With my third draft I took on the advice of my tutors to remove the character of Doggett and replace him with Wyatt. Doggett only served a functional purpose with how he was written previously. By replacing him with Wyatt, a character whom I plan for having a larger role in subsequent episodes, it provides me with more opportunities to show glimpses of his character before I decide to develop him later on.
Additionally, for how I was going to show the visual link between William at 13 years old and older William at 21, I was deliberating on what I could do to address this. Eventually I decided on having John give William his Stetson hat with the red feather right before he gets killed and eight years later we see William with the same hat the first time we see him on the wagon. I felt this link further emphasised William’s relationship with his father and his quest to avenge him in the sense that the hat could sort of be a physical representation of William’s father.
With the bank robbery scene, I decided to rewrite this scene and add a physical altercation between Jenkins and Miriam after Jenkins rapes her and is caught by Wyatt. I added this because I felt that in the previous draft I needed a legitimate reason for Wyatt to be able to escape Jenkins in a way that felt natural. The physical altercation helped that. Furthermore, I also added in a sequence of how we see Jenkins escape the bank after he is caught by Wyatt. This was raised as an issue in the previous draft as it felt that sequence could end a lot cleaner if we see how Jenkins manages to escape.
Finally, I rewrote William and Jackson’s dialogue scene on the porch toward the end of the episode. I decided on making William be a bit more inquisitive in his questioning of Jackson and use this as an opportunity to shed some light on Jackson’s backstory. This way I could successfully establish that both William and Jackson have been through similar situations where they lost someone they care about to outlaws , giving Jackson a reason to agree to teach him.
The general response to this third draft, taking into account all of the changes above were mostly good. The main points of feedback I received was that I shouldn’t have made William too inquisitive as it gave away that power of that scene from Jackson. Also this scene ran in contrast with the previous scene between William and Jackson in that Jackson steadfastly refused him but now opens up to him with no dramatic development to warrant that. A way I was advised on how I could address this was to have Jackson have the power of that scene, and make William’s desire of learning about hunting outlaws link into his backstory that sheds sympathy from Jackson.
Additionally, I also got feedback from my tutor that the dialogue scene between Tessa and Sally needed to be a bit more flirty in order to achieve the necessary amount of romantic undertones to establish a subtle attraction between the two characters. One way I was advised on how I could tackle writing the dialogue of this scene was to write the scene from Sally’s perspective as if Sally was a man trying to chat Tessa up at the bar. This is definitely a technique that could help me nail this scene and achieve the romantic undertones I want. Also people mentioned that the way that the conversation segues into the reveal of the Nickelwood bank robbery was a bit clunky with the two men in the bar talking about it being too convenient. In response to this I’ve been thinking about ways I could get Tessa and Sally’s conversation to flow into revealing this information.
Finally my tutor recommended to me that I try and figure out a way to intercut the endings of the three running storylines (William, Tessa and Walters) in order to have a cleaner ending as the way I’ve written it now feels like there are three separate endings playing one after the other. This is something I had also been thinking about and I feel I’ll definitely address it in my fourth draft.