Sci-fi web comic. Page 22. Director’s commentary.

Today the title has been shortened from “sci-fi, CG, crime thriller, web comic laced liberally with design fiction overtones” to the title above. What other choice did I have?

Page 22

The scene in Sean’s lab continues. He has just authorized erasure of a select set of memories from Keiji-T, his ultra-sophisticated synthetic human. As we saw on pages 17 & 18 Keiji has been commissioned by the New Asia Police Hong Kong 2 division as a state-of-the-art detective. Keiji reports to work at Police Headquarters first thing in the morning, though Sean remarks that he will be sleeping a bit later than that. We can gather from page 20 that Sean has an appointment with the face on the screen, on page 20.

Design fiction diegetic prototypes

Aside from the design of the cascading visual interface that Sean uses to erase Keiji, and the other props that make up this scene, there are a couple bits of visual design fiction that happen on page 22, and in true form we do not obsess over them or really even call them to the foreground in any overt way. As true diegetic prototypes, they blend into the background, not particularly magical and part of everyday life (at least Sean’s everyday life.) This first is the way Sean makes his worktable and chair disappear while simultaneously enclosing his work in a transparent crypt. This will keep his work off limits to his lab assistants until he gets back. The second visual trick is not so obvious and you have to be paying attention. The difference is Sean’s bodysuit. Not that in p22, panel 3 Sean is wearing his grey, AHC uniform. In the final panel, the style has changed to a digital-camo look (very fashionable in 2159). How did he manage this, you ask? Thanks to programmable fabric and the commands from his luminous implants changing your clothes is virtually instantaneous. For more on luminous implants, see this post.

In the final scene, Sean exits through a huge , aperture-like vault door to the rear of the lab. It’s interesting how so many of these props are designed to be functioning elements but are seen only as a glimpse from a distance. This is a lot like a movie production where enormous amounts of detail are built into the sets since you never know where the camera will end up pointing or how close the director will decide to get to said prop. Alas, so much of it ends up as only a passing glimpse, part of the texture and context of another world.

Comments welcome. Cheers.

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