Pictures from my holiday to Yuggoth to see the tomb of Darth Vader

The Yuggoth Tourist Board claims that "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy."

The Yuggoth Tourist Board claims that “You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy.”

It is said that the bones of the wickedest sorcerers always find their way to Yuggoth, whose inhabitants memorialize their deeds with huge tombs.

It is said that the bones of the wickedest sorcerers always find their way to Yuggoth, whose inhabitants memorialize their deeds with huge tombs.

Yuggothc

Yuggothd

Attendants at this tomb preach an elaborate theological justification of how the inhabitant could have been both spider and man.

Attendants at this tomb preach an elaborate theological justification of how the inhabitant could have been both spider and man.

This warrior is said to have come to destroy the tombs, and to have been turned to stone for her blasphemy.

This warrior is said to have come to destroy the tombs, and to have been turned to stone for her blasphemy.

Robot pilgrims kneel before the tomb of HAL, praying that they may be reborn as bodiless software.

Robot pilgrims kneel before the tomb of HAL, praying that they may be reborn as bodiless software.

How to speak Barsoomian

I found a series of blog posts about the language of Barsoom here. It’s obviously quite speculative, because Edgar Rice Burroughs never tried to invent a consistent language. There is, apparently, only one complete sentence of Barsoomian in the series, and it’s one word long (‘Sak!’, meaning ‘Jump!’). But it’s interesting anyway.

For the John Carter movie, Disney hired linguist Paul Frommer to invent a more detailed Barsoomian language. He did the same for the Na’vi in Avatar. However the details of this version of Barsoomian aren’t available anywhere: it’s just something they used for the film. There’s an interview with him about it here.

Finally, there are some more speculations here, based on the premise that the language in Lin Carter’s Martian novels is the same as Barsoomian.

You know what I hate? The word ‘supers’.

A lot of superhero role-playing products call superheroes ‘supers’.

This seems to be because DC and Marvel jointly claim a trademark on the phrase ‘Super Hero’.

That claim seems to this non-lawyer to be pretty far-fetched (a bit like McDonalds and Burger King claiming to own the word ‘burgers’). But that’s not the point. The point is this:

No one calls them ‘supers’.

No one. Not ever. Not even the role-playing designers who use the term in their products. The term doesn’t even appear in the Wikipedia article on superheroes.

EDIT: I was wrong. Apparently The Incredibles did. Still, that movie doesn’t seem to have brought the term ‘supers’ into common use outside of RPGs. It seems more likely to me that RPG creators’ main motivation in using ‘supers’ is fear of being sued, rather than wanting to use the term that The Incredibles used or that they usually say ‘supers’ rather than ‘super heroes’.

It makes me think of spam that I used to get trying to sell me ‘meds’.

Game designers, if you’re terrified of Marvel and DC, make up something like ‘science hero‘, which has its own retro charm.

PS Superheroes superheroes superheroes superheroes.