When we left off, Tom Hanks had just gone crazy in the local caves. Tonight, as he sleeps, he is visited by a dream.In the dream, Tom is talking to an authoritative God figure. God looks a little like “Not Me” of Family Circus as seen through James Bond’s gun barrel.
One could make the argument that we should take rules information from the dream with a grain of salt. Tom Hanks is known to have gone crazy for this role and it is my understanding that they filmed this scene by filming inside his crazy brain. Still, we don’t have so much rules information that we can afford to throw any away. Let’s see what we can get.
AUTHORITATIVE FIGURE: Pardieux. Pardieux!
HANKS: Who are you?
AUTHORITATIVE FIGURE: I am the Great Hall. Once you gloried in killing, now you are of a higher level. To attain the highest level you must be holy in all your life. You must be pious. Humble. …Sssselibate.
Attaining the highest level:
There is a level cap in Mazes and Monsters
HANKS: But I walk with Glacia the fighter!
HALL: The Holy Man must walk alone.
To attain the highest level, the Holy man not glory in killing. He must be pious, humble, and ssssselibate.
HANKS: No wait, please, Great Hall! I need you!
HALL: When you are worthy, you will come to the Two Towers and be one with the Great Hall.
Tom Hanks does exactly what feel-good movies and guidance counselors have been telling us to do for decades: he believes in his dream. He makes life alterations that will change his career forever. The first thing he does is become, as The Great Hall hissed to him, celibate. This celibacy will be a life-long commitment for Hanks: long after Mazes and Monsters is done filming, Tom Hanks will continue to take decidedly non-sexy roles.
The first actress to be surprised and horrified by Hanks’ newly-embraced asexuality is Wendy Crewson, who plays Kate. Kate comes into Hank’s room with a sex-kittenish “Studying hard, I see? Any way I could, uhh… convince you to take a little break?” Tom responds with the ultimate enigmatic break-up line, “I love you, and I will always love you, but I just can’t touch you right now.”
Wow, Mazes and Monsters prevents casual sex and promotes celibacy! Celibacy is a form of birth control, and birth control is sinful. Another teen decoyed into evil by roleplaying games.
No wonder moms were so freaked out by everything in the 80s: your stupid kid is liable to be influenced by anything. Anti-RPG advocate group MAMAM (Moms Are Mad About Mazes and Monsters) may have been among the angriest group of angry moms, presumably leading the probable book-burnings that presumably cause my absolute failure to find any Mazes and Monsters manuals on eBay, but there were other 80s moms who were upset about stuff. Here’s a few of the other dangers that can beset unwary 80s teens.Heavy Metal: This was another big problem in the 80s, almost as dangerous as role-playing games. They talked about Satan a lot in heavy metal. Sometimes they hid backwards messages about Satan in songs, which was weird because the frontwards messages were also about Satan. Playing an evil message backwards seems kind of like a double negative, but how much sophistication can you really expect from people who rhyme “generals gathered in their masses” with “just like witches at black masses”. Cross Stitch: Dude, check out the evil message on this cross-stitch! Imagine if this cross-stitch, or a manual instructing teens how to cross-stitch, fell into the hands of teens. Their ability to separate fantasy from reality, sapped by all the comic books and heavy metal, would finally crumble.
Philosophy: Another huge influence on teens is the depressing, angst-ridden work of the existentialist philosophers. How many lives were lost because of overzealous English teachers who taught the work of Jean-Paul Sartre? What were they even doing teaching Sartre? He was French.
OK, listen, guys. I think I wandered a little bit far afield in this Mazes and Monsters rules session. Still, I think we covered some important ground. Next post we’ll get into some hardcore rules action. Until then, check out this sweet map Tom Hanks… uhh… painted?