Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Musings on Masks: Episode 03

EPISODE SUMMARY (Tracing Survivors): Wherein James Paterson speaks to the pathologist Maurice Patterson before heading off to Colney Hatch Mental Institution to seek permission to speak with the other survivor of the building collapse and gallery fire.

EASTER EGGS:  Colney Hatch really did suffer a fire in the early twentieth century that killed 52 individuals in the Jewish ward. To be perfectly honest, the fact that 52 people were slain in the art gallery was either a coincidence or a subconscious memory of the article on the Colney Hatch fire.  Luckily I like my players' idea so I'll be going with it. In other news, the National Fire Service doesn't exist in this era. It won't be formed until midway through the Second World War. Whoopsy!

MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES: Normally I wouldn't have done yet 'another asylum tale' but I really needed to build a rapport between James and Jack and the only way to do that was through repeat contact. You'll see why that connection is incredibly important in a later episode.

While the main medication they could give them at the time was a sedative with confinement as a major treatment due to lack of resources, I also tried to look at the staff of Colney Hatch as generally trying to be helpful.  They just lacked any good treatment options and were willing to accept certain abuses as inevitable due to the strain on the orderlies. Considering how every aspect of the patients' lives were in the hands of the staff, this isn't a reasonable view for him to take.

James keeps his mouth shut during this portion of the conversation so he could get the job. Otherwise I think he would have told him off for it.

OTHER THOUGHTS: I think that the nice Jewish neighbour which Charlie briefly mentions will totally need to make an appearance after they leave and return to London. She might be able to forewarn them if the Masks cultists start snooping about. I just need a name for her. I already picture her as the right combination of sweet, nosy and well-meaning that she'll notice if anyone tries to poke around their home or stalks them.

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