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You can call me Hal.

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Pretty girls make me nervous.

I'm a gamer. D&D -- dice, battle map, minis. (OK, we usually use LEGO minifigs instead of minis.) I've been on gaming hiatus for a few months because I was feeling kind of burnt out. I'm still on hiatus, actually, at least until January.

But there was one thing I said I'd make an exception for: the all-girl game a friend was trying to get together. We had that last night.

A DM and six players, all women of various ages. All playing female characters. No men in the house, just booze. We roleplayed a lot -- I think I rolled a d20 maybe three times the whole night. And one of those times was arm-wrestling one of the other PCs over who was going to buy drinks. We laughed a lot and got drunk and made many, many suggestive remarks. It was the most fun I've had in months.

It was kind of like fandom, only with dice.


I picked up Series 1 of Cracker on DVD and I've been watching that this weekend. If you've never seen it, you really should. It's a British crime drama starring Robbie Coltrane as Fitz, a psychologist who assists the police with various horrible crimes.

Robbie Coltrane is brilliant as Fitz. If you're used to seeing him play comic characters, you'll be stunned by his nuanced performance here. The supporting cast is all excellent as well. What makes this show so powerful for me is the way it deals with Fitz's rather dreadful personal life as well as the crimes. Fitz drinks, smokes, and gambles to excess. His marriage is in tatters. And we can't help but love him.

I'd forgotten how much in love with DS Jane Penhaligon I used to be. I wanted to make an icon but I can hardly find any good pics of Geraldine Somerville at all, let alone as Penhaligon. Watching her and Fitz together is a beautiful thing.

Cracker is such a real feeling show. I recall convo back on an XF list where people said they'd contemplated writing an XF/Cracker crossover, but realised it would never work for just that reason. Cracker could happen. Maybe it is happening.

And I would highly recommend it.

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Whee! Girl gamers unite! ;)

I just started gaming a few months ago, and I've gotten tastes of lots of different ones - longterm Vampire: The Masquerade, Nobilis, Seventh Sea, one shot of a bunch of stuff including D&D, In Nomine, Call of Cthulu, etc, and now we're also starting a Changeling LARP. There are two (sometimes three) other females in the group of nine or so; we're slowly taking over. Or something.

I think the best I've done was Call of Cthulu late at night in a huge house out in the middle of nowhere with booze and a bunch of really good roleplayers. We kind of spontaneously descended into LARPing. It was so frickin' awesome.

Hey, cool! I've never done any LARPing, myself. Chthulu's always fun. :)

LARPing's interesting . . . I think it's fun to constantly stay in character through a whole session. The Changeling LARP we're starting is in-story taking place and real-life being played in the Winter Garden (huge glass-ceiling atrium with a big marble staircase) in lower Manhattan. Which will be awesome. :)

Why don't you get to game any more?

I moved recently, so I don't know enough people in the city I'm in to put a game together.

Cracker was superb. Even though some of the later plotlines were just a leetle unlikely, Fitz was such a bloke that it never lost me.

Wonderful show.

While I'm watching the show, I think I'd do anything with Fitz. How does he *do* that?

Did you ever see "Supergrass"? It was a Comic Strip Movie. A comedy, of course, but he played a hit man with the most chilling lumpen conviction, and it was hardly a movie that gave space for that kind of performance. Although, now I think about it, it has Keith Allen doing wonderful stuff too.

He's a wonderful actor, and I love him for his softy bits too, like the garage bloke in "Mona Lisa".

He's just a shiny gem. No doubt. Yum.

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You should totally try it sometime. :)

Cracker is some of the best TV I have ever seen, end of story. I loved Christopher Eccleston's exit story -- is that comprehensible to someone not from the UK? I always wondered.

Panhandle is a great creation. You don't see Geraldine Somerville much these days; the last time I glimpsed her was as Lily Potter in the Philosopher's Stone and it took me all night to work out where I'd seen her before.

I think you could write an XF/Cracker crossover but it would have to be on the "Grotesque" part of the XF spectrum

I loved Christopher Eccleston's exit story -- is that comprehensible to someone not from the UK? I always wondered.

What about it do you think might be incomprehensible? It's been a few years since I've seen that ep so I might be a bit hazy on details.

I think you could write an XF/Cracker crossover but it would have to be on the "Grotesque" part of the XF spectrum

Hmm, possibly. Only I think both Mulder and Scully would be made insane by Fitz and he by them. *g*

I am deeply jealous of your all girl gaming night! Every single time I've played D&D or Werewolf or related campaigns it's been me and a whole bunch of guys, with lots and lots of d20 rolling, mental arithmetic and characters who don't fight well sitting around doing nothing (like, for instance, mine, before I wised up and started playing fighter characters). The roleplaying, when you could find a GM worth their salt, was the best part and there was never enough of it.

*g* at the Lego miniatures.

I've heard Cracker widely praised, and you make it sound ever so wonderful. Next time I am housebound I will put it on the list to rent.

Even my usual games with a bunch of guys usually involve a lot of roleplaying. Far from playing munchkin characters, we often play weaker DMG classes like commoners and experts. It's way more fun going through the transformation from farmer to adventurer gradually than making some tough fighter right off.

We have a good group. :)

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