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Grahamon

Monkey Island 3a kickstarter

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SurplusGamer your logic is so cold that it has created a wall of ice around your heart that doesn't let the magic and wonder get in.

Maybe if we all concentrate and think really really hard on how much we want another Monkey Island 3 and if we all hum the Monkey Island theme together then maybe, just maybe, mr Lucas will be so touched that he will hand the IP and a a dozen million dollars to mr Gilbert and everything will be magical and little elves and lollipops.

Obscure, I know you're being a little facetious, but still, let's be clear because I don't want people to think I'm just here to rain on their parade: I'm an optimist. I like the world, I think it's an amazing place where I think incredible things happen. Lots of cool things have happened in my life and I tend to think that there are lots of awesome things to come. I am intensely fascinated by the capability that we've developed as humans to make the most amazing things and discover the strangest and most wonderful things about the world, and I hope that I'm around for a long, LONG time to come just to enjoy the ride and see what comes next - and take part if I can.

I hate cynicism in all its forms, and try to say yes to opportunities that present themselves, but I LOVE skepticism. It grounds my optimism in a little pragmatism, gives it direction, and enables me to have that sense of magic and wonder without letting myself be fooled into banking on fantasies and myths.

Back on topic, I just feel like it's my duty to point out the myriad reasons why this is unlikely to be a possibility any time soon, and also question whether it's necessarily a good idea in the first place. People can, of course, take it how they will :)

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Hey I'm an optimist too! I just think that Ron Gilbert working on something fresh that would potentially be as exciting as Monkey Island was in its time is far more likely to result in cool and awesome things than having him bound forever working on the same 20 year old concept.

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The Cave is an even older concept! Ideas can be equally good fresh or aged like a fine wine.

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A wine might be getting better with age but once the bottle opens it has to be consumed soon or it will start deteriorating.

You will find that a wine from a bottle opened decades ago is far from being fine anymore.

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Hey guys! Just a slight change of topic here;

I would be curious to see your opinions about, IF there was to be a new Monkey Island 3 by Ron Gilbert, would you still like to hear Dominic Armato as the voice of Guybrush....? I mean Dominic has been THE perfect voice for Guybrush and became an iconic figure to Monkey Island fans over the years, but I would still have to say No to him.

Simply because his character reminds us too much of Curse, and other titles that followed, games that people would not consider to be a part of the "original" Monkey Islands.

My suggestion would be a voice that's maybe better suited with the darker theme of Monkey Island that was Ron's original vision.

...or just don't have voices at all, that would be the ultimate old-school adventure game :D

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Hey guys! Just a slight change of topic here;

I would be curious to see your opinions about, IF there was to be a new Monkey Island 3 by Ron Gilbert, would you still like to hear Dominic Armato as the voice of Guybrush....? I mean Dominic has been THE perfect voice for Guybrush and became an iconic figure to Monkey Island fans over the years, but I would still have to say No to him.

Simply because his character reminds us too much of Curse, and other titles that followed, games that people would not consider to be a part of the "original" Monkey Islands.

My suggestion would be a voice that's maybe better suited with the darker theme of Monkey Island that was Ron's original vision.

...or just don't have voices at all, that would be the ultimate old-school adventure game :D

I can't imagine anyone but Dominic voicing Guybrush. I think he fits the role very well, and it's great to have a voice actor that's really passionate about his work. He was a huge fan of Monkey Island before he ever got the job of voicing Guybrush.

I'd actually feel bad for him if he was ever denied the role. It's obvious in interviews with him just how attached he is to the character of Guybrush.

Also, I'll have to dig up the particular interview where he talked about this, but a few years ago (I think around the time ToMI and SoMI:SE was coming out) Dominic got to meet Ron for the first time at PAX, and he himself was actually concerned with how Ron felt about his portrayal of Guybrush, and apparently Ron was pleased with Dominic's performance.

