Okay a lot of you who read these posts know that I am collecting as many Ram-Man action figures as I can in order to affect their price in the economy and make them rare. However only a few of you know that I am in part doing this because my of my obsession with the idea of an apocalypse. You're thinking, as most do when I try to explain this to people, I'm only saying this just so I can talk about apocalyptica* (yes I made up a word) and there is no connection, well let me explain...
In my mind Ram-Man is equal to gold. Gold just has more people believing its worth money. As much as gold is coveted and given a value, in many ways that's above money (in economies that collapse gold is often exchanged rather than currency), in apocalypse there is no need for it. When the world collapses you won't all be running for gold or Ram-Man to fill your house with, you will be filling it with water, food and fuel. It is this turning point between worth and worthlessness I just love, and it is only ever really crystallized in an apocalypse.
All this has meant that a very good upside to my research in the economy has been looking at apocalyptic books, films, and comics giving a particular keen eye on currency. I am going to start writing reviews of what I have seen, so if you're keen on all these things stay tuned for some rare beauties. For now, I will leave you with a run down of the great new currencies for the end of the world (in no particular order; apocalyptic top ten soon, I promise).
Jericho (TV series)
Kevin Costner can't catch a break from some people, but in my house he is a movie god. In this world of water made by the melting of polar ice caps, there are two main currencies: soil and paper. I love this because paper and books don't mix well with water thus causing scarcity and making them a commodity. Soil is kind of the same; in a world with only water, you would need soil to make things grow. Trouble is in a world of water there arent may places to use the soil to make things grow so I think eventually diets would change to being mainly fish based, and soil would be traded as a currency more like our coins – they would still have value but for exchanging and not using as soil.
The Postman (film)
My favourite of all the currencies and another Kevin Costner film. I don't want to spoil the film too much if you have not seen it (lets face it, not a lot of you have because it was slated) but I'm going out there and saying this is my favourite film of all time so I watch and enjoy how powerful a real worthwhile currency can be – that can be used and valued and passed on with an equal,decreasing or greater value.
Mad Max (trilogy of films)
What a film! Made when Mel Gibson wasn't mad. This trilogy is based in a world where the shit has hit the fan, leaving the law struggling to keep its grasp. Going by the trilogy, it's based on getting control of gasoline. You got the gas: you got the power. With the high powered cars being driven in this film, gas is getting more valuable by the minute. Each film has its own slant on this system but throughout power = Power.
Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas (video game)
I love this game! It ticked all of my apocalyptic boxes: epic RPG with upgrades, huge amount of side missions, and unique currency. On top of all that in a way playing it was work! Heaven.
The world has been brought to its knees (yep you guessed it) by a nuclear attack. In the game, the currency has become bottle caps. In so many ways its a great currency - already scarce, not easy to forge, easy to carry, and a non-increasing supply since in this world almost everything is blown up. If you have not played it yet, do.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy? (book/TV/film)
Why the question mark? To be honest the following currency I think I saw in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy but haven't seen/read it since so it might not be. Anyway its mentioned upon landing on the new earth that they have created a new currency: leaves. Instead of people scrabbling for something scarce and not easily replenish-able like gasoline or salt, using leaves means everyone is a millionaire, the only problem being now everyone is so rich the leaves are essentially worthless. The government then decided to start immediately to rectify the situation by a massive de-forestation effort. Great.
More apocalyptic goodness soon.
* The theories, mythology and paraphernalia surrounding the idea of an apocalypse
Don’t forget to check the reason for this blog post. It’s our project; mine (Jamie Moakes), and Ram-Man's we are taking on the economy, click here to find out more.
Apocalyptica and RAM-MAN
HE-MAN morals EP7-12
Ram-man is stolen
Moralistic TV shows taught me life.
Do you want my bike's autograph?
@pulse fringe festival
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