Webcomic Beacon #143: Core Plot Devices: MacGuffins, Chekov’s Gun, & Red Herrings

Jules Rivera (Marsh Rocket) and Adam Smithee (The Apple of Discord) join Fes, Tanya, and Mark to discuss Chekov’s Gun, MacGuffins, and Red Herrings! An episode chock full of discussion on prime plot devices. In future Webcomic Beacon EPs, we’ll take closer looks at specific tropes, but for now, please enjoy this episode! It’s informative; plus includes deviant boob discussion, and Mark cursing like a sailor at one point.


Cover Art by: Donna Kebab

Notes: The break song was The Plot by White Rabbits, Webcomics Weekly, Valkyrie Squadron, Apple Valley, Webcomics: What’s Cooking?, 30 Characters, , Milestones: I’m Not Mad (2yrs), Dan and Mab’s Furry Adventures (DMFA) (10 years!)

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Chekhov’s Gun is an excellent tool if you are planning far enough ahead but it’s not the only way to do it. You can also seed items in your comic knowing that you’ll make use of them later as a means of resolving a plot you haven’t yet written.

I did just that in All over the house. During a time travel arc I planted a box with a capacitor and a soldering iron in it, which was supposed to be taken back in time and left to rescue the heroes. They forgot, so a paradox formed and in a later storyline, I used the paradox as the method of bringing in a bad guy.

When I wrote the box into the story, I was seeding a resolution to a plot I hadn’t decided on. I kept notes on this because it was a typical Chekhov’s Gun, and decided to cash it in a few months down the line.

So it’s not just pre-planning that works. You can seed, too.

WAIT!!! There was one episode of A Pup Named Scooby Doo where the gang made Freddie promise that he wouldn’t accuse Red Herring of being the monster, which of course was the ONLY TIME that Red actually was the culprit.

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