A mash-up of cutthroat competition, the verbal tics of our characters and special guest PJ Scott-Blankenship for a Greg Q&A. This is the Afterparty, where we sit down after every episode to break down our game and answer your questions about how to play at home.
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- music: brandongrugle.bandcamp.com
Cast & Crew
- Dungeon Master: Eric Silver
- TR8c (Tracey): Brandon Grugle
- Inara Harthorn: Amanda McLoughlin
- Johnny B. Goodlight: Michael Fische
- Multitude: multitude.productions
Amanda: Hey, Hi, Hello! Welcome to the After Party, where I am Tortipolis’s most eligible bachelorette, so-
Brandon: I am Tortipolis’s most bacel- most el-bigible ba- wow. Hold on
Brandon: I am Tortipolis’s most- most eligible bachelorette
Eric: Sorry, Brandon hasn’t spoke for like two hours
Amanda: Brandon had a buffer. He had a buffer
Brandon: I forgot how to speak!
Michael: I think you’re all mistaken and I am Tortipolis’s most eligible dad slash bachelorette
Amanda: Okay, I’ve got it. Brandon, you are Tortipolis’s ‘Sleeping Beauty’
Amanda: Fish, you are Tortipolis’s ‘Hello Dolly,’ and I am Tortipolis’s ‘Aladdin’
Eric: And I would say the most eligible bachelorette in Tortipolis is the Bachelorette, Representative Brink
Amanda: I am so freaking excited. Eric, during the ceremony situation I thought first of ‘Hunger Games’ and then I thought ‘Thor: Ragnarok’, so what exactly was inspiring you as you did this whole biz?
Eric: Yeah, I really wanted to smash up my favorite competitions in recent memory. I read ‘Planet Hulk,’ which is the-
Michael: Oh my god, so gooooooood!
Eric: Which is the comic that inspired-
Michael: SO GOOOOOD!
Eric: It’s the comic that inspired the Hulk parts-
Michael: [whispering] So good
Eric: -of the recent movie ‘Thor: Ragnarok.’ Basically it’s Hulk fell aground of this planet after he gets thrown into like a massive wormhole, and then he basically fights his way out through like being a gladiator, so he’s trapped in this colosseum and he’s trapped in this - I guess he’s like underneath the colosseum when he’s still like scrapping it out so like in ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ how like Thor runs around in a circle-
Eric: -and he doesn’t know how to get out. It’s like that. But it’s the Bachelor Mansion where you’re stuck in which is actually kind of like a Cheesecake Factory
Eric: Which is the best way I could think to describe it. So, I was trying to combine three very cutthroat competitions. One is ‘The Hunger Games’- this idea that like audience can affect what’s happening in the actual game, and hopefully I introduced this mechanic of using the proscenium arch or the thrust stage within the colosseum, and this is the place where you kind of like do your pleas or your confessionals, if we’re going for reality shows. We also have ‘Planet Hulk’ - this like straight up gladiator all-out fight where people can get like political gain, and like we’ll see what happens during this game, but in ‘Planet Hulk,’ Hulk rises to like pretty political folk hero status by winning all of this stuff. The stakes are high in ‘Planet Hulk’ and in ‘Thor: Ragnarok.’ And then of course ‘The Bachelor’ and ‘The Bachelorette,’ which just came back as we were playing this game, which is the most ridiculous cutthroat competition I could think of
Michael: So I’ve never actually really watched ‘The Bachelor’ or ‘Bachelorette’ but I’ve seen ‘Big Brother.’
Michael: I’ve seen a lot of ‘Big Brother’, either ‘Big Brother’ US and ‘Big Brother’ in other countries, and I’m like really excited for like the kind of relationship building- in positive and negative ways- that’s going to happen between all these people. Chad’s obviously a big best friend for everyone.
Michael: We love Chad
Michael: We all love Chad.
Amanda: Just hanging there…
Michael: Just being a hoo-man.
Eric: Oh, Chad the hoo-man
Michael: The hoo-man. And then I also really like the ‘Hunger Games’ aspect, or the audience interaction can also mean benefits where how Johnny got the potion - really loved that. I’m gonna definitely use that to my advantage
Amanda: Or last season of ‘Big Brother,’ there was this whole mechanic of the temptation so America would decide which member of the Big Brother house got tempted with an item that would have benefits for that person, but consequences for the whole house, so-
Michael: Or “America’s Player” -
Michael: - during ‘Big Brother’ as well
Amanda: Exactly, exactly
Michael: Where they have to do whatever America votes on
Eric: Reality show competition shows are one of my favorite like guilty pleasures because it’s really the combination of relationship building with like bananas gaming and competition, and I wanna see what it looks like in Dungeons & Dragons.
You know what, Brandon, I don’t know what was wrong with your mic but I just like didn’t hear you this episode
Michael: No, we checked in a lot. And we were hearing full, the mic was working-
Amanda: Full silence, man
Michael: Everything was great! All that deactivation…
Brandon: I had a… dentist thing…
Eric: You got a root canal, checked some emails
Amanda: You started the computer and then left
Eric: I don’t think we’ve seen the full like shut-down of Tracey. This has definitely happened before where he feels so contrite that he just kind of collapsed, like I’m thinking about when he attacked Greg, but like we got the full four hour shutdown here. Is this like a game mechanic? Is this like another thing that you’re nerfing* your barbarian against?
Brandon: Eh… I guess it’s a little bit of a nerf* but to me it’s like logical in that - we’ve talked about this before but like Tracey’s rage switch is essentially like a nos switch in the venerated - what do you call something that’s like eight movies long? Series?
