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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    One Week Challenge    The August Challenge  ›  August/September Character Discussion Moderators: Scar Tissue Films
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  Author    August/September Character Discussion  (currently 4129 views)
Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 7:02am Report to Moderator
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We've got a great skeleton together already (well done all!) which we'll now start expanding by developing the characters.

Making reference to the events established in the Chronology thread, write down some ideas for:

Necessary characters. Write down the characters that HAVE to be in the script. Eg Main Character, Scientist,  etc

Standard Characters. Write down the characters youï¿¿d EXPECT to be in the script. Eg Police Officer. Priest. Soldiers. Anyone in the local community etc

Unusual Characters. Write down characters that COULD be in the script, but it might be strange.  EG. Head of Nasa. Archbishop of Canterbury. Famous footballer/actor.

Outlandish characters. Write down characters that COULD NOT POSSIBLY be in the script.  Eg Sherlock Holmes, Cleopatra, Man on the Moon. John F. Kennedy.


The latter one might seem ridiculous, but there's method in the madness. While it's unlikely we'll use any of them literally, it can suggest unique characters and idiosyncrasies.

Such as the local Palm reader who thinks she's the reincarnation of an Egyptian Goddess.

Sherlock Holmes might become a super efficient Detective, or just an annoying local man who is an avid reader of those stories who thinks he can solve crimes and gets in the way of Police Investigations.

The Man in the Moon might suggest one of the characters has gone mad from the Fog and believes the Moon itself is talking to him.

It gives us very strange little beats that make minor characters more interesting to listen to and helps to distinguish them and make them feel more complete without having to spend a long time establishing them.

So, just pop down whatever/whoever comes into your head without thinking too much about it. The connections afterwards are very easy to create.






NOTE ON CHARACTERS:

There should be a good mix of people of differing gender, race, religion, ability and from different levels of society as the story events will effect everybody. I  think the UK is about 83% White altogether.

Davyhulme, where I'm thinking it should be set is probably about 90% White. Manchester itself is very mixed.


Potential Ideas for the Main Character:


Female. Town Councillor
Married to a Police Officer  (this gives them both access to resources, and a place at the centre of their community)
They have a teenage daughter who is blind.   A good stakes character and an excuse to describe things to her for the audience's sake.



'Madman'.


Under psychiatric care. We hear his sessions through recorded interviews with his Psychiatrist.
Goes even more insane due to inability to get his drugs anymore.

With the fog creating problems for everyone, his ideas slowly start to cause some kind of Mass Hysteria.

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Scar Tissue Films  -  August 26th, 2019, 7:28am
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Zack
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 7:24am Report to Moderator
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Ian Dunn, 20, a popular youtuber who specializes in critiquing classic black and white horror films, just finished his third year of college. Despite his interest in macabre stories and a dark sense of humor, Ian is actually very sweet. Almost to a fault. He's constantly putting others before him. Ian is actually the one who convinced David to go backpacking across Europe, thinking it would help get his mind off of his loss. He and David have been best friends since gradeschool.

David Clifton, 20, the man behind the camera on Ian's youtube channel, also just finished his third year of college. Shares Ian's love for classic horror films. A huge, intimidating Dude, David is actually just a big lovable teddy bear. A little immature, constantly pulling pranks on his friends and family.  Recently lost his fiance and highschool sweetheart, Jessica, to a tragic accident. Just wants forget about everything for a while. That's what the whole vacation is about. Just see the world.

Once the event happens, David and Ian become stranded in the small community. Ian stays cool and collected, even manages to update his youtube channel, but David slips into a further depression. As the days go on and the fog remains, David swears he is seeing and hearing things out there. He's certain he's heard Jessica's voice... And even claims to have seen her in the fog.

Kind of just spit-balling, but I figured I'd share.


MY RATING SYSTEM

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  -  4/5
  -  3/5
  -  2/5
  -  1/5
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 7:36am Report to Moderator
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Are you going to act out the dialogue for us?
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FrankM
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 7:48am Report to Moderator
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Though the madman's actions are fine, I think it's a bit cliche to have this be some mentally ill person off his meds. People regard the mentally ill as walking time bombs already without writers adding to it. It also makes the antagonist less relatable/sympathetic, which is something we'd like to have in a back pocket for Season Two.

Not sure of the best replacement for schizophrenia here... maybe someone "driven mad" by grief. Pre-Fog, this would be the guy who comes up with the best descriptions of cloud shapes.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 8:02am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from FrankM
Though the madman's actions are fine, I think it's a bit cliche to have this be some mentally ill person off his meds. People regard the mentally ill as walking time bombs already without writers adding to it. It also makes the antagonist less relatable/sympathetic, which is something we'd like to have in a back pocket for Season Two.

Not sure of the best replacement for schizophrenia here... maybe someone "driven mad" by grief. Pre-Fog, this would be the guy who comes up with the best descriptions of cloud shapes.


True.

I just really wanted to get the psychiatrist on there because they record audio.  

Maybe we can go the entire opposite route.

He's not mad, he's sane. A kind of intense rationality that's taken to extremes.
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FrankM
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 8:15am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


True.

I just really wanted to get the psychiatrist on there because they record audio.  

Maybe we can go the entire opposite route.

He's not mad, he's sane. A kind of intense rationality that's taken to extremes.


It might actually work better if the recording was not done by a psychological professional, so they only get "analyzed" in hindsight. Recorded job interview, news interview, supervised child visit, conversation in a bank line, etc.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 8:16am Report to Moderator
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OK, so the world is full of lies, fake news, conspiracy theories, people saying there are things in the fog.

He spends time staring at it, watching it swirl around everything, but sees it entirely for what it is.. Just a fog. But it also represents the truth to him. The grey mist to which the Universe must return. The Void which will devour life and humanity and all human ideas.

So he starts desiring to feed all the liars (which is anyone and everyone) to it.

I quite like that.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 8:17am Report to Moderator
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A character I haven't thought about before but would make sense in the current world : a YouTuber.

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Zack
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 8:33am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Are you going to act out the dialogue for us?


Well, I've got the equipment to record. But the acting talent to pull it off? Ha.


MY RATING SYSTEM

  -  5/5
  -  4/5
  -  3/5
  -  2/5
  -  1/5
  -  0/5
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FrankM
Posted: August 26th, 2019, 9:58am Report to Moderator
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One “unusual character” could be an actual schizophrenic trying to stretch out his/her meds. By the third episode or so they are seeing things, but this person is used to it, and actually has some measure of protection from the sensory deprivation affecting everyone else.

Some can find it comforting to have someone acting the same as they always have, even if they are nutty.


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ReneC
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For the madman, maybe he was normal before the fog, an average person with issues but no more than anyone else. The fog is going to make many people go nuts, let this guy be the extreme of that.

He shouldn't be totally off his rocker. If he's going to be a leader, he has to be rational. He has to be the hero of his own story. He's the only one who sees the truth, whatever that truth is, and the only one with the will to do what's necessary. Like Thanos or that photocopier salesman from The Postman, he has a vision the fog gave him and it's compelling enough that people will follow him (even if it's just a join the biggest gang, might makes right sort of way).

I don't think he should leave the community to go free the prisoners. He should have already left the community, either pushed out or left because they're all fools doomed to die, and when he learns of the prisoners he goes to free them. We don't even need to show that, the prison plight can be learned by our main characters and the...let's call him visionary shows up after that as an opportunist to sway the desperate prisoners to his cause.

I'll keep the character ideas as general for now until we narrow things down.

Necessary characters:
Agree that main should be female and a local official. A blind character can be a useful device but having it be her daughter might be an anchor.

Paramedic or other first responder
Military leader (mid- to high-level)
Scientist

Standard characters:
Survivalist
Police
Female CEO
Small business owner
Farmer
Helicopter pilot
Teacher
Psychiatrist or psychologist
Priest or nun
Meteorologist

Unusual characters:
Fisherman
Rising college football star
Heroine addict
Hardcore drunk
Tech billionaire
Accountant
Park ranger


Outlandish characters:
A member of the royal family
President of the United States
The Pope
African warlord
Jesus Christ
The Man in Black
Pennywise
Stephen King
Vladimir Putin
Ghosts
Zombies
Werewolves
Vampires
The Thing


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FrankM
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In my rough draft, all of those Outlandish Characters were written in straight


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ReneC
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Quoted from FrankM
In my rough draft, all of those Outlandish Characters were written in straight


I'm not surprised.  


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PKCardinal
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
A character I haven't thought about before but would make sense in Tyne current world : a YouTuber.


I was going to suggest that our American backpackers might be YouTubers... recording and transmitting their experience to the rest of the world. Starts off normal, then chaos... then, maybe cut off from their vital technology hit. Have to adjust to a life that doesn't value their only skill anymore.


PaulKWrites.com

60 Feet Under - Low budget, contained thriller/Feature
The Hand of God - Low budget, semi-contained thriller/Feature

Many shorts available for production: comedy, thriller, drama, light horror
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PKCardinal
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Side note: the more I read, the more I want Rene to write the first episode... and we try and follow his lead for the remaining 9.  


PaulKWrites.com

60 Feet Under - Low budget, contained thriller/Feature
The Hand of God - Low budget, semi-contained thriller/Feature

Many shorts available for production: comedy, thriller, drama, light horror
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khamanna
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A vet for a doctor who is a racist too and refuses to help people of different races. Let’s do - he is against Asians because he believes they went ahead at his school and became doctors/surgeons but he had ed. debt and could not.
So they struggle with him and make him help all. He could fall for an Asian patient later too unless it’s too cliche
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FrankM
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Quoted from khamanna
A vet for a doctor who is a racist too and refuses to help people of different races. Let’s do - he is against Asians because he believes they went ahead at his school and became doctors/surgeons but he had ed. debt and could not.
So they struggle with him and make him help all. He could fall for an Asian patient later too unless it’s too cliche


Outside of rural farming areas, any town big enough for a vet will have proper doctors as well. Of course, something unfortunate could happen to the doctors, so you end up with a psychiatrist, veterinarian, and a nephrology nurse (dialysis specialist) as the town's medical team.

Someone having a problem with a specific minority... or all of them... will be useful for storytelling.


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hawkeye
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Quoted from PKCardinal
Side note: the more I read, the more I want Rene to write the first episode... and we try and follow his lead for the remaining 9.  


Or have him write the first 9 and we could all take credit for a kick ass season finale!


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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ReneC
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Um...let's not get ahead of ourselves.  

No more character suggestions???


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hawkeye
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I would suggest that we have a couple of strong, smart powerful women in lead roles who aren’t dependent on men to save them or explain things to them because (a) it’s demeaning and stupid to do otherwise and (b) more and more women make up the podcast audience and will start bailing if you make the women weak and panicked at the first sign of the fog. Make them scientists and soldiers and politicians. Let them provide explanations and solutions.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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LC
Posted: August 27th, 2019, 12:34am Report to Moderator
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Good for you, Gary! I'm right with you. The only thing I might add is that any female character doesn't necessarily have to have a professional title or occupation to still possess those strong and capable qualities.

Tons of characters run around in my head...    

I like the idea of a shut-in character, perhaps an INFJ - a creative, smart but introverted character previously able to live and work from home, obtain everything online for their prior existence, now forced to join the human race.



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Dustin
Posted: August 27th, 2019, 3:28am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from hawkeye
I would suggest that we have a couple of strong, smart powerful women in lead roles who aren’t dependent on men to save them or explain things to them because (a) it’s demeaning and stupid to do otherwise and (b) more and more women make up the podcast audience and will start bailing if you make the women weak and panicked at the first sign of the fog. Make them scientists and soldiers and politicians. Let them provide explanations and solutions.


Did that really need to be said?

Any writer that isn't with this these days might as well forget about it.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from ReneC
For the madman, maybe he was normal before the fog, an average person with issues but no more than anyone else. The fog is going to make many people go nuts, let this guy be the extreme of that.

He shouldn't be totally off his rocker. If he's going to be a leader, he has to be rational. He has to be the hero of his own story. He's the only one who sees the truth, whatever that truth is, and the only one with the will to do what's necessary. Like Thanos or that photocopier salesman from The Postman, he has a vision the fog gave him and it's compelling enough that people will follow him (even if it's just a join the biggest gang, might makes right sort of way).

I don't think he should leave the community to go free the prisoners. He should have already left the community, either pushed out or left because they're all fools doomed to die, and when he learns of the prisoners he goes to free them. We don't even need to show that, the prison plight can be learned by our main characters and the...let's call him visionary shows up after that as an opportunist to sway the desperate prisoners to his cause.


Hi Rene,

Good post. I'll come back to your other suggestions in a bit. First I want to discuss the Madman. I think we're largely on the same page, just one slight difference:

The way the story seems to be developing, we're following a group in a small, suburban town (which makes sense in a lot of ways...not just story/Production wise, but also in the Demographics of the people who listen to Podcasts, I imagine).


It make sense that our "madman" lives in that area. So he's a part of the community, in the sense that a small town is a "Local Community". He's not necessarily playing an active role, or plays cards with other characters.

I actually think Libby might have stumbled on the Madman:

I like the idea of a shut-in character, perhaps an INFJ - a creative, smart but introverted character previously able to live and work from home, obtain everything online for their prior existence, now forced to join the human race.


Super intelligent, but socially isolated. He records his own journal everyday.

He's our POV for seeing the psychological effects of the Fog. He gives us an insight into what people are experiencing, probably just at the extremes.

This journal will give the Podcast a very unusual feel, underlying the events taking place. He's very smart, so he thinks about thinks on a deep level, but we see how those thoughts, while intelligent, are slowly twisting into something dangerous and creepy.

So, he lives in our Local Community...a few streets from our Main Characters, perhaps. But he's also apart from the community, socially.


I also think we've stumbled perfectly onto his Character Arc:

He's in his house when the Starving Diaspora from the City descends on the town.

Following his journal, we've already witnessed him descending into an unusual, and dark place.

He has come to see the Fog as an agent of change. Maybe nothing sent it or maybe The Nothing has sent it....but it's here, it's Absolutely Real, and it will do one thing, it will kill people. It will cleanse the Earth (similar to what you mentioned about the weak being killed off).

So it's not based on religious ideas, but simply something that's palpably true...there is an undeniable force at work that is here to eradicate and change.

Anyway, the invasion into his home, and his private world, is the moment where there's a definitive break made.

At first he's brushed aside by the invaders and suffers a minor head injury, but then something changes in him, a revelatory moment that the old world is dead (perhaps represented by his computer/work being knocked off a table by the invaders) and he clinically dispatches them in some way....maybe with something nasty like a Meat Hammer from the kitchen.

One of them, though gravely wounded, is still alive.

Here's where it gets nasty.

He drags him out into the garden, douses him in lighter fluid from his barbecue, then sets him on fire...and describes the process in his journal.

In his mind he has become a "Servant of the Fog" (that doesn't need to be explicit). By burning the man, he is sending his essence, through the smoke, into the Fog itself.

He can also notice, casually, that the man is little more than "Noisy Meat"...foreshadowing the onset of Cannibalism and showing how he's mentally distancing himself from his fellow man.


After the Invasion has ended. The surviving members of the local community do door to door checks. Paramedics etc

They find our man, bleeding from his minor injury, and seemingly in a state of shock due to his psychological state. They take him to the Hospital where are main characters are talking to the Doctor and the Nurses.

He overhears a conversation about how the Hospitals and Prisons have been abandoned. He takes it as a 'Sign' and leaves the Hospital and the Local Community, to set off on his Mission.

At the Prison itself, he will simply have to tell the Prisoners the truth..that they've been abandoned by the same State that imprisoned them like Rats in a cage has betrayed them and left them to die, and that together they can find food, and get their revenge.

He can deliver this message over the Prison Tannoy system if we like. A disturbing, unsettling address that is nevertheless completely true.

That way they already have self interest to essentially follow him...Hunger and Revenge. So it's fairly plausible and he doesn't need to be some super leader, there's just self interest at play, and a certain level of gratitude for releasing them.

That seems pretty perfect to me. The journal allows us to slowly and naturally develop and experience the Fog Mania first hand, and the antagonists Arc...and it all fits in perfectly with the other story-lines.
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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from PKCardinal


I was going to suggest that our American backpackers might be YouTubers... recording and transmitting their experience to the rest of the world. Starts off normal, then chaos... then, maybe cut off from their vital technology hit. Have to adjust to a life that doesn't value their only skill anymore.


This makes sense to me.

They could be amidst the large group of people who are leaving the City of Manchester, giving us a POV on all them and their experiences.
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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from FrankM
One “unusual character” could be an actual schizophrenic trying to stretch out his/her meds. By the third episode or so they are seeing things, but this person is used to it, and actually has some measure of protection from the sensory deprivation affecting everyone else.

Some can find it comforting to have someone acting the same as they always have, even if they are nutty.


Yes. I like it.

It's also gives a wider sense of the worsening drug shortage, and lets us know that there are other people in the same situation.
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Scar Tissue Films
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@Rene


"A blind character can be a useful device but having it be her daughter might be an anchor".


This seems a fair comment.


I have a mind a scene where our main group leaves the Hospital to search for one of the Hydroponic Communities.

I consider it crucial, because it will allow us to become tourists for a while as we venture through the fog and get to see the effect the situation is having on a wider scale.

Because they're passing through, we can see little snap shots of events...evidence of racism, religious mania, the growing collective hysteria...without having to have long story lines establishing it.

I imagine it being very interesting to listen to as well...the journey into the unknown.

I reckon the blind character would be useful there, so perhaps it's someone they pick up at the Hospital?

Libby...didn't you have ideas surrounding a blind person? What were you thinking?

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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from hawkeye
I would suggest that we have a couple of strong, smart powerful women in lead roles who aren’t dependent on men to save them or explain things to them because (a) it’s demeaning and stupid to do otherwise and (b) more and more women make up the podcast audience and will start bailing if you make the women weak and panicked at the first sign of the fog. Make them scientists and soldiers and politicians. Let them provide explanations and solutions.


Yes, essentially.

We'll keep it realistic, though. I don't want superhero type characters throwing grown men ten foot across the room, or whole 'mansplaining' scenes.

We'll have strong, competent women and men, and also vulnerable people.
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LC
Posted: August 27th, 2019, 5:39am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Frankie Forest
One “unusual character” could be an actual schizophrenic trying to stretch out his/her meds. By the third episode or so they are seeing things, but this person is used to it, and actually has some measure of protection from the sensory deprivation affecting everyone else.Some can find it comforting to have someone acting the same as they always have, even if they are nutty.



Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Yes. I like it.
It's also gives a wider sense of the worsening drug shortage, and lets us know that there are other people in the same situation.


I hate to rain on your parade but you'll want to exercise caution here. Re a character suffering schizophrenic episodes:

A sufferer of any mental illness does not get used to their symptoms - auditory or visual hallucinations or delusions are not fun. It's a scary illness. I'd stay away from Hollywood stereotypical portrayals of mental illness lest you offend or alienate some listeners.

The aspect of a character running out of meds they need to survive is a good story strand...


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Scar Tissue Films
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OK, some other characters to throw into the mix.


In the story, the Government are putting contingency plans into place...including rationing, and the development of Hydroponic communities.

They also try to use technological means to dispel the Fog...starting with climate control techniques, and culminating in a an attempt to burn it away that is catastrophic.

In the UK, the people in charge of these things would be the C.O.B.R.A committee.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2002/oct/21/Whitehall.uk

In this situation the people on the Committee would no doubt be numerous:

The Prime Minister would almost certainly Chair the meeting.
Fire service minister.
Police
Ministry of Defence.  
The Department of Transport
The Home Office Minister
Foreign Minister
UK security services: MI5 (internal affairs) MI6 (external affairs).


They'd probably be joined quite rapidly by:

Representatives from DEFRA (The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Climatologists discussing what the fog is and how to get rid of it.
Meteorologist. Probably disagrees with the Climatologist over something,
Someone representing the National Health Service to discuss physical effects of fog, increased likelihood of injury, and the psychological effects.


This is essentially a contained story within itself:

Starting with the Group convening and discussing the situation, moving through to the point they're taking strong action.


The skill required will be to humanise all the characters and create drama through disagreements.

Along the way the composition of the Committee will change as people die, resign, run away to hide, and eventually as Martial Law takes over and it becomes largely run by the Military.


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Quoted from LC




I hate to rain on your parade but you'll want to exercise caution here. Re a character suffering schizophrenic episodes:

A sufferer of any mental illness does not get used to their symptoms - auditory or visual hallucinations or delusions are not fun. It's a scary illness. I'd stay away from Hollywood stereotypical portrayals of mental illness lest you offend or alienate some listeners.

The aspect of a character running out of meds they need to survive is a good story strand...


Noted, Libby. We must always be careful with our representation of things.

Schizophrenia and other mental illnesses are a reality of our human lives, though.

And there is, of course, a spectrum of severity. Someone with milder symptoms, may be able to cope better than another, using self-help techniques and such.

As long as it's handled with sensitivity and realism, I don't think there's a problem.

It seems a natural extension of one of the core themes: Is there anything in the fog, or isn't there?


Quoted Text
Schizophrenia involves a range of problems with thinking, behaviour or emotions. Signs and symptoms may vary, but usually involve delusions, hallucinations or disorganized speech, and reflect an impaired ability to function.


Our sufferer has no real way of knowing whether what they're seeing is real or a result of their visual or auditory hallucinations...and neither does the audience.

But yes...we'll have to keep an eye on it.
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Both Priests and Scientists have cropped up as necessary characters.


I'm wondering whether we can do something unusual....


Have the Priest be an Atheist.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_atheism


And have the Scientist be a devout believer in God due to his belief in a God/Creator based on the latest Scientific developments...such as Fine Tuned Universe Theory, Hard Anthropic Principle etc


Something I've never seen before in any story either on paper, or on TV.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


Hi Rene,

Good post. I'll come back to your other suggestions in a bit. First I want to discuss the Madman. I think we're largely on the same page, just one slight difference:

The way the story seems to be developing, we're following a group in a small, suburban town (which makes sense in a lot of ways...not just story/Production wise, but also in the Demographics of the people who listen to Podcasts, I imagine).


It make sense that our "madman" lives in that area. So he's a part of the community, in the sense that a small town is a "Local Community". He's not necessarily playing an active role, or plays cards with other characters.

I actually think Libby might have stumbled on the Madman:

I like the idea of a shut-in character, perhaps an INFJ - a creative, smart but introverted character previously able to live and work from home, obtain everything online for their prior existence, now forced to join the human race.


Super intelligent, but socially isolated. He records his own journal everyday.

He's our POV for seeing the psychological effects of the Fog. He gives us an insight into what people are experiencing, probably just at the extremes.

This journal will give the Podcast a very unusual feel, underlying the events taking place. He's very smart, so he thinks about thinks on a deep level, but we see how those thoughts, while intelligent, are slowly twisting into something dangerous and creepy.

So, he lives in our Local Community...a few streets from our Main Characters, perhaps. But he's also apart from the community, socially.


I also think we've stumbled perfectly onto his Character Arc:

He's in his house when the Starving Diaspora from the City descends on the town.

Following his journal, we've already witnessed him descending into an unusual, and dark place.

He has come to see the Fog as an agent of change. Maybe nothing sent it or maybe The Nothing has sent it....but it's here, it's Absolutely Real, and it will do one thing, it will kill people. It will cleanse the Earth (similar to what you mentioned about the weak being killed off).

So it's not based on religious ideas, but simply something that's palpably true...there is an undeniable force at work that is here to eradicate and change.

Anyway, the invasion into his home, and his private world, is the moment where there's a definitive break made.

At first he's brushed aside by the invaders and suffers a minor head injury, but then something changes in him, a revelatory moment that the old world is dead (perhaps represented by his computer/work being knocked off a table by the invaders) and he clinically dispatches them in some way....maybe with something nasty like a Meat Hammer from the kitchen.

One of them, though gravely wounded, is still alive.

Here's where it gets nasty.

He drags him out into the garden, douses him in lighter fluid from his barbecue, then sets him on fire...and describes the process in his journal.

In his mind he has become a "Servant of the Fog" (that doesn't need to be explicit). By burning the man, he is sending his essence, through the smoke, into the Fog itself.

He can also notice, casually, that the man is little more than "Noisy Meat"...foreshadowing the onset of Cannibalism and showing how he's mentally distancing himself from his fellow man.


After the Invasion has ended. The surviving members of the local community do door to door checks. Paramedics etc

They find our man, bleeding from his minor injury, and seemingly in a state of shock due to his psychological state. They take him to the Hospital where are main characters are talking to the Doctor and the Nurses.

He overhears a conversation about how the Hospitals and Prisons have been abandoned. He takes it as a 'Sign' and leaves the Hospital and the Local Community, to set off on his Mission.

At the Prison itself, he will simply have to tell the Prisoners the truth..that they've been abandoned by the same State that imprisoned them like Rats in a cage has betrayed them and left them to die, and that together they can find food, and get their revenge.

He can deliver this message over the Prison Tannoy system if we like. A disturbing, unsettling address that is nevertheless completely true.

