Edwer Thissell (ng_moonmoth) wrote,
Edwer Thissell

Background material for "In The Soup"

Very special thanks to ysabetwordsmith, who supplied me with a lot of background information as we began filling in blank spaces in mid-twentieth-century Terramagne global history, nudged a lot of my speculations in a direction consistent with their setting, and approved my additions to their canon. This work would not be nearly as detailed or coherent without their support. Thanks also for sharing many of the sheets for characters appearing in this demifiction.

There's a running email exchange where we worked up a lot more "public" (generally known in Terramagne) and "secret"; detail about the historical and current background to this piece, and deeper information about the characters I have created. Reader comments will encourage me to post some of it. If there's anything in particular you're interested in, please let me know in your comment.

Kraken contains an extensive communications division with many responsibilities. The most important one is a massive information management and disinformation campaign, which began very soon after Kraken began active operations. The campaign's primary function is to discourage and discredit investigations prompted by breaches of Kraken security.

Another ongoing disinformation project organized by the Kraken communications division is a continuing series of long-format mainstream media featuring activity surrounding scandalously wealthy French business leader Louis-Paul Cranquienne, who is bent on returning France to its position of European glory. He is CEO of Cranquienne SA, which is constantly up to whatever sort of no good is required to make an entertaining story. Something often "ripped from the headlines", thus the current emphasis on criminal zetetics based on the recent attacks by the Spectrum. His style is directly contrary to Kraken's: flashy, showy, splashes his name over everything, and way over the top. Operations are always noisy and visible.

Captain Left and Captain Right are the official titles of the people currently serving as Kraken commanders. When appearing in their titular roles, they wear their uniforms of state.
Both captains have a number of stunt doubles, who almost always appear for them as Captains Left and Right. This practice was adopted in anticipation of the omnipresent threat of takedown attempts directed at leaders of supervillain organizations, recognizing the disastrous consequences should the effort succeed.
Kraken's captains are also living symbols of the organization's foundational principle of redundancy: a successful single attack should never disable or destroy the system. Accordingly, Kraken captains hardly ever appear in their uniforms of state in spaces not secured and controlled by Kraken, and even then never both appear together.
Kraken membership is aware of this policy, and so expects a person wearing a uniform of state and looking like the appropriate captain to be a stunt double. However, they are careful to help maintain the façade by interacting with the double as though they were the captain. Failing to do so is viewed as constituting a security risk, and dealt with as appropriate.
Stunt doubles are from the communications division. They are always skilled actors, most often with Expert [+4] or Master [+6] Improv Skills, and typically with some form of leadership experience, as they may be required by events to perform as the actual Kraken leaders at any time. They are both familiar with a number of prepared scenarios that permit them to "go offstage" and hand the authority their uniforms represent back to the captains they portray.

Most Kraken officers wear a round black hat like this.
Kraken ship captains, base captains, and other commanding officers wear a round white hat like this. It marks the top of the local chain of command. If the senior officer usually in charge of a location is wearing a black hat, that means Captain Left and/or Captain Right is onsite.
Only Captain Left and Captain Right (or more typically, their stunt doubles) wear these magnificent gold-crested hats.

T-America has stringent surveillance laws, protecting individuals, even less savory ones like Crowe, from having their location, or activities they have reasonable expectation of privacy for, disclosed without their consent. Although "In The Soup" is not above occasionally playing fast and loose with these laws (they're supervillains, after all), the video in this sequence was shot by Crowe from one of his own security drones and posted online for reasons of his own. "In The Soup" snagged it from there.

The Centro de Detención para Superpodereros (“Superpowered (people) Detention Center”), the first prison in the world designed and constructed specifically to contain soups, was constructed by the Argentinian governent in the mid-1950s in response to an upsurge in overt soup activity. It is located in Puerto Argentino, on the Islas Malvinas, the name of which had been restored to the islands previously known as the Falklands after a 1953 plebiscite transferred sovereignty from Britain to Argentina. It has 285 beds in solitary and double cells, all with some form of what was hoped would be methods of suppressing superpower effects.

El Trece is one of the major Argentinian television networks. It has a particularly strong news division, and widely-watched newscasts.

ZMT Pty. Ltd. is an Australian corporation specializing in preemptive zetetic mitigation. Its being a Kraken operation is hidden from view in the usual fashion by several layers of ownership that pass through various tax haven countries.
Zetetic mitigation is the engineering discipline of designing and developing safeguards and procedures for zetetics research and development to reduce the likelihood of zetetic substances being released to the surrounding environment, and the range and severity of any leaks that do occur. The term “preemptive” is applied when the mitigation work is incorporated into the design and development of the experiment or manufacturing operation being performed, the specific zetetic substances involved and their characteristics are considered, and the safety procedures developed are implemented and practiced before operations begin.

Recreational vehicles are categorized by the frame on which the living quarters are built. Class C RVs like Kaleidosculptor's are built on a small truck frame. Check here (at least until it's sold) for an example vehicle of roughly the size and age of hers.

Erasure is the practice of a culture to ignore, remove, falsify, or reexplain evidence of a characteristic or identity claimed by a subset of its population. It is frequently employed to discredit or deny membership in the culture to the subset. Documented instances of identities that are erasure targets include: alternative sexualities from people of color (PoC); PoC from alternative sexualities; bisexual from other alternative sexualities.
Many narratives surrounding the 1969 Stonewall Riots have been subjected to erasure. (The Wikipedia page linked to above is one of a very few that even acknowledge that PoCs and trans women were part of the demonstration, let alone on the front line.) The upcoming movie presentation has been severely criticized by the QUILTBAG community for focusing its story on a cliché-ridden caricature of a white homosexual male and erasing or marginalizing many of the leaders of the demonstration.
Tags: demifiction, in the soup, polychrome heroics

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