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I wonder if Ron had a kind of voice in mind when he thought up Guybrush? I hope it'd be his call.

Personally, I thought Dominic's voice really fit the look of Curse's Guybrush, and that he did a good job with the special editions too!

Though I always imagined a slightly tougher sounding voice when I played the originals. Like Harrison Ford or something.

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Thanks for that input Syd, it's the first time I've heard that story about Dominic. Well, I suppose if Ron's approved of Dominic, then we'll have to do the same. :)

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So there's new news on this, with this new interview with Ron where he basically restates:

- He'd like to do a Monkey Island 3

- He would only do it if he could buy the IP outright, he doesn't want a licensing deal (like the deal with LucasArts/Telltale)

- He reckons it'd cost him $100 million to do it.

That's not kickstarter money, obviously. Sadly for some LucasArts are within their rights to hoard IP even if we can see it could be put to better use. And it's an understandable position - it's rarely a smart move to give up the IP rights to a beloved franchise.

Personally, I'm just starting to think Ron's misguided on this one. He's making The Cave which is looking awesome, and he could do so many other awesome things. There have been more Monkey Island games that he didn't directly work on now than ones that he did, he's already talked about how different he is as a designer now to how he was and I feel like maybe it's time to let it go. I'm not saying that I'm not curious about how it'd turn out, but I'm also not super keen on essentially retconning three games (two of which I liked a lot) in order to let him have his way with it.

http://www.gamestm.co.uk/discuss/ron-gilbert-maybe-i-should-start-a-kickstarter-for-a-hundred-million-dollars-to-buy-monkey-island/

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Also, to be fair, Dave Grossman is creative director at Telltale, and he was a writer/designer on the games too, let's not forget. So that could be one reason. Another reason could be that Telltale is full of ex. LucasArts employees and is known to hire people who have been active in the LucasArts fan community. They also worked on a franchise which LucasArts had worked on in the past in the same genre, in the form of Sam and Max. They also have a track record of working with existing franchises to make profitable episodic adventure games. So that might be some of the reasons why they'd license it to someone who isn't Ron & Tim. ;)

That's like shining a Robin signal into the sky when you're in trouble. Also, the word 'franchise' was forged in the fires of hell.

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So there's new news on this, with this new interview with Ron where he basically restates:

- He'd like to do a Monkey Island 3

- He would only do it if he could buy the IP outright, he doesn't want a licensing deal (like the deal with LucasArts/Telltale)

- He reckons it'd cost him $100 million to do it.

That's not kickstarter money, obviously. Sadly for some LucasArts are within their rights to hoard IP even if we can see it could be put to better use. And it's an understandable position - it's rarely a smart move to give up the IP rights to a beloved franchise.

Personally, I'm just starting to think Ron's misguided on this one. He's making The Cave which is looking awesome, and he could do so many other awesome things. There have been more Monkey Island games that he didn't directly work on now than ones that he did, he's already talked about how different he is as a designer now to how he was and I feel like maybe it's time to let it go. I'm not saying that I'm not curious about how it'd turn out, but I'm also not super keen on essentially retconning three games (two of which I liked a lot) in order to let him have his way with it.

http://www.gamestm.co.uk/discuss/ron-gilbert-maybe-i-should-start-a-kickstarter-for-a-hundred-million-dollars-to-buy-monkey-island/

Oh, I didn't see your new post!

Lucasarts may be intellectual hoarders, but they aren't made of stone. If they have an ounce of decency, they would sell Ron the rights for whatever sum he can raise through a kickstarter. Or licence it with complete creative control? I maintain that he has more right to it than them.

The other sequels can handle a bit of retconning. Curse will stand up just fine as an alternate take. Anyway, that's where franchising gets you. Just say no to franchising, kids.

