Thought Bubble Launch: A Certain Symmetry by Richard Worth and Jordan Collver #TBF15

If you are launching a comic at Thought Bubble this weekend, feel free to get in touch…

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Richard Worth and Jordan Collver write,
Together we are known as The Water Closet Press. We have been making comics together for nearly half a decade. We've produced an ongoing series called Ladies & Gentlemen as well as an anthology of short stories set in the same universe. We have a whole bunch of short form comics and are featured in this week's 2015 Thought Bubble Charity Anthology from Image Comics.
We want to work on comics of all sorts. For the last few years our biggest ambition has been to put together an extended piece about Harry Houdini ("The Handcuff King") and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (creator of "The Great Detective") entitled Escape!
We've produced the story below , A Certain Symmetry, as a trailer for Escape!  You can read here or over on our blog and it will be available to buy in hard copy at Thought Bubble.  We have had some interest from publishers on with producing Escape! but haven't been able to work on it full time, so if you enjoy this comic or have enjoyed some of our other work you can help us to make Escape! by checking out our Patreon and visiting us at Thought Bubble.
It is the 1920s and Spiritualism has taken the world by storm. Doyle is its greatest champion, heralding it as the next great religion; Houdini is its greatest foe, viewing it as a swindle exploiting the vulnerable.  They were two of the most influential men of their time. Each led extraordinary lives in their own right, but their lives also overlapped in astonishing ways. Their mutual admiration for one another brought them together and the two men became fast friends, even accompanying one another on family holidays. And yet their conflicting beliefs and goals resulted in a heated rivalry. They died bitter and distant from each other, never reconciling.
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Throughout the story we will touch on what we consider to be the major events of Houdini and Doyle's lives as individuals, but the plot will be advanced through the characters themselves as they interact. We will used their documented meetings and clashes a plot beats and their separate musing as a form of dialogue for our themes and motifs. We will embellish certain aspects in order to weave a compelling narrative, but will remain true to the spirit and history of both men.
Most approaches to their relationship have vilified one man whilst deifying the other.  Escape! aims to avoid such bias and present the true nature of both these men – to find the underlying motives and ideas that initially brought them together, and later drove them apart. Both men were flawed: Houdini arrogant, Doyle naïve. Both were stubborn.
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The whole piece is centred around the themes of symmetry and duality; the similarities between the lives of Houdini and Doyle; the blurred boundaries between deception and illusion; the distance between creator and audience; and the relationship between faith and doubt.

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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