We’re back and we’re in a moral quandary. It’s fair to say that the gods and monsters of the Mythos are beyond human comprehension. The problem is that we are human (or at least that’s our story) but we still need to find ways to write and talk about morality in the Cthulhu Mythos. Is our only option to talk about the ineffable from a human perspective? Or do we get meta and accept that the Mythos is a human invention and any moral opacity is of our own creation? Ultimately, we’ll probably just argue a lot and go off on tangents. That’s served us well enough for the last nine years.
Main Topic: Morality in the Cthulhu Mythos
We’re continuing last episode’s discussion of morality. This time, we’re looking at the role of morality in the Cthulhu Mythos. Do the entities of the Mythos follow any kind of morality we can comprehend? How do we best use antagonists who exist outside our concepts of good and evil? And do they always have to be antagonists anyway?
Things we mention in this episode include:
- Morality in RPGs
- “The Call of Cthulhu” by HP Lovecraft
- Mythos Deities: Cthulhu
- Quatermass and the Pit (1967)
- Event Horizon (1997)
- “The Dunwich Horror” by HP Lovecraft
- The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by HP Lovecraft
- Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys
- The Private Life of Elder Things by Adrian Tchaikovsky, Keris McDonald and Adam Gauntlett
- At the Mountains of Madness by HP Lovecraft
- “The Shadow Over Innsmouth” by HP Lovecraft
- The Two-Headed Serpent
- All Flesh Must Be Eaten
- Dawn of the Dead (1978)
- “The Hounds of Tindalos” by Frank Belknap Long
- Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)
- “A Warning to the Curious” by MR James
- Mythos Deities: Nodens
- Mythos Deities: Nyarlathotep
- Trickster gods
- Friday the 13th franchise
Mazes and Monsters 40th Anniversary
Plumeria Pictures are releasing a special 40th anniversary edition of the legendary Mazes and Monsters, starring a shockingly young Tom Hanks. Those of you with long memories (or access to Google) may know this weird piece of RPG history, very loosely and inaccurately inspired by the tragic story of Dallas Egbert. The film has become notorious as part of the Satanic panic of the 1980s, but it doesn’t really fit into that camp. It’s something far stranger and quite unique.
If you need more of a reason to pick up this release, it comes with a special commentary track recorded by Seth Skorkowsky, Veronica from Cthulhu and Friends, Joe & Eoghan from How We Roll, and our very own Scott Dorward. We spend the film’s runtime marvelling at its strangeness, talking a bit about the history that inspired it, and becoming increasingly confused by all the hats.
A Weekend With Good Friends
The next Weekend With Good Friends is approaching fast. This is the online RPG convention organised by our lovely listeners and hosted on our Discord server. We have a web page with important details and links, which we will update as things progress.
The important dates are:
- 30th September-13th October 2022 – GM signups
- 21st October–27th October – Player signups
- 28th October – Lottery results are announced
- 4th–6th November – A Weekend With Good Friends
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Just picking up on Scott’s point about nonviolent solutions to alien menaces (around 43m 20s), take a look at The Tomorrow People story “The Blue and the Green”, which builds up a Quatermass & the Pit kind of tribal violence but has a very surprising denouement. Surprising to 2020s tastes, anyway.