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Phantom of the Paradise (1974 movie)

Phantom of the Paradise

(Winslow Leach)


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

Context

Le Fantôme de L’Opéra is a 1909 pop thriller novel by Gaston Leroux. It has seen innumerable adaptations, chiefly in the US, including 15+ movies.

This here profile is about the 1974 Brian de Palma movie version, Phantom of the Paradise, a very 1970s version with more horror. As with many of the 1970s and 1980s movies covered on writeups.org, it was widely panned by Serious People at release, and has since been vindicated as a classic.


Background

  • Real Name: Winslow Leach.
  • Marital Status: Single.
  • Known Relatives: None.
  • Group Affiliation: None.
  • Base Of Operations: Untold.
  • Height: 5’10” Weight: 154 lbs. (both are guesses).
  • Eyes: Greenish-grey. Hair: Black


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Powers and Abilities

Leach was a very talented musician. His feeble physical abilities were enhanced by his madness when his music was stolen and thrashed like his face. When he goes really mad he is able to go through brick walls or steel doors (Power Reserve).

Since he sold his soul to Swan, he can’t die until Swan himself does. And Swan can’t die either until his portrait is stolen.


History

Leach was a minor musician with a great talent. He was concentrating on a majestic rock-opera cantata about the Faust Myth. Famous music tycoon Swan heard a bit of it during an audition for the re-opening of an old rock palace, the Paradise. Swan stole Leach’s work.

Swan then made Leach think he was interested on his music and that singer Phoenix, chosen by Leach, was going to perform it. Phoenix was indeed perfect for the cantata, but Swan had to pervert it somehow. He disliked anything perfect… beyond himself.

To do as he desired,Swan made Leach to be put in jail, at Sing-Sing , where his teeth were extracted in a savage re-education project. Some time later, Leach escaped the prison.


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A ghost is born

When Leach discovered he had been cheated, he entered a deep rage. It was heightened when his face was disfigured by a vinyls-stamper press. That moment on he became the Phantom of Paradise. He would try to sabotage all intents of Swan to alter his work.

Swan hired the Phantom, knowing he was Leach, to stop the attacks. He also made him finish the cantata for the opening of the Paradise. He made him sign a devilish contract by promising Phoenix would be the singer of the play.

Leach was again betrayed. Swan instead hired Beef, a heavy metal singer to perform the cantata, altering it beyond recognition. He demoted Phoenix to a mere chorus girl role and closed Leach at his studio.But Leach escaped and killed Beef on stage. Phoenix had to take his place and the concert was a total success.

Phoenix endsong

Now Phoenix sang Leach’s cantata. But Swan perverted her, too. He both turned her into his lover and bonded her with another satanic contract.

Desperate, Leach discovered the film where Swan recorded his pact with the devil. Now understanding he had been a mere toy all the time, the Phantom destroyed the film (and Swan) when the music tycoon was going to marry Phoenix. He then killed himself on the run.


Description

He looked the typical frail composer with great talent,. But even before the accident he had more rage-fuelled strength than his build should make possible.

After the accident, he wears a black suit, a red cape and a helmet with a silver bird-like mask. On his chest there is a box that allows him to talk with a metallic voice. It will even sing with his perfect old voice when connected to the proper sound table.

His rotten face is never completely shown. But it’s clearly seen he has metallic teeth in place of the ones that were taken from him, and that his lips are now violet-black.


Personality

Before turning completely mad, Leach wasn’t very outgoing or confident about himself. The one exception was his cantata, that he knew was sublime. He was very fond and kind of loved Phoenix.

When he became the Phantom, he turned in a mix of psychopath and avenger. There were some mixed themes of super-hero and tragic hero that does his best against-all-odds.


Quotes

“My music is for Phoenix. Only she can sing it. Anyone else who tries, dies !”


DC Universe History

Four possibilities:

  1. Leach’s story happened when the movie tells us, 1974, in any desired major city in the DCU. And now there’s somebody following his modus operandi.
  2. The events in the movie are taking place right now. It’s the PCs task to try to save as many people as possible… including himself.
  3. Somehow, Leach happened to survive. Either that means Swan is also alive and their relation will be like a Vandal Savage-Immortal Man one. Or Leach has now to battle Swan’s patron : the Devil. Who can be Blaze or Neron… or perhaps even Darkseid.
  4. On the 30th century, Leach’s cantata happens to be the only way to stop a diabolical invasion. But it has arrived very damaged to that time. The Legion would have to travel back in time to get it from the Phantom before he dies.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

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Phantom of the Paradise

A 447 Point Character

Dex: 04 Str: 12 Bod: 03 Motivation: Seeking Justice/Psychopathic
Int: 03 Wil: 04 Min: 03 Occupation: Music Composer/Terrorist
Inf: 02 Aur: 03 Spi: 06 Wealth: 002
Init: 011 HP: 030

Powers:
Invulnerability (Mystic Linked): 12

Skills:
Acrobatics (Climbing): 05, Artist (Musician): 10, Artist (Singer): 04, Charisma (Intimidation): 05, Thief (Stealth): 05, Weaponry (Exotic, Melee, Missile Weapons)*: 04

Advantages:
Lightning Reflexes, Scholar [Faust Myth].

Drawbacks:

  • Loss Vulnerability (STR becomes 04 when not psychotically enraged).
  • Loss Vulnerability (STR becomes 04 and Invulnerability becomes 00 if Swan is killed).
  • SIA (Phoenix).
  • CIA (His Music).
  • MIH (Swan).
  • SPR (Can’t speak without synthesizer).
  • CPI.
  • Serious Rage.
  • Strange Appearance.
  • Unluck.

Equipment:

  • Helmet [BODY 01].
  • VOCAL SYNTHESIZER [BODY 01, Misc. Bonus: allows to overcome his SPR].

By KalEl el Vigilante.

Source of Character: The “Phantom of the Paradise” film.

Helper(s): Roy Cowan.

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