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Recap / Film Reroll: Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure

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We totally play Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure! Scott is most triumphant! Joz is totally bodacious!
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Episodes 30-31 of Film Reroll. Based on the 1989 movie.

Much like in the film, the story centers around two students - Bill S. Preston Esquire and Ted “Theodore” Logan - with aspirations of becoming rock stars. Unfortunately, they have fallen behind on their studies. Fortunately, the boys are given some unexpected aid from a time traveller named Rufus, who lends them his time machine.

Thus Bill and Ted - who misinterpreted the test requirements somewhat - set out on a quest to collect famous historical figures, and have them give a report on what they think about the 1980s. Unlike the film however, the time periods they visit are slightly different. Now they include places such as Minoan Crete, Fascist Italy and Feudal Japan.

Paulo Quiros has said that he struggled while planning this campaign, having difficulty reconciling the Bill and Ted universe - which runs on You Already Changed the Past - with the Film Reroll Role-playing games - where the plot can go in whatever direction it pleases. He eventually decided that the story is set in an Alternate Universe. Our protagonists will always cause history to happen, but it will not necessarily match up with our history.

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Starring Jocelyn "Joz" Vammer as Bill S. Preston Esq, Scott Aiello as Ted “Theodore” Logan and Paulo Quiros as the Dungeon Master.

Followed by Halloween 2


Tropes:

