Strange Worlds

From Austin Improv Community Wiki

A drawing of the cast of heroes from _Strange Worlds_.
A drawing by Ryan Austin of the cast of heroes from Strange Worlds.

Strange Worlds was a mainstage show at The Hideout Theatre based on 30s pulp adventure.


The show was an improvised serial anthology based in the tropes of the pulps of the 30s and 40s. The cast developed hero characters in rehearsals, and each performance featured two adventures, each featuring one of those heroes, and an shorter interstitial story ("Strange Times") that followed a reporter and cop as they investigated the blowback from those stories.

The technical improvisors for the show are Cindy Page, Chad Wellington, and Michael Yew.


Here is Jordan T. Maxwell's explanation of the name's origin:

I got turned on to the pulps after reading the first issue of Planetary, the last line (and pseudo-motto) of which is "Strange world. Let's keep it that way." When I was trying to think of something that sounded like the title of an old pulp anthology, those first two words were just right.


  • The Beacon (Marc Majcher) is a stage magician and debunker named Rick White, cursed to attract supernatural forces at all times.
  • Jack Ryder of Neptune (Ryan Austin) is an American sailor who, while returning home from the war, is sucked into a wormhole that deposits him on the fantastical planet of Neptune (known to its natives as Shano).
  • Simon Doyle (Peter Rogers) AKA "Codename: Sleuth" is a brilliant British agent who was thrown out of SIS because of his ceaseless pursuit of a shadowy international cabal known only as "The Spiderweb". He now lives in the United States, tracking the group's agents and zeroing in on its sinister purpose.
  • Dr. Lily Wilde (Madeline M.), jungle professor, is an anthropologist raised in the jungles of the Amazon. With her ready fists and her keen scientific insights, she fights all of the enemies of the natural world and its denizens.
  • Maxine Maker (Jessica Arjet) is a clever gadgeteer who uses her inventions to fight mad scientists, giant robots, and the like, in a world that's often biased against female engineers.
  • The Grey Bishop (Andreas Fabis) is Martin Van Sant, a Dutch bookshop owner and chess enthusiast who, in his spare time, dons a domino mask and matches wits against master criminals as "The Grey Bishop". His morally ambiguous crimefighting methods often leave a body count, and he has a penchant for leaving chess pieces with his victims: pawns for minor henchmen, perhaps a bishop for a higher lieutenant, and so on.
  • The Peregrine (Lacy Shawn) is Annie Peregrine, a street urchin who moonlights as the city's most feared cat burglar (and occasionally dons the guise of high-society girl Anna Margaret Volare). She targets the corrupt rich, and commits her crimes with the help of a slingshot with a variety of useful pellets, and Hawkimedes, a particularly well-trained hawk.
  • Bellwether Blue (Jayme Ramsay) is an ace pilot, the daughter of a great (and deceased) war hero. She flies with her two "Liberty Aces", Tank (Alexander Hilary) and Spunk (Marc Majcher), and often fights fascists intent on world domination.

The Protagonists of Strange Times

  • Morgan McNulty (Heidi Rogers) is a city cop with a penchant for violence. She's been suspended from active duty at least once for this.
  • Nate Jester (Alexander Hilary) is a former war reporter who now covers oddball, freak occurrences for the city paper.

Show Summaries


Main Run



More Information