Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
seneschal

Nancy Drew, Investigator

Recommended Posts


I've previously discussed drawing CoC adventure inspiration from the Hardy Boys since the classic mystery series launched in 1927 and the pre-1959 editions give a good feel for the era.  However, Nancy Drew (1930) may be an even better fit.  She's 18, out of school, has a fast car, enjoys a high Credit Rating, can call on her well-connected lawyer father for introductions and legal advice, is nosier than Pinocchio (regardless of what the Narrator says about her tact and good manners), and sometimes packs a rod.  She looks like a debutant but thinks like Batman (who won't appear for another nine years).  She doesn't have Bruce Wayne's dough but also doesn't have a job to tie her down -- lots of free time and freedom of movement.  Who better to become a shoggoth-stomping sister?

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What strikes me upon listening to the first four chapters for the first time is that Drew, at age 18 in 1930, is a competent, confident, and potentially dangerous adult even if she does still live with her Dad.  She does stuff and goes places I wouldn't dare allow my 20-year-old daughter anywhere near in 2020.  It was truly a different era.

Meanwhile, Frank and Joe Hardy -- however athletic and clever they are -- are still very much school kids, focused on homework, friends, and hobbies.  Nancy Drew, only two or three years older, has already moved on.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, The Famous Five, Mystery Incorporated and the Teen Angels are all good examples of investigators and would fit in well with the Investigator theme of Call of Cthulhu. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any excuse to sneak Captain Caveman into a campaign works for me!

Captain Caveman

Source:  Captain Caveman and the Teen Angels, Hanna-Barbera Productions, 1977-1980

Quote:  (As his Flight power fails) “Ugh!  Bad time for energy crisis.”

There are those who insist that Superman was the original superhero.  However, the latest DC Comics reboot indicates that the Man of Steel arrived rather recently (and is much younger than we thought).  Hanna-Barbera, on the other hand, says the world’s first superhero was Captain Caveman, predating even Mightor, another prehistoric crusader for justice.

We don’t know Captain Caveman’s origin or what his early career was like.  He never speaks of it.  He rarely speaks coherently, period.  He survived into the present day frozen in a block of ice.  Found and thawed by a trio of youthful investigators – Dee Dee Skyes, Brenda Chance and Taffy Dare – Captain Caveman became their assistant and protector.  He accompanied the girls during a series of seemingly supernatural mysteries similar to those encountered by the kids of Mystery, Inc., in Scooby Doo, Where Are You?

Captain Caveman is a squat, wiry man – approximately 4’8” tall – completely covered in thick, matted brown hair except for his limbs and prominent nose.  He wears a leopard skin cape (nothing else that we know of) and carries a stout club.  He isn’t the sharpest tool on the bench, but he is outrageously strong and tough.  He routinely hoists animals the size of Brahma bulls overhead and runs around with them.  “Cavey” is perfectly willing to let others handle deductions; he just wants to bash the bad guys.  His club enables him to fly and serves as a sort of utility belt, its hollow interior concealing a number of useful tools.

In addition, Captain Caveman can pull assorted helpful “pets” from beneath his hair ranging from parrot-sized lizards to small mammoths to giant carnosaurs.  The latter are particularly good for intimidating modern felons.  Exactly where these creatures come from and what happens to them when the Captain is done with them isn’t clear.  Each animal can perform a specific task the Captain needs done – providing a ride, acting as a leaf blower or vacuum cleaner, providing local illumination.  Although this ability is technically a Sorcery spell, the effect occurs instantly.  He doesn’t have to prepare for so many turns in advance.

STR 50

CON 28

SIZ 7

INT 8

POW16

DEX12

APP 9

Move:  10

Hit Points:  18 (35 CON + SIZ)

Damage Bonus:  +3D6

Armor:  10 (kinetic, cold)

Attacks:  Brawl 63%, 1d3+db; Grapple 63%, 1d3+db; Projection 62%, ?d6; Club 63%, 1d8+db

Skills:  Climb 78%, Dodge 62%, Fly 54%, Jump 63%, Language (Caveman) 40%, Language (English) 38%, Listen 63%, Parry (with club) 63%, Projection 62%, Spot 63%, Swim 63%, Throw 63%, Track 48%

Powers:

“Thick, Matted Hair” – Armor, 10 points vs. kinetic and cold damage; 20 power points

“Throw Club and Hang On” – Flight, 8 levels, 8 power points; costs 2-8 energy to activate (depending on whether Captain Caveman is carrying someone in his free arm), plus 1 energy per turn to maintain.  He can carry a person or object up to SIZ 15 while flying.