That way they already have self interest to essentially follow him...Hunger and Revenge. So it's fairly plausible and he doesn't need to be some super leader, there's just self interest at play, and a certain level of gratitude for releasing them.

That seems pretty perfect to me. The journal allows us to slowly and naturally develop and experience the Fog Mania first hand, and the antagonists Arc...and it all fits in perfectly with the other story-lines.


I love it.


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films



Our sufferer has no real way of knowing whether what they're seeing is real or a result of their visual or auditory hallucinations...and neither does the audience.

But yes...we'll have to keep an eye on it.


There's an easy trap to fall into here. We already withhold so much from the audience, and it's going to be hard enough describing everything without resorting to exposition upon exposition. If those descriptions become unreliable, it might turn the audience off. They won't like the wool being pulled so deliberately over their eyes.


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Here are a few characters I came up with:


  • Jane, 39:    Protagonist - Female, Royal Armoured Corps. Officer, mother, wife.
  • Barton, 52:    Antagonist - Male, Widower (lost entire family in a plane crash the morning of the fog), he wants everyone else to suffer as he did, the fog is a reflection of his own evil, uses religion as a weapon. He sees/hears his family in the fog and feels if he gives enough blood to the fog, he'll get his family back.

  • Secondary Characters:

  • Jack, 40:        Husband of Jane, town mayor, former police officer.
  • Michael, 15:        Son of Jane and Jack, leans toward the teachings of Barton.
  • Kayla, 7:        Daughter of Jane and Jack, is very close with her brother (Michael)

  • Aaron, 62:        Helicopter pilot (Mosquito XEL, amphibious small helicopter), American, followed the ship canal up to Davyhulme, he can follow rivers and power lines. 25 minutes out, 25 minutes back, 10 minutes reserve time on helicopter. He was selling the helicopter to a buyer in Manchester but he never showed up.

  • Walter, 42:        Davyhulme West Police Sergeant, has a grudge against Jack over something in their past from working on the police force together.  He has feelings for Jane.

  • Freddie, 22:        Local gang leader, piece of shit, drug addict, thief, hooligan, probably killed someone but he won't say for sure.

  • Andrew, 55:        Tratford council member, Leader of the Council.


Nothing carved on stone, and I'm not sure exactly how or where all of them will be used, but these are the few I came up with last night.


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Quoted from ReneC


There's an easy trap to fall into here. We already withhold so much from the audience, and it's going to be hard enough describing everything without resorting to exposition upon exposition. If those descriptions become unreliable, it might turn the audience off. They won't like the wool being pulled so deliberately over their eyes.


It'd only be the subjective POV of one minor character. You'd know he was schizophrenic, and you'd know that he can't trust his own perception, so I don't think it would be too much of a problem. I do understand your concerns though.

It's something I'm willing to let someone try as an experiment.

Was it Frank that suggested it? Perhaps we should let him present a small character arc for the character to see how, and where we could fit it in.

Part of me feels that despite the relative dangers, in a world like this where the whole environment is affecting mental health, it seems fitting that someone with mental health issues should be present in some small way.
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FrankM
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Quoted from ReneC


There's an easy trap to fall into here. We already withhold so much from the audience, and it's going to be hard enough describing everything without resorting to exposition upon exposition. If those descriptions become unreliable, it might turn the audience off. They won't like the wool being pulled so deliberately over their eyes.


Yes, a full-blown delusional scene would be a mistake, was thinking more along the lines of someone who sees something that isn’t there, and academically knows this, but the problem is that he/she really does perceive these things and would have to constantly be on guard.

If this person is dangerous off their meds, it falls into the same cliche I mentioned earlier.

Occasional comments about the butterflies or dancing lights or whatever would suffice. The subtler point is that this person is not subject to the same level of sensory deprivation as everyone else.

I was thinking that maybe the Rx has an alternate use, and he/she deliberately gives it up to someone who needs it for that other use. Might try to look up antipsychotics and see if something jumps out.

To complicate things, one of these two can be the minority that the doctor despises.


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Nice work, Jordan.


I like how you've introduced pre-existing conflicts between some of them, as well.


I'm going to pop out for a second and look at some of Rene's suggestions and your suggestions in greater detail and report back.
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FrankM
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


It'd only be the subjective POV of one minor character. You'd know he was schizophrenic, and you'd know that he can't trust his own perception, so I don't think it would be too much of a problem. I do understand your concerns though.

It's something I'm willing to let someone try as an experiment.

Was it Frank that suggested it? Perhaps we should let him present a small character arc for the character to see how, and where we could fit it in.

Part of me feels that despite the relative dangers, in a world like this where the whole environment is affecting mental health, it seems fitting that someone with mental health issues should be present in some small way.


Yeah, this guy is my fault

I’ll see if I can do some research on this despite some looming work deadlines.

No personal knowledge of schizophrenia, but have seen hypnosis and sleep deprivation distort people’s decision making.


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


It'd only be the subjective POV of one minor character. You'd know he was schizophrenic, and you'd know that he can't trust his own perception, so I don't think it would be too much of a problem. I do understand your concerns though.

It's something I'm willing to let someone try as an experiment.

Was it Frank that suggested it? Perhaps we should let him present a small character arc for the character to see how, and where we could fit it in.

Part of me feels that despite the relative dangers, in a world like this where the whole environment is affecting mental health, it seems fitting that someone with mental health issues should be present in some small way.


Fair point.

I had another thought. The fog presents some interesting opportunities for fear. Fear of heights? If the fog is thick, can't see how high you are. Agoraphobia? Fog feels like home. Claustrophobia? You're in for it when the fog closes in.

The deaf are in real trouble.

A seeing eye dog would be an excellent addition to the story, not necessarily for a blind person but as a supporting character, used to working with people and with better senses than us. And since it's a podcast it would be easy to add in. Imagine the dog barking at the fog and nobody knows why, or turning people away at the last second from a bad mis-step.

Depression is already going to be a major mental health issue for many, many people. There will be suicides. There will be breakdowns. Mental health is going to be represented, if there's a chronic issue added it has to be something important and relevant enough for a compelling arc that has some bearing on the story and isn't just there for the sake of it.


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Quoted from ReneC


Fair point.

I had another thought. The fog presents some interesting opportunities for fear. Fear of heights? If the fog is thick, can't see how high you are. Agoraphobia? Fog feels like home. Claustrophobia? You're in for it when the fog closes in.

The deaf are in real trouble.

A seeing eye dog would be an excellent addition to the story, not necessarily for a blind person but as a supporting character, used to working with people and with better senses than us. And since it's a podcast it would be easy to add in. Imagine the dog barking at the fog and nobody knows why, or turning people away at the last second from a bad mis-step.

Depression is already going to be a major mental health issue for many, many people. There will be suicides. There will be breakdowns. Mental health is going to be represented, if there's a chronic issue added it has to be something important and relevant enough for a compelling arc that has some bearing on the story and isn't just there for the sake of it.


Blind people should actually have an advantage in this type of situation.


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Quoted from ReneC


Fair point.

I had another thought. The fog presents some interesting opportunities for fear. Fear of heights? If the fog is thick, can't see how high you are. Agoraphobia? Fog feels like home. Claustrophobia? You're in for it when the fog closes in.

The deaf are in real trouble.

A seeing eye dog would be an excellent addition to the story, not necessarily for a blind person but as a supporting character, used to working with people and with better senses than us. And since it's a podcast it would be easy to add in. Imagine the dog barking at the fog and nobody knows why, or turning people away at the last second from a bad mis-step.

Depression is already going to be a major mental health issue for many, many people. There will be suicides. There will be breakdowns. Mental health is going to be represented, if there's a chronic issue added it has to be something important and relevant enough for a compelling arc that has some bearing on the story and isn't just there for the sake of it.


Wow. So many interesting storylines.

The suicide idea made me think that on their travels our main characters could hear some music, but (obviously) they can't see much. They travel towards it, the visibility clears a bit... And there's a field of hundreds of people who have killed themselves.  They put on a CD to die to, then took poison or something.

A quick, creepy interlude that shows how bad things are psychologically.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


The suicide idea made me think that on their travels our main characters could hear some music, but (obviously) they can't see much. They travel towards it, the visibility clears a bit... And there's a field of hundreds of people who have killed themselves.  They put on a CD to die to, then took poison or something.


They would hear the sound of crows, too.
Crows... Or other carrion birds.


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Quoted from Nomad


They would hear the sound of crows, too.
Crows... Or other carrion birds.


Definitely need crows somewhere. It's so effective.


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Quoted from Nomad


They would hear the sound of crows, too.
Crows... Or other carrion birds.


Nice. Ditch the music, just have the crows.

Love it.
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Nomad
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It's it too cliche to have the sounds of crows signify death?  
There need to be some leitmotifs that the audience can hook on to.

Crows=death
Wind through the trees=safety
Absolute silence=danger


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What’s the circa here? I’m not asking about the year, but this is to know how many years have passed since the fog landed? Are u going to start from the beginning or plunge your audience into the middle of how the things are “now”, then little by little explaining how this and that happened?
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One thing I would suggest with people going crazy with the fog is that it doesn't become "Birdbox", which was a bit silly and was never really explained in any detail.

Kham, my thought would be that we're not looking backward, but we're experiencing things as the characters are experiencing them.  Sort of a "War of the Worlds" type experience.


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Quoted from Nomad
It's it too cliche to have the sounds of crows signify death?  
There need to be some leitmotifs that the audience can hook on to.

Crows=death
Wind through the trees=safety
Absolute silence=danger


I think it's fine, as long as we don't over use it.

Why is wind through the trees safe, by the way?
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Quoted from Nomad
It's it too cliche to have the sounds of crows signify death?  
There need to be some leitmotifs that the audience can hook on to.

Crows=death
Wind through the trees=safety
Absolute silence=danger


Crows are carrion eaters, it's just natural. They don't always mean death, they can warn of bears or warn of bad weather coming. We see them so often around death because it's dramatic. It's great foreshadowing if we hear them before we see them too, it builds suspense.

Symbolism is powerful. We can't ignore it, but it's good to be aware of the tropes and the cliches.


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Quoted from khamanna
What’s the circa here? I’m not asking about the year, but this is to know how many years have passed since the fog landed? Are u going to start from the beginning or plunge your audience into the middle of how the things are “now”, then little by little explaining how this and that happened?


We're starting at the moment the fog appears and following it through, experiencing it as it happens.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

Why is wind through the trees safe, by the way?


1.  It's another side of nature that isn't causing people to lose their minds, or kill, or just in general to freak out.

2.  It's a sound.  

I don't know about you, but I have a difficult time feeling anything but relaxed
and safe when I hear the breeze whisper through the pine trees or hear the gentle creak of the trunk as it sways back and forth.

Winds of change, and all.


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Okay, here's something that just came to me.

Let's assume for now that the fog doesn't have any effect (yet) on telecommunications.  So television and radio stations can still communicate.  Satellites I think can still communicate will ground operations even in fog if I'm not mistaken.  This may, however be a condition so dense that it eventually breaks down communications.

But if not, then we can easily have our "narrators" in the form of radio and television stations broadcasting on a continuous loop reporting on developments as they come in.  People out in the suburbs, in the city, and from all over, can act as "reporters" using FaceTime or Skype on their phones or just by calling in to the station.  We're getting reports in live time from all over. Some are panicked.  Some are confused.  Maybe one of the news anchors suggests to someone calling in that they venture out into the fog and report on what they can see (or not see), and as that citizen goes out, we hear the phone crackling and breaking up and then just goes dead.  

Another scenario might be in a dilapidated home where the fog is actually seeping into the home itself, but instead of dissipating, it continues to linger and fill up the home.  The residents only option is to try and wait it out or try to escape.  They leave in their car, but we don't know what happens to them.

Soon soldiers, police, and other first responders are going out into the fog in biohazard suits.  Now what if one of them actually returns with no effects (at least not immediately)?  Maybe this is someone who descends into madness because he's actually seen something in the fog but couldn't access it -- perhaps the way the others who went in did?

Here is my thought on what the fog could lead to -- a portal into a new world.  Whether that world is better or worse is up to debate. Maybe we won't know until we explore it further.  But there's a myriad of stories that could be told there.


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Quick question regarding the jail release: What is our man's motivation for releasing the prisoners? Why does their predicament impact him so much that this loner is spurred into action?

Not saying he wouldn't do it. Just saying we need to know exactly why.

You mention he takes hearing the news of the prison as a sign. What's the specific connection in his mind?

I still think we need a hard reason (not spiritual), here are a few possibilities:

Possible reasons:

1. Disturbed by the nature of the attack on his house, he decides he needs a controllable clan to protect him. He thinks the prisoners are simpletons that he can manipulate.

2. An act of revenge. Again, spurred by the attack on his house, the prison is in the town from where the attack originated. It's his answer to their cruelty. He's unleashing hell on them.

3. He knows someone in the prison. Can't release one without releasing them all. This person obviously must be important to him. And, it opens up a storyline where he loses that person - which could play into a deteriorating mindset.

4. It's a return to his roots. Either he once was a prison guard... he's returning to where he last had control. Or, he once was a prisoner. He's returning to recapture his sense of freedom. By releasing the prisoners, he gains some sort of release himself.  (Those are both emotional needs, which I think would need to be connected to an overt need. For example, he needs help from an old friend.)


The act can still be spiritual... the fog has led him to this decision ("God/The Fog has a plan, and I'm part of it."), but the act needs to be grounded in a real human/emotional need.


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I like 3. Knows someone in the prison. Brother perhaps.

But I was simply thinking that  we'd  hear him explain it on tape.

He doesn't want anyone hiding away in their little places away from the Fog, hiding from reality etc

As long as we can make the reason seem important to him, it'll work.
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Quoted from PKCardinal
Quick question regarding the jail release: What is our man's motivation for releasing the prisoners? Why does their predicament impact him so much that this loner is spurred into action?


He needs to sacrifice more blood to the fog and the prisoners will help him do it.  

When he goes to the prison to recruit his army, he brings a gas can with him.  All of the prisoners are still locked in their cells.  He gives a convincing speech that sways most of the prisoners, but a really nasty prisoner gives him a hard time and says that the prisoners follow him only.

The madman calmly walks over with the gas can, douses the nasty guy, and sets him on fire.

"Does anyone else want to follow him?"

The madman has to be very smart if he's not physically able to handle himself.  He has to manipulate people to do his manual labor and physical protection.

He needs a dumb bodyguard.  Or we make him physically tough also.  

It might be easier to make him strong and smart. That would make him formidable.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from hawkeye
Okay, here's something that just came to me.

Let's assume for now that the fog doesn't have any effect (yet) on telecommunications.  So television and radio stations can still communicate.  Satellites I think can still communicate will ground operations even in fog if I'm not mistaken.  This may, however be a condition so dense that it eventually breaks down communications.

But if not, then we can easily have our "narrators" in the form of radio and television stations broadcasting on a continuous loop reporting on developments as they come in.  People out in the suburbs, in the city, and from all over, can act as "reporters" using FaceTime or Skype on their phones or just by calling in to the station.  We're getting reports in live time from all over. Some are panicked.  Some are confused.  Maybe one of the news anchors suggests to someone calling in that they venture out into the fog and report on what they can see (or not see), and as that citizen goes out, we hear the phone crackling and breaking up and then just goes dead.  

Another scenario might be in a dilapidated home where the fog is actually seeping into the home itself, but instead of dissipating, it continues to linger and fill up the home.  The residents only option is to try and wait it out or try to escape.  They leave in their car, but we don't know what happens to them.

Soon soldiers, police, and other first responders are going out into the fog in biohazard suits.  Now what if one of them actually returns with no effects (at least not immediately)?  Maybe this is someone who descends into madness because he's actually seen something in the fog but couldn't access it -- perhaps the way the others who went in did?

Here is my thought on what the fog could lead to -- a portal into a new world.  Whether that world is better or worse is up to debate. Maybe we won't know until we explore it further.  But there's a myriad of stories that could be told there.


I like your work, Gary.

You can feel the tension already. Some poor girl creeping out into the fog and describing everything they see. It's also a good way to introduce the town's minor characters.

I had an idea myself about a local radio station guy. Very nice man, but lonely. The sort of type you imagine doing the times when only those awake in the middle of the night tune in.

Anyway, he becomes a bit of a 'Voice of Hope'. He reassures people and plays nice music for them (it'd have to be indendent music).


I considered an arc for him where he slowly starts breaking down. Saying increasingly personal things about his life or whatever. He's still hopeful, but his optimism very gradually starts to fade.

Then I imagined he'd eventually kill himself live on air. After wishing everyone well. Over the top of his favourite record. And that would be the poignant end to one episode.

Anyway, maybe it could be the same guy.. A kind of local hub.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films



Then I imagined he'd eventually kill himself live on air. After wishing everyone well. Over the top of his favourite record. And that would be the poignant end to one episode.



Why does this feel familiar to me? I can't put my finger on it.

Somebody help me out. I feel like someone did that in a short here sometime recently. (Checking my files... did I write that sometime in the past? Nope.)

Ugh... I know I've seen it.

Hawkeye... did you do this?

Gonna drive me crazy until I figure it out.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Ha, funny.

I tried to Google it, to see if it was in a film.

Found this, which I thought was vaguely interesting.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gloomy_Sunday
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hawkeye
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Twas not me.  Although when I was in radio, I often thought about how that would be a ratings booster. but then quickly dismissed it when I realized it would be a one time thing.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Ha, funny.

I tried to Google it, to see if it was in a film.

Found this, which I thought was vaguely interesting.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gloomy_Sunday


Yikes! That sounds like the suicide field idea that someone proposed earlier... with the music playing.

About the radio idea... I'm certain it was on this site. A woman listening to her favorite DJ. He sounds like he's going to commit suicide on the air... or we're led to believe that... She calls in... talks to him. I can't remember exactly. Something about his wife dying. There was a twist... dangit... going CRAZY here as random details pop into my head. There might have been a Bible involved.

HELP!


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Zack
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Alright, so I took another stab at the two American backpackers I created. Tried to flesh them out a bit.

Ian Dunn, 20, a popular youtuber who specializes in critiquing classic black and white horror films, just finished his third year of college. Despite his interest in macabre stories and a dark sense of humor, Ian is actually very sweet. Almost to a fault. He's constantly putting others before him. Ian is actually the one who convinced David to go backpacking across Europe, thinking it would help get his mind off of his loss. He and David have been best friends since gradeschool.

David Clifton, 20, the man behind the camera on Ian's youtube channel, also just finished his third year of college. Shares Ian's love for classic horror films. A huge, intimidating Dude, David is actually just a big lovable teddy bear. A little immature, constantly pulling pranks on his friends and family.  Recently lost his fiance and highschool sweetheart, Jessica, to a tragic accident. Just wants forget about everything for a while. That's what the whole vacation is about. Just see the world.

Once the event happens, David and Ian become stranded in the small community. Ian stays cool and collected, even manages to update his youtube channel, but David slips into a further depression. As the days go on and the fog remains, David swears he is seeing and hearing things out there. He's certain he's heard Jessica's voice... And even claims to have seen her in the fog.

That's what I've got so far. Any thoughts?



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ReneC
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Quoted from Zack
Alright, so I took another stab at the two American backpackers I created. Tried to flesh them out a bit.

Ian Dunn, 20, a popular youtuber who specializes in critiquing classic black and white horror films, just finished his third year of college. Despite his interest in macabre stories and a dark sense of humor, Ian is actually very sweet. Almost to a fault. He's constantly putting others before him. Ian is actually the one who convinced David to go backpacking across Europe, thinking it would help get his mind off of his loss. He and David have been best friends since gradeschool.

David Clifton, 20, the man behind the camera on Ian's youtube channel, also just finished his third year of college. Shares Ian's love for classic horror films. A huge, intimidating Dude, David is actually just a big lovable teddy bear. A little immature, constantly pulling pranks on his friends and family.  Recently lost his fiance and highschool sweetheart, Jessica, to a tragic accident. Just wants forget about everything for a while. That's what the whole vacation is about. Just see the world.

Once the event happens, David and Ian become stranded in the small community. Ian stays cool and collected, even manages to update his youtube channel, but David slips into a further depression. As the days go on and the fog remains, David swears he is seeing and hearing things out there. He's certain he's heard Jessica's voice... And even claims to have seen her in the fog.

That's what I've got so far. Any thoughts?



I'd see that movie. How does it end?

For this, it's got plenty to offer. But really, it could easily be a feature about depression or a supernatural thriller or a straight thriller with the twist that Ian is actually responsible for the fiance's death and trying to hide it and David's subconscious is slowly clueing him in.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from Zack
Alright, so I took another stab at the two American backpackers I created. Tried to flesh them out a bit.

Ian Dunn, 20, a popular youtuber who specializes in critiquing classic black and white horror films, just finished his third year of college. Despite his interest in macabre stories and a dark sense of humor, Ian is actually very sweet. Almost to a fault. He's constantly putting others before him. Ian is actually the one who convinced David to go backpacking across Europe, thinking it would help get his mind off of his loss. He and David have been best friends since gradeschool.

David Clifton, 20, the man behind the camera on Ian's youtube channel, also just finished his third year of college. Shares Ian's love for classic horror films. A huge, intimidating Dude, David is actually just a big lovable teddy bear. A little immature, constantly pulling pranks on his friends and family.  Recently lost his fiance and highschool sweetheart, Jessica, to a tragic accident. Just wants forget about everything for a while. That's what the whole vacation is about. Just see the world.

Once the event happens, David and Ian become stranded in the small community. Ian stays cool and collected, even manages to update his youtube channel, but David slips into a further depression. As the days go on and the fog remains, David swears he is seeing and hearing things out there. He's certain he's heard Jessica's voice... And even claims to have seen her in the fog.

That's what I've got so far. Any thoughts?



I like it.

You can sort of picture someone seeing their lost love amidst all that fog.

Creepy and poignant.
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I don't know about anyone else, but it's all really starting to come alive for me.

I think we've done a tremendous amount in a short time.

The one thing is really like to get boxed off now is the main character.

Once we have that, it should be fairly easy (touch wood) to work out how we lead into all the other wonderful moments we've got.

I suggested a town female Town Councillor, and Rene agreed she should be an official of some kind. Nomad suggested a Soldier.

I really like the idea of one of the main family being a soldier, however I think making the main Pov a soldier will make the story too military based because of how much military stuff is going on.

So, I think we should make the daughter of the family a member of the Army. When the Government's contingency plans are enacted she has to leave to try to set up one of the hydroponic communities. Cue nice parting scene and worries about the future.

Later the family head to that same community and meet up with her, before the prisoners attack.

So what do people reckon the Main character should be?

I've changed my mind a bit about a Town Councillor.. I'm not sure what they do, and am wondering whether we'd have to spend too much time with her dealing with local problems.. Stuff that is not especially interesting or important to the story. The original thought was that it meant she'd know everyone around, so could be a kind of fulcrum, a way of introducing everyone in the area, but there's other ways we can do that.

Any ideas? Does it matter?

Can she just be a house wife?
A teacher? Schools close.. So she's just left to deal with the impending crisis.
A Police Officer?
CEO?
Pilot?

Other than surviving, does she play some other role?

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Journalist?
Psychiatrist?
Author?
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FrankM
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In the US, City Council Member of a town is not a full-time job. Often it's someone (1) practicing for higher office, (2) activist in some facet of local governance, or (3) a local business owner who may or may not be putting a thumb on the scale in zoning fights.


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A City Council member who happens to own a restaurant or warehouse would be in the middle of things, but not bogged down by details like a mayor or sheriff.

A City Council member who runs a trucking, delivery, or messenger company would have people in several towns and can serve as a clearinghouse for information about the surrounding communities.

A City Council member who's more of a busybody bent on government transparency would be pulling her hair out within hours.


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She's the lead.  She had to have some leadership skills, or at least amazing people skills.  A bartender comes to mind. Maybe a pub owner.

Why do people turn to her?
Why do people follow her?

Does she make some decisions early on that saves lives?
Do people look to her to keep them safe?

Maybe she WAS the town councillor, but quit to be with her family for some reason yet to be revealed.  
She wouldn't be running the day to day operations, but when the shit hit the fan, she wouldn't have to learn how to do everything.
People would know her, respect her, but she would also come with her fair share of haters.


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ReneC
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I keep thinking of police chief. It's used often but with good reason. She would be respected and looked up to, she would be on the front line of problems, and in an emergency her voice would outweigh a politician's. She wouldn't be bogged down in every crisis, she has deputies she can delegate to and respond to escalating events.

Having a daughter in the military is brilliant, excellent way to have that part of the story spin off from the central family and indeed touching.


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Quoted from FrankM
A City Council member who happens to own a restaurant or warehouse would be in the middle of things, but not bogged down by details like a mayor or sheriff.

A City Council member who runs a trucking, delivery, or messenger company would have people in several towns and can serve as a clearinghouse for information about the surrounding communities.

A City Council member who's more of a busybody bent on government transparency would be pulling her hair out within hours.


It' does make sense. I think we need to explore some other avenues to try and find the most interesting angle before we commit.

