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Series / Bar Karma

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Bar Karma is a 12-episode series created by the Current TV online community and Will Wright. The story concerns a magic bar that exists outside of space and time, where people who have reached a crossroads in their life wander in unexpectedly. The latest visitor, Internet millionaire Doug Jones, won the bar in a poker game against James Anon, the mysterious 50,000-year-old bartender. He and the other regular patron Dayna use the bar's mystic tools to help find out how to help, while Doug goes out of the bar to help them hands-on.


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Contains examples of:

  • Applied Phlebotinum: The bar's globe, cards, TV, jukebox, the bar itself...
  • Arbitrary Skepticism: Doug works in a magic bar outside of space and time with a coworker who's over 20,000 years old, but up until the last episode, he refuses to believe that Dayna has supernatural bad luck.
  • Audience Participation: Online community helped select plots.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: In episode 7, Caleb manages to convince Joseph to take the wrong path of the two roads before him and continue in his criminal ways-though granted, the alternatives weren't much better.
  • Born Lucky: Doug has extremely good luck for unknown reasons, which is why James and Dayna let him take ownership of the bar.
  • Butt-Monkey: For someone with unnatural luck, Doug has a lot of bad things happen to him.
  • Clear My Name: Doug.
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  • Doing In the Wizard: The bar TV's ability to pick up news from theoretical futures is initially explained as just being part of the Bar's magic, but episode 12 reveals that they actually come from an in-universe TV channel called "Many Worlds News", which broadcasts people predicting news stories that could happen in the near future.
  • Doom Magnet: Dayna (supposedly, but only if she leaves the bar).
  • Evil Counterpart: Episode 7 introduces Caleb, someone with a past connected to James, who could serve as a potential Arch-Enemy.
  • From Beyond the Fourth Wall: In Episode 11, an audience member enters the bar and interacts with the characters.
  • Inn Between the Worlds: Bar Karma exists outside of time and space.
  • Non-Answer: In the first episode, after Doug tries to leave Bar Karma through the back door:
    Dayna: Where do you think he is?
    James: Somewhere between the beginning and the end, I guess.
  • Non-Linear Character: Since Bar Karma is located "behind time and before space", James, Dayna, Doug, and anyone else who stays in it for long enough can move through time seemingly at random. Someone who enters Bar Karma in the future might get there earlier than someone who comes in during the Middle Ages.
  • The Powers That Be: James's former employers, apparently.
  • Really 700 Years Old: James has been working at Bar Karma for hundreds of thousands of years.
  • Seen It All: James. After several thousand lifetimes of working in Bar Karma, no new arrivals ever faze him, no matter how bizarre their problems.
  • Thematic Theme Tune: Basically the only lyrics are "You will always reap what you sow."
  • The Reveal: Doug and Dayna were childhood friends.
  • Two Roads Before You: Every customer.
  • Weirdness Censor: Nobody ever questions where Doug comes from when he leaves the bar and gets teleported to an unpredictable location.

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