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Pilot episode

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Pilot episode

Post by Hellerick on Tue Jul 07, 2009 5:00 pm

I guess we should make a "pilot episode" of some kind first. Something short, one page or twofold page long, similar to the comics published in Nickelodeon Magazine. The Pilot Episode should be released earlier than the rest, and used for the project presentation/advertising purposes.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 5:35 pm

Yes, I agree. Now for a plotline. It probably shouldn't be something serious, like episodes such as "Pidgeon Man" or "Arnold's Christmas". Maybe something just silly. i saw an idea where Gerald gets a bad haircut in the ideas for episodes section. maybe that?
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Hellerick on Tue Jul 07, 2009 5:38 pm

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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 5:41 pm

Oh, sorry. I had no idea. :p
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Hellerick on Tue Jul 07, 2009 5:49 pm

I'm not sure, but probably since this episode is a pilot, it should be about a presentation or opening of some kind?
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 6:00 pm

hmm? What do you mean by opening?
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by sueKay on Tue Jul 07, 2009 6:43 pm

How about a short comic narrated by one of the characters (say Helga) giving a recap about their 4th grade and all the stuff that's happened. Have her introduce all the characters (just remember her impressions, lol) and somehow use it as a launching point into the first full episode!
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 7:45 pm

It'd probably be best for Arnold to introduce the characters if anything. He's really the main character after all.

I think we should skip the intros and start right in tho. A storyline that involves a bunch of the kids would be good. For the most part, people looking at this project will have a fairly good idea of who the characters are after all.

An Urban Legend (that was more ridiculous/adventurous than serious) would actually be a good way to start out, I imagine. It could involve a larger group of people and have their personalities come through and at the same time reintroduce the tone and give a good throwback to the original series.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 7:47 pm

Also, I know a lot of us are super big Helga fans and maybe even bigger Helga/Arnold fans, but I do hope there's some variety in storylines. I don't want the Helga/Arnold show. I want Hey Arnold! season 6.

Smile
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by tendra91 on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:27 pm

Hiya.

I think we can do a little a little bit of both for the beginning. A mixture of Hellerick's one-page "pilot episode", and a good introductory episode-episode. So here's what I'm thinking:

The first page should be Hellerick's first page pilot. But I'm not thinking that it should have a story, most like a "Previously on... HA!" type gag. So it's a bunch of flashback scenes recapping what has happened in the last 5 seasons + movie, all squished into one page.

You should be able to see all the scenes either on one page or a two-page spread, where you don't have to click "Next" to see the next page of the pilot, because that loses its "dramatic effect". In other words, you should be seeing this pilot all in one shot.

There's an example of a comic who did something, after coming back on hiatus, here: http://www.coolcatstudio.com/index.php?p=1
(The comic is mature, so IT'S NOT FOR KIDS!) But what they did on that page was capture all the past events of the comic into one page. It's kinda reminiscent of the T.V. show "24" where, in the beginning, they go "Previously on 24" and recap everything that happened in the last episode. I can't find an example, but here's a Simpsons spoof on it (in a non-English language... but you can get the idea): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJT4SLqo1To&NR=1

So I'm thinking that should be the first page. A one-page comic recapping all that's happened in the last five seasons + movie. Feedback?

Now, for the first episode, I'm thinking (like Squirreltamer said) an Urban Legend. And there's tons of reasons:

1) It ain't a HxA episode. I'm seeing that a lot of today's modern HA! fanfics are about these two, and it's getting a bit repetitive. I have yet to see a full urban legend fanfic, so this should be something new.

2) It has lots of opporunity of introduce a whack load of the HA! kids. So it's an easy introductory episode.

3) We're getting a lot of artists here. If we do an urban legend first, we can split of the work more. So you know how one episode project typically has a penciler, inker, colourist, background, and clean-up? There can be two groups of those 5 roles if you do an urban legend: one group draws the storytelling of the "urban legend", while the other group draws the main pages (the story outside when Gerald or someone else tells the urban legend). So a total of 10 artists working on it as a warm-up episode. Everyone with me so far?

4) I always liked urban legends because I always felt that the theme of urban legends circled around what it meant to be a kid: curiosity. And as a kid's cartoon (even though we're adults lol) I think we should have the first episode as one that reflects what kids deal with. It's not always romance, y'know.

So, feedback would be great. Let me know what you think.

