2012-08-14

fiver: (following the river of death downstream)
[personal profile] fiver2012-08-14 11:36 pm
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background

CONCEPTS IN COSMIC HORROR
The insignificance of humanity. The human race is ultimately meaningless against the vast backdrop of indifferent cosmic forces far beyond our comprehension.
The unknowability of the universe. We cannot ever hope to understand the ultimate workings of nature. If we try, we will go mad.
The existence of terror and madness just below the surface of ordinary life. Normalcy is just a shell over the true dark nature of reality.
Isolation and despair. The outlook for both individuals and humanity is bleak and detached.

ELEMENTS IN COSMIC HORROR
Incomprehensible monsters (often with tentacles)
Bizarre, non-Euclidean, surreal landscapes and architecture
Dangerous beings inherently inimical to humanity lurking just beyond our world
Ancient ruins hiding doomed civilizations
Unfathomable stretches of time or space
Going mad from the revelation!!

CREATORS WHO USE ELEMENTS OF COSMIC HORROR
Stephen King
Although the morality in King's work is usually too clear for it to be true cosmic horror, there's a definite element of the genre in works such as It which feature incomprehensible, horrifying antagonists with inscrutable but terrible motives. The multiverse of the Dark Tower series and related stories, for example, is too purposeful and guided by forces of light to be cosmic horror, but the Crimson King resembles a Lovecraftian elder god in his unexplained destructiveness and unfathomability to humans.
Terry Pratchett
Discworld frequently and consciously parodies Lovecraft in the early books, but serious elements of cosmic horror crop up in later ones as well. Things like the Hiver in A Hat Full of Sky and the Summoning Dark in Thud! are very much in this camp with their ancient, implacable inhumanity.
Junji Ito
This mangaka cites Lovecraft as one of his influences. It definitely shows in Uzumaki. The spiral force that possesses Kurouzu-cho could easily be a slightly more psychological version of one of Lovecraft's nightmare aliens; it's that unknowable, ancient, and unstoppable.

[ THIS POST IS A WORK IN PROGRESS ]
fiver: (ohgod why;;;)
[personal profile] fiver2012-08-14 11:37 pm
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rules

ONE] Keep your posts reasonably on topic. That doesn't mean they all have to be serious and grimdark--crack, perverted smut, and morbid humor are all permitted--but they should relate to cosmic horror as a genre, specifically that pioneered by H.P. Lovecraft. See here for a (partial!) list of Lovecraftian concepts and works and creators influenced by his variety of horror.
TWO] There will be disturbing things here. Please be prepared for dark themes (such as death, injury, trauma, and also the apocalypse and the ensuing bleak and meaningless long dark night of reality) when you roleplay in this community. You will not be required to warn specifically for that kind of disturbing material; it should be taken as a given that it may occur here. However, posts expected to contain sexual content of any kind must be clearly labeled with the relevant warnings. So should threads that veer in that direction in posts that are not themselves so labeled.
THREE] Don't drag inappropriate real-world subjects into roleplay here. I know I just said that there'll be disturbing stuff here, but that's not what I mean this time. I'm talking about using real-world disasters or other tragic events as springboards for roleplay (I don't care if you think it's clever to make a post about how a recent tsunami uncovered R'lyeh; it really isn't), using your characters to comment on sensitive details about your or anyone else's personal life, and things like that.
FOUR] If you're under the age of eighteen, stay out of smut posts and threads. This is obviously on the honor system, but it'd be nice if people followed it.
FIVE] Play nice with the rest of the class, and don't be a dick. Your characters may or may not be stuck in a world full of horrorterrors attempting to consume their souls, but you are all people with feelings who do not need to live on pain and misery (I hope). Flaming, harassment, gross insensitivity, and general OOC antagonism are not permitted.