The SFFaudio Podcast #678 – Jesse, Paul Weimer, Evan Lampe, and Will Emmons talk about Starship Mutiny by Mike Resnick
Talked about on today’s show:
space opera, Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson, space opera is garbage, Star Trek with the serial numbers filed off, galactic civilization, Mirror Mirror, a perpetual war, a security officer, Yar abd Odo and Tuvok, sleeping with Big Brother, Big Sister, Nineteen Eighty-Four, she likes to watch, enjoying the voyeurism, nothing non-carnal, worshiping Wilson Cole like a god, a group of malcontents, Honor Harrington, the Honorverse, drugged out, an attack on the Honor Harringtonverse, Horatio Hornblower in space, broadsides, the pointlessness in being space opera, steelmanned space opera, Unconquerable Sun by Kate Elliott, Melinda Snodgrass, more nuanced and interesting, Alastair Reynolds, Greco-Persian wars in space, a female Alexander The Great, all gender flipped, the Pournelle Niven theory about space travel, better warps, there’s no worldbuilding in this novel, you are correct sir, one spaceship can blow up a planet, how much energy to blow up a planet, its a fuel dump, Space: 1999, slightly implausible, not a fig leaf of plausibility, did you enjoy the book, the lack of worldbuilding, he’s a great commander, he’s always right, do we have to do this again?, the way Socrates is always right, see what happened to him, explicitly designed to be a series, Will’s problem with it, telegraphing, it works, being the smartest man in the room, the canniest man, his instincts are always right, the author is cheating, sarcastic and sardonic, how much research put into this book, he did zero research, it probably took a week to write, hackwork, absolutely entertaining, Neal Stephenson, super easy reading, every book came out the year after the last one, I need some meat on some bones, some actual science fiction, extruded science product, a perfectly fine TV show, what colour are the uniforms?, the ship is grey, he doesn’t care about the ranks, all the services were amalgamated, flows easily and well, not to Paul’s taste, what makes it better?, more interesting and nuanced characters, worldbuilding, they have the same ethnicities we have the day, Mount Fuji, an oriental that’s 7 feet tall, a perfectly legitimate word, an inscrutable Chinaman, the news media, in jail awaiting his trial, commander Podok, this is a girl boss story, not the racism its the sexism, his theme, bureaucracy and military inefficiency, the message, its 2005, why can’t we win this Iraq War?, a Lincoln, WWII, this is a really political book, guess who went into the navy three years past the cutoff and given a rank of ensign and had no training as an officer, Hunter Biden, a lot of shitty officers, the whole premise of this book, we don’t know who they’re fighting, there will be a mutiny, the flagship, taking back the federation/republic, manly men doing manly things, a symbiont, the gorib, no deep worldbuilding at all, more anthropology, I’m the smartest guy in the room episode, dumb smart guys, The High Ground, criticizing patriarchal values, imperial space navy, exploring patriarchy and empire, an aristocratic empire in space, deeply into the world and the characters, crap, Measure Of The Man, Pen Pals, C.J. Cherryh, Downbelow Station, what its really like with people settling space, a bunch of old people, Falling Free by Lois McMaster Bujold, military SF, overlapping, Gareth L. Powell’s Embers Of War series, The Expanse, alien molecule, Alastair Reynolds land, pure storytelling, a little serialized, the horse people who can’t see too good during the day, painted on the cover, foreign editions, disposable science fiction, writing to be turned into a Netflix or Amazon series, the James S.A. Corey thing, right there in the business, The Wheel Of Time, Bryan Alexander’s review of Foundation TV series, add a lot of sex scenes to Foundation by Isaac Asimov, a novel series, subtle anthropological science fiction, Kirinyaga, Seven Views Of Olduvai Gorge, purely commercial (hackwork), smooth writing, why markets exist, manual labour, painting 3,000 square feet, interesting and hold your attention and fun, when sick, yard work, it serves a purpose, a space opera soap opera Star Treky universe, all the criticisms that we throw at it, this is not an intellectual stimulation delivery system, perfectly serviceable, there are stars in the universe, grav plats, wormholes and lightspeed, weapons systems, lightspeeds in an atmosphere, we’ll burn up due to fiction, pure space opera, military SF, star trek doesn’t feel like military SF, where Resnick feels comfortable, series stretch the idea of it being about science, making pain go away, very much like Soma, Paul did that on purpose, a different totalitarianism, the regular federation couldn’t have a mutiny, the most rotten thing of all is incompetent government, Biden’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, nobody was going to be held to account for this 20 year adventure in Afghanistan, didn’t do anything, couldn’t find anything, incompetence, the decline of the Empire (in Foundation), science fiction is always taking about the present, the buildings crashing down are suicide bombings, the anniversary of September 11, 2001, the author didn’t even know it was political, what they’re worried about in 1890 and 1920, they’re soaking in it, so obvious they don’t even state, retelling the story of the flight of the mercenaries our of Persia, retellings, if you want to sell a book, March Upcountry by David Weber and John Ringo, The Warriors (1979), is it really relevant or is it just a story?, how you end up with Rudy Guiliani, The Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson, ideas in what you read, leadership and the media, 2,500 pages with 400 ideas, anachronistic, magic gold, heavy gold, the guy who walked with god, Leibniz’s logic mill, careening, hefty intellectually, its not like your brain is a muscle exactly, Will and reality TV shows, brain decay because of this book, the Rastignac the Devil section, the gorib, handled completely differently, Wilson Cole’s inability to use they them pronouns, pilot/slick, a strawman situation, we need to give Chinese people American name, where did you get English names?, Winston is the most ridiculous name, don’t be another Anna, what gets Mike Resnick in trouble, science fiction drama, hotter back in the day, canceled after his death, unrepentant, I’m too old for this shit, Alex Acks, Dear Barry Malzberg, fuck you, SFWA bulletin, sexism allegation, bulletin magazine, the losses this industry has suffered, our old masters are dying, glad the old ways are dying, Jaym Gates, Jerry Pournelle, dead people gettin’ roasted, Resnick created the situation, our hero Wilson Cole doesn’t do that, a casual captain, lazy salutes, respect for the character, transgender, pronouns, its cool to assign people pronouns, sexism and assumptions, not kosher, these rules, offensive language, a religious practice, a cultural practice, keeping halal, eating pork everyday, Paul doesn’t need to apologize, redskin dream, this is wrong bud, Khartoum (1966), Chinese Gordon, Lawrence Oliver in blackface, Cecil Rhodes put Rachel Maddow through university, Cecil Rhodes is responsible for Russiagate, Will is a comics guy, people who are running the X-Men movie studio, X-Men is exclusionary, X-Folk, staying up nights, many internally think the title X-Men isn’t inclusionary, X-Ladies And Gents, XXs and XYs but no asking, we know there is a problem with the X-Men, stunningly incompetent, don’t make waves, I’m busy trying to get myself promoted here, rotated in, always making improvements, the Afghan army is now ready to take over, the warlords are sex trafficking children, it makes your bosses look bad, why it resonates a little bit, do I really need space opera in my life?, the gorib’s planet is called Rastignac The Devil by Philip Jose Farmer, a Clash Of The Titans remake, Will Durant’s The Life Of Greece, Stephen Fry, Avengers Ancient Greece, the Argo initiative, Eternals, Jack Kirby property, The Cosmic Puppets by Philip K. Dick, reality, what is it?, reality is whatever I say it is, Golan Globus, almost all dialogue, characters in conversation, pure storytelling, supposed Science Fiction on TV, fun dialogue, the characters are fun, passable entertainment, not a lot of dramatic tensions, The Voice, a break from this boomer, dealing with something real, planetoids, some asteroid with the same amount of air pressure as the Earth, The Little Prince, I need some real space opera, Catalyst Gate by Megan E. O’Keefe, science fiction ideas, more popcorny space opera, K.B. Wagers, not rebelling against the empire, always about rebelling against the empire, why people like Star Wars, I’m a Sith you’re a Jedi can’t we all get along?, we need to constantly rebel against the empire, retcon things, essentially the problem with series, what do you think it means that they’re always fighting for the empire and never against it, comforting and reifying the old order, Miles Vorkosigan is fighting for the empire, back to the 1920s and 1930s, reconciliation, they fight for the empire, classic fantasy tropey, space opera is much closer to fantasy than science fiction, Gene Roddenberry’s Andromeda, the ragtag fugitive fleet, the freed slaves, the girl boss in this book is wrong, killing civilians on your own side, deny the enemy materials, we have a duty to the empire, rooting for a prince to help other princes, so conservative, keep the empire going, bubbly easy reading, its very important they’re pirates, made some progress, The Last Of The Masters by Philip K. Dick.