Eric: It’s still the venerated-
Eric: The venerated
Brandon: The Fast and the Furious Dynasty
Brandon: Where he turns it on and he attacks whatever threat is most apparent, and in this specific instance I think what was happening was that he was split between sort of like old rage mode, where he was just attacking whatever was attacking his party, and he was also split for sweetly Oatcake who was just a poor defenseless creature who was being attacked by these mud monsters, and I think he was sort of split between these two things where he had to make a choice. And you know, honestly I’m not sure exactly what happened as a player
Amanda: Chose wrong for the party
Michael: Overcomplicated if anything. Not really chose wrong, but just added a nice little complication
Brandon: Well I think the interesting thing was that we played this great game mechanic where we did before where it’s like we had a minute to think, in game time, a minute to think of what we wanted to do and for me it was like from the top I was like “Tracey’s doing this.”
Brandon: Like he knows what he’s going to do. Like there was not a really a question…
Amanda: No deliberation
Michael: And so Amanda and i had to look at each other and figure out what we were going to do to-
Amanda: [laughing] Okay, well shit.
Michael: -to try to deal with the team
Brandon: I mean like as a player I feel bad because obviously I want to help you guys, but that’s just not what Tracey would have done in that instance
Amanda: And that happened right after a very extreme event, which is that we met our doppelgängers - our sort of darkest timeline versions of ourselves
Michael: I wouldn’t call it darkest - I mean, Southern
Amanda: I mean it’s the underworld timeline
Michael: a Southern timeline
Amanda: A sort of gloomier slightly darkly version of ourselves, and by darkly I mean just different, because I fell in love with my doppelgänger, Brandon was full of disgust, and Michael was like, “I don’t. What. How do I. Huh?”
Michael: Well I’m gonna do the affectation, if that’s apparently how Alice Sunbeam thinks that Undying Light worshippers talk, I’m going to do that while I’m in front of her so that she like... yeah, great.
Brandon: Here’s the trouble. I’m actually from the South and I’m worried that I’m actually am going to start speaking Southern this entire game, this entire arc
Amanda: I’m delighted
Michael: There was a moment where you did - we called you out on a bit of Southern…
Michael: Yeah, I hope I’m not too insulting, by the way
Brandon: Oh, you are. Don’t worry about it
Michael: Okay good, just insulting enough
Amanda: I mean you’re here on the podcast, Brandon, so you’re just implicitly signing off on whatever it is that we do
Michael: You represent all of Texas
Brandon: I do!
Eric: That’s true
Amanda: All of the South really. South of the Mason-Dixon that’s you
Brandon: That’s why I still live there
Eric: How did you- how do you feel seeing these people who seem to be matched up with you guys?
Amanda: I’m amazed. I feel like the legend of Flip Day and my reputation among the urchins
[all burst out laughing]
- has really just spread to all corners of the Concentric States, and I am delighted to be notorious, and want very badly to make out with a version of me that is like gold instead of silver and long-haired instead of mohawked
Michael: Ehhh! [stuttering, flabbergasted] I’m not sure we should respond to anything she just said
Amanda: I’m just telling the truth, y’all
Michael: I am actually kind of worried because I have been either hearing - as I did in the episode- or Johnny has been hearing as he did in this episode- or talking to the Shadow-y-er side of the Light, and I’m a little worried that that’s going to bite Johnny in the ass talking to Alice Sunbeam. Listen, he’s all about the Light but does there need to be a balance or does it just need to be one or the other? Probably a balance is what I’m feeling like these days, but Alice Sunbeam probably is not there. But good news is I’m actually the messiah to these people because I have the Undying Light with me, so not just the people here but the audience members, I have the piece of the Undying Light, I’m the messiah, I’m going to win, this is the - I’m winning!
Eric: Yeah, we’ll see how that goes. Okay, Brandon, how do you feel about seeing P0R0?
Brandon: Hey...hey, Fish? Does Johnny think she’s cute?
Michael: I think, uh, Johnny is… the interest has everything to do with the Undying Light and the fact that he’s found someone else who believes in it
Brandon: So he thinks she’s cute, got it.
Eric: I love that you guys are like getting romantically involved with people on the fucking Bachelorette
Michael: I have… to me this is why this feels more ‘Big Brother’
Amanda: Yeah, it feels kind of ‘Project Runway’ to me, frankly. Having a makeover montage and Johnny having like a full mood fabric inventory worth of florals in his backpack. I love it so much
Michael: My backpack is the best thing in the world. Infinite apples, infinite fabrics, just the most useless items
Amanda: I love it. I love it so much. Inara is so like hoping to appeal to Ms.Tharthorn by like appearing the way that she thinks Ms. Tharthorn would like her to appear. Like to me it’s just so sweet and like early teenager, you know, like how do I tailor my appearance to best capture the attention of my beloved
Michael: In another universe where Tracey was awake, what would be Tracey’s whole like interaction and dealings and feelings about P-O-R-0.
Brandon: So here’s the thing, right - if anyone has ever read or played or like looked up warforged lore, warforged- they were stopped being created at a certain point, so I think it is a shock and also in my meditative shutdown mode, I am fully aware, I just am shut down.
Brandon: So I think he knows-
Michael: Oh, now I just imagined Tracey judging everything we were trying on but not being able to say anything
Brandon: Oh of course!
Amanda: Oh yeah, yeah, yeah. Being like “girl that hemline is totally wrong for you”
Eric: Or all the stuff that you guys did to Tracey when he was passed out!
Michael: We weren’t… I mean yeah
Brandon: Yup. He knows -
Amanda: We used him as a human roadblock
Brandon: - all of it.