  • Accidental Misnaming: After Napoleon begins a sentence with "To be frank...", Bill and Ted spend the rest of the adventure calling him "Frank".
  • Actor Allusion: Ted claims that when he grows up he wants to be a police officer and surf a lot and parachute out of an airplane. Much like another character originally played by Keanu Reeves.
  • Adaptational Badass: Bill and Ted. Napoleon was already pretty badass in Real Life, but he probably didn't kill any giant serpents.
  • After the End: At one point, the gang ends in in the 61st century at the place where Venice once was. There is — at the very least — no traces left of the city itself, and the only survivor they come across is a Ridiculously Human Robot who begs to be taken with them as there is — in her opinion — nothing to see in that time period.
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  • All Myths Are True: It turns out that both King Minos and his labyrinth really existed. (This might also be the case for Achilles and Agamemnon, if the old man the boys spoke to is to be believed.)
  • All Part of the Show: Much like in the movie, the whole school believes that the historical figures are just actors. The boys' history teacher thinks that their Mussolini is terrifyingly accurate.
  • Alternate Reality Game: To determine where the time machine would end up, Paulo Quiros created a program which converts a random eight-digit number into a date and a location (and yes, incrementing the number by one really does take you to the next day.) You can find it here.
  • Amazon Chaser: Both Bill and Ted are excited to meet female samurai warrior Tomoe Gozen. Ted even asks her if she wants to go to the prom with him.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Tomoe Gozen is implied to have a crush on both Lydia and Ted.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: Any time Bill and Ted end up somewhere that they didn't go in the movie and Paulo didn't prep for.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: The story gets a new action-packed climax in which Bill, Ted, Bill, Ted, Tomoe, and Napoleon fight a Lydia who has grown to giant size.
  • Attractive Bent-Gender: At one point Bill and Ted assume paper-thin female disguises, and promptly attract a male admirer. They only just manage to get away.
  • Beast in the Maze: Not a Minotaur (as far as we know) but rather a giant snake, which is eventually killed by Napoleon through decapitation.
  • Big Bad: Our heroes manage to antagonise quite a few people in this campaign, but Lydia is — literally — the biggest threat, and the last one they face off against.
  • Big Blackout: Lydia causes one when hooking herself up to a modern power outlet. Turns out that she needed a lot more power to function than anyone expected.
  • Bottle Episode: While the campaign has an epic plot with tons of locations and characters, it also only has three players, including the DM. This is the lowest number of participants since Labyrinth. note 
  • Brick Joke: When Bill and Ted bring Napoleon to the Eighties, he ends up in a tree. When they later lose him in Athens, they suggest to start looking in the trees. Both times, they call it "[Napoleon's] natural habitat."
  • Call-Back:
  • Chekhov's Gun: Lydia's blackout causes the school presentation to be delayed, allowing Bill and Ted to get there in time.
  • Comically Missing the Point: When Bill and Ted ask an old Greek man if he knows any historical figures, he mentions Agamemnon, Socrates and Platon. The boys think that he actually knew them personally, and get very sad when hearing that they're all dead.
  • Crosscast Role: Joz Vammer plays Bill. This later becomes Recursive Crossdressing when he and the rest of the gang disguise themselves as women.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: Bill theorises — with no evidence whatsoever — that they are meant to save the world from an evil mastermind. By sheer coincidence, they actually run into — and are tasked with defeating — such a character later.
  • Description Cut: When a very angry King Minos shouts something, Socrates attempts to explain it to Napoleon. He tells the boys that it appears to be something about feeding them roast duck. Cut to them all being thrown in a dungeon, and Napoleon saying apologetically that "roast duck" and "prison" are very similar in Ancient Greek.
  • Deus ex Machina: Rufus has a tendency to appear when all seems lost and provide our protagonists with a way out of their problems. Justified in that he's a time traveller trying to make sure history takes its rightful course. Paulo notes that he is making a roll, against higher odds each time, to determine whether Rufus will turn up when he's needed; and there is at least one point where Bill and Ted call for his help and he doesn't show up, leaving them to improvise a solution that makes things, at least in the short term, much worse.
  • Dirty Coward: Mussolini, who makes not one but two attempts at taking the time machine for himself while leaving everyone else to die.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Napoleon is very fascinated by a statue of Athena.
  • Don't Try This at Home: At the end of the first session, Paulo says that letting Bill and Ted go anywhere in time that the story or the players' whims take them was a lot of fun but that his advice to other DMs would be Don't Try This At Home.
  • Dreadful Musician: Apparently, Bill and Ted's first attempt at creating a music video is... not very good. Again, Rufus insists that they will get better.
  • Entertainingly Wrong: As in the film, Ted doesn't know much about history. For instance, he thinks that Genghis Khan tried to kill Captain Kirk.
  • Eternal English: Despite living in the 61st century, Lydia speaks modern English fluently. This is actually Foreshadowing the fact that she's an ageless android, who might be much, much older than she appears. It is subsequently established that she can speak many languages fluently.
  • Evil All Along: Lydia, whose plan turns out to be to Take Over the World.
  • Exact Words: When the boys offer to take the robot Lydia — whose batteries are running low — to The '80s to recharge, she says that she "will take the power from [their] time." Turns out that she meant all of the power...
  • Fun with Foreign Languages:
    • In Crete, Bill and Ted communicate through a chain of translators — Bill and Ted speak English, Napoleon speaks a bit of English and a bit of Greek, Socrates speaks Greek and a bit of Minoan. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.
    • This becomes a Subverted Trope when the conspirator Bill and Ted meet in Fascist Italy thinks that he must have misunderstood them when it sounded to him like they said thar they had "Napoleon in the phone booth." Turns out that this is exactly what they meant.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Bill's comment to Lydia after she steals all of the electricity in San Dimas (if not the world.)
