A Graphic Novel Preview…

In my private notes, I always have called it Alexandria Squared.  In a lot of ways it is, records are stored there from explorers all over the continent.  It is also another offshoot of my fascination with Urban Exploration, and the Parisian exploration groups who were exploring the catacombs, restoring France’s architectural/historical heritage, and building movie theaters under the citizens http://film.guardian.co.uk/News_Story/Guardian/0,4029,1299449,00.html or http://www.urban-resources.net/pages/perforating_mexicans_guardian.htm

The other thing that was the trigger for it was H. P Lovecrafts “The Shadow out of Time” especially the libraries of the Great Race as the main protagonist discovered when he walked their ruins. There are a lot more things in the underlevels than just sewer lines and tunnels, you know :)

In the time of the comic, the Library is about 5 square miles of facilities, corridors, and archives. Most of the place was gutted out of the underlevels of several water treatment plants, old factories and the like. The pool was part of an old private club that was destroyed in a fire and never rebuilt.

The odd man out for the library is the Central Gallery (also known as “The Cylinder”). The Cylinder was a section that was discovered through excavation by the Tunnelrunners, and is a pre founding structure (part of the original ruins that the City of Erech was built on)

Miles of books, rooms, and other facilities.  Tightly guarded.  It also served as a knowledge repository for most of the culture as well.  Much like the monks in the book “A Canticle for Leibowitz”, the explorers set the place up as a backup in case people were stupid enough to touch off a war that destroyed a lot of important things needed to rebuild.  This backup plan is, in part, the secret agenda of the Tunnelrunners in the first place.  They are mankind’s safety net.

The Library itself is based off of a set of bookcases and other pieces.  Totally modular, and is desgned to be fitted together into a series of endless corridors. The pool and other places are pieces that have been dropped into modular sections so that they can be added for spice as needed.  The pool (which was mentioned in the comic back in October of 2006) was based off of structures that I’d heard about that dated back to the Great Fire of London in 1666.  Every so often during construction/demolition in modern London, they used to break into a basement or cellar that had been covered over when the city rebuilt after the Great Fire

As for the people….Laura McAllen (Dana’s Mom in frame three) was based off of a third grade teacher of mine (Mrs, Badgely).  A very smart, classy lady as I recall.  Definitely my favorite teacher overall.  Now, Dana McAllen on the other hand was based off of a single photo I saw once.

A number of yers ago, I was cruising thorugh urban exploration websites and I chanced upon a photo of a female explorer from Action Squad out of Minneapolis.  The photo was simply iconic.  She was fully nude, and photographed doing a hipshot model pose down a long drain tunnel.

That planted the seed, and Dana McAllen stepped into my consciousness.  Dana has more than a touch of the Mira Sorvino/Replacement Killers feel about her, too.  Same kind of fashion sense, even down to the interesting tattoos as well.

For an interesting note…Dana, and her mother are the exact same digital model.  Laura was created by changing Dana’s hair, and turning one of the age dials on her character .3 (I think)  Geoff was based off of Hakon Blackaxe in the same way (though the two are no relation.)