The SFFaudio Podcast #677 – Jesse and Connor Kaye talk about The Weird And The Eerie by Mark Fisher
Talked about on today’s show:
Capitalist Realism, Connor’s suggestion, Watcher By The Threshold by John Buchan, The Willows by Algernon Blackwood is both weird and eerie, column of souls, an intrusion from outside, an otter or a man, an absence as opposed to a presence, what is vs. what isn’t there, a sense of agency, a force, an important distinction, building a concept on top, involving agency, Connor’s essay on folk horror, a disconnection between us, it meant something to somebody but it doesn’t mean that to us, disconnection through time, Stonehenge, folk horror is an eerie genre not a weird genre, a very interesting book, a David Lynch movie, Twin Peaks, seen most of the movies, heard none of the music, this book presented itself, the new chapter, that’s eerie, following a similar path (and seeing his life path ending), a despairing: Is There Any Alternative?, Blue Velvet (1986), is this weird or ear-y?, a sock on the side of a road, clothing or shoes, Spike Jonze’s How They Get There (1997), something curious vs. something eerie, sounds vs. manifestations, interchangeable, synonyms, Ghost Stories, Strange Stories, there’s something the name, Analog vs. Astounding, weird seems more common than eerie, a misunderstanding, weird interactions in your daily life, unusual and eerie are not really synonyms, its hard to create the sense of eeriness, shocking is easier, he wrote it after he’s dead, radical narrative modes, transcendental shock, de-centering the human subject, denaturalizing, Picnic At Hanging Rock (1975), Brian Eno, The Fall, Under The Skin (2013), better without the explanation, eeriness, its weird as well, Annihilation (2018), I’m watching this Russian movie with bad translation, the Andrei Tarkovsky movies, like 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) with a foreign language, Siberia, make so coffee?, no just sit there, Dwayne Johnson, in a garbage mood (when you’re sick), when you’re ready and you’ve trained yourself, unusual if not weird, have the right expectations, what the hell is this?, Scarlett Johansson may be an alien, understand what you’re seeing, appreciate the atmosphere, concretize, Nigel Kneale Quatermass And The Pit (1967), the colour adaptation, a subway tunnel they find an unexploded bomb and apemen scientist, weirdness with science fiction, dispelling the eeriness, Quatermass and a lady, breathing heavily and staring off, the importance of the human spirit, ending with a purge, an unconscious memory (programming), ape men with weird heads is unusual, government pressure to reopen the station, Professor Quatermass, your civilian rocket program is a military program, Colonel Breen, a German propaganda weapon, meta-evidence, the area had been haunted for centuries, eerie phenomena explainable by what’s buried beneath Hobb’s End, aliens from Mars, we are their descendants, psychic stuff, we can infer it was science based, what the Martians were doing on their planet and what we were doing to ourselves, a program of exploration, othering the enemy, a political movie, very Doctor Who-like, stuff is happening and we might get a quasi-explanation for it, why Data disappeared, offering a meta-question, a connection in Mark Fisher’s brain, transcendental shock, we might need to despair, capitalism eats it up, seeing Mark Fisher’s stuff everywhere, AOC’s TAX THE RICH dress, a masked servant, once you see it it is hard to unsee it, commodifying the resistance to commodifying, the “Squad”, we need to create a “ruckus”, an unannounced event with staffers, Nancy Pelosi, a fake protest (a protest with permission from you boss), “mamma bear”, the appearance of change, those evil Republicans, performance rather than action, vote for the Speaker of the House (“force the vote”), the Canadian Federal Election 2021, they’ve always had a plan and that plan is to say they have a plan, different reasons for being for the pipeline, we wanna work on it, we don’t want to talk about it, the corruption isn’t unknown, the other team is more corrupt so we can’t do anything about it, apathy, stupor, I hate the people you hate, there are a lot of people in this country worthy of hate and you know who you are, Margaret Thatcher’s pro-market slogan “There Is No Alternative”, engaged with modern philosopher’s, Slavoj Žižek, Jacques Derrida, organic, the sentiment, the vibe of the thing, a tough book to read during lockdown working from home, music points, rebellion was commodified in music, Rage Against The Machine, a product sold for money, made ingenuine even if made from a genuine place, if Mao Zedong suddenly got popular, Che t-shirts, Lovecraft, a tweet from the Snickers account about student debt, Nihilist Arby’s tweets, nothing matters, eat Arby’s, Moonpie twitter, unemployed English grads, a billionaire in Scotland got it all locked up, smart people forced to sell shit, temporarily embarrassed millionaires, an elite class, a useless piece of paper in exchange, bone spurs, the sensitivity, AOC’s team, just a way to boost your brand, Snickers can’t sympathize, there’s no escape, you haven’t hung yourself yet, The Parallax View (1974), go live in the woods, drop out, a dirt floor, a quad bike, how to escape running Snickers twitter account, not in the marriage market, women tend to like to have linoleum floors, no need for a Roomba, lucking through life, parents don’t understand, the commodification of education, artificial barriers, to communicate difficult truths requires the right mindset, they need to be eat and be warm, shooting a film, wilderness in the UK, looking at the landscape, the Romantic poets, they experienced things, a nice short book, some connection between the sensitivity of certain people, he’s really sensitive to stuff, H.P. Lovecraft and Philip K. Dick are connected in a way that is not obvious, Time Out Of Joint, Lovecraft stories are generally weird (not eerie), poverty in the country, Australia is vast, an enclave surrounded by thousands of kilometers of no people, compared to England, depopulated vs. unpopulated, left behind, I can just live here, you have to build up capital, the story of us all, Connor’s cohort moved away, capital demands that you move, a mobile society, you have to move, deep connections, is choice real?, its not that Quatermass wants to kill all the people around him its just that’s what humans do, memory transmissions or activation, are those the ones we must kill?, everybody is on team lynch, The Hanging Stranger by Philip K. Dick, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, capital is an eerie concept conjured from nothing and it directs everything (its the invisible hand), shadowy, the way it influences people is eerie, The Red Riding trilogy, who kills him?, the opening scene, the Space Needle, Seattle, a parade, a politician on a float, glad-handing, assassination, an assassin for the assassin, JFK’s assassination, Oswald and Ruby, I’m a patsy, lots and lots of evidence that the official story is bullshit, forty minutes into the movie, Hobbs And Shaw (2019) is garbage, there is no other responsible party he can turn to, deceiving the cops, its almost like this movie is about science, papers on Ivermectin’s use for treatment of covid, we have to do our own investigations, subject to the capitalist forces all around us, the tenuous connections as seen in the film, what it is a good movie (it allows participation by the viewer), when he deceives his handler, a snipe hunt to Hawaii, the guy who was driving the politician, what makes it weird or eerie is it is an unusual even that is difficult to replicate, meat robots with computers in our heads, a strong (non obvious connection), vaccines and the eeriness of capital, motivated by gaining capital, corporations are free floating motivation, ally yourself with a corporate team, a strong impulse, countries outside of the system like Cuba is making vaccines too, selling off our infrastructure and talent, one of the weirdest things: health Canada name changes for vaccines, a banding exercise, Washington Redskins, if you a person with principles you will do badly under capitalism, capitalism needs flexibility from its workers, a class of people who live on rent from other people, and a class of people who live on rent from investment, bitcoin mining, if you are willing to compromise your principles capitalism is for you, left behind or forgotten, make this a hypothetical, a continual drive to do more with less, people are lining up to be exploited, Ernst & Young, exploited, behind the scenes, everyone wants to be the person noticed, coercive, you’re not a company man, more overtime, how that effects the modern family, one of the national, the Liberal federal government (in Canada) and the NDP provincial government, early cheaper childcare, we have institutions for that, what the fuck went wrong?, is there a bottom to this?, the French revolution, the food problem vs. the housing problem, students in his classroom, a kid was wearing headphones in class, a confabulated story, the real answer is the thesis of his book, i can’t even hear it, I am that guy and I know those kids, Jesse is a weird guy, bone conduction headphones, do two podcasts a week, an excuse to hide what Jesse’s really afraid of, students can’t read sentences because they’re boring, I’m not allowed to play computer games, girls have it easier for school, give him a sword and throw him into a war, built into us as creatures, programmed into us, wealthy kids or adopted by wealthy people, exposure to the classics of literature, there are people who buy books, most people don’t read at all, the way people interact with words, words as symbols, word pictures, resistant to hashtags, the value of hashtags is irony, hashtags are a great way to punctuate a joke, using hashtags unironically is scary, more difficulty focusing, in his own writing, Weird Al Yankovic, intellectual stimulation, radio from the 1970s, we have instant access to whatever kind of streaming we want, you can do images on twitter, what’s the appeal of Instagram, twitter threads, removing capitals or adding punctuation or the clap emoji, taking in words through their eyes, bad spelling on youtube comments, why should they be ashamed?, twitter doesn’t need an edit button, gaslit all the time?, everything goes down the memory hole, the PDF Page was down for three weeks, being lied to about what the reality was, OCR, people change