The SFFaudio Podcast #622 – READALONG: Between Planets by Robert A. Heinlein

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #622 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, Evan Lampe, Will Emmons, and Olav Rokne talk about Between Planets by Robert A. Heinlein

Talked about on today’s show:
Blue Book, 1951, Planets In Combat, the prose in this novel is “turgid”, here comes the trolling, swollen and distended and congested, To Sail Beyond The Sunset, short punchy sentences, larded up with excessive detail and flowery prose, Lovecraft, turgid vs. intricate, complex vs. complicated, like a clock or a little watch, tiny little things designed and built to have a precise effect, to appreciate the exact feeling, be accurate in your criticism, why are they using these slurs, you can’t just swap in Scazli, Annalee Newitz, Our Opinions Are Correct Episode 65: We’re Officially Done with Lovecraft and Campbell, Evan tricked Jesse, Will tricked Jesse, “I’ll allow it”, why we can dismiss John W. Campbell and H.P. Lovecraft, read Ayn Rand, an incredibly odd and limiting and damaging world view, replaced, or filtered through Scalzi, Olav’s beef with Ayn Rand, a 15 page didactic rant, the sun rises again, Atlas Shrugged, The Fountainhead, an article by Annalee Newitz reading a book review of a biography, a very interesting block quote, starting as a socialist and ending as a libertarian, Glory Road, I Will Fear No Evil, any redeeming features, was it turgid?, it can’t be turgid, they don’t want people to read Heinlein, maybe they’ll become libertarians?, Rand Paul vs. Ron Paul, in the American context, if you want to understand the United States, a preponderance of non-Americans, treaty six territory, how could you read a book like this and say it has nothing of value, a whack ideology, Neo-liberalism, Neo-conservativism, a kind of censorship ideology, you absolutely must read all the Heinlein, a certain amount of pushback on gatekeepering, talking to fans vs. writers, Paul lives in twitter writerland, nothing past 10 years ago (or 30 years ago), don’t do your homework, how far back do you “need” to read to sell today, safely skip, Heinlein TLDR, “just read Scalzi”, Old Man’s War, “Scazli is the new Heinlein”, marketing of people, X is the new Y, she/her pronouns should be they/them, an explainer in The New York Times right before Lovecraft Country started, trying to understand reality, this is not applied, people not doing their homework is what bothers Jesse, not a new thing, Scalzi wrote up giant piece, Poe is not a third rate writer, where’s the evidence that Lovecraft is sexist?, Lovecraft is not interesting on gender, The Thing On The Doorstep, Zealia Bishop, The Mound, humble and respectful, The Unnameable, Heinlein is incredibly progressive, The Pleasant Profession Of Robert A. Heinlein, The Number Of The Beast, SPRUNG, other womens’ parts, it’s a kissing book, appropriating, adjacent to the sexual revolution, Stranger In A Strange Land was very influential, ahead of the curve, students pushing for access to birth control, early wifeswapping, as a female human being Maissa didn’t want to read it, talking about breasts and nipples makes you a sexist, arguing with podcasters who are not listening to us, Farah Mendlesohn, where’s the audiobook?, The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen, the fauns, the move overs, the gregarians, tiny pans, affectionate, addicted to hugs and nuzzlings, they have hands, they wanna eat your pies, they’re wonderful!, that’s from The Unnameable, a less rapey version of Pan, Little Fuzzy, the fauns of Venus, the fog-eaters of New London, dragons and fauns, a fantasy Europe, Paul is very lucky, a