police look incompetent if they're taking so long to deal with a possible nuclear weapon; that is dangerous, and I would think it's even more dangerous to a space colony. It would be better if the police act like the weapon is a serious threat, and try to protect the colony as quickly as possible. And it would be nice if we could find out how the police knew that it was there. If the crew is smuggling it or intend to detonate it, they should look more competant. It's not believable that a crew who has a nuclear weapon would bumble around like amateurs. If the crew is innocent, it would be nice if you hint at that, or explain why they have a nuclear weapon on the ship. Overall, it feels like the story has too many unanswered questions, and the plot isn't moving fast enough to be exciting. It doesn't feel like the audience actually knows what's going on.'

That is a critique, and something that I can respond too.


This is intended to be an long, ongoing weekly series and the pacing of the artwork has to match the pacing of the story, otherwise it would be jarring. I'm constrained by the business model (which is a result of constrained finances) because an artist would only be able to draw so-much every week. And if I get multiple artists, that would cost too much (or their wouldn't be eneough revenue for all the voice actors), which means that I would have to remove characters from the story. If I do that, it means I'd have to re-write the story. So I can't draw a big story with a lot of action, because then it would take longer than a week to draw an episode. And it would be very hard to fit the story into 2 or 3 minute weekly episodes (and people still care about it enough to watch it).

Wouldn't it be better to have a better story, even if it takes longer to produce? Maybe, but that's better for shorter stories, not an ongoing series. And the idea was to put the series on YouTube to generate revenue. So there should be enough story in each episode for the audience to feel 'satisfied,' and the episodes should be released often enough, on a consistent schedule, to maintain audience retention.

That's not an excuse for the story, but it defines the limits of what I have to work with. Any fixes for the story need to fit inside those boundries.


Now, addressing the points of criticism.

First, from the perspective of the police: Do they have reason to believe that the nuclear weapon is armed? What do they think the ship plans to do with the nuclear weapon?

A better point to address first is:
How did the police know that there's a nuclear weapon on the ship? If they detected it with some kind of scanning device, when did they do that and how does that device work? Would they be able to know whether the nuclear weapon is armed?

At the end of episode 1, Valerio asks Sonia why she has a nuclear weapon on her ship. And she looks up at him, confused and angry. During episode 2, a conversation between cops reveals that the cops don't know what's on the ship, and they are only securing it until the 'special unit' arrives to determine whether or not there's a nuke on the ship before they call in the military.

So right there, that addresses one question: The cops Don't know if there's a nuke on the ship. In fact, two cops in the cargo bay don't know that there's a nuke, and we could assume, from 'rumor has it,' that the other cops also don't know what's supposed to be on the ship. The only one who seems to know what they're looking for is Valerio. So if the cops didn't find it by scanning for it, why Do they (or Valerio) suspect there to be a nuclear weapon on the ship?

Now here, I'm relying on pre-existing knowledge of the audience, or logical deduction, because I found it hard to work it naturally into the dialog. The police are running an investigation. (There are Many cop shows on TV, and when the police aren't looking at an obvious criminal, they investigate. That's part of police work. Usually, the police don't swoop in without evidence that a crime has been committed, or a warrant. And to get a warrant, they must have reasonable suspicion that something criminal is going on, or that they can find evidence or information involving a specific criminal activity.)

A 'special unit' is arriving (from 30 minutes away) to verify whether or not there is a nuclear weapon on the ship. If the Port had a scanning device capable of detecting a nuclear weapon, why would the police be waiting for the 'special unit' to arrive? I implied that in the dialog between the cops (the cops don't know what's supposed to be on the ship, but 'rumor has it' that it's a nuclear weapon, and the special unit has to verify that before they call in the military).

If the Port is capable of scaninng for, and detecting, a nuclear weapon, why wouldn't they call the miltary first, instead of the cops securing the ship and waiting for the 'special unit'? Again, that implies that neither the cops nor the Port used a scanning device to find a nuclear weapon.

Which brings us back to a police investigation (because the existence of a scanning device that has already found the nuclear weapon... doesn't make sense).

Do the police have reason to believe that the nuclear weapon is armed? (What do the police believe that the crew intends to do with a nuclear weapon?)

It was hard trying to work those answers into the dialog, but the fact that Valerio isn't in a rush when he's speaking to Sonia, and Valerio is the only one who seems to know what's on the ship, should imply that Valerio isn't in a hurry. Which should imply that the colony is in no immediate danger from the nuclear weapon, which should imply that Valerio doesn't think that it's armed (otherwise, it would be stupid to take his time when there's an armed nuke on the ship).

But that wasn't easy to state in the dialog either. We don't know the details of Valerio's investigation, but the story does state that Sonia is confused when Valerio is talking to her, and John and Anastasia seem confused to each other. Sonia is the Captain, and John is the First Officer. If they don't know that the police are looking for a nuke, how are they supposed to detonate the thing? (can are you supposed to intentionally detonate a nuke when you don't know that it exists?)

And if the crew detonates the nuke while they're on the ship, the crew would die. Does it seem like the crew would want to do that?

The story doesn't state this, but there's heavy implication (through story dialog and logical deduction) that IF the crew know that they're carrying a nuke, they're not planning to detonate it at the moment. (Which either implies than they're transporting it, or planned to detonate it later, but their future intentions are not important to the story at hand.)


But back to the points:

'The police are looking for a nuclear weapon on the ship, but instead of storming the ship and searching for it, they send out a Port Authority guy to find the captain and leave the ship docked at the port. What if the weapon is armed? Why don't they just force the ship out of the colony and deal with it out there? How did they find the nuke? Do they have scanners that can detect that, or something? And the ship's first officer and that other girl just sit around talking for a whole episode. If they're smuggling a nuclear weapon, shouldn't they have a plan for when the police storm their ship?'