The overall story is circling around themes of truth, perception, what's real and unreal. The fog becomes a mirror of humanity. Rising above the fog, is a bit like an attempt to reach the truth.

There might be something in those sort of concepts that might be useful.

What sort of people are interested in truth?

Police, psychologist, philosopher?

Vicar?
Journalist.

Hmm. I'll sleep on it, and see what you guys come up with.
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It could be an industry town too. I thought about mining, but there isn't much active mining in England any more. It would be neat if the mine wasn't workable because of fog, instantly threatening the industry the town relies on for everything. The main could be a foreman or even the CEO of the industry, someone who wouldn't necessarily be a leader anywhere else but in this town they're hugely important for the town's livelihood.


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Problem with Police is all the procedural stuff, and reporting to her superiors and such. Or being sent to perform duties. None of it seems particularly important to our story.. The Police are more of a background thing.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Problem with Police is all the procedural stuff, and reporting to her superiors and such. Or being sent to perform duties. None of it seems particularly important to our story.. The Police are more of a background thing.


In a small town, there isn't much of that. But fair enough.

Maybe it shouldn't be someone who starts off in a position of authority. Maybe it's someone who rises to the occasion. Teacher, coach, search and rescue pilot, respected author, farmer, librarian, university dean, ship captain, retired park ranger...


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hawkeye
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What if she's a minister?  People come to ministers all the time searching for truth and guidance.

And when the fog starts to mess with everyone's minds, including hers, she's faced with a crisis of confidence in her faith.

This might lead into the other thing I had suggested earlier about whether the fog might be a portal to something else.  Or not.  That was just spitballing.

But as a minister, she also can be a central figure in the town that everyone knows and looks up to.  Or maybe she's a bit of a rebel in her teachings and so there is also a bit of animosity towards her from some townspeople.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

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Maybe a former mayor. Someone who knows the inner workings of the town and knows the history but isn't a part of the current chain of command. Someone who was well respected and would be listened to when the current regime starts to flounder.


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I'm kinda digging the "former" angle. Former Mayor. Now pub owner. Still in the center of it all, but not directly.

The town can lean on her, she can disagree with how the new mayor is handling things.

What if her pub also had rooms  for rent above the pub? Then she'd be interacting with outsiders as they filter through town. Could be useful for trading information/exposition dumping.


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PKCardinal
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Another way to play it would be that she's a pub owner, but everyone calls her "The Mayor" just because she's so dialed into the town's coming and goings.

She doesn't officially have the power, but everyone knows she's the most important person in town... the one who's buy off you need to get anything done.


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Rick,

I assume you're familiar with the Davyhulme, Urmston, Trafford area.
Is the Leader Of The Council in Trafford like a Mayor?

I say we have our main character be a former council member for Davyhulme West, who should have been the Leader Of The Council for Trafford, but some false accusations about the goings on at her pub, The Garricks Head, forced her to resign.

Day One:
In the bar we are introduced to the main character.
We see her mental cunning when she defuses a bar fight.
Just as the fight is defused there's a car CRASH outside.
People stampede past the front windows fleeing something.
A light fog rolls past the window.
"It's just a bit of fog."
A low RUMBLE noise as a thick fog blots out most of the sunlight.

Inside the bar are TVs that we can use to learn about the fog.
The American backpackers are sitting in the bar waiting to walk down to Chassen Road to catch the train to Manchester Airport to fly back home.

Someone comes in bleeding. There was an accident on the tracks. A driver couldn't see the road and drove his off a bridge onto the tracks and was destroyed by the train.  He's on his way to Trafford General but got lost in the fog.

The main character tells the regulars (good time to introduce some other characters) to go home and offers the backpackers a place to stay "until the fog clears" (Could be a running joke) and they can find a ride in to Manchester.

I like the idea of the pub being the unofficial town hall.  There are TVs for information, it's where people congregate, there's food, water, beer.  This specific pub actually has a hospital down the street, and a golf course directly across the street.  

I'm not sure how a golf course could come in to play. Maybe there's someone who knows the course blindfolded and can navigate it regardless of the fog. Maybe someone who works at Brookedge Nursery can be our horticulturist/farmer/hydroponic expert.

Well it's late now. My brain is fried. And the fog is rolling in...
DUN Dun dun!!!!
Ahhhhh!

-Jordan


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I wrote a long reply about the Pub idea, but it got lost in cyberspace.

Short and sweet version: Pub is a great idea as a place to start it. Can have a group of disparate people under the same roof, and others can later find it who are lost in the fog.

I considered other places where large groups could congregate, (hospital, supermarket, sports stadium, town Hall etc) but Pub seems ideal.
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In terms of our central character, I'm still not sure what she should be.

However, I did realise something.

The central story is essentially about "what is true" ?
We, as the audience, don't know what it is, what the truth behind it is.

We'll be presented with dozens of possibilities through the story by the different characters. People who think it's aliens, the Government, terrorists, an act of war, a supernatural occurrence, Biblical End Times, climate change, a purely random event etc

The central character should be a surrogate for the audience, stuck right in the middle of all that. She doesn't know what is happening, and can only listen and learn... She doesn't know who, or what to believe.

So whatever she is, it's best if she doesn't have any massively strong ideas about what it is, nor should she have any privileged access to information or to resources... Such as the very rich, or the head of the military.

She's in the middle of everything. Agnostic, average wealth, average job.

Like Rene mentioned, she can grow into a leadership role over time. So she doesn't need to be a civic leader, or former civic leader, just now.

There's something that puts me off the idea she runs/owns the pub as well, though I'm not sure exactly what. Whether it's the type of women I know who run bars, I'm not sure! Or because I don't want her to be stuck to the pub, for the sake of the story...not wanting to abandon it, or whatever.

So I feel she's in the pub, maybe for a glass of wine with a colleague, sister or friend after work. Or she's there to work... Maybe her latest book, or local newspaper report (but reporter feels like a bit of an overused trope).

Later on, husband wants to come for her, but she insists he stays with the younger son. So she has to make her way back herself through the fog.  Which shows her independence, and makes her vulnerable at the same.


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Quoted from ReneC
It could be an industry town too. I thought about mining, but there isn't much active mining in England any more. It would be neat if the mine wasn't workable because of fog, instantly threatening the industry the town relies on for everything. The main could be a foreman or even the CEO of the industry, someone who wouldn't necessarily be a leader anywhere else but in this town they're hugely important for the town's livelihood.


Mining town would have been interesting. All gone in England now.

I think we've settled on this place:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Davyhulme

Which is next to:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urmston

Some reasons: The canal runs from the centre of Manchester City centre all the way through to the Countryside...so when the Diaspora leaves the City they would head straight down the canal side as it's a straight line all the way to a place called Lymm, where the farming communities begin.

But the canal runs parallel to Urmston and Davyhulme, so some of them would travel into the town on their way.

It also has a Hospital (the first NHS Hospital) so it fits in nicely with our existing template.

By the by....one of the notable people listed in that Wiki is a close friend of mine..a musical artist called Jim Noir. He was round my house last week for a drink. He's extremely talented and I'm sure he can provide music for us. He releases Beach Boy inspired 60's style music, but he's capable of making anything.
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Quoted from ReneC


In a small town, there isn't much of that. But fair enough.

Maybe it shouldn't be someone who starts off in a position of authority. Maybe it's someone who rises to the occasion. Teacher, coach, search and rescue pilot, respected author, farmer, librarian, university dean, ship captain, retired park ranger...


Teacher, author, university dean and park ranger all sound interesting to me.

If she's a park ranger, she might have some useful survival skills like foraging for food. Knowing how to find animals, which fungi to eat.

Self help author/life-coach? Writes the kind of popular how to deal with various aspects of life that people buy on Amazon?

There'd be quite a nice irony in the fact she was an expert on sorting out the stresses of modern life...and now all the things she was good at are no longer relevant and she has to learn how to cope when reality bites.

That's pretty strong...her interior monologue is what everyone is having to cope with....a complete change in the way we have to live.

She can also record her thoughts about everything, which is something she used to do when writing her books.

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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from hawkeye
What if she's a minister?  People come to ministers all the time searching for truth and guidance.

And when the fog starts to mess with everyone's minds, including hers, she's faced with a crisis of confidence in her faith.

This might lead into the other thing I had suggested earlier about whether the fog might be a portal to something else.  Or not.  That was just spitballing.

But as a minister, she also can be a central figure in the town that everyone knows and looks up to.  Or maybe she's a bit of a rebel in her teachings and so there is also a bit of animosity towards her from some townspeople.


I thought about a minister/vicar. It will probably make the central story too theological though.

Probably best if that aspect is handled with a companion they pick up along the way.

As for the portal. It's a strong idea...it was what they did in Stephen King's the Mist, though. They'd opened a portal to another dimension and the creatures and fog came through.

It is something we can definitely bear in mind for future storylines. Or it can be something someone...either a conspiracy guy, or even a respected scientist could suggest as a cause in the short term.

I wondered whether in a future storyline whether the fog may have an epicentre as well. A place where it seems to have started and spread out from and that in another season (probably the last), the storyline would centre around them trying to reach the epicentre to see what's there...in some inaccessible place.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 8:30am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from PKCardinal
I'm kinda digging the "former" angle. Former Mayor. Now pub owner. Still in the center of it all, but not directly.

The town can lean on her, she can disagree with how the new mayor is handling things.

What if her pub also had rooms  for rent above the pub? Then she'd be interacting with outsiders as they filter through town. Could be useful for trading information/exposition dumping.


Not sure about her being a pub owner (for reasons I explained in the post above), but I'm liking the rooms upstairs idea so there can be a couple of very out of place characters.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 9:06am Report to Moderator
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I'll wait to hear back from everyone before we finalise things,but it feels like we're getting somewhere.

We've got the characters for the COBRA side of things, the sideline where we see what the Government are doing. We just need to give them genders, ages, ethnicities and develop their characters.

We've largely got the main, long-term antagonist. We need to supply his list of henchmen/psychos which he releases from Prison. The starting point for that might be Rene's list of outlandish characters.

The main timeline is slowly coming to fruition as well.

Main Character: Female,Age (old enough to have a daughter in the Army, young enough to be energetic). Occupation: Self-help author?????????
Husband: Town Councillor/Police Officer or  Former Police Officer/Former Town Coucillor?????    Maybe he's a little older than his wife, so he's competent, but he's not the action man he once was...
Daughter: Royal Armoured Corps
Son: Michael, 15: Rebellious. Attracted to some of the more extreme ideas. Long term, Leans toward the teachings of antagonist.

Story Opens in the Pub:

Characters Present?  (Taken from Rene's List and Jordan's List)

Teacher
Small business owner
psychologist
Hardcore drunk
Accountant

Freddie, 22: Local gang leader, piece of shit, drug addict, thief, hooligan, probably killed someone but he won't say for sure.
Freddie's friends.
Heroine addict...customer of Freddie?

These guys often sit outside the pub, and make themselves a nuisance, but not quite enough to have been banned.

Some out of towners staying in the rooms upstairs, as suggested by PK?
Family having a meal?
Young couple?

Later Arrivals from out of the Fog?

Walter, 42: Davyhulme West Police Sergeant, has a grudge against Main Characters Husband over something in their past from working on the police force together. He has feelings for Jane.
Priest????????
Accident Victim, covered in blood?
Someone unusually susceptible to the effects of the fog? Eg someone who suffers from Homichlophobia...a fear of fog and unnerves everyone.
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ReneC
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 10:06am Report to Moderator
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That all looks good. It's a strong start.

Is a self-help author going to be a believable central character? She has to have something else going for her. What ties does she have with the community other than simply living there and being the wife of someone?

It turns the central plot more towards the psychological aspects of the story, and while that's interesting, it's less dramatic. The psychology should be a strong B plot, not the main central plot.

She needs something that makes her relevant to the main plot. Maybe something from her past.


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hawkeye
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I’d at least make her a lawyer or business person that people look to for solutions to their problems.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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ReneC
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As a side note, maybe animals and birds should behave strangely in the fog. Birds migrating off course (suggests problem with magnetosphere), nocturnal animals out during the day, gentle animals behaving aggressively. Just more ways to turn our understanding of the world upside down.

One obstacle for a later episode can be a pack of now wild dogs.


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ReneC
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 10:49am Report to Moderator
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The crash victim could come from the M60 and report hundreds of vehicle collisions have completely blocked the highway. The same would be happening all over. That alone would tie up emergency services.


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JEStaats
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I missed a day in the forum, tried to catch up and realize that I've to say "Good luck and goodbye." I'm just unable to commit with everything else I've on my plate.

I look forward to hearing the podcast!
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ReneC
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

We've largely got the main, long-term antagonist. We need to supply his list of henchmen/psychos which he releases from Prison. The starting point for that might be Rene's list of outlandish characters.


So it's a mental institution for the criminally insane, not a prison. Because that's the only way I see my outlandish characters being used.  


Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


Someone unusually susceptible to the effects of the fog? Eg someone who suffers from Homichlophobia...a fear of fog and unnerves everyone.


Asthmatic would be unusually susceptible to the fog.


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Zack
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 11:57am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JEStaats
I missed a day in the forum, tried to catch up and realize that I've to say "Good luck and goodbye." I'm just unable to commit with everything else I've on my plate.

I look forward to hearing the podcast!


I unfortunately might be in the same boat. Just can't seem to stay caught up. Lol. Still really interested in seeing where this goes.

I've got a weeks vaction coming up on the 8th and I'm dedicating all of it to finally finishing my Goddamn first feature.   Until then, I'll keep thinking about this and will try to help out as much as I can. It's just such a cool idea. AND I really want to get some collaboration experience.  


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from ReneC
That all looks good. It's a strong start.

Is a self-help author going to be a believable central character? She has to have something else going for her. What ties does she have with the community other than simply living there and being the wife of someone?

It turns the central plot more towards the psychological aspects of the story, and while that's interesting, it's less dramatic. The psychology should be a strong B plot, not the main central plot.

She needs something that makes her relevant to the main plot. Maybe something from her past.


I don't really see it as A and B, more like both, with a different emphasis depending on what's happening at the time. At some points it's going to be all out action (like the invasion into the town) with no time to stop and think, other times it will be more introspective, with people talking about what's going on, individuals exploring their own thoughts etc

There's obviously a very strong psychological tone to it:

About being Lost in the Fog. Not knowing the truth. Being surrounded by untruth and trying to find your way out of the Mist.

Ideas about perception, what's true, what's not...how we can tell. All different ideologies and ideas that have to be evaluated by the people...

I think the podcast format really allows that to shine, with people being able to deliver their thoughts right to you.

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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 12:31pm Report to Moderator
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In terms of the Self Help author...which admittedly sounds a little lame....

I was thinking something like a Tony Robbins- lite character.

She's big on life skills. Micro-management of time. Work-life balance.

A wide layman's knowledge of finance, psychology and the types of things people need to be successful and happy.

The house is paid off. She's got a couple of rental properties in her portfolio. Shares that pay dividends.

The type of character that people would say "Has her shit together".

She looks the part and acts the part. Can hold an audience. People ask her for advice.

Like Gary says, she does courses for businesses.

She understands the way the world we live in works and how to negotiate it.

Of course underneath it, there are cracks, like there always are. Disagreements with her son, perhaps her husband isn't as ambitious as she wants, but she seems very much in charge of her life on the outside.


The thinking behind it was that she's all about control. Control of time, control of priorities, managing situations for positive benefits etc but that it's all tied to the way life is NOW.

Everything is about to go out of control. So she's got to learn a whole new set of skills.

It's a microcosm of the story. The collapse of our world and the things that are considered important and essential. And a birth into another world where different things are going to matter.

But she's got transferrable skills: She understands Maslow's Hierarchy, theories on how to manage difficult groups, these kind of things. A lot of it is purely theoretical, so now she has to distinguish the text book stuff from the reality in this new world.

There's an underlying psychology to it all as well. She's always tried to stay in control, because secretly she's really worried that everything is ready to fall into chaos at any point, and she wants to be prepared...so this reality is her worst nightmare come true.

I'm by no means wedded to the idea. It just struck me when you mentioned the successful author and it made sense to me.



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Scar Tissue Films
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@Rene

Good ideas for both the animals and the accident. I think wild packs of dogs are somewhere or other in the chronology.


EDIT: Nomad/Jordan has already dealt with the accident. He's put some thought into it. Very strange seeing someone discussing little old Davyhulme on here!


In terms of psychos. It's a bit of a balancing act as we want it to feel realistic and plausible, but if we write it well some truly insane antagonists might be interesting.

With the outlandish characters, you've got a few that can be amended to create some very frightening individuals.

The Thing...either the big, strong guy from the Fantastic Four as some bench pressing maniac like Charles Bronson. He can be the main antagonists strong man who keeps everyone in line. Bit cliché, needs work, but it's a trope that makes sense.

Or if it's the John Carpenter version, a group of people who have lost sense of their own identity in the fog and act and behave as a singular entity in some perverse way.

Vampire...maybe someone who was suffering from Renfield's syndrome...she actually she believes she's a vampire. Or she just really likes to drain people of blood to kill them.

The werewolf...someone whose behaviour changes during a full moon. It's all psychological, but he's more or less aggressive depending on the Moon cycle.

The Pope. A friend of mine used to be a psychiatric nurse and one of the people he looked after was a man who thought he was both the Devil and Jesus. On the days he was Jesus, he would try to kill himself, so that he could get rid of the Devil. He could be suffering from similar a religious mania. Or he could literally want to make himself the Pope of his own crazy religion after the world's fallen apart.


It's a balancing act, we don't want to make it really stupid, but if we make it subtle we can give them all interesting nuances to differentiate them, and the way they talk, and make them totally unique. That's the thing with the outlandish characters, what at first seems completely ridiculous can be refined into something really unique.

The overall point in regarding the theme of the story:

In our present world we recognise certain things as abnormal. Violent personality disorders. Manias. Etc  we give them labels and diagnoses. In the new world there's no one left to keep them sedated, or to tell them their ideas are wrong. They are free to live up to them without anyone stopping them. Whatever is going on in their heads...like Dogs talking to the Son of Sam...there's no one left to say it's not true, or to stop them listening....This aspect of humanity which we lock away and medicate is free here.

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FrankM
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Wow, I step away for a moment (because I have, like, this day job thing going on) and there's another page of comments...

I like the self-help author as expert in how things used to work... though I don't know how general or specific these gurus tend to be. She'd be unaffected by some of the things breaking down around her... she doesn't have mortgage or car payments to make, she gets up at the same time every morning whether it's bright outside or not, she had a disaster kit with food and cash prepared, etc.

But she's not some survivalist with 12 months of iron rations in a bunker... she needs to make do in the world rather than hide from it. Her making do will help a lot of others along the way.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 1:08pm Report to Moderator
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P.S

One of your characters was a fisherman: We never discussed fishing. That's a decent source of food unless something can prevent it. A lot of people would head to the coast.

It will probably need to be mentioned as to why our gang don't attempt it, if nothing else...eg they have no idea how to get a boat, or don't know how to fish.
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Matthew Taylor
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Fish wouldn't last long without sunlight. Phytoplankton and algae need sunlight, they are bottom of the food chain, without them the rest will tumble


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from FrankM
Wow, I step away for a moment (because I have, like, this day job thing going on) and there's another page of comments...

I like the self-help author as expert in how things used to work... though I don't know how general or specific these gurus tend to be. She'd be unaffected by some of the things breaking down around her... she doesn't have mortgage or car payments to make, she gets up at the same time every morning whether it's bright outside or not, she had a disaster kit with food and cash prepared, etc.

But she's not some survivalist with 12 months of iron rations in a bunker... she needs to make do in the world rather than hide from it. Her making do will help a lot of others along the way.


Yes, along those lines.

I can slow everything down, if people want. I've just been trying to reply to everyone as quickly as possible due to the difference in time zones and what have you.
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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Fish wouldn't last long without sunlight. Phytoplankton and algae need sunlight, they are bottom of the food chain, without them the rest will tumble


Good to know.
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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from JEStaats
I missed a day in the forum, tried to catch up and realize that I've to say "Good luck and goodbye." I'm just unable to commit with everything else I've on my plate.

I look forward to hearing the podcast!


Be sad to lose you, feel free to pop in at any time.  
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 1:48pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Zack


I unfortunately might be in the same boat. Just can't seem to stay caught up. Lol. Still really interested in seeing where this goes.

I've got a weeks vaction coming up on the 8th and I'm dedicating all of it to finally finishing my Goddamn first feature.   Until then, I'll keep thinking about this and will try to help out as much as I can. It's just such a cool idea. AND I really want to get some collaboration experience.  


You can't go, Zack. You're not allowed.
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FrankM
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If we want to have the schizophrenic patient, seems like a LOT of the potential treatments have off-label uses that I'd be hard-pressed to find. Anyone who happens to know something interesting, please share.

Of common antipsychotics with on-label alternate uses, the choice seems to be chlorpromazine which is also used to treat tetanus, chronic hiccups, the manic end of bipolar disorder, a blood disorder called acute porphyria, and explosive behavior in children from psychosis/Tourettes/autism/etc. The injectable version is better known as Thorazine, but it'd probably work better story-wise if we're dealing with bottles of pills.

Our patient would have been ramped up to about 75mg per day until hallucinations stopped, the eased down to a maintenance dose of around 30mg per day (three 10mg tablets). I don't know how many pills the NHS would let him have on-hand, and he'd probably get a decent fraction of whatever the pharmacy had in stock before it eventually shuts down.

Patients are warned not to discontinue this medicine suddenly, which would be why the character is trying to stretch things out rather than taking normal doses until they run out. Patients are also told to not crush the pills (apparently they are slow-release), so splitting pills in an attempt to stretch supply may cause issues.

Initial treatment for an adult needing any of the alternate uses would be up around that 75mg per day rate, or two and half days's worth of maintenance per day of acute care. At the stretched-out rate, an acute treatment might use up a week's worth.

It has the usual laundry list of potential side effects of little dramatic value, though "false-positive pregnancy tests" might be a little interesting depending on who's taking the maintenance and acute doses.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 2:06pm Report to Moderator
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Good info, Frank.

Do you have any ideas for his character arc?

Seems like a character we want to 'win', in some way.
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Zack
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 2:14pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


You can't go, Zack. You're not allowed.


You've got me until the 8th.

Have we decided who will be writing the first episode? Will the first season be a linear story, or will we be doing a bunch of stand alone episodes that tie in with one another?


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: August 28th, 2019, 2:23pm Report to Moderator
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The way it's developed I think it's largely going to be a linear story.At least in terms of time frame. With one main Pov, but  multiple POVs from side characters.

Until we've started planning the first episode, I don't  think we'll really know the exact form it'll take.

Nobody is down to write anything yet. We'll worry about that later.
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FrankM
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Good info, Frank.

Do you have any ideas for his character arc?

Seems like a character we want to 'win', in some way.


Wanted to have some notion of what the alternate uses were before trying to fit this person into the chronology. The easiest to explain to an audience would be Tetanus, which can easily be a part of just about any accident.

A Tetanus shot provides reliable protection for only five years or so. Quite a few adults, especially ones who aren't parents and aren't used to working around hand-tools, would be vulnerable.

Whoever contracts Tetanus should be someone the doctor (or vet or nurse or whatever the town actually has) doesn't feel deserves the treatment and therefore doesn't even suggest chlorpromazine. Could be either someone so injured they're unlikely to recover, or the minority that Kham suggested might get less-than-sympathetic treatment.

It could also be flipped... the schizophrenic could be the minority, and the medical professional effectively steals the pills to treat the Tetanus patient instead. This can be done by proxy simply by mentioning the option to someone in authority (or the public at large to create social pressure).

The first option allows for fairly straightforward selfless behavior that doesn't require multiple tie-ins with the main storyline. The second option requires some point further down the line where the medical person and/or the proxy gets helped out by the schizophrenic.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from FrankM


Wanted to have some notion of what the alternate uses were before trying to fit this person into the chronology. The easiest to explain to an audience would be Tetanus, which can easily be a part of just about any accident.

A Tetanus shot provides reliable protection for only five years or so. Quite a few adults, especially ones who aren't parents and aren't used to working around hand-tools, would be vulnerable.

Whoever contracts Tetanus should be someone the doctor (or vet or nurse or whatever the town actually has) doesn't feel deserves the treatment and therefore doesn't even suggest chlorpromazine. Could be either someone so injured they're unlikely to recover, or the minority that Kham suggested might get less-than-sympathetic treatment.

It could also be flipped... the schizophrenic could be the minority, and the medical professional effectively steals the pills to treat the Tetanus patient instead. This can be done by proxy simply by mentioning the option to someone in authority (or the public at large to create social pressure).

The first option allows for fairly straightforward selfless behavior that doesn't require multiple tie-ins with the main storyline. The second option requires some point further down the line where the medical person and/or the proxy gets helped out by the schizophrenic.


Interesting stuff.

Definitely seems like worthwhile story thread.
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The main character should be a girl's lacrosse coach at the local secondary school.

She would be a person of authority, know how to lead, know how to deal with conflict, be able to get people to work together. She would be involved in the community.