Eric: Oh my god
Michael: Well it didn’t work. He almost fell on me
Brandon: I mean he’s probably not mad about it. But what’s interesting is I don’t know how Tracey’s going to react. Initially, like as a player, i thought for a brief second that we were looking at - it’s called the Lord of Blades actually which is sort of this warforged religious figure, sort of like almost like a Sith in warforged lore
Amanda: Oh wow
Brandon: But, clearly not [laughing]. So I don’t know. I think we’re going to have to play it out. I think he’s - Tracey’s never seen another warforged in his entire life. I don’t think he’s seen any other being that sort of lived the same experience that he has, so I don’t know if he’s going to be upset by this, or confused by this, or delighted by this. I don’t know
Michael: I am interested by the fact that there is such a major difference in the affectations or the verbal tics that P-O-R-0 speaks and Tracey-
Brandon: Oh you mean how Eric says “beep boop” to piss me off?
Michael: Well, so it’s really funny because I feel like the way each of these doppelgängers are talking are just in very stark contrast and to Eric attempting to joke and make fun of us, because Brandon hates the “beep boops” that we make jokes at thim, Inara talks decidedly not like a Valley Girl, and I have touched on Southern, but we’ve moved away from that, so I figured that’s probably where these things came from- to kind of poke at us a bit
Amanda: I feel like if you met us one time and then had to recreate our verbage to somebody else-
Michael: Oh yeah!
Amanda: - this would be it
Michael: That would be it! Yeah, that’s better
Amanda: So this is like, this is the person who comes across us once on the road and then like tales are told of us forever more- street urchin style, Charles Dickens-esque. This is how it appears
Brandon: Are we in a hologram?
Michael: So, the question is - and pure speculation - since we know that this Speaker has very, very, very masterful control over mud and creatures are these just - all of these things just elaborate, very elaborate mud creations made on purpose?
Amanda: Only one way to find out. Make out with them
Brandon: ... lick them
Michael: Lick them?!
Michael: Tracey goes for licking
Brandon: Well, same thing basically, you know?
Amanda: I have a very special surprise for you listeners, which is that we are joined by PJ Scott-Blankenship, one of our friends of the show, and the voice of Greg!
PJ: Hi everybody, it’s so nice to formally actually be in the same room with everybody. Well here, not on your end, because I don’t know where you are. Hopefully somewhere nice
Eric: PJ’s outside your room being like, “Hey do you like the podcast? How do you like it?
PJ: This is making me out to be a real creep
Amanda: PJ: is not a creep. He’s very cuddly.
PJ: Aw, thank you!
Eric: PJ, I wanna ask you about the first time that I asked you to read a letter. I only knew you through Amanda at that point and I just like sent this along to you. So how do you feel that you just like got this really emotionally charged thing, like in your Facebook inbox?
PJ: Well, I kind of want to preface that with saying that like even though you asked me to read that, I asked to be on the show
Eric: Oh, that’s right
Eric: I was gonna be really charitable because I forgot about that
PJ: No, I listened to the first couple episodes and my impression was that the wedding was going to be like their tutorial and then the group would go off and travel and do their own thing, and maybe occasionally we would see Greg and Alonzo again and not that they would play such a central role. So when I asked Amanda, it was before everything like with the Red Throat Gang had gotten really bad, and before Greg had really like shunned that other side of himself
PJ: I just thought like, “Hey if they come back and if they want a cameo, I would love to do that because I really liked Greg as a character.” And then by the time- like you guys said yes to me being on, and by the time it got to the point where I could, so much had happened that he wasn’t what I thought he was, but I loved him more if that makes sense.
Amanda: What was your first impression of Greg?
PJ: My first impression of him and the reason why I initially really wanted to play him was because he kind of embodied everything that I would have made in a D&D character at first. Like I would have made like a gay Disney prince, 100%.
[Eric bursts out laughing]
PJ: That’s exactly what I would have done, and I kind of like that he- immediately he starts hitting the fairytale cliches where he gets poisoned, it’s by a frog, his true love stops time and everything, like I loved that [Amanda giggling] and then what made me love him even more was that when he got angry, he took on this kind of like - kind of like a villainous thing but he doesn't realize that because he thinks that he’s very justified in wanting a happy ending and he’s not getting it and it’s pissing him off. And i loved that. I loved the character that plays with every one of my favorite kind of archetypes even if traditionally in stories they are like diametrically opposed to each other. I just loved him
Michael: How’s the leg?
Brandon: Sorry about that one
Eric: Oh my god
PJ: It’s been like three months. It’s fine. We don’t have to talk about it anymore
Eric: That’s exactly what Greg would say. I love it
Brandon: He did say that in 21
PJ: He did
Eric: Please, I don’t- I don’t want to talk about it
PJ: Okay, well I don’t want to talk about it. But I kind of imagine now that even though he’s kind of healed up, in my mind- which you can totally like tell me I’m wrong, but in my mind he probably has like a very fancy kind of like boot-like apparatus on that leg like wrapped around kind of like wire thin, with like silver, and it’s all barbed together and it looks kind of badass, but kind of feminine, but kind of masculine, but also keeps his shit together.
Eric: I also like that Greg like wears a boot for way longer than he has to
PJ: “I still feel like my toe doesn’t flex like it should, so I’m going to keep wearing this boot…”
Michael: Oh my gosh
Amanda: I feel like every time we’re in the same room, our characters, Greg will just kind of cross his leg with the broken one up top
PJ: Prominently point like his, yeah-
Amanda: And like look at Inara and Johnny and Tracey and be like well
PJ: I feel like he dislikes all of you, but he really hates Tracey
Brandon: And Tracey gets a little bit of satisfaction from that I think [laughing]
Eric: I can tell. Yeah. It’s very apparent
Brandon: I don’t think Tracey likes Greg very much at all either
Eric: Everything you’re saying about Greg I think really comes through for me in my headcanon for him
Eric: He was very much-
PJ: Which is canon because it’s your character
Eric: I know it’s like the thing, it’s just canon
PJ: It’s just canon
Eric: Everything that I wanted Greg to be in the original wedding was literally him being a Disney prince
Eric: And now he’s just come up with depth, and I think that when you read these letters, you really capture a lot of them
Amanda: Do you guys talk about Greg as a character, PJ and Eric?
