EVIL IN KIDS TELEVISION: PICKING YOUR IMAGES

How do you show compelling evil in a kids animated TV series?  We needed some big stakes to make it believeable that these super-powerful people, our hereos, would need to fight for justice for themselves and others.  We needed nasty villains — but we had a severe limit on what nastiness we could ever show them doing.  When we chose Henry Peter Gyrich during X-MEN:TAS Season One it was because he was in charge of a horrifying “final solution” set up to exterminate our lead characters and innocent others of their kind.  We couldn’t depict mass slaughter.  But we could make his ambitions clear and reinforce the horror of his plans with images of the weapons — towering sentinel robots (see below) — he had gathered to carry them out.  Just below, Gyrich is seen doing nothing worse than simply looking down at Jubilee.  But in the image of his lifeless, covered eyes, with his glasses’ reflections revealing Jubilee’s fear, his evil is palpable.  (It reminds me of the mirrored glasses of the merciless guard in the movie Cool Hand Luke who shoots Paul Newman.)  One of the first storytelling rules we are told, at least out in Hollywood, is that your hero is only as good as the villain you have set up to challenge him.  Gyrich and his Sentinels gave us a good start.

untitled

morph-sentinels

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s