Cover art for podcast Capes On the Couch - Where Comics Get Counseling

Capes On the Couch - Where Comics Get Counseling

155 EpisodesProduced by Capes on the Couch: Where Comics Get CounselingWebsite

Saving the world doesn't necessarily mean you go home happy. How's the mental health of your favorite superhero? A comic aficionado and a board-certified psychiatrist look at the various neuroses of your favorite heroes and villains and provide options for treatment.

1:10:27

Issue 138 - Wiccan (with Khelan from Homo Superior)

  • Intro
    • Thanks to all our Patrons: Humble Citizens Dan and Kate; Local Officials Frank, Rey, and Jonathan; Mayors Angela, Chad, Devon, Maggie, Matt, Nyan, Ryan, and Tasha; Presidents Ariel, Jeanine, Matt, and Ruby
    • Thanks to Khelan from Homo Superior - explain the show
  • Background (3:30)
    • Wiccan created by Allen Heinberg and Jim Cheung in Young Avengers #1 (April 2005)
    • Billy Kaplan is a magic user recruited by Iron Lad (a time-traveling variant of Kang the Conqueror) to join a team of heroes to replace the disbanded Avengers
    • Initially calling himself Asgardian, he changes his name to Wiccan
    • Begins dating his teammate Teddy Altman, the shapeshifter called Hulkling
    • Meets Tommy Shepherd, who looks identically to him but has different hair and superspeed powers
    • Billy & the Young Avengers join Captain America’s anti-registration team in Civil War - an attack on Billy is what kicks off a massive fight that leaves several heroes dead or incapacitated
    • Billy & Tommy come to learn of a possible connection to the Scarlet Witch, who previously had twin boys named Billy & Tommy that vanished when it was revealed that she created them out of chaos magic, but they later vanished after Mephisto wiped them from existence - their souls were “repurposed” into Billy Kaplan & Tommy Shepherd #BecauseComics
    • Children’s Crusade: Billy & the Young Avengers seek out Wanda, who had been missing since House of M, to determine parentage - after finding an amnesiac Wanda in Latveria and engaged to Dr. Doom, she has her memory & powers restored, and reveals that she is in fact their mom - a battle with Dr. Doom leaves Cassie dead, but Teddy proposes to Billy
    • Empyre: Thanks to his Skrull-Kree heritage, Teddy becomes Emperor of a new alliance, and they declare war on the Cotati, a plant-like race bent on revenge against former Skrull enslavers - before he leaves, Teddy and Billy get married in Vegas, and then officially once the war is over, combining Skrull, Kree, and Jewish customs
    • Currently serving as prince consort to Teddy