juvenile (novel), he becomes a man, he must act like a man, his grandmother gets younger, a child soldier, a lot of ambivalence, where Charlie Jane are coming from, goddamn it Heinlein why are you going on about this?, war and the army, Starship Troopers, is it fascist?, Paul Verhoven is arguing with Heinlein, how we should react to Heinlein, interesting relationships, modality of talking to other people and bureaucracy, this is a book about waiting around in the airport, seem nice, talkin’ to the cops, dealing with passport and immigration, displaced person, The Wizard Of Oz, the characters he meets and the lessons he learned, his home is space, the asteroid belt, citizen of the Solar System, Citizen Of The Galaxy, recycled elements, picks up stuff from his own life, Thorby, re-writing Rudyard Kipling’s Kim, Annapolis, Farmer In The Sky, Time Enough For Love, a lot of material out there, the comic book, two different audiobooks, the Full Cast Audio audiobook, abridgments, some fools add sound effect of a creaking door, a new kind of audiobook, Bruce Coville’s company, maybe 30 minutes shorter, you don’t need sound effects, the Blackstone Audio audiobook, the Chinese restaurant owner, the casting was different with the artist drawings, the only commercially available one, out of circulation, a super-shame, lost forever, have a friend like Jesse, The Boy’s Life version (low rez), appealing to Boy Scouts Of America, Evan was a Boy Scout, youth movements of the 20th century, feeding people into the military, the Chinese Boy Scouts, the Hitler Youth, militarism, Evan largely agrees with Jesse about war, what kind of war is this?, a revolution, The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress from a point of view, libertarian, anti-colonialist aspect, a breakup of Empire story, a fantasy, the American Revolution, the settler colonists declaring independence, the support and consent of the fantasy natives, Heinlein is awash in something, rocked by national liberation movements, up to a certain point in the novel, Chinese, some of them are bad guys and some of them are good guys, fantasy national liberation movement, aristocratic dragons, libertarian dragons, we have to be careful about saying Heinlein is a libertarian, Heinlein is not Ayn Rand, entrenched in their way of life, enjoy their boomerness, more and more or less and less aware of people who are not you, being in the military is like being in a socialist state, struggling over and over again, the American Revolution, the way Canada came to be, a secret, getting in on the rest of Canada, we promise to send you a train, what else we gonna do?, a bargain and a deal, get swallowed up by the States, the U.S. Revolution as a coup d’eta, this flaw, yet another Civil War, he is aware of it, a foundation style people above this nationalism, Podkayne Of Mars, Heinlein went and visited the Soviet Union, pointing out gulags on a map, he’s not one thing, Ayn Rand’s objectivism is objectively wrong, Red Tory, the Red Tory manifesto, libertarianism with a conscience, conservative, free expression, free speech, being free, he might think the hippies reading his book uncouth but he won’t bash them for it, bookleggers, do we or don’t we, McCarthyism, this whole backstory behind this current war and revolution, the planet that was destroyed, hidden knowledge, yes but not really, all of Heinlein’s stuff is set in the same universe (Future History), the Antarctic revolution, even the terrible stuff, oh Jesse, way to goddamn long, Tunnel In The Sky, remember the least, teeth on edge, aged poorly, out of place, the early horseriding, L. Ron Hubbard, New Mexico landscapes, out of place, squaw, Indian buck:

