Saturday 29 July 2017

The Nativity - script written

I've just written The Nativity. Though, I will concede, someone else wrote it first.

While I'm still waiting for approval and the go ahead to draw up The Book Of Ruth, Rahab, and Jael Wife Of Heber, all of which I wrote a few months ago, I was delighted to get the commission last week to write a Nativity adaptation for Bible Society, which I delivered on Thursday night.

Though we talked in terms of me writing a 4 page A4 strip, as I'd done with Feeding The 5000 earlier this year, I've delivered the laid-out script for a strip that runs to 16 A5 pages. For some reason the gags all came out as four-panellers, rather than my previous three-panellers (which give me a 9-to-a-page grid). So I'm keeping fingers crossed that Rachel and Bible Society will like this version, otherwise I'll have to lose a lot that I'm quite proud of.

As with all my previous Bible adaptations, I'm adapting something I've never read before, so it's a fascinating education for me to see what these stories actually have in them. We get a few gags at the expense of Matthew's opening to his gospel, which is a page of begatting (also covered brilliantly in this comedy routine by Richard Herring which, thankfully, I didn't see till after I'd written my version. We don't do the same gags, so phew.) I'm quite pleased with my characterisation of Angel Gabriel, and I've revisited my Herod, who I first wrote for Feeding of the 5000. He's a nastier bit of work in this story than he was in 5000, and we end on a bit of a cliffhanger with him (spoiler alert) calling for the murder of al boys under the age of two.

Possibly my favourite routine is having one of the Magi as a sort of Brian Cox character, much more interested than the science than anything more inexplicable. I hope to get the go ahead to draw this strip soon, let us see.

I've realised I managed to not mention the Feeding of the 5000 in my blog, when I completed it back in October of last year, so here's a snippet now. I don't actually know if it's seen print yet.

Kev F Sutherland, as well as writing and drawing for The Beano, Marvel, Doctor Who et al, runs Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, libraries and art centres - email for details, and follow him on Facebook and Twitter. View the promo video 

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