Capes on the Couch Transcripts Issue 190 – Jack Russell Transcript

Issue 190 – Jack Russell Transcript

Anthony: Hello and welcome to Capes on the Couch where comments get counseling. I’m Anthony Sytko.

Doc Issues: And I’m Dr. Issues.

Anthony: This is issue number 190 and we are far removed from Halloween, but we’re going to be talking werewolf, werewolf by night. Jack Russell, a character that is tangentially related to another character that is near and dear to my heart.

One Mark Spector, AKA Moon Knight. But before we begin This is not Storm. Completely forgot when we were going through the episodes and we had our list. And then it wasn’t until I was starting to get ready for the next episode and looked over and at the list of characters, and I was like, Oh, we totally forgot Jack Russell was on the list, even though he Ironically, Storm would be much more timely given X Men 97 and the announcement of the new series, but you know, we’ll get there.

Also want to apologize for delay in the episodes. Doc and I are going through stuff individually, but it’s just kind of impacted our, our ability to get together and record our headspace, our mindset, Doc has been going through some stuff with work and I’m, I’m Reliving the 80s in the sense that I am once again obsessed with Drake’s Cakes.

And by that, I mean, I’ve been listening to BBL Drizzy videos. Nonstop. Some of you will get that reference and you will be laughing hysterically and the rest of you be going. I don’t know what the hell Anthony’s talking about. I’m not even really, I’m not really even invested in the Drake’s Kendrick feud.

But that BBO Jersey beat is so goddamn catchy.

Doc Issues: I was gonna say such is the state of the world. So,


Anthony: So. Well, I sit here with my yams deserve a trophy. Also a reminder that Shenanigan registration is now open. We still don’t know exactly when we’re going to be doing our back in a panel, but the registration is open now for folks to go and register June 22nd, 23rd in Parsippany, New Jersey.

We will be doing a panel on Baccano at Shenanigan. So go to the website. We’ll have links in the show notes and check it out. In the interest of getting underway. Let’s get started and jump into the background.

Jack Russell, werewolf by night, created by a committee, ha ha ha, of very talented creators Roy Thomas, Jeannie Thomas, Jerry Conway, and Mike Plough, in Marvel Spotlight number two, February 1972. So, Jacob Rousseff is the son of Gregor Rousseff, a Transylvania baron, whose ancestor was bitten by a werewolf who was working for Vlad Dracula back in 1795.

Gregor acquired the Darkhold and read some portions of it, triggering a latent curse and turning him into a werewolf. After he was killed, his wife Laura moved to America and remarried her brother in law Philip Russell, and Jacob Rousseff became Jack Russell. So Jack’s curse took effect on his 18th birthday, and shortly thereafter his family’s driver sabotaged his mother’s car to crash under Philip’s orders because Philip was connected with the committee.

And we’ll, we’ll find out about more about them in just a moment. But before Laura died, she told Jack the truth about his heritage and made him promise not to take revenge on Philip. She did not make him promise not to take out revenge on the driver though. So. Yeah, so he spent most of the next few years on the run from the committee who wanted to capture him and use him for their own purposes.

Among the many people hired by the committee was one Mark Spector, aka Moon Knight. And that is where Moon Knight made his comics debut in Werewolf by Night number 32 in 1975. And I’m fortunate enough to have a very low grade, non, non slabbed copy of it, but thanks to my wife, who managed to not get sniped on an eBay bid many years ago I am very grateful that I do, in fact, own a copy of Werewolf by Night Number 32.

So Mark managed to defeat Jack and bring him to the committee before having a change of heart. And he teamed up with Jack to escape and put the hurting on some of the committee members. So not going to delve too much into a lot of the a lot of the stories because frankly, a lot of werewolf by night stories through a good portion of his history are kind of like the 70s Hulk TV show where he just kind of goes from town to town.

So he spends a good chunk of the eighties. He’s on a motorcycle. He’s driving around the country. He’s wearing a leather jacket and no shirt underneath. He’s got like long hair. It’s a whole thing. Speaking of the Hulk, he does battle with the Hulk. And then his father’s spirit tells him he must accept his beastly nature or die.

So he goes, cool, I will do that. Thanks for the advice, hop. And he gains control over his transformation and abilities. Unfortunately, this control did not last and he began seeing visions of hell during his transformation. So this drove him to alcoholism and suicidal thoughts until he encountered a woman similarly afflicted and she was under siege by a small town.

It was a group of werewolves and they were just kind of living their life, doing their thing. And it was a small town and they like literally with the pitchforks and torches and they were like, we’re going to get these folks out of here. And he met this, this woman and they said, We can’t live like this anymore.

