For a class assignment, I had to pitch an idea for one of five options:
Series of Commercials
I opted to do the graphic novel as I have had an idea kicking around for that for years, i just reworked some of the plot points. what follows is what I submitted. I present it to you for your enjoyment.
My idea is for a series of graphic novels to revolve around a cast of eccentric characters set to the background of the North Pole, specifically Santa’s workshop. The overall narrative would be to explore specific real world social tropes and issues contained within the confines of this fictitious world. The main cast would consist of ‘live’ teddy bears, elves and of course the big man Himself, Santa.
The project would consist of at least 3 graphic novels, focusing on the main character, Buddy Bear. The first book in the series will focus on him finding his way in the world and in the process, finding himself as well as finding love along the way. The second volume in the series will see him questioning everything he has accomplished and trying to find a way to get over a great loss. The third and final volume in the series will explore how far buddy has come and how he has accepted his role in life and in love.
What inspired your ORIGINAL project idea? Explain in at least 3 sentences - If you used any research, a citation needs to be listed below in the last question:
My original idea was inspired by Futurama, a television show created by Matt Groening. I was fascinated by the world he created with such fantastic concepts and situations and yet was still relatable to the audience; despite its reality being based so far from our own. I began to think of settings that were fantasy based and how I could make it more relatable to a common audience. I eventually got to Santa and his workshop and began to build my foundation from there. I’ve always had a soft spot for teddy bears so they immediately became the spotlight characters.
Describe one main character in at least 3 sentences (ie. protagonist, antagonist, mentor).
The main character is Buddy Bear. He’s a relatively young character in his early to mid 20’s at the start of the first book. He’s very smart and talented but doesn’t like to show It off. He feels like that alienates him from his peers. He craves attention and simply wants what all teddy bears want in life, to be loved.
Describe a second main character in at least 3 sentences (ie. protagonist, antagonist, mentor).
Santa is a secondary character who is mainly a mentor to all the characters in the North Pole as A) he created most of them and B) he is their boss. Santa is a conflicted character in that he is old and wise so he knows what should be done, however, due to some personal losses, he doesn’t always do the right thing, or will do the wrong thing for selfish reasons. Santa takes an interest in Buddy as he sees a lot of a younger version of himself in him. He sees the idealistic young man who was not yet tarnished by the world.
Describe the conflict or motivator within your story in at least 3 sentences.
The main conflict of the story will be that there is a ‘class war’ going on in the Work Shop. The elves consider themselves to be higher on the ladder as they came first and were charged with building the bears after Santa came up with the idea. The bears are considered second-class citizens but are beginning to rise up and claim themselves to be equal to the elves. The scenario is based on the civil rights movement of the 60’s wherein African Americans were free people but not considered equals in the eyes of many American citizens. Buddy will find himself as a reluctant leader in the fight for equal bear rights.
Research a project similar to yours. Write a brief ORIGINAL summary/synopsis of that project in at least 3 sentences. (Do not plagiarize from imdb.com, wikipedia or any other source) – Researched citation needs to be listed below
There is an older graphic novel called Maus, created by the superb writer/artist Art Speigelman. It is the autobiographical tale of his grandfather during his time as a Jew in a Nazi internment camp. The story is told through characterization of anthropomorphic animals (Jews are represented as mice, Nazi’s as cat’s and Americans as dogs). The similarities come in that I am recreating a version of history through the use of anthropomorphized animals with WWII being replaced by the Civil Rights movement.
(Editor’s note: I do not in fact that any material I create will ever be as successful or as well received as the peerless Maus or Art Spiegelman. But I had to answer the question for class)
Explain why you think your project may be more successful than the project listed above in at least 3 sentences.
My project may be more successful in that I will be able to reach a wider audience. Maus’ appeal came in that it was an autobiographical story meant to hit at the heart whereas my story focuses more on one character rising to the occasion but taking a more on broad strokes. There will be humor, sadness, action and romance, which will appeal on a wider scale. My project will also springboard into other mediums such as films, television and possibly even web series.
So there you have it folks. My idea for a graphic Novel. Let me know what you think in the comments below.