Is the nuke armed? That is doubtful. Why don't they force the ship out of the colony and deal with it out there? That's a good question. The only answer I have is that if the police are conducting an investigation, and they don't think that the nuke is armed, pulling the ship into space and 'dealing with it there' would seem unnecessary once the police have locked the crew in their quarters and secured the cargo hold. That brings us back to the question of 'Why not call the military right away?' The answer that I give to that is: Mass Panic. And no, I didn't state that in the story. But I did state that the government considered 'smuggling a nuclear weapon' an act of treason. Besides the fact that a nuke could probably destroy a colony and kill a lot of people (if nothing else, by blowing a large enough hole in the colony for air to leak out).

Do they have scanners that can detect the nuke? That's unlikely. How did they find the nuke? That's not stated, but it's implied that the police are busy with an investigation.

And the ship's first officer and that other girl just sit around talking for a whole episode. If they're smuggling a nuclear weapon, shouldn't they have a plan for when the police storm their ship?

The fact that they Don't have a plan should say something. If the captain were smuggling a nuke, and the Port Authority worker told her that the police want to talk to her, Why would she go to see the police? If she's a smuggler, that would make her seem like an idiot. When a criminal is called by the police, the criminal has 2 options: Go to the police, or run. In this case, why wouldn't she run? Does she think she can talk her way out of it? Risk management. Given the captain's actions, if she Knows that there's a nuke on the ship, then she would be stupid. John and Anastasia are shocked wen they overhear the police say ther there's a nuke on the ship. Now they could be lying to each other, or one of them lying to the other, but it should be obvious that they don't appear to know what's going on (and are definitely now coordinated, so how could they be working together?).


I rely on the audience to make some assumptions and logical deduction, but those assumptions and logical deductions have a solid base. And the only way to make things clearer is by adding expository dialog, and I don't see how I can work that naturally into the story.

If anyone has any suggestions on that, or see plot/logic holes, I will gladly listen. But there are the nuts and bolts of the story.

Would adding that expository dialog make the story better? Would it make the story more exciting? Would the story still seem unoriginal and predictable (keep in mind that it's 22 minutes of story. The same length as a half-hour episode).


EDIT:
As it turns out, I was wrong.

When the voice actors recorded episode 1, it turned out to be 3 mininutes, 52 seconds long. Which means that the other episodes are probably also too short, but that gives me time to add story.

So I added more scenes:


Sonia gives Haruto a quick, hurried smile, puts the key card in his hand, and quickly walks toward the Port Authority Office.

HARUTO YAMADA
Thank you, ma'am. I'll--

Haruto looks confused and curious as he watches Sonia walk away.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
--see you... later...

Then Haruto looks at the key card, looks at the ship in front of him, and starts walking toward the ship.

HARUTO YAMADA (CONT'D)
(whisper)
D33, D33, D33...

CUT TO...

INT. PORT AUTHORITY OFFICE - DAY

Sonia has just entered the room where Valerio stands waiting for her.

Sonia: (nervous) Hello, I'm Captain Petrauskas. I was told that you wanted to see me...?

Valerio: (cold) I'm Detective Valerio of the Special Investigations Department. I'd like to ask you a few questions.

Sonia: (worried and nervous) A-Alright. I'll help in any way that I can.

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: MATT AND JAKE'S ROOM - DAY

Jake is lying on the bottom bunk of the bunk beds with his hands behind (underneath?) his head. Jake looks bored. Matt changing into his pilot's uniform; he's buttoning up his shirt.

Jake: (bored) Where is that guy?

Matt: Sonia went to meet him. You should get changed.

Jake: (bored) Nah, it's not like I'll last long on the bridge anyway.

Matt: (chuckle) If you stop talking to the girls and keep your mind on your work, maybe Mr. Armstrong won't kick you out.

Jake: (sigh) Aww, where's the fun in that!

Matt: The only places you have left to go is Engineering and the Mess Hall. And you know that Selena won't let you near the kitchen.

Jake: -sigh-

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: AYSHA AND SELENA'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS

Aysha and Selena are sitting around a small table. Both women are wearing overalls. Aysha is reading a book. Selena has relaxed into her chair and she looks bored.

Selena: (bored) Where is he!? We should have left hours ago!!

Aysha: (casual) Complaining won't make him arrive any faster.

Selena: (bored) We could have tested the engines already!!

Aysha: (casual) Maybe.

Selena: (groan) We could have been asleep by now!

Aysha: (sigh) You have a point...

CUT TO...

INT. SONIA'S SHIP: HALLWAY - DAY
Haruto arrives in front of a door that says 'D33' alongside the side the door, above the 'key and communicator' screen. Haruto looks at the door. (His suitcase is on the floor beside him.)

HARUTO YAMADA
D33.


The new scenes show that Sonia was being cooperative, which works with her confusion at the end of the episode. Valerio introduced himself as a detective from the Special Investigations Department (which implies that he's conducting an investigation). The crew is shown as relatively normal.

Matt is changing into his uniform; Jake couldn't be bothered changing into his (new information). Aysha and Selena are both in overalls (already stated in the script), but now it shows that they're waiting for the ship to leave before they can test the engines.

It also shows that Haruto is late.


That should give enough information for the audience to know that Valerio is conducting an investigation (neither the police nor the Port detected the nuclear weapon). And the crew is shown as relatively normal before the police come in, which underpins John and Anstasia's confusion about why the police are on the ship.