The Morningsider (Issue 1 – Act 4)

This Is Only Temporary

interior –
Columbia University
journalism lab
night

In a wide shot of the lab, we see the silhouette of a girl from behind caused by the glare of her computer screen.

close up

The girl types a newspaper article which we see on the screen. We can read the headline of “Wildlife in Morningside Park” and see a picture of a turkey in the article.

wide over-shot

The perspective shifts to over the shoulder of a man who has walked into the lab. We see Ellie’s face lit by the screen.

MAN
God, Ellie, are you still working on that wildlife piece?
close up
of Ellie’s face

Ellie looks up at him over her monitor with a tired and disinterested glare.

two shot

The man leans casually, half sitting, on the desk in front of Ellie’s desk and can see her face over her monitor. His lanky body fills the left half of the page-wide panel. She sits at her desk in the right side of the panel.

MAN
(gesturing a shrug with his palms up indidcating “what’s the big deal?”)
So people have seen turkeys and wolves in a city park. Who cares? It’s a park. Maybe the wolves will keep the squirrels and rats at bay.
ELLIE
(still typing)
Coyote
next panel
keeping the same two-shot
MAN
Huh?
ELLIE
(not looking up)
It’s a coyote. One single coyote. Not plural wolves. Wrong species, wrong number.
next panel
still keeping the same two-shot

As the phone rings.

MAN
(sarcastically)
Sorry. Whatever. I guess you’re the expert on wildlife in Morningside Park now, huh?
ELLIE
(reaching for the phone)
Trying to be.
next panel
immitating the same two-shot
but broken into two panels
showing close-ups of each of their faces
ELLIE
(on the phone)
This is she.
MAN
(oblivious to the fact that Ellie has answered the phone)
Why don’t they have one of the cross-cultural-studies zoology/journalism students working on this story, anyway?
ELLIE
(still on the phone)
Thanks for the tip.
next panel
back to the same two-shot framing

The man still leans against the desk. His arms are crossed. Ellie rushes out the door with a black cap on her head. A black jacket trails behind her in one hand. The other hand holds a small digital camera.

ELLIE
(not looking back)
Gotta run. Hot tip.
MAN
About a turkey?
exterior
wide overhead shot

We see Ellie, now wearing her jacket, running down the huge stairs that go from the Carl Schurz monument at Morningside Dr. and 116th St. down into the park.

medium shot

The Witch’s Castle fills the background. Ellie, furtively glancing around, enters the frame from the left, sneaking toward the gate.

next medium shot

Ellie and the gate to the Witch’s Castle fill the panel. She kneels in front of the gate, using a dead branch to pry the gate open. We see her straining, and we can tell that she has made some progress in opening the gate.

over the shoulder shot
farther back

Our view comes from over the Morningsider’s shoulder. His silhouette takes up the right half of the panel, and the panel edge cuts off his right side so that we only see half of him. The fedora and a rucksack brimming with leafy twigs establishes for us that the silhouette belongs to the Morningsider.

In the background, we see Ellie’s leg sticking out of the gate.

MORNINGSIDER
Shit.
inside the cave

A full page shot shows Ellie standing in the cave. She has turned on the light bulb, and stands in front of the wall that reads “This Is Only Temporary”.

close up

An inset panel at the bottom right of the page shows us Ellie holding the digital camera in front of her to take a picture of the wall with the flash going off. Our perspective comes from right in front of her or in front and slightly to the side. Her torso fills this panel from the waist up. Her face has a look of wonder an excitement.

the journalism lab

Ellie sits at the computer, still in her cap and jacket. Her fingers type furiously. The man sits at one of the other desks now and looks over at Ellie.

MAN
Hey, you’re back. Did your “hot tip” pay off?
over the shoulder

We Ellie’s screen over her shoulder. The headline now reads “Wild Man in Morningside Park” and a picture of the inside of the cave with the words “This Is Only Temporary” replaces the picture of the turkey.

ELLIE
Yep.
end scene

This concludes Issue 1.

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4 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Chad on 08/07/2007 at 5:00 pm

    I love it! So, now the Morningsider has a pesky reporter haunting his steps. This is a classic type-scene in comics.

    I wait for more.

    Reply

  2. […] This Is Only Temporary […]

    Reply

  3. Posted by neworangutang on 08/11/2007 at 8:19 pm

    I would just like to thank you Rix, I love these comics, so many interesting possibilities to explore, so much thought provoking, yet so gripping as well, thank you.

    Reply

  4. Posted by Rix on 08/13/2007 at 8:47 am

    Thanks for the uplifting comments, guys!

    Reply

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