Anthony: Hello and welcome to Capes the Couch for Come Get counseling. I’m Anthony Sitko
Doc Issues: and I, Dr. Issues.
Anthony: This is Issue 157 and in conjunction with the upcoming black Adam. We are going to be talking Dr. Fate and if you’re saying to yourself, But Anthony, Dr.
Fate doesn’t come out until next week. You would be correct. I screwed up the calendar. So I had initially planned for this to come out the week of black Adam, and then when I was putting the episode list together, somehow I switched this in gambit, which is fine. Just gives me another week to work on the Cajun accent that I’m going to attempt for the video and I guarantee it will be better than what I just said.
Doc Issues: No promises.
Anthony: I’m gonna do my level best, Y’all. I, I promise I will. So real quick before we get started, if you are not already a patron, you should definitely go to patreon.com/capes on the couch and subscribe their. I’m not trying to hawk too much, but we have got some good stuff coming for patrons in the next few weeks in terms of bonus content and episodes that will only be available for patrons for at least a very, very long time.
We may at some point put them on the main feed, but we we’re going to give you the good, good, you know, in in to, in other words Anthony Sitko is your hookup hall, if you hear me. Nice. So, so if there is, if you are a patron, there is a 141 and two thirds percent chance that you are going to hear some amazing content coming to your Patreon feed in the next couple of weeks.
Doc Issues: Oh, man. I think you’re amazing. Because those types of references are so niche that you have to have a cross genre understanding to really get everything you can out of this show. And I hope we’re encouraging that.
Anthony: Absolutely. Well, he was just trending not that long ago on Twitter because somebody decided to throw videos of him doing all kinds of incredible moves.
Doc Issues: He ain’t getting up from that one. .
Anthony: I’m talking. No, I’m talking young Scott Steiner.
Doc Issues: Oh, I’m well aware. I’m talking about the first time he busted out the Steiner screwdriver, or literally looked like he just dropped a guy on his head, but it was clear that he caught a midstream. Like I’m not aware a person could
do that, but whatever.
Anthony: Yeah. Scott Steiner in the Michigan headgear days with with Rick was just this. Amazing combo speed and size. He was Brock Lesner before B Lesner, but I digress. That’s for Travis and the wrestle special to have a separate discussion one of these days. Travis will invite me on that show. Damn you Travis.
I kid, I kid. All love to Travis.
So Dr. Fate, Kent Nelson, there have been many characters to wear the mantle of Dr. Fate. He is a legacy character. But for the purposes of this episode, we are going to be discussing the OG Dr. Fate Kent Nelson, created by Gardner Fox and Howard Sherman in more fun comics, number 55, May, 1940 because apparently more fun comics was what you could get away with calling a book as opposed to fun comics.
Now, does that mean you have additional fun comics or comics that are even of a higher amount of fun than other comics? There’s some syntax ambiguity in the title,
Doc Issues: but does that imply that if you just have fun comics, was there a less fun comics or does that delve into more serious comics?
Anthony: We could really go off on a tangent regarding the English language, but we digress as we always do on this show. Kent Nelson is on an archeological dig with his father Sven when they accidentally awaken an ancient Sumerian God nabu the Wise, and the chamber was filled with poisonous gas, which kills ve, so Nabu pities Kent and trained him in magic for about 20 years before Kent returns to the US and begins operating as a superhero.
Now, I just wanna pause there for a moment. He trained for 20 years. This is not some fly by night rookie superhero. 20 years. You never see that kind of commitment these days in comics. It’s always, I got my powers. Cool. Let me go out and start kicking some ass. He trained, he studied. 20 years is a long damn time.
Doc Issues: Let’s make this clear. As a doctor, even with college, med school, residency, fellowship, you don’t hit 20 years for that type of training. So no man,
Anthony: I’m an attorney. Three years of law school, that was it. 20 years. 20 years. That is a seasoned vet.
So wearing the helmet of NA and not the piece, or the shin guard of Nabu, the helmet of Nabu, he gains incredible magic power. Although it is revealed that Nabu is often in control of his body while he’s wearing the helmet.
He leader creates a half helmet to regain greater control, although it does cost him some power. Now, he is one of the founding members of the original Justice Society of America in 1940, which predates the Justice League by quite some time. This was the first, Hey, let’s get these heroes together and put them on one team coordinating efforts.
This was a big crossover. This was a huge deal in 1940, this Justice Society of America. So Dr. Fate, again, one of the OGs, which is something that we’re going to see in the upcoming Black Adam movie. We’re going to see the Justice Society, We’re gonna see Dr. Fate. We’re gonna see Hawk Man. We’re gonna see a couple of the other characters in the jsa.
So very much looking forward to this. So after being one of the founding members of the jsa, he later retires and focuses on being a physician alongside his wife, Inza. So in the 1980s, Inza committed suicide, but Nabu wouldn’t allow Kent to die until he found a successor, which he did. And we’re not gonna get into Eric Strauss and all the problems they’re in, at which point Nabu granted him peace and let him die.
But. Since this is comics, nobody really stays dead. Kent and Inza are resurrected into younger bodies. And then Inza is actually operating as Dr. Fate for a time before the two battle extent, who is a villain who rapidly ages Kent and Inza to their proper bodies. They find Jared Stevens, who becomes the new Dr.
Fate and Kenton Inza die and enter a dimension in Jared’s Aula. And this is all, I wanna say, mid nineties, this is happening. And so basically Kent and Inza have remained dead since then. I believe he was reanimated during blackest night for a time. It was a black lantern. Basically, everybody who was dead at that point got resurrected as a black lantern.
