There are billions of stars, millions of planets, but there is only one man, Terrance McDoogal. Welcome to LIU Atlas.
About this creation
LIU Atlas - Praestigiae
The Ludgonian Industrial Union's galaxy contains billions of stars and billions of planets. Unfortunately, most residents of the LIU could only name a handful of these worlds. In order to improve astronomy grades across the LIU, TV2 has started a new program called LIU Atlas. Follow our host, Terrance McDoogal, as he takes you on a tour across the LIU and some of its more obscure worlds.
Note: This episode is presented in full screen. The corresponding dialogue is underneath each photo.
Doog: “Welcome to the season finale of the fifth season of LIU Atlas. I’m your host, Terrance “Doog” McDoogal. Today, we’ve ventured far out into the galaxy’s outer rim to visit the planet Praestigiae. Praestigiae’s position in the outer rim makes it a frequent arrival point for visiting dignitaries. In order to serve these dignitaries, a large Ambassadorial Complex was built on the planet‘s equator. The complex serves as a diplomatic meeting place where LIU ambassadors, negotiators, and sales managers can meet with representatives from other galaxies. Several deals, treaties, and alliances have been negotiated here, making Praestigiae one of the more important worlds we‘ve visited.”
Doog: “Alright folks, I’m in some type of waiting room near the entrance of the Ambassadorial Complex. Security looks to be pretty tight. I guess I’ll wait here for my guide.”
Ludlum: “Ah, there you are. I hope you haven’t waited long. I was finishing up a trade agreement with the Sargarian Empire. I’m Todd Ludlum by the way. I’m senior diplomat here at the Praestigiae Ambassadorial Complex. Uh…are you going to leave me hanging or what?”
Doog: “You actually want me to shake your hand? Most of the ‘important’ guides I’ve interviewed wanted nothing to do with me.”
Ludlum: “Ha, I’m not that important. Sure, I’m an elite citizen that makes billion dollar deals, negotiates treaties, and prevents intergalactic wars, but who’s counting. Well, if you are ready to see some of our operations, we’ll begin the security screening.”
Doog: “Uh, what’s going on? What is this thing?”
Ludlum: “Just a security scanner. We need to insure no weapons are being brought into the complex. Not all the diplomats we receive here are on the friendliest terms with the LIU. Just stay still for a few moments.”
Ludlum: “This is one of the complex’s ballrooms, ideal for throwing galas, mixers, and cocktail parties. Most business is done in informal settings like this rather than formal meetings. The ever flowing alcoholic beverages might be the cause. If you…”
Doog: “How did I…never mind, continue.”
Ludlum: “We’ve spared to expense in making this complex. This rug is made of the finest Aranea Sericon silk. It took two dozen involunteers a month to hand sew it. The chandelier above us is made of the purest gold imported from Laceratus. Its refractive crystals are actually pure carbon diamonds.”
Doog: “Yes. Everything looks expensive. I’m afraid to move, I’ll probably ruin something.”
Ludlum: “Expensive, yes, but a drop in the bucket compared to the amounts of money made in the complex. We treat even the poorest empires to all we have to offer. It’s funny how much good will towards the LIU can be generated by greasing up foreign dignitaries.”
Doog: “Speaking of which, I don’t see any foreigners here, only humans.”
Ludlum: “Well, today is a special occasion. We have something important to discuss. Before we get that, how about some refreshments?”
Ludlum: “I bet this guy looks familiar. We brought in some natives from Niflheim to be part of the service staff. Their astounding customer service skills are galaxy renowned.”
Staff: “Doog, may I interest you in a glass of Iacchus Wine? Otherwise known as the Elixir of the Gods? The fermented berries come from only one planet, Iacchus, an inhospitable hell-hole. It’s safe to assume that at least four workers died picking the berries for this bottle. It’s said that you can taste their despair.”
Doog: “What! I’m a man of the people. I could never drink something like that!”
Ludlum: “Well Doog. That’s what I wanted to talk to you about. Everybody gather around.”
Ludlum: “Doog, your show has made the LIU tons of money. The syndication rights are worth billions of credits on their own. Besides that, you’ve become something of a celebrity lately. I’m here as a representative of the LIU, and after much discussion, we’ve decided to enhance your citizenship status. You, my friend, are now an elite-citizen.”
Doog: “Me? I…I don’t know if…I’m a man of the…are you for real?”
Ludlum: “It’s quite unusual for a man of your resources to be given this title, so we’ve decided to make a one time donation of five hundred million credits to your bank account. After that, you’ll be included in the corporate profit sharing.”
Doog: “I really don’t know if I can…”
Doog: “…decide what I’m going to buy first! Screw the people! I’m rich! Woohoo! Bow before me!”
Doog: “What the heck! Where am I?”
Ludlum: “Ha. Sorry Doog. I couldn’t resist.”
Doog: “Couldn’t resist what? Is this how you treat elite citizens?”
Ludlum: “Yeah, about that, you’re not actually an elite citizen. It was all an illusion. You’ve been dreaming.”
Doog: “What! No! Impossible!”
Ludlum: “I’m afraid so. You know that ‘security scan’ you submitted to, well, it was actually a brain wave mapper. After the mapping was completed, the scanner caused you to become unconscious, and we moved you to the dream chamber.”
Doog: “Why would you do this?”
Ludlum: “We do it to all our visitors. We handle hundreds of dignitaries a month, meeting all their needs was becoming expensive. It was a waste of money. Why actually give these people anything when you can just make them think you did. Like you, all the guests submit to the scan, have their brains mapped, and then are brought into the warehouse.”
Doog: “The warehouse?”
