That Wacky Redhead

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Brainbin, Nov 18, 2011.

Loading...
  1. Shevek23 Spherical Cow-poke

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Location:
    Reno, Nevada USA
    You see, stevep? Hinckley may have been a nut, but he's not exactly a random nut. He's a nut who is a scion of the power elite.
     
  2. Orville_third Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2009
    Location:
    Piedmont Socialist Republic
    Wow! I got thanked! Thank you!
     
  3. Brainbin Kingpin of the Cultural Cartel

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Location:
    The British Empire
    APRIL FOOLS!

    I thought I would wait until after noon had arrived everywhere on Earth before I finally posted this debriefing. For those of you who were uncertain or disbelieving that such a thing could happen, yes, e of pi has posted an April Fool’s prank that is emphatically not canon with the rest of That Wacky Redhead. That so many of you found it plausible was a testament to the careful planning that went into this undertaking. Most of which was on his part rather than my own, though this was the product of my original suggestion, several months ago (not too long after April 1st of 2012, actually). But your enthusiasm for his guest post has quite effectively guilted him into accepting my offer for him to write a genuine guest post, which relies on his actual expertise on a subject near and dear to his heart. Though, contrary to popular perception, it will not be the space program; I’ll be writing that post myself, in the coming cycle in fact, though obviously with his most helpful and gracious input, guidance, and proofreading assistance (along with the advice of my other aeronautical consultant, and his co-author on Eyes Turned Skyward, truth is life). Your reactions, though incredibly varied, have been quite the joy to sit back and passively observe; I’ve so rarely been involved in executing such a prank, so it made for a very nice change. I want to thank you all for reading, for commenting, and for being such great sports. I wouldn’t trade you guys for any other audience in the world (except, perhaps, for a paying one ;)).

    Thus concludes the 1978-79 cycle. Please stay tuned for More to Come in the very near future.
     
  4. Glen ASB & Left Hand of IAN Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2005
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    @ Brainbin - For a pop culture expert, I highly recommend you take the time to check it out. Remember that it is indeed a highly abridged version (lots of characters are missing, unfortunately), but it is an interesting contributor to the corpus.
     
  5. Falkenburg CMII & Bar Monthly Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Location:
    Lurking
    Now that Brainbin has explicitly revealed the true nature of e of pi's contribution it feels appropriate to say thank you to him for the laugh. :)

    I'd have done it previously but it seemed to me that would've been treading on the punchline, so to speak.

    Who knows, maybe somewhere, sometime the Phantom Flan Flinger may make an appearance for real ITTL. :p

    Falkenburg
     
  6. Dan1988 Vamos abrir a porta da esperança!

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    Location:
    ATL Royaume du Canada
    Great prank, you two. Thanks for fooling me. :cool:

     
  7. e of pi Layers on Top of Layers

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2008
    Location:
    Halfway to Anywhere
    To follow on the Brainbin's post, I'd like to thank everyone for their patience today--I realize some of you didn't quite get what you may have been expecting from a guest post by me. As the Brainbin said, though, I've been consulting along with truth is life on a follow-up space post, as well as second post dealing with the Star Trek RPG. I hope that and any laughs this may have produced make up for inflicting such silliness on an apparently unsuspecting board. I know that Brainbin and I had a lot of fun working this out, I'm glad at least some of you got as much fun out of it as we put in.

    Yes! We'd been talking about an April Fool's post embedded as a guest update for a while, but you and phx speculating about Hinkley brought the topic into focus--if not Taxi Driver, what does Hinkley watch? Clearly it had to be a 1976 film featuring Jodi Foster to fit the chronology, so we picked Bugsy Malone as have the most ridiculous outcome if Hinkley tried to follow the message as literally as he did Taxi Driver--well, it was that or Freaky Friday, but that had potential to get more bizarre than I thought even I could write even close to straight.