But Kent Nelson has functionally stayed dead for the better part of 30 years. So that’s the. Primary background we’re gonna give you on Ken Nelson. Again, we’re not gonna get into the other doctors’ fate, doctors’ fate way, pluralize,
that’s talk about the issues. And the here is the cost of magic. So the first issue we’re gonna discuss is the fact that Nabu is constantly controlling his body, that every time he wants to put on the helmet and utilize the powers, Nabu says, All right you’re gonna sit down. I’m gonna take over, I’ll wake you up when this is all said and done.
And we kind of saw this play out a little bit in the moon night series where Mark would take over the body. Steven would essentially black out and come to and say what’s said, but. In a different enough way, because here Ken was aware that NA’s influence was going to ultimately take control.
Doc Issues: Okay, so the very first thing with all of this, and maybe it’s just me thinking this, but I think other people would as well, What sort of reality analog can you come up with this?
Because at no point do we really have that level of mind control or whatever you wanna say. The good news is you don’t have to go that far. This is what humans go through when they are developing. You have no control over yourself for quite a while. Anthony is experiencing this right now with his children and they’re learning as they go along.
I know I’m saying it in a funny way, but it’s the truth. This is how human development happens. Someone is going to be doing things for you for a bit until you can do them for yourself. And either you’re going to learn how to do them independently or you’re going to partially learn them and continue to retool what you need to know.
Hopefully with the guidance of someone in a safe but experimental way so that you can make some gentle mistakes rather than really, really large ones and get hurt. And unfortunately, there are some people that don’t even get that opportunity because they may have certain things that are challenges for them.
They can be physical challenges, they can be mental challenges, they can be things that make it very clear, not because of anyone’s fault, I’m not going that far, but just because of random chance someone else is going to have to do something for them physically. If you are not prepared for that, once you have your own personality, your own mindset, your own goals, your own motivations, then it can be a huge point of contention because, sorry, it could be a huge point of contempt because in general, a individual, an adult individual wants to have autonomy, meaning they want to know that they can do the things that they want to do when they want to do them.
Of course, there are negotiations about that with society as a whole. It’s the reason why we call work work as opposed to the idea that you do everything in a hedonistic style addit without any sense of consequence. But that doesn’t mean that you want that with your basic toiletries. That doesn’t mean that you don’t wanna be able to take a shower when you want.
That doesn’t mean you don’t want to eat when you want sleep, when you want. Most things don’t govern that once you get past the basic day, you know that that daytime period I know there’s always cultural differences, but that daytime period, yes, there may be things that you know you have to do for others, but after that you’re supposed to really navigate everything else on your own.
Now, imagine, and I’ll admit, I’m speaking from the heart from this, what if you know for a fact a person isn’t able to do that for themselves anymore because of dementia? What if there are things that you simply see that this person needs help with and that person is fighting you? I get this in my hospital all the time, and it’s not a fun thing to go through.
So, yeah, it’s not that far off. Even though we’re putting it in the comic perspective, when someone doesn’t have. Physical autonomy or mental autonomy at all times. Then you can create a sense of helplessness, hopelessness, a sense of anger, sense of hostility, all those things. They’re all possibilities.
With someone like Ken though, what’s the difference? Why don’t we see that happen nearly as much? It’s because these were contractual agreements. No, it may not be formally written out like an attorney would, but it was a social contract as we do where for this particular situation, we have established that a person is going to do this for me in exchange for either survival or some other benefit in the future.
The best example I can give for this, and it’s something I won’t do cuz I have no interest in doing it. If you’ve ever done skydiving, if you’ve ever jumped out of an airplane, the first one you do, heaven forbid, is in tandem. You have someone who’s experienced doing it, and you are strap to that person.
A lot of people don’t learn this until they actually sign up for it. You’re not going alone. And by the way, when I say strap two, I don’t mean loose goosey like one arm or something. No. The person is going to lift you with their body and they’re going to push you outta the plane. And I think this is, this is really important, especially for now, we’re really getting close to the comic because from what I understand, for people who have experienced it, the first jump that you do, the person will say, Okay, we’re going now on the count of 3 1 2.
They go on two, not on three. Why? Because the person is technically in front and they’ll freeze often, and they don’t want that freeze to happen. So while there are situations where you wish you had control and you don’t, There are plenty of situations where you are thankful you don’t have control. Once again, I’ll bring it back to myself.
When I was going through medical school and I thought I was going to be a surgeon, nobody wanted me cutting on them with no experience. I was there with a well trained resident who was also under the supervision of a well trained attending surgeon. They were the ones doing everything. They were the ones showing me the things that were very important.
Be glad that someone else was in control, even though in theory could I have gone completely rogue and just said, Okay, I’m gonna try for myself. No one does that. Even though no one was physically controlling my body, there was enough mental control there, and I mean that in a good way. There was enough respect for a system that had checks and balances that allowed for the wellbeing of people that were incapacitated.
After all, they’re under anesthesia. They can’t do a thing. They are totally at your whim, at your mercy. So there’s a lot of times, especially in I’ll, I’ll be selfish and say in US culture where we want that individualism, and sometimes we take it to a certain potential extreme, but other cultures don’t make, you know, don’t go that far.
There is a reason why it’s okay sometimes to let someone else have control, because I know that’s different than many times I’ve pointed it out in other episodes. But what I’m getting at is it doesn’t have to be an all or nothing experience. We’re all gonna go through these points in life and I’m here to let you know that it’s
Anthony: That is incredible life advice. And I wasn’t really sure at the beginning where you were gonna go with that, especially with the skydiving metaphor. But I like how you, you tied it all back around at the. And it’s funny, sometimes I even feel that way about this show in the sense that you are the professional and I may be the one running the mixing board and the guy throwing in the pop culture references.
