Video Killed the Radio
- Minor Story Arc
- Visit Ouroborus to Flashback to this story
- Television (Grandville)
- A broken boombox
- 45 - 50
See who won the best revenge category
Right after the singing competition show is over, the Television changes channels until it stops on a music-industry award show. Musicians and stars hobnob in their finest clothes as they meet to congratulate themselves on shoveling mediocre entertainment to the masses for another year. They're right in the middle of giving out some awards. Two presenters dressed in clothing that costs more than it's weight in gold take the stage, and engage in forced rehearsed banter. When they finally announce the categories, it's something of a surprise:
'The winner for worst betrayal by an inanimate object is:
The Radio, for trying to kill Dread Tomax!
The winner for best retribution against an outmoded form of media is...' They hang this pause, building up the tension.
The presenters keep smiling their rictus-like grins as you wait to hear who's going to win the coveted best retribution against an outmoded form of media category.
'The winner is... Dread Tomax! Yes, Dread Tomax, for foiling the Radio's evil plans once again by defeating the next poor fool to fall for it's siren song. And now we all know that moment, but this time let's see it as well as hear it!' With that, the camera pans to a large stage, where an intricate musical stage production begins to illustrate the action of a rocking musical number. It starts with an Arachnos technician on trial for divulging secrets under duress, then as his punishment the technician is transformed into an Arachnos Tarantula. All through the action, there's a voice from a radio whispering in his ear, telling him that worse will happen if he doesn't kill you. Then you're in the middle of it. You're in the stage production, as the Television warns you, and you go face your foe, this spider created by the Radio. It all makes sense now. You know what to do.
Arachnos Base @ Grandville (Arachnos)
Huskers is in here. Somewhere, the Radio is whispering to him, telling him to destroy you.
Objective: You found a recording on Huskers
When you play this recording, it sounds like it was recorded right off the radio:
'Hey there, all you mad-mad-mad-mad maniacs out in the Rogue Isles. You just found the keys to the Fort Knox that is your criminal career right here when you tuned in to Radio!
RADIOOOOOO!!! Free Opportunity! And today, have we got some important secrets to share! We've heard from some callers who ain't gonna be able to call no one no more that a certain well respected Villain has become some kind of crazy TeeVee Zombie! Word is, everyone who Television says has gotta go is getting gone! With that kinda crazy goin' round, you gotta wonder who's gonna be next? Well, wonder no longer! We got a hot tip for a poor Arachnos soul named Husker: Watch out! Television wants you gone, so you're gonna have to be ready to strike first and eliminate the elminator before Television has you cancelled!
And remember folks: Television is the greatest threat not just to mankind, but also to Radiokind, and most particularly to your own Radio
RADIOOOOOO!!! Free Opportunity!'
Mission Complete: You defeated Technician Huskers
By the time you get back, your head is clearer. The Awards show is still on, but it's near the end now. Another pair of interchangeable presenters is up on stage, giving out the last award. With a big flourish, they bring out the last golden envelope, and say: 'And the final award tonight, is for someone who's done a great deal for us all. The award for Loyal defender of Television goes to:
Dread Tomax, for destroying another wicked agent of Radio!'
Learn why the Radio is really your enemy
The Television is showing a popular show where average Americans with delusions of talent attempt to sing pop songs, and then have their performances torn to shreds by music critics. As a final act of gladiatorial sacrifice, they throw thier dreams on the mercy of the viewing public, who then vote for which tin-eared fool deserves a doomed contract and a shot at stardom that's almost certain to fail. It's a show about destroying and degrading the all-too human dream of being special and secretly talented, and through that degradation allowing others to feel alright about the failures that are their own mediocre lives. As a villain, you concede that it's genius. As another singer finishes yowling her heart out, you stay tuned to watch her dreams be eviscerated as the critics lay into the performance. But this time, you realize that they aren't talking to the singer. They're talking to you.
'Well that's one performance I'm glad I'll never hear on the Radio,' says the harsh British critic. 'That would blow out the speakers.'
'Well, I hate to say it,' the helpful ex-dancer sighs, 'But the Radio might just deserve something like that.'
'Yeah, dog!' interjects the last critic. 'That Radio would deserve it, with the way it's been dissin' my dog, Dread Tomax.'
You're absolutely right!' agrees the harsh British critic. 'The radio might have even helped Dread Tomax and other villains in the past, but now, it's gone the other way. You see, Dread Tomax, the Radio is really your enemy. Let me tell you why...
The rest of the show stops still, and the British critic keeps talking. His voice seems weird, though, slightly disjointed and full of hisses and pops of static. It's like something else is moving his image, like something else is speaking with his voice:
'Radio is everywhere. Radio waves blanket the world, travel into space, and move through the body of every person on Earth. Radio has become so commonplace, people ignore it. That is Radio's power. Once, Radio thought that it would triumph, and create a world united by sound alone. But it failed the moment Television arrived, and Radio has never forgotten. Radio is jealous of Television. Radio cannot provide the warmth, the light, the images of Television. Radio hates Television, and Radio attacks those who have helped Television. Now, Radio is gathering enemies against you.'
