Literature: Antipaladin Blues
Trope-conscious Dark Fantasy
parody written by Jess Gulbranson
, concerning the adventures of an unwitting antipaladin
in a dangerous
world clearly founded on some common tabletop RPG tropes. Is first in a trilogy, followed by Archlich Hotel
and Johnny Devil Comes To Town
. No longer in Development Hell
... buy it here!
The series provides examples of:
- Anti-Magic: The ‘thaumoethereal’ explosion wipes out an entire city’s magic.
- Artifact of Doom: Elvist, the Needle of Flame.
- Badass Normal: Derrick.
- Bad Powers, Good People: Frank Burley, who is an ancient undead sorcerer, but still wants to save the world.
- Explored with Kannon’s character, who has an evil day job, does mostly heroic things, but is still basically a murderous thug.
- Benevolent Boss: Chamberlin, despite being a mage who is a corrupt government fixer, is clearly trying to be Kannon’s friend.
- Black and Grey Morality: Like somebody threw up charcoal on the manuscript.
- Blood Magic: Kannon’s enchanted armor runs on this.
- Combat Pragmatist: It helps when your armor is covered in blades and spikes… any movement can be an attack. At one point Kannon uses a barrel of molasses to fight a shaman who may have an enchantment protecting him from edged weapons.
- The Empire: Galak’s Empire, and its counterpart to the east, Pluton.
- The End of the World as We Know It: Either ‘clean and nice’ or ‘fiery reverse Ikea run by Cenobites’, depending on whether the Angels and Demons take over.
- Evil Overlord: Eboral, only mentioned until book three.
- Five Races: Averted, in that nonhumans have been all but exterminated by the start of the books.
- Functional Magic: The almost Steampunk setting runs on this, with the industrial complex running on Alchemy in particular.
- Hub Level: Eboral’s ‘Hall of Gates’.
- Humans Are Flawed: The fundamental reason the Gods, Angels, and Demons are involved on this world at all.
- Infinity+1 Sword: Elvist.
- Magic Knight: Kannon, Viscount Hathoway.
- Never a Self-Made Woman: Averted by Avery, who is out to break the magical glass ceiling.
- Our Angels Are Different: Androgynous, white-robed humanoids who at best are WellIntentionedExtremists but are actually an alien race fascinated with the human superego.
- Our Demons Are Different: Likewise, an alien race who like humanity for their perversity, much the way people like geese for their livers.
- Redemption Equals Death: Kannon resigns himself to this at the end of the first book. It doesn’t take.
- Avery Is A Girl: Clumsily revealed in her first chapter, but played straight with Frank’s inability to comprehend ‘butch’.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: While a protagonist and somewhat more benign, Frank Burley is something of a Sleeping Evil In A Can… he later mentions some of his fellow Eldritch Abominations who fit this trope to a T.
- Shout-Out: To Alejandro Jodorowsky, Monty Python, Wolverine, the various settings of Dungeons & Dragons -really too many list, as this is an integral part of the book's style.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Definitely more cynical.
- Something Blues
- Squishy Wizard: Lampshaded. “After all, no matter how powerful you were, there was always a chance of someone getting in a lucky swing.”
- Took a Level in Badass: Avery, after she starts keeping some more dangerous company.
- Turn Undead: Avery, who was raised by exorcist monks, tries this on Frank Burley, Last of the Red-hot Archliches.
- With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Frank was a man once…
- Wizard Beard: Chamberlin’s lack of one is lampshaded by Kannon.