The Lance and Eskimo Fall in Love storyline was inspired in part by the high-school comic “Eskimo’s Crush,” although the updated version actually bears little resemblance to the original, which doesn’t have a Lance storyline; portrays a slightly different Caryn; and has more or less a different plot. Still. Inspired by.
The comic opens thus, for no particular reason except that it made me giggle:
I used this pretty much verbatim, although because it shows Eskimo being weirdly obsessed and sad, it made more sense to positioned it as a follow-up. This is one of the rare cases where I think the original is better than the update. (Both commit the error of showing Eskimo’s hands in a position which would be impossible on a pinball machine.) The guy down at the corner there is Rory. I used to draw him with wild tips. (An honor that has been since passed to Lance.)
Next we get out first look at Caryn, their new neighbor across the hall. Although Lance and Eskimo did live in a basement at some point during the old continuity, they live in a high-rise here. Jeria, if I recall correctly, occupies the penthouse. She doesn’t appear in the original comic, and Caryn is no relation. (I made Caryn into Jeria’s sister in the update to give her an excuse to temporarily be their neighbor.)
Eskimo and Lance visit with Caryn, who casually namedrops her ex-girlfriend. Eskimo is in love, and jealous of Lance’s charm when he offers a shoulder to cry on. The next morning, Eskimo comes to the door in the morning to get the paper and blushes when Caryn comes to her own door in her robe.
As you can see, I didn’t do any page planning at that time: just used whatever space I wanted at the top and then ended up cramming stuff into the bottom. I don’t think I even planned ahead more than a panel or two in advance.
Two things I love about the preceding page: Lance’s kingly hands-on-hips at the door and Eskimo’s, “Oh wow, she’s looking in the Asian Philosophy section! How noble!”
So Eskimo enacts her plan to get Caryn: she trips. A lot. She also gets advice from a talking romance novel entitled Forbidden. (Even it knows the tripping thing is not going to work.)
A montage follows in which Eskimo puts herself in danger over and over, and Caryn casually rescues her without looking up from her book, etc. As I mentioned in the notes for the updated version, I changed Eskimo from would-be rescuee to would-be rescuer since Eskimo’s personality has gotten a lot more insane and aggressive (f0r the best, I think).
The romance novel encourages Eskimo to try drowning after Eskimo tells it that Caryn’s route takes her by a lake each day. Eskimo agrees, even though she can’t swim. (She can in the current continuty, though.) But Caryn doesn’t come, and Eskimo ends up getting rescued by Lance, who informs her that Caryn left for New York that morning. The comic ends with the same moral as “L&E Fall in Love”, plus some unnecessary creepy sexual tension between Eskimo and Lance.