Sunday, December 16, 2018

Season 13, Episode 5

Episode 5: Hope Ultima
A long time ago, Lady Penelope and Jack Harkness exchanged farewells on the lonely dunes of Boeshane Peninsula. As they parted, he shared with her the Face of Boe’s secret prediction: the Time Lady and the immortal Captain would meet again, one last time, for one last case of cosmic force majeure, for one last, desperate stand. And now this time has come.  

The farewells on the dunes of Boeshane Peninsula occurred at the end of season five’s seventh episode (The Face of the Future) – or, in other terms, eight seasons and three regenerations ago. And more than five years ago for us in the real world. 

I always knew that this “one last stand” would come but I was waiting for the ideal moment – and for enough game time and real time to pass, so that it would really feel like “a long time ago, in another life”. 

Of course, Captain Jack’s ultimate return has everything to do with the threat of the Dissonance, the current’s season recurring meme / theme / gimmick. As a unique, living Fixed Point in Time, surely he will be of use when the Web of Time comes crashing down…

But for now, we are taking a break. The thirteenth season of Lady Penelope’s Odyssey will resume in a few months, for its second tier. See you then!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Season 13, Episode 4

Episode 4: Turn On, Tune In, Drop Out
Dorian takes Penelope on a trip to 1967 San Francisco, right in the middle of the Summer of Love. As her companion indulges in the ambient zeitgeist of peace, sex, drugs and rock’n’roll, the Time Lady finds herself transported to another reality, where JFK’s Camelot never fell and psychics are hunted down by the FBI. Welcome to the Altered States of America!

Obviously, this episode had a very strong Philip K. Dick vibe, with elements borrowed from The Man in the High Castle (well, without the Nazis, obviously) and various other PKD novels and stories involving alternate realities, twisted perceptions, psycho-active drugs and hidden conspiracies (and then some). 

Other sources of inspiration included the DW episode Inferno and Steven Moffat’s Silence, who were re-imagined here as the Unseen, the results of a secret US government experiment on psychic powers gone terribly wrong… 

This scenario also allowed me to reveal a bit more about the Dissonance (a.k.a. the Multiplicity), the temporal phenomenon which will be this season’s main continuity gimmick /meme.

Last but not least, this episode included cameos by JFK, Jackie Kennedy, J. Edgar Hoover and Philip K. Dick himself.

And now for something completely different...

I've updated the TOYBOX, my PDF compilation of house rules for Doctor Who, now in its fourth incarnation. No new stuff this time but some tweaks and fine-tuning of existing articles, including an even simpler and quicker variant combat system and some (decidedly inescapable) clarifications on Story points... 

The new, streamlined TOYBOX can be found HERE