And once in a great while, I’ll have something intelligent to say, But without you here, this show wouldn’t exist. You are the professional, you are the one that I’m strapped to, for lack of a better term, that is shoving us outta the airplane on two . Ha fool you on the way down. What?
Yeah. But you’re right in the sense, That we do tend to take some of that individualism in this country to unhealthy places, shall we say. And collaboration and cooperation need to be given a good amount of, I don’t wanna say deference, but acknowledgement in society because without it, we don’t have a social contract.
I mean, if you’re the type of person to believe in social contract theory, I am. And I just, gosh, again some of the individualism stuff can really be saved for another podcast.
And so the idea of completely subsuming yourself in service of someone else is not good. The idea of doing what you want consequences be damned, is not good. There has to be a middle ground somewhere, that goldlock zone where everyone is allowed to live a life that they want to live in, pursuit of life, liberty and happiness and all that, but not at the expense of others.
And when you come up to that border, that’s where things have to be negotiated and or clearly. Again, that’s a topic for sociology podcast or a political science podcast. This ain’t that kind of show . So we will shift then to the second issue, which is the losses plural of Inza. And again, Kent has gone through his own fair share of loss.
But inza again trigger warning. Did, did commit suicide in the eighties. I’m struggling to remember the exact causes behind it. I believe it had something to do with magical villain wreaking havoc. There was also some physical illness, I believe that was present as well. I, I read some of the, the back issues and I pulled from other sources.
For the rest of the background. So I admittedly don’t have a comprehensive understanding of the situation, but she did kill herself and this obviously left Kent very distraught to the point that now he wanted to die to be reunited with her. And Nabu said, Nope, hold up. Not yet. You have to find somebody to take your place that is compounding the problem.
And then they both get resurrected and then age, and then a die again. It’s, it’s a lot. It’s very difficult, I would imagine, to lose a spouse once, nevermind multiple times.
Doc Issues: Yeah. I’m glad that you just said that because there’s so many ways that this can be taken. One is the literal that let’s say you were married, had a spouse, that spouse dies.
You remarry have another spouse. That spouse dies.
Barring other philosophical views, and I’m not trying to disparage them, but if we’re getting one go round when it comes to life, those types of decisions that are meant to be long lasting, usually you’d rather not have them cut short. We know that divorce happens, but that means that even if it wasn’t mutual, then there at least is one party that says, I don’t want this.
It’s one thing to say, I want to eliminate ties with you as my life partner. It’s another thing to say, I’m looking to eliminate my existence, and so. Of course a show like this is going to talk about suicide, of course, especially a time like this where this has been a big push recently with regards to suicide prevention.
And if this is a, a topic that is, is triggering someone, I just wanna point out that there’s always support, there’s always help. We point that out in our bumper, but to, to get back to actually what I’m going with with this, there is a lot that can be done to process the death of a loved one, but there is nothing that replaces the idea that that person thought that life was not worth what you think it is for them.
What that person has done with regards to suicide, especially if it’s a spouse or significant other, or close family member or close friend, is they’ve just detonating a pain bomb. They have managed to take pain and spread it to as many people as possible, and that can lead to some conflicting emotions because of course you have the grief part, and we’ve talked about grief in many forms, but it also creates a mystery.
Sometimes the person will leave clues or maybe leave a complete path that’s been walked, be it a note or, or other things, or this is something that’s been ongoing in a chronic condition. And, and in which case it’s something that’s known, but often it’s not. And in those situations, it becomes a battle as to how that mystery gets resolved.
I’m not saying solved. Solved implies that there was something that was pre contextual and therefore has a narrative that has to be finalized to end the story that may not exist. The narrative that you tell yourself that exists and how you decide to emotionally process that narrative that is crucial to all of this, because you can start to weave that story however you want to, and maybe comics is, is one of the best ways to do this.
I think that there’s a huge metaphor there to say you have to find a replacement before your life is over. I, I wouldn’t necessarily go that literal. I would think it’s more that this other person gave you a sense of purpose, a sense of meaning. If they’re no longer there for whatever reason, what’s next?
How do you keep going? And we do see very commonly, regardless of if it’s suicide or not, that if one spouse dies that commonly the other spouse, Tends to die sooner and potentially even unexpectedly, even if there were no previous physiological cause. So we know there’s that connection, whatever you wanna call that.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. I don’t wanna make it sound all doom and gloom. The whole point is there is another path. There is one of acknowledging that this person, for all we know, and, and I’m leaving this as possibilities, okay? Cause I know everybody walks their path, that this person had such a tumultuous journey, that they were fighting every step of the way to make it as powerful as it could be.
And for one reason or another, it has concluded the fact that they were willing to travel such a jagged road, such a rocky road, allowed for yours to potentially not have as many rocks. As many things in the future because they showed you a different way, not the way that you want it, not the way you intended, but the way it is now.
And it leaves unfortunate opportunities. I say unfortunate because suicide in my opinion, is something that, that is always painful.
But there’s still that hope for those that remain. And if it’s possible to, to take the perspective that the person that’s now at rest, yes, they spread pain, but they also spread information. Information about what this world can, can do if a person is, is having difficulties and, and has no way out or thinks they have no way.
