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 Story Seeds

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GoldenBard

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PostSubject: Story Seeds   Thu Aug 18, 2011 11:17 pm

The way my mind works, sometimes I come up with interesting ideas for stories and concepts that I have neither the time nor the inclination to follow up on. I'm sure there are others this happens to, so I thought it might be a good idea to share these ideas in case anyone else wanted to do something with them.

The first thing that strikes me about dealing with these PD properties is that (unlike the original creators) we can cross from one publisher (or even time period) to another, combining characters who share similarities and might work well together, but couldn't originally. So, here are the first few that I've come up with:

REANIMATING THE DEAD
The Purple Zombie (Eastern Color Co.) was a corpse reanimated by scientists with superpowers. Did these scientists ever work with the scientists who created Iron Vic (Columbia) and Atomic Thunderbolt (Regor), who were nearly dead when they were given powers? Were the techniques used similar to those used by the villainous Grand Zombie (Fox) and Professor Klar (Standard)? Was there any connection to the earlier zombie-creating villains Dr. Death (pulps), Virus (Italian comic strip), Andreas Vollmer (French novel), and Zolok (movie serial)? How are they related to the much earlier works of Henry West, the reanimator (Lovecraft) and Dr. Victor Frankenstein (Mary Shelly, although the monster also appeared in numerous comics, esp. from Prize)? Could the heroic characters be our only hope against a zombie apocalypse as the villains join forces?

RING-A-DING-DING
Did you ever notice how many characters get their powers from magic rings? There's Siegfried (mythology), Atom Blake, the Boy Wizard (Fawcett), Craig Carter (Centaur), Golden Knight (Fox), Tiger Girl (Fiction House), Typhon (Fox), Black Orchid (Consolidated), Blue Lady (Centaur), Captain Red Cross (Harvey), Echo (Chesler), Red Rover (Street & Smith), Scarb (Nedor), Thesson (Nedor), Wonder Man (Fox), and Lady Satan (Chesler). Could these rings all share a common origin? Might the characters be drawn to one another by this connection? Might they be forced to work against each other due to the rings coming from opposing "factions" of the creators? And why do the rings only seem to work for the good guys (I couldn't find any villains with similar rings)?

HOLY MAN HEROES
Another group of characters that might be interesting to see come together for some reason would be all the characters that owe their powers and adventuring careers to the mystics of Tibet: Chandu the Magician (radio show), The Green Lama (pulp/Crestwood), Invisible Dick (Adventure magazine), Mandrake the Magician (King Features), Gunmaster (Hillman), Amazing Man (Centaur), Flame & Flame Girl (Fox), Human Meteor (Harvey), Wonder Man (Fox), Illuso (Fox), Jack Flynn (Holyoke), Magga the Magnificent (Spark), and Mr. Mystic (Eisner). They are opposed by Ghengis Khan (Harvey), Natas (French novel), The Great Question (Centaur), and The Sons of the Atom (Centaur). Could they all be connected to Agartha, the ancient kingdom in the same area that appeared in a Victorian novel? Might there be some kind of religious war brewing between the factions that created these characters?
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SuperHeroFan



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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:36 pm

I was reading though the list and I couldn't find a couple, and I found one that wasn't on the list. Since none of the rings did the same thing, maybe if they all were within a given area, the rings would all balance out, giving each of them the same set of powers?

Here's who I didn't find..Siegfried, Red Rover, Adam Blake, and Cpt. Red Cross. Diamond Jack seemed to be new to me.

(Or the rings 'pull' each other to them, and then deliver a warning, a message, or instructions on how to use all functions of the rings. Seperately, the rings can do one or two things, but when together, other abilities are unlocked.)

Maybe if the rings are together and the abilities are all unlocked, it would be too much power for an evil villain. They will only work with people who are basically 'good'.

Just my .02 cents.

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GoldenBard

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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Mon Oct 06, 2014 10:53 am

Here's another seed that occurred to me the other day. I was dealing with a very nice young lady who's last name was "Keane." Of course, I thought of criminologist "Ascott Keane," who fought the evil Doctor Satan. So, I was thinking, "What if she was Ascott Keane's granddaughter, and Doctor Satan somehow wound up in modern times (time travel, cryogenics, whatever) and came after her? She'd have a rough time ahead of her..." Following this like of thinking, I figured there were plenty of old villains this might work with. The old Flash TV show did something along these lines one episode, and it seemed like a fun way to revitalize an old villain.
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captainwhizz

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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Tue Oct 07, 2014 3:25 am

I like the idea of the ring thing. Who made them? Why? Where/ how did they make them? Are any more lost or scattered around? Perhaps the dwarves of Nordic legend made them for people? But then where do the Egyptian/ Middle Eastern rings (Aladdin) come from? Rival smith-gods?

I'm definitely going to be featuring undead in my universe, so thanks for listing some of the zombie-related characters.

