Week 1 – Drafting

Posted: January 15, 2011 in Uncategorized

Our group’s first week on the Agents of Atlas assignment was mainly centered on brainstorming the overall structure and style of the project. We have agreed that it would be best to present it as a mini-series (about six 60 minute episodes) on premium cable with an option for renewal if the series is successful. HBO is the immediate choice, but broadcast stations such as AMC and Showcase would also suffice in regards to our target audience. The general feeling of our group is to aim for a somewhat dark tone with gritty violence. However, we are also planning to embrace the camp value.  Besides the origin story of Agents of Atlas, some members of the group have gone on to read other instalments of the series.

In terms of the characters not much has been decided on casting since it is still early in the brainstorming process.  But during a session we decided that we should emphasize to the panel that the main characters are not typical of Marvel Comics. They are essentially the b-team of Marvel and “archetypes of pulp adventure” as Jeff Parker claimed in his introduction of the comic. We do not wish to bank mainly on being non-mainstream but embrace the series as a very unique, quirky story in the Marvel Universe. Also, in step with the source material, we will present the super-heroes as villain-like, although their actions are secretly saving the world. Furthermore, the heroes should obviously work well as a team in the action sequences. But we definitely want to emphasize that each character can hold his or her own if placed in a tense solo situation.

For practical production of the series some ideas have been thrown around to save money. This includes not having a Bob Grayson’s flying saucer appear at all, as well as having Gorilla Man be a mix of a suit, animatronics and digital effects. We were also considering using Bob Grayson’s telepathic powers as a convenience for production to put Hale in “human mode” possibly a bit more often than in the comics. As for the television series structure, we have  brainstormed a possible pilot that would open with Woo’s botched rogue mission and followed by opening credits that shows the teams history in the 1950’s and leads up to the “present.” This would then be followed by the interrogation scene with Ken Hale (but this is obviously all up for re-imagining).

Another idea that is sensible for attaining high quality would be hiring the costume designer for Pan’s Labyrinth.  It would be a good help for not only the Gorilla Man suit, but pretty much any super-hero suit that seems other-worldly. Raimi’s Darkman (1990) could also lead as a sort of example of the dark, campy look/feel of the series.



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