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Name: Joe
Age: 41
[ profile] BigJoeShowtime
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Player Journal: smilespiderhatesyou

Full Name: Spider Jerusalem
Called By: Spider (his few friends), names too horrible to mention (his many enemies)
Age: Mid-30s/early 40s
Canon: Transmetropolitan (comic book), taken right after the events of Issue #12 ("Freeze Me With Your Kiss -- Part 3")
History: Spider was born and bred in "The City," a megalopolis in a future so distant that nanotech and genetic manipulation are commonplace, yet so close to the present that the United States still exists -- and still uses the Electoral College to elect the President. He grew up on the City's docks as an only child with drunken parents. His father drove a city bus and his mother was a housewife who cooked lizards for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day. Spider claims to have worked as a stripper when he was only 8 years old, and as a prostitute at some other unspecified point in in his early life. He has also hinted at his parents' growing madness, along with his early childhood ambitions, in unguarded moments -- "I wanted to be a sniper when I grew up. Didn't everyone?" -- but such moments are rare.

Spider's adult past is not well known, however Mitchell Royce (Spider's oldest friend and current boss) and Spider himself have referred to past memorable incidents such as the enfant terrible (a headless French child assassin from the Anglo/Franco war) and the "Prague telephone incident" in which Spider, using only a phone, caused six Czech politicians to commit suicide.

Soon after the election of the current President -- a Richard-Nixon analogue only referred to by Spider as "The Beast" -- Spider's growing fame and visibility made it increasingly difficult for him to write. Feeling insulated from the streets and its people, Spider ultimately fled the City for a compound in the mountains, where he spent five years living as a virtual hermit. His self-imposed exile came to an end when his publishers tracked him down and threatened him with legal action. Apparently they had given him a substantial advance to write a series of books, and Spider had literally taken the money and run without completing the contracted writings. Reluctantly, he returned to The City to complete the books, and took up work for an urban newspaper (run by his old colleague Mitchell Royce) to support said writing. Since then he has done his level best to mess with the establishment, piss off religious and political figures, and drive his assistants mad. In short, Spider is back in The City.

Personality: Above all else, Spider is a firm believer in the truth and delivering it to his readers in the most direct and blunt manner possible; he often capitalizes it as "The Truth" in his writing for emphasis. This is most notable when Spider's editor recounts the tale of how Spider submitted an article on the election of The Beast as President, an article which consisted of the word "fuck" repeated eight thousand times. Although he opposed The Beast, Spider is not loyal to any political party or organization. He is also an avowed and often virulent atheist who opposes all organized religion, which he sees as little more than unworthy authority figures that exploit their members. It is therefore both amazingly illustrative and interestingly ironic when Spider travels to a religious convention and begins upending tables and destroying booths while wearing an improvised robe, a reference to Jesus throwing the money lenders out of the Temple.

The primary focus of conflict within Spider's psyche is a combination of concern for his delivery of "The Truth" and misanthropy towards his public. Spider hates and struggles against authority figures who oppress others, but he is also bitter toward the uninvolved public whose apathy gives the authority its power. Likewise, he struggles to convince the public to listen to The Truth, but is disgusted by those who blindly accept what he reports. In addition, Spider's talents earn him unwanted fame and adoration, which clouds his ability to "get at The Truth", often resulting in him experiencing writers block and depression. It has often been thought by some that Spider needs to be hated in order to function as a writer and journalist.

Another aspect of Spider's psychological makeup can be seen in his weapon of choice: a nasty but non-lethal weapon known as a "bowel disruptor," which causes instant and painful loss of bowel control. The weapon has settings that allow Spider to vary the level of pain and discomfort, ranging from simple loose, watery, diarrhea to complete rectal prolapse. Often times the victim has a bowel movement so dramatic and agonizing that it induces unconsciousness. Spider prefers this weapon because, despite being illegal, it is (usually) non-lethal and its effects are untraceable. This last characteristic came in handy for Spider when he encountered "The Beast" alone in a public restroom and promptly used the Bowel Disruptor on him.