I had also noticed, whilst browsing PDSH, just how many people had Tibet-related back-stories. It's crazy.
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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Wed Oct 08, 2014 5:23 pm

CaptainWhizz,

I like the idea of several pantheons of gods, or their various 'smiths that could make the rings. Each might have basic functions shared by all, but have one or two functions that are exclusive to the area in with they are found?

Ex - dust storms being made by a ring in desert regions, ice/hail storms in colder climates (just my .02 cents)

Possibly function together while they have separate ring wielders, or villain X is trying to find them all and hopes they will all function for the same person, not individually as they do now.
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Heckfire



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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Mon Oct 13, 2014 3:28 pm

@GoldenBard: About your "Reanimating the Dead" seed, I've actually got a revamp/background plot thread in my PDSH superhero story that connects Mr. Monster, Dr. Herbert West, the Night of the Living Dead, and (spoilers) Bozo the Iron Man.

See, I went back and reread the "Re-Animator" serial, and I noticed a key element that everyone forgets: the ONE time the serum worked without the psychotic/cannibalistic side effects was when it was used in conjunction with a SECOND serum, a new type of embalming fluid that halts all cellular decay at the molecular level. The guy who was brought back using it, a door-to-door salesman (I think), was coherent and reasonable...until he remembered West was the one that murdered him, and remembered dying as well, and went screaming mad.

Basically, the idea was that Dr. Jim Stearne was investigating the still-open case of Dr. West's murder and the disappearance of his unnamed lab assistant (the narrator from the story, who never was ever given a name), who in turn (for reasons that I still have to work out) used the dual process on him before he was murdered by the Headless Major (also from the story) and his zombie horde. Stearne is able to escape due to now being functionally immortal, but loses track of the Major and ends up working for the U.S. government during WWII, specializing in supernatural cases. In order to keep the serum from destabilizing his mind, embalming fluid or not, he creates a superheroic identity for himself based on his old nickname, reasoning that the "simplified black and white morality of the comic book heroes" will act as a bulwark to his possible madness: Mr. Monster.

With this new identity, Stearne becomes a member of the government-sponsored hero team, the Sentinels of Society, a team he still serves with today. As the years go by, however, and the cumulative damage to his immortal yet unhealing body require he abandon his civilian identity entirely, he also abandons the "Mr. Monster" name in favor of "Doc Stearne" in order to remember who he really is (and, in my case, in deference to Michael T. Gilbert's ongoing work with the name). As part of his service, however, he has donated samples of his blood in the hopes that the reanimation serum can be replicated; after decades of failed copies, he stopped doing it willingly, but samples are still taken during the periods he's being repaired post-mission or in his cryogenic "coffin" between missions.

So, yeah...Mr. Monster is my setting's analogue to Captain America, and the Re-Animator Formula is the analogue to the Super-Soldier Serum. Of course, since the only one who knew about the embalming fluid was torn to pieces by a zombie horde...

One such failed batch got out into the ground water of the New Jersey Pine Barrens, resulting in a horrific night back in 1967 when the recently dead returned to life with a craving for human flesh. While the National Guard (aided by Doc Stearne) were easily able to contain the outbreak, news and witnesses had to be silenced, either by bribe or coercion, and the cover story concocted involved a movie being released to the public under the name that the event was called in the papers: "The Night of the Living Dead."

...I know the movie takes place in Pennsylvania. Cover story, remember?

One of the victims was a self-proclaimed musclehead and would be "made man" named "Iron" Mike Bozowski, who was paralyzed from the waist down due to injuries he suffered protecting his friend from the zombies. While his buddy would go on to eventually take over one of the Three Families of my Iron City setting, passing the title to his son (whose daughter would later become the heroine Golden Girl), Mike would turn to fixing cars and, later, learn about engineering and other mechanical subjects, as well as teaching self-defense to local kids once he retired in his 70s. One of his students, Renee' Taylor, would end up moving in with him after her parents threw her out, so he was the one she contacted when, while evading some punks, she stumbled upon a hidden, abandoned underground museum devoted to the fallen and forgotten heroes of yesterday: the Vault of Dead Justice. It would fall on him to get the broken and disused gadgets working again, helping her create her own new heroic identity from the ashes of the others.

...of course, the giant robot suit at the back of the Vault, with it's frozen, dopey smile, seems to constantly be watching Mike, as if trying to will him to repair it as well. Nah, just his imagination...still, it couldn't hurt to see if there's anything he can do to get it running...
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GoldenBard

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PostSubject: Re: Story Seeds   Wed Oct 15, 2014 12:41 am

Interesting concept, Heckfire. Like I said, I find it really fun to see where two characters from different companies/media/genres are similar and try to create a connection between them.

Playing with your idea, some of those other zombie characters I mentioned might be the results of someone getting a hold of one of the vials of Doc Sterne's blood and trying to duplicate the serum without government sanction...
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