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Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication)

Hank Moody


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

A self-loathing, alcoholic writer attempts to repair his damaged relationships with his daughter and her mother while combating sex addiction, a budding drug problem, and the seeming inability to avoid making bad decisions.


Context

Promiscous women, drug problems, an incompetent masturbating agent, a broken family, extramarital children, a jail sentence, hard rappers, movie productions, rock stars, L.A., etc. Yes, this is another writeup of two years in the making being limited only to those above 18 years of age, heh!

Californication was a 2007-2014 TV series starring David Duchovny as dysfunctional, low-willpower writer Hank Moody. It was well-reviewed.


Background

  • Real Name: Henry James “Hank” Moody
  • Other Aliases: “Teach” (season 3)
  • Marital Status: Divorced
  • Known Relatives: Rebecca “Becca” Moody (daughter; 12 years old in Season 1), Levon Moody (son; 21 years old in Season 7), Al Moody (father, deceased), Karen Van Der Beek (longtime on-and-off girlfriend; Becca’s mother), Julia (ex-girlfriend; Levon’s mother)
  • Group Affiliation: None
  • Base Of Operations: Mobile, but mostly Los Angeles (formerly New York City)
  • Height: 6’½” Weight: 190 lbs Age: 49 years (in Season 1)
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: brown


Powers & Abilities

Hank is an excellent, even superb, writer when motivated, and capable of living relatively harmless through a very self-destructive existence. Naturally, he is well-read in literature and possesses numerous artistic talents, including musical talent.

He has a very strong natural charm with the ladies without even trying, a sort of animal magnetism perhaps.

While not physically trained he can take care of himself quite well in a fight, and of course also has a driver’s licence.

Decadent writer

Hank Moody writes very, very rarely. He’s too caught up in all the drugs, antics and problems that permeate every aspect of his life. He has written a couple of books, centralized around the topic of sex, an early one being South of Heaven, a portrait of the artist as a dirty young man.

Moody then got famous with his book God hates us all, which subsequently got turned into a movie called A Crazy Little Thing Called Love, which he didn’t approve of at all. Then followed a long period of chaos and writer’s block in his life (and it has actually never really stopped since).

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) haggard in the L.A. traffic

He also wrote a book named Fucking and punching – a memoire, which built upon his early experiences in L.A. including the affair with the underaged Mia. However, Mia submitted this manuscript herself and Hank had no choice but to let it pass as hers or be charged with statuatory rape.

Still, it was quite a lot later revealed that he was the true author of the piece and it now counts as one of his very best novels!

In recent years his drifting lifestyle has lent itself for being hired for various odd jobs as they are offered by his agent, Charlie: writing biographies (season 2), teaching writing (season 3), consulting in a movie production (season 4), writing song lyrics (seasons 5 and 6) and writing television series (Season 7).

Thus, after his original novels came Lew Ashby – a biography and then Californication, which became a #1 Times Best Seller. Every time he finishes a book he has the ritual of enjoying whisky, weed and some Warren Zevon (and I personally discovered this relaxing music through Hank Moody)


Video

The trailer for the first season. The video quality is disappointing but heh, at least that means you don’t have to open it full-size on another page. Because like Hank, it works better when it keeps it shrunk.


History

Hank Moody originally hails from New York city. His life had pretty much always been rather chaotic and filled with alcohol, drugs and women. He did, in fact, drop out of college six times. He was a brilliant writer down on his luck and now separated from his ex-girlfriend, whom he still loved and who he knew still harbored strong feelings for him, and his daughter, Becca.

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) painted into a corner with a beer and lingerie

Visual metaphor alert

Hank lacked direction, much to the chagrin of his agent Charlie Runkle, while Karen was set on marrying her new boyfriend Bill Lewis. This of course ticked off Moody who had proposed numerous times to Karen who had turned him down due to obvious reasons.

He met a young woman, Mia Lewis, in a bookstore who was reading his last book “Good hates us all” and she seduced him. They had a one-night stand and Mia punched him in the face upon achieving orgasm. Hank later, and soon, found out, upon visiting Becca that Mia was in fact Bill’s 16-years old daughter! Realizing his mistake, he naturally had to keep it a secret from everyone.

Stolen memories

Mia had known who he was – her favorite author – and she dreamt of being an author herself. Thus, Hank was blackmailed by Mia into helping her launch off her career as an author. Hank had finally overcome writer’s block and written a novel of his experiences in L.A. named Fucking and punching.

