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Florida Gulf Coast University
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Fort Myers, FL 33965-6565
(239) 590-1000 or (800) 590-3428

SEAN MORALES

THE TOURIST TRAP

Senior Project FALL 2017

The Tourist Trap is a two part comic series that will follow the adventures of a laid-back, anthropomorphic, techno-organic weasel, and his plucky robot sidekick, as the two travel through space, visiting many odd and fantastic worlds. This project focuses on the artwork of the comic, presenting a short eight-page preview of what the completed comic will look like: four pages of what is a prototype of what the finished comic will be, and two finalized pages. Also included are two character study pages illustrating the characters’ final designs. This will be the first installment in what is intended to be a longer comic series, eventually revolving around several different characters. This story focuses on the Uber Weasel and Buddy as they stop on an alien planet to refuel their ship, and are inadvertently dragged into a power struggle over an artifact of supposed ultimate power.


This project seeks to revive a style of science fiction story telling that has been lost due to the popularity of various intellectual properties such as Star Wars, Aliens, and many more. This style is best described as science fantasy, one that mixes typical science fiction elements like starships and blasters, with typical fantasy motifs like magic and swordplay. Some of the inspirations for the visual style of the comic come from artists like comic book king Jack Kirby, classic cartoonist Max Fleischer, and internationally renowned comic book author Hergé, best known for his series The Adventures of Tintin.


The Tourist Trap is meant to be a humorous and self-aware take on the typical power fantasy style of story that permeates our popular culture. With the growing popularity of the superhero genre, certain story telling clichés have become common place and accepted. For example, protagonists who are just given their powers without having to really work for them, whether it’s from a radioactive spider bite, a magical artifact, or because they are THE CHOSEN ONE. This isn’t how the world works, and so I have written The Tourist Trap to be an affectionate parody of these superhero tropes, by presenting a story in which the protagonist already has his powers that he’s been growing all his life, and the villain is the one that wrongfully receives her power from a supposed magical sword. A sword, as it turns out, has no magic power at all.


This project mixes digital art with traditional media: the prototype of the comic was drawn by hand using pen, ink, and high quality colored pencils, whereas the digital pieces in this exhibition were made using Clip Studio Paint, a premium, digital drawing program. The print outs are inkjet on foam core. Once The Tourist Trap is complete, it will be uploaded online for all the world to see.