On a few occasions, he has been known to carry lethal firearms, though according to Spider, he only carries such weapons in emergency cases. Spider is a competent gunfighter, having learned his skills in "places you never want to go." In fact, according to him he has killed sixteen people, all but one in self-defense.

Regardless of whether or not he is armed, Spider is shown to be a surprisingly capable, though not invincible, fighter. He frequently lashes out violently at those who threaten or aggravate him, and his ferocity often allows him to defeat opponents who are well-trained or much more imposing physically. He is also not averse to brutalizing people in order to get crucial information. He often uses improvised weapons to gain the upper hand - for example, putting his cigarette out in the eye of a guard or beating Fred Christ with a broken chair leg, which he dubbed "The Chair Leg of Truth."

One of Spider's most apparent character traits is his heavy drug use, which he makes no attempt to conceal. In addition to being a chain smoker and heavy drinker, Spider uses an extensive and bewildering variety of drugs ranging from mild stimulants, intellect enhancers, and mood-altering drugs to cocaine, heroin and rare, exotic, futuristic drugs. Spider is well known for his foul language, especially when combining the word "fuck" with other words to make new and amusing insults. Spider is easily angered, his displays of temper ranging from mild verbal outbursts to violent physical assault. However, despite his temper and contempt for the City as a whole, Spider is often seen to treat innocents (particularly children) with kindness and care. Spider is also quite loyal to those few who he considers friends and is equally quick to hurt those who would betray him. More than one friend has described him as "a dirty bastard and a moral vacuum, but you couldn't ask for a better friend."

3 Interesting Character Facts:
1) Spider's mismatched sunglasses (one round red lens, one narrow rectangular green lens) contain a hidden HD camera, capable of storing thousands of pictures. It is programmed to start taking pictures if it is subject to violent movement (such as Spider being attacked).
2) Spider was actually married once. His ex-wife's head is cryogenically frozen, at her request, with specific instructions that she is only to be revived when there is clear proof that he is permanently and irrevocably dead.
3) Spider has (unbeknownst to him) contracted a rare degenerative neurological disorder brought on by repeated exposure to "information pollen," a banned means of transmitting data that sometimes carries serious side effects. The condidtion is believed to be incurable, and is progressive in all but 1% of known cases. He has not shown any symptoms yet.
Powers: Spider is an ordinary human for his time. This means that (due to the advanced medical technology of his City) he is either resistant or immune to ordinary human diseases, including most forms of cancer.
Special Skills: Spider is a more than-competent gunfighter (as mentioned above), a decent (but not an expert) computer hacker, and a master at investigation and gathering information. Oh yeah, and he's an unparalleled journalist and writer. Just ask him; he'll tell you.
What is your character's comm icon and why? Spider's symbol is a three-eyed "have-a-nice-day" button; it is the symbol of the Transient Movement, a group of young people in The City who wanted to change their species by combining alien DNA with their own. This got them stomped on by the police, and it was Spider's on-the-spot reporting that prevented the cops from killing every one of them.

Pet Name: Spider has never called her anything but "Cat" or "The Cat"
Size: Normal housecat size
Description: Isn't she precious?
Personality: The Cat is meaner than a junkyard dog (and could kick its ass in two out of three falls). When Spider found her on the doorstep of his new apartment she was half-dead and half-crazed with fear, but she had survived years on the streets of the City. Now nursed back to health, she is more dangerous than ever. She is the Cat Who Walks By Herself, and All Places Are ALike to Her. And of you don't like that, she'll scratch your face off.
Special Abilities: She has comically bad timing, in the "oh no, not you, not now" sense. She likes it that way. Like her person (don't dare call Spider her "owner") she is ruthless and unrelenting when cornered, capable of taking on wild animals twice her size and kicking their asses six ways to Sunday.
Anything Else?: She smokes unfiltered black Russian cigarettes when she can get them.

These are in a separate post to conserve space.


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June 2013


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