So they killed the leaders of this angry mob. And they said, you know, we’re going to help each other. We’re going to live free. So he was given a vaccine by Michael Morbius. It’s Morbin time. And that helps him regain control over his abilities and transformation. And he joined the Midnight Suns and now his mindset is one of acceptance.

He’s determined to find other quote unquote monsters around the world and help them the way that he had been helped like man thing and, and so many of the other creatures. That exist in the Marvel universe. One of these creatures actually involves the son of Wolfsbane, AKA Rainn Sinclair. She rejected the child because it was feral and she’s Catholic and it’s a whole thing.

And he’s like, I’m going to take care of this kid. I hope you out. Much more recently, he slept with Deadpool’s wife. And so Wade decides to take a blunderbuss and blow his head off. It grows back, but he does look like a cub for a while. Like a cub head. On a grown ass wolf body. It’s kind of weird, but also funny.

It’s Deadpool. Don’t take it too seriously. That’s the long and the short of it. Like I said, this is not a situation where we’re going to go, okay. And then he went with this guy and then they did this and yada, yada, a lot of drifting, a lot of just like wandering the country and, you know, sad yada, yada. So now let’s jump into the issues.

So the theme for Jack Russell this week is a sheep in wolf’s clothing, ba-dum bump. Thank you very much. So first I want to talk about he’s. The more recent development, because here’s a character who really has gone through the wringer over the past 50 plus years.

He, he’s kind of seen it all. He’s done it all. You know, when he started off, he was this, this teenager who was dragged into supernatural stuff. And he was just like, I want nothing to do with this. I got to find a cure. And then he was again on the motorcycle, he’s driving all over the place. And then he’s an alcoholic and he’s suicidal.

And he’s like, I’m looking for a fight. Somebody, please kill me. And then he’s like, Hey, you know what? The world doesn’t care for monsters. I’m a monster. I’m gonna be nice and help these people out. So it’s, it’s nice to see the development over the 50 years of the character. And he’s reached an acceptance of his werewolf nature, even if the world hasn’t.

Doc Issues: Yep, so

That’s the nature of growth, or at least I hope it is. It’s not saying that you’re perfect or that your hair is perfect. Sorry. Got to start right out of the gate, huh? Anyway, it implies that you do not have to continue with the same emotional state that you had when a negative event occurred.

You do not have to continue to harbor the negative thoughts that you had when you get bad news or don’t get the result of something that you, you, you didn’t want to happen in the first place.

You can actually find ways to take difficult situations. And later on, use them as learning opportunities so that when you see a similar situation happen, you first don’t repeat what caused or may have caused part of the problem to begin with. And you actually can be instructive to other people so that they also don’t have to experience what you have.

And who knows, it might actually be. A better outcome. I can’t guarantee that because although that’s what we want, I think it’s more important to focus on the process of what’s going on rather than just the results, because so many external factors are beyond any one person’s control. That is amazing.

And Jack deserves all the kudos in the world for it. The problem is the world didn’t change. And I’m not saying that flippantly. I’m saying that that is going to be an ongoing struggle. And that is incredibly common to the human existence. To use the colloquialism, and I’m once again, not saying this lightly, it’s great if you get over something.

There’s no law that says you won’t have to get over that again, because other people may not see things the way you do, or they may not have the same mindset that you do when it comes to approaching a similar issue. And if you have to interact with that person, then you’re going to have to use every tool that you have available to yourself so that.

You don’t drag yourself back down to whatever previous previous experience or previous mindset that you had before. And that does happen. I’ve definitely seen it. Not to beat yourself up about it if it happens, but at the same time, not to get exhausted and defeated, even when you do face it again and quote unquote win, whatever that means.

So Jack is, is an inspiration in that sense, but it would be foolish to say that it’s a permanent victory. I don’t really think that exists. And so. in a world that’s ever changing, then I would say the opportunity is for continued adaptation and growth or just reverting back to what caused the problems to begin with.

I know which way I’d want to go.

Anthony: Yeah. We say all the time on the show, recovery is not linear. Your growth is not going to be linear. And to that end,

the only constant is change. So even if you. You get over that hill, you best that demon, you do whatever it is that you needed to do. It’s not like, all right, that was great, it was fantastic, and now I never have to deal with that again.

Eh, eh, not gonna happen. And it’s a credit to Jack. He basically admits at one point that

he’s, he’s kind of gone through, I think in one book he says he’s gone through all five stages of grief. And he’s like, now I’ve just reached acceptance. Like I’ve done, I’ve done the anger. I’ve done the bargaining.