So as a typical call, just nothing eloquent about it. Just if at any point you’re feeling that way, please don’t be embarrassed. Please don’t be ashamed. Please just let someone close to, you know, and they may be ham fisted about it. They may be awkward or they may be gentle, they may be gracious, they may be angry, whatever it is.
I don’t know how the person on the other side of it’s gonna react, but I can tell you that it is usually from a place of love. I don’t want people to manipulate this and think, Oh, and, and believe me, I do get this with patients. They feel like the only way they get attention is by pointing out thoughts of life not being worth it.
I don’t wanna romanticize that. But I do want to say that when someone is asking for attention, there’s a good chance it’s because they want attention. Don’t drop that just for the sake of saying, I’m worried about how it looks or how other people may think
for anybody that’s lost a lost a spouse. I can’t speak for myself. I, I can’t. But I can speak for someone and for all I know he’s listening to this episode cuz he does once in a while.
I have a role model now in terms of how to navigate these things. And I can tell you that when you have truly done everything you can for someone at the end of life and you, and you can be at peace with that things truly. Become brighter.
Anthony: It was beautifully said. And as someone who has been on the receiving end of two phone calls from two separate individuals related to thoughts of suicide, or at least idealizing it, it is nervewracking. It is stressful. I’m not gonna even pretend that it’s not to get, a call from, from two of your friends saying that they are very, very low.
Is is not a situation I would wish upon anyone, but it beats getting a phone call that they’re not there anymore. I would much rather receive a phone call from a friend saying, Hey, I’m in a bad place and I could use some help talking me out of it. Then a phone call from another friend saying So and so isn’t around anymore.
I will take that, six days a week and twice on Sundays without even hesitating. So yes, we do remind everyone that you are not alone and help us out there. It’s may sound trite, but it’s in our bumper for a reason. It’s in our, our disclaimer for a reason. Because it’s the truth. And if you are in the discord, you have access to the RTS bot.
Thanks to our friends over at Guardians. Mh There is a new three digit number. What is it? What’s the, the new number?
Doc Issues: 9 88.
Anthony: 9 88 is the new suicide prevention hotline number. There are resources available there to help you with that.
And there are also resources available for the survivors if someone does unfortunately choose to go through with it. There are copious amounts of resources available for friends and relatives. Who have lost someone to suicide. And I think just in general, grief counseling is very helpful. Even the second time that Inza passed, which wasn’t suicide related, it was just they got aged instantaneously.
Grief counseling can be incredibly helpful to address the loss. I just posted in the Discord, not that long ago, was posted several years ago on red. It was a quote from an older editor, and it was about grief comes in waves and it’s been widely spread around the internet that the first couple times you get hit with the wave, it knocks you down.
You’re sputtering, you don’t know how to deal with it, and over time the waves come further and further. And they’re smaller and you can see them coming, so you can prepare yourself. It’s a beautiful sentiment and it’s the truth that we all experience loss in various ways throughout our life. That’s grandparents other, you know, older relatives could even be not older relatives.
Grief comes in many forms, and so we all experience it as part of the human condition. And I think that capacity to acknowledge grief and loss in others, and the empathy that comes with that is something that is in short supply, frankly, in our society. And I think we need to be reminded of. From time to time when we’re dealing with other people, speaking of, loss and things of that nature, I’m always reminded of the quote from Michelle McNamara, the the late wife of Pat Oswalt who said it’s chaos.
Be kind. And there again, Pat Oswald was able to turn a horrific tragedy into a story, into to, to his own way of healing and his own way of, of dealing with things. And so I’m always reminded of that quote that, that life is chaos. Be kind. If we could just carry that with us every day and in all of our interactions with others, especially strangers, we might be able to turn a corner.
I say Mike, but on any given day, I may or may not be more pessimistic than others. So now that we went really, really dark, we’re still gonna get heady, but I think this is gonna be a little bit lighter in terms of tone. So the third one isn’t really an issue, it’s just something that Doc and I were kicking around while we were discussing this, and Doc has a lot of thoughts on this question.
So the question is really, what’s really the point of magic.
Doc Issues: All right, So I’m gonna peel back the curtain a little bit on this. We like to do three issues for each episode. So those of you that are new to this, yes, that is the pattern. But sometimes we only come up with two that are truly directly with the character, which means doc gets to go off the rails and hopefully it’s entertaining to you.
It’s always cathartic to me, so hey, just come along for the ride. When I mention magic, I think of a few things. I think first of the stereotype of the person that is on stage that is doing what are considered tricks, because we know that there are certain things that are not considered possible in reality, and yet when we see someone do those things that are considered impossible, we get the endorphin release because we think now that things that are impossible have just become possible, even if it’s for that small moment.
And then there are us jerks, and I include myself in that jerk category where it has nothing to do with that. It’s. How did that m effort do it? And you are trying and, and I remember doing this as a little kid, cuz sometimes these magic specials would come on on tv and I would either hope that they would get replayed or I’d record them because I wanted to slow down the tape and pause it to see where the slide of hand was.
If it was with cards, if it was with whatever. Just to say, where is that little thing that I’m missing that you are hiding or distracting me from so I could expose it. Not because I wanted the person to get in trouble, but because I wanted to understand. And that’s the part that always motivated me because I think a lot of, I think that way about life.
I think that there are so many things, be it interpersonal interactions, relationships, or if you wanna get into the idea that things happened and you weren’t there and you’re trying to understand what happened after the fact. Mysteries, all sorts of different things where I just want to get to that inner truth and the fact that there is some person, I’m saying person, because this is important.