[“We’ve got all day,” he cautioned Lazy, “so don’t get yourself in a lather. That’s a stiff climb ahead.” Don was riding alone because he had decked out Lazy in a magnificent Mexican saddle his parents had ordered sent to him for his birthday. It was a beautiful thing, as gaudy with silver as an Indian buck, but it was as out of place at the ranch school he attended as formal clothes at a branding—a point which his parents had not realized. Don was proud of it, but the other boys rode plain stock saddles; they kidded him unmercifully and had turned “Donald James Harvey” into “Don Jaime” when he first appeared with it.]

12 hours good job, the Venusian dragons, Sir Isaac Newton, sidekick aliens, the hero of his own story, Lummox, a forgettable book, quite far into the book, he’s in an airport or on an airplane, the Heinlein Society concordance, beuraucratic functionaries, strawmen, probably straight out of his own life, every ad in the first 20 pages (of a certain class for white people), military schools, prepschools, nature schools, school life away from his family, a happy reunion, central High School in Kansas City, he moved out west, politician, 1776 Independence Lane, a real thinker, so many opinions, not a hard SF book, what this new technology means, an infodump with gobbledygook words, as confused as I am, to get us that technology tyhat he needs to get us to other planets, constantly going into rebellion, so American, with an international view, a strawman villain, written for a teenage audience, I’m going to torture you, you’re going to walk out of here with no teeth, the Chinese bank, he’s in the middle, break the rules to help out a friend, deliberately obstructing, you’re right here it is, interaction with bureaucracy, Bureaucracy (InfoCom game), bureaucracy is important for Heinlein’s outlook, a reality, in that job, taking initiative, there are people who will follow the rules, there are other people, WWI fighter pilot, rules are for the obedience of fools and the guidance of wise men, exceptions, an advocate, lost in the system, argument with government, libertarian Canadians, part of the maturation process, parents as authority, negotiated, crying in the checkout line, when do people become libertarians, highschool and college, freemen on the land, Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders, a nice liberal guy like Scalzi, don’t deny that right to anybody, don’t say he’s turgid when he’s not, the motivation is so important, the reason they’re using it is because they’re saying you shouldn’t read it, paternalistic bluecheck elites, thank you for giving me permission not to read this homework, constantly rant at kids, that’s a strawman, you cant have a conversation with me, talking to my young friend Will (barely out of diapers), toastmasters at the con, if you don’t read Heinlein you’re not a real science fiction fan, sexism and hatred, push against that continuing pressure, people still say to Olav you need to read Heinlein or else, Heinlein explain to Farah Mendlesohn, lots of idiots on the internet, how much of it is trolling?, Will keeps saying Jesse’s a fan, Jesse runs a fanzine?, why is Heinlein important?, like saying H.G. Wells is important, if anything should be named after anything, Hugo Gernsback’s gonna get his due one day, adapting his work for the screen, Wells is basically forgotten, his stuff is amazing, The New Accelerator, a short story about methamphetamine, a hilarious very critical story of science and commercialism, H.G. Wells’ review of Metropolis, these turgid waters, a problem cohering, Jesse’s retort, this isn’t part of my identity, people fight over who is a fan, so intense for people, Robert Silverberg is just a cranky old man at this point, more heat than light, this conversation is turgid, parentage, until he signs up for the Venusian armed forces, the relationship romance stuff is very thin, there’s no kissing in this book, she kisses him, he could be a keeper, the tom tom girl, the wife who cooked the breakfast, a lack of female characters, the “I’m adult now” switch, adult decisions, initiated into adulthood, enlists by accident, the High Guard, the leeches, I have to stand up for what I believe in, I Will Fear No Evil, the decadent end of empire scene, New Chicago is mostly underground, when the “uncle” character, a huge tip, Heinlein is all the characters, he’s also Jubal Harshaw, the triumvirate we see most clearly in The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, the loveable sidekick, every kind of love interest, these types, why Heinlein is so controversial, he’s really engaging with stuff, he’s very intellectual, an ambivalence and equivocation, citizenships, gung-ho, when he gets the ring back, an argument over a point of principle, principle is the foundation of how Heinlein deals with everything, rudeness