I’ve done the denial. I’ve done all of it. I’m at acceptance now because

anything else is just, it’s not helpful. And especially when you’re dealing with a

particular problem like Jack, so much of his feral state and some of the transformations is tied to his emotional state. And so, If that’s the case, if you know that getting worked up and getting super angry is just going to make it that much harder, is going to make your transformations that much worse, is going to make it that much more literally and physically painful, then you have every incentive to reach that point of acceptance because anything else is, is futile and it’s just, it’s self defeating.

And I think that mindset applies to Everyone, regardless of whether you’re dealing with lycanthropy or not, you know, that

worry excessively worrying about whatever your problems are doesn’t actually make them better. It doesn’t

make you more equipped to handle them. And it certainly doesn’t lessen the, the impact, at least not in any meaningful sense.

And again, I’m not saying go through life with this laissez faire, hakuna matata mindset of just, okay, I’m just not going to worry about anything anymore and just keep my head in the clouds. But it’s, it’s to excess, which is where Jack spent a good portion of his life is, is dangerous and, and just further self defeating.

So yeah. And on that note, I think that’s a nice segue into the second issue and trigger warnings for folks that may be dealing with one or either of these things. We’re going to be talking about substance abuse, and we’re going to be talking about suicidality. And here’s a guy who for decades, or at least maybe not decades, plural, but a good portion of his real time existence, ignoring the floating timeline of Marvel Universe, but the real time existence was either You know, drowning his sorrows in a bottle, wanting to die so he didn’t have to be a werewolf anymore, or both.

And so that is very much in the earlier stages of grief, the anger, the denial, et cetera, et cetera. And not the healthiest way to live.

Doc Issues: Oh, that’s an understatement. So I’m about to go on a tangent. That’s a warning right now. So this is a real life thing. For whatever reason, my daughter has gotten into wanting to watch 80s movies or, you know, around that time period in general, and I suggested a movie, Dead Poets Society and spoiler alert for a movie that old, but one of the characters in that movie does commit suicide, but the reason I’m bringing this up is because.

My daughter does what I do, which is I don’t care about spoilers. I will look at all the information available for anything like immediately, and it doesn’t ruin the experience for me. So she looked up that, like what happens, but now she was brought, she brought into the idea of like, Oh, but how did that character get to that point?

And I paused the movie when that character, who’s a student, is talking to the teacher that he respects the most. And that character says two words that are the most important, I’m trapped. It had to do with family dynamics. He wanted to do something with his life that his father essentially forbid him to do, and he did it anyway.

But even before that happens and before all that, the two words that he said were, I’m trapped. And when a person feels like there is no alternative, when there is no hope, no future, when Nothing else can be done. That means no one can help either. When a person sees no opportunities, then in theory, the logical conclusion is death.

That is a complete fallacy because there are so many unknowables in the world to say that you have therefore come to the one knowable thing is not fair to yourself or to the people around you. So if anyone is listening and is feeling that way, please understand that actually is where I’m coming from and that’s what I truly believe.

You are not alone. This is not the last time you should hear my voice or anyone else’s voice and please seek the help that you need right now.

I can also appreciate. A character like Jack basically saying, but I got this thing. I mean, I’m a werewolf. What am I supposed to do with that? Well, let’s look at coping mechanisms. Oh, you went to the one that basically is a chemical shortcut so that you release a certain number of neurotransmitters, including dopamine that allow for your body to experience a different state than what it already is in, because that’s the only way your mind can take it.

That actually, once again, from a certain standpoint, I. Can see the logic in that. The problem is alcohol itself is a depressant and therefore, while you may get the temporary relief, especially when it comes to the anxiety and tension related to whatever is causing the situation or the anger or other intense emotions that get dampened by the immediate release of those other chemicals, that is, forget a band aid, that’s like literally trying to put.

You know, a stitch in a compound fracture, it’s not going to, to address anything in the long run and it ends up forming a very vicious loop. This is something now I, I don’t have metaphors. I don’t have tangents even. I am just saying I’ve seen so many people, whether it becomes a chicken or the egg thing, sometimes I seen patients where they’ve come in the ER because they’ve been drinking and every time they come in the ER, they have a high blood alcohol level and they report that they’re suicidal and, Sometimes the story is that there was a negative event that led to suicidal thoughts, and therefore they were drinking just to drown it out.

Other times, the person actually was having a pretty standard day, but because they are, they have this chemical component with relate with addiction, they end up drinking and the depressant side of the alcohol leads to further depression and suicidal thoughts. So it can happen both ways. Either way,

it’s pointing out that you are not giving yourself and not giving the people around you the opportunity to have a different experience. You’re locking it in. You are saying that this is the only way that things can be, and therefore, everything else needs to be shut out in a black box. That’s just not fair.