If her daughter is in the Royal Armoured Corps then the main character would need to be about 41 years old, with a 19 year old daughter.

That will make her wise and still able to move without needing a walker.

A daughter who is in the Armoured Corps would also be a strong woman, who should naturally be raised by a strong woman.

-Jordan


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Scar Tissue Films
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We've got a hell of a lot of suggestions for the main character!

Pub landlord. Known as the Mayor.
Town councillor
Police chief/officer
Life coach
Lacrosse coach etc

We really need to think this one through.

If she owns the pub, I was worried she'd be  stuck there until it gets overrun and they have to leave. Which is a bit limiting.

But, the good thing about the pub is we could do it so that we follow different characters as they leave the pub. So we've met them, know who they are and follow their little story as they leave and end up where they end up. Then cut back to the pub.

Another problem :If she's just in the pub does she go off home and if so how do we cut back to the pub and the characters we've just met? And if she's not anyone with official duties, then what can she do other than stay at home?

OK. I think I've made some wrong turns here. She does need official duties after all.

I think the pub is great. It's a great hub for a lot of activity but I don't want her trapped there.

My shout is that the husband runs the pub. She is a Police Officer like Rene said. A nice, strong woman like Jordan suggested we need.

That means she's having to move around, seeing what's going on in the community.

Meanwhile there's a centralised hub at the pub where we meet a gang of local people and receive world events and news through people's phone calls.

Best of both worlds.
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Nomad
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Alright, Rick.  

You're driving the bus.

Set it in stone.  
And by "stone" I mean something malleable and easy to change.  This is writing, after all.

Let's move on to our next issue... Which is...?


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Scar Tissue Films
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Let's keep it simple for now :

Flesh out some of the characters that are in the pub.

The teacher can be your lacrosse teacher, if you like.
Or some annoying know it all, that thinks he knows better than everything that's on the news.

What's the deal with the hardcore drunk?

Etc
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Scar Tissue Films
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This was the list, so far.

Teacher
Small business owner
psychologist
Hardcore drunk
Accountant

Freddie, 22: Local gang leader, piece of shit, drug addict, thief, hooligan, probably killed someone but he won't say for sure.
Freddie's friends.
Heroine addict...customer of Freddie?

These guys often sit outside the pub, and make themselves a nuisance, but not quite enough to have been banned.

Some out of towners staying in the rooms upstairs, as suggested by PK?
The American youtubers.
Family having a meal?
Young couple?

Later Arrivals from out of the Fog?

Walter, 42: Davyhulme West Police Sergeant, has a grudge against Main Characters Husband over something in their past from working on the police force together. He has feelings for Jane.
Priest????????
Accident Victim, covered in blood?
Someone unusually susceptible to the psychological effects of the fog? Eg someone who suffers from Homichlophobia...a fear of fog... and unnerves everyone???
Someone unusually susceptible to the physical effects of the fog : An asthmatic??



It also occurs to me our madman could be there, enjoying a meal on his own, so we can introduce him straight away... But I'll leave that open to suggestions. There is probably a more interesting way to introduce him.
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Nomad
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I think the teacher needs to be science oriented to explain some basics to the audience.

The annoying know-it-all can be the audience with all their questions about how our story world works.  This person could also be the hardcore drunk.

I don't like disposable characters, so they need to have another purpose other than world building.

Tonight I'll take a look at the chronology and see where they can fit in later in the story.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Cool.

The list is by no means exhaustive, so if anyone occurs to you, throw them in.

A lot of them will get seriously hurt or killed when thousands of starving people invade from the cities. We'll see some of them trying to build barricades to defend the town.

Some can follow our main guys to the community later.

The gang are going to come back into it somewhere, for sure.

It could be a good place to introduce an old guy who needs meds.. Maybe a diabetes sufferer, who will die tragically later on. Or even a kid.

The chronology was just intended as a time frame of fog related events, rather than a list of scenes or story beats, so you can invent/add story beats for them as you see fit.
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PKCardinal
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Every pub has their blowhards. The person/group that has all the simple solutions to every complex problem. "If they'd just do [insert inane solution here] then [complex issue] wouldn't be a problem."

A character like that could be a clearinghouse for us to run all the obvious solutions through. "Gee, Frank. Don't you think someone's tried that?" or "Great idea, Frank. Let's just nuke the whole world. That way we can all die of radiation poisoning instead."

Not a main character, for sure. That'd get real old, real fast.

Maybe a group of old farts in the corner. Though, it's harder to handle too many characters with only audio. Could get too confusing for the listener.

Great thing about a pub, is we can run just about anybody through there. If we do the radio station thing at all, they can even send a reporter there for "man on the street" type interviews.

Heck, even the minister's gonna need a drink as this thing gets ugly.

What about somebody who just doesn't care? It's just fog. Sits in the corner reading a book all the time. "You live. You love. You die. The rest is just details. This fog -- it's a detail."

Maybe a local farmer. He'll be one of the first to panic. His livelyhood is immediately threatened.


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Do British pubs have pool tables?

(If I do any writing, someone is definitely going to have to put the "British" into it. I know absolutely nothing about British culture.)


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Yes, they do. And darts.
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Darts... of course.

In the U.S., it's kind of a cliche to have the rough and tumbles always at the pool table. I see you have them hanging outside.


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They do play pool as well. Usually very loudly.
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In the actual pub, the Garricks Head, there tends to be a gang of drinkers near the bar. Mostly middle aged.

More affluent people sat eating and drinking on the left side and then rougher workers, and rougher people in the vault on the right side. The layout is open, but there's an unofficial divide.

Probably not worth mentioning, but just laying the scene.
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Everyone is going to have their own theory about the fog at one point or another. We don't need a Neil deGrass Tyson character per se, but one person who has the most plausible explanation and is soon proven completely wrong will unsettle everyone, including the audience. That's good stuff.


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Melvin O'Donnell, 54, bus driver, divorced. A regular, someone who knows the city well and knows people along his route.

Barbara Pierce, 50, Melvin's ex-wife, comes looking for him when she can't get a hold of their 20 year old son Rupert soon after the fog hits.

George Prescott, 26, recently geology graduate, is on a date with Kim Libby, 25, American on a work visa. George is soon heading to Cornwall to work in the re-opening tin mine. His grandfather was a miner, but George will be working in a lab.


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Quoted from ReneC
Everyone is going to have their own theory about the fog at one point or another. We don't need a Neil deGrass Tyson character per se, but one person who has the most plausible explanation and is soon proven completely wrong will unsettle everyone, including the audience. That's good stuff.


That’s where I think we can utilize the Telly or radio — the tv is on in the pub and it still works for now. And an expert is brought on who gives some heavy stuff that shakes everyone to the core.  And maybe the communications systems slowly start to go out and people now start coming up with their own theories, which panics people even more.  People gravitate to the people they find plausible. Camps are formed. Alliances are made and enemies are created. Social norms start to break down. The natural leaders try to bring calm to the situation but it may be a losing battle.

The military is called out, but even they can’t control the chaos as they don’t even know what they’re trying to control. They can’t see anything, they can’t fight what they can’t see and so they eventually give up, especially when they start to have physical and psychological trauma.  There is talk that there is an area over Spain and Africa, and plans are made to try and get there.

One of the pub regulars is a pilot, and he volunteers, reluctantly, to go up in his small plane to see if there is a ceiling to this fog.  He takes off, but within a minute or so, he comes crashing down back to earth. They rush to the crash and the pilot’s last words are something mysterious, like “It’s so beautiful” or some made up word that keeps everyone guessing.

Just some thoughts off the top of my head.


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ReneC
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Quoted from hawkeye


That’s where I think we can utilize the Telly or radio — the tv is on in the pub and it still works for now. And an expert is brought on who gives some heavy stuff that shakes everyone to the core.  And maybe the communications systems slowly start to go out and people now start coming up with their own theories, which panics people even more.  People gravitate to the people they find plausible. Camps are formed. Alliances are made and enemies are created. Social norms start to break down. The natural leaders try to bring calm to the situation but it may be a losing battle.

The military is called out, but even they can’t control the chaos as they don’t even know what they’re trying to control. They can’t see anything, they can’t fight what they can’t see and so they eventually give up, especially when they start to have physical and psychological trauma.  There is talk that there is an area over Spain and Africa, and plans are made to try and get there.

One of the pub regulars is a pilot, and he volunteers, reluctantly, to go up in his small plane to see if there is a ceiling to this fog.  He takes off, but within a minute or so, he comes crashing down back to earth. They rush to the crash and the pilot’s last words are something mysterious, like “It’s so beautiful” or some made up word that keeps everyone guessing.

Just some thoughts off the top of my head.


That's good.


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I like the idea of news sources slowly disappearing.  It builds tension.

I also like the idea of the pilot saying his last words.  It shouldn't be "My God. It's full of stars.", but something that we can use later on.

Great ideas.


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I think the Pilots final words should be less hopeful, more ominous. Maybe something like - "The fog... It doesn't end... It never ends..."


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Quoted from Zack
I think the Pilots final words should be less hopeful, more ominous. Maybe something like - "The fog... It doesn't end... It never ends..."


oooh, interesting.  that could work too.


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Quoted from Zack
I think the Pilots final words should be less hopeful, more ominous. Maybe something like - "The fog... It doesn't end... It never ends..."


The thing is that solid cloud cover reaching for hundreds of miles is a fairly routine sight in European skies. Kinda makes me wonder how astronomers of the Renaissance accomplished anything.


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Anyone made any progress with fleshing out some of the characters in the pub?

I had a little stab at starting a couple:

Small business owner.

Perhaps the woman I developed before as a potential main character. Lifestyle guru/Business consultant. Control freak. Haughty. Aggressive. Slowly goes insane.

Psychologist.

Very adamant that the effects of the fog are all Psychological. But is having doubts about their own state of mind.

Hardcore drunk.

Lost his wife tragically some years before. He's one of the people that becomes affected by the fog. Starts to imagine that his wife is in the fog. Goes off the look for her.

Accountant.

Extremely Right Wing viewpoints, both socially and financially. Thinks lefties are all communists and layabouts.
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I started to develop the COBRA gang, as well.

The Prime Minister.

Eton Educated. 53. Highly privileged. On the Socially Liberal end of conservative. Weak willed and not emotionally prepared for the role he needs to play, the stress is too much for him. He finds it increasingly difficult to focus on the reality of the situation.

Fire service minister.  

A State educated, competent woman from Birmingham. Strict in manner. Requests more and more money as fire service becomes more important. Disappears.

Police.

Female. From London. Socially Liberal Commissioner. Baulks at the requirements of the job as crime rises. Trapped in ways of thinking that are no longer relevant.

Minister of Defence.

Extremely competent. Hard-line. Is aware of the danger we're facing and the steps that will become inevitable. Has arguments with all the Politicians as he doesn't believe they are understanding the situation, or responding to it quickly enough. Comes to a quick realisation that he wants Martial Law declred and that he must take control.

The Department of Transport. Shambles of a man. Defers quickly to the Military. Disappears from the cabinet.

The Home Office Minister.

West Indian Female. Hardline. Believes in the Death Penalty. Longer sentences. Strict authoritarian and has  little empathy for people who choose a life of crime. Agrees with MOD. Suggests internment camps for prisoners, criminals and is the first Politician to push for Martial Law. She takes control of the Cabinet as the Prime Minister descends into depression.


Foreign Minister.

Anglo- Indian. She keeps the Cabinet up to date on Foreign Affairs. Stresses the likelihood of war, the effect on trade, medicines and such from foreign countries.

UK security services:

MI5 (internal affairs).  

Discusses the risks of domestic terrorism. Likelihood that the incident is terror related. Becomes increasingly paranoid and sees threats everywhere. In the fog, and in the Cabinet.

MI6 (external affairs).

Requests funding to explore whether it is an attack from a foreign power. Current information suggests that all Governments are blaming everyone else and no infirmation that there is any particular active agent behind the fog. Reports that borders are now essentially unprotectable. Warns that due to confusion and limited visibiltiy, Governments may act aggressively. Threat of Nuclear War.


DEFRA (The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs).
She keeps us uptodate on the food shortages and the effect of farmers. Has a long standign dislike of the Prime Minister.

Climatologist. Female. Afro-Caribbean.

Very Left Wing. Discusses what the fog is and how to get rid of it. Oxford educated. highly intelligent. Had a former relationship with the Meteorologist who she now vehemently dislikes. They disagree about nearly everything; from Climate change to the current situation. Believes the current situation must be related to climate change and man's actions.

Meteorologist. Oxford educated. Believes the cause is yet to be known, that people must not jump to conclusions based on their own agendas. Requests funding to head a research team to thoroughly investigate the composition of the fog.

Health Minister: Anglo-Pakistani. Representing the National Health Service to discuss physical effects of fog, increased likelihood of injury, and the psychological effects.
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We'll take it pretty easy tonight, I think.

Give people a bit more time to work on the characters in the Pub.


Once we've got a decent gang together with some ideas for where the conflicts lie, and the direction they're going to take, we'll give our main character some depth.

After that we can start plotting the first episode.
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I started padding out the main character's a bit seeming as it's gone quiet.


Please feel  free to suggest any additions, amendments.



Main Character: Jane, Female (44). Police Officer.

Religious views: Agnostic.
Political views: Centrist.
World View is modern/secular. Rooted in mass culture.
Has a secret passion for something unusual for a Police Officer.

As a Police Officer her role is very often to try to keep the Peace between two sides. She's good at diffusing situations. Calm under pressure.

Inner Monologue: A lot about crime, protecting society from chaos, the feeling that you're just a small person trying desperately to hold back a Tsunami of chaos. Trying to maintain some semblance of order in a crazy, violent world.

Questions the idea of what is right and wrong. How do we decide? What is it in humanity that so often seems to turn to violent solutions? How do you control it? How do you maintain order and civilization when there is such a beast inside everyone?

Husband: (56)Former Police Officer. Pub landlord. He's older than his wife and not the action man he once was...bought the pub after taking early retirement from the Police at 55.

Starting to worry he's getting too old for his wife. Particularly as she's got a younger, male partner...

Religious Views: No great believer, but like the structure religion provides.
Political Views: Authoritarian.

Daughter: (19)Royal Armoured Corps. Always been very sporty and athletic. Loud, outspoken, confident.


Son: Michael(15): Rebellious. Attracted to some of the more extreme ideas. Long term, Leans toward the teachings of antagonist.
Perhaps one of his best friends is the brother of local gang leader, Freddie. So he's attracted to that crowd.

Religious views: Strongly anti-theist.
Political Views: Chaotic.

Query: Should we make the family fixed race? Perhaps the woman Black/Afro Carribbean Descent, the Dad White Middle Class then the two kids mixed race?

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Scar Tissue Films  -  August 30th, 2019, 10:41am
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Quoted from ReneC
Melvin O'Donnell, 54, bus driver, divorced. A regular, someone who knows the city well and knows people along his route.

Barbara Pierce, 50, Melvin's ex-wife, comes looking for him when she can't get a hold of their 20 year old son Rupert soon after the fog hits.

George Prescott, 26, recently geology graduate, is on a date with Kim Libby, 25, American on a work visa. George is soon heading to Cornwall to work in the re-opening tin mine. His grandfather was a miner, but George will be working in a lab.


Sounds good. I like the lost son stand. Perhaps finding him is something our main character can be part of.
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Quoted from hawkeye


That’s where I think we can utilize the Telly or radio — the tv is on in the pub and it still works for now. And an expert is brought on who gives some heavy stuff that shakes everyone to the core.  And maybe the communications systems slowly start to go out and people now start coming up with their own theories, which panics people even more.  People gravitate to the people they find plausible. Camps are formed. Alliances are made and enemies are created. Social norms start to break down. The natural leaders try to bring calm to the situation but it may be a losing battle.

The military is called out, but even they can’t control the chaos as they don’t even know what they’re trying to control. They can’t see anything, they can’t fight what they can’t see and so they eventually give up, especially when they start to have physical and psychological trauma.  There is talk that there is an area over Spain and Africa, and plans are made to try and get there.

One of the pub regulars is a pilot, and he volunteers, reluctantly, to go up in his small plane to see if there is a ceiling to this fog.  He takes off, but within a minute or so, he comes crashing down back to earth. They rush to the crash and the pilot’s last words are something mysterious, like “It’s so beautiful” or some made up word that keeps everyone guessing.

Just some thoughts off the top of my head.


All good stuff.
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Quoted from Nomad
I like the idea of news sources slowly disappearing.  It builds tension.
.


For awhile there, I thought I would not be interested much in this challenge.  I still feel the same way, my hands are basically bound up. This quip reminded me of John Carpenter's The Fog a little bit, and I also started thinking about the 80s cult hit Night Of The Comet.

I'm getting the vibe that unlike other OWC, the entries won't be anonymous. Threads have been building up character types and scenarios, and I'm not sure when the deadlines are. If it's tonight, I'm really out for obvious reasons.  I'm still not sold on the overall concept, feels a little bit Mist TV series for me. I'm not even entirely feeling this challenge.

BUT
I really like the idea of "The Last Broadcast" - and it's been brought up in the other thread regarding radio and podcast DJs, where in the early to mid section of the timeline folks can call in and get a few answers. I'll even throw in a TV station (local) whose reporters are getting lost, killed  or stranded, and have to rely on the on;y footage they have and/or one "reporter and cameraman" risking life and limb to gather more information. I kind of like that.  At one point they can even cross paths with The Cult Leader, who may want to control "The Last Station" as his propaganda mouthpiece.  There's a lot of potential with the media angle; but I feel that this overall scope is a bit much.






  


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It's not going to be anonymous. It's a big, open collaboration between everyone. Which didn't actually mean you have to collaborate, as when the episodes are planned, a single writer can write an episode or a story strand, if they desire. But it will be read by everyone after the event and tweaked to make it better, more consistent etc

The original deadline was 7th September with the idea we'd plan over a week, then try to bash out a large part over the next week.


What actually happens is whiter matter. I've seen enough from the contributions to know that's its more than a viable project, so it's more about getting it right, whether that is, than deadlines. But deadlines help to give an impetus.

In terms of the concept, it's the Mist, the Walking Dead, Game of Thrones thrown into one without any definitively supernatural elements. The key to its success will be the underlying psychology of it, a certain tone, which I can feel and hear in my head, but don't feel the need to particularly explain as I think it will come about naturally as we write  and edit... But it's uniqueness  will essentially  come from its exploration of humanity and  its exploration into perception.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


Starting to worry he's getting too old for his wife. Particularly as she's got a younger, male partner...


Any details on Jane's younger male partner? If not, I'd like to take a stab at him.

As for the family being mixed, not a bad idea. But how will that come into play? Maybe one of the older locals is a racist?


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Go for it.

I don't want them to be having an affair, just yet, I don't think. But there's a certain chemistry and the husband's insecurity is kicking in.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Go for it.

I don't want them to be having an affair, just yet, I don't think. But there's a certain chemistry and the husband's insecurity is kicking in.


Gotcha. I'm at work now, but I'll see what I can come up with. How young were you thinking of making him? Around Jane's age? Younger?


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This is where we're upto, so far with the Pub cast list. Might be too long. Maybe we can merge characters. I've put the son and daughter in there as well, because they live upstairs. There are also rooms to rent.


Quoted Text


Melvin O'Donnell, 54, bus driver, divorced. A regular, someone who knows the city well and knows people along his route.

Teacher. Barbara Pierce, 50. Knows Freddie and his friends from school. Suspended Freddie. They despise each other., Melvin's ex-wife, comes looking for him when she can't get a hold of their 20 year old son Rupert soon after the fog hits.


Psychologist. Very adamant that the effects of the fog are all Psycholgical. But is having doubts about their own state of mind.

Hardcore drunk.  Lost his wife tragically some years before. He's one of the people that becomes affected by the fog. Starts to imagine that his wife is in the fog after hearing similar reports from people on the radio. Goes off to look for her?

George Prescott, 26, recently geology graduate, is on a date with Kim Libby, 25, American on a work visa. George is soon heading to Cornwall to work in the re-opening tin mine. His grandfather was a miner, but George will be working in a lab.

Accountant.Extremely Right Wing viewpoints,both socially and financially. Thinks lefties are all communists and layabouts.

Small business owner. Female.  Lifestyle guru/Business consultant. Control freak. Haughty. Aggressive. Slowly goes insane.

Elderley Couple. Old man on insulin for Diabetes. The kind of  couple that were childhood sweethearts and are still madly in love even though they're in their late 70's/early 80's.

Daughter: (19)Royal Armoured Corps. Always been very sporty and athletic. Loud, outspoken, confident.

Son: Michael(15): Rebellious. Attracted to some of the more extreme ideas. Long term, Leans toward the teachings of antagonist.
Perhaps one of his best friends is the brother of local gang leader, Freddie. So he's attracted to that crowd.


Freddie, 22: Local gang leader, piece of shit, drug addict, thief, hooligan, probably killed someone but he won't say for sure.
Freddie's friends.


Later Arrivals from out of the Fog?

Walter, 42: Davyhulme West Police Sergeant, has a grudge against Main Characters Husband over something in their past from working on the police force together. He has feelings for Jane.
Accident Victim
Someone unusually susceptible to the psychological effects of the fog. Perhaps the scizophrenic character Frank worked on.
Someone unusually susceptible to the physical effects of the fog...asthmatic.
Priest.
Some out of towners staying in the rooms upstairs, as suggested by PK. American Youtubers?
Heroine addict...customer of Freddie?
Helicopter/Airplane Pilot...has his own small jet over at Barton airfield. Quite close, if it wasn't for the fog.
Small business owner. Female. Perhaps the woman I developed before as a potential main character. Lifestyle guru/Business consultant. Control freak. Haughty. Aggressive. Slowly goes insane.





As I was collating the list, I noticed there's an interesting spread of characters, by accident or subconscious design.

There's the Army girl, Financial People, the Science expert (either the teacher or the drunk) , the psychologist, the criminal element and then when the Priest shows up....you've got the main factors that will come into play throughout the whole story arc...essentially the most common ways of looking at humanity, all in one room.

If we stick a bit of a conspiracy loon in there...the drunk, the heroine addict, or even the son or the teacher, you've got most strands that will come into play all present at the start.

Which is good.

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Quoted from Zack


Gotcha. I'm at work now, but I'll see what I can come up with. How young were you thinking of making him? Around Jane's age? Younger?


Bit younger than Jane. 32-37 maybe?
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Nomad
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As far as the characters in the pub, we need them to serve several purposes:  World building, introduce main characters, introduce problem, and come up with a plan of action to solve said problem.

The beauty of the pub is that we can have an eclectic mix of people.

Right now here's who I see in the pub:

  • Pub owner (husband of main character)
  • Science teacher - (Scottish) explains the basics of the science behind the fog.
  • Town drunk - (slurred speech) used to question everything the audience will question.
  • Jane - main character.  She shows up right after the fog rolls in and people start to freak out. She has news of the extent of the fog and let's us know that it's no ordinary fog. The fog needs to be frighteningly thick at first to really set the tone. You can barely see your outstretched hand. The sky is dark. Almost biblical "act of God" kind of fear. She should come in to diffuse a situation and flex her character. She's strong, smart, and a leader.
  • American vloggers - (male and female) they're waiting to fly back home but that never comes. They help flesh out the world.
  • Injured head guy (young, uses a lot of slang)- brings news of train accident. Vloggers aren't going anywhere right now.
  • Local gang member (dumb, sounds dumb, says dumb things)- He's the guy that the main character was called to deal with. He introduces...
  • Freddie - (raspy voice. speaks slowly, calulating) local gang leader. Main reason for this guy is conflict. Everyone is freaking out over the fog, but he's just looking to capitalize on it any way he can. He needs his gang on the streets to cause havock, and can't afford one of them to be locked up, so he and the main character go back and forth over this guy. Freddie threatens to escalate the situation, the main character is more concerned about the people in the pub and let's them go with a warning.


Again, these are just ideas, nothing set in stone.
We need the characters to have unique voices to easily distinguish who's speaking.

-Jordan


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ReneC
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Barbara Pierce can be the teacher. That eliminates one character and gives her another relationship dynamic.


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Quoted from Nomad
As far as the characters in the pub, we need them to serve several purposes:  World building, introduce main characters, introduce problem, and come up with a plan of action to solve said problem.

The beauty of the pub is that we can have an eclectic mix of people.

Right now here's who I see in the pub:

  • Pub owner (husband of main character)
  • Science teacher - (Scottish) explains the basics of the science behind the fog.
  • Town drunk - (slurred speech) used to question everything the audience will question.
  • Jane - main character.  She shows up right after the fog rolls in and people start to freak out. She has news of the extent of the fog and let's us know that it's no ordinary fog. The fog needs to be frighteningly thick at first to really set the tone. You can barely see your outstretched hand. The sky is dark. Almost biblical "act of God" kind of fear. She should come in to diffuse a situation and flex her character. She's strong, smart, and a leader.
  • American vloggers - (male and female) they're waiting to fly back home but that never comes. They help flesh out the world.
  • Injured head guy (young, uses a lot of slang)- brings news of train accident. Vloggers aren't going anywhere right now.
  • Local gang member (dumb, sounds dumb, says dumb things)- He's the guy that the main character was called to deal with. He introduces...
  • Freddie - (raspy voice. speaks slowly, calulating) local gang leader. Main reason for this guy is conflict. Everyone is freaking out over the fog, but he's just looking to capitalize on it any way he can. He needs his gang on the streets to cause havock, and can't afford one of them to be locked up, so he and the main character go back and forth over this guy. Freddie threatens to escalate the situation, the main character is more concerned about the people in the pub and let's them go with a warning.