(P.S. This is a pretty important issue, so I'm making this thread a Sticky. Thanks for bringing this up!)
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Annemiek on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:29 pm

I agree that we should do the pilot episode mainly around Arnold. He IS the main character after all. Maybe we could start by one or two pictures as a very short introduction.. Like, they are 5th graders now, right? So we could show that (subtle though)..
And then, indeed something like an urban legend, something light, with the main HA cast (Arnold, Helga, Gerald, Phoebe, Brainy, Mr.Simmons?, Harold, Eugene..) So those who don't remember the show completely can slowly fall into it again.
And I think we should use as many HA gags as possible; A short Helga moment with her Arnold locket, Brainy getting punched, Arnold giving advice.. Eugene falling down (I'm okay!).. Maybe Grandpa giving his own special advice.. Stuff like that, which brings up memories.

Edit, posted together with you, tendra ^^
But I think your idea is better. A very short pilot, and then keeping the first light and funny ^^


Last edited by Annemiek on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:52 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by tendra91 on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:33 pm

I wouldn't put them into the 5th grade so quickly. lol if we could, we should make an actual episode about them entering the 5th grade (later on though... not in the beginning).
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Annemiek on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:37 pm

Yeah maybe you're right ^^
Yet, I always believed they were in the fifth grade already in The Journal. 'Cause it's in October.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:44 pm

I've also always been of the belief that by the time the Journal rolls around they are in 5th grade. They have the summer of saving the neighborhood and then the Journal shows us a bit of the future? IDK.

I would love to put them in 5th grade. Then we have definite change and growth. We aren't trying to fiddle with the canon set out before us, just trying to keep it going.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:49 pm

(This is just an idea)What if we do an opening that says something like, "6 Months Later" in HA Font. And it's in front of the boarding house. And we get a feel for how things have changed so far. Like, it goes across the city, and we see Ms. Vitello watering her flowers, and Eugene riding his bike down the street and then crashes. A kid's baseball lands on Stoop Kid's stoop, and he gets chased, etc. etc.

Then we go to each of the characters houses. Like for instance, Arnold's: Ernie, Mr. Kokashka, and Mr. Hyunh are fighting over maybe like a bet or something, and Arnold's Grandma is in the background singing and Granpa says something like, "Pookie! I forbid you to sing that song ever again!"

Gerald's: Gerald's dad is confronting Jamie O and Gerald about wasting electricity, and Timberly and her mom are in the background and she says, "Mom, if Gerald gets kicked out can I put my toys in his room?"

Helga's: Bob is sitting at the TV, (a special entitled "Where are they Now: Ronnie Matthews; an easter egg!) and Helga comes downstairs. Then she says that she needs money for school stuff, to which Bob replies, "What? You don't need all that stuff! You're in, what, 2nd, 3rd, grade?" Then Helga says, "I'm going to 5th grade, BOB."

It's just a suggestion. Please don't be so hard on me if you're giving feedback! Surprised
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:54 pm

ElegantVamp I really love that idea. It shows the passage of time and how the more things change, the more they stay the same.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Annemiek on Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:56 pm

Yeah, I love that too!
Especially the last part, about Helga telling Big Bob that she's already going to the 5th grade, it's perfect!
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:00 pm

THANKS YOU GUYS! ^_____^
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Cadence on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:26 pm

Agreed on the Bob part. Very funny. =)

Maybe a brief into to the fifth grade could be done, such as meeting a new teacher, feeling very important now that they are the fifth graders (... and then realizing that the old fifth graders are now sixth graders... unless PS 118 is like my old elementary school that only went up to 5th grade >_>...), etc.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:31 pm

1) I kind of think we should keep Mr. Simmons as their teacher. Mostly because I love him. But it's also not unheard of for teachers to move up grades. I had the same Elementary teacher from 3-5 grade, because she just kept moving up with my class.

2) I'm almost positive PS 118 goes up to 6th grade. Phoebe only seemed to move classes, not schools when she got bumped up.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by sueKay on Tue Jul 07, 2009 9:32 pm

ElegantVamp - love your idea!

We could also have Gertie remarking something like "6 months? It feels more like 6 years!"
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Annemiek on Tue Jul 07, 2009 10:28 pm

Yeah, mr. Simmons should move up to the fifth grade with them, I love him too ^^
I had the same teacher in the first grade and in the sixth grade. They switched every few years.