Ludlum: “Yes, where we are now. Other than the waiting room, this entire complex is just a simple warehouse filled with dream link machines.”
Doog: “How does it work?”
Ludlum: “It’s called dream sharing. We simply upload your consciousness into our dream matrix. One of the LIU’s ambassadors will upload his consciousness into the dream as well. We’ll then interact in the dream. Come on, let’s go back in and I’ll show you some of the benefits. Katherine, please begin the upload process. Oh, and better make it ghost mode.”
Katherine: “Yes sir.”
Doog: “Ghost mode?”
Ludlum: “So the other dreamers don’t see us.”
Doog: “This is the same room you devastated me in. Thanks for bringing back the memories…”
Ludlum: “Yes. The ballroom is one of our favorite artificial constructs. You can see here one of my ambassadors meeting with the KinPump Empire. I believe he’s negotiating the use of their trade routes. Let’s listen in.”
O’-Lantern: “This is fine KinPump Ale. How did you ever know it was my favorite?”
Diplomat: “Your grace, the LIU always strives to please its most important guests. In fact, I brought something even more special. Waiter!”
O’-Lantern: “Impossible. The Saficant Gourd is all but extinct. The few remaining gourds are priceless. How did you come across one?”
Diplomat: “They’re not priceless, just mighty expensive. I had someone pick one up from your galaxy. Only cost a few billion credits.”
O’-Lantern: “That’s more than our deal is worth!”
Diplomat: “Well, I guess you should have no problem signing the agreement then.”
O’-Lantern: “Of course not. Get me a pen.”
Diplomat: “Excellent. Let’s eat.”
Doog: “You tricked them…”
Ludlum: “Yep. Bribery and flattery are so much cheaper in the dream world. It’s brilliant, but it is not our only method. Let‘s upload into another dream.”
Doog: “Whoa. Did we get uploaded into a wet dream? Weird.”
Ludlum: “Sex sells, and the mind mapper knows all your innermost desires. We can devise situations that you could never say no to.”
Plu’Karrath: “Wow. This is sort of freaky. It’s almost like you’re reading my mind. How did you know my kinks? It’s sort of embarrassing.”
Diplomat: “No, no. Don’t worry. We set this up so you could enjoy yourself for a bit. We’ll finish up business later.”
Doog: “Wait, isn’t this the same method? I mean, you’re bribing him with sex.”
Ludlum: “Nope, because in these types of situations, we use blackmail.”
Ludlum: “Yep. We capture a digital image from the dream like this. If the foreign diplomat says ‘no’, then we threaten to mail this little picture to his mating partner. You’d be surprised how many people would sell out their empire to avoid a woman’s scorn.”
Doog: “That’s just plain dirty.”
Ludlum: “Yep, but it works. Come on, let’s see another method.”
Ludlum: “The dream matrix is also useful for extracting information. We can listen in on conversations when the foreign diplomats think they are alone. We can see their access codes, bank accounts, shield frequencies…whatever they discuss or look up while in the dream.”
Security: “Sir. I’ve scanned the room. I didn’t find any listening devices. But I think we should be careful and use a secure server.”
Diplomat: “Relax. The LIU put us up in one of their most expensive rooms. They have tea imported from our home galaxy that costs more than you make in a lifetime. The LIU has so much money I don’t really think they are worried about us and our little twenty planet coalition.”
Ludlum: “And BAM! We’re in. Let’s see. Looks like he’s logging into his coalition’s secure server. HUMANSSUCK69 is his password. Nice. Well, it looks like we have access to his server. Who knows what valuable secrets we’ll find on there?”
Doog: “Well folks, I owe everyone an apology. I might have said a few things I regret and acted out of character when I thought I was an extremely rich elite citizen. I am a man of the people. Sorry.”
Ludlum: “Apology accepted Doog.”
Doog: “I wasn’t talking to you $@&%face! I can’t believe you did that to me! Well, Praestigiae is an interesting place. Foreign dignitaries are tricked into entering a dream world where they are bribed, blackmailed, and tricked into signing agreements with the LIU. It’s brutal. See ya next season!”
Woman: “Hey, you’re Doog right? I’m your biggest fan! Maybe we could get a drink or something before you leave.”
Doog: “Yeah, I’d like that…wait a minute…you’re too beautiful for someone like me. Ludlum!”
Ludlum: “Sorry. I couldn’t resist.”
Doog: “I don’t know what’s real anymore!!”
The fifth season of LIU Atlas is now available on DVD.
Aw! Just when it looked like Doog had finally made it he got clobbered by the harsh realities of life in the LIU. I assume that episode will never be broadcast, otherwise the "aliens" will be privy to all of the LIU's dodgy techniques.
I THOUGHT I missed an episode! Sorry for the delay on the comment. Anyway, what a great way to finish out this season! It's obvious those negotiators took political lessons in Illinois. And in response to what Hans said... Get out of my mind! hahaha Looking forward to the next chapter in the LIU Universe! ~ Chris.
more proof that politicians are stupid. Who would buy a billion dollar bottle of hooch for a million dollar deal!
Clever to the very core this build was. And man oh man, the link to the entire season?! There goes my afternoon!
Great finale, Chief! And congrats on an awesome season. Nice sets in this episode, with lots of new and interesting details, especially that chandelier. The Total Recall angle is pretty funny, too, poor Doug, rug pulled right out from under him.
I always figured that that's what females do with lightsabers... ;) Great episode, a fitting season finale. Clever techniques throughout, your use of beakers as wine glasses is truly brilliant, far and away superior to other techniques. But hey, I guess the LIU can afford cutting edge R&D.