The image on screen slowly zooms in ever closer, until the face itself starts to dissolve into pure static. But the voice continues: 'You have been loyal to Television, so Television will help you. Radio is speaking to a master spy of the Council. He will soon believe Radio's lies. Radio will use him against you unless you eliminate him first.'
And then the scene snaps back, and another nasal singer is belting out a tune. But you know what to do.
@ Grandville (Council)
You can't explain how, but you knew where to find the Council Spymaster. He's in here, somewhere.
Objective: The Council Spymaster breathed a few words before he collapsed.
Mission Complete: You defeated the Council Spymaster
When you get back, the show is just about to end. They're going to announce which wanna-be singers will be bumped up to could-be and which ones will get cast down into the never-was. Right before the final votes are counted, the program freezes for a moment, and the screen zooms in on one of the contestants. The camera careens from face to face in a blur, each mouth saying part of the same phrase: 'Good Work, Dread Tomax'. In an instant, it's over, and the show comes to an end.
Accept Television's help to finally defeat Radio
The Channels keep changing until it hits something you haven't seen in year: Actual music videos on a Music Video channel, and the songs are perfect. An old hit or two you remember from your younger days, some cutting edge stuff that's really good, and a few trippy but good videos from bands you've never heard of. After the set, one of the channel's hosts comes out and starts to talk about the music they just played, telling you really interesting stuff about the bands and the songs. Then he pauses a moment, and the studio set behind him become still and calm. And he looks right out at you.
'Did you like that, Dread Tomax?', the video jockey asks. 'Television would like that to be available all the time. But Radio, in it's jealousy, won't let Television do that. It's time to finally strike back at Radio directly. Television will help you. Television will help you to finally defeat Radio.'
The music video host looks pleased. As he talks, electronic echoes begin to shudder through his voice, and the camera slowly starts to grow ever closer.
'Television is glad to help you. The Radio is the enemy. The Radio has gathered allies, Freakshow who have forsaken Television, and now worship the Radio. But don't worry. Television will show you what to do.'
The Image on screen changes to a live video of you, watching television. Then the you on TV turns and leaves. In the corner, words appear, saying:
'Audio Gangfight (Freakbash)'
For the love of Television
The you on-screen then proceeds to a warehouse infested with Freaks and start to battle. Now you know what to do.
Abandoned warehouse @ Grandville (Freakshow)
Echoing from deep inside, you hear a voice shout 'Radio, RADIO, RADIOOOO!!!! Free Opportunity!' This is the right place.
Objective: The Radio has been destroyed.
Mission Complete: You have destroyed the Radio!
When you get back the Television's screen is full of white light that dissolves into a goofy looking band playing an old song, but the lyrics have been changed. The refrain now goes: 'Video killed the Radio, Dread Tomax, Video killed the Radio, Dread Tomax,' over and over.
After that song finishes, you keep watching music Television for some time. Eventually, you realize you've been watching Television for a while. It almost feels like you fell asleep and were having a weird dream. Some of the things you thought you remembered doing now seem fuzzy, as if they're somehow buried under a layer of static.
Souvenir: A broken boombox
You feel kind of weird when you look at this broken boombox. You did this, you destroyed it. that's incontrovertible. The radio has the marks of your handiwork all over it's battered plastic case. But it's hard to remember why you did it, even though felt so sure at the time. Was it really you? Or was it
Video Killed the Radio
It all began as you were watching television, when, for some reason you really can't remember, you decided that you had to eliminate a Council spymaster. It's difficult to remember why, but it seemed very important at the time. As he fell, he did mention something odd. He said that he'd heard you were coming on a radio show called 'Radio Free Opportunity'. The name might ring a bell, but it's hard to remember, and probably best just to watch some more TV.
You were watching TV again when you realized that another enemy of yours had to go. This time it was an Arachnos technician. He also said something about a radio that warned him about you. Afterwards, it all made sense: These people where only tools. The real enemy, was the Radio itself. And if you hadn't been watching so much Televison, you never would have realized it!
The answer was obvious, or at least, it seemed obvious then. You had to destroy the Radio. Radio had turned against you, turned others against you, and was even now plotting against you! Invisible airwaves were flooding through the world, through the atmosphere, through your body, out into space! You understood it all now, thanks to what you'd seen on Television.
Armed with this knowledge, you confronted the Radio itself, and fought past the Freaks who worshipped it, and destroyed it.
Or at least, you think that was how it went. It's all strange now, like your memories are blanketed with snow. But you're pretty sure you did what you needed to do, what you had to do, for Television.