Again, these are just ideas, nothing set in stone.
We need the characters to have unique voices to easily distinguish who's speaking.

-Jordan


Looks good. Some nice points to jump off from as well.

Originally, it seemed like we were going to have the fog thickening over time, but it seems to have developed that it literally just rolls in.

Is that OK with everyone? It's fine by me.

Probably there would be some concern it was a chemical cloud at the start.. Oil refinery explosion (there's a huge Shell refinery nearby) or even chemical attack.
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Quoted from ReneC
Barbara Pierce can be the teacher. That eliminates one character and gives her another relationship dynamic.


Nice work.
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Accessed from the Pub will be some other characters:


National News/International News, playing on the TV.


Local Radio Guy. They can use their phones to access the local news, and perhaps Freddie or one of his friends has a Bluetooth Speaker they all huddle round to listen to.


QUERY: Is it too much to have the main antagonist present in the pub at the start? Minding his own business on his laptop. He quickly leaves because he doesn't like being round people.

It's on his walk home that the first intimations that the fog affects him are understood.

From that point we can follow his story separately.


That would introduce us to all the major strands of the story at the outset. With the story spreading out from the pub once we know the characters well enough.


COBRA aspect can be handled either as opening scene at the start of an episode.

Or a News Reporter on the TV can question one of the characters in question. He gives an official answer....then we follow him into the meeting, and hear the real truth.
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Thick fog around Manchester isn't unusual. At first there's nothing to be alarmed about. The suddenness of the fog and that it wasn't expected to begin with is a cause for concern and the cause for much of the chaos. The tension will then rise further when it's revealed the fog is affecting a much larger area than normal. A phone conversation can reveal the fog is even somewhere that fog never occurs, but still somewhat local.

The global phenomenon is going to come out quickly. As long as news and social media work, it's going to be reported. My thinking for this is the fog doesn't spring up everywhere at once, it starts in patches all over the globe where fog typically appears and slowly spreads until it covers everything.


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That works for me.
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To trim the numbers in the pub down :

Could we merge the hardcore drunk with one of the other characters?

I think we'll merge the accountant and the small business owner into one financial consultant type.

Also, maybe the young couple are the accident victims who come a bit later.

I think we might move the backpackers to the City Centre for the time being as well.

They would come into it when the City empties and they head towards the town. A News report can mention it. They can cut to an eyes on the ground reporter who can interview or be accosted by the Americans who want their families to know they're all right. Then we follow their tale for a bit. Walking with the people leaving the city, looking for food.
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One thought as someone who listens often to podcasts.

I don't need to tell anyone (but I'm going to anyway) that the biggest difference between the visual of TV/Movies is that you can quickly identify who is who because you have a visual reference point.  You also have the auditory function and unusual characters burst out at you because they look AND sound differently than everyone else.

With podcasts, all you have is the auditory. If you have a dozen or more main characters, then they better sound unique and different than all the other characters. Otherwise it becomes a jumble and makes it difficult to follow.  If you ever listened to S Town, and I highly encourage you to give it a listen if you haven't, then you'll notice how different everyone sounds -- and these are real people.  

The point I'm making is that the main characters in this podcast should be kept at a manageable number so we can easily pick them out when several characters are in the room at the same time.  To me, this also means making them  easy to understand.  I've watched several British TV series like Broadchurch, Luther, Bodyguard, and Happy Valley, and Happy Valley especially I had to watch with the subtitles on.  I'm not certain whether you're placing this, but it needs to be somewhere that the accents won't affect our ability to understand what their saying.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled broadcast.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

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All good info, Gary. And I agree.

Different voices. Different races. Different styles of talking. Different things they talk about that's instantly recognisable.

Not too many at once. Find ways to reaffirm who they are from time to time.
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Quoted from hawkeye
One thought as someone who listens often to podcasts.

I don't need to tell anyone (but I'm going to anyway) that the biggest difference between the visual of TV/Movies is that you can quickly identify who is who because you have a visual reference point.  You also have the auditory function and unusual characters burst out at you because they look AND sound differently than everyone else.

With podcasts, all you have is the auditory. If you have a dozen or more main characters, then they better sound unique and different than all the other characters. Otherwise it becomes a jumble and makes it difficult to follow.  If you ever listened to S Town, and I highly encourage you to give it a listen if you haven't, then you'll notice how different everyone sounds -- and these are real people.  

The point I'm making is that the main characters in this podcast should be kept at a manageable number so we can easily pick them out when several characters are in the room at the same time.  To me, this also means making them  easy to understand.  I've watched several British TV series like Broadchurch, Luther, Bodyguard, and Happy Valley, and Happy Valley especially I had to watch with the subtitles on.  I'm not certain whether you're placing this, but it needs to be somewhere that the accents won't affect our ability to understand what their saying.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled broadcast.


This also brings up whether there should be a narrator or not. There are advantages and disadvantages either way.

A narrator could simply describe action lines, or it could be the first person accounting of one or more characters, either in the present or as if looking back from the future to recount the events from their point of view.


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Quoted from ReneC


This also brings up whether there should be a narrator or not. There are advantages and disadvantages either way.

A narrator could simply describe action lines, or it could be the first person accounting of one or more characters, either in the present or as if looking back from the future to recount the events from their point of view.


I think we'll have to experiment.

It feels like there are a lot of avenues that allow us to directly hear things : News, radio, Police characters calling dispatch, phone calls, people recording journals and the YouTubers. And obviously a large bulk of scenes will be directly acted as conversations.

But it feels that they're may be times when we want to hear direct thoughts.

EG.. (and don't take the writing as an example of the actual script!! )



FREDDIE Oi, Copper, nice arse.

JANE (V. O) Freddie 'Krueger' Collins, biggest tit in the town.

JANE Hello Frederick. Keeping out of trouble?




It seems like you can live in someone's head space quite easily without it seeming silly.

Finding a way to describe where you are is a bit of a skill as well.
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Narration can fill in areas where there is no dialogue. When a character is alone, or transitioning between locations, or the passage of time. The more I think about it, the more I think we can't avoid some narration, unless everything is in real time.

On the other hand, simple musical cues can denote transitions.

The Darkest Night podcast has a really good balance between dialogue and narration. It relies very heavily on the voice acting to make it work.

http://www.darkestnightpod.com/


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The Wolverine podcast doesn't seem to have a narrator. It uses long pauses for transitions, and characters use each others names a lot when speaking. It has more ambient noise to help situate the different locations.


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I'll definitely check it out.
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One good thing about the fog:

It gives people an excuse to always be on the phone. Or on walkie talkies.


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I think this story is going to need some narration.


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We'll start experimenting tomorrow.

There's a hell of a lot we can do without it, but if we need it, then we use it.
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LC
Posted: August 30th, 2019, 7:31pm Report to Moderator
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Maybe have a child (or at least younger than fifteen) narrate it, a smart Greta Thunberg type, then you can have
a clear, unrattled but innocent voice, commentate and make observations on the state of play - adults making not too clued-up decisions etc. Out of the mouths of babes. Oh, and a dog by her side. Oh, and a clutter of feral cats. Cats don't do well when in competition for food and they breed like rabbits. You can also get some good sound effects from them.

At the moment the cast is all adults. Unless a side effect of the fog is most kids perishing...



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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
I think we'll merge the accountant and the small business owner into one financial consultant type.


I'm going to call this guy David for the moment, just to cut down on the number of pronouns that follow.

To give this guy some texture, David can be the minority that the last-remaining-doctorlike-person doesn't like, and be the one on schizophrenia meds. Probably no indication of the illness at all until the pharmacy gets looted of all its narcotics and there's a mad dash to secure what's left.

David asks for all of the chlorpromazine, and he'd get perhaps most of it.

After being on reduced/stretched doses for a while, he makes a mistake on watch duty, sees his dancing lights out in the Fog and thinks it's someone approaching with a torch (that's British for flashlight). After the wasted effort to find the non-existent person, David is taken off watch duty and put to some other (less valuable) use. It's not like the town is in dire need of financial consulting, so he's effectively unskilled.

Later, Jane's partner gets injured, shows symptoms of Tetanus. The doctor, who probably has half a dozen other treatment options at hand, "hesitantly" suggests the chlorpromazine.

Depending on the needs of the story, this could be done publicly to shame the David into giving up his meds, or it can be said to some authoritative proxy (police chief, etc.) with a little bit of "You know the deputy's worth ten of him."

Later still, during the city-folk invasion, David saves the person who asked for the meds, gets impaled for his troubles, and hands over the remainder of the chlorpromazine which he had hidden somewhere on his person. "I'm not going to need this anymore."


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This challenge is a lot to wrap my head around, but it sounds like The Fog or The Mist.

Here are my character ideas:

ASH - an LGBT character

The President - A generic president

A Wolfman Jack-like radio DJ


FADE IN:
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LC
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Quoted from FrankM


I'm going to call this guy David for the moment, just to cut down on the number of pronouns that follow.

To give this guy some texture, David can be the minority that the last-remaining-doctorlike-person doesn't like, and be the one on schizophrenia meds. Probably no indication of the illness at all until the pharmacy gets looted of all its narcotics and there's a mad dash to secure what's left.

David asks for all of the chlorpromazine, and he'd get perhaps most of it.

After being on reduced/stretched doses for a while, he makes a mistake on watch duty, sees his dancing lights out in the Fog and thinks it's someone approaching with a torch (that's British for flashlight). After the wasted effort to find the non-existent person, David is taken off watch duty and put to some other (less valuable) use. It's not like the town is in dire need of financial consulting, so he's effectively unskilled.

Later, Jane's partner gets injured, shows symptoms of Tetanus. The doctor, who probably has half a dozen other treatment options at hand, "hesitantly" suggests the chlorpromazine.

Depending on the needs of the story, this could be done publicly to shame the David into giving up his meds, or it can be said to some authoritative proxy (police chief, etc.) with a little bit of "You know the deputy's worth ten of him."

Later still, during the city-folk invasion, David saves the person who asked for the meds, gets impaled for his troubles, and hands over the remainder of the chlorpromazine which he had hidden somewhere on his person. "I'm not going to need this anymore."


Hmm, interesting, Frank. I'm just not keen on the shame and worthy of living elements, even if you could argue you're shining a light on those aspects.

So, re the character suffering schizophrenia. I'll just make a couple suggestions... Do your research first. Chlorpromazine is a first generation medication which would bring you to: how old is this guy? Even if he's older, a person receiving regular meds and psychotherapy is likely now not only to be taking 2nd-generation antipsychotics (because they're superior and overdose is less likely fatal) but also be taking an anti-depressant and/or anti-convulsive/epileptic med. Obviously this is fiction so leeway applies lest you bore an audience with technicalities but it's still advisable you know your stuff...

Chlorpromazine is primarily viewed as outdated in first line of treatment these days for schizophrenia and psychotic episodes.  It would also only combat spasms in someone afflicted with tetanus, (diazepam would do the same trick) but you'd still need an antitoxin and antibiotics.

Re storyline, wouldn't it be a breath of fresh air in this climate (still) of stigma related to mental illness  (it's slowly improving) if the character was not just a plot device deserving of being impaled at the end, but if we as writers led the way to counter 'crazy' sterotypes. Your David could conversely be a high functioning individual, very intelligent, have a funny personality (maybe add comic relief with corny jokes) be well liked and be an asset to the survival of the group - maybe even be a leader of sorts. His gradual mental deterioration might then lead to him doubting his sanity as his meds wear off and he becomes less capable of making sound decisions. But even them have him aware of what's happening. He could even die heroically, saving someone else, while battling his own hallucinations. How about that? He could become a much loved character, his demise touching and tragic -

His denouement could be just like Jon Snow preparing for the Battle Of The Bastards - fans shrieking at the TV (or in this case, huddled around the podcast) yelling: No, he can't be gone...!

Okay, off my soapbox now.  
P.S. And no, I have no inclination to write David, btw. Just offering my thoughts, primarily on stereotypes.


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We have plenty of characters for the opening scene in the pub, we just need to figure out exactly who needs to be there, why do we need them there, and what are they doing.

They have to establish the world in a very short amount of time.
They have to show the problem in a very short amount of time.
And they have to come up with a plan of action in a very short amount of time.

We can't have the fog slowly get thicker over the course of several episodes.
The fog needs to be something frightening right away. It needs to be so thick you can't see more than 5 feet in front of you.
Then when people find out that the fog is just fog, and not some science/government/alien experiment gone awry, they'll really freak out because it's everywhere and there's no way to get rid of it.

I like the idea of the main character hearing reports on her radio:  Roads shut down, train wrecks, all units are to shelter in place and assist in the immediate area. Stay off the roads until it clears.

Trap these people together for a short while and build the conflict.

Who knows best?
Who is in charge?
What's going on?
What are they going to do?

I'm going to check out the chronology and see exactly where we're going in the story.
We have to be efficient with our characters and not waste time or energy on throwaway characters.
Every one of them needs a job. They need to do something for the story.

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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from LC
Maybe have a child (or at least younger than fifteen) narrate it, a smart Greta Thunberg type, then you can have
a clear, unrattled but innocent voice, commentate and make observations on the state of play - adults making not too clued-up decisions etc. Out of the mouths of babes. Oh, and a dog by her side. Oh, and a clutter of feral cats. Cats don't do well when in competition for food and they breed like rabbits. You can also get some good sound effects from them.

At the moment the cast is all adults. Unless a side effect of the fog is most kids perishing...


Yes, we need to know what to do with the kids eventually. For the time being, schools are closed and they are in their houses.

Perhaps the main characters immediate Storyline is trying to organise searches for missing persons. Including a couple of kids who were supposed to be at school. This gets her out and about, exploring the vicinity and reporting back over the dispatch as to what's going on.

At some point, there could be something like they did in the World War, and take the kids off to a supposedly safe place, ran by the military. In later seasons we can find out it wasn't so safe, or find out something much more dramatic as to what's happened to them.

We can pick up an orphaned kid along the way, as well, if we need a child's POV.

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Quoted from LC


Hmm, interesting, Frank. I'm just not keen on the shame and worthy of living elements, even if you could argue you're shining a light on those aspects.

So, re the character suffering schizophrenia. I'll just make a couple suggestions... Do your research first. Chlorpromazine is a first generation medication which would bring you to: how old is this guy? Even if he's older, a person receiving regular meds and psychotherapy is likely now not only to be taking 2nd-generation antipsychotics (because they're superior and overdose is less likely fatal) but also be taking an anti-depressant and/or anti-convulsive/epileptic med. Obviously this is fiction so leeway applies lest you bore an audience with technicalities but it's still advisable you know your stuff...

Chlorpromazine is primarily viewed as outdated in first line of treatment these days for schizophrenia and psychotic episodes.  It would also only combat spasms in someone afflicted with tetanus, (diazepam would do the same trick) but you'd still need an antitoxin and antibiotics.

Re storyline, wouldn't it be a breath of fresh air in this climate (still) of stigma related to mental illness  (it's slowly improving) if the character was not just a plot device deserving of being impaled at the end, but if we as writers led the way to counter 'crazy' sterotypes. Your David could conversely be a high functioning individual, very intelligent, have a funny personality (maybe add comic relief with corny jokes) be well liked and be an asset to the survival of the group - maybe even be a leader of sorts. His gradual mental deterioration might then lead to him doubting his sanity as his meds wear off and he becomes less capable of making sound decisions. But even them have him aware of what's happening. He could even die heroically, saving someone else, while battling his own hallucinations. How about that? He could become a much loved character, his demise touching and tragic -

His denouement could be just like Jon Snow preparing for the Battle Of The Bastards - fans shrieking at the TV (or in this case, huddled around the podcast) yelling: No, he can't be gone...!

Okay, off my soapbox now.  
P.S. And no, I have no inclination to write David, btw. Just offering my thoughts, primarily on stereotypes.



I'm with Libby re the character's arc. I think he should be a positive fellow who heroically battles with his condition.

I personally think he should make it all the way to the end of the season.

There are dramatic reasons for this: His POV will be unique as he's not sure what to think at certain times. He's also a necessary counterpoint to the assortment of psychos that will eventually turn up. Our Mental Health Ambassador, if you like.
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Quoted from Nomad
We have plenty of characters for the opening scene in the pub, we just need to figure out exactly who needs to be there, why do we need them there, and what are they doing.

They have to establish the world in a very short amount of time.
They have to show the problem in a very short amount of time.
And they have to come up with a plan of action in a very short amount of time.

We can't have the fog slowly get thicker over the course of several episodes.
The fog needs to be something frightening right away. It needs to be so thick you can't see more than 5 feet in front of you.
Then when people find out that the fog is just fog, and not some science/government/alien experiment gone awry, they'll really freak out because it's everywhere and there's no way to get rid of it.

I like the idea of the main character hearing reports on her radio:  Roads shut down, train wrecks, all units are to shelter in place and assist in the immediate area. Stay off the roads until it clears.

Trap these people together for a short while and build the conflict.

Who knows best?
Who is in charge?
What's going on?
What are they going to do?

I'm going to check out the chronology and see exactly where we're going in the story.
We have to be efficient with our characters and not waste time or energy on throwaway characters.
Every one of them needs a job. They need to do something for the story.

-Jordan


Yes. This is where we're going next.

I'll collate the definitive list of characters that start in the pub. We'll continue to pad out those characters, including backstories, and how to give them different, recognisable voices.

And we'll start creating their character arcs and fitting them into the chronological events to build the plot.

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Quoted from ChrisBodily
This challenge is a lot to wrap my head around, but it sounds like The Fog or The Mist.

Here are my character ideas:

ASH - an LGBT character

The President - A generic president

A Wolfman Jack-like radio DJ



It is a lot to wrap your head around, for sure. All you really need to know:

The Fog is worldwide (apart from some areas rumoured to be free from it, for now)
There's nothing definitively supernatural about the Fog...but humans being humans they don't know that and lots of rumours start up about it and  people come to believe there are things in the fog.
Because of the sensory deprivation caused by the relentless grey, and alongside other factors, people start  falling into depression, and later are susceptible to auditory and visual hallucinations/seeing things in the fog.
The world rapidly falls apart due to the Fog killing crops worldwide.

There are three main story strands.

1. Main timeline. Where we largely follow one family of four through the events. The main POV character is a female Police Officer. She has a husband who owns a pub. A daughter in the Military. And a younger, rebellious son. The story opens in the husband's pub, which has an assortment of regulars in it, across the social spectrum.
2. COBRA sideline: Government committee that is discussing the event and reacting to it. This provides exposition to the wider effects and also creates Dramatic Tension as the audience knows things that the main characters do not. This is a largely self-contained storyline that exists parallel to the main one.
3. Antagonist sideline. A highly intelligent, anti social guy who gradually becomes the leader of a large group of dangerous individuals after releasing prisoners from their prisons. We'll follow his deteriorating thoughts as he gradually becomes the antagonistic force.

The three story strands collide at the end of the season when the antagonist attacks a Military hydroponic encampment where the Main characters are, while the Cobra committee have started an attempt to burn the fog away using Military means...which goes out of control and burns a  large area....including the area where the above battle is taking place.


Anyway, Nice suggestions.

The President would definitely make an address at some point, and it would be released to the world's Media outlets, so we'd hear it over the TV, while the power is still on.

That is also an outlet for exposition on what the US is doing to try to fix the situation.

We'll also look at fitting Ash in along the way.

We've already got a Radio  guy. The people in the pub are going to be listening to him for local updates. It's a good suggestion.

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OK:

CHARACTERS MAKING THEIR WAY TO THE PUB IN DRAMATIC OPENING:

George Prescott, 26, recently geology graduate, is on a date with Kim Libby, 25, American on a work visa. George is soon heading to Cornwall to work in the re-opening tin mine. His grandfather was a miner, but George will be working in a lab. Accident Victims who appear out of the Fog after a car crash.

MICHELLE HIGSON. Lost child.  Represents  the child's innocent view and completes the age groups. Plot...trying to re-unite her with her parents.

BILL: Blind man with his guide dog.  Represents the blind in the story...unaffected by the fog as he can't see it.

These people meet up outside and are lead by the blind man to the pub.


CHARACTERS PRESENT IN THE PUB.

Husband of Jane, the Main Character: (56)Former Police Officer. Pub landlord. He's older than his wife and not the action man he once was...bought the pub after taking early retirement from the Police at 55.

Starting to worry he's getting too old for his wife. Particularly as she's got a younger, male partner...


Melvin O'Donnell, 54, bus driver, divorced. A regular, someone who knows the city well and knows people along his route. Leaves the pub to try to find his son along with his ex-wife? Represents Working Class man. Socialism. Maybe a little bit racist? Got common sense, but not a lot of education and has no real way of evaluating what's true or not true in terms of the science, psychology, economics etc.


Patricia: Female. Lifestyle guru/Business consultant. Control freak. Haughty. Aggressive.  Extremely Right Wing viewpoints, both socially and financially. Thinks lefties are all communists and layabouts. Slowly goes insane. Represents the Right wing  politically, and the Economy in General.

Clive: Psychologist/Hardcore Drunk. Very adamant that the effects of the fog are all Psycholgical. But is having doubts about his own state of mind. Lost his wife tragically some years before. He's one of the people that becomes affected by the fog. Starts to imagine that his wife is in the fog after hearing similar reports from people on the radio. Goes off to look for her?  Represents the psychological effect of the fog and the rational explanation of psychological phenomenon.


Elderly Couple. Peter: Old man on insulin for Diabetes. The kind of  couple that were childhood sweethearts and are still madly in love even though they're in their late 70's/early 80's.
Marjorie: Asthma sufferer. The effects of  the Fog are very hard on her body.  Represent the elderly and people who need medicine to keep them alive.

(Marjorie will die during the invasion from Manchester City Centre, Peter will not wish to go on without her, but he may make a surprising, heartfelt return).

Daughter: Abigail (Abs for short due to her physique?) (19)Royal Armoured Corps. Always been very sporty and athletic. Loud, outspoken, confident. She's working behind the bar to assist her Father while on leave from the Army. She will get called up by the Military and sent to protect a Hydroponic community that the Government/Military are installing. Her family will later join her.  Represents Military POV.



LATER ARRIVALS FROM THE FOG

Son: Michael(15): Rebellious. Attracted to some of the more extreme ideas. Long term, Leans toward the teachings of antagonist.
Perhaps one of his best friends is the brother of local gang leader, Freddie. So he's attracted to that crowd.  Represents impressionability of young, conflict with authority. The changing times...the future will be different than the imagined one and he'll have to decide for himself the best way to face it.

Starts the series lost in the fog after being truant from school. His Mother has to try to find him?

David: Someone unusually susceptible to the psychological effects of the fog. The schizophrenic character Frank worked on.  Represents the Mental Health issues people will face as medicines run dry. Perception, and the way humans see things and how that can be altered and how reality is only a kind of mass, shared hallucination.

Priest. A hard drinking, chain smoking, but deeply spiritual man. Possibly going  to attempt to lead his congregation to a place above the fog to start a community at some point. Represents the Theological/Spiritual side.

Teacher. Barbara Pierce, 50. Knows Freddie and his friends from school. Suspended Freddie. They despise each other., Melvin's ex-wife, comes looking for him when she can't get a hold of their 20 year old son Rupert soon after the fog hits.  Represents the Scientific side. Explanations.

Freddie, 22: Local gang leader, piece of shit, drug addict, thief, hooligan, probably killed someone but he won't say for sure.

Freddie's friends.  Represent the criminal/amoral element of society. The underbelly ready to cause chaos.

(These characters start to cause trouble locally, and become increasingly Feral as the story progresses. In some ways their chaotic nature and amorality give them an advantage over others as society breaks down).


The Antagonist. Socially reclusive, highly intelligent. He's  just stopped by to get a quick meal. He's alone in a secluded corner, working on his laptop. He leaves quite quickly. Doesn't like the people there. Needs a job that he does himself and requires him/allows him to record his thoughts on phone/Dictaphone.  Represents Logic/Reason taken to inhuman extremes. Force of antagonism, the changing of all things in a Material sense.


Jane: Main Character. Police Officer: Arrives with her Partner to deal with an altercation involving Freddie and his friends.  Represents Control vs Chaos. How to stop humanity falling into chaos.

Jane's Partner.  Younger, good looking Partner. Husband is a little bit  insecure about him.


PEOPLE ACCESSED THROUGH THE PUB

News Reporters on TV and other announcements (including World Events, and lead in to COBRA storyline).

Local Radio guy through radio from upstairs or from people's phones.

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Looks pretty good, Rick.