PJ: I would love to more than I do but I feel like - because for one thing, I’m behind because I listen to the shows in real time with everybody else
PJ: And I’m not here. But also like he’s not - even though he’s a character, he’s not a player, so like all the things that I want to know about him - those are more of a narrative thing as opposed to like finding out what people are doing like as a collaborative storytelling thing. So I don’t have ownership over him the way that you guys do your characters. And like I have so many questions, and so many things that I want to know, and so many things that I’m looking forward to, but I don’t want to like hover over Eric.
Eric: Dealing with NPCs are a little complicated depending on where everyone is, so Zach Valenti from the first 2 episodes, Julia who played Kohl at the end of the first arc, and now Heddy, who’s a part of the Bachelorette Party arc - they’re all local so we could work with them, we could tell them what we needed. Zach kind of just popped in, and he’s just like a consummate audio professional, but Julia actually came into the studio, so she was like being a PC, and I’m using Heddy for a very specific way, so I’m like giving her what she needs. The other thing with Mischa is - again kind of like the way I’m using Heddy - is that Mischa comes when Johnny needs them, so it’s like- it is dependent on when Fish does things as a player. It’s like Mischa and Fish share like a PC role together. So now for Greg it’s like I need Greg to do shit even when PJ is not here, and I also don’t want to spoil PJ because he’s really good at like listening to the story and Facebook messaging me about it. So I kind of like this dichotomy of there being like a player Greg, which is kind of like how I have him, and then this produced Greg. And I think that they’re a little bit different
PJ: I think the irony though is that produced Greg is more sincere
Eric: Yeah [laughing]
Amanda: Yeah, but I mean I love that personally, because we don’t know through whose perspective the story is being told. As of the middle of Bachelorette Party, like Alonzo is not here. So it’s not necessarily Alonzo’s story, even though in most ways it is. Like Alonzo is the character around which the rest of ours have convened, which is sort of atypical for, I think, a D&D campaign, for the player characters not to be like the person unifying everyone else and driving the thing forward. And so from that kind of narrative perspective, having a version of Greg that interacts with Alonzo, if you want to call him our protagonist, in front of us player characters, and then another version of Greg that speaks directly to Alonzo in a, you know, sincere, one-on-one, private and intimate way - I think it’s really cool. In the same way that we have a voice talking to Johnny and using, you know, Mischa’s voice just adds another kind of like layer of - it’s almost like we’re hearing the Undying Light through Johnny, and in this way like PJ’s voice is Greg through Alonzo.
Brandon: Now that I think about it - I hadn’t thought about it before - we don’t really know who’s telling the story, do we?
Eric: Oh, no well I mean, as we’ve talked about before, and just this structure that I’ve imposed, from our recaps and from the ‘Meet the World’ episode, I mean this is like a story that just exists. We don’t really have a perspective at this point.
Brandon: That’s interesting.
Michael: I think it’s the Speaker.
Brandon: Yeah well what if it… yeah
Michael: They’re just like always like present just like flappin’ around just like “Hey. I’m watchin’ you.”
Brandon: I mean like we have the Centering story which happened like a millennium ago. What if this story is - and this is just my total conjecture. This is not a theory at all, but like what if this is being told a millenia in the future...
Brandon: … by the Speaker
Michael: That is technically the start of this, isn’t it? Is that Centering story, right?
Amanda: ‘Meet the World’
Michael: The ‘Meet the World’ that’s what you’re referencing?
Eric: Yeah. It’s like yeah, we have these two stories that are working with each other. One is like this story that you guys don’t really know about - just the story of the Centering that is just like common knowledge, and then there’s this one that, that - the campaign
Michael: This is where we finally admit all this has been scripted
Michael: Including all our answers
Michael: It’s all been scripted, sorry
Brandon: I do think it’s - this is just, I love this idea. Sorry, I’ll stop talking soon, but this idea that whomever is telling this story also has intimate knowledge of all three of our characters, but all three of our characters don’t know the intimate knowledge about each other
Brandon: So who is that one person?
Brandon: Is it Alonzo telling the story in 1,000 years?
Amanda: Right, is it like Greg and Alonzo’s great-times-twenty grandchild?
Amanda: You know, who knows? Is it an official historian talking about the story that starts with a wedding and ends in… uhh? You know, something significant enough that this story has been like committed to memory, because for those who may not have listened to our recap episode, or kind of story summary, which you can find at jointhepartypod.com/recap, Eric wrote it in the style of someone telling a bedtime story, a narrative
Amanda: You know, in the same way that the ‘Meet the World’ episode way back in June of 2017 was structured, so I live for metatextual shit. Like that is what I was the most into in college studying literature and the kinds of stories that I love reading. That’s why I chose ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ books, you know, because the second person narrative, the ability for someone to interact, personally that's the kind of story that I love the most. And it is just like a kind of cool thing that I can think about when I’m not in the middle of figuring out how to like play a scene, you know?
Brandon: Yeah, “Does my Sneak Attack apply?” [laughing]
Amanda: Yeah, zoom out, oh god, Sneak Attack. Lord.
Amanda: When we pass a million downloads, I’ll get a tattoo that says…
Brandon: Can you get the flowchart? Your sneak attack flowchart?
Eric: God no!
Michael: Oh no that’s like - that’s your entire back!