He had given the draft to Karen to read through, but she was busy planning the wedding with Bill, and so Mia instead took the opportunity to read it. Not only that, she rewrote it slightly and made a deal with Runkle’s secretary to publish it as her own work.

Moody, facing her and the secretary along Runkle had no choice except to loose the work or be accused of statutory rape. However, Hank had more important matters to think of and so managed to charm and seduce Karen into escaping from the wedding upon which he, Karen and Becca drove off into the sunset together (Season 1).

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) making faces in an aisle

However, a perfect ever after ending did not follow. Hank’s agent Charlie, who was caught filmed in a masturbatory scandal was kicked from the company. After a vasectomy, Hank and Karen attended a rough party at Lew Ashby’s, a record producer and legend. There Hank accidentally had cunnilingus with a woman that he in the dark believed was Karen.

The woman, Destiny, had been awaiting Ashby and did not take kindly to the matter and called Hank a mouth-rapist in front of everyone, which angered Karen greatly. Then Hank got into trouble with a police officer while on his way back home drunk and high. He spent the night in prison with his balls damaged from the fight with the officer.

There he again surprisingly met Ashby, who was there from false accusations of violence.

Sex and drugs and rock ‘n’ roll

Ashby was soon released, and he paid Hank’s bail in the morning and gave him a job proposition – to write a biography about Les Ashby. Hank, having few options, reluctantly agreed. While researching Ashby’s life, Hank was introduced to TV cook Chloe Metz and had sex with her.

All the while Hank’s unemployed agent Charlie had problems with his coke-addicted wife, Marcy Runkle, and tried out a brief career in porn of his own as a stunt cock, where he met young actress Daisy. He ended up financing a high class porn movie named Vaginatown.

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) looking glum with alcohol

Soon, Karen and Hank invited everyone to a dinner party at home. One of the guests, Sonja, was pregnant and it was soon revealed that the baby was allegedly Hank’s from a few months earlier when he and Karen were on a break. Sonja’s new boyfriend Julian, to whom Hank took an immediate dislike, would raise the baby as his own.

Then as Hank and Karen attempted to improve their relationship by a female therapist Hank later had sex with this therapist who just happened to be the mother of his daughter’s boyfriend. When the boyfriend discovered it Becca and Karen soon found out too, which again strained the relationship of Karen and Hank.

Hank’s daughter Becca had troubles with the boyfriend Damien, but in the end they got back together again, at least for a while.

Hank researched Lew’s life for the book while Lew lived his rock-n-roll lifestyle, had sex with groupies as well as Mia (who just tried to piss Hank off) and even tried to date Karen. Hank got upset, but once the things had been cleared up he even managed (after he had sex with her housemaid) to convince Lew’s ex-girlfriend Janie to agree to meet Lew once more.

Inching back toward Karen

However, Lew, celebrating, overdosed on cocaine before he could meet the ex and died. Hank went on to complete the book about Ashby, a guy who lived a wild life and had become his friend. Soon thereafter Sonja gave birth… to a black baby, and so Hank was not the father after all. Mia got great reviews for the book Hank had written and started a long tour around the country.

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) driving into the sunset crash metaphor

Visual metaphor alert.

Meanwhile, the agent Charlie had left his wife and tried to start a relationship with the (former?) pornstar Dasie, which didn’t work out so well. So Charlie was alone since Marcy wouldn’t want anything to do with him now either. Eventually, Karen and Hank got closer to each other again just as Karen got a new work in New York and had to leave Hank and Becca behind in L.A.. (Season 2).

Hank gets employed as a High School teacher in literature, with all the drama that ensues, while Runkle was hired as an agent by a new company and got a new boss in sexually voracious Sue Collini. With Karen away, Hank got to take care of Becca and it went fairly well despite Becca’s little experiments with Hank’s marijuana.

Hank went on to have brief “relationships” with a surfer girl, teacher’s aid Jill Robinson, the student Jackie and his employer Felicia Koons. Becca flew away to NYC to meet her mother and then Hank’s old perverted hometown buddy and idol, Zloz, showed up causing more trouble, but it was a good time for Hank, spending quality time with his best buddy again.

