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Temps is a 1991 Shared Universe anthology with stories by various authors set in a world where superhuman powers are common and the British government requires everybody with a Talent, no matter how useless, to register with the Department of Paranormal Resources and be on call to serve their country. Edited by Neil Gaiman and Alex Stewart, Temps contains stories by Alex Stewart, Brian Stableford, Marcus L Rowland, Kim Newman, David Langford, Roz Kaveney, Liz Holliday, Graham Higgins, Colin Greenland, Storm Constantine, and David V Barrett.
A sequel, Euro Temps, expanded the scope to other nations of the European Economic Community. Edited by Alex Stewart, it contains stories by Brian Stableford, Marcus L. Rowland, David Langford, Roz Kaveney, Graham Joyce, Jenny Jones, Liz Holliday, Colin Greenland, Anne Gay, Storm Constantine, Molly Brown, Tina Anghelatos, and Chris Amies.
Temps and Euro Temps provide examples of:
- Blessed with Suck / What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Most of the protagonists.
- The protagonist of "Leaks" has the power to teleport beer from other people's glasses into his own.
- The central character of "Frog Day Afternoon" turns into a frog. A man-sized frog who can't move very fast or make great leaps. Oh, and he never learned to swim.
- British Frozen Rocks with Penguins and Landmines: It's British satire in the 1990s, so of course The Falklands War gets a few mentions.
- The title character of "Pitbull Brittan" fought in the Falklands War.
- In "Frog Day Afternoon", a character with a theory about the government engineering crises it can thwart to keep up its approval ratings mentions the Falklands as what might have given them the idea.
- Canon Dis Continuity: "Pitbull Brittan", a savagely angry satire on the government of the day that features Margaret Thatcher taking one for the sake of the country, has an editorial disclaimer establishing it as an in-universe fiction and not a "real" event.
- Canon Welding: David Langford and Kim Newman do this: "Leaks" is set in the same Atomic Weapons Establishment parody as The Leaky Establishment. Alternate universe versions of a minor "Pitbull Britain" character appear in the Richard Jeperson story "Swellhead".
- Creator Cameo: Alex Stewart suffers Death by Cameo in "Pitbull Brittan".
- The Fagin: In "Sortilege and Serendipity", when the hapless hero, whose job is testing Talented kids, is mistaken for the super criminal known as the Taxman, he finds himself spinning a yarn about being a Fagin-figure using his work to recruit powered youngsters into his gang. He briefly wonders why he's never actually done this, before remembering that all the kids he works with are mouthy pains-in-the-neck with useless powers.
- Gentleman Wizard: Loric.
- Inexplicably Identical Individuals: A running gag is that every DPR branch office in every story is run by the same inept secretary named Marcia. The anthology's foreword explains that this is a result of a cloning mishap.
- Lethal Harmless Powers: The denouement of "Leaks".
- Mad Scientist: Cranston.
- No Plans, No Prototype, No Backup: The famous Mad Scientist Cranston did keep detailed notes of his experiments in robotics, cloning and advanced nuclear power... but because his superpower was the Placebotinum Effect, almost all of them are total nonsense.
- Placebotinum Effect: Cranston, a WWII Mad Scientist. His giant robot is unaffected by a character with psychic control of computers because "he never liked Turing, and used entirely different principles". He died when he sucessfully split an atom with a hammer and chisel.
- Shapeshifter Baggage: One of the reasons turning into a frog isn't as awesome as you might think in "Frog Day Afternoon": conservation of mass means that he turns into a very large frog that can't jump much.
- Shared Universe
- Shout-Out: Leonora Norton, whose paranormal power is causing rubbish to spontaneously generate around her, is given the nickname "Captain Kipple", after Philip K. Dick's word for spontaneously generated rubbish.
- Super Registration Act: All British "paranorms" are required to register with the Department of Paranormal Resources and, in exchange for a monthly stipend and a cheap suit, can then be called up as government operatives and penalised for vigilantism. Mostly, the paranorms view this the way most people view government interference in their lives; annoying, but not worth making a fuss over.