    Bill: [Most women] do not... plug into anything.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Napoleon being taken out of 1805 doesn't really seem to be that big of a hiccup to history. However, as pointed out by a professional historian on Reddit, Napoleon dissapearing in 1805 would probably change history much, much more than what's shown in the campaign.
  • Look Behind You: Ted tries this on the Big Bad a couple of times; first it's the Goodyear Blimp, the second time it's Robbie the Robot. She falls for it both times, perhaps on account of not being human.
  • Mistaken for Spies: In Fascist Italy, Bill and Ted are confused for CIA agents sent there to kill Benito Mussolini. Instead, they end up saving his life by kidnapping him.
  • Mistaken Nationality: Happens to everyone in the Japanese stadium Bill and Ted find themselves in, as they erroneously think that they've landed in China.
  • My Future Self and Me:
    • As in the film, Bill and Ted encounter their future selves the first time they meet Rufus.
    • Also, at the end of the campaign, Bill and Ted team up with themselves from 25 years into the future (which would be in 2014, three years before the campaign was released) to take down the Big Bad.
  • Next Sunday A.D.: Played With. After dialing in the code "69696969," the gang briefly ends up in a Japanese sport stadium on the 24th October 2018. For the players, this is just barely a year forward in time, but for the characters, it's 20 Minutes into the Future.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Bill and Ted thinks that they've defeated Lydia once they've knocked her out of the time stream. Instead, it turns out that she's ended up in the native time of Rufus, where she's continued to cause chaos and destruction.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Joz, on realizing that Bill and Ted have gatecrashed one of Mussolini's fascist rallies.
      Joz: We. Are. Fucked. [as Bill] Nice, dude! Let's go up to that second level for a closer look!
    • Joz again, on realizing that Bill and Ted have been mistaken for CIA assassins.
      Joz: [cheerfully] We are fucked!
  • Omniglot:
    • Napoleon can speak at least four languages, French, Italian and (a bit of) English and Ancient Greek. Needless to say, this proves itself useful during the adventure.
    • Meanwhile, Lydia can speak all languages. Though she can only help as long as she has enough power. And even she has trouble understanding Bill and Ted some of the time because, well, it's Bill and Ted.
  • Once More, with Clarity!: Future!Ted thanking Rufus for saving Lady Tomoe sounds extremely random the first time, and the listener might forget about it completely (especially since the episodes were originally released almost a month apart.) However, by the time we see the scene from the future Bill and Ted's point of view, we have learned the context behind the line.
  • Power of Rock: The weapon used in the final battle. Rufus probably explained it best.
    Rufus: I need you guys all to come forward in time — to my time — to use the power of rock and roll to defeat Lydia.
  • Pun: In Feudal Japan, Bill and Ted meet soldiers who are capturing actual wild stallions. They completely miss the irony of the situation.
  • Ridiculously Human Robot: Lydia could pass as human unless you roll well on your perception check, although Paulo says that even if you took her for human you'd think there was something a bit odd about her.
  • Running Gag:
    • Bill and Ted always introducing themselves with the full "together we are Wyld Stallyns" intro — followed by Ted adding some variation of "but that's not important right now".
    • Bill and Ted making mental notes about bits of ancient or futuristic architecture that would look most triumphant in their music video when they get around to making one.
    • Bill and Ted thinking that the phone company is behind everything.
    • In the second episode, the very hungry Bill and Ted asking if there is pizza around, which there never is. (Eventually, they are more than satisfied with some Japanese jerky.)
  • Running Gagged: The introductory catchphrase running gag gets paid off the last time Bill and Ted introduce themselves, to the audience that has gathered for a rock concert that will decide the fate of the world:
    Bill and Ted: ...and all together, we are Wyld Stallyns!
    Ted: And you do need to know this!
  • Samus Is a Girl: Ted was probably not expecting the evil mastermind to be a Robot Girl, given that he calls "him" a "dude." Then again, it was pure (bad) luck that he and Bill were even right about the existence of an evil mastermimd in the first place.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Doctor Who references were almost inevitable. One particulary nice moment is Napoleon saying "allons-y" note  before entering the phone booth-shaped time machine (which the players just start calling "the TARDIS" after a while.)
    • Paulo's interpretation of Ancient Minoan sounds oddly like Dothraki. He mentions that this was a deliberate reference.
    • When Ted rides to save Tomoe's life, Paulo Quiros says that The Final Countdown plays in the background.
  • Squee!: Joz's reaction to Paulo describing Napoleon's shy fanboy reaction to finding himself in the presence of Socrates.
  • Stacy's Mom: Much like in the original film, both Bill and Ted have a thing for Bill's stepmom Missy.
  • Surprisingly Good Foreign Language: Paulo's version of Napoleon speaks much better French than the one in the movie. (This is actually an In-Universe example too, since Napoleon was born in Corsica.)
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Bill and Ted in a stadium in Italy explaining that they are totally adults and would never drink irresponsibly.
  • That Came Out Wrong: Invoked during a battle with a giant serpent. Joz mentions that she's being very good and avoiding innuendoes about wrestling with the snake, and Paulo responds by letting loose with as many innuendoes as he can think of.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Bill and Ted are surprisingly unfazed about seeing telephone booths fall down from the sky. Though they are bothered by it, since somebody could get hurt if they were hit by one.
  • War Is Hell: Bill and Ted are both affected by seeing a real battle for the first time, though both get over it pretty quickly.
  • Which Me?: When Bill and Ted team up with their future selves to save the world, there are a few moments of confusion about who exactly the GM is talking about.

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