For big cast apocalyptic type events on film I looked at the cast numbers of the first season of The Walking Dead:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Walking_Dead_(season_1)

Obviously that cast grew as the story lines evolved, not counting those who were picked off regularly.  

Your cast list so far is on track if you were to consider the above as a successful and manageable template.

Anyway... Forgive me when I say (as you might have guessed) I'm one-hundred percent opinionated but not quite one-hundred percent commited yet to joining the throng on this project.

So, question:

In the spirit of me being opinionated,   are you committed to this opening, below?
** The story opens in the husband's pub, which has an assortment of regulars in it, across the social spectrum.

Wouldn't it be more highly dramatic to open a narrative about The Fog with characters actually lost or in strife in the fog?

Perhaps open with various audio scenes of characters in different situations when this calamity hits? Then the next scene is a rabble of excitable voices (the pub) where they've all found their way? You then naturally establish a hierarchy of characters - the natural leaders, those who are calming influencers, planners in a crisis etc., And
likewise those who aren't good in a crisis, freak out, etc.

Examples of active fog scenarios:

I had originally thought of a 'little girl lost' on her way home from school (the fog came in suddenly like a tidal wave catching everyone unawares) - she's a brave little girl but suddenly marooned, whimpering. She's crying softly after walking around in circles. A voice echoes through the fog, the voice of a blind man accompanied by his guide dog. He (and the dog) know this route like the back of their hands - to the pub, of course, where daily he enjoys a pint with his mates. The two (or three, if you count the dog) will take safe haven with everyone else.

Alternatively, or in addition, Rene's characters:

Accident Victims who appear out of the Fog after a car crash. George Prescott, 26, (recently geology graduate), is on a date with Kim Libby, 25,
A car accident could be a similarly emotive opening scene, highly charged with terrific and easily identifiable sound/audio effects.

Perhaps other scenes of 'where were you when it happened?' could be interweaved later, if you think it's too much at the top.

I just think you need to grab an audience at the outset with audio action, suspense - right in the thick of it.

...

Just mho.  





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OK. We're in a really good place. It's all coming together nicely.


Libby has suggested an interesting opening angle.

Start outside as the Fog hits. Characters in trouble make their way to the Pub.

From their we go into Jordan's suggestion: Jane, our main POV, is called to the Pub to deal with an altercation involving Freddie, a local trouble maker.


From this point we can build the story the story out.

The Fog rolls in quickly. Jane and her partner are called to deal with the developing situation...primarily Emergency Road Traffic duties, I imagine.

The next thing to deal with from her POV would probably be Missing Persons, lost in the Fog.,,but there is the opportunity here for anything dramatic.

There needs to be a discussion about how the local Police/Council deal with the matter in the short term which impacts the storyline of Jane. The orders she receives etc

Perhaps they start setting up lights etc to lead people home and to mark known landmarks. Perhaps the Police might even set up Radio systems telling people where they are. (also makes it easy to tell which location we are in when we cut).

Numbers in the Pub can be thinned  by having people leave to go to their homes. Others are invited to stay in the spare rooms upstairs. The pub has big freezers, with a lot of food reserves (to feed customers).

The main story event to build to is the Episode 5 Mid Season event. This is where the starving masses invade the town.

This will be a major "Clear the Decks" event.

The Pub will burn down.
The Town will be destroyed. Any characters we don't want can be killed off.
Others who survive will go their separate directions based on their choices (leaving story strands open to return to in later seasons/episodes).
Others will stay in the wreckage of their homes.

This allows us to re-focus the story onto our main group as they go off to the Hospital, then head towards a Military compound to find their Daughter.

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Quoted from LC
Looks pretty good, Rick.

For big cast apocalyptic type events on film I looked at the cast numbers of the first season of The Walking Dead:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Walking_Dead_(season_1)

Obviously that cast grew as the story lines evolved, not counting those who were picked off regularly.  

Your cast list so far is on track if you were to consider the above as a successful and manageable template.

Anyway... Forgive me when I say (as you might have guessed) I'm one-hundred percent opinionated but not quite one-hundred percent commited yet to joining the throng on this project.

So, question:

In the spirit of me being opinionated,   are you committed to this opening, below?
** The story opens in the husband's pub, which has an assortment of regulars in it, across the social spectrum.

Wouldn't it be more highly dramatic to open a narrative about The Fog with characters actually lost or in strife in the fog?

Perhaps open with various audio scenes of characters in different situations when this calamity hits? Then the next scene is a rabble of excitable voices (the pub) where they've all found their way? You then naturally establish a hierarchy of characters - the natural leaders, those who are calming influencers, planners in a crisis etc., And
likewise those who aren't good in a crisis, freak out, etc.

Examples of active fog scenarios:

I had originally thought of a 'little girl lost' on her way home from school (the fog came in suddenly like a tidal wave catching everyone unawares) - she's a brave little girl but suddenly marooned, whimpering. She's crying softly after walking around in circles. A voice echoes through the fog, the voice of a blind man accompanied by his guide dog. He (and the dog) know this route like the back of their hands - to the pub, of course, where daily he enjoys a pint with his mates. The two (or three, if you count the dog) will take safe haven with everyone else.

Alternatively, or in addition, Rene's characters:

Accident Victims who appear out of the Fog after a car crash. George Prescott, 26, (recently geology graduate), is on a date with Kim Libby, 25,
A car accident could be a similarly emotive opening scene, highly charged with terrific and easily identifiable sound/audio effects.

Perhaps other scenes of 'where were you when it happened?' could be interweaved later, if you think it's too much at the top.

I just think you need to grab an audience at the outset with audio action, suspense - right in the thick of it.

...

Just mho.  





I like.


I have nothing to add. I'll simply leave it here to see  what our fellow merry band of (mostly) men say.

It  does seem like a great opening. Full of action, fear.
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Right.

What I will do for the rest of the day is start to amend the chronology to include changes we've made along the way (eg speed Fog comes in), signify plot events, and start putting some of the basic character arcs in place. We'll eventually build this out into the script template/plot sequence together. Making it into a form that's easy to follow.


In the meantime:


We'll assume that we'll start dramatically as Libby suggested. People outside the pub getting caught in bad situations nearby, then making their way to the Pub.

Then there should be an altercation in the Pub. Freddie and his gang have made their way there, and they're not welcome.

Jane, our Police Officer is called by her husband to deal with it.

From there Jane and her Partner are called away to deal with developing events and become our eyes and ears in the local world.

Start making suggestions for her story. Probably there is a point she abandons her duties at Episode 5 to go and protect her own family and stays in the pub. That makes sense to me, anyway.
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Hey, Rick, sorry for the delay on the partner character. I'll write up what I've come up up with and share it when I get home.


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No problem.
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Can we get a roll call on who is involved in the writing?

So far, as a certainty, I think it's:

Rick
Rene
Gary
Frank
Jordan

Zack seemed like was a maybe based on the timing.  Libby?  Paul?  I may have missed a couple as well in the midst of all the threads.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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OK, I've had a go at just vomitting some ideas down for the start of the story. None of it is set in stone, or attempting to actually be good. It's just to throw something out to get the ball rolling. The philosophy being that if there's something down, it's easier to add to, correct, replace, suggest and improve things than if there's nothing.

EPISODE ONE

Day One: Date: JANUARY 13th
Main Story:

SETTING: MOORSIDE ROAD, DAVYHULME.

Dramatic Appearance of Fog.

We open on one such crash.

A car turning right is hit by a bus being driven by Melvin.
The car is flipped and trapped under the bus, seriously injuring two people.

George Prescott and Kim, who are out Pov for the scene, are involved in a nasty crash. They drive straight into the back of another car that has already crashed.
There are others injured.
Lots of screaming and shouts for help.
Kim calls an amubulance and is told they will get there as fast as they can.
Ask her if George is conscious.
He is. They tell her to stay where she is.
Kim says they should wait in the car for the Ambulance, but George insists he's fine and wants to get out of the fog and the car. He's worried that another car will hit them from behind.
Kim helps George from the car.
They have no idea where they are. The fog is too disorientating.
They narrowly avoid being hit again as a car serves by them.
People in the fog are screaming in fear and pain.
No-one knows what's going on. Lots of cries for help.


CUT TO JANE:

Jane and her partner are nearby in their squad car.
Dispatch tells them about the crash on Moorside Road (where the Garrick's Head pub is).
They head over to check on the victims and to close the road off.
They put their sirens on and their flashing blue lights and make their way there.
Most other cars pull over to the side of the road for safety, and to let them pass.
They get to the scene of the accident. It's bad.
Numerous cars involved in a pile up.
A bus has smashed into one car turning right.
The car is stuck under the bus.


Partner calls dispatch recommends Emergency crews and closing roads. Dispatch this is Officer xxxxxxx. There's a pile up on Moorside Road. Need to get Emergency Services out here and  shut the roads down.

Jane's Partner takes the car and closes off the end of the road, leaving the car parked across the entrance with it's flashing lights.
He takes some bollards and lights from the trunk/boot and runs back as best he can to close off the other road before more accidents occur.  
Two people in the car are still alive, but this is an emergency.
They are trapped in the car, under the bus.
There's a little girl there's also..Olivia, Calling to her mummy and daddy who are the ones people in the car.
The bus driver, Melvin, is traumatised.
A fire has started.
The girl wanders off into the fog.

She calls Dispatch and makes them aware of how bad the situation is and that they need to deal with it.
Dispatch: We're getting calls from everywhere, you'll have to deal with it.



CUT BACK TO GEORGE AND KIM.

People outside find themselves trapped in the fog.
People make their way blindly to wherever they can.
There are confused people passing them in the street. SOme curious overheard conversations about the fog, Foreshadowing that the fog effects some people.
They struggle to the side of the road.
And come across a young girl, crying, who has been separated from her parents.
They shout for the parents, but no-one comes.
What's your name, Honey?
Olivia. Olivia Higson.
Where's your parents?
They won't wake up.
We can't just leave her.
We'll find your parents, honey. Come with us.
They take the girl with them, thoguh they have no idea where they're going themselves.
An older blind man (name, race, backstory?)meets them and offers to guide them towards the pub he goes to every day. His guide dog leads them all there. There's a Pub just ahead. The Garrick's Head. Me dog takes me there for a pint every day.

CUT BACK TO JANE:

The injured people are unresponsive.
She shows her leadership skills by organising some people standing round to help.
She cuts the seat belts of the injured passngers.
And arranges for the standers by to help her pull the first injured people out on a count of three.
They get the two passengers out, alive, but hurt.
She orders everyone away from the buring wreckage in case it explodes.
Her tone leaves no room for denial.
Everyone moves back to a safe distance, stumbling throguh the fog together.
A huge boom as the car explodes into fire.

She calls Dispatch. There's a big fire. Need to extinguish it in case it spreads.

She still has the injured people to deal with.
She organises them all. Anyone who can walk, follow me.
She instructs the standers by who helped pull the injured out to carry the injured to the Hospital, which can't be seen, but is also a few hundred yards away.
They all go there, following Jane's Partner who is using his GPS.
They make it to the side wall of the Hospital and slowly make their way down to the Accident and Emergency Entrance.

CUT BACK TO:

George and Kim enter the Garrick's Head Pub, with Michelle (the little girl), lead by the blind man.
Kim shouts for help. he's injured, and we couldn't get an mbulance.
The Landlord and his Daughter get towels to treat the accident victim.
Kim telling everyone about how bad it is out there, there's been a huge crash. The Fog came out of nowhere.
Reaction to that: People worried about families/friends. Some want to go out, but are rapidly convinced it's a bit idea.
Introductions: What are your names? I'm Kim, he's George. This man lead us here.
Landlord: Hi Bill.
This girl is Michelle. She's lost her parents.
The Daughter says hello to the little girl and takes her away with her to find something less gruesome to occupy her time.
Landlord: The Hospital's just over the road. We can try and walk you over, if you like?
George: It's Mayhem out there, I just want to sit down for a minute.
They treat his wounds.
It looks nasty. You really need to get to the Hospital. You can't be too careful with head injuries.
He tells Kim to apply pressure to the wound.
HAve you seen it out there? YOu can't see more a few feet at best!
Landlord calls for an Ambulance, but are told that there are none available and it will be some wait.
The adviser on the phone says to keep George awake (medical advice..check for concussion etc).
Other people have made their way into the Pub.
Melvin O Donnell remarks that in all his years of driving he's never seen fog like this. Are you sure it isn't a chemical leak?
Patricia mentions that it might be a terrorist attack.
Landlord tells them to calm down it's just Fog.
Clive: We better close the windows, just in case.
Landlord: Probably not a bad idea.
They notice on the TV screen in the pub, that whichever sport was on has been abandoned due to the Fog.
It must be widespread across the country.

Daughter turns the channel on the TV to the News.
She yells for quiet.

TV CHANNEL

Breaking News about the Fog.
Hearing reports of major traffic incidents across the country.

MAIN STORY

Landlord I told you, it's just fog. Or do you think Terrorists have attacked the whole country?
Melvin: It could still be some kind of attack. Korea, or something.
Landlord: Give me a break.

Clive, the psychologist:  Here look out the window, look at it. There's something not right about it. Can you see it?
Melvin: What the hell are you talking, about? It's just fog.
Clive: No, it's....
Melvin: It's what?
Clive: I don't know. Forget it.

Landlord: How's the patient doing?
George: I'm  alright, just a bit dizzy.

Peter and Marjorie toddle over to the action.

Marjorie: I'll look after him. I was a Nurse in the second world war.
Landlord: Really?
Marjorie: No, not really young man. I'm not that old. The cheek of the young man, Peter!. Have you heard this, Peter? He's saying I'm ancient.
Peter: I heard. Terrible it is. Grey discrimination. Young people have no respect.
They both chuckle.
Marjorie: ALright,luvvie. What have you done, banged your head?
Kim: We had a car crash. He may have hit his head on the dashboard.
Marjorie: That's a bad business. We never crashed did we, Peter?
Peter: no, never.
Marjorie: We were always too careful.
Peter: I think we had better coordination than young folks these days, we had to do more with our hands.
Marjorie: That's right. Young folk sspend too long on their devices these days. They're not focused.
Peter: They're like Zombies.

They chuckle again.

Marjorie: Let's have a look at this.

SFX: Peeling off the wounds cover.

Marjorie: OOooh, that's nasty. You need to see the Hospitsl with that.
Kim: There are no Ambualances. And we don't know where it is.
Marjorie: It's only over the road. We can take him, can't we Peter?
Peter: I don't see why not.
You can't see out there.
Marjorie: It's only a bit of fog. Wecan handle it. Peter was a Frogman in the WOrld War, weren't you Peter?

He laughs.

Peter: That's right.

They check outsde...it's far too foggy to go.

Out of the fog, some figures loom.

Freddie and his gang enter the Pub.
Arguments begin because the Landlord and the regulars don't want him there.
Freddie refuses to leave.
Just serve us the drinks, fat lad.
The situation becomes hostile.
Husband doesn't want to get involved. Worried he might lose the fight and no-one  else in the pub is willing to help.
Clive: Just serve them.
Landlord does.


CUT TO HOSPITAL:

Jane and her partner have made their way to the hopsital with the injured and the passers by.
JANE: I didn't want to move them, but the car was on fire and we didn't have a choice.
Doctors and Nurses make checks on the injured and whisk them away for treatment.
The passers by want to know what to do now. They don't know where they are. She advises them to stay in the Hospital until the Fog clears and thanks them all for the help.


CUT TO PUB:

Freddie and his gang want more. Don't want to pay.
Freddie makes his way round the bar to serve himself and his friends when the Landlord refuses.
Landlord calls his wife, Jane. Our Police Officer.

CUT TO HOSPITAL:

Mobile phone rings. It's her husband.
Tells her there's a problem with local gangs in the pub. Could turn nasty.
Can't you handle it?
(Pause) There's a few of them.
Alright, we'll be there.

She calls dispatch.
Got an incident over at the Garrick's Head.
Isn't that your place?
Yeah.

They make their way throguh the fog.
More foggy weirdness.
Some strange incident with a passer by.

POSSIBILITY they meet David here, lost in the Fog and he wants to walk with them. He's disoriented.

Then they get to the Pub.


She and her Partner deal with Freddie, who seems to want to fight.
Her partner's son is part of the gang they're facing.
Partner takes his Taser out.
She knows his address it's not far.  A grown boy like you isn't scared of a little Fog, are you? Do you want me to hold your hand and walk you home?
Or hardcore: There are serious incidents going on , you either leave now in perfect health, or you leave with your face in pieces. It's up to you.
You can't say that.
Make a complaint to the Police Complaints Authority if you like. Once your wounds have  healed.
Freddie laughs.

Here, have your pint back. He throws the glass behind the bar, shattering it.

Then leaves with his friends.
Jane's partner moves to get his son.
Jane: Leave it for now.

ON TV

Continuing with the breaking news about the fog.
Reports of major incidents across the country.
Major pile ups on M1, M60.
Government recommends people don't travel.
Stay where you are until the fog has passed.
Commercial flights delayed.
Schools Shut. Who parents should call if they are worried?

IN PUB:

Jane  talks with husband and daughter.
Where's Michael?
Shit. He was at  school. He must still be out there.
He tries calling.
No answer.
He's not answering.
Call the school.
Maybe they're all still there.
He calls the school.
Headmaster tells him that Michael wasn't in today.
Where the Hell is he?

She tells them to put all the lights on upstairs. Maybe stick some christmas lights out front, so that people, and Michael, who are lost in the fog can find their way here. .

Dispatch is calling them back to work. But they inform them that the roads are untravellable.
Talks to them about her missing son.
They're getting a lot of calls from people worried about their families?
Does she have any ideas?
They could mark out the roads, major landmarks, maybe but radios out to tell people where they are?
Does she think that's necessary? Surely the fog will go in a couple of hours?
Maybe.

People in the pub mention the injured man, George.
His condition has taken a turn for the worse. Looks like he's severely concussed after all. Losing consciousness.
She suggests they escort the injured guy over to the Hospital.

CUT TO OUTSIDE:

She and her partner help them across the road.

Ambulances and Police Vans go past, sirens screaming.

THEN WHAT DO THEY DO????????



CUT TO PUB:


TV Host questioning someone about whether it's just Fog or something else?
Impossible to say right now, but it's so widespread that it appears to be a natural weather phenomenon.


After the super fast start I imagine that the Pub characters are effectively stuck in the Pub for the foreseeable, and settle down and start talking...which is when we get to know who they are better.

Probably some interesting entrance for the main antagonist is in order as well. Either walking in out of the fog, or doing something strange/memorable if he's already in there.

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Scar Tissue Films  -  September 3rd, 2019, 4:17pm
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ReneC
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Everything is coming together quite nicely.

A word of caution about the opening though. If Jane is our main character, the current opening doesn't establish that very well. Having a series of short scenes in the fog is fine, but then we stay on George and Kim after their accident. They will seem to be the main characters, but they aren't even major characters.

We can do the terrible driving conditions and the crash and leave them. Let us wonder about their fate. Go to Jane, and stay with her. That should be the longest scene so far. It doesn't matter how the couple make their way to the pub afterwards.


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ReneC
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For the antagonist, maybe he doesn't work. He inherited a small fortune quite young (no family) and effectively lives outside of society but maybe judges it quite harshly, and privately. He knows the world is broken and needs fixing. He logs his personal thoughts and ideas, certain one day he's going to write a book that will change the world. And in the meantime, life just keeps dumping on him, proving him right.

In the pub, he can be writing about the people around him or about what's on the television. When he leaves, he could get nearly run into by a bicycle and yelled at, maybe even drop his precious laptop. Something that sets him off.

For the altercation, maybe it's that one of the patrons has a restraining order against one of Freddie's goons for domestic abuse. She sees him outside and calls the police even though the goon doesn't know she's there, because she's afraid. She's also too afraid to leave. Something more urgent can pull Jane away after confronting the goon and he leaves, only to come back soon after she's gone and now he knows she's inside, his own little power move. It might even be Patricia, someone who's strong and capable in many ways but deeply affected by her bad choices romantically. It might even be the thing that unhinges her in all of this.


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Quoted from ReneC
Everything is coming together quite nicely.

A word of caution about the opening though. If Jane is our main character, the current opening doesn't establish that very well. Having a series of short scenes in the fog is fine, but then we stay on George and Kim after their accident. They will seem to be the main characters, but they aren't even major characters.

We can do the terrible driving conditions and the crash and leave them. Let us wonder about their fate. Go to Jane, and stay with her. That should be the longest scene so far. It doesn't matter how the couple make their way to the pub afterwards.


I think the biggest issue we've got is making her storyline engaging.

Everything else pretty much writes itself, but it's hard to find something to give her to do that doesn't feel extraneous.

Usual cop motifs don't really apply.

Hmm.
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Having it more as an ensemble piece, with her coming into prominence later might be OK. Kind of like Game of Thrones, you don't really know who is going to be the important one /s.

Either way, there needs to be more of an exciting role for her.

Rescuing people from the accident before a car explodes? Bit cliche.

Pk had a nice idea for a bit of a murder mystery. People disappearing. Killer on the loose. That was when the shape of the story was a bit different.

Give us something people.
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A possible title came to me. Obscurus.


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What about if her son Michael is missing from school?

So she's desperately trying to find him at the front end?


Sets up the beginnings of a conflict between family and duty as well.
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Quoted from LC


Hmm, interesting, Frank. I'm just not keen on the shame and worthy of living elements, even if you could argue you're shining a light on those aspects.

So, re the character suffering schizophrenia. I'll just make a couple suggestions... Do your research first. Chlorpromazine is a first generation medication which would bring you to: how old is this guy? Even if he's older, a person receiving regular meds and psychotherapy is likely now not only to be taking 2nd-generation antipsychotics (because they're superior and overdose is less likely fatal) but also be taking an anti-depressant and/or anti-convulsive/epileptic med. Obviously this is fiction so leeway applies lest you bore an audience with technicalities but it's still advisable you know your stuff...

Chlorpromazine is primarily viewed as outdated in first line of treatment these days for schizophrenia and psychotic episodes.  It would also only combat spasms in someone afflicted with tetanus, (diazepam would do the same trick) but you'd still need an antitoxin and antibiotics.

Re storyline, wouldn't it be a breath of fresh air in this climate (still) of stigma related to mental illness  (it's slowly improving) if the character was not just a plot device deserving of being impaled at the end, but if we as writers led the way to counter 'crazy' sterotypes. Your David could conversely be a high functioning individual, very intelligent, have a funny personality (maybe add comic relief with corny jokes) be well liked and be an asset to the survival of the group - maybe even be a leader of sorts. His gradual mental deterioration might then lead to him doubting his sanity as his meds wear off and he becomes less capable of making sound decisions. But even them have him aware of what's happening. He could even die heroically, saving someone else, while battling his own hallucinations. How about that? He could become a much loved character, his demise touching and tragic -

His denouement could be just like Jon Snow preparing for the Battle Of The Bastards - fans shrieking at the TV (or in this case, huddled around the podcast) yelling: No, he can't be gone...!

Okay, off my soapbox now.  
P.S. And no, I have no inclination to write David, btw. Just offering my thoughts, primarily on stereotypes.


Wow this thread moves fast.

Thanks for the info, Libby. I don't have any experience with antipsychotic drugs or anyone who takes them (I think... it's not the kind of thing that comes up in casual conversation with coworkers).

I just went to drugs.com and picked out the highest-popularity antipsychotic drug that had an on-label alternate use. Lots of them have a note indicating off-label uses, but they didn't say what those are. If you know of a more up-to-date drug with an interesting off-label use, it might make for a better story.

About the worth of a person, that's the doctor's racism showing through, not his judgment of mental health patients... though he'd be taking advantage of such attitudes in the authoritative proxy.

I'd be perfectly fine with this guy surviving the main assault... I just figured he doesn't carry a major arc so he'd likely be toast during that battle.

If he is going to stick around, he can become the group's incredibly inexperienced therapist. He would have no formal training... just been through a lot of time in a psychiatrist's office.

Hell, even if he is going to bite the dust, he could still be helping people deal with their issues and then leave the town without any kind of psychological support.


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The Partner.

Peter, 42. Just transferred to the community, was a big shot police officer in a big city. Served in the military before that. A natural leader, admired and respected by his peers. Movie star handsome. Also happens to be of the same nationality and religion as Jane, maybe they used to know each other when they were younger? Same highschool? He's not perfect though. No one is. He's a recovering alcoholic, just hit 12 years sober, and has a strained relationship with his 22 year old son.

When the event happens and everyone starts to panic, Peter stays calm and collected. Quickly settles into a leadership role. As conditions worsen, he finds himself falling in love with Jane. I think Peter should have an early and surprising death.

That's what I've got at the moment. Any thoughts?


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Frank,

Chlorpromazine was the first major breakthrough drug so it goes to show why it's still up there in search results.

Going out now but I'll post more that might be useful later. This is a collaboration so sharing is vital to the cause.
...

