Saturday, April 17, 2021

"The Therapy Was Complete"

"Comfort Me, My Robot."
By Robert Bloch (1917-94).
Illustration by W. E. Terry (1921-92; HERE).
First appearance: Imagination, January 1955.
Reprints page (HERE).
Short story (12 pages).
Online at The Luminist Archives (HERE; scroll down to text page 62) and (HERE).
(Note: Hat tip to dfordoom for alerting us to this story.)
     "I want a murder. Premeditated, and in the first degree."

Does jealousy ever justify murder? In the twenty-second century it might depend on who—or what—is being murdered . . . .

Main characters:
~ The Adjustor:
  "And your request is —?"
~ Henson:
  "Simple. I want to kill my wife."
~ Lita:
  "Kiss me first. A real kiss. I like real things."

Typo: "Hensen".

References and resources:
- "Psychotherapy was just like alchemy in those days": "There are over a thousand different psychotherapy techniques, some being minor variations, while others are based on very different conceptions of psychology, ethics (how to behave professionally), or techniques. Most involve one-to-one sessions, between the client and therapist, but some are conducted with groups, including families." (Wikipedia HERE).
- "The next crude step was something called the 'psychodrama'": "Psychodrama is an action method, often used as a psychotherapy, in which clients use spontaneous dramatization, role playing, and dramatic self-presentation to investigate and gain insight into their lives." (Wikipedia HERE).
- Regarding robots in general, go to the Wikipedia pages (HERE) and (HERE). Regarding the robot types that crop up in our story, go to these TV Tropes pages: "Deceptively Human Robots" (HERE), "Fembot" (HERE), and "Robotic Spouse" (HERE).
- Our latest contact with Robert Bloch was his Cold War thriller "The Past Master" (HERE). Bloch seldom ventured into television, but when he did it could be memorable; see our posting about one of his Star Trek contributions, "Wolf in the Fold" (HERE).

1 comment:

  1. You can't go wrong when you combine psychotherapy with murder.