Eric: That’s terrible
Amanda: Yeah, I know that would be my entire back
Eric: Amanda gets a [chuckling] a torso tattoo of the Sneak Attack… [laughing too hard to continue]
Michael: Oh no
Amanda: I was thinking- it looked - but it’s mirrored right so I have to be able to look down and see the text myself
Brandon: Just get it on your eyelids
Brandon: The inside of your eyelids
Amanda: The inside of my lips - so I can
Brandon: Yeah, like a Wakandan situation
Eric: It’s like, “I’m a rogue… blehhh”
Amanda: Well, we also got some listener questions for PJ
PJ: Oh, cool
Amanda: This is from the perspective of Greg, so we can see this as PJ’s headcanon about Greg, not necessarily Greg canonically
Eric: I love it. I love it
Amanda: So, PJ, what are Greg’s favorite activities to do with Alonzo?
PJ: [thinking] With Alonzo… someone mentioned like - I don’t know if they meant for it to be like an AU like an alternate universe thing, or just a thick idea, but there was this idea that they both do open mic
PJ: That I thought was very charming
Amanda: Is it in disguise? Or is it as themselves like in a different city?
PJ: That’s a good question
Amanda: I don’t know
PJ: I don’t feel like they travel a lot now, so maybe whenever they get the chance they sneak out
Amanda: Aww, that’d be cute
PJ: That sounded very sweet
Brandon: What is Greg’s performance? Like does he do comedy, is he singing, is he doing…
PJ: Greg’s a singer
Brandon: Singer, love it
Brandon: I guess he’s a bard, that does make sense. Now how does the arrow fit into his act?
PJ: It’s like a tuning fork
Brandon: I love it
PJ: It like goes up and down and then -
Amanda: If he’s on pitch or not
Amanda: What is Greg’s go-to karaoke song?
Brandon: What is PJ’s go-to karaoke song?
Amanda: We are all doing karaoke tonight, so I am very excited about it
PJ: I was thinking about what songs exist in the world
Amanda: Yeah, yeah
PJ: For him to be able to… whatever version of Amy Winehouse there is
Brandon: Yessss! Good choice
PJ: Yeah, uh ‘Back to Black’ I think would be Greg’s
Brandon: Love it
Amanda: Love it
PJ: PJ’s is ‘Survivor’ by Destiny’s Child
[all talking at once]
Brandon: That is also an excellent pick
Amanda: Ugh, so good
Eric: That is very good
Amanda: God, I can’t wait
Amanda: Our other question was: what is Greg’s favorite style of fighting?
PJ: I think that he-
Amanda: There’s lots of ways to approach this
Amanda: Mine is where does Greg feel most in control? Like what scenario where he has to like influence an outcome, like what scenario does he feel most in control over?
PJ: I think that Greg knows that he’s the most in control when he’s not in control. And what I mean by that is that a lot of what he does is very artificed when it comes to dealing with people, but then you see what happens when he loses his temper- he’s incredibly powerful. So I think that for him, the key to a successful fight is losing his temper in a controlled way
PJ: Because then it’s just like rack ‘em up
Amanda: Very Bruce Banner
Eric: Yeah, that’s similar to what happened at the beginning of Political Party is like you have to send out goons to like try to deal with them and then once that doesn’t happen he can like go in and mop up
PJ: I play him as a mix between Disney Princesses - mostly like Cinderella and Ariel, Little Mermaid, very throaty, but when he loses his temper - and I’m hoping that we’ll get to that at some point - he becomes much more nasal and head-voice I think. It’s like Maleficent and then Maleficent turns into the dragon
Brandon: Yeah, I love that, that’s great
Eric: That’s true, that’s very real
PJ: That’s how I feel
Brandon: It’s also funny because that’s what Tracey does with his rage switch is lose his temper in a controlled way
PJ: Uh, Greg would never admit this but I think secretly Tracey and Greg are very much alike
Brandon: [whispering] Interesting
Amanda: That’s probably why they dislike each other a lot, you know?
Amanda: They can see a lot of each other
PJ: He would never show the parts of himself that are very much like Tracey to Tracey
Brandon: And same way for Tracey I think, yeah
Eric: I have a question from the Facebook. This is from Matthew Julien. Thank you, Matthew. He starts by saying a lot of nice things about us.
Eric: Thank you for saying nice things about us. “My question is for Amanda/Inara. Is her tendency to speak quickly and in triplicate - example: cool, cool, cool - before going off on a short and hilarious recap of what just happened…
[all burst out laughing]
Eric: A character -
Eric: A character choice, or is that Amanda showing through? I haven’t noticed you doing this on Spirits, which I love too by the way, so I have a feeling it’s an Inara-ism.”
Amanda: PJ’s known me the longest
PJ: I don’t wanna say
Amanda: Please. Please say
Brandon: No, I wanna hear from PJ, yeah
PJ: She does to the triplicate thing when she gets very, very excited
PJ: Or if it’s a rant but it’s like an excited rant
PJ: And then the tangent of recapping, that happens - it’s when she’s not thinking about it
PJ: Which makes sense when you’re improving. Then it’s like, “Cool, cool, cool” you know
Amanda: Yeah. I feel like, “Yeah, yeah, yeah so… blah blah blah,” you know
Eric: Yeah that’s exactly Inara. I think Inara is just excited Amanda at all times
PJ: Inara is uninhibited Amanda
Eric: Mmm, that’s real
Amanda: That’s how I try to play her, so that makes sense. I will try not to think about it or else I’ll stop doing it
Brandon: So from my perspective I’ve edited all of you many, many hours-
Brandon: I’ve heard your voices more than any human should hear any other human’s voices
Amanda: Oh boy, oh boy
Brandon: So I know all of y’all’s ticks, and I know when to edit and when not to edit each of y’all, so from my perspective, I think there is a little bit more of that idea of Inara in Amanda, but it doesn’t make it on tape because I tightly edit Amanda speaking so it flows better and then I literally just don’t edit when Inara speaks
Brandon: I just let it go and it’s beautiful. And I originally was editing Inara too down to be a little more flowy, but eventually I was like, “You know what, this is her character. Just like let it flow. This is beautiful” You could repeat things a million times, you could say the same word seven times, “uh”, “um”s stay in. I’m keeping it in! I edit Johnny more than Fish so Johnny’s pretty - in my head Johnny’s pretty confident. He doesn’t really-
Brandon: -mess his words up. For different NPCs, I edit them differently. Yeah, it’s interesting
PJ: How much did you edit me?