things over the years, this was that, an anthology of stories from different authors, the skeleton of the thing rather than the thing itself, the editorial introduction can sometimes tell you how to read, reality is slippery enough as it is, no one has time to read these classic works of literature, books written to be book length, filler and examples, the school industry, audible audiobooks, fetishizing reading, H.P. Podcraft is essentially a story summary podcast, Jesse doesn’t summarize stories, talking about The Outsider by H.P. Lovecraft, Surfacing by Margaret Atwood, Oryx And Crake, the argument Jesse makes to himself, an independent senator is shot, some other guy is shot, what kind of movie is it?, a crazy movie, these guys were indicted, it connects up, enter the contest, a core idea, the eerie events that happen with the film are all agented but not explained, innocuous events leading to innocuous events leading to unusual events, inferring there’s a bomb on the plane, this is the scientific process, your life my depend on a hypothesis, once we put our ideas out there that’s science, a consensus as to what was an wasn’t a good movie, a relatively new magazine, classic stories, technical objection, classic fiction from 2020?, we have some reprints too, the word “classic” is to bootstrap more sales, truth had value at one point, lying is something we think is bad because it interferes with our understanding with reality, what makes it true is that it has been tested and tested and tested over time, realism, what’s really happening?, what lie are we telling ourselves?, deep down you know it is a falsehood, sometimes it is genuine merit, some people have an ability to be productive, nepotism, how hard you seem to be working, Paul’s job, what happens, giving someone a promotion can create another problem, teachers grading themselves, outsourcing the job, whose the best shot in the unit?, teaching essay writing to grade 3 kids, eight year olds can’t write essays, judging essays, the factory Maoist element, what matters is they’re always making some improvement, make the writing fun for you, hauntology, Mr Jim Moon could be a BBC all by himself, defining people’s view of the present, 2022 is haunted by the past image of 2022, Back To The Future (1985), where’s my flying car?, we’re gonna be on Mars, optimism crumbling to pessimism, Jesse lived in a pirate town, the reason Star Wars (1977) looks the way it does is the WWII imagery, Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, we’re haunted by the endless Star Wars, the VHS tapes and constant broadcasts on HBO damaged us, The Tempest by Willy Shakes, a live performance, professional actors, 400 years of performances are gone and snuffed out, we can watch Ant Man (2015) over and over and over again, the new technology, capitalism’s virus is infecting us the way it wasn’t before, where’s the Jesse?, a treatment for immortality that requires you to delete your personality, Elidor by Alan Garner, Among Others by Jo Walton, media engagement, oral and visual cultures lecturer, drawing connections and creating a larger picture, a whitish name, math and chemistry tutoring, trained to study, a phone shapes a kid, playing games all night or watching streams, computer or video games are better than reading, sleep hygiene, it has only become more relevant, the repetition of culture, What Is Hauntology? by Mark Fisher, the way neoliberalism tends to reproduce rather than promote novelty, having real estate in somebody’s head is capital, how many TV shows exist now? 540 scripted English language TV shows, primetime, 3 hours a night for scripted TV, how is it that we’ve come to be able to support a larger number of scripted TV shows?, we’ve colonized people’s brains, there’s more people, with streaming you can have more than would fit on a channel, ABC 1 and 2, reruns in primetime, the original Star Trek, 700 Star Trek episodes, Netflix might be running a scam, there’s no independent auditing, a tulip inflation thing, now there’s all these shows and I can’t trust the reviews, IMBD is not trustworthy, what is valuable now is honesty about what’s worth your time, we’ve reversed our interaction with reality, blogs don’t exist anymore, blogging has turned into videos, how he became famous, a revise feature on Twitter, google street view through archiving, the difficulty of the world we live in now, how Connor got into early podcasts, new releases/recent arrivals, be the thing you want to see in the world, off the cuff thinking, chunks of words, people read that way, construct information just from hashtags, a symbol that conveys a bunch of information, at the beginning of the web, a spinning gif, engaging through apps, the difference between apps and programs, Jesse doesn’t ask for feedback, a serious storm, if you ask for things you get it, soliciting comments, when things go wrong, what people like about the podcast, stuff where we go off topic, a weird catchup at the start of podcasts, ideas in science fiction, through characters (people who wrote those books), Isaac Asimov is more like an encyclopedia, Philip K. Dick will definitely hit on my wife, there’s no such real thing as going off topic, why Joe Rogan is popular, leading to interested places, the after show and the pre-show as extra material, Reading, Short And Deep is popular but has fewer downloads, older people enjoy the shorter format show, a little breathing room, everything is relevant even tangentially, its important to not overthink what people don’t tell you about, issue both praise and criticism, you can trust me and I can trust me, comics reviews, goddamn this art is so good, Providence by Jacen Burrows and Alan Moore, a deep passion in two directions, we should call out the crappy things, this show will be out in seven months, when shownoting later, wait six months and see how you feel, when 9/11, a cathode ray tube, “this is not going to go well”, they’re not going to do this right, see how politicians voted, what they said back then, keeping a consistency of character over a long period of time is the opposite of gaslighting, at what point in a movie do you say this is fucked I’m out of here?, if they don’t care why do I care?, a new world parrot in Europe in 1300, a set dresser or somebody didn’t care, the only reason they do things is: squeeze more money (out of this product in your head), things are becoming more generic, 5 Spider-Man reboots, way more weird movies, an independent weird fiction movie The Endless (2017), shitty capitalist jobs, Heaven’s Gate cult, Algernon Blackwood’s The Willows, time relations, he’s really saying something, a shopping list, its our job to find the three things and say this is what you want, I am satisfied with the work, click a like button or rate out of five, iTunes reviews, the ratings are all gamed, fake followers, movies have incredible interest in doing this, Netflix’s rating system, a mini-scandal, manipulating you to trey to engage more, an existential movie disguised as a political thriller, The Stone Tape (1972), the reveal at the end, the way they portrayed the entity within the stones, Nigel Kneale has got the goods, real science fiction, an unlikable character but more real as a human being, Quatermass (1979), a millenarian end of the world, difficult concepts, they’re actually about the same thing, information within unalive objects, things that are dead, nothing is alive, somethings that are dead are temporarily alive, things that are locked inside, skulls, relics from five million years ago, there’s nothing alive there, in this race to compete, L. Ron Hubbard’s Scientology, trauma in our own lives, go clear, wouldn’t this be interesting?, why are we doing that? for reasons., there is no alternative, both of them start from a supernatural perspective, what mark Fisher is doing too, on the periphery of reality, I wasn’t doing this ironically, you don’t know what you’re doing, if you are a person who stood by principle you couldn’t have got in that position (or if you do what happens?), the company exists, who or what is running the company, somebody could do this, A Clockwork Orange (1971), that’s not a lie that’s a metaphor, people are subscribed to the Snickers account, the central argument of capitalist realism, is there any alternative?, a comedy thesis that could be true, the public square, gravity [monopoly], you’re a part of the system, Aaron Swartz, Unauthorized Bread by Cory Doctorow, Case from Neuromancer, creative commons, RSS, out from behind a paywall, blogs were killed, youtube, twitter, blogs, podcasts are the only thing that is left that is independent, Spotify, Audible has a podcast reader, the iPod and the ability to look for podcast submitted to iTunes, claim your podcast, just break the connection between the independent people, before Facebook there was MySpace, sharecropper, they killed this kid, Julian Assange, rentseeking, Jstor, he contributed so much to modern internet technology, not playing by the rules, not a billionaire and so he’s dead, writing about places you’ve never been, you don’t know how they go through a doorway, where does he plug in his iPhone, modern fantasy novels are Dungeons & Dragons, worldbuilding, when electricity came into being, how can you possibly teach me anything if the basic things you’re telling me are already wrong, does A Game Of Thrones have Earth’s Moon, a lot of nudity to distract us, a picture of Scott with George R.R. Martin, a floppy disk camera, the entourage of women, the con suite party, The Mystery Of Sylmare by Hugh Irish, Irish hue would be green, The Wind In The Willows by Kenneth Grahame, a fable with humans being the animals, a whisper version of The Wind In The Willows on Librivox, just a sex thing, proof listening, Wayne June, reading Edgar Allan Poe is way easier, a cosmicism poem for Reading, Short And Deep, one of the bests little sections, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, free as in speech or free as in beer?, gratis vs. libre, a good name for a political party: The Guillotine Party, all the billionaires get the chop but they all get ice cream, Elon Musk is last in line, we start from a position of guillotining everybody, when we get somebody up on the debate stage, the A.I. Party, we’ve tried the humans in charge and it isn’t working out, don’t let the Dems and the Repubs set the parameters for the debate, we kinda need a hardass, when Trump got kicked off twitter but was still president, these are all cops.
