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Havock: A Hancock Parody on GoAnimate

Ever since GoAnimate introduced their Character Creator I've been wanting to find a good reason to use it rather than to just make a series of characters for the sake of making characters.

I'm a big fan of actor, Will Smith and had just recently watched his movie Hancock - the story of a washed up Superhero with little respect for himself or others. The character seemed just the ticket for some kind of parody and a great excuse to get busy with GoAnimate's Character Creator.

So that's Will Smith as Hancock (pictured on the left) and above right is about as near as I could get with the Character Creator - bearing in mind that the Character Creator is a little limited when it comes to clothing but quite flexible when it comes to faces.

Fortunately, because I made a parody, there's no real need to get either the likeness or outfit exact. It only has to look enough like the original character so that people know who is being referenced.

Probably a little surprisingly it took me a while to come up with the name 'Havock'. Originally I was going to keep the name 'Hancock' but discovered GoAnimate's language censor didn't like it - substituting symbol letters so that the name read more like 'Hanc$&k'.

Then it hit me that the ideal name for my parody character was 'Havock' since creating havoc seemed to be a general characteristic of this superheroes actions.

Obviously there was no way I could parody the whole film so I chose a couple of key scenes from the movie and then wrote my own story. Watch the animation below to see what I came up with.

Havock - Dog of a Day by etourist

Like it? Create your own at GoAnimate.com. It's free and fun!

I had a lot of trouble writing the script for Havock because I never really had any idea of what the story would be from the outset. All I knew is that I wanted to do some kind of parody. So I started out trying to reproduce the opening scenes of Hancock where a child approaches the superhero, who is semi drunk and lying on a public bench, and points out to him a police chase in progress being shown live on the news (which is playing on some TV's in an electrical store opposite the bench).

At that point I knew GoAnimate's Underdog/Saturday Morning Cartoon themes had a bank background and thought it would be great to show Underdog's Riff Raff robbing a bank and having Havock point out that the scene on the TV was just a cartoon.

That's where things got stuck and I went away and made what has become one of my most successful animations to date with over 11,000 views, Harry Chalk - Secret Agent.

The break from Havock really helped. When I finally came back to it a month or so later I had a brainwave... what if, after Havock has just declared the vision on the TV to be a cartoon, you saw Riff Raff drive by in the background? I tried this out in the GoAnimate studio and the first time I saw Riff Raff drive by I actually laughed out loud. For me, that was it, and that's how Underdog became a part of the story.

This idea also opened the way for me to parody the other scene from the original movie that I really wanted to include - the train crashing into Hancock. It's such a funny scene in the film. Now that I had Riff Raff driving around it easily lead into setting up this scene in my parody.

It wasn't all smooth sailing from there though. Having the Underdog plot line running parallel to Havock's in the background took a while for me to come up with and is actually inspired by episode four of my Men In Black series. In that episode Evil Genius, Rashy, is doing his own thing in the background as the main story unfolds.

I also struggled with how to end the animation because once Underdog turned in Riff Raff there was nothing left for Havock to do - which is how the subtitle 'Dog of a Day' came about suggesting that Havock was having a particularly bad day.

Back at the scene in the bar I tried a number of endings including ones where Havock had some luck with the Blonde women and having Underdog (as Shoe Shine Boy) utter the last line "Maybe you should try a desk job?".None of which really worked so I just ended it how I did with the barman saying the closing line.

All up, Havock was very difficult to script. That aside it has been well received on GoAnimate with several people asking if I'm going to turn it into a series. I'm not sure if I will. Maybe if the right story comes along?

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