Logline Jams - x2 Variations on Conflict / Crisis

Jam 1 - Random 6x Card: Modifier + Archetype + Conflict + Modifier + Archetype + Crisis

Session 1

Modifier + Character
Wily + Right Brain
Always right; people are sorted by their cognitive capabilities; Left brain gets hijacked.

Conflict
Body Swap
something has taken control of you; transcendental

Modifier + Character
Insecure + Mad Scientist
why is he mad? prove a point; disgraced; excommunicated; angry scientist; insecure because he’s often hacked; mommy issues; scientists are left-brainer (war between the hemispheres); sorting people by their brains is what we currently do in education (visual learners, dyslexics, etc); sorting brains for society; hacking brains (implants; enhance cognitive performance); social media has hacked our brains like a disease, reality is no longer something we can rely on - cult propaganda;

Crisis
Natural Disaster

Wily + Left Brain + Body Swap + Insecure + Mad Scientist + Natural Disaster

Synthesis: people sorted by their brains; brains augmented by technology; brains hacked (insecurity); all right-brains removed and archived; propaganda and control more effective; better managed society;

Logline Draft - To better control society, divergent & creative thinkers are considered dangerou. Brain hacking used to manipulate consent. Hive death (colony collapse) - lack of diversity means end of mankind.

Session 2

Modifier + Archetype
Devoted + Wise Fool
loyalty blinds them to their faults; blind devotion (faith) leads to destruction; accidental or studied foolishness… idiot savant (tremendous intellect on a narrow focus); prophet or religious leader, cult figure, who has to maintain illusion of being wise but is a fool - charlatan; love wants what it wants (I know this person is flawed but I love them anyway);

Conflict
Faustian Bargain
sacrifice others to maintain position, eliminate rival leader but live with repercussions; eagle and rat (DGW: I really got this wrong, it’s the “eagle and cat” from Sam Shepard) - feedback loop of mutual destruction; They know this will be the end of them but what can they do?

Modifier + Archetype
Slippery + Whiskey Priest
Are Priest and Fool rivals for the soul of the community? Both have an agenda that meets in the middle so they have to work together for the time being but will separate when done (allies of convenience);

Crisis
Dumpster Fire

Synthesis: Fool has to work with the devil (Priest) to get what they want but in doing so will compromise themselves, completely; they damn themselves but will save the community - self-sacrifice (hence, wise fool);

Jam 2 - Combos written by Jammers - Modifier + Archetype + Conflict + Modifier + Archetype + Crisis

We try a Face-Off approach to whittle down the options (aka “Fruit Machine” with nudges/swaps).

Session 1

Crisis
Worst thing ever

(1)Character Combo: Modifier + Archetype
Social Media Obsessed + Scientist

crunching numbers and seeing patterns in people’s posts; shadowy forces sharing details;

(2) Character Combo: Modifier + Archetype
Paranoid + Narcissist

Conflict
class conflict

(Swap) Conflict
Coverup

Paranoid narcissist president makes dubious social media posts but social scientist discovers alarming pattern to them;

deleted something (that scientist saw);

Situation with Cambridge Analytica, believed that the data they took was used to nefariously move hearts and minds; perhaps, that was overblown and they weren’t evil geniuses but there’s a recipe there for future problems;

social platforms have enormous amounts of data on the public that can be weaponized, nudge people towards a goal, radicalization;

What if facebook is not what we think it is? What if its intention is not to connect people. What if it exists for social engineering? They are not who they say they are; are they a rival intelligence operation? Used to implant spies - sleeper cells - but now you implant a social media platform into a society to move them from within; FB could be a rival intelligence agency;

What if FB is a Death Cult? Nihilistic intent; want society to degrade, fall apart and combust; hasten the end of empire; paranoid narcissist CEO says they want to remake country in their image, I’m going to cleanse society of the corruption, use my social media platform to hasten the end towards a rebirth;

Draft Logline: The largest social media platform is manipulating the public for a nefarious purpose. One of their data scientists discovers the true cause of their charismatic leader and risks their life and the fate of the free world to put things right.

Session 2

Conflict x2
Bad Mentor + Roommate from Hell

mentor who doesn’t give a crap or leads you astray; “Training Day” - they are nasty, pull you down to their level, damage you too;

(1) Character Combo
Zealous + Criminal

became this way because of a bad mentor; white collar crime starts of innocently and progresses by degrees until you are in too deep to refuse doing ‘the bigger favor’; let me turn you into a criminal; you start off as an accountant who ends up cooking the books and running lots of slush funds;

attempt to anchor the character: accountant at a Big Pharma.

heist movie - someone is being groomed to participate or is grooming by gathering the group; heist master; Robinhood; moral code, honor code (like mafia);

the zealous criminal - “I only do victimless crimes”; insurance fraud; everyone wants to work with this criminal but their code is so strict (don’t work weekends);

(2) Character Combo
Amoral + By the Book guy

If you follow the absolute letter of the law then you are a-moral;

Both of these characters are zealous and ‘religious’; one only does victimless crimes and the other has a very high bar; the odd-couple heist movie; escape driver and safe cracker that have absolute codes that conflict;

Heist story is a good anchor. Build the perfect team… “Oceans Eleven” with a bunch of misfits.

Thinking again of the Whiskey Priest - we’ve got to break into the religious complex to steal the whatever-it-is; not the usual heist; not a bank but a religious fortress; TV Evangelist castle; the subterfuge has to be different;

‘Jerry Falwell’ style Church-of-Everything. The team needs to go steal his bible because it has something important embedded in it. Comedy comes from high moral bar - can’t do this because it breaks this covenant; Bible… do it “by the book”; diverse group of religious backgrounds that use their various religious texts as guidance but have to work together - like, Jerusalem. Everybody has to work together but have completely opposite views - or, think they do until they bond.

Draft Logline: A diverse group of religious zealots need to band together to break into the Church of Everything and steal the leader’s bible in order to expose the whatever but they struggle to manage their idiosyncrasies.

Crisis x 2
Ticking Clock + “I don’t ever want to see you again”

If they don’t stop him before midnight he steals all the parish money and flees to Acapulco.

Post-Jam reflection…

It was good to use the prompts to come up with more specific ‘anchors’ that we use going forward.

Using 2x Conflicts and 2x Crises gave us nice options and helped discussion. Maybe using both gives more points versus either/or.

Having the other decks nearby - Genre, Tone, etc - would be nice to have at hand to use in a pinch.