The SFFaudio Podcast #676 – Jesse, Scott Danielson, Will Emmons and Trish E. Matson talk about The Tempest by William Shakespeare
Talked about on today’s show:
not Willy Shakes, first performed on Hallowmass, 1611, a Royal Wedding, the day of the dead, November 1st, his last play?, spoken by Prospero, the conventional thing, ready to give up magic, now my charms are all o’erthrown, sent to Naples, with the help of your good hands, my ending is despair, never Shakespeare, a table reading, Broadway musicals, light comedies, Pride And Prejudice, a Southern Utah Shakespeare festival, a replica of The Globe, Julius Caesar, I’ve been bad but you should forgive me because you’ve been bad too, Prospero is a bad man, accomplished everything, made people acknowledge their faults, what got him into trouble in the first place, good but oblivious, an unreliable narrator, he’s a slaver, multiple slaves, penance for attempted rape, indentured servitude, Shakespeare by Mark Van Doren (1939), the wildest interpretation, it will not yield its secret easily, open to so many interpretations and restagings, five versions of The Tempest, Trish never got bored, The Tempest (2010) with Helen Mirren as Prospera, a stage production at Stratford, Ontario, Or What You Will by Jo Walton, As You Like It, a good reason to read a book, a late 9th century play that became very famous, a spark for every fire, let me not, bare island, your good hands, a Disney movie and a cartoon, audience participation, a device for engaging the audience, Tinkerbell will die unless you start clapping, Prospero is Shakespeare, Ariel is the stage director, a metaphor for being a writer, a BBC version from 1980, you will be free, he’s also talking to the audience, all in realtime, how many hours have passed, we have to get this all done by six, Ariel puts people to sleep to get to the next scene, every adaptation misses the comedy, the technical term “comedy”, the infodump scene at the beginning, they interpret the lines wrong or they cut them, how they got there, mostly Prospero talking, 12 years since thy father was the duke of Milan and a Prince of Power, thy mother was a piece of virtue, I don’t think my wife would have lied to me, do you mark me, sir your speech would relieve deafness, she keeps saying ya ya ya, getting bored, he’s asking the audience, she should be falling asleep, dost thou hear?, he keeps coming back are you paying attention, she retains none of it, its only for the audience, all the preceding twelve years, a different dynamic, dost thous pay attention, yeah I’m getting bored too, Shakespeare is attentive to infodumps being boring, bring your audience up to speed, Alonzo vs. Antonio, a master of craftsmanship, structure, high drama and low comedy, interleaving, assassination plots, a love story, Miranada and her father and Miranda and Ferdinand, costumes help, a tendency to focus on Ariel, Caliban is the greatest character (perhaps), stock characters, Caliban’s resentment, a rebellious slave, worshiping a false master, he’s Gollum, he had something taken from him, the culture, his gabardine, fart and drinking jokes, you want the meatiest role, Trunculo, stage presence, he’s reformed, a weakness in the play, is this play weak?, who is Caliban, he’s a native person, an Indian, bring him back and show him off at home, a native person we can display for money, Caliban is the character to obsess over, find somebody else to be slavish to, he’s too trusting, why people vibe with Caliban, the story is not friendly to Caliban, a 1960 movie with Richard Burton with Caliban, Roddy McDowell, Lee Remick, Prospero telling his slaves to do things, repeating his culture or making a commentary?, The Merchant Of Venice, Shylock, kind (at first), taught him language, tried to rape Miranda, white womanhood, what do we say about people we enslave and how they treat women, the colonized person, a justification for harsh treatment, savage people who need the kindly elevating structure of the colonists, Shakespeare is only interested in politics in what they can do to induce drama, a mini-utopia in it, how to improve Milan, Dido and the wedding, I think monarchy is a bad idea, organize things differently, the drama of the situation can deliver, perhaps the weakness is not there, suckered by Prospero, water with berries in it, and pets him, teaches him language, all the great things on the island, when Caliban wants to make more Calibans, an offense, getting above his station, he’s a pet, manipulate this prince of , not that way sirrah, Miranda is subject to his spells as well, The Taming Of The Shrew, women need to be slapped around, its a horror story, liberated women need to know there place, the third time, Stephano, I will feed your other mouth and the lesser legs, a Three Stooges dynamic, I’m in the belly of the fish, these guys must be gods, 410 years on, the Indians on this island are not going to be so passive, colonization of the new world, being exploited by Prospero (with words), I learned real good, now I’m gonna give up my art, if you want to walk away you have to clap, an intermission, from The X-Men, Asimov’s Robot novels written, same letters as cannibal, Caribbean, a savage, the Bermudas, three pamphlets on a ship called the Sea Adventure, Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, a great title, you haven’t seen anything yet, the vocabulary choices, strange 500 times, Milan, A most high miracle, I have cursed them without cause, compass thee about, oh wonder!, three shipwrecked sailors, sexy men, I’ve never seen them before, so many resonances, most current, The Tempest largely responsible for Star Trek, Stuart J. Byrne, Kirking computers, the definitive adaptation of The Tempest is Forbidden Planet (1956), very little in it that isn’t in Star Trek, the planet Altair, an away team, Spock, McCoy, and Bones, Robby The Robot is Ariel, what kind of scientist is it?, he’s a philologist, a lot of kissing going on, the angry force on the planet is Caliban, the newest announced Star Trek is Strange New Worlds, Requiem For Methuselah and What Are Little Girls Made Of?, the influence is undeniable, “wagon train to the stars”, guys who are making Westerns all day, Star Trek The Next Generation named after an episode of The Prisoner, Data is one of the men she sees, transfer his consciousness into Data’s body, what islands are in Science Fiction are planets, Planet Stories, beam people up to the ship to do their play, a native force with a whole backstory going on, Shakespeare is not Q in these episodes, checking up on a lost colony, other works, the opening 20 minutes of Forbidden Planet, the two pontoons of the warp nacelles, a flying saucer with pontoons sticking out, a play about a wizard from 400 years ago is largely responsible for a whole kind of Science Fiction, what percentage are we talking about 99% or 12%, it is the plot of The Tempest, all the characters are analogs, the visual elements, this is very much like an episode, The Tempest is the pilot for Star Trek, The Cage, Where No Man Has Gone Before, ESP powers, Star Trek: Continues, dealing with another form of science fiction, different islands in different states of political movements, Caliban is an alien, treated as non-human, half human, the devil, Setebos taken by Prospero, the only good thing about learning languages is to curse, cursing vs. swearing, breaking podcast rules?, exciting listening, you taught me language, the red plague rid you for learning me your language, hag seed hence, I’ll wrack these with old cramps, his art is of such power, his mom is a dam, make a vassal of him, having to fetch in wood, there’s wood enough within, penis jokes, gabardine scene, these brave spirits within, inherently cute, what makes Caliban ugly, misshapen, he wasn’t symmetrical, spotted, a stinky fish, a live fish, his arms fins, not shaped like a standard human, mixed race, objectively ugly, freckles are nice, he’s a fish man but that’s nice, The Shadow Over Innsmouth, influenced in dreams, double-thinking his concerns, invite him to a swimming party, under Devil’s reef, you’re gonna wear a crown bud, an anti-racist story, subject to interpretation, garments, Prospero’s magic robe, gabardine, the guy in The Goonies, The Shape Of Water, a sex/love object, Frankenstein, a beholder thing, a horrifying monster or too beautiful?, an abused child, a feral child story, Sycorax is a great character that’s not on stage, she taught him a language, gibbering howling noises, we don’t know how old Caliban was when his mother died, mistreated, dispossessed, the different kind of slave mentalities, re-imprisoned, always reward, how the service came to be, make a deal with a dwarf in the forest, you will be my servant, three miller’s apprentices, Doll I’ The Grass, a cat that takes a miller’s son as a servant, my anointed son, you can live with these two rotters, none of that for poor Caliban, “By this bottle which I made of the bark of a tree with my own hands since I was cast ashore.”, pathetic and funny, he swam ashore found the bark of a tree and made a drink from it, he made a bottle of a ship emptied the keg into a bottle, understanding begins to swell and begins to fill the reasonable shore, This Island Earth, “Pheobus’ steeds are foundered, night is chained below”, time time time, 32 x strange, hang cur hang, I’ll warrant him for drowning, an unstaunched wench, typical male Euro view, all the girls on stage except for Kate, many many great quotes, different interpretations, reinterpretations, This Rough Magic by Mary Stewart, Yellow Sky (1948), Miranda In Milan by Katharine Duckett, the modern version, class based relationships, the marriage in Tunis, three mentioned women, Miranda’s mother, a virtuous woman, the exile when Miranda was three, an arranged marriage, not at all eager for it, class/race/gender, sometimes they’re playing dress up, no escaping to the island of the Amazons, maids become wives or become mad and kill themselves, servants, what was Prospero’s beef with his brother, putting the coronet of Milan under the crown of Naples, Milan being the female and Naples being the male, arranging her marriage to the king of Naples son, it’s ok when I do it, all the Roman gods, presumably set in the Mediterranean, in the Roman world, there’s Ariel, Prospero putting away his books, putting away magic, a Christianizing, giving up his servant, Prospero is giving up his paganism, submitting himself to God, submitting to your husband’s desires, Hell is empty and all the devils are here, Ariel recounts it, naturalistic explanation, translating it into the science fiction explanation, a weather phenomenon, ball lightning is pretty obscure, St. Elmo’s fire, to control events, extending that to politics today and the media, this creation of a tempest in a teapot, to shipwreck on the islands, marry his daughter off, to satisfy the needs that he has, control and manipulation and gaslighting, Shakespeare’s stock and trade, abhorrent in the world, does it to characters in Macbeth and Hamlet, players, a very special power to story, it bypasses all of your reason and lodges itself in your head, not logical arguments, the audience goes in with consent (without not knowing what they’ve consented to), at this time in Shakespeare’s career, don’t get jailed, bypassing their reason, in the position of a fool, Alas, poor Yorik, I’m now holding his skull of, how did Yorik die?, Facebook and Biden don’t literally arrests you yet, habeas corpus is still kinda there, famous presidential people, James I and VI, he survived to give his second best bed to his wife, willing to rock boats in other lands than England, the power of story, Ruled Britannia by Harry Turtledove, what if?, Prospero played by woman, why it was gender flipped, Ariel is the traditional gender flip, when you gender flip Prospero it fucks with the text, Duchess, my