You’re worth so much more than that. You’re a human being worthy of dignity and respect. Even if you’ve. Decided that you’re not going to give it to yourself. If you still need that hope, that’s fine. We’ll have the hope for you. Just recognize that whether it’s the withdrawal symptoms after you stop drinking, because that’s not fun, or the seizures that lead to the medical condition that you need to be medically hospitalized, or the consequences of family members that actually save your life so that you don’t choke on your own vomit, or it’s Just simply the random person that sees you at work and says, maybe you ought to call someone and go home for the day or go wherever you need to go to make sure that you get back on track or calling your sponsor in AA, going to that rehab that you’ve been putting off or the detox that you’ve called and every time they say they don’t have a bed, you, you think to yourself, what’s the point?

There are so many different avenues that this can go down. And that’s my point. That’s just, and that’s just on the. Quote unquote, pessimistic side, let alone the optimism of all the people that actually have walked similar paths and had magnificent outcomes and the medication management that could be done.

And I’ll talk about that in treatment. We’ll get to that, but I apologize for the rambling. I, I do feel strongly about this and, and I know the audio is probably really bad because I keep moving my head, but that’s because I I’m in a certain headspace where I hope you can hear it in my voice that I really do wish everyone the best, and if.

At any point, you feel like this is the only path. I, I swear to you, you, you, I recognize you don’t know me from anybody else in the world, but if you’re listening to this, you got to have some level of trust. And I’m telling you, there’s, there’s so many alternative paths. After all, if you’re reading comics, you know, there’s so many what ifs, so many alternate universes, you know, just go ahead, try and put yourself in one of them and, See what positive things can happen.

Anthony: Absolutely. I have walked some dark paths in my life. I’ve not been shy about talking about them on this show or just in my life in general. And I, I never medicated through substance abuse.

And that was largely because I had far too many family members who did. So that was something that kind of got scared into me or out of me, so to speak. For the longest time.

I was straight edge, frankly, through most of my, a lot of my early twenties, because I was convinced that because of my family history and everything that I, I just couldn’t even, I didn’t even want to try.

And I realized, and some of it was also just on the ego and the whole, you know, I was like, I was like, heel CM punk, like I’m straight edge and that makes me better than you. Anyway, the, the idea of medicating to avoid the reality and, the depression and things of that nature,

Is very real to a lot of people.

We either have done it ourselves or we know someone who had or who continues to do so. And yeah, I just, I, I echo

everything that, that you said, Doc. That’s why we do this show is in the hopes that something we say somewhere in, in, under the depths of the Bad jokes and the Hamilton references and everything else that’s somewhere buried in all of that is a nugget somewhere with a character or a discussion or something that that sticks with people and says, you know what?

Yeah, I’m dealing with some stuff.It could be worse. And if these people can get out of it, so can I. And the, the hope and the love that We, we share

and that we have for our, our listeners, our perspective listeners, anybody, anybody out there, humanity, especially in, in a time like we’re just seeing now in society where there is just so much, so, so much, and it is far too easy to succumb to cynicism or nihilism with everything that’s going on around the world.

And to just look at everything and go, fuck it. What’s the point? To not do that on a daily basis is is its own fucking superpower, as far as I’m concerned. And I think back to that, that adage

of, you know, you have survived 100 percent of your bad days and yeah, it’s corny. It sounds like bullshit.

But it’s true. If you’re listening to this, it means you have survived to this point. If you are one of the people that is listening to this podcast right now, you have survived. You have made it. You have defied the odds, frankly, in so many ways. And I don’t see any reason why you should give that up and why you should stop.

That goes for everybody. If, if you’ve gone this far, who knows what could happen tomorrow. You could say, yeah, it could, could suck even worse. Yeah. Or, or it could be fantastic. I guess we’ll never know. So you might as well stick around and find out. So,

so the third issue and I, I’m just, I mean like we, we could honestly just keep going on and on about this one just because we, we obviously feel so very, very strongly about it.

But the issue for Jack is it’s less of a. Problem per se, I mean, it’s one of those things like it could be a problem depending on how you view it or it could not, but he’s a drifter who’s not attached to any one place for too long. For, for a majority of his, his history, again, one, one of the constants, no matter what his headspace has been is he is, he is a rolling stone and he’s going around, he’s either looking for a way to die or he’s looking for somebody to help.

Either way, there is no moss growing under his feet.

Doc Issues: So. I apologize to anyone that doesn’t know my style already, but I really do flip to humor pretty quickly and the non sequiturs come. So you, you happened to mention Rolling Stone. So I want your take on something. Tangent again, in the song Papa was a Rolling Stone.

