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PencilJack Writing Contest IV

Superhero Origin in Three Pages


Ultimate McDonaldland

Cheeseburglar Origin - "Behold, the Power of Cheese"

by Tarl N. Telford


What was once a happy place of children's dreams has disintegrated into a nightmare of Gotham-esque proportions.  Once the "Big R" kept the peace, but he hasn't been seen in fifteen years.  All the old gang has moved on from the spotlighted hero business.  The Sesame Seed Samurai Onslaught drove a stake through the heart of this once idyllic city.

In the ruins of greatness, greedy tyrants plot their schemes with nary a do-gooder to hinder their plans.  Where, oh where are those big red shoes?  Why haven't the golden arches lit up the sky?  Where have all the heroes gone?



Page 1 - Four Panels.  Three horizontal panels. One inset in panel two.


Panel 1 - Interior - Police Station - Observation Room.

                Through the observation window we see a police lineup. All female.  Various heights and sizes.  Faces are not important.  A small desk sits in front of the window.  Off to the right side is a reflection in the window of a young woman JOCELYN HAMM.

                She is a forensic photographer.


Caption 1 - It began like any other day, with the usual suspects.  That's me.  On the right.

Caption 2 - No.  The other right.  In the reflection.


Panel 2 (inset) - We see Jocelyn in full.  She's dressed comfortably - long-sleeved shirt and skirt.


Panel 3 - Long shot.  McDonaldland Harbor.  Police gathered around the crime scene - a crane pulls a body out of the river.  A small camera flash shows that Jocelyn is photographing the scene.



Dialogue 3  (cop 1) - HEARD HE HAS A DAUGHTER SOMEWHERE ...


Panel 4 - Newspaper on table reads "Hamburglar Dead!".  Jocelyn pulls on a variation of her father's old uniform.  Stripes.  Skirt.  Scarf.  Gloves.  Wide-brimmed hat.  Mask.  (Note: you can break this costuming into staggered panels to show each part.)


Page 2 - Five panels.  Four Panels, with one small inset.


Panel 1 - Factory silhouette against the full moon.  Jocelyn leaps onto the roof.  (note: possibly an homage to Frank Miller's "Dark Knight Returns" with Jocelyn against the moon instead of lightning.)  Pipes empty from the factory into the river.


Panel 2 - Inside Factory.  Vats of old cheese bubble with radioactivity.  Long shot.

                Big Mac (a hamburger-headed despot.  Think Darth Vader with a hamburger head and an eyepatch.) talks to a smaller man.  (Note:  This second man is the Professor, but it's not important to see his face.  Lab coat is fine.)

Dialogue 1 (Big Mac) - Now that Hamburglar is gone, we must continue our plans.  Soon your victory will be complete, and your exile can end.


Panel 3 - Up on a catwalk, Jocelyn crouches.  A crescent moon shaped shadow falls over her.  (We must see the crescent shape!)  Jocelyn startled.  She looks in horror back over her shoulder.

Dialogue 2 (Jocelyn) - Shadow of the moon?  I thought the moon was full ...


Panel 4 (Inset) - Two large hands hammer down on Jocelyn's back.


Panel 5 - Worm's eye shot.  Mac Tonight (a crescent moon-headed goon) throws Jocelyn down into a vat of old radioactive cheese.


Page 3 - Five panels.


Panel 1 - Same as panel 1 page two.  Factory silhouette.  The Moon is further up in the sky.  Focus should be on the pipes emptying into the river.  Jocelyn's body dumps out of one of the pipes.


Panel 2 - Riverbank.  Night.  Jocelyn washes up on the shore.


Panel 3 - Close up on Jocelyn's torso and head as large purple hands lift her up.


Panel 4 - Silhouette of Grimace carrying Jocelyn up the crest of a hill.  (Grimace looks like a big purple gumdrop.  It only needs to be identifiable as Grimace.)

Caption 1 - Called in to work.  Captain already knows that I am Hamburglar's daughter.  Gave me funeral leave. 

Caption 2 - I stayed with Grimace after that.  He helped me train my mind and my body.  Helped me to understand -

Caption 3 - The radioactivity had done something to me.  To my DNA.  Everything was more acute.  The old bubbling cheese had made me, dare I even say it?

Caption 4 - Sharper.


Panel 5 - Heroic rooftop shot.  The newly named CHEESEBURGLAR stands on the corner, or steeple, or gargoyle (or whatever looks the coolest).  She looks down over the city she is now sworn to protect.

                Caption 5 - If they were behind my father's murder, I will bring the battle to them.

                Caption 6 - Evil-wrong-bad-doers beware -

                Caption 7 - McDonaldland justice just got sharper, thanks to ...

                Caption 8 (Title) - The CHEESEBURGLAR.


The End.