dukedom, resonances break, Oh the heavens, Prospero talking about his brother, good wombs have born bad sons [siblings], seeing an old woman, a witch vs. a wizard, I like my books, a soft coup, Prospero’s POV, if you’re going to run a state, a city state, New Zealand or Taiwan can lock down the way Switzerland can’t, the guy locked away in his library story, the story of Caliban being a rapist, there’s no issue of consent here, if he’s an animal, two youngsters playing doctor, I’ve but seen to men before, a lot of wood jokes, sad story for him, give meaty roles for women, saving her from an angry crowd, Richard III is Hitler, several versions of Macbeth, Michael Fassbender as Macbeth, Ian McClellan, Hellen Mirren as Lady Macbeth, being swept along by events, notices the swastika on his armband, a more charitable reading of the play, making your own moral choices, their freedom, she’s a mermaid in one story, without a backward glance or with an affectionate glance, mostly dialogue and a few stage directions, different interpretations, all the performances never recorded, the novelist vs. the playwright, Julius Caesar is dramatic, ways people play Prospero: as a dodderer, straight (not wholly arch), he should be knowing, he’s made a mistake and doesn’t want to admit it, make the sword move or not move, his/her magic wand/staff, a great temptation to ham up things that are serious, make meat of everything that you’re given, the stinky fish with lesser legs, two lesser men in the play drunkin around as a comic relief, Ariel is accompanied by other spirits, that’s not in the play, a flexible young person, a robot, Leslie Nielsen’s gun, doing Prospero’s business, Caliban is an invisble monster, a force left over, a Sycorax-like force, studying “liberal arts”, the relationship between Prospero and Sycorax, the powers that he has at his command, graduating to wizarding school, his magic was good, she was a witch, the twin thing, Caliban is mirror by Ariel, one’s good and the other is good, one has power over the air, the other over the land, he’s stolen a kingdom in the way his brother has stolen his, he was evil from the start, that’s a cross not a dagger, think of your Jesus, dagger dagger dagger, fixated on interpretations, we hear about the props, a mininmalistic interpretation has three clumps of wood, enter Mariners wet, conveniently asleep, we can mine it forever, on to As You Like It for Scott, if this were played upon a stage…, Or What You Will by Jo Walton, Among Others, what I’ve been reading, not really a novel, he has been a dragon with a boy on his back, he has been a god, set in Thalia, stop off the wheel of mortality forever, a visit to Florence, a reporatory theater of characters, Romeo And Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing, every part was gender swapped, how the dynamics changed, the male people were the emotional ones, The Last Hawk by Catherine Asaro, another Star Trek episode, getting familiar with Shakespeare, tremendous, very important, still excited, Twelfth Night: or What You Will, comedies having gender swap, a romantic comedy, Viola and Sebastian, Duke Orsino, Countess Olivia, ends in a marriage, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Oberon and Galadriel, in a time when there’s birth control, its Fairyland, it can’t be translated into Science Fiction, a holodeck adventure, when Data is playing all the roles, Merchant Of Venice, Othello, other books to read.
The SFFaudio Podcast #675 – Jetta Of The Lowlands by Ray Cummings – read by Richard Kilmer. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the story (4 hours 5 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Evan Lampe, and Will Emmons
Talked about on today’s show:
a serial in Astounding Stories Of Super Science, Sept – November 1930, The Girl In The Golden Atom, The Diamond Lens by Fitz-James O’Brien, antisemitism precedes other forms of European racism, 600 stories, avoiding Cummings, full of shitty writing, the assistant to Edison, Huxley’s lab assistant, learned science from Darwin’s bulldog, science science science vs. invention, very pulpy, not awesome pulpy, filler, why is it this long?, the reading doesn’t help, the setting is interesting, is the setting that interesting?, it should be, a South American country, ecological disaster, bandit planet, a dull read, why pulp gets a bad name, the characters, a terrible book, acknowledging an error, how do you know?, should Ray Cummings be canceled?, not interesting enough to cancel, the years have canceled him, for those who managed to struggle through the audiobook and are now listening…, reading from E.F. Bleiler, science fiction and weird fiction, Science Fiction The Gernsback Years (page 87), entry 298, economic espionage and intrigue, 2020, north of Puerto Rico (dry sea bottom), Nerita, almost any word you can think of is a village in India, the National Detective Service, a lowlands bandit, mercury smuggling?, Spawn, Debeer, the ending is predictable, pure adventure, super-radio, light rays bent by magnetic fields, the lowland concept, more on this economic relation, a thug of the powerful state, colonial setting, there to take a child bride, Harry Turtledove, Down In The Bottomlands, set in a dry Mediterranean, a geographical lesson, where are the rivers, the seas, the lakes, what does this do to the rainfall, radioactive mercury, just a gimmick, its filler, get out from under Hugo Gernsback and get out under John W. Campbell, uncontroversial, I want you to think harder about this, getting tied up every few pages, a western movie serial, helicopter/airplane, secret gear, he fights science pirate, going to the kernel of the concept, better Ray Cummings, Phantoms Of Reality, different worlds at different vibrational wavelengths, you go to a weird little planet and weird little things happen, dies 1957, not able to adapt himself, about 350 1945-1942, 750 stories in all, a whole bunch of awesome concepts, three or four interesting ideas, like South America, an enforcer of empire, Jetta’s not even sexy, half mermaid?, she’s illiterate, when did the seas go down, a mercury rush, no Indians at the bottom of the sea, no displaced mermen?, what caused it?, one story and one book, Til A’ The Seas by Robert Barlow, a last man, pretty well done, H.P. Lovecraft helped polish it, the imagery is beautiful, Jack Vance’s Dying Earth, Olaf Stapledon-y, set at the bottom of the ocean, one of the biggest writers of the period, Cornell Woolrich, read him because you like tension, H.G. Wells, E.E. Doc Smith, the action sequences of Star Treks, lots of beams, wrist controls, they just invented force fields, Scotty trying to invent force fields and warp drive during the battle, Ted Chiang, Larry Niven, a lot more like Stanley G. Weinbaum and a lot less like John W. Campbell, the deGernsbacking, there was no sense that the reforms were needed, make me a serial out of it, why pulps get a bad name, Buck Rogers style serials, everything’s weird and there’s a lady and he needs to adapt, Flash Gordon, the slicks did it with essentially Superman’s origin story, Edwin Balmer and Philip Wylie’s When Worlds Collide, the exact same plot as 2012 (2009), everything is cliche, a Wonder Woman fetish person, the electrodes on the skin does it for Will, he’s getting a little tingle, that black knife, if it had been 1 hour long, somebody other than Ray Cummings, we learned something, there’s a reason he’s receded, what made pulps disposable, fiction magazines are sort of gone, alternate history, time travelers bring Kalashnikov to South during the U.S. Civil War, Adaptation by Mack Reynolds, how bad John W. Campbell was, a communist getting purchased by a fascist, a red brown alliance, not actually a fascist, Black Man’s Burden, Samuel Delaney is not a John W. Campbell writer, ornate?, do you believe a man at his word, he vibes with Mack Reynolds, colonial Africa, not trying to praise the white man, deep in his dementia, more New Wave than science fiction of the kind Weinbaum was doing, competing theses, a think piece that doesn’t and does resolve, a goofy concept, chill out for a few generations, the Aztec level of civilization at the time of Cortez’s contact, the Italian city states (late medieval early modern period), the Pedagog, state socialism or free market capitalism, the power goes to their heads, the natives run them out of town, a planned economy vs. a free market economy, it argues with the idea that only American style colonialism is good, productivism, forces of production Marxism, the natives appreciate, we’ll consider joining you, the capitalists and the socialists team up, free nations, science fiction writers for an against the Vietnam War, Howard vs. Lovecraft, the origins and the results and what it means for human nature, barbarism vs. civilization, Robert A. Heinlein, is barbarianism our natural state?, competing in the same pages, this story is my argument, we’re after mercury and its being smuggled, why?, don’t care, the only woman at the bottom of the well, that’s why I’m going on this adventure, radiumized!, the Star Trek, Kirk on a motorcycle, Red Matter has nothing to do with science fiction, not idea struggling, what did Evan say about this story?, contextualize it for us?, empire maybe, Wizard In Glass: Dark Tower 4 by Stephen King, an agent of a declining state, fantasy Mexico, a 14 or 15 year old sexy and brave character, the concubine of the mayor, a frontier region secretly in rebellion against the Empire, cool Stephen King stuff, criminal frontier full of bandits, smugglers, science pirates!, lots here about technology and the state, Seeing Like A State: How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed by James C. Scott, a letter, Ray Cummings should stay in Ray Cummings’ grave, a Lovecraft explainer explainer, explaining Lovecraft to his or her liberal friends, Lovecraft Mythos explainer, this phenomenon, dig up the bones of a guy who was dead before their grandma is born, The Painful Threshold: Why We Can’t Stop Flogging Lovecraft’s Dead Bloated Corpse, why Lovecraft Country is good and Lovecraft is bad, fox spirits, a new Netflix series with a Henry Kuttner and two H.P. Lovecraft stories, Graveyard Rats, Cool Air and The Statement Of Randolph Carter, Guillermo del Toro, missing the class analysis, Bobby Derie, Jesse has never met a racist reader, what was his cat’s name, hahahah, at the end of the serial of Jetta, the Invisible X-Fliers, October 1930, 2021, the Anti-War Department of the United States of Department, the defense department, mechanical invisibility, many men, great scientific discoveries, a new combination of older seemingly impractical knowledge, steal all the right stuff, making the inefficient efficient, almost no role in the book, bending of light rays, the cloaking device from Star Trek, the Martel Effects, two real kinds of currents, pseudoscience technobabble, camouflage style invisibility, Jack London’s rip off of The Invisible Man, Discover is Star Trek and Star Trek is science fiction, warp drive, not totally void of ideas, spore drive, warp drive, transwarp drive, transwarp conduits, the journey to get to the story, The Devil In The Dark, the last of her kind, mining some shit that doesn’t exist, silicon based life form and can we exist with a native population are two radical ideas, mind melds aren’t real, “NO KILL I”, Konglish, bringing in the Klingons again, bringing in the Romulans again, as if Spock is a traitor, who cares about Romulans?, there’s nothing there, we’ve dug you up we’ve had your cadaver trial and found you wanting, she liked to look at pictures in a book, I don’t know about this reading stuff, he’s black (with no skin and a republican too?), Todd McFarlane, blew up the comics industry, too obvious?, no secret keys to the name, a Volkswagen named after the character?, designed to be disposable.