Do you take that literal? Like, do you, do you think it was just all he left us was alone, meaning he left us isolated? Or do you think? It was much more transactional. All he left us was, because you could picture this, a loan, like debt. You know, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve always wondered about that.

Anthony: I never pondered that second option until just now. I never heard it as all he left us was a loan, meaning figuratively in debt. I

Doc Issues: See, not many people do, but the few, but the few, but the few people that do, that’s the point. When you put it that way, it’s like, not just saying you skipped town on us.

It’s like, you made us 10 times worse with that. You absolute bastard. Okay. Anyway. All right. I’ll get back to the, I’ll get back to the, to the topic at hand. Because it was when we did one of the Fuchikans and I admitted it about talking about Spike as well. I feel a little seen and for some of you, you may wonder like, Doc, you have a wife and child.

Do you have a house that you’ve been in now for almost a decade? You have had the same job at the same network for the past 14 years. How on earth could you consider yourself a drifter? I’m. Saying that almost on a spiritual level where I thought that’s what my life would be if it weren’t for those anchor points.

And by anchor points, I mean foundational roots, not anchor as in something that is sinking me. I really want to make that clear. So I appreciate the even handedness with which Anthony described this because Many people automatically hear the word drifter and do think that there’s a negative connotation to it and it doesn’t have to be that way or the old saying, you know, not all who wander are lost.

It comes back to mindset, right? It comes back to the idea of are you able to establish stable connections with people? Other people, because yes, if you are completely alone and isolated and unable to form strong emotional contacts, that’s problematic. If you’re unable to fend for your basic needs, that’s problematic.

If you cannot acknowledge that those things are problems, that’s problematic. I’m bringing it up that way dramatically, but truthfully, because for example, there’s a huge homeless population and part of the reason it exists is because of inadequately treated mental health concerns. That’s, that’s the truth.

That’s the reality that I know I see on a daily basis. And many people have it in their families and don’t know what to do. So, so there’s, there’s a real concern there, but for the person that enjoys exploring the world, that enjoys new experiences, that wants to say every single day they meet someone that they haven’t before, and they have the expectation that not all of them are going to go well, but more often than not, they’re going to go okay.

And sometimes they may be one of the best experiences they ever had in their life. I think that’s a positive. A person with A creative open mind that is always looking to learn and therefore puts themselves in situations and opportunities that they otherwise wouldn’t have. That sounds amazing to me. A person that shows the dynamism to think on their feet, to solve problems that other people can’t because they bring a perspective that people that are too close to certain issues wouldn’t even be able to, to contemplate.

That’s an art form. That’s almost a superpower in, in modern society. So no, I don’t automatically think that it’s a problem, especially if it’s with intention and by intention, I don’t just mean I’m trying to run away from everything in my life that’s negative as opposed to running to the things that you think are going to enrich your life, as long as it’s not.

So grandiose or so, or so maladaptive that you think you’re going to be the next David Koresh. I mean, I I’m willing to explore that other side of it and acknowledge the risks. Yes, of course. I appreciate that. Not everything’s going to, to always pan out the way we want them to. And we can’t just try and find the next Shangri La or fountain of youth or Nirvana or whatever other thing.

And by the way, that wasn’t a shot at anybody who’s religious or, you know, have their beliefs. That’s not my point. I’m just saying, I’m thankful that we have a world where if you have your wits about you, you have your spiritual nature, your soul about you, you have the mind and energy to pursue it,

you can literally have your home wherever your heart. Not everybody can accomplish that as simple as I’m making it sound. But for those of you who do, bless you. For those of you who worry or who I’ve tried it and it doesn’t fit. Or for the people that really do care about you, you may have to acknowledge that it’s not working.

Then I hope you allow for some of those roots to take hold in a more stable way so that it’ll work out a little better the next time.

Anthony: Yeah, it’s, it’s interesting.

I see people who are like, Oh, I’m going to live out of a van and just travel across the country and everything. And I’m like, that sounds really great. And it sounds freeing and wonderful. With the wife and kids, whatever. But even before that, I was like, yeah, that sounds wonderful.

And then I know myself and doc, I know you’re laughing. Cause she’d be like, yeah, I would last maybe 48 hours on this. And I’d be going, no, no, this ain’t for me. No, it’s one of those things that, again, it, it sounds appealing and it, and it really does appeal to that part of me. That is a, a, but a sliver of who I am.

And to, to show deference to that sliver would be doing a disservice to the other 95 percent of my inherent baked in personality. So, I mean, every once in a while I throw out a bone just to do something outlandish and, you know, offbeat or spontaneous,

whatever, but, but then no. So, kudos to anybody who can pull it off.

