The Watts Riots did have a notable effect on Los Angeles civic architecture. To this day, most LA police stations do not have exterior windows. They were a particular target during the riots, and afterward, stations with exterior windows had those windows bricked up. New stations were constructed without windows from the get-go. (You may see movies with Los Angeles stations having exterior windows. Those are either sets or Vancouver, depending on whether or not it is raining outside.)

My neighbor (then an LAPD Metro Police sergeant) took me on a tour of the station in downtown Los Angeles (near Skid Row) and it was like walking into a bunker. I’m sure the people who work there never even notice after a while, but to me, it definitely felt like a fortress. All because of a riot back in 1965.

There has certainly been some talk about equipping City Hall with ballistic glass, similar to the White House. I suspect it would have primarily been the fourth floor, where the Mayor’s office is; but for the purposes of this comic and increasing jeopardy, we’re going to go with them having done the whole building. So raging fires above and below, interior structure starting to weaken, and Holbeck and the other office workers are trapped behind walls of concrete and ballistic glass. Things are heating up!

More below!





This page is another fine example of The Collaborative Process between generations. I had been chortling over Max’s roughs for these pages because of how he was drawing Holbeck. For the record, I had scripted Holbeck as a pudgy, balding, middle-aged man; an unremarkable civil servant who suddenly reveals a command presence in an emergency. Max preferred to draw him like this, I think because otherwise he would have looked too much like Wallend.

Well, I had no problems with Max’s vision here, except that once he started cleaning up the roughs and I got a better look at the Holbeck character I was struck by his resemblance to a certain pulp hero. Thus this conversation:


ME: Dude! You’ve got Holbeck looking so much like Doc Savage we should just go for it! Do a total homage! Rip his sleeves to shreds except for the cuffs and bust all the buttons off his shirt when his chest expands here so his shirt is open to the beltline!

MAX: What? No! I don’t want to deal with the continuity issues, and besides — who the hell is Doc Savage?

ME: …(senile grumbling about modern generation)


Well, when I was doing the effects for this page, I couldn’t resist doing a text effect in Photoshop that took me way longer than it was probably worth, but I sent it off to Max with a note saying he could take it out if he wanted.


MAX: Actually, it works pretty well! I’ll clean it up a little and leave it.

ME: Thanks! I based it on the original Doc Savage logo.

MAX: He had a logo?

ME: …(more senile grumbling.)


So there you go. We’re not implying that Holbeck is any relation whatsoever to Dr. Clark Savage, Jr., the Man of Bronze; this is just a small indulgence on my part for a bit of additional fun. And whether you recognize the logo style or not, I think it works for selling the emotion of the moment. Hope you enjoy! And upvotes appreciated!

— Bob out