The SFFaudio Podcast #673 – Inside Earth by Poul Anderson – read by Phil Chenevert. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the novelette (2 hours 3 Minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Paul Weimer, Scott Danielson, and Will Emmons
Talked about in today’s show: Inside Earth by Poul William Anderson, Galaxy Science Fiction, April 1951, The Marching Morons by C.M. Kornbluth, Beetlejuice Bridge by William Tenn, Nice Girl With Five Husbands by Fritz Leiber, Galaxy vs. Astounding vs. Planet Stories, a good reason to do a podcast, the content, its disturbing, extremely though provoking, racism, imperialism, presented in what Science Fiction does, pulling away from humanity for a second, thinking about a lot of things, isn’t this nifty, strands of thought, the libertarian camp, utopia, doing what the humans do, Will’s agenda, can’t trust them, what the message is, The Fall Of The Roman Empire (1964), part of the empire, Romanizing barbarians, unity, slavery of humanity, in a terrarium, indoctrinated, deprogrammed vs. programmed, interesting nuances, Valgonians, the best versions of themselves, who is defining best?, races and cultures and creeds, made into a Jew, a Norwegian, Levinson, comments throughout, written by the seat of his pants?, doubts about their plan, a poor plan?, infiltration, against their own people, The Americans, on the cover, a scene not even set on Earth, inside earth culture, fallen in love with a human, feelings for Barbara, get over his backstory of his dead wife, I was Earthling, being restored to normal, as complete and scarless, I’d be human again, the Klingons think they’re human, later Star Trek episodes, surgically altered humans and Klingons, nose ridge addition, convergent evolution, the Federation works like the Empire does here, Enterprise, guided on your tricycle, the Valgonian Empire, “slant eyed” is unfortunate, “it’s a very diverse empire”, two ways of looking at science fiction: 1. telling us about ourselves 2. how things could be, an analogy for something happening in the world vs. the Star Trek plan, how often Mr. Spock is an alien, Balance Of Terror, a WWII submarine vs. destroyers story, suspicious of Mr. Spock, Mrs. Spock is above suspicion, the actor’s a Jew but not the character, can we trust our Japanese soldiers?, can we trust our Navajo translators?, can we trust our German population?, war having a common enemy, this melting plot, the lack of skepticism on the part of our narrator, reeducation camps will work?, remake Afghanistan, 100% on board with it, I want another kid, they’ll sterilize me, its good to sterilize people, eugenics, hereditary taints, in 1951 its still there, how genetics work, the spirit bears, the same species as black bears, blonde hair isn’t a defect we think, but something definitely are, these people are resistant to a disease, genetic diseases, Huntington’s disease, Robert J. Sawyer, that level of protection against a fairly common disease, beneficial, neutral, or bad, in the scope that we have now, the Hari Seldon plan is never wrong, dentists who are social engineers, Will had to brush his teeth so he wouldn’t get sterilized, an uplift story, cultural uplift, the [David] Brin stories, Jesse didn’t start WWII, a certain set of people, the controls of power, Justin Trudeau is more responsible for climate change than I am, he solar system was in disarray, what’s the story this week, Afghanistan wins again!, we need to civilize them, two trillion dollars investment lasted a week, Hamid Karzai hugging the Taliban leaders, its liberation, just like the Russians, the British, Alexander the Great, very naive, a travelogue for something that happens a lot, something cops do all the time, infiltrate organizations, Martin Luther King, cops in the Environmental movement having children with people, he put her back on the list, oh he’s going with her, she’ll hate me for years (but its for his own good), the original plan, we’re going to the concentration camp together, meta evidence, just a reeducation camp or a death camp?, why is this report being told, a quasi-official report, bed talk, flying by the seat of his pants, who go into deep?, crushed and reeducated, oops, Poul Anderson tragedy, what it means to be a Valgonian, maybe he wants to take the punishment?, Dominic Flandry, agent for a galactic empire, what else are you going to do?, better than anarchy, disillusionment with empire, the strongest case, how Valgonian soldiers treat earth Terries, the SS showing up in Paris, Resistance movies set in occupied France, the occupied French people, we train them to be rude, treat the people nicely, don’t call them ragheads, be courteous, apparently not racist at all, play that up, super-interesting, the United Nations, a psychotechnic league story, Anderson’s political beliefs, world government, from pro-UN to anti-UN, its empire, the UN as a governing body for the world, while this is happening in Afghanistan, “it’s going to be really weird when in 6 months this podcast comes out”, Ender’s Game, H.G. Wells’ martians in The War Of The Worlds, I have no race prejudices, a menace to the peace of the galaxy, the lesser empire, no inferior races but only more or less advanced ones, The Man In The High Castle by Philip K. Dick, clashing for a difference in philosophy, the lies we tell ourselves about WWII, we won the war, its all about Europe, 80% of Germans were killed by the Russians, D-Day, one of the many many lies we tell ourselves about WWII, that was the just war, we have some doubts about the nuking of humans, firebomb the civilians all to death, WWI civilian casualties vs. WWII civilian casualties, A Bright Shining Lie (1988), Col. John Paul Vann, a true believer, a civil war for the liberation of a country from its occupiers, propping up the South Vietnam government is like propping up Karzai, how long?, centuries, thousands of years, Will is very shy but has ideas, pull together ideas, social engineering, where science fiction comes from: put smart people in front of dumb people, Paul says Will needs to read The Marching Morons (Jesse agrees, and says it is a bad story), we’ll be welcomed as liberators, top down speeches, always another excuse as to why we have to keep doing the war, this is just a story, this position in science fiction that is uncritical of technocracy and experts knowing what is better than other people, narcotic gas is like daddy coming to take the toys away, the most disturbing part of the story, paternalism, the general premise of the relationship with Barbara, lovey dovey story (been lying to her the whole time), she’s supposed to hate him for years she can’t help it, paternalism even in his romantic relationship, get queasy, a very interesting story, not the most well thought out story ever, an underground agent’s thoughts, its going to make me suffer when I flip on these people, a price you pay that your bosses don’t pay, hence promoted two ranks, an abstract evil, the meta-dialogue, what these titles mean, it even meant something, just sounds that came out of people’s mouths, an eagerness close to hero-worship, the colonel, if you use the language enough you get to believe it yourself, what does West Point teach its officers, engineering and road building and well digging, a tweets abandoning the Kurds, what the internal politics of the two parties will use against each other, using the Kurds against Bush, against Biden, woefully obtuse or lying or stupid, “abandon” or “support” the Kurds, now Jesse gets it, are their Valgonian factions pro or against, just the party line, if you’re people who are doing this, orders, we need a win hear, go take a building, you don’t need to know and you can’t inquire, a submission, its all lie, Jesse’s meta-text, maybe this is more sophisticated than it looks, Barbara’s picture, on page 35, she looks like a robot, she looks like a Stepford wife, our hero with the mohawk, ramrod straight, staring into space, she’s from an old family, she’s rich, he’s marrying into this old rich family, a wander the Earth guy, whose going to be top dog, a best friend he punches out, dirty ’30s hobo story, an awful lot of tramping going on on Earth, we’re told there’s no homelessness and no hunger anymore, only tackling inherent racism, the difference between the original Star Trek and the Next Generation, it comes back in Deep Space Nine, and to our profit, Voyager, the Maquis is the more sophisticated reading, admirals are almost always wrong, “the war is winnable”, the Thomas Friedman unit, Matt Taibbi, writing “the next six months will tell” for twenty years, New York Times columnists being consistently wrong for twenty years, your job pitch, returning to the story, time as a tramp and a steel worker and his time hanging out around Barbara’s house, it sounds like he’s trying to blow his cover, a very strange tonal note, let’s go kill a Valgonian vs. I try to be fair to everyone, class, we need to cultivate the elite of earth, help the Terries become whatever they need to be, at some point in the future, the Ferengis are going to become part of the Federation, the Dominion is the evil version of the Federation, our union that is called the Federation, the details on that, genetically engineered enforcers, their ultimate motivation, the solids don’t like shapeshifters, the Klingons and the Romulans can get along because they have four limbs and a head, Odo is an infiltration unit, the evil humans, we need to be incredibly skeptical of power, an endless fleet of admirals, policy this and plan that, you can’t trust it, as a provocateur isn’t to just start the wars its to include, the January 6th [*insurrection*] was infiltrated, the Whitmer kidnapping plot was infiltrated, a very flawed hero, should we have any respect for him?, the greater good going to be achieved or is this the occupation of the Philippines, enhanced