Brandon: Uh, not much. It’s different- when you have an actor who’s performing it’s different. Because you guys intentionally take words, so I try to take chunks at a time and I look for performance more than I look for like flaw in performances, so-
Amanda: How do you edit yourself versus Tracey?
Brandon: Well so this is the hard thing, because you’re always super self conscious about yourself
Brandon: So the thing that I’m most aware of for myself is like - was that funny? Probably not. I’m gonna cut it
Brandon: And that happens a lot [laughing] so I’m probably harsher on myself laugh-wise than I should be, and like I’ve had this discussion with you, Eric, where like when you’re editing yourself you take out a lot of the funny and like charming things that you say and I’m like, “No, no, no we’re putting that back in”
Eric: That’s what our bloopers are for!
Brandon: Right, but yeah. I think I edit Tracey and Brandon the same way because I’m just self-conscious about it, yeah
Michael: Just came to me that you probably could if you wanted to re-record lines you wanted to change
Brandon: I could, but I’m lazy, so
Michael: Very fair, very fair
Eric: Does Johnny have any verbal tics? Or just like being Johnny?
Michael: Many. I mean I think Brandon’s right in that he edits Johnny more so he sounds a little more confident, because Johnny’s a very confident fellow and Fish is - at least verbally - less confident sounding, so it makes more sense I think
Amanda: I think that you’re… you are like analyzing the game on so many levels because - especially early on, as a person who DMs more than plays, there must be so many levels of like metatextual seeing what’s going on, is this what he’s doing, is this not what he’s doing, you know, what is like the best way to plough through this scenario versus like the narrative. So I think whenever you, you know, hesitate before speaking, or take a minute to get to wherever you’re going, to me it’s like well I mean of course you would, because you are not only saying like, “What would my character do in this scenario?” but, “What can I as one of four players in this game... like what is the most appropriate thing?” Not the best thing, not the worst thing, not the fastest thing, not the slowest thing, but like the most appropriate one out of all those scenarios right now
Michael: My best sessions are the ones that I like let go and don’t try to anticipate the five different things Eric could do in this one specific situation, but I also love doing that, because then I can afterwards be like, “Oh my god! I assumed you were going to do this, this or this”
Michael: “but you did that and it was crazy!”
Amanda: You’ve also done a lot of like teeing Inara up and Amanda up for like not messing up, you know? And especially earlier on when I was even less confident than I am now, I don’t know just like giving me options or talking through things with me. So I definitely would not be as effective or interesting on mic without both of the player characters here, but I think especially the sort of like, you know, mentor-mentee relationship that Johnny and Inara have that’s been - I don’t know I’m just saying nice things now, but that’s been really nice for me.
Eric: You notice that Johnny is the one who does the action and says, “Johnny’s gonna walk over and talk to this person,” and that’s because Fish knows how to play Dungeons & Dragons
Eric: I wanna talk to PJ about this because we literally just talked about this-
Eric: -as we were preparing to record anotherrrrrr… thing which might come up at some point. There’s a very big difference between how I act as Greg off the cuff and how I write and how you express Greg in the written way. And I think you summed it up really well. It’s like- Greg is very sort of like harsh and like a little bit harder in person, but his written stuff he writes like he’s a Civil War wife.
Amanda: Oh no
Eric: Yeah like intentionally
Amanda: Oh no! [laughing]
Eric: Which is really funny
PJ: I think he’s also a bit prone to the drama of it all
Eric: Oh yeah
PJ: So that’s how I really wanted to take it because, like I said, when I asked, the character of Greg as was presented was totally different than what ended up happening in the next couple of episodes. I never would have thought that he was going to like kind of become an antagonist when he first popped onto the scene. But then after that happened and after you guys were like, “Okay we’re going to include you,” and like he was just an asshole!