Common off-label uses for antipsychotic meds:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK66085/#!po=13.7324

These are the common 2nd-gen antipsychotics:
https://www.sane.org/information-stories/facts-and-guides/antipsychotic-medication

The most popular and prescribed 2nd Gen antidepressants are SSRI's
https://www.healthline.com/health/depression/medication-list:


https://www.pharmacytimes.com/publications/issue/2011/june2011/old-drugs-are-new-again-
Repurposed drugs e.g. Thalidomide once banned now used to treat some cancers and leprosy.

A lot of schizophrenia sufferers use depot injectable meds cause they're long lasting.
https://www.webmd.com/schizophrenia/schizophrenia-long-lasting-drugs

Not sure if this is very helpful re alt uses in your example of Tetanus. Like I said you'd still need antitoxin and antibiotics.

All meds running out is going to be a worry though - insulin, asthma meds, heart meds, chemotherapy meds, antibiotics for those injured or sick... Not to mention blood supplies etc.



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I know two schizophrenics.

1. Former advertising guy in London. Got into financial and marital trouble, hit drugs, took LSD and it turned out he was a latent schizophrenic.

He was the 'took a trip and never came down' cliche.

He's never recovered and is permanently institutionalised. He occasionally escapes and always heads to the same place in Devon.. A place where he used to be happy.

It's very sad, and the hospital just keeps him permanently sedated. I doubt that is the best way of dealing with it, but that's the way it is.

2. Girlfriend's cousin. Has auditory hallucinations. 7 voices in her head. Six men who she says are very nice to slightly annoying, and one woman who she says is a 'hateful bitch'. It's essentially her inner judgememt/ inner critic personified, always tearing her down. The drugs she's on control the symptoms, but space her out and take her energy away. It's a bit of a shame as she's super intelligent and the drugs take a lot of her away.


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That latter example is very sad, Rick. Well, they're both very sad. It's quite rare - the amount of voices in her head. There's a wide spectrum of how the illness affects people. Let's not forget John Nash - A Beautiful Mind.

And there's remission for some too:
https://library.neura.edu.au/schizophrenia/illness-course-and-outcomes/remission-and-recovery/



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Yeah, it is sad.

On a brighter note, there's a guy that lives near me, whom I don't know, but occasionally find myself in the same coffee shop as.

He's about 70-75.

He has an invisible friend called Sam whom he talks to constantly...and they have some exceedingly funny conversations.

They do a running commentary on people walking by, which is always incredibly funny.

I don't know who Sam is, but they have a very jolly time together.
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Quoted from Zack
The Partner.

Peter, 42. Just transferred to the community, was a big shot police officer in a big city. Served in the military before that. A natural leader, admired and respected by his peers. Movie star handsome. Also happens to be of the same nationality and religion as Jane, maybe they used to know each other when they were younger? Same highschool? He's not perfect though. No one is. He's a recovering alcoholic, just hit 12 years sober, and has a strained relationship with his 22 year old son.

When the event happens and everyone starts to panic, Peter stays calm and collected. Quickly settles into a leadership role. As conditions worsen, he finds himself falling in love with Jane. I think Peter should have an early and surprising death.

That's what I've got at the moment. Any thoughts?


All good stuff.

We'll Anglicise it a bit.

Big city= London.
Hollywood looks = rugged, good looks.

Rather than a full blown alcoholic, what do you think about a problem drinker whose temper gets a bit out of control when he's had a drink? Maybe some hidden trauma from his military past at the root of it?

I reckon a little younger than Jane as well. Maybe 37 tops.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


Big city= London.
Hollywood looks = rugged, good looks.

Rather than a full blown alcoholic, what do you think about a problem drinker whose temper gets a bit out of control when he's had a drink? Maybe some hidden trauma from his military past at the root of it?

I reckon a little younger than Jane as well. Maybe 37 tops.


Like it all. Maybe when he was in the military, a mistake he made led to the death of a fellow soldier? What do you think of him having a son? If Peter is 37, maybe his so is like 17. His son is constantly getting into trouble, lashing out at his father.


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If he's going to have a son, we could make him one of Freddie's gang. Gone off the rails a bit, rebelling against his Father,
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Shall we make him a single father as well? Put a bit of pressure on his shoulders?
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
If he's going to have a son, we could make him one of Freddie's gang. Gone off the rails a bit, rebelling against his Father,


So maybe the one drawing Jane’s own rebellious son toward the gang.


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Quoted from FrankM


So maybe the one drawing Jane’s own rebellious son toward the gang.


Makes sense to me.
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Rick, just sent you a PM.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Shall we make him a single father as well? Put a bit of pressure on his shoulders?


Yes, I believe his previous marriage likely ended badly, maybe do to his drinking?


Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
If he's going to have a son, we could make him one of Freddie's gang. Gone off the rails a bit, rebelling against his Father,


Like it.


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Quoted from FrankM


So maybe the one drawing Jane’s own rebellious son toward the gang.


Double like it. I think the son should be a lost cause. Maybe he's the one to kill his father?


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Seem like a decent plotline.
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EPISODE ONE

Day One: Date: JANUARY 13th
Main Story:

SETTING: MOORSIDE ROAD, DAVYHULME.

Open on:George and Kim driving. Talking.
Traffic moving quickly.
Dramatic Appearance of Fog.
A car turning right ahead of them  is hit by a bus being driven by Melvin. 
The car is flipped and trapped under the bus, seriously injuring two people. 
Other cars hit, or are shunted into the crashed vehicles.
George Prescott and Kim are involved in the same nasty crash. They drive straight into the back of another car that has already crashed into a car in front, which had ploughed into the bus from the side. Its a huge pile up.
There are many injured. 
Lots of screaming and shouts for help. 
Kim calls an amubulance and is told they will get there as fast as they can. 
Ask her if George is conscious.
He is. They tell her to stay where she is. 
Kim says they should wait in the car for the Ambulance, but George insists he's fine and wants to get out of the fog and the car. He's worried that another car will hit them from behind. 
Kim helps George from the car. 
They have no idea where they are. The fog is too disorientating.
They narrowly avoid being hit again as a car serves by them.
People in the fog are screaming in fear and pain. 
No-one knows what's going on. Lots of cries for help. 


CUT TO JANE:
Jane and her partner are nearby in their squad car. 
Dispatch tells them about the crash on Moorside Road (where the Garrick's Head pub is).
They head over to check on the victims and to close the road off.
They put their sirens on and their flashing blue lights and make their way there. 
Most other cars pull over to the side of the road for safety, and to let them pass.
They get to the scene of the accident. It's bad.
Numerous cars involved in a pile up.
A bus has smashed into one car turning right.
The car is stuck under the bus. 


Partner calls dispatch recommends Emergency crews and closing roads. Dispatch this is Officer xxxxxxx. There's a pile up on Moorside Road. Need to get Emergency Services out here and  shut the roads down.

Jane's Partner takes the car and closes off the end of the road, leaving the car parked across the entrance with it's flashing lights. 
He takes some bollards and lights from the trunk/boot and runs back as best he can to close off the other road before more accidents occur.  
Two people in the car are still alive, but this is an emergency.
They are trapped in the car, under the bus. 
There's a little girl there's also..Olivia, Calling to her mummy and daddy who are the ones people in the car. 
The bus driver, Melvin, is traumatised. 
A fire has started.
The girl wanders off into the fog. 

She calls Dispatch and makes them aware of how bad the situation is and that they need to deal with it.
Dispatch: We're getting calls from everywhere, you'll have to deal with it. 


CUT BACK TO GEORGE AND KIM.

People outside find themselves trapped in the fog.
People make their way blindly to wherever they can.
There are confused people passing them in the street. SOme curious overheard conversations about the fog, Foreshadowing that the fog effects some people.
They struggle to the side of the road.
And come across a young girl who has been separated from her parents.
They shout for the parents, but no-one comes.
What's your name, Honey?
Olivia. Olivia Higson.
Where are your parents?
I couldn't wake them up. She's crying.
Were they in the car? She nods.
What should we do? They take the girl with them, thoguh they have no idea where they're going themselves.
An older blind man (name, race, backstory?)meets them and offers to guide them towards the pub he goes to every day. His guide dog leads them all there. There's a Pub just ahead. The Garrick's Head. Me dog takes me there for a pint every day.

CUT BACK TO JANE:

Terrible situation.
A family is trapped under the car.
A fire has started.
The bus driver is traumatised.
Jane again calls dispatch and checks the ETA of the Ambulance and Fire Services. They are not going to be here on time.
She shows her leadership skills by organising some people standing round to help.
She cuts the seat belts of the injured passngers.
And arranges for the standers by to help her pull the first injured people out on a count of three.
They get the two passengers out, alive, but hurt.
She orders everyone away from the buring wreckage in case it explodes.
Her tone leaves no room for denial.
Everyone moves back to a safe distance, stumbling throguh the fog together.
A huge boom as the car explodes into fire.

She calls Dispatch. There's a big fire. Need to extinguish it in case it spreads.

She still has the injured people to deal with.
She organises them all. Anyone who can walk, follow me.
She instructs the standers by who helped pull the injured out to carry the injured to the Hospital, which can't be seen, but is also a few hundred yards away.
They all go there, following Jane's Partner who is using his GPS.
They make it to the side wall of the Hospital and slowly make their way down to the Accident and Emergency Entrance.

CUT BACK TO:

George and Kim enter the Garrick's Head Pub, with Michelle (the little girl), lead by the blind man.
Kim shouts for help. he's injured, and we couldn't get an mbulance.
The Landlord and his Daughter get towels to treat the accident victim.
Kim telling everyone about how bad it is out there, there's been a huge crash. The Fog came out of nowhere.
Reaction to that: People worried about families/friends. Some want to go out, but are rapidly convinced it's a bit idea.
Introductions: What are your names? I'm Kim, he's George. This man lead us here.
Landlord: Hi Bill.
This girl is Olivia. She's lost her parents. (quietly.)I think they are in the crash.
The Daughter says hello to the little girl and takes her away with her to find something less gruesome to occupy her time.
Landlord: The Hospital's just over the road. We can try and walk you over, if you like?
George: It's Mayhem out there, I just want to sit down for a minute.
They treat his wounds.
It looks nasty. You really need to get to the Hospital. You can't be too careful with head injuries.
He tells Kim to apply pressure to the wound.
HAve you seen it out there? YOu can't see more a few feet at best!
Landlord calls for an Ambulance, but are told that there are none available and it will be some wait.
The adviser on the phone says to keep George awake (medical advice..check for concussion etc).
Other people have made their way into the Pub.
Melvin O Donnell remarks that in all his years of driving he's never seen fog like this. Are you sure it isn't a chemical leak?
Patricia mentions that it might be a terrorist attack.
Landlord tells them to calm down it's just Fog.
Clive: We better close the windows, just in case.
Landlord: Probably not a bad idea.
They notice on the TV screen in the pub, that whichever sport was on has been abandoned due to the Fog.
It must be widespread across the country.

Daughter turns the channel on the TV to the News.
She yells for quiet.

TV CHANNEL

Breaking News about the Fog.
Hearing reports of major traffic incidents across the country.

MAIN STORY

Landlord I told you, it's just fog. Or do you think Terrorists have attacked the whole country?
Melvin: It could still be some kind of attack. Korea, or something.
Landlord: Give me a break.

Clive, the psychologist:  Here look out the window, look at it. There's something not right about it. Can you see it?
Melvin: What the hell are you talking, about? It's just fog.
Clive: No, it's....
Melvin: It's what?
Clive: I don't know. Forget it.

Landlord: How's the patient doing?
George: I'm  alright, just a bit dizzy.

Peter and Marjorie toddle over to the action.

Marjorie: I'll look after him. I was a Nurse in the second world war.
Landlord: Really?
Marjorie: No, not really young man. I'm not that old. The cheek of the young man, Peter!. Have you heard this, Peter? He's saying I'm ancient.
Peter: I heard. Terrible it is. Grey discrimination. Young people have no respect.
They both chuckle.
Marjorie: ALright,luvvie. What have you done, banged your head?
Kim: We had a car crash. He may have hit his head on the dashboard.
Marjorie: That's a bad business. We never crashed did we, Peter?
Peter: no, never.
Marjorie: We were always too careful.
Peter: I think we had better coordination than young folks these days, we had to do more with our hands.
Marjorie: That's right. Young folk sspend too long on their devices these days. They're not focused.
Peter: They're like Zombies.

They chuckle again.

Marjorie: Let's have a look at this.

SFX: Peeling off the wounds cover.

Marjorie: OOooh, that's nasty. You need to see the Hospitsl with that.
Kim: There are no Ambualances. And we don't know where it is.
Marjorie: It's only over the road. We can take him, can't we Peter?
Peter: I don't see why not.
You can't see out there.
Marjorie: It's only a bit of fog. Wecan handle it. Peter was a Frogman in the WOrld War, weren't you Peter?

He laughs.

Peter: That's right.

They check outsde...it's far too foggy to go.

Out of the fog, some figures loom.

Freddie and his gang enter the Pub.
Arguments begin because the Landlord and the regulars don't want him there.
Freddie refuses to leave.
Just serve us the drinks, fat lad.
The situation becomes hostile.
Husband doesn't want to get involved. Worried he might lose the fight and no-one  else in the pub is willing to help.
Clive: Just serve them.
Landlord does.


CUT TO HOSPITAL:

Jane and her partner have made their way to the hopsital with the injured and the passers by.
JANE: I didn't want to move them, but the car was on fire and we didn't have a choice.
Doctors and Nurses make checks on the injured and whisk them away for treatment.
The passers by want to know what to do now. They don't know where they are. She advises them to stay in the Hospital until the Fog clears and thanks them all for the help.


CUT TO PUB:

Freddie and his gang want more. Don't want to pay.
Freddie makes his way round the bar to serve himself and his friends when the Landlord refuses.
Landlord calls his wife, Jane. Our Police Officer.

CUT TO HOSPITAL:

Mobile phone rings. It's her husband.
Tells her there's a problem with local gangs in the pub. Could turn nasty.
Can't you handle it?
(Pause) There's a few of them.
Alright, we'll be there.

She calls dispatch.
Got an incident over at the Garrick's Head.
Isn't that your place?
Yeah.

They make their way throguh the fog.
More foggy weirdness.
Some strange incident with a passer by.

POSSIBILITY they meet David here, lost in the Fog and he wants to walk with them. He's disoriented.

Then they get to the Pub.


She and her Partner deal with Freddie, who seems to want to fight.
Her partner's son is part of the gang they're facing.
Partner takes his Taser out.
She knows his address it's not far.  A grown boy like you isn't scared of a little Fog, are you? Do you want me to hold your hand and walk you home?
Or hardcore: There are serious incidents going on , you either leave now in perfect health, or you leave with your face in pieces. It's up to you.
You can't say that.
Make a complaint to the Police Complaints Authority if you like. Once your wounds have  healed.
Freddie laughs.

Here, have your pint back. He throws the glass behind the bar, shattering it.

Then leaves with his friends.
Jane's partner moves to get his son.
Jane: Leave it for now.

ON TV

Continuing with the breaking news about the fog.
Reports of major incidents across the country.
Major pile ups on M1, M60.
Government recommends people don't travel.
Stay where you are until the fog has passed.
Commercial flights delayed.
Schools Shut. Who parents should call if they are worried?

IN PUB:

Jane  talks with husband and daughter.
Where's Michael?
Shit. He was at  school. He must still be out there.
He tries calling.
No answer.
He's not answering.
Call the school.
Maybe they're all still there.
He calls the school.
Headmaster tells him that Michael wasn't in today.
Where the Hell is he?
She asks Abigail (Michael's sister, and her daughter) if she had any idea of where he is.
Reluctantly, she tells them that he sometimes goes to the Park after school. Chassen Park
Doing what?
What do kids like Michael do...watch stupid Youtube videos and try to smoke cigarettes.
Fuck.

She tells them to put all the lights on upstairs. Maybe stick some christmas lights out front, so that people, and Michael, who are lost in the fog can find their way here. .

People in the pub mention the injured man, George.
His condition has taken a turn for the worse. Looks like he's severely concussed after all. Losing consciousness.
She suggests they escort the injured guy over to the Hospital.
(George will go into a coma, leading to a choice Kim has to make to stay with him in the Hospital or leave him and go to attempted safety with the main gang.)

Dispatch is calling them back to work/for an update on the situation.
Car is out of action blocking the road to prevent further accidents.
Back up is on the way to deal with the situation.
Talks to them about her missing son.
They're getting a lot of calls from people worried about their families and from people trapped in the fog.
Does she have any ideas?
They could mark out the roads, major landmarks, maybe but radios out to tell people where they are.
Can they tell local media to run with it and get people putting up Christmas lights and to tell people to stay indoors as much as possible?
Does she think that's necessary? Surely the fog will go in a couple of hours?
Maybe.
Need to speak with the Meteorological guys, see when this is going to pass. Never seen anything like it.
They agree. They will keep her updated.
Meanwhile, they agree that she can go look for her son.


CUT TO OUTSIDE:

She and her partner help Kim and George across the road to the Accident and Emergency.

Ambulances and Police Vans go past, sirens screaming.





Revision History (5 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Scar Tissue Films  -  September 3rd, 2019, 5:08pm
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LC
Posted: September 1st, 2019, 8:32pm Report to Moderator
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Looking good, Rick. Will scrutinise it more later.

Just a word about names: I'm not overly fond of boring Michelle for a name, but beggars can't be choosers.  Names change depending on fashion and decade. You could argue for her age we'd need to look up names a decade ago for popularity but I'd say we just go for popular now for all cast members. I obviously could/should have thrown you a name and age if I'm interested in writing said characters.

FYI: going forward if anyone's interested.

https://www.manchestereveningn.....-manchester-15186062
http://www.bounty.com/pregnanc.....anchester-baby-names

I think Michelle should be: Freya, Isla, or Olivia. Age: 11, or 12.

What exactly is the plan re writing?
I'm married to a guy from your neck of the woods so have picked up a lot of the local lingo (without going over the top). That said I'd be interested in writing the young Girl, Blind Man, and Freddie (Freddy) and his gang specifically.

Just as an added thing... While I was looking at names I came across this:
http://worldpopulationreview.com/world-cities/manchester-population/

It is estimated that more than 150 million men and boys in the world bear the name Muhammad due to its relationship to the Islamic prophet Muhammad. Muhammad was the most popular baby boys' name in four regions of England and Wales, including in London and the West Midlands, according to 2013 official statistics.

Also, so we're accurately representative:

The City of Manchester has the highest proportion of non-white people of any district in Greater Manchester. The 2011 census found the racial and ethnic composition of Manchester was:

White: 66.7% (59.3% White British, 2.4% White Irish, 0.1% Irish Traveller or Gypsy, 4.9% other white)
Mixed race: 4.7% (1.8% white and black Caribbean, 0.9% white and black African, 1.0% white and Asian, 1.0% other mixed race)
Asian: 17.1% (8.5% Pakistani, 2.7% Chinese, 2.3% Indian, 1.3% Bangladeshi, 2.3% other Asian)
Black: 8.6% (5.1% African, 1.6% other black)
1.9% Arab
1.2% other ethnicity
Since 2001, the share of Christians in Manchester has fallen from 62.4% to 48.7%, while the percentage of people with no religious affiliation increased from 16% to 25.4%. The percentage of Muslims has increased as well from 9.1% to 15.8%. Manchester has the largest Jewish population in Britain outside of London.

Manchester also has a percentage of gay and lesbian people that is higher than the English national average: 0.23% of people were in a same-sex civil partnership, compared to the national average of 0.16%.

There are several areas that serve as a center for ethnic minority populations, including Rusholme, Cheetham Hill, Moss Side and Longsight. There is also a Chinatown with the third-largest Chinese population in Europe.

...
Additional story strands:

I like the previous subplot suggestion of crime under the cloak of darkness - in this case the fog. Whoever was a serial killer before (maybe not that extreme) still is etc. The fog could be making the job easier.

And, as things move along what about racial/cultural tensions & divides - along the line of some suggesting the fog is terrorist related?

Just throwing things out there.

I'm still a bit ambivalent about what seems to me to be a huge ambitious project here, but you can definitely count on me to contribute - even if on a more minor scale than some.  See how I go... Does that work?


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Posted: September 1st, 2019, 8:47pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from hawkeye
Can we get a roll call on who is involved in the writing?

So far, as a certainty, I think it's:

Rick
Rene
Gary
Frank
Jordan

Zack seemed like was a maybe based on the timing.  Libby?  Paul?  I may have missed a couple as well in the midst of all the threads.


Yep, count me in as a bit of a nervous player, (like I said in my prev post,) on behalf of the female contingent.  



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Quoted from LC


Yep, count me in as a bit of a nervous player, (like I said in my prev post,) on behalf of the female contingent.  



Libby, can you PM me your email address? I've started a Google Doc with everything to date in one place so we can all easily find things and edit as we go.

Gary


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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Posted: September 1st, 2019, 9:36pm Report to Moderator
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Done...

Thanks, Gary.

P.S. Wow, great work! Looking it over now.


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Zack
Posted: September 1st, 2019, 11:33pm Report to Moderator
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Impressive work, Gary. Definitely gives me a good idea of how exactly this will be structured. Really think this is coming together pretty well.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 3:47am Report to Moderator
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@Libby. I'll reply in full when I've got a break from work.

So far I consider the names to be placeholders. Michelle is too close to Michael, anyway. Olivia is the one out of your list that appeals to me the most.

In terms of the racial make up of the characters : I mentioned that (in admittedly less detail) in the opening post.

Davyhulme itself is largely white. Which doesn't mean it shouldn't still be a diverse cast(it needs to be) . The Hospital is the best place to introduce diversity, in realistic terms (if that matters). The Pub in real life us a significantly less diverse place than it could be, but of course people can walk in who wouldn't normally be there.

The racial stuff is problematic on many levels and has to be handled with extreme sensitivity.

In truth, the reality of what would actually happen is probably illegal to even type in this age of oppression.

The truth of matters is that any group with large numbers, particularly of young men, organised by a central belief system that disseminated information in a top down manner... Would have a significantly increased chance of survival over other, less organised groups and less "certain" groups.

Which probably explains much of human history.

We'll have to deal with that very carefully.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 3:59am Report to Moderator
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Like I said before, I ultimately want to end this story on an optimistic note. Humanity pulling together its multiple strands, and rising above the fog together.

Religions, politics, scientists, male/female pulling together in what is probably some kind of 'Hallowed Secularism' and putting together the new seeds of a bright future for everyone.

So I feel comfortable going to some pretty dark places along the way, but it's got to be done right.
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Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 5:04am Report to Moderator
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Say no more, Rick. I agree. Make it about people pulling together - (amidst darkness) more about character and personality without other complications like race, religion, etc., even though that can be incidental.


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While having a racially diverse (or more precisely, accent diverse) cast helps distinguish a large number of voices for the audience, there is the practical concern of what actors the production company can expect to bring to the table. We have nothing to worry about if they’ve got their own Rich Little or James Doohan who can do several voices and accents, but I wouldn’t want to assume that.


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Frank, check your email -- sent you a Google doc.

By the way, all, I'm still editing the doc.  Feel free to do so yourselves.  Most of that is Rick's work which I'm editing for brevity and adding some of my own touches.  But it's a shareable, editable doc.  I'm out most of the day today (Labor Day here in the U.S., so I'm going to play golf in 100 degree heat!) but will edit more tonight.

Jordan, get me your email address and I'll forward to you as well.

Gary


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Scar Tissue Films
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That wall of text above looks a bit intimidating.

Chopping it down to encourage responses:

1, Massive crash caused by Fog. These crashes are happening all over the city/country.
2. Jane, our Police Officer, and her Partner rescue people and take them to the nearby hospital on foot with the help of passers-by and block off the road with their police car to prevent further accidents.
3. They are called to the local Pub to help break up a situation, which they do successfully.
4. In the Pub, Jane discovers that her son is missing.


So, current situation:

Lots of  horrific crashes. Too many for the Emergency services to cope with.
Large number of people phoning the Police as they are trapped in the Fog, or worried about missing relatives.
First, very slight intimations that the fog has psychological effects. Very slight/realistic.
Her own son is missing in the fog.

I'm proceeding under the assumption that the Traffic situation is being dealt with by the Police Force largely off screen. We'll get updates on it on the TV from the Pub, and through Jane's conversations with Dispatch/her superiors and we'll see the results of those conversations on the streets around us.

This frees her to search for her son, and other people lost along the way.

She will keep in touch with Dispatch and/or her husband on the Phone allowing her to describe the situation, and to link back to the Pub.

The search for the missing son will lead into some other story. Probably to do with rising crime or some killer on the loose in the fog.


Looking at what we have I am of the  opinion that, once the beats we've got are expanded we've already got Episode One and more.

I'm thinking the best use of the next week is to slowly fill in what we have and end the week with a Pilot episode. We can then read it, improve it and perfect the style.

I regard hitting that point to be a successful challenge. After that we can talk about taking it forwards for those that are interested.

Does that seem sensible?
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Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 10:52am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
That wall of text above looks a bit intimidating.