There is someone that is intentionally blocking that ability because they want that sense of control. Bringing it back to the first, the very first issue, That’s what magic can be on the surface. Now let’s get into something that’s a bit deeper than that, a bit more spiritual because for the longest time with human existence, longer than what we now in modern society think about, there was this idea that we knew that there were things that we had no control over and therefore we had to assign something, whatever that was, that truly was in control and we were coming along for the ride.
And how we describe that if we had no other vocabulary or understanding, essentially falls into the category of magic. It just is something that we don’t know about, that we don’t understand. We’ll just ascribe in a different way and that’s comforting. So I don’t know why rain happens, but rain falls down and we get wet, but it also allows for crops to grow and everything.
Okay. Why does that happen? And sometimes we get droughts instead. Why do we get floods? Why is it not perfectly regulated and controlled? Well, that’s not up to us. It must be something else. Now, we do have other ways to explain it, but it still doesn’t get to the heart of the idea of we don’t control that at all.
I’m just giving that as a very basic example. We know fully well how deep this goes. Every one of us has these types of thoughts, and that’s fine. That’s what we do. But do you notice how I’m coming at this from two different angles? On one hand, it’s us creating illusions of things that we want people to think and expand our minds while other people are trying to expose how in reality, there’s something much different going on.
Meanwhile, on the other end, you have a lot of things that we know almost nothing about, but we keep trying to get bits and pieces here and there via space missions, telescopes, deep sea expectations, the exploration that we’ve done, the the experie experiments that we do with our own bodies of things that we have to learn about in terms of fighting off disease.
All these other things that sometimes we ascribe to something we don’t understand and but we know has to be omnipotent. While other people are saying that we’re going to slowly chip away at this and I hope it’s not offending you, those two sides. Are part of the same coin, and I think that as long as we keep that knowledge in balance, then we don’t have to have the deep, I mean truly deep dissonance that I see on a regular basis with some people when they’re trying to deal with the idea of the existence of God or religion or people that are even delusional saying that they are a higher power themselves, even when they still have a physical form, while not criticizing people that point out that there was someone that had a physical form and is God, none of this has to be as controversial or as, as threatening or as painful as we make it out to be.
There are people that follow the idea of being Wiccans.. The idea that, you know, there are things that still are supernatural. The, you know, nature, religion itself, the concept of spirituality, Buddhism, Hinduism, all these things. The idea that things within our world can manifest as spiritual things that.
Allow us to have a better existence. The idea that maybe our whole point is to be completely different and, and have a different plane of existence. That either when we die, we’re gonna go to, or even when we’re on the on the planet, it’s all gonna end with us when we die. Either way, I’m totally open about this.
So to get back to the original question, what’s the point of magic? I think is just the idea that it allows our minds to go places that we wouldn’t otherwise. And it sure is hell makes the world more fun.
Anthony: Well, given that magic makes the world more fun, but if you’re talking about whether to use that as a corollary for higher power, religion, God deity, whatever you wanna call it, how many people have. Murdered and slaughtered and invaded in the name of a particular deity over the course of the entirety of human history.
I don’t know that I would necessarily qualify that as fun, but the idea of someone maybe shooting sparkles from their fingertips. Yeah, no, that’s kind of cool.
I always would watch those same magic shows. David Copperfield was big. I mean, we’re, we’re dating ourselves in terms of age, but David Copperfield always had those big TV specials when I was younger and whether it was, Okay, I’m gonna put the cards on the screen and I’ll know which one you end up with, et cetera.
Or making the Statue of Liberty disappear or all kinds of things. Yeah, magic is fun. That’s why I like pen and tell. They show you how they’re gonna do it. They show you what they’re doing, they break it down for you. And in the meantime, they’ve done something completely different because showing you the misdirection in and of itself is misdirection.
And it’s just beautiful on a meta level. Yeah, magic is cool. So we’re gonna take a break, plug a couple of shows, and when we get back, we’ll get into treatment. Stay tuned.
And now we’re going to get into treatment, starting as we always do within Universe. Doc, how you gonna help Doc?
Doc Issues: That’s, that’s kind of the point. Am I helping? Am I helping Doc? See the problem is who am I viewing as the patient?
And, and spoiler alert is kind of gets to a little bit of the skip, but Kent is really trying to survive everything that’s happened to him and he does a decent job of, of handling so much stuff. Can we work on this on, on this Nabu person because it seems like too often when it comes to, to mental health, to psychiatry.
We are very focused on the individual and I respect that. But since we’re in universe and, and I can go ahead and do things in comics that I, I wouldn’t do in our, our world as it’s constructed. I really wanna go to the heart of it and I would really wanna. See if I could get a session with Nabu himself and, and just try and figure out, even as a god, like kind of relating to what we just talked about with that last issue.
Are you really sure just kind of delving into that one person and, and giving them all that ability and everything and, and channeling all that. Are you sure you can go, you know, do you have to go about it that way? Is, is there another way? Can we, can we start to humanize a little bit without getting into the human , you know, and, and, and leave Kent alone just for, for a while so that he can be just a regular dude.
I’d really wanna see if I could go that route. I have no idea where it would take me, but I, I basically would say like, you know what, I, I think there’s misdirection here with the patient. I think we, we gotta get the right person on the couch or whatever that would be.
Anthony: Interesting. And now having here you explain it.
I can’t really say I see the fault in it. I’m not entirely certain how you would begin to provide treatment to a lord of consequence, but good on you for trying. So out of universe I would equate an analog with an older, older individual, we can incorporate the ends of thing, obviously, who has perhaps been dealing with some undo influences over the course of their professional life.
