Dungeons & Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness on Syfy Tonight! Revel in the Horror of a Badly Managed Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property (IP) is legal shorthand for all the stuff you brand with your creation. “Star Wars” toys, “Pokemon” chewing gum and “Hello Kitty”  t-shirts are examples of a company leveraging their creation to expand the brand. Oh, and they generate income through licensing, of course.

The danger lies in flooding the market with too many, low quality items coated with your IP and devaluing it.  Nothing says quality like “Hello Kitty” toilet paper!

That said and with all do respect to “Hello Kitty,” Wizards of the Coast continues to impress me with its “Dungeons and Dragons” IP management incompetence.  Wizards flogs  D&D products and licenses with wild abandon with no  concern as to what it is doing to the brand as a whole. D&D is the most famous RPG in the world. Even non-gamers have some awareness of its existence. It is a flagship IP that deserves respect and careful management before it becomes a national joke. Rather than respect, we get  “Dungeons & Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness.” Yes, the other two movies sucked (a Wayans brother?), but this film is  Eastern European trash cranked for zero budget with third-rate English thespians spewing words from a high schooler’s  fanfic script. The first appearance of a “Mind Flayer” on screen is particularly awful. I could not stop laughing.

I hold no malice towards the film makers. They bought a license to produce a D&D movie from Wizards. No, the blame is 100% on WOTC. Wizards had to know that they were selling to a low-rent film operation. What possessed them to allow a great IP to wallow in SYFY channel movie of the week purgatory is beyond me.

So, now I make this plea to WOTC; sell the license to someone with a brain and some budget.

Joss Whedon, please save us!

 

Trask, The Last Tyromancer

 

trask

Trask is a long-time gamer, world traveler and history buff. He hopes that his scribblings will both inform and advance gaming as a hobby.

3 thoughts on “Dungeons & Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness on Syfy Tonight! Revel in the Horror of a Badly Managed Intellectual Property

  • November 25, 2012 at 7:20 pm
    Permalink

    All due respect to Trask, I completely disagree with him.
    This is actually a pretty good movie. The acting was very good. The special effects also very good. The story also good. The problem with critics is they see everything thru eyes that expect everything to be surprising and new and brilliant and of the highest quality. Unfortunately after you read about 1000 Scifi Fantasy books and see the same number of movies, the stories become common.
    Its not their fault.
    Nonetheless, if you are a fan of Fantasy… you will like this movie.
    If you expect the movie to follow any sort of “rules” per D&D lore, you will not.
    Yes, there were some obvious issues. If I could find one big fault, its that the evil gang had all this great magic, and each time one of them dies, you expect the hero to pick up something so he can utilize it. Ultimately, it is not needed because the storyline purposely guides him to his “destiny”. I find these conveniences of storyline a little annoying but the fact remains, it was still a good story.
    As I watched it, I said to myself… finally a good fantasy movie.

  • December 22, 2012 at 8:33 am
    Permalink

    I suppose then, that this will show up in the $5 bin at Wal-Mart soon enough.

  • January 18, 2013 at 10:09 am
    Permalink

    We’re well-past the “IP that deserves respect and careful management before it becomes a national joke”. If you told your mom that you played D&D during the 80’s she wondered if you sold your soul to Satan. D&D was edgy, it had shock value. Nowadays, if you told your mom that you played D&D, she’ll wonder if you’ll ever get a job, kiss a girl, or move out of the basement.

Comments are closed.