as a high crime, he is fundamentally express his own life philosophy, a short interview with Alec Nevala-Lee, Heinlein didn’t contribute in the way he wanted to, capable of changing the future by doing the equivalent of science, the training of the people who were all going to do that, China’s push on science fiction is a push on STEM, the relationship between science and engineering, got interested in science, the theoretical part of putting together a nuclear bomb, when Heinlein tries to contribute WWI, he didn’t make the Wonder Weapons, writing is thinking, imperialistic, having our hero be a Filipino, he’s an American just like us, nobody says “Philippines was a colony of the United States” (and still is, kinda), he doesn’t give that ring back to his girlfriend, he takes back his ring, he’s off in the stars in his head right now, her father is shocked, if that’s sexism, all women secretly want you to give them rings and not take them back, why so many people give women rings, he knew what he was doing, a strange spiking of his own narrative, he’s an adult now, I’m a man, he totally implied he was going to go back and get her, he’s kind of a dummy, fogeater fogeater fogeater, he was in the fog the whole time, I’m a man now, father, I fulfilled my commitments, an assumed happy ending, that interstellar starship, you have to be married to do it, the “wither thou goest” type, the frontier that Philip K. Dick is always going with, Friday, Red Planet, Dread Of Heinleinism by Charles Stross, a pastiche of one of a very specific few books, the underlying question, the answer is yes, people are determined to forget the past, how quickly the Venerians create the new bureaucracy, laws and currency, all this didactism, how rebellion is done, cell systems, no philosophy, very psychological, taxation, Mike is the government, Mike is the George Washington character, Heinlein being international, a citizen of the system, Evan is not offended by that, Thomas Paine, all the Tories move north or to England or to the Caribbean, a massive apathy, the Black diaspora, Sierra Leone, a propagandist for the French Revolution, The Rights Of Man, anachronistic, Glenn Beck, why the left adores Paine, anti-British, Liberty in a bottom up way, he’s not the coup d’etat part of the revolution, his message is not compatible with the United States, Che Guevara, Donald E. Westlake’s first published story as an adult, Patrick Henry, Jesse told this story three times, god gave him liberty, died of McCarthyism, the Monore doctrine, liberty liberty liberty, all these lies people are telling themselves, secular saints, its very important it is to read Heinlein to understand the United States, highly influential, utterly forgettable in plot and detail, Americans misunderstanding the united states, what Canadian health care is, are there death panels?, Heinlein is a little glimpse outside of the borders (by analogy), Olav got passed over by the death panel this month, ignorance spawned on purpose, how did this happen, Russia has socialized medicine, being facetious on purpose, Olav is trolling!, its probably slightly less worse in Canada, that’s Jordan Peterson, Rachel Notley, a small country, Evan hasn’t read that much Heinlein, Starship Troopers, everyone is saying you shouldn’t, Double Star, communication 100 years ago was shouting out the window, Michio Kaku, nobody calls him on it, apparently its Jesse’s job, what’s the logic what gets you angry…, that Jimmy Dore video, deep fear someone somewhere is having a good time, that kayfabe thing, Donald Trump doesn’t trigger Jesse at all, people like to be lied to, you tell yourself a fiction, allowing you to not think, The Dreams Our Stuff Is Made Of: How Science Fiction Conquered The World by Thomas M. Disch, “America is a nation of liars, and for that reason science fiction has a special claim to be our national literature, as the art form best adapted to telling the lies we like to hear and to pretend we believe”, what’s the USA immediately do when it finishes its revolutions, like Haiti did, why that coup d’etat line rings so true, their still called Governors, the Anglo-American legal system, protect property from the majority, a civil war about these issues, Scalzi’s blog post, one of the commenters wants to cancel Jefferson because he supported the French Revolution, except Haiti, biggest slaveholder around, a relatively egalitarian distribution of property, under his own ideology, a dream, the Homestead Act, co-opted by the railroads, the War of 1812, Henry Adams history is way to long for someone like Jesse (it is 2,000 pages), Hamiltonians, Wilson in this book?, what do we make of the Venerians?, the Little Fuzzies of this planet, Galileo, exchange students, Chinese and Korean students, a stripper name, Heinlein is uncancelled, John W. Campbell was a great writer, ?!.