And it’s brought them great professional fame, but personally has created some issues. With them in terms of maybe interpersonal communication. I, I don’t quite exactly know how to provide an out of universe analog for this. Mm. But maybe you have some suggestions.
Doc Issues: So if you’re talking about, Oh boy, I kind of hesitate because once again, nobody that we mention as a real person in the world, they may exist, but we, meaning me, I am not treating any one person based on public knowledge or anything of the sort.
I have no knowledge of anyone’s individual situation. Just as a major spoiler here. But if you’re talking about someone who does have certain requirements for assistance, because that was the first issue. Who has, in theory, let’s say they, let’s say they have some serious disabilities and also. Has gone through significant loss, although in one area they have had significant success.
And so on one hand they get held, and we’ve seen this plenty of times. A person gets held up as like this beacon of, of everything that’s considered good in the world. Meanwhile, they’re saying like, I’ve had some serious tragedy happen in my life, and I don’t need everybody saying that to me. I just need someone to help me with this other stuff.
That actually is pretty common. And to be honest with you, that’s something that outpatient providers see a lot because we are the ones that they go to because they can’t let down their guard for anybody else, you know? And I’m doing my best not to name names. I mean, there have been people, for example, that have had tragedies in terms of, be it motor vehicle accidents or things end up paralyzed and yet, They have foundations, they do wonderful things, but it doesn’t change the fact that for one reason or another, their life was completely altered and it was out of their control.
It was an accident or, or whatever. Maybe it might have been an attack, you know, maybe someone was trying to rob them, Whatever. My point is there a lot of variations on it. It doesn’t have to be one particular person. But the, the whole point of all of that is you end up with a situation where congratulations, you have created purpose for your life, but all that other stuff still remains messy.
How do you parse that out? How do you deal with, as Anthony so eloquently put it, the waves that come either with grief for yourself or if it is with the loss of others, you know? And, and there is no one right answer for this. It’s a matter of what techniques do you still use. Because what I think ends up happening is I, I’m trying to think of the right, right term for it.
I don’t think there’s a professional term for it. It it, Cause it’s not extinguished, but it’s, fatigue, it’s coping mechanism, fatigue. The idea that you have used the same coping mechanism for years, decades even. And while you’ve become known to do that and everyone knows that, when you, let’s say, are going on a nature hike or something on a trip, I should say, especially if you have limitations, but the point is you’re, you’re traveling and everybody knows that your mechanism for coping and it’s like, well, I’ve done that so long.
Like that doesn’t have the same effect that it used to. And then the person starts to potentially think like, Oh, well then what’s wrong with me? Getting back into some of the potential negative thoughts that they had previously when they were first dealing with the grief or the change or the loss, whatever.
And it’s the therapist responsibility not to. Tell the person, Okay, just keep doing what you’re doing. Or to say, All right, come up with some brand new ones. We’ll do whatever is necessary to accommodate those things with the other person still being in charge because they’ve demonstrated that they can still be in charge of their life.
There is one part though that becomes really scary, and that is from a professional standpoint, if we’ve noticed that there’s enough of a change that the person isn’t as much in control as they used to be, and that’s when some really difficult discussions happen. Is there someone else that we can contact for you?
Is there someone you would like to be notified of our sessions? And we have to find a way to, Hmm, I don’t wanna say skirt around. It’s not skirting around, it’s, it’s just making sure that the person starts taking the hint. There may be some transitions that you don’t wanna happen that are going to happen because we notice that you may need extra help with things that you didn’t need before, even though you may have overcome this original barrier.
So all those things taken into consideration along with monitoring to make sure if there’s ever been medication management, that that’s not playing a role and all those other things. But really it, it’s, it’s more along the lines of you. You’ve definitely had some self fulfillment despite tragedy. That doesn’t mean that the pain has just been eliminated, and how do we help it so that it just gradually gets less and less over time, hopefully.
And what do we do when things spike up?
Anthony: When you were having the discussion regarding the coping mechanism fatigue and how it wasn’t working, the first thing that frankly popped into my head was, Substance abuse and how in many cases, folks continue to use the substances in higher doses and greater amounts and things of that nature because it’s no longer as effective.
And the same can be said to your point, for coping mechanisms or other things that may not necessarily be destructive in and of themselves, but the effect still doesn’t work like it used to. It’s worn off. You’ve grown, numb to it, you’ve grown accustomed to it. It doesn’t hit those dopamine receptors in the same way.
That’s, that’s a common thing for folks with adhd, that you have to go from thing to thing because you hyper focus on the the whatever it is until you’ve worn it out so much that it no longer brings you any joy. So you have to move to the new thing because you’re constantly chasing that high, constantly chasing that thrill.
So the idea of anything, as you said, like a coping mechanism becoming less effective over time, I think is a very understandable and relatable concept, if nothing else. But definitely the, the idea that you need to constantly shift, and I don’t wanna say evolve, but you need to maintain a certain level of self awareness.
And it’s when that self-awareness drops or becomes hazardously low, to your point is, is really when a lot of problems. Because you don’t even recognize all the things that are happening to you around you by you. And that’s no fun for you or anyone else as we are all painfully aware. So with with all of that being said, we got really deep in this episode unexpectedly , I suppose it was preordained.
It was kismet. So let us see what happens when we get Dr. Fate, Ken Nelson on Dr. Issues his couch.
Doc Issues: Hello, Kent. I’m Drue.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Hello, Doctor.
Doc Issues: So what can I help you with?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): I should be able to tell you that.
Doc Issues: What does that mean?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Well, you’re aware of my condition.