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There have been more Monkey Island games that he didn't directly work on now than ones that he did, he's already talked about how different he is as a designer now to how he was and I feel like maybe it's time to let it go. I'm not saying that I'm not curious about how it'd turn out, but I'm also not super keen on essentially retconning three games (two of which I liked a lot) in order to let him have his way with it.

I disagree, we still do not know the Secret of Monkey island.

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Oh, I didn't see your new post!

Lucasarts may be intellectual hoarders, but they aren't made of stone. If they have an ounce of decency, they would sell Ron the rights for whatever sum he can raise through a kickstarter. Or licence it with complete creative control? I maintain that he has more right to it than them.

The other sequels can handle a bit of retconning. Curse will stand up just fine as an alternate take. Anyway, that's where franchising gets you. Just say no to franchising, kids.

There's absolutely no way LucasArts would let go of Monkey Island for anything less than an absolutely insane amount of money. The only way the rights could be pried from their hands for anything less would be if they were dying, and as stubborn as they are about their IPs, I have a feeling that they still wouldn't budge much, even in their death-throes.

Think of it this way: What if, through some crazy way, adventure games became insanely profitable again? LucasArts would be in an extremely good position having the rights to one of the greatest adventure game series ever, and all they had to do was sit on it. That alone is enough incentive for them to not give it up easily.

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Oh, I didn't see your new post!

Lucasarts may be intellectual hoarders, but they aren't made of stone. If they have an ounce of decency, they would sell Ron the rights for whatever sum he can raise through a kickstarter. Or licence it with complete creative control? I maintain that he has more right to it than them.

The other sequels can handle a bit of retconning. Curse will stand up just fine as an alternate take. Anyway, that's where franchising gets you. Just say no to franchising, kids.

There's absolutely no way LucasArts would let go of Monkey Island for anything less than an absolutely insane amount of money. The only way the rights could be pried from their hands for anything less would be if they were dying, and as stubborn as they are about their IPs, I have a feeling that they still wouldn't budge much, even in their death-throes.

Think of it this way: What if, through some crazy way, adventure games became insanely profitable again? LucasArts would be in an extremely good position having the rights to one of the greatest adventure game series ever, and all they had to do was sit on it. That alone is enough incentive for them to not give it up easily.

Not to mention that no business in their right mind would be willing to sell rights for 'whatever a guy is able to raise on kickstarter'. That would be an absolutely insanely irresponsible thing to do, selling IP for 'whatever' when they've just spent millions on a MMO that is going free to play, are working on relatively high risk big-budget new Star Wars titles (star wars doesn't guarantee profits, especially launching a new franchise within the universe) and have recently had a profitable working relationship with Telltale Games with this IP, and also some success with the special editions.

We can argue about whether it's 'right' or not for LucasArts to hoard rights. I think it's really up to them, and I absolutely disagree that Ron has more right to it than they do, that's an emotional argument and not a logical one. Sorry to repeat myself, but Ron conceived Monkey Island as a LucasArts employee, and he most certainly didn't do it alone.

To weave his vital but still partial contribution into an argument that LucasArts should just hand over the rights as a matter of principle is painfully simplistic. It also does a disservice to the company that gave Ron the creative space and the excellent team that helped him bring his vision to life. They may not be the same company now, by a long shot, but what are we saying, they shouldn't have the rights because we don't like them any more?

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There's absolutely no way LucasArts would let go of Monkey Island for anything less than an absolutely insane amount of money. The only way the rights could be pried from their hands for anything less would be if they were dying, and as stubborn as they are about their IPs, I have a feeling that they still wouldn't budge much, even in their death-throes.

Think of it this way: What if, through some crazy way, adventure games became insanely profitable again? LucasArts would be in an extremely good position having the rights to one of the greatest adventure game series ever, and all they had to do was sit on it. That alone is enough incentive for them to not give it up easily.

The logic of clinging onto someone else's ideas as "IP" fails on its own terms. It's like stuffing a bird of paradise into a cage and being surprised when it doesn't sing any more. Creativity needs nurturing and freedom to flourish. And when it flourishes, everyone benefits.

