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Hollywood Babylon

Hollywood! Where once stood only orange groves, now the very stuff of dreams is made real and given to the adoring crowds - the crowds that worship these gods and goddesses of the silver screen, unknowing that behind the scenes these very gods are the puppets of higher powers, all immersed in the maelstrom of drugs, alcohol, debauchery and illegal sex. And looming over it all, their very own cyclopean ruins - the vast, 10-storey, mile-long Babylon set from Intolerance.

Hollywood, 1928 - Five employees of the Warner Brothers studio become involved in something strange, even for Hollywood - strange, and altogether nightmarish

Purrdence : "Mary Pickford - she was the Angelina Jolie of her day. Without the kids."

Drhoz GM : "Just as well it only rains 5 days a week in Hollywood... er, five days a year."
Josh : Yes, I was wondering when Los Angeles became Seattle.
Purrdence : "Must have been that earthquake"

The evening after the first day's filming, the group decide take a break from their severe misgivings about the film, to go visit the refurbished set

Gunter Smits (prop maker PC) : "Come, come, I have a massive erection to show you"
Drhoz, GM : "Has Zanuck's Over-compensation Complex became contagious?"

Drhoz, GM : "Gunter, Zanuck also want you to build a machine to spray the extras with fruit juice. To give them an appropriately Biblical skin tone. Hey, they have to something with all those oranges."

Celia Chamber's player *checking her character sheet* : "What skill does 'Rolling a Doobie' come under?"

John Ford-Welham ( PC Actor ) *getting defensive about not joining in the drunken, drugged shenanigans* : "Hey, I drink. I do cocaine. I just didn't want any weed, alright?"

John hears something snuffling around outside the prop shed, and sticks his head out the window to see what it is

Drhoz, GM : "Well, that's interesting - they're drinking, but you're the one seeing pink elephants"

The rest of the party stagger out to see what he's up to.

Drhoz, GM : "You see John Ford-Welham stalking a pink elephant through the ruins of Babylon."

Zanuck expects the actors to do publicity interviews for Photoplay and the other fan zines

Press : " ...and what's this we hear about a possible romance between you and Mr Douglas?"
Celia Chamber, monotone : "Yes, there is a certain love interest between me and whatsisname"

Press : "What's it like working with the talented Hungarian import, sir?"
Mark Douglas, male lead PC : "Mr Curtiz is a very fine director - totally professional"
GM as Curtiz, screaming abuse at the extras : "Chins! Beards go on chins!"
Mark Douglas : "This is going to be an Epic - a really great movie."
GM as Curtiz : "Shit-for-brains!"

Film culminates in the flooding of the set. 15,000 tonnes of water is dumped in, without warning the extras. This actually happened, in real life, as did most of the other bizarre aspects I used in this game.

Gunter is up at the reservoir, trying to forestall disaster by sabotaging the sluice gates.

Gunter, trying to smash the mechanism with a pipe wrench : "I thought there was a cockroach"

Half the party is already insane and lost in identity confusion (leaving players playing actors playing characters but who now think they actually are the characters - it was that sort of situation, and starting to go a bit metaphysical). Still coherent and able to separate the Dreamlands from what is laughably called Reality, but stuck on a rapidly flooding and collapsing set, that is simultaneously the DOOMed city of Sarnath, surrounded by hundreds of screaming extras, a horde of ghosts, and a Great Old One, John stands his ground.

John Ford-Welham : "I'm going to act my ass off in this scene. Because it may well be the last thing my ass does."

Ran a bit overtime, but a lot of that can be put down to the players being helpless with laughter at the image of Great Old Ones on rollers skates - XanaDOOM. Reducing me to groans of pain with "In Hollywood, floodery will get you everywhere" didn't help either.


( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 5th, 2009 05:23 am (UTC)
Apr. 5th, 2009 10:13 pm (UTC)
cool - and MY GOD, I've just realised that Kevin Kline even got Fairbanks' body language spot on in the Chaplin biopic
Apr. 5th, 2009 11:28 am (UTC)
Wow... The xanadu lyrics kinda make sense.
I was going to make some slight changes but hey...

A place where nobody dared to go
The forbidden love that we came to know
They call it XanaDOOM

And now
Open your eyes and see
What we have made is real
We are in XanaDOOM
Apr. 5th, 2009 10:08 pm (UTC)
Apr. 6th, 2009 01:14 am (UTC)

That one's going to be bringing a smile to my face for awhile.

Plus, the image of Cthulhu trying to rollerskate is just classic!
Apr. 5th, 2009 12:36 pm (UTC)

Reminds me again of Kim Newman's "Big Fish"- Raymond Chandler meets Lovecraft in late 1930's Hollywood:

"Eh, she may be every sailor's wet dream, but to me she looks like Mr. Moto"

"He said a whole lot of weird words- Beatnik crap, I reckon. Cthoo- whatever. Yog-Gimme a break. He said something was going to come out of the deep sea and swarm over the land, and he didn't mean U-Boats."
Apr. 5th, 2009 01:02 pm (UTC)
I LOVE your icon :D
Apr. 5th, 2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
good one, isn't it :D
Apr. 5th, 2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
I HAVE to find and read more Kim Newman
Apr. 6th, 2009 06:23 am (UTC)

I have most of his stuff if you want to borrow it, including Big Fish. My favourite of his works is ANNO DRACULA...
Apr. 6th, 2009 12:15 pm (UTC)
yes please! also "Black Man With A Horn"
Apr. 6th, 2009 04:49 pm (UTC)

That's T.E.D Klein- but I have that too *g* all of DARK GODS is worth reading, but "Black Man with a Horn" and "Children of the Kingdom" manage to out-Lovecraft Lovecraft *g*
Apr. 6th, 2009 12:37 am (UTC)

this sounds entirely too plausible:P
Apr. 6th, 2009 12:16 pm (UTC)
Apr. 14th, 2009 04:41 am (UTC)
The SwanCon Challenge!
So, how did it go?
Apr. 14th, 2009 11:46 am (UTC)
Re: The SwanCon Challenge!
lukewarm. I think they were expecting combat
Apr. 15th, 2009 06:20 am (UTC)
Re: The SwanCon Challenge!
Ah well.

Can't please everyone.

I for one thought it was great.
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )

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