Silhouettes Sans Mountain – Chapter 7, Act 4, Strip 68

Uh-oh, seems like K’ip couldn’t turn the tide in favour of Team Good, either.

Contrary to what I pointed out in connection with the Professorian the last time, DM doesn’t seem to have been handicapped too much by the shortness of his limbs, even if it’s actually more pronounced in his case. Despite his diminutive size, he seems to be a highly competent swordsman – capable of outfencing even K’ip, a seasoned adventurer with the natural grace of a cat.

Admittedly, K’ip is more competent at arts and crafts than fencing, but he still isn’t exactly a trivial opponent in a swordfight. So how can somebody with a small, frail body of considerable age beat him? The answer would be easy, if this was a big-budget production: CGI effects. With the appropriate budget, we could actually have seen how a life-like 3D-model of DM overcomes K’ip with acrobatic jumps, clever feints and lightning-fast thrusts.

Of course, with the budget that actually was available, George Geekish had to go for a more cost-effective approach – one which is also ennobled by its status as a time-honored classic: shadow fencing. Instead of showing the audience the actual fight, show them the silhouettes of the fighters, shadowed on a wall or other convenient vertical surface. Particularly useful nowadays, when even male actors are no longer automatically trained in fencing – instead of projecting the silhouettes of the actors, you can project the silhouettes of competent stuntmen. Or, even cheaper, go for stock footage.

Unfortunately, George couldn’t find any stock footage featuring a fighter of DM’s stature…but, as he explained to Nolan, if the fighters were standing at and angle to the wall, and DM closer to it, his shadow might appear as tall as K’ip’s due to the optical effect. Nolan immediately accepted that the audience would automatically conclude the same…well, he accepted it immediately after being informed of the potential cost-savings.

Final score: 0/6 for Team Good. ._.

More on Monday.

4 Replies to “Silhouettes Sans Mountain – Chapter 7, Act 4, Strip 68”

    1. It would have made sense to break out the kitting needles, but K’ip is genre-savvy enough to know that an ultimate confrontation calls for a certain amount of decorum and style. He felt he had to try using the sword…just in case he wins, and they’d erect a statue to him later. He wouldn’t want to be immortalized in marble holding a pair of knitting needles in a fighting stance.

  1. It looks like you very too hasty with despair strip (when all party members were contemplating how bad are they in their hero jobs). It would be perfect after this one.

    1. Yeah, it would certainly work well at this juncture. Too bad I’ve already spent it…but, hey, now I can at least claim that that was a fore-shadowing of later events. Always a mark of high-quality script-writing. XD

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