The THRILLBENT Difference
Many of you are aware that Albert the Alien updates on this site every Wednesday and Friday, and also updates on Mark Waid’s THRILLBENT site every Tuesday.
For anyone unfamiliar, THRILLBENT is Mark Waid’s digital distribution site where he (and other top creators) get to play with digital format and storytelling in new and unique ways. Albert is the only all-ages property on the site currently updating for free (they also have Art and Franco’s Aw Yeah Comics series available in their store).
THRILLBENT is a fun way for me to deconstruct and tell Albert’s story in a different way, and the reveal of the locker thief was a prime example of that. So we’re going to deconstruct that sequence and how it’s viewed on the two sites.
SPOILER WARNING – IF YOU HAVEN’T READ ALBERT THE ALIEN CHAPTERS 1-4 YET, WE’RE ABOUT TO GIVE AWAY A BIG MYSTERY HERE.
When we did the big reveal of the locker thief on AlbertTheAlien.com, we did so in a typical comic way. Sure, we could have emphasized even more with a full or half page splash, but we just simply didn’t have the room to increase the drama. It looked like this:
However, when we did the Thrillbent.com update, I wanted to really go all out and increase the tension and drama of the moment. This allowed me to play and be a little creative with the pacing. Thrillbent works kind of like a slideshow – you can reveal as much as you want when you want. This is unlike a comic page where the reader absorbs a page a panel at a time – but let’s be honest here, your eye will jump ahead sometimes, which can ruin the reveal.
For Thrillbent’s sequence, I wanted to really blow this up. So I took some assets from earlier pages and edited them into the sequence, and then chopped up other panels to make the reveal more like a slow pan up the character – like in a movie.
This is what the sequence looked like for Thrillbent:
The extra shot of Wally came from a panel on Page 5 of this chapter, but I just edited the background to match the new scene. The other assets came from the same page, but were chopped up into smaller panels that revealed just a little bit each time. A little teaser, if you will. Until the final reveal of who the character is – and then we go back to the shocked expressions of Albert the Gerty.
This was a big moment for them – this is their best friend! It’s a betrayal, and something I really wanted to drive home. And it’s also one of the things I love about Thrillbent – it gives me an opportunity to play with the pacing and the reveals a little bit in this way.
So which sequence did you prefer? Are you a fan of Albert on his own site, or on Thrillbent – or both? Let me know in the comments below.