If that’s who you are, more power to you. You know, you do you boo boo. I will stay here in my home and enjoy and revel in the routine that I have, because that’s what keeps me sane. So we’re going to take a break, plug a couple of shows and we get back. We’ll get into treatment stick around.

And we’re back. So treatment, so treatment in universe is a silver bullet, right? Wow.

Doc Issues: Wow. Wow. And no I appreciate that, but geez, dude, what, why’d you, why’d you have to go there?

Anthony: I mean, it’s, you know, the magic bullet. It, it, you know, the one shot solves everything. Right? I’m not talking about the literal silver bullet. I mean

Doc Issues: Oh, oh, oh boy.

So I’m gonna go, I’m gonna go. I actually did give this significant thought because. I’m not saying Jack needs treatment in universe as Jack, and yes, you’re right that we have to address this whole lycanthropy thing. What I’m going for, though, is the thing that everyone knows you need to truly tame a beast.

You need kindness. You know, so what I’m trying to say is we have so many things, whether they’re magical or locational or whatever. I mean, why don’t we just have the greatest, almost like a doggy spa session, you know, like gets to wash the fur and just, you know, get nice and shined up and, you know, can be all floofy and, you know, maybe put in like a, I don’t know, little.

Bow in the hair somewhere, kind of glamp it up a bit, you know, like really pamper, trim the claws. Although I understand that depending on what type of claws they are, that’s not necessarily good for a lot of, animals that have claws, but I’m just saying like, just, just go all out with the grooming and, make the werewolf feel, you know, feel loved.

Give them a bunch of, doggie treats and, make sure it’s all organic. I don’t know.

Anthony: Really? All the treatment options, all the tools you have at your disposal. And you go with treat yourself

Doc Issues: as opposed to a bullet. Yes.

Anthony: It was a metaphor.

Doc Issues: So is mine.

Anthony: We’re just sitting here yelling at each other. So it’s, Oh, she came down in a bubble, bro.

Oh, bye. That one’s for my sister. She, she thinks that is, is like the greatest internet

video ever. Anywho, out of universe, then

formerly suicidal alcoholic. Now he’s a drifter. He’s come to terms with his past. He’s done some unsavory things.

He’s seen some stuff. Now he’s like, you know what? I’m cool. I’m good. All right. I’m not gonna, I’m not going to stress over it anymore.

Doc Issues: Yeah. Yeah. If we’re talking in maintenance phase, let’s first make sure many people fall into this. I like to call it the, the flight to health. Often comes after a crisis, such as either a, suicidal ideation or suicide attempt or, or whatever.

And we see it commonly in the hospital. It’s like, Oh, I don’t even know why I was suicidal to begin with. I feel great. It’s like, okay, I’m so glad I’m happy for you. And I genuinely am. So what things can we do so that it doesn’t get to that point again? Oh, I don’t need much. I’m good now. Like, I understand in your current mindset, that’s the way you feel.

So let’s go over all the things that. When this does happen again, and yes, I, I will say it’s likely if you’ve had it before, there’s a good chance that it happens again. Regarding ideation, it doesn’t have to be an attempt, doesn’t have to even be a relapse, but if you’re, if you even have the thoughts that you may drink again, that may happen as well.

So, I mentioned that I, I don’t want to be that person that sees something and then doesn’t actually talk about it. With regards to medication management for substance treatment for alcohol, there are a lot of options, and I don’t think people realize this. In the old days, all they had was something called disulfiram, which was, it’s literally an adversive.

When you drink alcohol, your body doesn’t produce the enzyme to break it down. And so it literally becomes toxic and poisonous to you in the moment. And so you puke. So the idea is, hey, don’t drink because since you’re taking this medication, you’ll just puke. The problem is not everybody cares. And so they will still drink.

And they end up medically hospitalized from all the puking. So no, that’s, it’s not as commonly used. Although some patients, if you really beg for it and if they’re really, really bought into it, that’s an option. More common nowadays is Acamprosate which is a medication that is taken anywhere between two and three times a day and is literally directed at the cravings for alcohol.

And as with most medications like that. The main issue is you’re telling me I got to take something two or three times a day. Like, why can’t I just take a shot then? And no, that’s, that’s kind of the point, it’s kind of burdensome to remember to take that many pills. The most common one now that’s available in both a pill form and what’s called a long acting injection form, meaning you would just take it once a month is naltrexone.

Now for many people that’s I was gonna say in this country, but it’s true around the world. You may be familiar with naltrexone for stopping or reversing opioid abuse, and that’s still used for that as well. That’s its cousin the lone, which is the immediate thing that now comes in a spray, saves someone’s life if they use something like heroin or other opiates.

