19: Yuri is ‘the one’

This page contains one of my favourite moments in the story, one that is based directly on witness testimony. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but it sounds like Valeri Bykovsky was a thoughtful member of the squad. He too, seems to have been struck by Yuri’s character, and his sudden intuition that Yuri might be ‘the one’ has a real dramatic frisson to it. After all, everyone there is hoping that they too, will be ‘the one’.kaliningrad, vostok, baikonur, yuri gagarin the chosen one
I had a strange experience in drawing this page. Witnessing the failure of an R-7 launch must have been a chilling moment for the young hopefuls, and I tried to give them a variety of reactions. Only after finishing the last frame did I realise that the trainee cosmonaut behind and just to the right of Yuri looks just like my youngest son. He even has the same kind of reserved expression my son might wear in such a situation. It was a sharp reminder that these were real people, and of the personal commitment these young men – and their families – were making.

This entry was posted in Making a Graphic Novel, Sergei Korolev, Space dog, The Book, The Space Race, Yuri Gagarin, Yuri's Flying Machines, Yuri's life. Bookmark the permalink.

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