Between Planets - illustrated by Darrell K. Sweet

Blackstone Audio - Between Planets by Robert A. Heinlein

Full Cast Audio - Between Planets by Robert A. Heinlein

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Planets In Combat by Robert A. Heinlein - Blue Book

Between Planets (comics adaptation)

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The SFFaudio Podcast #569 – READALONG: The Men In The Walls by William Tenn

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #569 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Maissa Bessada, and Will Emmons talk about The Men In The Walls by William Tenn

Talked about on today’s show:
The Men In The Walls by William Tenn, Of Men And Monsters, in the shower, bins full of books, homework, no ending coming, the ending was a beginning, a solid ending, absurd in a bleak way, a stinger in the tail, mocking and doing a genre, collection of William Tenn short stories, the William Tenn model of story, absurdist, satirizing, frustrated expectations, Eastward, Ho , The Liberation Of Earth, this dying Earth, a metaphor for Africa, allegory, why he isn’t known as a novelist, to sustain a novel, an overarching belief in something, humans are fucking ridiculous, early on the web, a RealAudio stream, On Venus, Have We Have A Rabbi!, not a word different, “Priests, For Their Learning”, I’ll grow up fast, “Soldiers, For Their Valor”, literally takes place in the next step, “Counselors, For Their Wisdom”, 1000% confidence, William Shakespeare, Tenn taught English for a living, to Sheila Solomon Klass, this place of salvation, a quote from Gulliver’s Travel, “the most pernicious race of little odious vermin that nature ever suffered to crawl upon the surface of the earth”, the land of the giants, a perfect fit, wholly new, puts them in their place, many ancestors to this book, The War Of The Worlds, how any one virtue is require for procurement of any one virtual, cockroaches or mice?, aspiring to the greatness of roaches, things completely outside humanity, the torture room, we’re all monsters, this book is very subversive, a cool idea, only 128 people are left, other tribes of mankind, he knows exactly what he’s doing, torturing these monsters is fine (because they’re not human), oh jeez, naive character, not a great book, misquote the quoter, Of Men And Monsters, easier to grasp, harder, Of Mice And Men, the institution vs the individual, trusting institutions, walking around the factory floor with long hair, your uncle your brother your sister your friend, people will be kind to you, Lenny and the other guy, their relationship, the labouring farm, a lecherous dude, a lecherous lady, navigable relationships, it ends in tragedy, Eric is our dumb character, the way of the world, slowly disabused of that, his uncle was also a fool, its not just we need a new king, government can’t help you really kid, I have no answers for you kid, the answer for Lenny, institutionalizing anything, it can’t care, summarizing Jesse’s point, the idea of the inhumanity of institutions juxtaposed to the human relationships we can have, put a cap on your hairs’ too long, capitalism, migrant labourers, mental handicap, he kills a woman, stop touching the rabbits, stop squeezing the ladies to death, Eric The Only, Eric The Eye, Eric The Outlaw, the church, the government, we can’t trust these human relationships either, about my vanity, folly, all the different tribes hate each other except for their leaders, it’s our planet buddy, a quietist tract, Man is alone in the world, as a young person, a product of his society, a statement about the society he is in, this is their mythology, a Harry Potter type character, destined to learn, smart enough eventually, try not be a roach anymore, H.P. Lovecraft’s The Rats In The Walls, humans to aliens, roaches to humans, a delicious scene, spending a lot of time analyzing what the aliens are thinking, sprayed by roach spray, hold your breath, count for 500 and run, a hissing whistling sound, a bed for the aliens, played the other way, his whole embarrassment in life is that he’s an only child, his only shame in life, mate with many wives and have massive litters, litters of puppies and kittens and mice and rats, pinkies, the most inhuman thing, mankind has changed, multiple babies at the same time, he’s a throwback, two three is common (up to six), wider hips?, the pill is a thing, restraining the pumping out of babies, over five litters two of them of maximum size, biologically possible but relatively rare, parthenogenesis, making twinning more common, fraternal or identical, old men at twenty, humans modified by a distant change, the religion and creed is pathetic and ridiculous, especially absurd groups of people, the national grouping is like a plains Indian thing, the people, so much worldbuilding here, restricted to Eric’s point of view, a very strange snapshot of the real world, Adam-Troy Castro: ‘imaginative and often witty simple and schematic nobody interesting not even the hero’, William Tenn was not a writer for writers, he was a writer gifted with writing but cursed with the knowledge of how humanity actually is, give ideas, he’s not supposed to be interesting, a traditional writer, I wanna be a writer, characters have to have motivation, what if we had the relationship that we have to ants, how would that go?, we lost Will, what’s