No, this is the, this is the one that you can either take as a pill once a day. Or like I said, a long acting injection and because it blocks the opioid receptors, meaning those things in your nervous system that get rewarded when they get loaded up with, you know, these these opioids that give you that instant gratification that we’re all talking about.

That’s the whole nature of addiction. When that gets blocked, like, well, you’re not going to get the reward pathway. Which means you’re not getting the reward pathway. Think about that in that sense. In terms of some of the dulling that may, you may feel if you take something like that. But it’s life saving.

No, no question about it. So those are medication options. Also remember the emotional supports. Whether that’s the more social gatherings of AA and NA meetings with their sponsors and following their guides in the book. Or if it’s much more. Open therapy with, you know, individual counseling. If it’s with what’s called a CADC certified addiction and drug abuse counselor.

Those are all options related on the substance side. And all of that’s just dealing with the substance side. Obviously dealing with the mood, the depression, the anger, whatever else was going on. Those actual events that happened in the past that you say that is over with, and yet you get that phone call from a family member that brings it up again.

Or you get exposed to something that you didn’t expect that was unrelated to that, but for whatever reason, you just feel a certain way. These things happen unexpectedly. If they happen expectedly, then we could just schedule them and then avoid what’s in the schedule. So I appreciate when people come in and they’re at that steady state.

It’s amazing. It’s wonderful. I hope and pray that it lasts as long as possible. The one problem is I can’t predict anything else in the world. So until I get that part down, I’m always here for support.

Anthony: Yeah. Precognition would certainly make treatment vastly easier, but unfortunately that’s limited to the in universe and you chose to use it on a doggy spa. As opposed to a silver bullet. Understood. Understood. I don’t feel like yelling anymore. So

with all that being said, let’s hope that Doc’s session takes place during the day and certainly not under the light of a full moon when we get Jack Russell on Doc Issues couch.

Doc Issues: Hello, Jack. I’m Dr. Issue.

Anthony: Hi. Man, I could have used you a long time ago.

Doc Issues: Thanks? So what could I do for you now?

Anthony: Well, just hear me out. I’ve, I’ve hesitated to do any therapy because I didn’t think anybody would listen.

Doc Issues: Aha, so you picked me. So my reputation precedes me.

Anthony: Well, you never answer any of my calls or my emails.

Doc Issues: I can be scant in my availability, yes.

Wouldn’t that be a deterrent, then?

Anthony: Well, every review I read said that you are the most patient psychiatrist they’ve ever met. But, you’re also hard to track. I

like that. So, maybe you can tolerate my story.

Doc Issues: My goal is more than tolerance, I want patients to thrive.

You know, sometimes you have to crawl, then walk, then run.

Anthony: Yeah, you got that right. So I did my homework. I know this is confidential as long as I’m not a threat, right? What if I told you that there’s only a certain number of nights where I was a threat, but I kept everyone safe with an airtight plan? Makes sense, right?

Doc Issues: I guess.

Anthony: And what if I told you that I even went so far as to meditate, to harness that rage in a form that was productive?

Are you with me so far?

Doc Issues: Is this a

metaphor for, like, male menopause, or?

Anthony: Hell, man, I even found an alternative healer to basically cure me. I mean, that’s some wild stuff, huh? I’m sure patients come in spewing all kinds of bullshit to you, but I’m really serious about this.

Doc Issues: You sound like an infomercial right now.

What’s your angle? Are you trying to promote some woo woo healthy positivity, or what? I’m confused. You’re way more upbeat than I thought you’d be. All right, there’s more to this. I let me, I’ll scroll through your emails.

Anthony: Better late than never.

Doc Issues: Anyway all right, no wonder I blew you off. I mean, you sound, ah, geez.

You sent me an autobiography that reads like Anne Rice decided to make out with Kafka.

Anthony: So,

a bit melodramatic then. I mean, come on, cry me a fucking river, Doc. Excuse me for telling you who I am so you have a basis to work from.

Doc Issues: Therapy is supposed to be more than just venting.

You say you have all these tools to, wow, still scrolling. This is so long. Survive with lycanthropy. You could have just said from the start, I’m a werewolf.

Anthony: Well, you know, you always use all these vocab words in your writing. So I was just trying to match you. And by the way, how dare you try and shame a patient?

I’ve come a long way, you know?

Doc Issues: No shame, no blame. Just, I get this a lot. You want to connect on a human level. That’s That’s awesome, man. You know, good for you. I’m impressed actually, because you’re clearly putting the proper energy into this. But there is a way to swing too far on that pendulum. All right.

