Episode One Hundred And Twelve – Volcano Day

Volcano Day

The tiny band of survivors are all that’s left of Humanity. They don’t have the right skills, or enough people, to rebuild, but they do have a time machine and the ability to pluck people out of history who’d otherwise have died in various disasters, and those people would have the skills.
Everyone in the past knew this sort of stuff, right?
And they’d be really grateful, and be happy to do what we said, wouldn’t they?

Volcanic activity caused by the gravity of a nearby body moves across the planet in a regular and predictable way, so a sufficiently daring crew could take advantage of that to run their heist when they know that everyone will have cleared out.
Of course, that does mean dealing with the eruption.

It’s one thing to find that you’re living in a simulation & try to step outside of it, to meet the entities who created you. What happens when you get access to the controls?

Explorers find the under-construction robotic invasion fleet which someday soon will wipe out Humanity.
Right now, it has no idea they’re there, but that’s going to change if they’re not very careful indeed.

The reason we’ve never found aliens is that humanity from an alternate timeline has been wiping them out to ‘protect’ us, whether we want them to or not. The trail of genocide is, apparently, for our own good.

Without money, the orphanage will close. The folks who should have solved the problem are in jail or on the run, so it’s up to a strange time-traveller and their companions to set things right.


Polydactyl Cats


Masks: A New Generation
Buffy The Vampire Slayer (rpg)

London is still sinking as it recovers from the Ice Age – Post-Glacial Rebound

Millennium, by John Varley
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The Taking of Beverly Hills

Ken Wahl
Matt Frewer

Poor Knights Islands

Timeline, by Michael Crichton

Lemmings (game)

Taupo Volcano

Elon Musk
Robert Heinlein

Auckland Volcanic Field

Joe Versus the Volcano

Monkey Island (game series)

Kanamara Matsuri (“Festival of the Steel Phallus”)
( and now “Japanese Penis Festival” is in my search history ~ T. Jones )

Dragon Head (manga)



The Chronicles of Riddick
The Mummy Returns

Plan 9 from Outer Space

The Stainless Steel Rat, by Harry Harrison
The “To The Stars” Trilogy, by Harry Harrison – Wheelworld is the second book

Fiasco (rpg)

Hard Rain
Dante’s Peak

Morgan Freeman
Christian Slater
Pierce Brosnan
Tommy Lee Jones

La Brea Tar Pits

Big Red Couch Episode 110 – Good news, I have solved the Fermi Paradox. Bad news, I have solved the Fermi Paradox

Dark Conspiracy
Lester Smith

The Appendix

The Gutterskypes – Little Robots, Big World – “Magnificent Constructs”
( episodes 191, 192, 193, & 195 of The Gutter Skypes ~ T. Jones )

The Brave Little Toaster
The Brave Little Toaster Goes To Mars
( there was also The Brave Little Toaster To The Rescue ~ T. Jones )

There Will Come Soft Rains, by Ray Bradbury

Kuiper Belt

Von Neumann Machines

Spider Robinson

Spider Jerusalem
Transmetropolitan, by Warren Ellis & Darick Robertson

Cepheus Engine (rpg)
Traveller (rpg)
Aftermath! (rpg)
3:16 – Carnage Among The Stars

Warhammer 40k (wikipedia link, because it’s kind of complicated)

The Curse of Chalion” & “The Paladin of Souls“, by Lois McMaster Bujold
( Craig had the book wrong – the reference he was thinking of was in Paladin of Souls, not Curse of Chalion ~ T. Jones )

Paranoia (wikipedia link)


Star Trek (TOS) – Mirror, Mirror

Nelson Muntz

Chicxulub Crater

Big Red Couch Episode 111 – “We’re wearing fezzes, sunglasses, and it’s dark out. Hit It!”

It’s My Party And I’ll Cry If I Want To – Lesley Gore

The Blues Brothers
The 11th Doctor

Doctor Who Roleplaying Game
Fate Accelerated

Dan Ackroyd
Cinema Supercollider Episode 126: The Blues Brothers (1/2)
Cinema Supercollider Episode 127: The Blues Brothers (2/2)


Blues Brothers 2000

The 12th Doctor

Gen Con

The 5000 Fingers of Doctor T

Mr. T

Choux Pastry

Gary Gygax

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5 thoughts on “Episode One Hundred And Twelve – Volcano Day

  1. Tim Soholt says:

    In addition to being rich enough not to care what Ben thinks, Michael Crighton is also dead enough, since he passed away almost 10 years ago.

    • Ben says:

      That is more than sufficiently dead to disregard my hot takes. I’d be surprised that I hadn’t heard about his passing, except for the fact I knew little about him beyond his ubiquity in the sci-fi disaster sphere.

      I had no idea he wrote the novel of, and then scripted and directed The Train Robbery.

      He definitely had an appreciation of whatever technological boogeymen were troubling people.

    • Craig says:

      I think my favourite book of his was Eaters Of The Dead ( or “Eaters of the Dead: The Manuscript of Ibn Fadlan Relating His Experiences with the Northmen in AD 922” ), which eventually became the movie The Thirteenth Warrior.

      Thought I quite liked Timeline; Never saw the movie though.

      Holy Shit, he wrote & directed Runaway?

  2. Tim Soholt says:

    “Volcano Day” puts me in mind of the Groundhog Day-esque time loop-resetting-on-death episode that nearly every science fiction TV series does if it runs long enough. (Kind of like Jack the Ripper episodes.) This could be a mystery/puzzle adventure in a sufficiently gonzo enough time travel game; Doctor Who and Timewatch come immediately to mind.

    It could even be combined with the heist idea: There’s something valuable hidden somewhere in Pompeii, and we have a single day we can travel back to. Luckily, we can travel back there multiple times. Unluckily, each time we travel back we put more strain on the timeline; too many iterations and we could come back to a Nazi-dominated Earth, a Roman Empire-dominated Earth, or a cloud of loosely connected space debris . . .

    • Craig says:


      Me being me, I like the idea of keeping track of the where and when of the character’s movements, so that you can have the situation of “We need to cross this courtyard, but we’re already having lunch there, and having a drink while disguised as soldiers watching previous us have lunch and trying to see who stole the stun-gun, and pretending to work on that fountain while disguised as plumbers while waiting for soldier-us to get the hell out of the way so that we can get into the back room of the tavern”.

      Plus the knock-on consequences of timeline stress cause when you interrupt something which affected previous you, so suddenly you *didn’t* meet someone and didn’t get the information, …

      … wanders off to find streetmaps of Pompeii …

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