Doc Issues: Ah, that name. It’s a bit on the nose, isn’t it?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Your one to talk .
Doc Issues: I’ve always wanted to be on the other end for once.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): as much as it may amuse you. I’ll admit I’m not much for small talk.
Doc Issues: Neither am I.
Usually. For some reason I’m a bit more loose than usual and I don’t even know you, that’s telling. I’m not sure what,
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Well, I’m used to others obfuscating their motives. Some other time, but not when they consider themselves an ally.
Is there something you are looking to avoid?
Doc Issues: This isn’t supposed to be about me. The longer we talk about my own mindset, the less time we have to address yours. So to get back to your original point, no, I don’t want anything about my future.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Phew. Well, I suppose it’s good that I don’t have to put on the helmet then.
Doc Issues: Wait, were you purposely flipping to questions on me because you thought I’d want that?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Well, that’s what most people want. They think magic is part of a whimsical show. But the realms of god’s are deadly serious. Whimsical ask for lottery numbers leads to the knowledge that their cousin will soon fall ill. Tears of joy. Tears of sorrow. They all stain the face the same.
Doc Issues: How morbid.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Again, from what I know of you, you’re casting stones from a glass house.
Doc Issues: Gallows humor is a well known defense mechanism. I know where mine comes from. What about yours?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): I never implied humor. You have your own lens to view the world. I tend towards stoicism face reality for what it is, and it will never harm you.
Doc Issues: Then you’re also aware that reality can bring wonder enthusiasm, passion as well. Hmm, I think your helmet is your way of physically manifesting a protection from the worst, but it may also limit your best.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Well, the civilizations that been saved would disagree.
Doc Issues: I’m sure they disagree.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): What if I told you it’s not me? Well, not all me.
Doc Issues: I’ve done this enough times to take a hint. Who then is it safe to tell?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): You’re going to think I’m crazy that I have multiple personalities or something like that?
Doc Issues: No, no
labels. No. Please. It’s too quick to cast such judgments and I never use that kind of language. Heck, I’ve even had sessions with someone who deals with ancient god’s granted power and exchange for loyalty.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): And to think, I assumed I had a unique scenario.
Doc Issues: Oh, you have got to be kid-
Magnets draw metal because they are strong, magnets draw metal because they are strong. I have a mantra I used to recenter myself. Every situation is a new opportunity to enhance a mystical beings. Psyche Aura. I, I don’t know what the proper terms are.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): You know, this might be forward, but it’s clear to me that you have only been on the receiving end of magical influence.
You’re hindered by what is instinctually unfamiliar. I may have a way to assist your comprehension.
Doc Issues: Cool. I enjoy reading new things as long as you know there’s a decent English translation.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Well, the process is not done through theory alone. I may not cast spells on myself, but if I know that it will be used on another,
Doc Issues: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. I’ve spent my career telling people to limit their use of a surrogate, and you’re inviting me to jump in. Nope. Uhuh. No way.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): The best analog I can think of is guided meditation doctor.
Doc Issues: Safe forward is screwdriver. Got it.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): If you say so, this is a facsimile of my own helmet. Since you wouldn’t be able to wear my own, you’ll have an opportunity for just a piece of my existence.
Doc Issues: Ugh. My head, It’s like a 3D game set fire to my eyes.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): That is clarity beyond typical sight. If you are not of pure mind, then your soul will be destroyed in a matter of seconds. You have bent your mortal form to the whims of nabu for the good of the universe. This is no small sacrifice.
Doc Issues: I’m. Dying. I figure he just tricked me to knock me out or something.
Anthony (as Nabu): Kent Nelson and his wife have long been sacrificial lambs for the world. You are joining a steamed company if that is any consolation. Indeed, you appear to have an unwavering motivation to aid those around you, but you must let go of your modest approach. Ah.
Doc Issues: Oh wow. I can really help here. You’ve been ignored for too long.
Anthony (as Nabu): That is absurd. No one has ignored a Lord of order without consequence.
Doc Issues: Oh, I think you’re underestimating your vulnerability. You’ve too often neglected kindness for weakness act after long delays Because of impulse, I can do something that no one else has offer.
I can listen.
Anthony (as Nabu): I have traveled for eons battled entities that have no name.
And even at your minuscule level guided the Pharaohs for centuries. What makes you any different from the countless visceral vessels I have utilized through epics of the unknown.
Doc Issues: Try me, Tell me all the frustrations you’ve had since existence and I’ll be right there with every word you say.
Anthony (as Nabu): Sometimes I really miss Celia.
That’s the home world. Well, we were around well before the world, of course, but you have to start somewhere, right? Anyway, the fellow lords are way more petty than you can imagine, and that’s why human ears have a trauss.
Doc Issues: Wow. Huh. I haven’t used that term since medical school. Anatomy class. This is amazing.
Anthony (as Nabu): I have been trying to demonstrate the futility of human history and yet you still stand there and raptured. What manner of magic are you sourcing? I have never been in the presence of such patient warmth
Doc Issues: told you so.
Anthony (as Nabu): I only know of scripture that describes human life lasting this long.
Doc Issues: What ?
Anthony (as Nabu): You have been listening to me for? Well, the newer terms, it would be millennia.
Doc Issues: What? My life, my, my family. I did, I didn’t mean
Anthony (as Nabu): *laughter* Oh man, I can’t believe you fell for that. I had a temporal spell cast.
Doc Issues: Oh my God. So it’s only been like, what? Felt like two or three hours maybe?