interrogation for the greater good, kind of naive, a fun adventure vs. a guide for thought, in the thinking department, kind of juvenile?, written to quickly for pay?, Anderson is always competent but has no style, Philip K. Dick has weird grammatical stuff, H.P. Lovecraft has his own quirks, a Scandinavian, thematic, robots and boobs and weird grammar, the ideas flow very easily, internal monologue, the king of clarity is Asimov, Asimov is very simple, Anderson is a little silly, the muscles removed from his ears so they wouldn’t wiggle anymore, silliness and tragedy, the dead wife, Flight To Forever, super-nova class warships, a doomed romance, Tau Zero, a happy ever after polygamy story at the cost of the universe: “it was worth it”, fan theories, how the Klingons got that way, arguing for hours, page 36 (23 of the PDF), still capitalists and communists, a million petty divisions, an alien firm but just rule, why we have to be there, they’re so divided unlike us, that’s the way you have to run things, the messiness is what they’re against, what horrifies people the most on the deep web, the bottom of the iceberg of the deep web, whatever google has on its how page, way down deep, underneath all the car accidents and horror body porn, art pieces, tones and two color bars intersecting with each other, Voynich manuscript style websites, where’s the search bar, it needs to be ordered, spell everything the same way everyone else does, you are forced to go to school, you don’t want to live a disordered life do you?, you can’t make your own letter and put it in your own sentences, speech precedes the alphabet, this is the one way and the only way, we’re building roads and building bridges, the ultimate problem here, what does that education camp do, regular propaganda, it has to be felt, the weird bard symbolize all the races, the black site torture facilities, conform, A Clockwork Orange, Alex is a psychopath and a rapist, will should have a notebook, don’t impose a notebook on him, orthography is important, communicating efficiently with others, Sequoyah the Cherokee people, we will preserve our language by making it readable, the G8, all the people wearing suits, the Mao suit, the respectable white shirt and a tie and a jacket, Qaddafi, to honor his heritage, putting on that three piece suit to become legit, the Saudis don’t do that, a subversion with in the text (not on purpose), a psyop, Jesse doesn’t trust a plan, Qanon, foolish to trust any sort of authority, sunlight and cameras all over everybody’s business, a panopticon facing at the guards and their bosses, your average Valgonian, the stupid Section 31, the deep state doesn’t acknowledge their secret police, the FBI is not secret police, police are in other countries, they do the same job as the secret police, thought provoking but not a thought leading story, were you surprised to see the words sluts in 1951, sluts are good, what of it, how did he get away with that?, working class women with low morals, hair like molten golden, blonde or red-haired, the stepford type, Poul Anderson’s personal life, Astrid Anderson, Greg Bear, science fiction royalty, no kings or queens please, the cover picture, is one of these our guy?, Barbara is in the red dress, our guy is in the grey suit, more like a hive than a rebel base, a big conspiracy, the Valgonian conspiracy, the official line and what everybody knows, the official plan doesn’t seem to be like what everybody knows, talking to actual anarchists, we know the cops are trying to infiltrate us, dead give away you’re a Fed, looking for traitors, its sorta incoherent, an accelerationist theory, voting for Trump will make the thing that the United States come fast, tearing off the bandaid vs. slowly peeling it off, a faction of Christianity, Justin Trudeau, we need the funding from this pipeline to fight climate change, Jesse predicts the 2021 Canadian federal election results [sadly, accurately 5 weeks before it happened], not enough hope, what’s their hit rate, the domino theory, fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here’, the Taliban vs. Boogaloo Bois, joining the rebel alliance vs. subverting the rebel alliance, a fixup?, it was all a lie!, we aren’t told what I was told we were, a worthy read, Phil Chenevert made it very easy reading. Horace Gold, best of Galaxy (The Galaxy Reader), its a good story, needs a little something, what the point was, Terrie Like Me, an exploration of colonialism, the British in India, it doesn’t line up, the stratification, a copy of Britain, getting an upper middle class going, physically bigger, they’re cold because they’re red Scandinavian with mohawks, to fry an egg, pajamas and tea and curry and eastern mysticism, what do the Valgonians get?, why you have to be so occupy-y, buy into the empire, they want to pull their troops away, we don’t want to be occupying you but you still need us, we’re going to choose your rebellion leader for you, Karzai’s a trustworthy guy, Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s retrieval artist series, alien laws, The Disappeared, Childhood’s End by Arthur C. Clarke, apotheosis, science fiction properties, The Way Of The Pilgrim by Gordon Dickson, Jesse is ruined, smaller versions of us, you’re not worthy, the Dread Empire series by Walter Jon Williams, a parody of Paul’s writing would need “Shenanigans Happen” “you have to tweet that”, Will is sated by this conversation.
The SFFaudio Podcast #670 – Jesse, Evan Lampe, and Connor Kaye talk about The Troop by Nick Cutter
Talked about on today’s show:
Craig Davidson, 2014, body horror, you should read this, Farmer In The Sky, the Boy Scouts thing, sample, 1938 editorials, 1920s magazine formatting, dismissive of modern fiction, something to this book, Mr. Jim Moon, Marissa VU, why did Connor agree to do this book, pretty hookable, the worms got in your brain, the Stephen King quote, Jonathan Maberry, a book stands on its own, EarthCore by Scott Sigler, serialized podcast novel, competent, big evil corporation, bigger books now, he can almost make a living, Jesse’s on a rant, 4000 reviews vs. 16,000 reviews, not in the gutter, for the mainstreams, not targeted at Jesse, paperback mainstream horror market, Clive Barker, Stephen King,enjoy vs. get the ride, kind of sickening on purpose, Hellraiser (1987), scary cenobites, Cabin Fever (2002), am I supposed to want all these people to die?, top reviews, a big yawn, somebody’s jaded, “fuck this book” (rated five stars), a lot of gifs in people’s reviews, Goodreads as a social media, only 80 pages in, ridicule the fat kid, what kids do, the fat shaming of the fat kid, no women in this book, make the Doctor a woman, give her agency, a zombie book, a wendigo tale in a way, get the Algernon Blackwood out, a zombie apocalypse with 5 boys on an island, weird news website, “Cheeseburger Kills Space Alien”, worldbuilding for what’s happening and what will come, Evan is reading everything King wrote, influenced by King’s Carrie, global, Evan’s YouTube channel, Dreamcatcher, that Shelly character, It by Stephen King, backstory, that stage of life, comparing to King, any story with 4 boys in it is compared to The Body or It, Ephraim, a thrill junkie, heavy on the character, I’m reading that book you gave me, I wanna see all of these boys die, develop suspense, a novel designed to be a novel, as opposed to a story, a booklength study, what about the mainland?, Starvin’ Marvin, an incredibly well done paint by numbers, why is this all happening, sustaining of a certain mood, Lovecraft’s payoffs, the communication about a certain way of seeing reality, 11 hours, similes, endless similes, how something smells, Nick Cutter’s favourite thing is the smell of something, this book is about hitting you in the fears, such a common feeling, is that hunger something deeper?, throw in a psychopath, this isn’t a true story, Nick and Cutter I should have seen it coming, the appeal, ticking off a powerful fear, making comparisons to Mengele, Herbert West Re-Animator, a lab leak book, that weight loss drug, thinspiration!, eat whatever you want!, the background stuff, how did this all happen, is it fully contained?, why it appeals as movie (a built in ending), spending 11 hours with 14 year olds, Lord Of The Flies by William Golding, set during WWIII, the psychology of a bunch of boys on an island, a sick book, why are we pushing THIS book, The Walking Dead, reduced to crazy brutal violent hierarchical social relations, people being shitty to each other, the history of people in crisis and society in crisis, that [Thomas] Hobbesian world, Walking Dead: The World Beyond, a high school drama, we’re told they’re smart, they say smart things, a regular high school drama set in zombieworld, trying on a series of how to live together, they’re primitive communists, drama happens, canned food 10 years after the zombie apocalypse, a planetary crisis about to happen, the least interesting set of kids, Jesse’s not learning anything from it, the cover up, the lab leak, the former head of the CDC, not a wet-market story, it happens, a town known for doing this, Fauci testifying, Rand Paul, there is a cover up going on, they’re doing it because they want to develop weapons, the doctor as a scapegoat, GQ, worms are really tough, Max Kirkwood, these interstices bits, Alex Markson, Nick Cutter knows how to write, what are we really getting?, the weight loss drug, violence towards animals, a vegan interpretation of this, where it connects, am I the only one bothered by the graphic animal abuse scenes, essential to your dinner, I’m made out of meat, where we are, gooseberries want to be eaten but not too much, there’s a war, poisons and thorns, that’s just the plants, your hot dog didn’t want to be eaten it lived on a farm somewhere, we get old, we get feeble, we get infections, so smooth, why do I need this