PJ: He was just a little shit! I don’t - what am I gonna do? So I intentionally I did kind of read the letter to try to humanize him a bit more
PJ: And I think that - what we were talking about earlier was that we’ve seen a very interesting thing happen with people who love Greg and Alonzo lately, and where they've really like come to bat for the couple, even though it’s really been a while since they’ve been able to do anything together. And you know, as of now, Greg hasn’t really redeemed himself all that much
PJ: Like right now everyone is like, “Okay, fine.” But there’s not really like been like this big change of heart, there’s not been this big change in dynamic, but people really love - it’s just a recent thing! People really, really love Greg and Alonzo now, and I think that kind of also goes back to representation being very important, and this is the kind of character that I would have wanted to see when I was a kid and it’s - he's the exact kind of character that I wanted to play because he thinks that he is very entitled to his happily-ever-after life
PJ: Whether or not he’s gone through enough in his life for him to literally say, “I deserve this,” - that’s up for debate, but the fact that he can’t get it [whispering] just makes him so mad
Eric: Oh yeah
PJ: And in his heart of hearts he just wants to be a good husband
PJ: That’s it. Like the theatrics, and the quests, and the magic and the world - they’re all very intriguing. They’re very charming. He could see from another person’s perspective how that could look to be like a very romantic life, but as he says when he snaps on everybody, it’s my life. I can’t walk away. Like I have to live this
PJ: And you guys get to be the heroes
Eric: I love that. I love that - I really wish you were around when I first had that-
PJ: I’m always around
Eric: Yeah [laughing]
Eric: I really wish that we had gotten you on mic when he snapped, because like I feel like I wrote that out just as much as I write out the letters that you read
Eric: And I feel like that speech, your letter, and then this one that-
PJ: They’re the same voice
Eric: - that we’re going to record eventually, that’s very much triangulated, like this is how Alonzo sees Greg. And I’m really excited for everyone to hear all that and then we’ll - hopefully we’ll flesh him out a little bit more and get you more on mic
PJ: [whispering] That’d be great
Brandon: I think it’s also such like a human… a human feeling to have exactly what you just described, like I think people are connecting with Greg and Alonzo in addition to the representation part because that feeling of - you were getting into a thing that you had - you had an image in your head of what it was, like I was in a relationship for a long time and I had this idea of what our future was gonna be and then suddenly something comes in and changes that. And that’s something we can all relate to, and suddenly your future is swept out from under you. Your idea - your romantic idea of what’s the next month or the next year is gonna look like is swept out from under you
Michael: I mean they didn’t even have a literal honeymoon
PJ: They didn’t even have a reception
PJ: Really, I mean … [laughing]
Brandon: Not really, yeah
Brandon: There were frogs
PJ: Yeah. I-I - he carries that with him. Like you know that he does, and he’s so ready for this to be done
Eric: For sure. I know that like I don’t know as much about like royal interactions
Eric: But I think that this is actually kind of playing out in the royal wedding that’s happening right now is like the dating part is really hard, and like people are just speculating, and like everyone's like, “Ooh is that his girlfriend,” blah blah blah
Eric: But like once people are married you’re like, “Eh you’re family I don’t care anymore.” And I think that like Greg really wanted that
Eric: And now he doesn’t get it
Brandon: It’s hard
PJ: Yeah, and I think that when you grow up in that kind of position of privilege and - I mean I think it’s with everybody where people say, “Oh, you know, you’re going to go to school, and then you’re going to graduate and meet someone, and you’re going to be in love, and it’s going to be great,” particularly for me, I come from a family where everybody had kids at 20 and they got married then and like that was the ideal. That was it. So much so that even when I came out ot my family, my grandma didn't care that I was gay she cared that I wasn’t in a relationship
PJ: So she was like, [in Southern accent], “Well why aren’t you settled down yet?”
Amanda: I love your grandma
PJ: [whispering] She’s the worst. I hope that- I don’t know the whole dynamics of Greg’s family but I hope that somewhere he has a grandma that he can’t stand who’s very controlling
Eric: Oh I’m like 99% sure. I’m putting her in now
PJ: Okay, cool
Eric: Like it’s great
Eric: Yeah. I think that’s also - and like we’ve had a little bit of a conversation about it from a larger political perspective - Fidopolis and Cronopolis - I’ve laid out like they’re the two power players
Eric: And I feel like they are the ones that are closest to like - not an aristocracy or nouveau-aristocracy or like even a monarchy or whatever the fuck’s going on in the UK right now [chuckling] But-
Amanda: Constitutional monarchy! It’s not a thing, UK, it’s not a thing
Eric: Not really a thing
Eric: Um but it’s like there is this like “royal” - with big quotes - family from these two places, and then what we’re seeing in Antipolis is like literally supposed to be like the West Wing more, and then whatever the fuck is happening in Tortipolis right now. It’s all very different, so the government systems are different and that's why there’s a lot of conflict between all the other places
Eric: And why they need a literal divine speaker to like tell them to chill
PJ: I think that it looks like it’s a very advantageous match as well between the Kikos and the Nectarias just because
PJ: But for them, for Greg and Alonzo, it’s the real deal
PJ: Everything else is just secondary, and the fact that it kind of works to everyone else’s advantage, like that kind of gives Greg like a sigh of relief because even though he doesn’t really like - I feel like he probably doesn't really care so much about the way that it’s viewed. He’s more like happy about the fact that nobody’s going to give him shit about this relationship
Eric: Oh true
Amanda: And how perfect it could be
Amanda: But instead, he hasn’t you know been with Alonzo in months
PJ: But then off the bat, his sister-
Michael: But instead there’s a lot of resentment, like because this happened, and yes he’s with the person he loves
Michael: But immediately, now the responsibilities kick in, and I think that I’m not sure if Greg thought about it, at least the way I see it he was thinking all the idealized - the honeymoon, the month after-
Amanda: The happily ever after
Michael: But- and that it just went over his head that these are the two like powerful families of two of the cities like you c- it’s not going to be easy no matter what, and I think this is - the journey he’s on is figuring out- and I mean I think in this case it’s more than- it’s unfair what’s happening
Michael: Like I think it’s beyond the not easy that it should be, but he has to learn how to make that balance and work
PJ: I think he also doesn’t care about politics
PJ: No, and he doesn’t care about politics, but I also think that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t care about the people
PJ: I think that he probably doesn’t know as much about what’s going on outside of the castle I think as- as anyone would. But I do think that he has a little bit more life experience than Alonzo, and that he’s a bit more aware of people’s true inner nature
PJ: And he would love to make the world better, but not in the way that he’s seen it happening
Eric: Yeah, that makes sense. Especially like how oblivious he is about Gregina
PJ: Yeah, absolutely
Eric: Like Gregina - and they like named them after each other, which is wild - is like he doesn't understand the political ramifications of like having a disgruntled sibling, and I think that’s really what it boils down to is like Gregina knows, “Oh I have political power. I can bring some shit down and make people listen to me.” and Greg’s like “Why did you ruin my wedding?”