Zloz told Hank that he was dying and returned home soon again to his own family, just as Becca returned along Karen. Well, and the insane antics of Hank and Charlie and company went on for quite a while, and it’s all, in fact, pretty d-rn enjoyable! Watch the rest by yourself until a fairly interesting and inevitable ending! (Seasons 3-7).


Description

Hank is very often seen wearing sunglasses with a hangover and a bottle or cigarette in his hand and often wears rather trendy but inexpensive clothing. He has a anchor tattoo behind his left shoulder that says ’Karen’ & ’Becca‘. His voice usually sounds very relaxed, which gives him a somewhat suave impression.

Lastly, for whatever reason, he has the mojo, or an irresistible animal magnetism, that drive women wild for him wherever he is or whatever he does!


Personality

Psychological issues

Hank is a self-loathing, alcoholic, but complex character with a lot of psychological issues. While he has a strong personality and easily handles other strong personalities. He is also laid back and has bouts of low confidence at the same time. He is looking for his place in life, but happiness and peace constantly avoid him.

Hank Moody (David Duchovny in Californication) with his daughter

With his daughter

He is an excellent judge of character and can get along with practically anyone if he wants to. An author at heart he cares about the language and its proper use and can be called a libertarian. Not surprisingly, he has weird nightmares practically every night, or even dreams within dreams. He has hallucinations and dreams about Lew Ashby as moral guide and life advisor.

He has a reputation to be an absolute fucking nightmare to work with (and it’s true), always speaks his mind regardless of company.

Addiction, sex and bad habits

As a true character trait, Hank has severe problems with drinking and smoking. He is also a sex addict (but will not have sex with underage women as long as he knows their age although he sometimes has forgotten to ask like with Mia). He also sometimes take excesses into other heavier drugs when offered.

His greatest vice, however, is infidelity and unfaithfulness, and women just can’t leave him alone. Without having to do the least bit of work, scores of beautiful women just force themselves upon him – and he rarely protests against that unless it’s bad for his relationships with the ex-wife, his daughter or his agent.

Good qualities?

He would, however, never take advantage of a woman in a sordid state, he does at least have that much honor and respect. Still, he has actually revenge-fucked the wives of a few enemies, so yeah, he certainly has some issues. That said, when he sees a girl or woman getting badly treated he just lashes out from instinct; there is a hidden gentleman inside of him.

He likes all types of women, but is strongly against open relationships. His life is a chaotic mess but he doesn’t really care in the least. It’s a wonder that no cuckolded husband has yet shot him (Samurai Apocalypse almost did the job). For the bad times, he knows how to throw a good punch (and has been known to use Hero Points  in fisticuffs to quickly end fights).

Family life

Much of his time is spent on trying to get KAREN BACK! While emotionally cool, he thus most of the time he gets real jealous of anyone Karen spends her time with, and he also makes his best to sabotage any relationship she has with other men. He can be very hard on people, but ALWAYS tries to take care of Becca and to keep bad company away from her.

In fact, he practically always prioritizes Becca before anything else (hence the Dependent Drawback, in DC Heroes terms). He firmly believes that children should be taken good care of, and so he gave his unknown son Levon very much more of his time, energy and “guidance” than he was ready to give.

Levon, the nerdy virgin son, was taught everything and he actually did quite a good job at that (he set him up with prostitutes and much more that actually broke Levon’s personal shells and liberated him). He refers to Becca as “daughter”, and, one imagines, Levon as “son”.

He will always stand up for his ex-wife and the daughter and believes in being truthful with women – sometimes regardless of the consequences – and not treating them badly unnecessarily. Regardless of what happens, he truly, truly always loved and loves Karen.


Quotes

“Hell-A magazine blog number one. Hank hates you all. The few things I’ve learned in my travels through this crazy little thing called life: 1. A morning of awkwardness is far better than a night of loneliness. 2. I probably won’t go down in history, but I will go down on your sister. And 3. When I’m down there it might be nice to see a hint of pubis. I’m not talking about a huge ’70s playboy bush or anything, just something that reminds me that I’m performing cunnilingus on an adult. But I guess the larger question is: why is the city of angels so hell-bent on destroying its female population ?”

“Can we just finish this interview without, you know, the dip in the pool and the dip in the maid ?”

“Hey, my name is Hank Moody. Don’t fuck teenagers. Can I borrow a thousand bucks ?”

(To Charlie) “Look, sooner or later this guy is going to find or figure out that I’m fucking the object of his gangstery affections, and when that happens I’m toast, bloody, bullet-ridden toast. I think you should be on my side for once. You should be focused on protecting my ass, not just my career”.