Super Characteristics – + 33 STR, +11 CON; 44 power points

“Cartoon Character Tough” – Regeneration, 4 levels, 4 hit points healed per combat round, 12 power points

Instantly Summon Prehistoric Beast, no range

Extra Energy, +80 energy points (total 96)

Failings:  Dependents (Teen Angels), significant involvement, +3 power points; Noxious personal habits (Uncivilized, eats anything, no manners whatsoever), +3 power points

Notes:  Captain Caveman’s stats were randomly rolled at the “Mighty” level on the online Call of Cthulhu Creature Generator, but his SIZ, INT and APP then were greatly reduced to meet the character concept.  He had 86 power points based on these modified characteristics, plus 6 for Failings, total 92.  He had 500 skill points plus 80 personal skill points based on INTx10, total 580.

Edited by seneschal
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, seneschal said:

She looks like a debutant but thinks like Batman (who won't appear for another nine years).  She doesn't have Bruce Wayne's dough but also doesn't have a job to tie her down -- lots of free time and freedom of movement.

Nancy Drew is Barbara Gordon, a.k.a. Batgirl.  Or, perhaps rather, Batgirl is Nancy Drew.

More appropriate to the Superworld forum, this reminds me of my proposal for a Young Adult illustrated novella series, Batgirl and Robin, featuring a Nancy-Drew-competent 17-year-old Barbara Gordon and her 14-year-old, Richie-Rich sidekick, Bruce Wayne, who has all the best toys.

!i!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't forget Josie and the Pussycats (Archie Comics, 1963, although the 1970 Hanna-Barbera cartoon is perhaps better remembered today).  The three-member girl band and their entourage at least had a practical reason for traveling around and stumbling into trouble -- they had to reach their next gig, mystery or no mystery.  That also gave their problem-solving urgency.  They had to make it to their next destination in time to set up and couldn't stay in one place too long searching for clues.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, seneschal said:

Don't forget Josie and the Pussycats

I saw the Wikipedia reference but don't remember watching as a kid. Alan looks a lot like Fred from Scooby Doo though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, soltakss said:

I saw the Wikipedia reference but don't remember watching as a kid. Alan looks a lot like Fred from Scooby Doo though.

Ok, this is where things get complicated.  The Pussycats came first in comics and were an established part of the Archie-verse.  Hanna-Barbera adapted the core Archie characters for The Archie Show cartoon in 1968, a modest success demanding a follow-up.  However, while Josie was in production the studio had a mega-hit with Scooby Doo in 1969.  Plus HB had originally conceived the kids of Mystery, Inc., as members of a traveling rock band.  So it was perhaps inevitable that Josie and the Pussycats would get shoehorned into what Hanna-Barbera considered a winning formula.  It was possibly also inevitable that HB would save money by reusing character designs and voice actors.  Not only did road hand (and red-haired Josie's love interest) Alan Mayberry look more than a bit like Freddie Jones but radio DJ Casey Kasem provided the voices for both Scooby Doo's Shaggy Rogers and Josie's cowardly manager Alexander Cabot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/25/2020 at 2:29 AM, soltakss said:

The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, The Famous Five, Mystery Incorporated and the Teen Angels are all good examples of investigators and would fit in well with the Investigator theme of Call of Cthulhu. 

You would dare unleash the mighty Shaggy upon a poor and unsuspecting mythos? How cruel! :D

On 3/24/2020 at 8:56 PM, seneschal said:


I've previously discussed drawing CoC adventure inspiration from the Hardy Boys since the classic mystery series launched in 1927 and the pre-1959 editions give a good feel for the era.  However, Nancy Drew (1930) may be an even better fit.  She's 18, out of school, has a fast car, enjoys a high Credit Rating, can call on her well-connected lawyer father for introductions and legal advice, is nosier than Pinocchio (regardless of what the Narrator says about her tact and good manners), and sometimes packs a rod.  She looks like a debutant but thinks like Batman (who won't appear for another nine years).  She doesn't have Bruce Wayne's dough but also doesn't have a job to tie her down -- lots of free time and freedom of movement.  Who better to become a shoggoth-stomping sister?

 

I remember reading these books as a kid. I don't remember much of the stories, but I do remember loving them. Comparing Nancy to Batman and piting her against the mythos has to be one of the strangest and coolest things I have heard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think some themes in CoC are a bit too adult for the likes of Nancy Drew.  Innsmouth, for example, is always teetering on the verge of Hentai at the best of times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...