“Inferno” is now a video game, with a brawny, armor-clad Dante as its protagonist…The game’s creators say there’s an audience for it. Their research showed that most people had heard of “Inferno” but few knew what it was about. This, they say, gave them license to make a few improvements.
— The New York Times
JOYCE’S “ULYSSES”: THE VIDEO GAME
TAGLINE: “Yes, yes, yes! Die, die, die!”
CHARACTER: You’re Leopold Bloom, an advertising executive. Somebody’s stole your wife’s affections. Somebody’s gonna pay.
MISSION: Fight your way through a nightmarish re-creation of the streets of Dublin that anticipates the rise of Frommer’s. Rescue your wastrel young friend Stephen Dedalus from the fleshpots of Nighttown. You’ve got twenty-four hours—just like Jack Bauer!
WEAPONS: Stream of consciousness, mock-epic poetry, a lucky potato.
POWER-UPS: Drinking, gambling, whoring, rejecting God.
BOSS DEMON: The sexually voracious Molly Bloom. Many brave men have been lost in the Bermuda Triangle between her treacherous thighs. Tip: she has a weakness for roses like the Andalusian girls wear in their hair. Bring her a bouquet—then blow her away!
HIDDEN LEVEL: “The Odyssey,” by Homer.
CHEAT CODE: Ctrl-S unlocks the subconscious.
SOUNDTRACK: “A Day In The Life” by the Beatles, “In The Name Of Love” by U2, anything by the Pogues.
RATING: M for Mature Audiences
Robert Brenner is a humorist, critic, and ventriloquist. His work has been published in New York Magazine, Open Salon (open.salon.com/blog/robert_brenner), and Happy.