Robot 6

Strangeways: Murder Moon – Page 21

People often ask me why I’m happy to see summer go.  Because my kids will be back in school then and maybe I’ll be able to have a couple hours of sanity and non-distraction a day.  Maybe.  I can dream at least.  At any rate, here’s today’s page, a touch late, apologies.

Written by Matt Maxwell.  Art by Luis Guragna.

Written by Matt Maxwell. Art by Luis Guragna.

Another of my favorite pages.  You know the drill.

And you all thought the wolf had gone, didn’t you?  Look closely in panel 5.  And there’s *two* of them now?  Aw geez, is life ever not fair.

Instead of baring his soul to Abbot, Collins backs down, unable or unwilling to deal with what he’s carrying around.  And then life intrudes, as it so often does.  Could be that the wolf is back.  Could be nothing.  Could be, like I said, that there’s a pair of wolves stalking him now.  We don’t know.  Collins doesn’t know.  And all of that uncertainty doesn’t prevent Collins from acting.  He’s standing ready, perhaps afraid, but not backing down from his task of keeping Abbot alive long enough for help to arrive.

That last panel gets me every time.  I liked it so much, it ended up on the banner art that I run at shows, as well as the back of the book itself, to give folks a taste of what’s to come.  I don’t know what it is, but to be able to conjure up entire worlds out of black ink scratchings on paper, that’s the real magic of comic art.  Sometimes, as a writer, I feel like I’m just along for the ride, particularly in the face of auteur theories of comics criticism, in that only writer/artists matter.  Needless to say, this makes writers like me (who can’t draw their way out of a paper bag) a little nervous.  Maybe we’re really not needed.  Maybe we’re just in the way.  Maybe those Image guys were right all along.

But then I’m reminded that it all starts with words on paper.  And while Luis wasn’t dictated directions completely, he didn’t come up with the story on his own either.

Still, I couldn’t do anything like panel 6 if my life depended on it.  Collins is sweating in spite of the cool, but his resolve is solid.  He’s not backing down.  He’s not going to abandon Abbot.  He’s going to gut that wolf with a calvary saber if he has to.

Let’s see how this all turns out on Monday, won’t we?

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