    As for the style and content, there's a mix of Stylistic Suck and Rule of Funny in here. (Caution: TvTropes will ruin your life.) Having worked as an editor on most of Brainbin's most recent updates and co-writer on "Marcia, Marcia, Marcia," I worked (with Brainbin's help) to skewer some of the most common features of his writing that we've talked about in the past--a pun title, an opening quote foreshadowing content in the post or the future content, an introduction paragraph casting back through history, and an abundance of footnotes.
    5 is legitimate oversight and will be edited, 15 was connected to information that was too much of a spoiler and had to be deleted, but I forgot to erase the footnote....or so I was thinking of claiming when I wrote it. The footnotes were all placed in the text before I wrote material to go with them, with the goal of cramming in as many as we could--15 was originally going to be a gag like "there is no footnote 15" but it came dangerously close to the same gag as 14. Oh yes, there was a heavy amount of craft in this post, I'll have you all know. ;)

    e of pi is a proud Hoosier, currently living in Ohio, and attends none of those schools. (Go Flyers!) However, you're on the root of why it went up at exactly 12:03 my time--we decided to get my post up early so that board members in Europe and the UK (as well as the US who wake up before my usual mid-morning wakeup) would catch it first thing, and thus well before noon.
     
  8. Brainbin Kingpin of the Cultural Cartel

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Location:
    The British Empire
    More To Come... Right After These Messages

    The "present date" is September 9, 1979 (a Sunday). In Pasdena, California, a suburb of Los Angeles, the 31st Emmy Awards are underway, just as they were at about the same time the year before. The United States, and much of the world, is in the throes of a major recession, of the kind that had made the economic woes from earlier in the decade seem like a dress rehearsal. On the other hand, other countries seem to be doing surprisingly well. And even where there are problems, there also exist encouraging signs that technological infrastructure will be built which allow the First World to emerge from this crisis stronger and more durable than ever before. But the beacon of hope for the future can't blunt the immediacy of hardships. Entertainment, on the other hand, can do the trick, and the late 1970s see the rise of escapism to levels not seen since another turbulent time, about a decade before. Even behind-the-scenes, the David-versus-Goliath story of the quintessential scrappy New Hollywood couple against the archetypal media mogul and corporate tycoon captivates the nation. That the subject under deliberation before the courts is the definition of "profit" is no coincidence...

    ---

    So, what can we expect next, and all on account of that wacky redhead?

    We'll be taking our usual general overview of the next production and broadcast season: 1979-80.

    There will be an in-depth look at the British monarchy as the 1970s come to a close, riding the wave of the worldwide revival of interest in monarchism, as it takes advantage with multiple well-timed events, and serves as bulwark to the emerging Commonwealth Trade Agreement.

    We'll revisit the American space program, and how it endeavours to go where no man has gone before in orbit, on the Moon, in deep space, and all places in between.

    The search for alternative power sources - a major preoccupation of the era, ever since the Oil Crisis - will finally produce results, which will prove highly controversial.

    Our exploration of pop culture will continue with a discussion of how two dominant trends of the 1970s - escapism and sexuality - came together, in memorable fashion.

    And, finally, we'll join the media circus and bear witness to the Trial of the Century...

    All this and more, coming up on... That Wacky Redhead!

    ---

    Acknowledgements

    As always, this timeline would not be anywhere near as good without the gracious assistance of many and varied consultants - Chipperback, e of pi, truth is life, vultan, Thande, Andrew T, and Dan1988 - who each help me to bring my half-baked ideas to life as vividly and clearly as the limits of my writing ability permit.

    I would also like to take this occasion to extend my gratitude to those of you who were generous enough to spread word about That Wacky Redhead elsewhere on the internet. Many of these instances came some time ago, but unfortunately I only recently discovered a way to hone my Google-fu to such a degree that it isolated mentions of That Wacky Redhead on sites other than this one or TVTropes, without returning mentions of... well, That Wacky Redhead herself. Thus, without further delay...

    First of all, thanks to Mal-3, a very old friend of this thread (in fact, his readership predates the famed 1968 elections posts), who made what appears to be the oldest reference to That Wacky Redhead outside of AH.com, on December 14, 2011, which was before even many of my above-listed consultants started reading. His endorsement was on the spacebattles.com forums, a place which has been very kind to me (perhaps because there is a sizable overlap in membership between that forum and this one).

    But the lion's share of the mentions of TWR on Spacebattles were made by Lavanya Six, who was also good enough to endorse this timeline in no fewer than three separate locales, including on a personal blog. In recognition of this achievement, I therefore award the No-Prize for Diligent Dissemination, which is, indeed, a whole lot of nothing.

