This was the first of the Kalwa Anime crossover, featuring Kalwa in the Dr. Stone world. The idea just came to me while I was drawing Kohaku from the show (seen on the green raptor site) about how Kalwa would look if she ever crossed over her and thus began this crossover series that I’m currently working to finish. Also it was real fun drawing Kalwa in cave woman garbs.
A call back to chapter 4. This was really the first time staging a real action scene and need for coordinated movement. Rachel’s whip in particular was a unique experiment to play with drawing it in various positions and trying to draw in ways that could feel natural. I seriously don’t have that many comics where people use whips (or at least I didn’t back then) so a good portion of the portions came from either videos about whips or imagination.
This emotional page from chapter 14. I’ve really credited this page as being a major turn around for the story as this is the first page in the series where we see Kalwa emotionally break down in tears. The second to last panel was the major vocal point which was a vitally important part of the page. I think when drawing it there were about three versions of this particular pattern before settling on the finished one.
One of my favorite pages from chapter 19, thus was the big page that revealed Victor in full light as the Whitechappel murder (or at least one of them). I put so much effort into the first panel as I wanted it to look freighting and intimidating given the huge role Victor would be playing in this arch and the future.
And so Chief continues with his story to Kalwa and Zack, but what information will come out today? Does the item in the thumbnail look familiar, maybe you’ve seen it in a previous chapter before? Well now your finally gonna get the answer about what it is. Click the thumbnail below and read on!
This was a character chart of made of Rachel quite some time ago. Even though I like her design, she’s possibly the most difficult to draw of the Desert Vixens. It’s mainly due to her hair, I find it really difficult to draw her hair consistently over the course of several panels. Usually when I draw characters in the sketchbook I tend to draw them once or twice just to have a note of their hair and I can form other angles while working on the comic. However every so often I wind up doing a character that I do need reference for, hence the heavy footnotes in the chart.
So we come now to the final chapter of the whitechappel arch, and this chapter is split into two sections: explaining away the mystery, and horrible terrifying chase.
So the last chapter revealed that there was actually two Jack the Rippers, however this chapter indicates there may have been many more and that in reality there is no LEGITIMATE Jack the Ripper, but rather it is merely a name floating around the paper. As I was winding this story down in writing, I felt this was ultimately what it would lead to, and give a reason as to why this case has never actually been solved. Indeed according to history, the infamous letter that was found at the crime scene was proven to not have been written by the killer himself, but rather an anonymous reporter who really just wanted to draw attention to the crimes. In fact it is highly possible that Whitechapel murders were really no different than any other crime, they were just overly exposed by the media. This particular fact was played for both the story and the reader.
Indeed in the modern world, media tends to always hype everything. Possibly things in the real world are only made worse by media coverage, which only can help fuel the fire. While I am not trying to say that all media is bad or fake, I am saying that it’s coverage can heighten certain things to the worst, in this case the Whitechapel murders. As explained in this chapter by Victor, his murder of Martha Tabram drew great attention and led to imitators and more murders throughout the town. In addition this arch has stated that there was also growing mistrust amongst the police. With so much going on around town and the fact that there wasn’t one particular individual committing all the murders, it would come as no surprise that this case was never solved.
As much as we tried to follow history with this arch, one small fictional fact was created in this story, the fact that Martha Tabram was jewish. This fact has never been stated in real life (course much of Tabram’s life is unknown), it was our one forged fact in order to draw racist individuals into the pool of chaos. It should also be noted that even though we explained who killed Martha Tabram and Mary Kelly, we never explained who specifically killed the other canonical victims, whether it was Victor, Mathis or someone else. As noted there were many imitators who took after Victor’s crimes, it could’ve been anyone who may have been able to properly copy his work.
Getting off the historical side of things, it’s worth talking about Victor himself and the events he set in motion. Victor was in a way based off my own feelings as an artist, with a dark twist. His character was actually based more on an article I read some time ago describing and amateur artist and a real artist. The article noted that real artists will stick to their craft and keep working, while an amateur artist constantly seeks attention and tries different things. Many of these qualities were actually transferred to Victor as a character. While Victor has the passion and the drive to be an artist, he never really works hard at it. He keeps changing his craft and never really hones it to the point of perfection, rather he is constantly concerned with making a living and getting attention. He finally started to get the attention he always wanted with his murders and that’s ultimately what led him down the path he was on. In many ways, Victor is a mentally ill individual who craves attention more than he does making something beautiful. More will be said on Victor when he comes to the Creating Kalwa journals and his future appearances in the story.
Finally worth noting was the impact of this chapter. As seen is later chapters, Kalwa is constantly haunted by her deadly encounter with Victor. With this chapter, it was meant to mark the end of an era, in which Kalwa meets an opponent that she CAN’T defeat. Kalwa has now experienced real danger of owning a time traveling phone and it’s left her in a terrible state. So this would be the set up to the long running arch that would shape the remainder of the Kalwa story. But more on that later, thanks for sticking by our chapter look backs on the Whitechapel arch, and we will be doing more chapter look backs in the future.