  • Issues (7:32)
    • Uncertainty over parentage causes stress
    • Questions over extent of powers (17:40)
    • Husband's responsibilities pull him off-world (30:14)
    • Not an issue: his family and support system (37:38)
  • Break (47:43)
  • Treatment (49:23)
    • In-universe - Have Billy say “no more magic” to put aside that aspect of his life for a while
    • Out of universe - Focus on what the patient wants to talk about, and whether they have a good fit with the therapist (51:36)
  • Skit (feat. Khelan) (59:20)  
    • DOC: Hello Billy, I’m Dr. Issues.
    • BILLY: Hey Doc. 
    • D: How are you? 
    • B: I mean, things have been worse.
    • D: That’s not exactly a rousing endorsement.
    • B: Sorry, I just mean there were a lot of questions that were driving me crazy, and I don’t have nearly as many as I did before. That’s a good thing.
    • D: I’m glad to hear that. So what lingers?
    • B: Still a ton of stuff. *pause* This is a bit hard, you know? I get it’s your job, but sometimes I think even professionals will misinterpret what I’m saying, so I’m careful with what I let out.
    • D: Totally understandable. Just remember that this is confidential, so even if things don’t go as expected, they stay between us as long as no one is put in danger.
    • B: Good to know.
    • D: So, name something you want to discuss.
    • B: Iwanttobecalmiwanttobecalmiwanttobecalm…
    • D: Excuse me?
    • B: Sorry, just wanted to be sure I was in the right headspace before I started. Is it wrong to want your husband to be around more?
    • D: That...sounds like a loaded question. I take it you mean “more than he is now” and that there is some sort of barrier to that?
    • B: Exactly.
    • D: Does he disagree with you?
    • B: NOT exactly. It’s more to do with...outside activities.
    • D: Are they activities that you approve of?
    • B: I don’t have a choice.
    • D: There’s always a choice; it’s just a matter of consequences.
    • B: Well, the consequences here involve the wellbeing of a whole empire, so do with that what you will.
    • D: *pause* Heavy stuff.
    • B: And listen, I’m so proud of him taking on this responsibility, and he does it so well and capably. And it doesn’t hurt that he looks AMAZING with a crown on his head. I just… I want some more US time, y’know?
    • D: For once when talking to a superhero, I DO know, quite well. How far would you say the scale has shifted?
    • B: Oh, he hasn’t packed on weight or anything. He still can bench press
    • D: *interrupting* I’m glad that you’re clearly still into him physically...what I meant was, on the work-life balance spectrum of his time with the crown versus his time with you, where is he on that scale?
    • B: Hmmmm...maybe 75-25? No that’s too harsh. How about 60-40.
    • D: Your first answer was your gut, and that’s ok. Intuition that’s unrecognized can lead to dangerous emotional impulse. Your second answer sounds like what you would settle for. But tell me...really. What do you want it to be?
    • B: The selfish side of me would say 5-95, and that’s being generous. I just… we’re newly married, our honeymoon was interrupted by symbiote dragons attacking the resort, and it seems like he can’t make a decision without having to worry about some intergalactic treaty or alliance hanging on his every move. I love him, and I’ll be his ride or die until neither of us draw breath, but I confess I did NOT see this as part of the whole “till death do us part” thing when I fell in love with him. So the simple answer is I don’t honestly know what a good balance would be, but I know this ain’t it.
    • D: That may be one of the most mature answers I’ve heard in a long time. I’m not going to promise that those outside factors are going to change, but I can vow that it is my ethical duty to help your attempts at discovering a better balance each time we discuss it in each session. My only caution to you is to not expect things to just magically change.
    • B: Except you realize who you’re talking to, right?
    • D: Yes, but even still-
    • B: Iwantabetterbalanceiwantabetterbalanceiwantabetterbalance
    • D: As I was saying, I know you want things to get towards total devotion, but the increase in civil unrest may be taking an emotional toll on your partner. Have you talked about that with him?
    • B: Pardon me, but, I don’t think it’s THAT bad.
    • D: Well, 25-75 isn’t your perfect goal, and yet, the attempts on the lives of your fellow heroes must have led to so much anxiety. 
    • B: No, no, that’s not -
    • D: But you did say he was willing to surrender if it came time to save you. I’m glad that he has made it known how much he loves you.
    • B: Iwantabetterkingdomiwantabetterkingdomiwantabetterkingdom
    • D: You’re clearly using your abilities to influence what you can. I’ve been talking a lot here. Rather than creating more stress for yourself, let me know, what’s your take on your husband’s pushback?
    • B: *semi-robotic* I want the kingdom to be better. *normal* I thought I made that clear with the spells and the talking and I really thought you would have picked up on this by now oh my gosh have I completely made things worse oh no oh no oh no not again…
    • D: Well, I usually don’t jump to this in a session, but your anxiety appears to be through the roof! Have you considered other forms of relaxation, or a discussion on possible medication management?
    • B: Sorry, sorry, I just had a bit of a freakout there...we were talking about acceptable balance. I’m willing to work at it the slow...the NON MAGIC way.
    • D: No problem. 76-24 is not the worst I’ve ever heard in terms of a ratio
    • B: WHAT?
    • D: Just a bit of humor on my end. Usually the reality is somewhere between your gut and your partner’s thoughts. I’m in no position right now to tell what the number is. Only you know that.
    • B: Oh, so the things you said before, with what I cast, and the responses after that, it wasn’t so bad I didn’t screw everything up there's still a chance oh my god this is amazing!
    • D: You’re...welcome? I must say, for someone who knows a lot about things I couldn’t begin to understand, you sell yourself short with how much you have in your control.
    • B: Maybe not as much as you think, doctor.
    • D: Ok then, perhaps we’ll discuss how much control you have over the situation in our next session. In the meantime, enjoy that makeup honeymoon that your constituents planned for you out of respect for your personal lives.
    • B: Whoa...whoa...then it really made a difference? I did better? I...nevermind. You’re right. Let’s leave it at that. Iwanttogototeddyiwanttogototeddyiwanttogototeddy...
  • Ending (66:24
    • Recommended reading: Young Avengers Vol 1
    • Review read: Tamir “Mad at myself for sleeping on such a unique and engaging podcast, but after binging and catching up in just under 3 months I have two things to say: 1) This podcast is amazing. Just because the characters are fictional doesn't mean the issues they have are and it always surprises me when I get emotionally invested in an episode and have to remind myself that I'm in public.  2) I'm now sad that I have to wait weekly for new episodes when I was knocking out a couple a day while working. Listener for life.”
    • Next episodes: Donna Troy, Homelander, Polaris
    • Plugs for social

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