The character that never was. Until now.

It's no secret that I've been working on Brother & Sister for a long time. I posted a blog about it recently, where I spilled some of my thoughts out on the changes and process that has led to the current "reboot" of the series. I had one other thing I wanted to share in that post, but it was getting long, and it wasn't going to make sense until I released Episode 4 anyway.

Now that Brother & Sister: Ep 4 is out, I can bring it back up! (Check out the episode if you haven't, by the way. I'm quite proud of it.)

This Nicole character was supposed to be part of Brother & Sister for a looong time! I think she was supposed to appear in Episode 13 or 14 of the original series. I had her character model already completed and ready to go. And then, I stopped making any more episodes before I ever got there.

As I slowly got back up to the new Brother & Sister episodes that I have released now, one thing that I kept doing was trying to update the character models and color palette. Actually, even with each of the 4 "Episodes" that I recently released, the character models were tweaked or even redone entirely. I think I would say that the models are on their 5th major iteration. #1 were the original Brother and Sister character models, #2 were their Easter Egg models I used in my early Flash animation days, #3 were their models from Episode 1, #3 were their models from Episode 2 (which I completely redid) , and #4 are their Episode 4 models, where I went in to fix one small proportion issue I wasn't happy with on one character, and ended up redoing large chunks of every single character, especially when it came to height and arm length. They've actually received multiple small tweaks in between each of these models as well, which is funny because all of these supposed tweaks and changes really aren't that visible. By the way, THIS TIME I think I might be ready to stop tweaking models between every single episode!

The funny thing here is that the Nicole character model has been there the entire time, receiving the same iterations as all of the rest! Even though nobody else was ever seeing the character except me! I was actually quite sure at multiple points throughout the years that I would be the only one to ever see this character.

Some Nicole character model iterations. From left to right: #1, from the original series. #2, her Episode 1 iteration (which would be the third one), #3, her Episode 2 iteration, #4, her Episode 3 iteration (which is sort of Iteration 4.5), and finally, her current incarnation seen finally in Episode 4.

Actually, I'm lying a little bit here. There was a single time that her character DID appear before the recently released Episode 4. But it was such an inside joke (and I'm aware I have always had a problem with including inside jokes) that I was probably the one and only person to ever understand it. Until NOW! It was the short Brother and Sister easter egg I included in the Flash release of "Dan Short 1: Homework" in 2009 (jesus, almost 10 years ago...). Here is that clip, for those of you that care.

That was what I would call "Iteration #2" of Nicole's character model. And it was used in an animation! But the joke about "Who the hell is this?" probably fell on deaf ears back then. Is this joke funnier in retrospect, now that she's finally a character? Probably not, haha.

I think that's about it with what I have to talk about here. Nicole has finally seen the light of day, and I can breathe easy knowing that another character running around in my brain for so long has finally been released into the wild. Though this wasn't quite the same level of "FINALLY!" as getting the Fudda series completed was, I still feel some sense of creative relief knowing that Nicole has finally come to life.



-Alex Zajicek