If George Lucas isn't struggling to pay his bills, why chase absolutely insane amounts of money just for the sake of it? If he got another several million for the rights on top of all the profits he's already made, that's sounds like a very fair deal for his company's contributions.

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There's absolutely no way LucasArts would let go of Monkey Island for anything less than an absolutely insane amount of money. The only way the rights could be pried from their hands for anything less would be if they were dying, and as stubborn as they are about their IPs, I have a feeling that they still wouldn't budge much, even in their death-throes.

Think of it this way: What if, through some crazy way, adventure games became insanely profitable again? LucasArts would be in an extremely good position having the rights to one of the greatest adventure game series ever, and all they had to do was sit on it. That alone is enough incentive for them to not give it up easily.

The logic of clinging onto someone else's ideas as "IP" fails on its own terms. It's like stuffing a bird of paradise into a cage and being surprised when it doesn't sing any more. Creativity needs nurturing and freedom to flourish. And when it flourishes, everyone benefits.

If George Lucas isn't struggling to pay his bills, why chase absolutely insane amounts of money just for the sake of it? If he got another several million for the rights on top of all the profits he's already made, that's sounds like a very fair deal for his company's contributions.

Did you miss my whole bit about how game publishers - ALL large game publishers, including LucasArts - RELY on chasing insane amounts of money with long bets in order to fund the next cycle? If they didn't chase insane amounts of money then... what happens next time someone pitches them to fund their $50 million budget game?

I like your ideals and I love that you're passionate about creativity - I am, too - but you really have to ground this in some sort of practical understanding because otherwise it's just naivety. You simplify this entire thing to the point where it hardly even resembles the reality of what went into creating Monkey Island in the first place, let alone how a publisher might reasonably be expected to act.

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Did you miss my whole bit about how game publishers - ALL large game publishers, including LucasArts - RELY on chasing insane amounts of money with long bets in order to fund the next cycle? If they didn't chase insane amounts of money then... what happens next time someone pitches them to fund their $50 million budget game?

I like your ideals and I love that you're passionate about creativity - I am, too - but you really have to ground this in some sort of practical understanding because otherwise it's just naivety. You simplify this entire thing to the point where it hardly even resembles the reality of what went into creating Monkey Island in the first place, let alone how a publisher might reasonably be expected to act.

Wow, I just read that the budget for the last Star Wars game was $200 million! but I also read that a million subscribers to the game, which they have more than, brings in $180 million profit every year. Yes it's a massive investment and a risk, but they're swimming in money. I bet they could retire now and live comfortably for the rest of their lives.

Ron's not even asking for money. He's asking to be allowed to pay millions to millionaires to buy his own ideas. How is that too much to ask?

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your spirit could be admirable but unfortunately Grahamon, the real world doesn't function like a Disney movie.

No big company will give away a property even if that's the 'decent thing to do' because, if nothing else, people who run these companies are a bunch of greedy old geezers.

Maybe next Christmas we could send three ghosts to Lucas... that might do the trick.

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Did you miss my whole bit about how game publishers - ALL large game publishers, including LucasArts - RELY on chasing insane amounts of money with long bets in order to fund the next cycle? If they didn't chase insane amounts of money then... what happens next time someone pitches them to fund their $50 million budget game?

I like your ideals and I love that you're passionate about creativity - I am, too - but you really have to ground this in some sort of practical understanding because otherwise it's just naivety. You simplify this entire thing to the point where it hardly even resembles the reality of what went into creating Monkey Island in the first place, let alone how a publisher might reasonably be expected to act.

Wow, I just read that the budget for the last Star Wars game was $200 million! but I also read that a million subscribers to the game, which they have more than, brings in $180 million profit every year. Yes it's a massive investment and a risk, but they're swimming in money. I bet they could retire now and live comfortably for the rest of their lives.

