There are few things an artist anticipates more than seeing someone else take a crack at drawing his own characters, and so this strip in particular is Christmas Day for me.  Lots of squealing and rolling around on the ground the day this page came in the email.  On top of that, working with T on this storyline helped me solidify how Tony should be.  I had some bare thread ideas on who he was about, now that he was undeadened, but T began writing him as this singular, focused, whiff-of-vengeance-obsessed spirit who would not rest until Head Alien is gone, and a lot of stuff began to click into place in future storylines.  He’s a ghost, and he has unfinished business.

So here’s the first real rendering of It’s Walky characters by the Campbell/Waltrip team. Jason has a supremely adaptable style that was invaluable to Fansthough crossovers like this also benefited from an audience a lot friendlier to artistic experimentation than the last decade or so has seemed to be.

Dialogue-wise, if I put my insecurities on hold, I think I did a reasonably good job of encapsulating everybody into a line or two of dialogue each that clued the Fans reader into what they were all about.
Joyce’s lines surprised me, but all the Squad members radiate immaturity in different ways, so somebody has to be the maturest, and Joyce did seem to be slipping into that role, if only to protect Walky (“I know you can do this,” etc.). That’s a contrast with her original character concept and a lot of her remaining surface mannerisms, which gives her some interesting layers at this point. That’s no surprise to you guys, I’m sure, but I was in a new position to appreciate it.
The Columbia space shuttle disaster would’ve been just two months and change ago when this page was first published. Some might question the taste of invoking it in this story, but I think it’s a good way to contrast the mood in the air– Walky’s like, “Whee, mecha battle!”– with the anguish on the ground, and a reversal of the “It’s just like that show” joke mentioned earlier.