Looking up Mazes and Monsters, Rona Jaffe’s 1981 novel about Dungeons & Dragons, for a previous post introduced me to an astonishing phenomenon: the Mazes and Monsters fan community. Yes, it exists! Sort of!
There are two things worth noting about the Mazes and Monsters fan community.
1) This site, which claims inaccurately to be “The ONLY source for Mazes & Monsters!!!” is headlined thus:
“RONA JAFFE [author of the original novel] fails her SAVE VS. DEATH ROLL…..
Rona Jaffe died of cancer on December 30th, 2005″
Wow! That’s so bizarrely crass, it sounds like something I would say. How about a little respect for the lady?
Besides, Jaffe’s book was pretty good. Way better than the movie, certainly.
Just the one bag?
2) MazesandMonsters.net. This domain was registered a year ago, and this past October the owner published “the first major post of the new website.” But, uh, the movie came out in 1982. What prompted this sudden act of Mazeism? Does it herald a Mazes resurgence? Or is this simply the work of a lone basement-dweller? If only it were the former. If only.
I myself was fond of Mazes and Monsters primarily because of Jay Jay (see my nerds post), especially his hat collection. Ever since, I’ve thought it would be neat to have a bunch of wacky hats, perhaps to wear when I’m writing. This hat yen was revived recently when I saw a blue-sequin-covered cowboy hat at a thrift store. I didn’t buy it because, you know, lice. Still — imagine a Sherlock cap! A pith helmet! I may just do it someday.
Here’s a tribute to Jay Jay’s hats, courtest of J.R. Antrim at Ironic Consumer.
–Mazes and Monsters video clips from Ironic Consumer (“Jay Jay’s interested in more than Tom Hank’s Longsword +2, if you know what I mean.”)
–GameSpy’s history of D&D fearmongering.
–Wikipedia’s entry on (apocryphal) Mazes-style “steam tunnel incidents.”