“No, I’m a father. I’m not great. A great father is the guy that gives it all up for his family and leaves all that self-destructive bullshit at the door.”

(Sharing his life philosophy) “No matter what you did, don’t give up. Do not give up. Because if she loves you, she’ll forgive you. I have to believe it. Otherwise there is no point. There is no life without love. Not one worth living anyway.”

“That’s my purgatory, really. Dinner, drinks, whatever. Never really all that interested but I find myself telling her how beautiful she is anyway. ‘Cause it’s true. All women are… in one way or another. There is always something about every damn one of you [women]… a smile, curve, a secret. You ladies really are the most amazing creatures. My life’s work, but then there is the morning after. Hangover, and the realization that I’m not quite as available as I thought I was the night before. Then she is gone, and I am haunted by yet another road not taken.”

“I went on a date with this beautiful woman, an amazing woman. And I did not have sex with her. I just cock-blocked myself. I remained chaste. I kept my eye on the big picture. I exercised some impulse control.”

“No, no, it is my fault ! It is always my fault. How can I be of service ?”

“You look good, Charlie. Like a baby. A big, sexy baby.”

“Right you are, motherfuckeeer ! Right as rain. It’s time for me to grow up, to do the right thing. Jackie’s 23. She’s not looking to make those breasteses exclusive. And Jill, she knows I’ve got a snip and a baby. And Felicia, I am just a daydream to her. An escape hatch from the deanery. Shit, I can get this done in one day. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, then home for some cybersex with the soul mate.”

(Turning down sex) “Owhoah. That is tempting. But you know, I’ve already turned down sex once today and I think I can do it again. Yeah. No. Yeah. No. Yes. No. Yes. Begone harlot, I’ve got writing to do, and get your ass back to school.”

(Getting a prostitute for his son) “Really ? Is this wrong ? I can’t tell anymore.”

(To Charlie) “Yes, we are fucking fucked. And we’ve been fucked before. In the ass. Legs pinned behind our ears and not a drop of lube. We always come out smiling, and you know why ? Because that’s just the type of happy go lucky sluts we are.”


DC Universe History

Hank is always surrounded by scandal, and him, for example, following around Bruce Wayne in the guise of a playboy in order to collect material for a biography as paid by the Wayne Foundation could well introduce him to the secret of the Batman. Hank would probably also blunder upon Robin and Superman, and have run-ins with Selina Kyle, Lois Lane and Lana Lang, and who knows what could happen then?

Eventually, he would know all about their dual lives, and scoff about it, but would feel obligated to not reveal the stuff to the world in his books, only hint at some secrets behind the curtains.

Hank would also mingle with the DC Universe’s metahumans connected to the filming industry and write and co-produce something with them. And yes, he would no doubt date some prominent metahuman ladies as well… until he managed to get Karen back again! His agent, Charlie, would probably mess something up, a dangerous thing with metahumans around.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Hank Moody

Dex: 02 Str: 02 Bod: 02 Motivation: Unwanted Power
Int: 04 Wil: 04 Min: 04 Occupation: Worn-out Writer
Inf: 05 Aur: 04 Spi: 03 Resources {or Wealth}: 05
Init: 012 HP: 015

Skills:
Artist (Guitar): 02, Artist (Writer): 07, Charisma (Interrogation): 04, Charisma (Persuasion): 05, Charisma (Seduction): 06, Martial Artist (AV): 03, Vehicles (Land): 02

Advantages
Attractive, Buddy (his agent Charlie Runkle), Familiarity (Literature, Song text writing), Language (some fragmentary Spanish)

Connections:
Charlie Runkle (High), Lew Ashby the record producer (High; during season 2 only), The Dean’s wife (High; during season 3 only), Sasha Bingham the actress (Low; during season 4 only), Calvin ’Samurai Apocalypse‘ the rapper (Low; during Season 5 only), Atticus Fetch the musician (Low; during season 6 only), Trixie the hooker (High), novelist Richard Bates (High)

Drawbacks:
Dependent (Becka Moody), Guilt, SIA (Alcohol, nicotine and sex), MIA (Karen Van Der Beek, the ex-girlfriend)

By Dr. Peter S Piispanen

Source of Character: Californication series Seasons 1-7
Writeup completed on the 8th of December, 2015.

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