wrong with that, Jo Walton, played for laughs, wryly and exclusively Tenn, not funny, but emotionally satisfying, it teaches you something, satisfying in a sense, feature not bug, the first line is a lie, two layers with that title, presented with facts and they’re subverted, how ->*”primitive”*<- people live, where everybody is a generalist, ridiculous leaders, executed or in prison, protests like you see in France or Hong Kong, everybody has to come out, classifying the kind of society, a hunter gatherer society, a social structure of mankind, hierarchy, make sure the food is edible, strange religious customs, cynically implemented, "a primitive people", somebody thought up agriculture, a post agricultural society, fascinating world-building, a hole at the bottom of the wall, alien food, the high absurdity is at is peak, the curtain is drawn away for us, a VCR with random buttons, ads for capitalism, two airplanes crash, a sale on cameras and a light meter, unthinking all hormones, sex with the ladies, being respected by his peers, did my dad have sex with other women because that'd be great if he did?, an inversion, oh my god BASTARD, the malleability of humans, how to take the pain, forced by circumstances into having his own thoughts about how to maybe run his life, forced into consciousness, a relevant book, a lot of people are vegans these days, projecting our own feelings into animals, it can be a pathology, not as obvious a trap, another kind of religion, we're trapped in the same way that Thomas Ligotti is saying we're trapped, a pitiable and curious state of mankind, personality and character rather than a presentment of the facts, Monty Python, Life's a piece of shit when you think of it, depressing and terrible but very accurate, am destiny story, all men are men, whatever magic, ancestor magic, he's the ONLY ONE, making only a good one, are we moving back, the idea of positioning, trying to relate it to mice, nesting in the spaces you aren’t, trees are fucking cold you don’t want to be in a tree, jars with lids, we crush them, Eric lives in the kitchen/bedroom, they have furniture, food, roach spray, one of them damn roaches again, and mysteriously everybody died, if its a depressing idea its a problem with the reader’s attitude, the novel is actually uplifting, deeply aesthetically satisfying (and upsetting on some level), the absurd reality of some man’s life, a sequel coming, a 1963 magazine, in Galaxy Magazine, the non-ephemeral nature of the paperback, if you didn’t get it that month you’ll never get it again, a physical copy of this book, a token of an achievement, a magazine feels like a newspaper, a childish way of looking at it, I’m not sure I can trust my sense, A Lamp From Medusa, a classic for our time, putting it in a package, a life of republication, what makes something a classic for the ages?, “Jesse, Moby-Dick‘s a famous book”, this novella was a classic of science fiction?, its not famous, a lost classic of science fiction, Richie Rich and Casper stuff…, so much going on in a short period of time, not a word wasted, fight for inclusion in a canon of anthropological science fiction, what is society, why do people do the things that we do, how do we know the things we know?, it keeps us sharp, received morality, the banality of evil, they did the crime so they need to do the time, abuse heaped up prisoners, that’s how the institution works, a layer was being peeled from your eye every few pages, my uncle’s not a hero?, we’re going to go into space!, an alternate interpretation, getting Eric out of the way, betrayed!, the French Revolution, restore the French monarchy, human science for humans, everything feeds into my podcast, The Penny Dreadfuls, The Brothers Faversham, satarizing everything, Richard E. Grant, The Scarlet Pimpernel, a proto-superhero, Maximilien Robespierre, how dare you!, why it came to this, why The Terror is happening, he didn’t have time for my speech, all of this farce of what caused the French Revolution, to take the other’s point of view as it is vs. the reality as we’ve framed it, the three estates, all three equal, choppin’ off heads is a good idea, once you get started breaking norms…, the effects of the French Revolution are still being felt, the Russian Revolution, the new word “adversary”, what the fuck you talking about, they like food and they enjoy TV, the button that Tenn is pressing, we like it a lot, a more obscure one, he’s a good writer and he’s got a nice sense of irony, a modern science fictional version of Jonathan Swift, slightly different from Robert Sheckley, slightly different from Douglas Adams, the broad brush, my loins are particularly tasty I’ve been fattening myself up, a Mark Twain-ness, this would make a really good audio drama, the sense of the big and the small, Oh, I’d really like to become a man, oooh she’s sexy, I hope somebody adapts it for an audio drama, Philip Jose Farmer, deeply sincere fictional beliefs, Will has that sense of humour, Phil Chenevert does a lot of Conan, he’s more whimsical, he’s is the naive light and fluffy, he’s perfect for this, The Slithering Shadow, a perfect Robert E. Howard voice, characterizing the writing as a gender, a combination of sensuousness and tooth and claw, perfectly attuned to Phil Chenevert’s voice, we’re laughing along, Donald E. Westlake’s The Spy In The Elevator.

