When The Realms Collide
For as long as anyone can remember the Realms have existed separately. But it wasn’t always so. Eons ago, in the earliest of days, when the gods walked among us, the Realms were one - united. The scribes recount of when the Demiurge descended from the Nexus, an event so cataclysmic that the Realms were forced apart. As time goes by the Realms gradually return to their natural state, but this eclipse has a profound impact on all those who inhabit them. Some see opportunity, others see strife, but one thing is for certain; nothing will ever be the same!
Children Of The Corn
It’s hard to say sometimes whether Purple Corn Studios is a product of Eclipse or the other way around. One thing’s for certain; the two will forever be linked. It all started in the mid ‘90s when the first incarnation of our collective was formed as a result our desire to be heard. Knowing our two cents would fall on deaf ears if we engaged in the conversation through the usual channels we instead opted to deliver our arguments in a more digestible and friendly way. Since we were all either artists or from artistic backgrounds it was only natural we opted for an art form as our medium and comics provided an accessible and appealing medium for visual storytelling and conveying ideas. But the comic book market, or in some cases lack thereof, presented us with many challenges. Interestingly, it was overcoming those challenges that ultimately made us into who we are today.
Be sure to check out A Corny Tale for a more in-depth look at our tumultuous history.
Myths & Paradigms
Numerous mythologies from all over the world have become the source material for many themes in Eclipse. We turned to those mythologies to explore the origins of many of those themes. Imagine our fascination when we discovered that many of the holes in those tales are easily patched with elements from others. Even more amazing was how different civilizations from different eras and areas, that never had any contact with one another, describe the exact same things. Intrigued by the idea of a universal mythology we began to craft a world in which all of these tales that we had turned to for answers are actually all part of a bigger design.
After having created our bigger thematic design based on our universal mythology we established a set of rules for - very simply put – how existence works. While those rules were meant to apply to our thematic universe they were surprisingly helpful in the real universe. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that numerous other communities had come to either very similar or identical conclusions. Delving into all the different mythologies meant that, at times, our research bordered on the anthropological and that’s how we came in contact with what is often referred to as contemporary paradigms. These are sets of beliefs, practices, philosophies and studies about the metaphysical in which mythologies often play an important role.
Different communities from all over the world autonomously publish literature conveying these paradigms, always with the goal of helping the reader to better understand the world, have a sense of purpose in life and deal with its many hardships and the absurdity of humanity in a constructive manner. When we first came up with the idea for comic all those years ago, that was exactly what we set out to do. We embraced the idea of conveying contemporary paradigms in comic book form and ran with it ever since.
Subverting The Tropes
From a writer’s perspective mythologies are a nightmare. Not only has the story essentially already been written but whatever original elements you contribute are then very prone to tropes. This is one of the reasons why creating the universal mythology was interesting. It is also why we steer clear of the usual suspects. You won’t find any Greek, Roman or Norse mythology in Eclipse. Egyptian myths do play a big role but that has everything to do with the fact that Egyptian mythology offers something that pretty much every other pantheon in human history doesn’t; an explanation as to where the demiurge comes from. That little tidbit in turn plays an important role in the creation of the universe of Eclipse - pun intended.
What sets Eclipse apart from many other tales more so than its source material however is its lack of a clearly definable protagonist. Instead, the lore is broken down into arcs that each have their own sets of protagonists while all sharing the same source of antagonism and plot motivators. This not only allows the writers to come up with fresh dynamics within the casts of characters of each chapter but also avoids any tropes that inevitably come with long running recurring characters.
The story of Eclipse is driven by sources of antagonism and plot motivators rather than it’s protagonists. This has resulted in a formula in which each chapter has its own protagonists. The way the canon is set up is that each chapter, because it has its own heroes, can function as a stand-alone story as well as be part of a bigger design. Those chapters are then part of arcs that each have their own sources of antagonism and plot motivators, and are in turn also part of a bigger design that is that is canon of Eclipse. To make sense of such a gargantuan universe we consider it to be an extended universe that forms the backdrop to different stories rather than that of a singular story line. We based that principle in part on something that is often described in the contemporary paradigms that served as the source material for how that universe work. They describe a nexus of knowledge called the Akashic Records. In 1927 writer Alice A. Baily wrote in her book Light of the Soul:
"The akashic record is like an immense photographic film, registering all the desires and earth experiences of our planet. Those who perceive it will see pictured thereon: The life experiences of every human being since time began, the reactions to experience of the entire animal kingdom, the aggregation of the thought-forms of a karmic nature (based on desire) of every human unit throughout time. Herein lies the great deception of the records. Only a trained occultist can distinguish between actual experience and those astral pictures created by imagination and keen desire."
For the most part stories recounted in our intellectual property all take place in the same extended universe, which we took to calling the Akashaverse.