Chopping it down to encourage responses:

1, Massive crash caused by Fog. These crashes are happening all over the city/country.
2. Jane, our Police Officer, and her Partner rescue people and take them to the nearby hospital on foot with the help of passers-by and block off the road with their police car to prevent further accidents.
3. They are called to the local Pub to help break up a situation, which they do successfully.
4. In the Pub, Jane discovers that her son is missing.


So, current situation:

Lots of  horrific crashes. Too many for the Emergency services to cope with.
Large number of people phoning the Police as they are trapped in the Fog, or worried about missing relatives.
First, very slight intimations that the fog has psychological effects. Very slight/realistic.
Her own son is missing in the fog.

I'm proceeding under the assumption that the Traffic situation is being dealt with by the Police Force largely off screen. We'll get updates on it on the TV from the Pub, and through Jane's conversations with Dispatch/her superiors and we'll see the results of those conversations on the streets around us.

This frees her to search for her son, and other people lost along the way.

She will keep in touch with Dispatch and/or her husband on the Phone allowing her to describe the situation, and to link back to the Pub.

The search for the missing son will lead into some other story. Probably to do with rising crime or some killer on the loose in the fog.


Looking at what we have I am of the  opinion that, once the beats we've got are expanded we've already got Episode One and more.

I'm thinking the best use of the next week is to slowly fill in what we have and end the week with a Pilot episode. We can then read it, improve it and perfect the style.

I regard hitting that point to be a successful challenge. After that we can talk about taking it forwards for those that are interested.

Does that seem sensible?


All sounds good to me.


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Zack
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Let me know if there is anything specific you'd like me to handle, be that further character development or creating some action/ suspense sequences. Like I said, you've got me until the 8th, then I gotta get a draft of my feature finished. I'll still try to help you out during that week, but the next 7 days are when I will be able to contribute most.


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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

That wall of text above looks a bit intimidating.

It's supposed to be. We will trim it down later.

Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

So, current situation:
Lots of  horrific crashes. Too many for the Emergency services to cope with.
Large number of people phoning the Police as they are trapped in the Fog, or worried about missing relatives.

The phone lines should be busy when they try to call for help. I like the idea of a football/soccer game being canceled due to fog. The game can be in London or somewhere far away to show that the fog is global.

Quoted from Scar Tissue Films

I'm thinking the best use of the next week is to slowly fill in what we have and end the week with a Pilot episode. We can then read it, improve it and perfect the style.

I regard hitting that point to be a successful challenge. After that we can talk about taking it forwards for those that are interested.

Does that seem sensible?

Perfectly sensible

The beauty of this challenge is that we can write what we want following the outline established by Rick, but ultimately it's Rick's call on what comes out of the mouths of the voice actors.

I feel a lot less pressure to make everything perfect in my head before submitting it.
I'm going to do my best to create something that I'm proud of, but I know it'll change.

I don't speak Davyhulmeian lingo, so any dialogue I write will be with a Southern Californian accent.
Please feel free to remove any "dude"s, or "totally"s, or putting the word "the" in front of any freeway.

-Jordan


Read my scripts here:
SOCIAL EXPERIMENT 8pg-Drama
THE BRIDGE 8pg-Horror
SCHEISSE 6pg-Horror/Comedy
MADE FOR EACH OTHER-FILMED
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@Frank There are many insanely talented voice actors out there. The success of the podcast will rely on the quality of the voice talent, and of course the foley, sound mixing, editing...

Of course, that's all out of our hands. We can only focus on delivering material worthy of great talent.

@Gary nice job putting that doc together and getting it out to us. I was wondering if a discord or something might be productive but I like the google doc approach. As long as we don't go down two separate paths with some people working on stuff posted here and others working on the doc, we should be more efficient.

Episode 1 is nearing fruition. We need to know where it's going now.

What are each character's arcs through season one, if they arc?
What topic or theme are the next episodes going to tackle?
What is the fog going to do in the next few episodes?
What other weather might happen in season one?
How are other nations being affected, and when?

I had a thought that maybe this should be set in December, so events are leading up to Christmas. More stress early on, more worry, busier time of year for travel, cold getting colder, religious time of year, and the audience would feel it. That Christmas episode could be particularly bleak.


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ReneC
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Quoted from Nomad


The phone lines should be busy when they try to call for help. I like the idea of a football/soccer game being canceled due to fog. The game can be in London or somewhere far away to show that the fog is global.


I think there should be a football game on in the bar from the start and they have to call it due to fog. It's hard to use music in podcasts unless we want to pay for the rights, but a sports event can be made up pretty easily and would explain why there isn't any music on in the bar. After that, it's news or nothing as everyone's attention is on the situation, not enjoying music.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Yes, I think there's mention of a sports game on TV in the mass blurb.

It's what makes them realise it's widespread and makes them put the news on.
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Quoted from Zack
Let me know if there is anything specific you'd like me to handle, be that further character development or creating some action/ suspense sequences. Like I said, you've got me until the 8th, then I gotta get a draft of my feature finished. I'll still try to help you out during that week, but the next 7 days are when I will be able to contribute most.


You can start at the beginning if you like and have a go at the accident scene which kicks it all off. It's probably the most challenging bit, trying to convey the sense of what's happening.

The vague logistics are that people are driving near the pub, including Kim and George. A car is making a right turn (we drive on the left here)  as the fog suddenly rolls in. A bus ploughs in to the car, probably flipping in and pinning it under the bus. Then other cars pile into the back from both directions, and other cars into the back of them, including George and Kim.

There's no need to describe all that, of course... Jane can explain that to Dispatch on arrival. You want to try to get the sense of the mayhem, fear, pain and disorientation of the crash. The numerous voices calling for help, screams and just enough information that the audience understands roughly what's happening.
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Scar Tissue Films
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Quoted from ReneC
@Frank There are many insanely talented voice actors out there. The success of the podcast will rely on the quality of the voice talent, and of course the foley, sound mixing, editing...

Of course, that's all out of our hands. We can only focus on delivering material worthy of great talent.

@Gary nice job putting that doc together and getting it out to us. I was wondering if a discord or something might be productive but I like the google doc approach. As long as we don't go down two separate paths with some people working on stuff posted here and others working on the doc, we should be more efficient.

Episode 1 is nearing fruition. We need to know where it's going now.

What are each character's arcs through season one, if they arc?
What topic or theme are the next episodes going to tackle?
What is the fog going to do in the next few episodes?
What other weather might happen in season one?
How are other nations being affected, and when?

I had a thought that maybe this should be set in December, so events are leading up to Christmas. More stress early on, more worry, busier time of year for travel, cold getting colder, religious time of year, and the audience would feel it. That Christmas episode could be particularly bleak.


Good questions. I'll throw some ideas out tomorrow.
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LC
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 8:13pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films


To Zack:

You can start at the beginning if you like and have a go at the accident scene which kicks it all off. It's probably the most challenging bit, trying to convey the sense of what's happening.

The vague logistics are that people are driving near the pub, including Kim and George. A car is making a right turn (we drive on the left here)  as the fog suddenly rolls in. A bus ploughs in to the car, probably flipping in and pinning it under the bus. Then other cars pile into the back from both directions, and other cars into the back of them, including George and Kim.

There's no need to describe all that, of course... Jane can explain that to Dispatch on arrival. You want to try to get the sense of the mayhem, fear, pain and disorientation of the crash. The numerous voices calling for help, screams and just enough information that the audience understands roughly what's happening.


Zack, if you like, get started on the opening, then shoot it over to me. I'll have a go too and then we can pool our efforts, add colloquialisms, tone, atmos, etc.

What do you think?
I'll PM you my email.

Actually, Gazza, a thought that you might want to include everyone's email in that Google doc.

Rick, working on the Pilot ep sounds like a great idea.


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Zack
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 8:57pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from LC


Zack, if you like, get started on the opening, then shoot it over to me. I'll have a go too and then we can pool our efforts, add colloquialisms, tone, atmos, etc.

What do you think?
I'll PM you my email.

Actually, Gazza, a thought that you might want to include everyone's email in that Google doc.

Rick, working on the Pilot ep sounds like a great idea.


Alright, I'll see what I can do for the opening sequence.

Have we settled on wether or not a narrator will be a part of this?



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ReneC
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 9:04pm Report to Moderator
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I think the narrator should be used, but sparingly. Do as much as you can without, which should be the vast majority. Describe through dialogue, use exposition, and when you can't avoid it use a narrator.

I'd also use a narrator to first describe the fog. Make it dramatic. Channel your inner H.G.Wells.

That's my view anyway.


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Zack
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 9:18pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from ReneC
I think the narrator should be used, but sparingly. Do as much as you can without, which should be the vast majority. Describe through dialogue, use exposition, and when you can't avoid it use a narrator.

I'd also use a narrator to first describe the fog. Make it dramatic. Channel your inner H.G.Wells.

That's my view anyway.


Thinking I'll open with a brief narration before diving into Jane and Peter responding to the pile up. Just really not sure how I'm supposed to write this when it's audio only. Gonna think on this tonight, see what I can come up with.



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LC
Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 9:38pm Report to Moderator
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Well, you have my help, so just dive in, Zack - I will too - and then like I said we can pool efforts and perfect, then put it up for scrutiny from others partaking. Whatcha reckon?

P.S. PM'd you my email @.




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Posted: September 2nd, 2019, 10:32pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from LC
Well, you have my help, so just dive in, Zack - I will too - and then like I said we can pool efforts and perfect, then put it up for scrutiny from others partaking. Whatcha reckon?

P.S. PM'd you my email @.




Emailed you a very rough draft of the opening sequence. Wrote it on a document program on my phone, so please excuse the odd format. Let me know what you think.


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 3:30am Report to Moderator
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Just a gentle warning on the opening, building on what Rene said earlier in the thread.

It needs to establish Jane as the main character, so be wary of cutting away from her story for too long at the start.

There is plenty of time to establish the other characters in the pub.
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Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 5:13am Report to Moderator
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Rick, just to clarify though, there's no hard and fast rule says the main character has to appear in the very first scene of the opening is there? She's there obviously, but there's an ensemble of characters hit by that fog on the road intermingled with her prominent appearance?

I'm gonna read the entirety of this thread again and Gary's summary.

Zack's having a go at the opening, as am I.

Nothing to stop Rene, or anyone else from giving it a go too, right?

I mean at least to start with we should pool our talents for the optimal Opening and see what works most effectively from a general consensus POV?

I won't be able to really get into it though till tomorrow afternoon probably. The dentist comes first unfortunately, ick.

One other question: If someone manages to download a format template (transcript) for one of the popular fiction podcasts I'd be grateful - one that looks good and is efficient and easy to work with. So many I've looked at so far look messy and it'd be good to be able to work with an application that makes the writing easier.

Not complaining, just saying...


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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 6:19am Report to Moderator
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Have a go and see and see what works, if you like.

When I did the original vomit beat sketch, Rene felt that if focused too much on George and Kim's plight and gave the impression they were the main characters, so I restructured it, adding a bigger accident and establishing Jane's credentials immediately (essentially a 'Save the Cat" moment, though that wasn't a conscious thing).

It made sense to me simply because we've got to focus the attention primarily'somewhere. It's just a question of balance, though.
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Scar Tissue Films
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P. S

Stephen posted a couple of templates somewhere on the chronology thread.

Rene also posted a link on this thread to a podcast, and on their website they had links to their scripts.

It's basically just:

Libby : Why, what terrible weather we're having.

SFX: A tornado in the background.


Everything is audio. Anything outside of the dialogue must necessarily be describing some sound effects. So as long as you make it clear what we're hearing.. Even if you go over the top in describing it, is fine as far as I'm concerned.
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Zack
Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 7:30am Report to Moderator
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Alright, so Libby and I are taking a stab at the opening scene with George and Kim just as they are about to have the accident.

Are there any others characters that NEED to be in this scene. Obviously Jane and her Partner, Peter?, but are there any others? Libby mentioned a little girl named Olivia. Who is she?

Any named/important characters on the bus? How badly is George injured during the accident? Is he concious? Can he walk?

I'm at work at the moment, but I'm gonna reread this thread whenever I get some free time.


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Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 7:34am Report to Moderator
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Michelle AKA Olivia, Zack.

Our blind character with his guide dog help her when she's lost.
Sorry about that. I should have been clear in my email.


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Quoted from LC
Michelle AKA Olivia, Zack.

Our blind character with his guide dog help her when she's lost.
Sorry about that. I should have been clear in my email.


So is Michelle the dog? Or the blind person? Lol

And is this character part of the accident? Sorry, it's been kinda tough keeping up with this thread.


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Scar Tissue Films
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I did wonder whether the bus involved in the accident could be driven by Melvin because he happens to be a bus driver. So he starts the story traumatised which might make his character more interesting.

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Good point, Rick. I was just reading the precis again and this other bus driver appeared in the pub, so yes, agreed. Melvin should be one and the same, adds much more him being traumatised etc.


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Posted: September 3rd, 2019, 8:39am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Zack
So is Michelle the dog? Or the blind person? Lol And is this character part of the accident? Sorry, it's been kinda tough keeping up with this thread.

Yeah, it's a bit that way.   At the moment, anyway...




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If someone could PM me a comprehensive list of all the characters involved in the opening sequence, I'd be extremely grateful.


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It's sunny here in Vancouver and I have fog rolling in...

Method writing.  


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Scar Tissue Films
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CHARACTERS MAKING THEIR WAY TO THE PUB IN DRAMATIC OPENING:

George Prescott, 26, recently geology graduate, is on a date with Kim Libby, 25, American on a work visa. George is soon heading to Cornwall to work in the re-opening tin mine. His grandfather was a miner, but George will be working in a lab. Accident Victims who appear out of the Fog after a car crash.

MICHELLE/OLIVIA HIGSON. Lost child.  Represents  the child's innocent view and completes the age groups. Plot...trying to re-unite her with her parents.

BILL/NASIM (Gary called him Nasim): Blind man with his guide dog.  Represents the blind in the story...unaffected by the fog as he can't see it.

These people meet up outside and are lead by the blind man to the pub.

Melvin O'Donnell, 54, bus driver, divorced. A regular, someone who knows the city well and knows people along his route. Leaves the pub to try to find his son along with his ex-wife? Represents Working Class man. Socialism. Maybe a little bit racist? Got common sense, but not a lot of education and has no real way of evaluating what's true or not true in terms of the science, psychology, economics etc.  He crashes his  bus and is deeply traumatised.

Jane and her Partner are attending the accident.  There's already a Peter in the story (an old guy). Better if you change the Partner's name to something else.
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Did another pass at the draft. Again, writing this on my phone so the format may be a bit wonky. Anyone who wants to give it a look, send me your email.

Libby, sending it your way now.


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Okedoke Zack, got it!

But... It's past the witching hour here in Oz so I'll check it out proper in the morning.


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Quoted from LC
Okedoke Zack, got it!

But... It's past the witching hour here in Oz so I'll check it out proper in the morning.


No prob.


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Quoted from ReneC
@Frank There are many insanely talented voice actors out there. The success of the podcast will rely on the quality of the voice talent, and of course the foley, sound mixing, editing...

Of course, that's all out of our hands. We can only focus on delivering material worthy of great talent.

@Gary nice job putting that doc together and getting it out to us. I was wondering if a discord or something might be productive but I like the google doc approach. As long as we don't go down two separate paths with some people working on stuff posted here and others working on the doc, we should be more efficient.

Episode 1 is nearing fruition. We need to know where it's going now.

What are each character's arcs through season one, if they arc?
What topic or theme are the next episodes going to tackle?
What is the fog going to do in the next few episodes?
What other weather might happen in season one?
How are other nations being affected, and when?

I had a thought that maybe this should be set in December, so events are leading up to Christmas. More stress early on, more worry, busier time of year for travel, cold getting colder, religious time of year, and the audience would feel it. That Christmas episode could be particularly bleak.


OK, I've been looking at things for a bit.

I think there's a bit of a problem.

Originally, I was planning to start about 6 days into the fog, starting perhaps with a town Hall meeting and everyone arguing about what to do, but the general consensus was to start as the fog came in, which is a nice dramatic opening and made sense.

I think I'm now seeing why I subconsciously wanted to start a bit later; Nothing really happens till the crops start to fail. The emergency services would try to clear roads, get deliveries through, people would largely stay in their homes until things go crazy.

It feels like whatever we do, it'll just be stretching things out, or following storylines that will ultimately matter little.

My current thoughts are that we set up the arcs to a certain level, find a place where it makes sense to cut, and then jump the story forwards a few days or a week.

EG

Line of dialogue from sometime saying I don't know why everyone's worrying, it's just a bit of fog and it'll be gone in a couple of days.

This could be a character saying it, or a metrologist on the TV.

Cut to a week later

Mayhem in the supermarkets., TV announcer talking about Day 7 of the fog etc.

What do you think?



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FrankM
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Makes sense to introduce the Fog as it rolls in suddenly and some of the initial chaos that emergency services struggle to handle, but manage.

The appearance of the Fog and the initial response are actually equivalent to the “ordinary world” phase of feature arc... realization that it isn’t going anywhere is more properly thought of as the “inciting incident.” Doing it this way illustrates that the big problem is the Fog, not that the particular town we’re following is incompetent.


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Quoted from FrankM
Makes sense to introduce the Fog as it rolls in suddenly and some of the initial chaos that emergency services struggle to handle, but manage.

The appearance of the Fog and the initial response are actually equivalent to the “ordinary world” phase of feature arc... realization that it isn’t going anywhere is more properly thought of as the “inciting incident.” Doing it this way illustrates that the big problem is the Fog, not that the particular town we’re following is incompetent.


I agree, but what I'm talking about is jumping forwards in time after that.

The story strands for the first week are pretty weak.

Cops basically taxiing people home.
People reuniting with family.
Bits of localised crime.
Minor setting in of fog depression.
Government taking control of roads to deliver essential supplies.
Difficulty of shopping.
Culminating in the realisation crops are wilting.

We can introduce new serious crime, like the serial killer we've talked about.

We could accelerate the 'are there things in the fog' scenario. Some people who are unusually susceptible to the fog are seeing things, start phoning up local radio etc and cause people to start panicking.

Those two things can also be related.

So if we are sticking with a rigid time frame, those two things are really our only option.

That some people are unusually susceptible to the fog, and start acting out more quickly.

The alternative is a well prepared jump forwards a few days/week.
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OK, so let's assume we're continuing directly with what we have.

Open story strands:

1. Car crashes everywhere. Emergency services and maybe military need to clear the roads and escort stranded home.
2. Many thousands of people, if not millions stuck away from home in train stations and airports.
3. Lots of local people stuck in the fog.. But can probably get home with a bit of patience.. They just need to find a recognizable place then follow close to walls.
4. Michelle/ Olivia separated from parents.
5. Michael is lost.
6. Freddie and friends are out in the mood to cause trouble.
7. People stuck in the pub.
8. Marjorie will need an insulin shot tomorrow morning. Bill can take her home But...
9. George getting to the hospital.
10. Clive starting to feel psychological effects of fog. Maybe there are others.
11. First meeting of COBRA Committee. Probably slightly lighthearted, joking as to why they're there and the Transport minister hasn't fixed it all himself.
12. Conflict between Jane's partner and his son who is hanging around with Freddie.
13. World News. Need some very troubling occurrences from places worldwide to establish the seriousness. Plane crash? What else?
Then we have the people coming into the pub later :


Teacher looking for Melvin because of lost son.
Someone unusually affected by the fog.. David our schizophrenic.

He can come in late at night having spent all day in it. And think there's more to it than just fog, but he's not sure.

Michael who has also been stuck in it all day can say he had a strange feeling as well.

Local Radio has phone ins from the first people discussing slightly strange things...all of which can be put down to over active imaginations.

These story strands are basically episode 2.

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P. S tomorrow morning I'll start two new threads.

One for Episode One discussing the writing of the pilot.

And one to continue discussing Episode 2.

I'll put the cast list up and we'll decide definitively on names, as well to end the confusion.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
OK, so let's assume we're continuing directly with what we have.

Open story strands:

1. Car crashes everywhere. Emergency services and maybe military need to clear the roads and escort stranded home.
2. Many thousands of people, if not millions stuck away from home in train stations and airports.
3. Lots of local people stuck in the fog.. But can probably get home with a bit of patience.. They just need to find a recognizable place then follow close to walls.
4. Michelle/ Olivia separated from parents.
5. Michael is lost.
6. Freddie and friends are out in the mood to cause trouble.
7. People stuck in the pub.
8. Marjorie will need an insulin shot tomorrow morning. Bill can take her home But...
9. George getting to the hospital.
10. Clive starting to feel psychological effects of fog. Maybe there are others.
11. First meeting of COBRA Committee. Probably slightly lighthearted, joking as to why they're there and the Transport minister hasn't fixed it all himself.
12. Conflict between Jane's partner and his son who is hanging around with Freddie.
13. World News. Need some very troubling occurrences from places worldwide to establish the seriousness. Plane crash? What else?
Then we have the people coming into the pub later :


Teacher looking for Melvin because of list son.
Sometime unusually affected by the fog.. David our schizophrenic.

He can come in late at night having spent all day in it. And think there's more to it than just fog, but he's not sure.

Michael whose also been stuck in it all day can say he had a strange feeling as well.

This is enough to get them to turn to local radio where they hear other, perhaps exaggerated tales of things people have seen, unsettling them and the audience.

Plus, potentially a killer or otherwise dangerous lunatic who is unusually affected by the fog.

These story strands are basically episode 2.


I'd hold off on the psychological effects of the fog for the moment. It's too soon. As we established, fog isn't unusual, but prolonged bad weather affects many people greatly.

As for the COBRA committee, I'd use that as the time jump. Initially it's a local problem, but as the fog spreads and worsens it becomes a national problem, and then an international one as the situation becomes apparent. We should start local, then jump to three or four days later with a higher level view of the new situation. When we come back to our local characters we can see how they've fared over those days, and the psychological effects will be apparent right away.


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Scar Tissue Films
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Reading the plan, and trying to fix it up a bit, it occurred to me that Olivia/Michelle (she's going to be Olivia from now on) should be the daughter of the two people seriously injured in the crash. She was small enough to crawl from the accident and was fortunately not hurt.

This means she can be 'adopted' by the main group if her parents die in Hospital.
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Quoted from Scar Tissue Films
Reading the plan, and trying to fix it up a bit, it occurred to me that Olivia/Michelle (she's going to be Olivia from now on) should be the daughter of the two people seriously injured in the crash. She was small enough to crawl from the accident and was fortunately not hurt.

This means she can be 'adopted' by the main group if her parents die in Hospital.


Is this the same crash that involves Melvin and George and Kim? Or another couple? I'm getting confused.

Having Melvin be the bus driver that Kim runs into might be difficult. He would be at the accident the longest, he wouldn't arrive until much later. He could be in the pub already off duty and drinking and the driver in the accident was a close friend who didn't survive the crash. Maybe it was even supposed to be his shift but he swapped to watch the game. Equally traumatic.


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Quoted from ReneC


Is this the same crash that involves Melvin and George and Kim? Or another couple? I'm getting confused.

Having Melvin be the bus driver that Kim runs into might be difficult. He would be at the accident the longest, he wouldn't arrive until much later. He could be in the pub already off duty and drinking and the driver in the accident was a close friend who didn't survive the crash. Maybe it was even supposed to be his shift but he swapped to watch the game. Equally traumatic.


It's all the same crash.

It's very near the pub.

The Police officers on the scene leave to carry the injured to the hospital because all the ambulances are headed to the motorways.

So while normally he'd wait around to give a statement, there's noone there, so he could simply head off to the nearby pub, not really sure what to do.

He can't go home, so it makes sense. He's just stuck outside.
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Quoted from ReneC


I'd hold off on the psychological effects of the fog for the moment. It's too soon. As we established, fog isn't unusual, but prolonged bad weather affects many people greatly.

As for the COBRA committee, I'd use that as the time jump. Initially it's a local problem, but as the fog spreads and worsens it becomes a national problem, and then an international one as the situation becomes apparent. We should start local, then jump to three or four days later with a higher level view of the new situation. When we come back to our local characters we can see how they've fared over those days, and the psychological effects will be apparent right away.


It's not so much the fog, it's the power of suggestion.

In a world without fog, the majority believe in ghosts, huge numbers believe aliens are visiting us, there's millions of subscriber's to conspiracy theories (some extremely odd), people who try to talk to spirits and a million other things. That's just ordinary people, not people with impaired perception.

So all the weirdness already exists in real life. It only needs a spark for it to gradually become more believable.

From the first minute rumours would be circulating on the Internet. Especially Governmental conspiracies. People would get spooked by the atmosphere and pass their fear on etc. It's similar to creeping people out round a camp fire with ghost stories. Someone sows a seed and the mind starts filling in the blanks.

The feeling that there might be something in the fog is crucial, so the seeds need to be sown for that.

We have to start slowly, but the first hint of the creepy atmosphere needs to start percolating through. Sound is different, unknown figures lurk in the fog, streetlamps cast weird, distorted shadows.

Anyway, its getting late for me.

Tomorrow I'll clean everything up so it's not so confusing and set up new threads, like I said.
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