Of Monsters And Men - Boris prelim

Of Men And Monsters by William Tenn, 1968 paperback illustration by Stephen Miller

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #382 – READALONG: Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #382 – Jesse, Paul, Julie Davis, and Maissa talk about Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini.

Talked about on today’s show:
1921, Captain Blood, The Sea Hawk, The Count Of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, the morality of this character, on his high horse, betraying the Revolution, completely detached, everybody in this novel is morally gray, maddeningly indistinct, not a hero, historical explanation, that is why the book is named “Scaramouche”, he is the goad, acting as Scaramouche, Aline holds up the virtue, the epitaph on Sabatini’s gravestone, a Prisoner Of Zenda situation, based on somebody real, “A Romance Of The French Revolution”, incendiary speeches, the “Paladin of the Third”, critiquing the excesses of the French Revolution, pro-Jacobean, the character has knowledge of the future, excusing a lot of the morality, we don’t know what he’s thinking until he opens his mouth, good writing, “the tiger is the great lord of the jungle…”, hunting the tiger, solidifying what the revolution meant, dual (duel) motivation, playing the actor, foreshadowing, acting, taking on the role of actor (orator and paladin), a Heinleinian hyper-competent character, the author forces the other Scaramouche off-stage, the comedy and drama, a great sequence, becoming the mask, the inner portion of his life is reflected out on to the stage, he is himself as his purest expression, he is best as Scaramouche, he’s happiest and most content as himself as Scaramouche, you did WHAT with WHO?, we are all the sport of destiny, why look at adaptations, the 1952 movie, dad vs. brother, liberty, equality fraternity, the Robe, Omnus Omnibus, the Buskin, the Sword, enraging the audience, the privileged estates, it becomes very meta, William Shakespeare, a horrible sequel (Scaramouche: The Kingmaker), the puppetry, the author is puppetting the characters, traditional swashbuckler, The Princess Pride without the comedy, other ways of telling the story, a revenge tale, A Tale Of Two Cities, Nicholas Nickleby, reading old books, writers who were ravenous readers first, Donald Westlake (Richard Stark), the Parker series, roll and repeat adventures, Scaramouche is just living, accessory criminals, Alan Grofield is an actor/criminal who gets his own spin-off series, The Score by Richard Stark, The Damsel, The Dame, The Blackbird, Benet, there is the other way…, Sabatini’s weakness is his third act, in the center of Islam, Simon Vance’s narration of Scaramouche, Gord Mackenzie’s narration (for LibriVox), expletive deleted, name of name!, in keeping with the 19th century literary tradition, a lost tale of the French Revolution, Lord Valentine’s Castle by Robert Silverberg, wandering Scaramouche-style, juggling, waking-up with amnesia, quasi-global government, The Old Curiosity Shop, commedia dell’arte, pantomime, improv, Who’s Line Is It Anyway?, pantaloon, harlequin, the little skirmisher, Shakespeare’s types, a learned-fool, a brooding older man, the maiden -> the nurse -> the matron, you’re playing pantaloon, more meta, reading books to become a fencing master, the opening is rather boring, but soon after we’re in a sword-fight, the man-on-the-run genre, as a lawyer, taking sides, raising and destroying a company, the trainee becomes the master, friendship, friendships that betray him, caring enough, carrying on a legacy, sucking up to power, at heart a good guy despite the threats, in bed or on board, the 1952 adaptation’s ending is better than the novel’s, a young Corsican officer, played for comedy, the seven-minute fight in the theater, I will meet you behind the cathedral, killing members of the titled classes, weird morality, shooting a good guy and forgiving the man you’re after revenge for, Mel Ferrer, “he had a string of wives and I understand why”, The Taming Of The Shrew, Stewart Granger, he’s not handsome, aha!, an unhandsome Errol Flynn, Tyrone Power, star-quality, The Prisoner Of Zenda, deep into French Revolution politics, the Revolutions Podcast, aristocrats vs. the Third Estate, deep into the weeds, we’re on a powder keg politically (brexit), biting off your own to spite your face, the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the titled (and entitled) classes, the estates: Nobility 1st, Church 2nd, 3rd People, 24% of the population of with 90% of the power, justice for the rich vs. justice for the poor, production efficiency since the French Revolution, the food industry, 1% of the 1%, everybody is fed, far away to the left, the sucking up to power is still around, class betrayal, bastard children, I was betrayed!, everybody is secretly noble, never mind all that revenge, that’s the reality we live in, the book is very realistic, people are people are people, there’s something noble about liberty, equality, fraternity, the resistors to change were pulling dirty tricks, sabotage and betrayal, “noble” and “honorable”, a calculated attack, a professional boxer challenging me to a fist-fight in the street, why dueling is banned, UFC, we should use our words (lawyers), Jesse went off, same sex relationships in 1796, can we not get passed this?, they freed every slave, a very honorable action, high morality, Alexandre Dumas’ father, The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss, Napoleon is a sketchy character, the Haitian Revolution, the Church’s stranglehold on France is gone, Quebec, the Quiet Revolution, Napoleon literally sold Louisiana out, Captain Blood, slavery in Barbados, many many pirates, given our success with Scaramouche … could a LibriVox narrator record Captain Blood and The Sea Hawk?

Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini - Famous Authors Illustrated
Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini - Famous Authors Illustrated

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #381 – AUDIOBOOK: Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Podcast

Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #381 – Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini, read by Gordon Mackenzie.

This UNABRIDGED AUDIOBOOK (16 hours 50 minutes) comes to us courtesy of LibriVox.

Scaramouche was first published in 1921.

The next SFFaudio Podcast will feature our discussion of it!

Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Posted by Jesse Willis

LibriVox: Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

SFFaudio Online Audio

If you’re just a poor boy you’ll appreciate this monstrosity sized FREE audiobook from LibriVox. From the author of Captain Blood and The Sea Hawk comes part of the inspiration for Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody: Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini!

If nothing else this audiobook will make you do the fandango! Check out the first line…

“He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad.”

LIBRIVOX - Scaramouche by Rafael SabatiniScaramouche
By Rafael Sabatini; Read by Gord Mackenzie
36 Zipped MP3 Files or Podcast – Approx. 17 Hours 12 Minutes [UNABRIDGED]
Publisher: LibriVox.org
Published: April 27, 2007
Scaramouche is a romantic adventure and tells the story of a young aristocrat during the French Revolution. His successive endeavors as a lawyer, politician, actor, lover, and buffoon lead his enemies to call him “Scaramouche,” but he impresses many with his elegant orations and precision swordsmanship.

Podcast feed: http://librivox.org/bookfeeds/scaramouche-by-rafael-sabatini.xml

iTunes 1-Click |SUBSCRIBE|

Incidentally, there’s a terrific 2005 BBC Radio 4 documentary on Bohemian Rhapsody available as a torrent on RadioArchive.cc:

I Will Not Let You Go: The Bohemian Rhapsody Story

And, here’s the trailer to the 1952 movie version of Scaramouche:

Posted by Jesse Willis