Ron's not even asking for money. He's asking to be allowed to pay millions to millionaires to buy his own ideas. How is that too much to ask?

If those profit margins are so tasty for subscriptions, how is it that they're moving to a free to play model within mere months of launch? Seems like they might not be so swimming in money as you may imagine. It's ALWAYS more complicated than you think.

"I bet they could retire now and live comfortably for the rest of their lives." is a highly silly thing to say. Maybe they could (whoever 'they' is), but they're not trying to earn quittin' money, they're aiming to run a sustainable business, and to be sustainable in publishing you need to make not just a profit, but enough profit to re-invest into the next lot of games that you hope to make you the next lot of profit. It's not like, say, a bakery where you just need enough money to buy the stuff to make the goods and pay the staff and you're fine. Or it is, but in this case the 'stuff' you need to buy is the funding for future games, which as often as not will not make as much money back as it cost to make.

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“Three Rules of Work: Out of clutter find simplicity; From discord find harmony; In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” - Albert Einstein

http://www.destructoid.com/battlefront-3-killed-by-psychopaths-at-lucasarts-227066.phtml

Ultimately, George Lucas is in charge of the company. I don't believe he started it to be a profit monster. It's not Disney-like or naive to challenge purely financial thinking.. the real world is what we make of it! Then after this, we can move on to world peace.

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“Three Rules of Work: Out of clutter find simplicity; From discord find harmony; In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” - Albert Einstein

http://www.destructoid.com/battlefront-3-killed-by-psychopaths-at-lucasarts-227066.phtml

Ultimately, George Lucas is in charge of the company. I don't believe he started it to be a profit monster. It's not Disney-like or naive to challenge purely financial thinking.. the real world is what we make of it! Then after this, we can move on to world peace.

I just find it hard to take what you're saying seriously when whenever I lay out some facts, you come back with platitudes that, while not completely wrongheaded, fail to do anything to help us understand how this could actually work in any practical sense. When Einstein said that wonderful quote it was not to advocate oversimplification of complex things it was talking about making sense of complexity in an elegant way. What you're doing is denying the complexity is there in the first place, or at least studiously ignoring it.

I'm sorry, I genuinely wish that games only cost a little amount of money to make so that publishers wouldn't have to chase megahits in order to sustain their business, but that's where we are - and that's why we're so very lucky that the marketplace has changed so much later to allow smaller developers to find a niche. But it just IS naive to think it plausible that a company working in this industry would, could, or should just blithely hand over rights to a series that has been very active over the last three years: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monkey_Island_(series)#Media

And you still haven't given a satisfactory answer as to why you think LucasArts have no right to the creation when they:

1) Paid Ron to make it for them

2) Gave Ron the team that did such an awesome job in making it a great game, rather than just an idea in his head

3) Have continued to support the series after Ron's departure, bringing out 3 new entries, and bringing the old games to several new platforms (the lull of several years after EMI notwithstanding)

You like creativity? Well what about all those creatives at LucasArts and beyond who have done an awesome (and sometimes not so awesome) job of keeping the series alive? Why does only Ron's creativity count?

Anyway, I feel like I'm talking in circles here so I think I'll (try to) bow out unless anything new is said. I don't mean to constantly be at you about this; I think it's a great attitude to have to have a 'yes' approach to problems and a sense of optimism. I'm not against that in the slightest, and I very much share that despite how much our views on this differ. But without critical thinking all it is is a feeling that you have.

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Ok,

I don't think that Lucasarts have no right to creation, just that Ron also has a right. But is there anyone from the original development team or management at the time who is still actually there at Lucasarts to benefit from the IP ownership? (I don't know, but I get the impression that most of them have since left). The president responsible for the recent Monkey Island revival is now gone, apparently with a whole group of other executives, and George Lucas is in semi-retirement with a fortune of $3.2 billion! Is it the new executives' right? The shareholders?