And yes, the sixth grade is in their school. When Arnold wrote that valentines card to Ruth, he gave it to her at their playground, right?
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by tendra91 on Tue Jul 07, 2009 10:31 pm

ElegantVamp's idea sounds like a pretty good transition scene to use for whenever we stick the HA! gang in 5th gang. I want to comment and make a suggestion for that idea based on what Squirreltamer said:

Squirreltamer wrote:ElegantVamp I really love that idea. It shows the passage of time and how the more things change, the more they stay the same.

If we want to show the audience how much the gang hasn't changed, then I think we should try to make a contrast (juxtaposition is the fancy term) as much as possible so that we can emphasize how much they didn't change. Like, first show a scene from when they were 4th graders, fantasizing about the future about how much they would change as 5th graders. Then show ElegantVamp's idea to show them that nothing has changed. So as an example scene:

Have Wolfgang (who pretty much represents the 5th graders... as bullies) pick on one of the 4th graders (most likely the "losers" like Eugene/Brainy). Let Wolfgang give Eugene/Brainy a wedgie if you must, then have Wolfgang say his usual catchphrase ("Haha, you stupid fourth graders!"). That catchphrase will let the audience know that the HA! gang is currently in the fourth grade.

Then have (most likely Eugene) walk up to the rest of the HA! gang and strike up a conversation between them. So have the conversation something along the lines of "Ugh! That Wolfgang! Him and the fifth graders are such dicks. (Don't use the word 'dick' in the actual episode... lol) I can't believe that we're going to graduate from the fourth grade and be like them."

Have one of the HA! gang ask nonchalantly, "Hey, do you guys ever wonder what it would be like in the 5th grade?" The rest of the gang ponders this and a new scene starts. This scene is the "dream scene", where the HA! gang is fantasizing themselves as fifth graders. I think we could make this scene quite funny, because I'd be betting that they're going to think of themselves as turning into bullys. So it'd be quite something to see a bully-Arnold (or even a bully-Brainy!). Anyways, the dream scene has the characters completely changed into something that they're totally not (though I'm not sure if Helga would change much from the outside...). This dream scene could be drawn by a different artist, as the change in art style could suggest a different reality.

After the dream scene, we switch to ElegantVamp's scene. So there's the narration "6 months later" (we can argue the exact time that has passed later) and the showing that everything hasn't changed one bit. Eugene is still clumsy, the Boarders are still quirky but lovable, Gerald's family is still hectic/busy, and Bob is still a crumbum.

So having the dream scene which is practically the opposite of ElegantVamp's scene can really emphasize that nothing has changed.

Anyhoo, let me know what you guys think.

BTW, I'm putting my money that Simmons moves up w/ the HA! gang. There's a interview question about that. I'll copy and paste from my HACA article about TJM:

Question

It was mentioned that “The Journal” episode was Oct 5th. This means that TJM took place after that…if so, does this mean Simmons continues to teach the class after 4th grade?
Craig Bartlett

Yeah, I guess. Maybe he teaches 5th grade now. These are the kind of reality notes that we writers mostly ignore.
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by ElegantVamp on Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:09 pm

"This dream scene could be drawn by a different artist, as the change in art style could suggest a different reality."

....You know what that reminds me of? (i'm not saying we shouldn't do it, it just reminded me of something, lol) Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni. In the manga, when the story is told from someone else's POV the drawing style changes. It's the same in the anime, (from Ni---> Kai---> Rei) the animation is different each time. Razz

"So having the dream scene which is practically the opposite of ElegantVamp's scene can really emphasize that nothing has changed."

I like that idea! Going from dream---> reality.

I kind of want to have Monkeyman run down the sidewalk in front of Arnold's house again shouting, "MONKEYMAAANNN!" at the end. XD
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Re: Pilot episode

Post by Squirreltamer on Tue Jul 07, 2009 11:18 pm

I'd actually rather jump right into the opening sequence that ElegantVamp mentioned. It's more subtle and less pushy. Anybody who's watched/loved the series is already going to know the characters quirks.

Setting them up as their regular 4th grade selves, showing a fantasy and then showing them as exactly the same, only as 5th graders seems just a tad too repetitive for me. We'd just be reiterating what A) We already know from the series B) We've just been told AGAIN in the first half of the comic.

There's more momentum in just jumping right into the thick of things. And I like that you would think they might still be fourth graders and exactly the same until Helga brings up that it's a new year. I dunno, I just think it'll get too bulky and dull the other way.

Also, it should totes go from Helga telling Bob she's in fifth grade and swoop down towards Arnold at the end. Maybe just a shot from behind as he walks out the door with a speech bubble saying: "Hey Arnold!" as someone calls from off panel.
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