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So now we come to chapter 18, the near conclusion of the Whitechapel story arch. This chapter of course reveals the big twist of the entire story: there’s more than one Jack the Ripper. Although this isn’t the full explanation of the case, see us for the next chapter look back on that.
The idea of there being two killers eventually evolved into a mandatory plot line as we faced several issues when writing this arch. First and foremost is that Kalwa is NOT a historical comic, it is by no mean meant to be educational. Kalwa is an ADVENTURE comic, which uses time travel as a canvas to tell a vast array of stories. Each era is more of a setting which allows us to do different stories and styles for the adventures that Kalwa embarks on, me and my co-writer have no interest in educating people about historical events unless we find them interesting, this Jack the Ripper case actually being a rare incident.
To give a little more of a clear view to this last statement, we didn’t necessarily want to the be bound to the facts of history and have our creativity stifled because of what historians have dug up in recent years. Adding onto this fact, everything I read on the Ripper seemed to be conclusive evidence that he was in fact targeting prostitutes which presented a major problem. Kalwa being a sixteen year old girl who would most certainly not be working in the profession (for more than one reason) thus the Ripper would really have no reason whatsoever to target her in the first place.
Another major obstacle that brought on the plot twist, is that I wanted this to be a murder mystery. Possibly getting the reader to try and deduce who the killer was. Yet at the same time, I wanted an unexpected twist that readers wouldn’t see coming. I was actually inspired by the first Friday the 13th in which the movies killer Pamela Vorhees was introduced into the film so late that viewers didn’t have time to suspect her, and thus I wanted to pull a stunt just like this. However doing so I felt would be a complete betrayal of the mystery as it would simply discard all the readers efforts just to reveal a new face in the last minute.
So with all these factors taken into account, the only logical conclusion was to have two killers. One would abide more by historical facts and the reader could attempt to solve, while the other one would be more free to do what we initially wanted. And speaking of history, this chapter features yet another historical note in it. When Kalwa breaks into Mary Kelly’s house, you can see smoke coming from the fire place with clothes thrown in it. This is actually a real determined fact from the murder scene, it is believed that the killer threw clothing into the fire place in order to provide enough light to carry out his horrible act.
But this is not the end of the historical notes or the development of this arch, you’ll see what we mean in the next call back on chapter 19.
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So we now come to chapter 17, the second part of the Whitechapel arch. I would honestly say that this chapter was more of the mystery moment of the arch, as the next chapter would answer the mystery and the following chapter would conclude the story. This was actually the chapter that where most of the research was put into as it contains many, many references to the real life Whitechapel murders.
This chapter mentions in the beginning the night of the double homicide, as well as the mention of the Ripper’s primary targets being women. One other reference that was brought up in this chapter is Gerald Butler himself carrying around his bloody butcher knife. While this was intended to mostly be a fake out on his identity as the killer, in real life butchers often roamed around the streets of London with blood on their apron, in fact one possible murder case of ripper was reported to have taken place around the streets where many butchers lived, thus the killer was able to blend into the background whether he had blood or not.
This chapter also introduced the first guest appearance of a real historical character, that being Mary Kelly, the Ripper’s real life final victim (in London anyway). Of all the suspects I researched, Mary Kelly has the most backstory on her and a number of them were worked into the dialogue. The hooker that Kalwa meets in the alley mentions that Mary loves pup hopping and she’s really “found her voice.” This is actually a reference to Mary’s real life, in which she was said to be “quiet” in real life, and quite “loud” when drunk, even said to have been singing songs in a “irish tougue.”
I actually wanted the reader and Kalwa both to feel upset about Mary meeting her ultimate fate, and this actually became a bit of a challenge at first. Originally Kalwa and Mary were supposed to have more of a conversation, with Mary even suggesting that prostitution wasn’t fully a choice after Kalwa tells her how much the profession sickens her. This was ultimately scrapped as page limitations wouldn’t allow this conversation to carry on, or make it meaningful. Also it would require writing an entire plot as to why Kalwa really hates hookers, as being a hooker doesn’t make some one a bad person. So I decided to put great emphasis on Mary’s design, making her out to look sweet kind and innocent the very opposite of the profession she was in. Also she was brave and tough at the same time, giving her a little appeal to reader. As very little definitive descriptions of Mary Kelly exist (other than her curly red hair), there was plenty of room to freely design her.
Finally the last worthwhile note to this chapter is than this chapter allowed the comic to incorporate a very real and adult subject: Racism. This is of course brought up in the form of Thomas’s tragedy in which he was not only taken off the case, but he was simply put on because of his Jewish heritage. This plot line developed from my research as I had read that London was full of anti-semitism as it was being flooded by waves of Jewish immigrants who had fled Eastern Europe at the time. In fact one actual suspect for Jack the Ripper was a polish immigrant named John Pizer, whose paper articles often focused on the fact he was Jewish. Further more, racism grew at the very fact that a foreigner was killing ENGLISH prostitutes in their own land. This fact would actually play a major role in the actual story and further cement why the case was never solved. It’s very appropriate for this particular arch as this arch is the jumping off point in which the overall Kalwa story gets darker and more mature going forward. Stay tuned for more information chapter 18.
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