is a 14-page story about an aging husband's descent into madness as his marriage begins to crumble apart around him. Set in New York City, the story explores the darker side of the human psyche: desperation, crippling sadness, hopelessness. It begs the question, "What would you do?" Vicariously, I sought out to answer that very question with the lead character, Luc, a wealthy realtor who married a much younger woman, Paige, who is the personification of sin. Paige is a creeping sickness that infects all that she comes in contact with, and while Luc may be a character of strong convictions, he eventually begins to fall apart as well.
Why is the story called the Passenger
? To be
honest, the story was once quite different than the story of a broken marriage. Originally, the story centered on a man also named Luc who is kidnapped and imprisoned in the back of a taxi by an organization that thrived on individual terrorism. A briefcase left in the backseat of the taxi informed Luc that he must either murder the taxi driver and be set free, or a small bomb would detonate and kill them both. Naturally, the passion to live far out-weighed any guilt of murder, so Luc shot the driver in the back of the head. It wasn't a bad concept, but it was a weak execution-- no pun intended. The story was too short, and it fell heavily on the edge of melodrama because nobody would have cared for the underdeveloped lead. So, the entire story was axed, but the name carried over to the new concept.
Despite the original concept's short-comings, the new version was strong enough to warrant a spot in the upcoming February issue of Digital Webbing Presents #28. At one time, it was even considered to be the cover story, but alas. The real charm of the story doesn't really fall upon the story, though. The real credit falls in the hands of the story's illustrator, Adrian Sibar, a former artist for Batgirl
and Planet of the Apes
. When I originally posted an ad to find an artist, I received a lot of submissions. The quality of the art was all over the board. Frustrated, days turned into a week, and historically-- if you don't land an artist within the first few days, don't except a last minute save. However, that wasn't the case with Adrian. His work came through my junk folder, and I almost completely missed it. When I looked over his samples, they didn't necessarily blow my mind, but his style was unlike anything I'd ever seen. Adrian's work was so charming and fresh, he had to the one! It was like art deco meets an explosion of colour. I immediately began to storyboard my script with his style in mind, and I knew it was going to be special. Needless to say, I was right. And the rest is history. Or is it? Adrian and I are currently working on another project called Abigail & Rox
, a children's story that I will definitely go into much more detail at another time. But I can promise you the best has yet to come.