reminder?, why do they need this reminder?, rollercoasters, trying to eat the turtle, the vegan message, the anti-factory farming message?, having to slaughter animals, where the meat comes from, Boy Scouts, a simulation, he doesn’t do anything with it, Boy Scouting gear, the belt pouch, the sash with all the achievements, swearing allegiance to the queen and to god?, soldiers shooting the kid, Scouts during WWI, quasi militaristic, jamboreeing with, the meat-grinder that is WWI, ribbons, making new uniforms and grave signs, bullets and bombs and aircraft, there’s a lesson, it sucks to be ground up into chow, when politicians tell me about WWI, it made us into a country, this is not propaganda at all, its nothing, there’s no message, experiences, interesting scene here, interesting scene there, the ending when Max goes back to the island, what the book was about, he felt a hunger inside, Chapter 50, Falstaff Island, all the similes, the sterile chlorine smell of a public pool, a nameless hunger, with teeth that called his name, forever changed by this experience, a cop-out of an ending vs. the experiences have opened his eyes to the horror of reality, what is he going back to the island for?, the way he had to end it, what did I read this book for, Jason or Freddy Kruger?, the amazing worm boy strikes again, a lot of bullying in this book, the surgery, it needed to happen (technically), needing to establish the worm is inside them, what it looks like, sore throats and hangnails, the doctor scoutmaster, the parental figure becomes helpless, it works, you’ve seen horror movies, a horror movie trope, its a recipe, this is a real message, Poe lingers over the disgusting, big pile guts fall, some kid is cutting on his arm, pull a guy’s scalp off, go for the gross-out, horror, terror, the loving depiction of the gross out, Hannibal Lector, sauteing a guy’s brain and feeding it to him, its something to do, the medical scene in The Exorcist (1973), the vegan interpretation again, page 169, devourer vs. conqueror worms, the non-island boys part, hydatid infestation, subject is… “the window period the window period”, The Conqueror Worm by Edgar Allan Poe, highly interpretable, all sorts of things (not all of them involving pizza), seize it not, horror the soul of the plot, we are our own worst enemy, a horror show, in human gore imbued, the play is the tragedy Man, all these diseases we’re getting, I’m eating food made of meat, its kind of gross, you shouldn’t exist, you gonna get infected, is there nothing more substantial here, the whole appeal of body horror, a Lovecraftian element, a thing from outside we can use as a metaphor, fear to sleep, I wanna go to the doctor and get de-wormed, I don’t wanna watch the video, too horrific, Hellraiser is a cool story, outer forces, without the snippets, it would appear to them be supernatural, the surgery and knowing, just a description of what’s happening, The Colour Out Of Space is kinda sad an disgusting, when the speedboat gets taken down by the military, on the inside looking out at things you don’t understand, Pontypool (2008), a zombie movie with words, set in a radio station, The Night Wire by H.F. Arnold, The Mist by Stephen King, start it with chapter 10, wonderful horrible, the interstices reassure you that the body horror is cleaner, just enjoy the infection rather than what causes the infection, a virus, a covid book, its in your meat, its swimming behind your eyes, something inside your head telling your what to do, see the infection spread, lampshade it as much as you want, you need to have that infection spread, a cosmic fear, its just a plain-old infection, cutting into himself, I don’t watch Star Trek for the phaser fights, phaser fights are stuff to do, The Strain, worms are kinda gross, low hanging fruit, tapeworms and what they can do, get a rise out of your fellow campers, emotionally manipulating other people as a way of being, infecting themselves with tapeworms to loose weight, extreme measures, he dwells on it, mundane and popular, a pharmaceutical leak, something not in the audiobook, the acknowledgements, you may have something here, Kickass Kirby Kim, we could possibly have something here, we may just have something here, Thestomax, Carrie was a great inspiration, borrow, steal, Carrie‘s chassis, honor the master, he named his kid after his pseudonym, he’s eating for a family now, just a scary scary book, tapeworms are disgusting, throughout nature, they’re everywhere, a very good book about visceral gross-out, it weighs a certain amount of grams, a cheeseburger of a book, The Midnight Meat Train (2008), CHUD movies, people in the underground interacting with people in the overground, a weird tales as a body horror, the imagery, helping the baby turtles into the ocean, it doesn’t have a message, The Thing (1982), a cosmic-ness to that body horror, its all what it is, the whole military angle, the pharmaceutical industry, it doesn’t pay off, the government cover-up, an end of the world movie where they spend a lot of time looking at people watching TV, reaction videos on YouTube, to manipulate emotion vs. giving understanding, why aren’t the Americans in on this, Canada doesn’t have any Apache helicopters, he takes order from…, he’s taking orders from the bug inside him, a technically good book with almost nothing in it, The Lord Of The Flies, they turn to Satan, kids will turn on each other, people will, its all on the island, its all about what’s happening on the island, if you don’t notice it, On The Beach by Nevil Shute, Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden, a military experiment, other lab leak books, The Stand, where did this other funding come from?, when Fauci is funding the Wuhan lab, my bureaucracy, my scientists want to do it but more importantly it expands my empire, we have this money, back to P.E.I. proper, hiding some information, make it eerie, he needs to put that stuff in there, this is not a horror movie of the Freddy Kruger kind it is a mundane horror, what the adults have done, not participating in the book, Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, the banality of a pharmaceutical greed and superficiality, the antithesis of beauty is body horror, literally a lampshade, the inner views of what people are thinking, the lurking voice in the background, videogames on rails, you’re subject, no room for you, spoonfed to you, with Stephen King there’s space to mull, coming from the unconscious vs. coming from the conscious, why is The Thing more horrifying, a pretty damn good book, hitting all the right points, there’s no heft, you don’t carry it with you when you’re done, how is this book supposed to be received, Stephen King has something niggling inside him, other books, The Deep, Rust And Bone, to promote his book, steroids and boxing matches, Evan doesn’t care that much about promoting his podcast, a 16 week steroid cycle, a Toronto poet, something Hemingway would do, Daniel Day-Lewis, very method, examined the field, replicate the effect he is going for, The Violin And The Void, rank all your books by ranking them against other books you’ve read, ranking your books, SABCDEF rankings, always talking about Neuromancer, ways of ranking things, not substantial, a well done exercise in body horror, The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker, we could be done, it wasn’t the worst book I’ve ever read, compared to Farmer In The Sky, it didn’t have to be boy scouts, boy scout values, redeeming the surgery scene, he has a message there, the adults are prominent in memory, the characterization is really good, the misunderstood fat kid, Newton, Kent the jock, the psychology is very solid, why it exists, body horror has a limit, vegans bring that to the table, the brutality of survival, they don’t even eat the turtle, they give it to Satan, look at these boys, nobody has learned anything, a wendigo tale in a modern environment, Ravenous (1999), comedy, comic aspects, boing sound effects, juxtaposition, a good wendigo story, drawing on the folklore of the wendigo, the gluttonous wendigo, not a hint of wendigo, he’s only thinking about tapeworms, in conjunction with the pharmaceutical weight loss, drugs turn yourself on turn yourself off, the two pill solution, back stories help a little bit, it doesn’t deliver on some agenda that the author has, no agendas in their pulp fiction, naive, having an agenda makes for potentially interesting stuff, Tolkien has an agenda, there’s no politics, there’s nothing we can do with this information, we really got to stop eating tapeworms, drive to create products, technically a very horrible book, Evan has a statement, negative reviews on Goodreads, offended by this book existing, body horror is nature, no one warned me before I picked up this book, what do people want in books?, if you want a happy ending don’t read body horror, a kick out of horror, a good book and Connor enjoyed reading it, Saw (2004) is one of the best horror movies ever, the consequences of wanting to live, walking around in Shelly’s skin is disgusting, not having principles, voting for Biden = bombing kids, getting a boner for most of this book, tearing the wings off of things and squishing eyeballs, Shelly’s just a victim in the popular memory of this event, the doctor is the scapegoat, it makes the book longer, we get him being punished for being bad, the narrator knows he was an evil psychopath, Patrick Hockstetter, a motivating force in the plot, thwarting our heroes, stealing the spark plugs, just cause a things exists in the world doesn’t mean we have to spend a long time thinking about it, like a fetish, napalm, people who afraid to swim in lakes and the ocean, the thing in the lake, the fetish people who loved the rollercoaster, subject to this scary ride, fulfilling some sort of person’s fetish, well framed, well lit pornography.