I want to be your trusted professional, but I’m not your buddy. There’s a difference. Let’s focus on your accomplishments so far, since that’s what you seem to. Really be, you know, hell bent on out of the gate. Cool.

Anthony: All right. All right. So first

off, I survived a family that sometimes turned feral. There’s been lots of reconciliation, but my Christmas card list is pretty fucking short if you get my meaning.

Doc Issues: Great.

Anthony: I am on the sober


Doc Issues: Wonderful.

Anthony: I can live in my own skin and fur.

Ah, a little further east than that. Nevermind. Bad joke.

Doc Issues: I’m not rushing you. Even worse joke.

Anthony: So you do

have a bright side. Anywho, what I’m trying to say is, I don’t have everything figured out, but I’ve taken care of the boulders.

Now I need to take care of the smaller rocks, the pebbles, the sand. You get it, right?

Doc Issues: Yeah, yeah,

Much better clarity. All right, I’ll, I’ll, okay. I’ll take you on as a patient, but under one condition.

Anthony: No werewolf?

Doc Issues: How’d you guess?

Anthony: Nah, just a

hunch. And oh, here’s the info for my local pharmacy.

Doc Issues: Whoa, whoa.

I mean, we just had one session. I don’t, I don’t think you need a prescription.

Anthony: Well, it’s the only one I know who’s willing to incorporate silver compounds.

Doc Issues: Well, that’s either a dark backup plan or the weirdest joke of this encounter.

Anthony: Why not both?

Well, I think that went well. And dare I say, maybe even after a session, you could meet him for a pina colada at Trader Vic’s.

Doc Issues: Oh, okay. That caught me off guard. Oh, wow.

Anthony: Did he enter the session with, with a dish of beef chow mein?

Doc Issues: Oh yeah. Yeah. You know, it’s, it’s, it’s hair. Perfect. I know. I know. I mean, see, the problem is. I don’t want to encourage his drinking. Think about it, man. You know, like, especially since afterwards it’d be really tough to give him hair of the dog.

Anthony: Well, now you’re just messing with a son of a bitch.

So recommended reading is the Legion of Monsters series. Well, I could suggest, you know, like the OG werewolf by night. Series from the 70s, but I like the Legion of Monster series. First off, it’s got Elsa Bloodstone, who we’ve done an episode on, and it’s just a fabulous character. I adore Elsa. It is much more focused on the, the current headspace of Jack, the acceptance, the, okay, I’m going to see, I’ve seen some stuff, but I’m here to help.

I’m not going to, I’m not going to do it. Everybody thinks I’m going to do it. Freak out, man. Kind of deal. So I, I just, I liked the way that he’s, he’s written in that. Plus it’s just, it’s got all the cool monsters in it. It’s got man thing and, and

yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s good stuff. It’s a cool, cool series.

So next episode’s Storm for, for real Wonder Woman and Shadow Man. So again, as a reminder, registration for Shenanigan is open. We’ll have the links on our website.

You can go and get the tickets there. June 22nd and 23rd in Parsippany, New Jersey. As soon as we know when our panel will be, we will post that on social media and our website. We are proud members of the Gonna Geek Network. So go to gonnageeknetwork. com and check out Better Podcasting, which has been going through a season of reviewing podcast hosts because they are choosing to move away from Libsyn which hosts our show.

And I gotta say I’ve been really listening to what Steven and SP have been saying and I’m like, Oh. Maybe it’s time for us to move then. Might not be a terrible idea. And you can check out Adventures in Aurelia and play comics. Much love to Chris and Sari. I swear we’re gonna get on your show these, one of these days.

Duck will message you back.

Doc Issues: It’ll happen, I swear.

Anthony: Even if I have to force him and strap him to his chair to get him to do it. He will do it. It’ll happen. I swear it will happen. All of our episodes are available on our website, capes on the couch. com. We are on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Tik TOK and threads at capes on the couch.

Subscribe. You can also listen to us on YouTube. I know folks like to leave us comments and we’ve got a fair amount of subscribers as of late on our YouTube channel. So even though it’s just static imagery and the episodes, but I appreciate that. So wherever you listen to us is cool. I’m not going to.

Not going to hate on anybody for however it is that they choose to find us. If you really like what you hear, patreon. com slash capes on the couch. You can subscribe, unlock, uncensored material, additional content. We’ve got some cool stuff coming in the works for that.

So doc, before we head out,

Doc Issues: There’s nothing wrong with howling at the moon.

The problem really happens once the fangs and the claws come out.

Anthony: True story. For Doc Issues, I’m Anthony Sytko. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next time.

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