    And last but not least, to His Imperial Majesty, Emperor Norton I, who actually plugged one of his mentions of TWR to the outside on this very thread some time ago, but is continuing to do good work, having mentioned this timeline on none other than the TrekBBS. Truly, I am humbled by your majestic benevolence.

    With regards to those links which I may have overlooked, please rest assured that no omission was intended and that I'm very much obliged by your gesture of support. And to all of those readers from various sources, a (possibly very belated) welcome aboard! Thanks for taking an interest in this quirky little thread of mine.

    Well, maybe it's not that little any more. Because today marks its entry into the Top 10 Most Viewed threads on the entire After 1900 forum, with a total of 369,486 views to date! That is truly amazing and most humbling, and I can't thank all of your many querying clicks enough for helping me to reach this wondrous threshold.

    With all that said, I'm going to slow down the update schedule a notch for the coming cycle. You deserve the very best, and I don't want to get burnout from putting out too much material, too soon. Also, I want an opportunity to touch base with my consultants, and to catch up on my reading. And you're welcome to do so as well. Remember that, if you'd like to review only the Official, Canonical posts of That Wacky Redhead, you can do so on the Alternate History Wiki page for this timeline. Flattered as I am at the many wonderful and often insightful replies to this thread, I understand that it can be very easy to get bogged down in them.

    And finally, a very special thanks to everyone who has read and maintained the TVTropes page for this timeline. It brings me great joy to see that page brimming with tropes :)
     
  9. THE OBSERVER Independent Progressive

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2010
    Location:
    New England
    Let's start with the trial of the century.
     
  10. e of pi Layers on Top of Layers

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2008
    Location:
    Halfway to Anywhere
    I suspect Brainbin put that last because it's going to be the most dramatic post there is this cycle, and he's been playing his plans close to his chest. To put it this way, I worked on the Journey of the Force post, and I still only know about half of his plans for the trial. I'm eager to see it too, but I'm looking forward to seeing it in the place Brainbin intends it to be--capping the cycle.
     
  11. NCW8 Being Analogue in a Digital World

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Location:
    Baselland
    I was half hoping that it was serious and Bob Geldorf was visiting the US at the time so he would release a single called I Don't Like Mud-Pies. After Robin Willliams' attack on John Lennon Roxy Music should release their cover of Jealous Pie :D

    Cheers,
    Nigel
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2013
  12. Clorox23 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    No prob, Bob. :D
     
  13. Falkenburg CMII & Bar Monthly Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Location:
    Lurking
    You are awful. But I like you. ;)

    Falkenburg
     
  14. unclepatrick Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2009
    Location:
    Huntsville Al
    Great post on the Tolkien animated movies of the 1970's.
    How does that success of those films affect Disney and the Black Cauldron ?

    And the Superhero post with Schwarzenegger as the incredible Hulk was a brilliant idea.
    Does Schwarzenegger still play Conan?
    It would be interesting to have Edward R Pressman stay as producer on the Conan films and not fall into Dino De Laurentiis hands. If Schwarzenegger had better name recognition, it might help with the funding problems that Edward Pressman had and we could have seen a Conan film by 1980 or 1981.
     
  15. Francisco Cojuanco To hell with Angelides and Pete Wilson

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Trial of the Century... but who will be the defendant?
     
  16. e of pi Layers on Top of Layers

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2008
    Location:
    Halfway to Anywhere
    So...yeah. Can't say much more about it, other than that it's going to deserve that name.
     
  17. THE OBSERVER Independent Progressive

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2010
    Location:
    New England
    Charles Bludhorn!
     
  18. Brainbin Kingpin of the Cultural Cartel

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Location:
    The British Empire
    And now to catch up on actual responses! My apologies on letting these lie dormant for longer than usual, but as you might expect, this past weekend was rather hectic...

    I'm glad you're still reading, Chuck :) Of course, you are correct; ITTL, on the other hand, the WWII setting will endure throughout.

    Believe it or not, that was just one of several reasons I chose that name for our Superman.

    I thought Hackman stole the show in Superman II, especially. He really had great comedic chops, and really deserved the chance to showcase them more often.