Anthony (as Nabu): No, it was millennia. I just protected you outside of time itself. I’ll place you back into your office in your own time as soon as you use the helmet. Oh, you know, that really was worthwhile.
Kent shall know of your ability to help him. For now, I shall leave you to your devices.
Doc Issues: Good, because I’ve had enough of your, my God.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Oh, good. You’re back. I hope you don’t mind. I called for dinner while you were preoccupied. I hope you like spring rolls. Thanks for saving the world. By the way,
Doc Issues: I just listened to the voice of the universe and you’re talking about me saving the world in spring rolls.
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): Oh yeah. That’s the, the prototype Half Hillman I had a while ago. I didn’t remember anything Nabu did, but he had card blanche. On the other end though, he would yell at me and said, I just complained a lot, but I guess you two got along better.
You even had this ominous I am doctor issues voice and you cast some spells I never knew existed. You gotta hold terrorist, sell to surrender and do community service to boot.
Doc Issues: Did I have a cool uniform?
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): It’s not really my style. It was too much of a black and blue theme. Plus you destroyed any photo or video instantaneously.
Doc Issues: That sounds like something I do. Anyway I don’t know how to tell you this, but I don’t, I can
Anthony (as Kent Nelson): I have my
other helmet. I’m good. Say no more. I really want Nabu to get the help anyway. Maybe now he’ll show some more respect because you prove humanity’s worth it in a different way. Keep it. If he wants another session, trust me, he’ll let you know.
Doc Issues: *crying* I DIDN’T GET TO ASK ABOUT THE
MEGA MILLIONS! *
Anthony: I not to try to go for a Brosnan accent there. I just, you know, he’s bond, at least to me, my generation. He’s James Bond.
Doc Issues: Yeah. Yeah.
Anthony: I didn’t want to try and replicate that. I just opted to go for generic older man.
So you fought crime for a thousand years and you came. It didn’t even have the decency to place a lottery ticket or make a stock investment,
Doc Issues: man,
you know, it’s to missed opportunity. I know it’s like, for some reason my, my own personal code of ethics decided that we, we needed to survive and exist and, and hopefully live in a better place as opposed to me balling out, oh
Anthony: money over everything, man. Get that paper.
Doc Issues: Well, it depends. I mean, you could either say money, power, respect, but you know, there’s also more money, more problems. So
Anthony: goodness knows, we don’t need flashy jackets and fisheye lenses. So recommended reading for this episode is Dr. Fate Volume two. Although it is primarily about the Straus, Ken Nelson does feature heavily.
In many stories, and the reason why I recommending Dr. Fate volume too is because really the best place to read Dr. Fate stories would be the OG stories, but it’s not often that you can find reprints of those original 80 year old comics. So for something a little more accessible, I would say Dr. Fate volume too.
You still get Kent Nelson and Inza, but it’s in a simpler form, shall we say. So upcoming episodes, Gambit, Mystique, and Poison Ivy. So again, I get an opportunity to do work on my Cajun, and then I will be sitting it out for two weeks, , because I’m not playing Mystique and I’m not gonna play Ivy. Although I thought about trying to maybe do a Lake Bell from the Harley Quinn series, cuz she’s got kind of that huskiness to it.
Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. . Maybe if I play with it. We’ll see. We’ll see. I’m also trying to work on getting a guest for the IV episode. We’ll see how that pan out. As always, you can find all of our episodes on our website, capes and the couch.com. You can also find us on the gonna geek website, gonna geek.com, where you can check out our show as well as a host of other amazing and fantastic geeky shows like Legend of Shield.
Just wrapping up the coverage we’ve been doing on the She Hawk series. That’s been a lot of fun talking with Sp and Chris and Lauren and Michelle providing some insight as a lawyer on the legal representation within the show. The present, the representation of the law, not the legal representation. I realize, as I said, legal representation technically means something different.
The, the presentation and the accuracy of the law, of which there has been, I’ve better i’ll it that way. I don’t practice practice law full time and even I’m going, Yeah, that’s wrong, . Nope. I move for a bad court thingy. Ugh. Yeah. Yeah. It’s, they’re not quite as bad as Lionel Hutz, but sometimes they get scar close to it.
As we mentioned at the tap of the show, we’re gonna have lots of great stuff coming for the patron. So if you go to patreon.com/capes on the couch where you can follow the links in the show notes, you can subscribe there. One, three or $5 a month unlocks a whole host of content. The stuff that we’ve got coming up will be for all of the patrons.
So even if you’re subscribed to just a $1 level, you will still be able to have access to some of the bonus content that we’ve got coming up, which again, I’m very excited about and specifically as it relates to Black Adam, Doc and I have been discussing something pretty cool that is just gonna be for the patrons.
So again check it out. And for those of you who are already there, as always a gracious, gracious thank you. We as, as always, do appreciate the support as all of the episodes we have coming up have been selected by our present level patrons. So looking forward to some of those topics. If you like what you hear and you want to get some more stuff, you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.
Ad keeps on the couch. Got some cool stuff. I’m mostly active on Twitter. We also have a Discord server. If you are a Discord person and you have an account, links in the show notes, you can join the fan community. We’ve been talking about TV, movies, some big announcements lately in the world of film and television.
You can go and join our discussions there and I’m sure once Black Adam comes out, we will have something there as well to discuss. So that’s gonna wrap it up for me, Doc.
Doc Issues: You know, usually I get nervous when we do episodes ahead of time because I, I really worry that we’re gonna connect to the audience or not.
At this time. I had. No doubt whatsoever because it was determined by fate.
Anthony: And there you have it. For doc issues, I’m Anthony Sytko. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next week.