Brandon: It’s also crazy that these- these adults are expecting these children-
Eric: Oh yeah
Brandon: - to be able to deal with these political ramifications and it’s just- you’re a child, you can’t. Just you can’t
Michael: Yeah. Going back I think to the letters and then to the relationship between Greg and Alonzo, the listener gets to hear all these changes and like at least get a better idea of who Greg is and who Greg and Alonzo are, but as characters, Tracey, Inara, and Johnny really have one main conception of Greg and it’s fairly negative
Michael: And there’s not - it’s not- nothing has happened to change that, not just from like, “Okay this is someone we saved and then tried to attack us, and then tried to sabotage us on the ship, and then is giving us crap even though we’re the ones who have been tasked with protecting your husband…” and we talk a lot on this show about how we forget Alonzo [all chuckling] but I think the fact that we forget Alonzo is a lot better than I think the fact that our characters really don’t like Greg
Michael: Or at least we’re- you know we as I think as people- Brandon and Amanda and I like Greg and want to like him, but it’s just- there’s no twisting I can do of how Johnny has interacted with Greg that he can like him, at least without any kind of major changes
PJ: I think that’s good though
Amanda: Like the best case scenario so far that we can say for our characters’ relationship to Greg is that like he didn’t actively attack us when we left Fidapolis for Tortipolis
Michael: That was huge, yeah
Amanda: You know and that’s like the most positive interaction that they’ve had so far, you know?
PJ: Nobody got chopped
Amanda: No one got chopped
PJ: Everyone’s limbs are-
Brandon: We’ve played Chopped twice, haven’t we Eric?
Eric: I hate it!
Amanda: Uh, ooh man fantasy Tim Allen is really harsh with his - with his penalties isn’t he? Anyway, um-
Brandon: Tim Allen?
Eric: Tim Allen?
Amanda: Fuck, what’s his name?
Michael: Bum bum bum buuuuummm
Brandon: No one tell her. No one tell her
Eric: No, she watches ‘Chopped’ all the time! It’s Ted Allen!
Amanda: Ted Allen, thank you
PJ: Tim Allen is an asshole
Brandon: Can you imagine Tim Allen hosting ‘Chopped’?!
Eric: It’s true
Eric: Um you guys can just make ehhhhhh
Eric: Uh just make me, uh, make me a sandwich because that’s what men in America deserve
Eric: Ooooooooh! [singing] a bum-bum-bum-bum-bum-bum
PJ: To infinity and -
Brandon: Alice Guarnaschelli is behind a fence the entire time
Eric: Just poking over
Amanda: Anyway, I love Greg and Alonzo. I love their relationship. I identify with both of them in different ways, like I cry every time I hear the letter because I really identify with that- that kind of sentiment of like you love this person and all you want is to like hold them to you, and spend time with them, and never let them go, but you know that to be happy and fulfilled people you need to spend time apart, or do things that will hurt each other through no fault of your own. And so I love them a lot, and I love everyone's fan art and please keep making more fan art. But that being said, we are firmly in Alonzo’s corner as our characters. And you know as much as Inara moans and groans about the annoying little brother or big brother that Alonzo is- I think he’s, you know, the same age-
PJ: Big little brother, little big brother
Amanda: [laughing] Yeah for sure. Little big brother I think. We haven’t had that opportunity to develop a relationship with Greg, and we haven’t seen a human side of Greg that the listeners have. So people ask us sometimes like why we rag on Greg so much and that’s - that’s the answer
Eric: I’m wondering how long Alonzo can be a plot hook for you three. And I think we’re gonna see what happens. We’ve done like, “Hey, this is Alonzo, this big doofus.” We did, “Hey do you wanna work for Alonzo,” “Hey go help Alonzo while he does this thing,” “Oh no, Alonzo’s missing.” I feel like that’s like the end of the road. I wonder how long they’ll do like what Alonzo tells them to do
Amanda: Our three characters have loyalties to each other, we have loyalties to the cause, we have loyalties to the Concentric States to varying degrees, so Inara doesn’t need to be paid to do the thing that we’re doing, and like at a certain point maybe Alonzo will be at odds with what we think is the right mission. Maybe, you know, the Representative will tell us something that we think is wrong, like we do almost all the time. You know, so like there’s gonna come a time where- we’re people with thoughts and opinions and like the ability to affect change in the world, and I don’t think that we have like a primary allegiance to anything but our own senses of justice
Michael: But aren’t you as an assassin literally being paid to do this thing? Like that’s - that’s what you- you should be wanting
Michael: Right? Okay
Eric: Inara’s a very bad assassin
Amanda: Inara’s a very bad assassin
Brandon: I think it’s going to be fun to see that- when that comes up
Brandon: What you just talked about
Amanda: No I’m - and honestly, like I don’t know. I think I will be reacting to challenges that Inara faces in the moment because I don’t have a ton - I feel like you two could talk all day long about what your characters would do in different situations and I chose to play an adolescent for a reason and that’s because like we are discovering this shit as we go- as me as a newbie player and as Inara as a newbie person in the world, so we’ll see
Amanda: Alrighty, that will do it for our After Party. We would love to hear what questions you have for the next time. You can find us at jointhepartypod.com/contact, or email us directly firstname.lastname@example.org. You can hit us up on any social media platform. We are on all of them all day long. We are @JoinThePartyPod on Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, all the places you could possible want to talk to us, and we hang out all day long- not gonna lie, it really is all day- in our Discord for our Patrons. So that’s at Patreon.com/JoinThePartyPod and for as little as two bucks per episode. It goes really to a great place and you’re going to be able to join in that Discord, so we are so grateful for your support, those of you who are supporting us already, and if you’re able to join, we’d really love that.
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I think that’s gonna do it for us! Thank you again for listening and we will talk to you soon.