    One is on the way, in the not-too-distant future.

    Hinckley pulled it out of hammerspace ;)

    You're most welcome - especially since we didn't have the foggiest idea what the prank was going to entail until e of pi seized on your query.

    Thank you for the suggestion, Glen. We'll have to see if I can get around to it - though, once again, I wouldn't count on it.

    We're glad you enjoyed it, Falkenburg!

    Thanks for being such a good sport about it, Dan :)

    I bear the lion's share of the blame on this score, as it was my insistence that we telegraph his guest post well in advance (so as to preemptively ward off suspicion), though he's the one who devised the "let's ask everybody on the thread what they think" ploy. But as I mentioned, his guilt over the enthusiastic response - he does have a heart, despite his corrupting influence on my writing :p - secured his involvement in what is already shaping up to be a terrific update to Appendix A.

    I still lament that we couldn't make Freaky Friday work as an inspiration. Maybe if I ever write an ASB popular culture timeline...

    And let it be known that few things make you feel like you've "made it" as a writer quite like somebody lampooning your "writing style" :cool:

    I'm afraid so. The Trial of the Century is going to end this cycle with a bang. One mustn't play his trump card first, after all.

    Maybe next year :p

    The Black Cauldron didn't come out IOTL until 1985. Given the incredible lead time that animated features require, Disney won't be able to properly "react" to the Bakshi Lord of the Rings trilogy until after The Rescuers is released in 1977 - and note that the studio's output had slowed to a virtual crawl in this era, with only two proper film releases in the entire decade of the 1970s (The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was merely a compilation of previously-made shorts with new linking animation added). But it's a good question, because we will be revisiting the animators at the Mouse House later on ITTL. It was quite the tumultuous time for them IOTL, after all...

    Thank you :) Though, as with Hercules in New York, the series sadly requires that his voice be dubbed.

    All I can say is: there's only one way to find out!

    These gentlemen have it; Charles Bluhdorn, as Chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures (and its holding company, Gulf+Western), will personify the defendant.

    ---

    And now, for one of the several visual aids I'll be providing you in the downtime until the next update. The Election Infoboxes are coming, as promised, but first - and especially given that the majority of recommendations of this timeline found throughout the internet specifically highlight the prominence of Star Trek - I've decided to include a hierarchical representation of the chain of command aboard the USS Enterprise during the historic five-year mission. This diagram would have been made with information available to the fandom circa the miniseries; note the date, given in stardate chronology (even IOTL, the show ended just before crossing the 6000 threshold) and in Gregorian chronology. Note also the presence of minor deuterocanonical elements (the position titles for many characters come from the comics, as they were not explicitly mentioned on the show itself). Finally, I'm treating you to a small but common bit of fanon with the Gregorian date; the miniseries only indicated that the five-year mission ran from 2165 to 2170, but September became the consensus choice for the starting month, for obvious reasons. There's less agreement on the exact date, so I'm going with a "safe" choice.

    TWR Enterprise Hierarchy.png
    As you can see, characters are sorted into rows according to rank (from Captain to enlisted), and into columns according to division (Sciences in blue, Command in gold, and Operations in red). All characters in the chain of command are listed in bold (except for Bones who, as the CMO, is outside of it). Note that the diagram is anachronistic; Yeoman Rand left the Enterprise long before Stardate 6000.0, but her early prominence allows her to be remembered alongside other tertiary players like Leslie, DeSalle, and Lemli.

    TWR Enterprise Hierarchy.png
     
  19. Francisco Cojuanco To hell with Angelides and Pete Wilson

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    So civil court, then. Sorry, for me Trial of the Century refers to OJ Simpson, so I thought you meant something where a celeb murdered or raped someone.

    Blonde moment btw, but what became of Roman Polanski? Did he still, uh, have his way with little girls, and all that entailed?
     
  20. Thande A special man who knows these things Donor

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Location:
    God's Own County
    Ooh, very nice Star Trek flowchart. Did Mr. Leslie get a first name in TTL? On another site I used to post on (where they turned Mr. Leslie into an immortal memetic badass a la Captain Scarlet due to him accidentally appearing on the show after the character had been killed off in an earlier episode) they decided to use "Edward" after the actor's real name.
     
Loading...