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Where to put the BLAM

edited June 2013 in Do The Work
Artist Tim Sale is an old friend and one of the reasons I'm working in comics. Yesterday we had a great exchange on FB about where to put a sound effect, and I want to share it here to get a conversation going.

Comments

  • edited June 2013
    I wrote:
    .MICKEY: Don't you want to hear my last words?
    JOE: I just did.
    SFX: BLAM

    This is from the Mamet Movie HEIST, one of my favorites.

    Tim countered with:

    Comics dialogue .MICKEY: Don't you want to hear my last words?
    SFX: BLAM
    JOE: I just did.

    I think the first version punctuates with the BLAM. It's the last thing Mickey ever hears before he dies. In the second version, joes line is post gunshot and is a punch line. But it does work better in a superhero book, I think, because it downplays the violence with a joke.

    Thoughts?
  • They're two different scenes, which treat the characters differently. While the second version may be a little "lighter" because the conclusion is the joke rather than the gunshot, it also treats Joe as less of a person, as just a victim.  In the first version Mickey addresses him (not his corpse), and he (very briefly) knows that he's about to die: no negotiating, no stalling, just "it's over".  There's more dignity to that awareness.  At the same time, Mickey has more (evil) depth in the first version.  He isn't just tossing off a quip like an action hero, he's torturing his victim with an existential taunt.
  • edited June 2013
    I think you have this backwards; Joe has the gun.
  • At the same time, Mickey has more (evil) depth in the first version.  He isn't just tossing off a quip like an action hero, he's torturing his victim with an existential taunt.
    That's how I see it too. Putting the "I just did" first means he's talking directly to Mickey -- he really hates this guy, and he's taking a couple of seconds to really twist the knife before he ends it. It's more personal. Putting the "BLAM" first means he's just talking to himself (or the audience) -- it's smug and callous, but less intense.
  • Right, Kevin.
    As I told Sale, The Mamet version would fit nicely in 100 Bullets. The second version is a bit of a Schwarzenegger line.
  • edited June 2013
    I think you have this backwards; Joe has the gun.
    JASON: D'Oh.  Isn't anyone going to put me out of my misery?
    SFX: BLAM
    RUSSELL: I just did.
  • Aaaaaaaand scene.
  • Yeah, two completely different effects. In one, the gunshot is the punchline. In the other, "I just did" is a quippy one-liner following a gunshot. I haven't seen the movie so I don't know which one is an accurate representation of it.
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