Even still, they don't have to sell, right? But if they want to stick to huge-budgets and huge sales, then adventure games are not so much use to them. Star Wars is bigger and more profitable. In which case, why not sell it?

If they do want to use the IP, it wouldn't make sense for them to ignore a request from Ron, and a mob of supporters to license him to make one with full creative control. And again, if they don't want to fund it, it wouldn't hurt them one bit to allow Ron to fund it himself with a kickstarter, or undo any of the work he was paid to do, or the fact that they have already profited greatly from his work.

Perhaps the only way Ron could buy it, is if George takes notice and decides to sell it for something affordable, out of respect for Ron, because he can. And why not? I understand why he might be very protective over Star Wars, but as rich as he is, I don't understand why he'd be that way about Monkey Island..

I hope my response is meaty and facty enough!

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Ok,

I don't think that Lucasarts have no right to creation, just that Ron also has a right. But is there anyone from the original development team or management at the time who is still actually there at Lucasarts to benefit from the IP ownership? (I don't know, but I get the impression that most of them have since left). The president responsible for the recent Monkey Island revival is now gone, apparently with a whole group of other executives, and George Lucas is in semi-retirement with a fortune of $3.2 billion! Is it the new executives' right? The shareholders?

Even still, they don't have to sell, right? But if they want to stick to huge-budgets and huge sales, then adventure games are not so much use to them. Star Wars is bigger and more profitable. In which case, why not sell it?

If they do want to use the IP, it wouldn't make sense for them to ignore a request from Ron, and a mob of supporters to license him to make one with full creative control. And again, if they don't want to fund it, it wouldn't hurt them one bit to allow Ron to fund it himself with a kickstarter, or undo any of the work he was paid to do, or the fact that they have already profited greatly from his work.

Perhaps the only way Ron could buy it, is if George takes notice and decides to sell it for something affordable, out of respect for Ron, because he can. And why not? I understand why he might be very protective over Star Wars, but as rich as he is, I don't understand why he'd be that way about Monkey Island..

I hope my response is meaty and facty enough!

Well, I'll try to be brief since I wasn't going to do this but:

1) Lucasarts is a privately held company... no shareholders.

2) Surely I don't need to explain how problematic and crazy it would be for a company to only have the right to its properties as long as the people who originally made them are still working there.

3) The rest isn't the craziest thing you've ever said ;) but... it's really up to LucasArts to choose how they conduct their business, and as a business they are not known to give away IP. That's not unusual: Double Fine has exactly the same policy to not give up their IP whenever possible. Could they survive without Monkey Island? Very likely! But it's a game that still gets decent sales and unlike the Star Wars games costs less to work with, do there's no incentive to let go. Yes, they mainly want to chase the big profits, but why on earth would they let go of a beloved franchise which doesn't cost very much to keep ticking over? That's a very rare thing to have.

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Every last thing SurplusGamer said in this thread is correct. I am marveling at all of the correctness.

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I haven't followed this thread completely, but it made me think of a funny kickstarter...

Who here would pay to just hear Ron Gilbert's story ideas for Monkey Island 3?

I would pledge between $100 to $200, just to hear him finally reveal the secret and explain his ideas for the Monkey Island Trilogy and put the whole secret and theories about TSOMI3 to rest.

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Once upon a time, there was a genetically modified pig eating genetically modified soy beans. Suddenly, the pig, called Henrietta, had an existential epiphany. "Woah!", she said "Independent self is an illusion! These wonderful beans and I only exist relatively to one another, and we are part of one and the same infinite, conscious universe." While gathering her astonishment at this new sensation, Henrietta noticed a tiny door in a corner of the barn she'd never seen before. She took a single step. Farmer Bob appeared, axe in hand. His authoritive, yet dulcet voice chimed "No, my dear Henrietta. Forget your hippy nonsense. You and the beans are intellectual property, and this story is clearly going nowhere"

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