Originally posted by: utzoo!decvax!ucbvax!sf-lovers
Posted: Sun Dec 5 21:19:32 1982
Received: Mon Dec 6 09:38:52 1982
>From SFL@SRI-CSL Sun Dec 5 21:10:45 1982
Reply-To: SF-LOVERS at SRI-CSL
SF-LOVERS Digest Monday, 6 Dec 1982 Volume 6 : Issue 98
Books - Martin/Vinge's TRUE NAMES, Ellison's STALKING THE NIGHT-
MARE + SHATTERDAY + DEATHBIRD STORIES, Clarke's 2010
T.V. - Mazes and Monsters, Star Trek worst episodes
Movies - ideas for Lucasfilm, Star Wars / TESB / Revenge of the
Date: 3 Dec 82 22:26:21-PST (Fri)
From: gle!mhtsa!allegra!phr at Ucb-C70
Subject: Re: True Names
Jim Frenkel (the former editor of the Binary Star series at Dell) said
at a panel at Apricon V (a NYC one-day con held last month) that the
security leak which allowed you to get copies of Binary Star #5 by
mail-order from Dell has indeed been stopped, and that \\Dell will
reprint 'True Names' in trade paperback form in mid-1983//. This
would seem to confirm the rumor that Dell hoarded the remaining copies
to hang onto the pub rights. The book will probably contain True
Names all by itself, in a horribly overpriced edition with large type,
lots of blank pages, and so on, like Jonathan Livingston Seagull.
~= I think this action is despicable. Ace issuing SF in trade paper
before regular paper was bad enough; Dell has gone one better in the
eternal struggle for greed. Hardcovers, at least, have aesthetic
merits and carry some promise of withstanding the test of time, etc.
Trade paperbacks are nothing but an excuse for higher retail prices.
(Exception: publishers like Starblaze can justify it, because they're
only able to sell a limited number of copies and need to make back
Everyone should write letters to Dell deploring what they've done, and
demanding a rack paperback reprint of Binary Star #5 (Nightflyers is a
good story too). =~
PS. Has anyone asked Vernor Vinge what's going on? Does he show up at
West Coast cons (I'm in New Jersey)?
PPS. Jim Frenkel, who's a very nice person, is now running his own
publishing house called Bluejaybooks. I wish him well.
P3S. I've been told that the WSFS constitution was amended at Chicon
IV to allow works which received inadequate distribution in the year
they were published to be eligible for Hugo nomination a second time.
Can anyone confirm or comment on this? ~= Might True Names yet win
the Hugo award that it richly deserves? =~
Note: stuff enclosed as in '~= ... =~' is designated as flame. See
traffic for explanation.
Date: 5 Dec 82 13:54-PST
From: mclure at SRI-UNIX
His latest, STALKING THE NIGHTMARE, isn't up to the level of the one
immediately before it, SHATTERDAY... perhaps because of the inclusion
of much older material (from the late 50's no less) when Harlan's
narrative style wasn't quite as refined. And the rewrites can't gloss
over that fact. However, many of the personal anecdotes are very
entertaining (working at Disney, working on The Starlost, working at a
carny, guest of a call-in radio show, dying, etc.) I really enjoy
Harlan's extractions from his personal life.
A few years ago I happened to pick up a copy of his DEATHBIRD STORIES
which I now list among my 10 all-time favorite books and which made me
an Ellison aficionado. That collection is really quite amazing in its
depth and power. Admittedly, it is a selection of his best work up to
the time but for my money it is *the* best book he's published.
By the way, Ellison is one of the very few authors whose hardcovers I
purchase. They are beautifully produced, especially when they have
the Dillon covers like SHATTERDAY or DEATHBIRD STORIES; however, both
are available in paperback for the more budget-conscious.
Date: 5 Dec 82 12:13-PST
From: mclure at SRI-UNIX
Subject: 2010 review
n567 0431 05 Dec 82
A BOOK REVIEW
By Roland J. Green
(c) 1982 Chicago Sun-Times (Field News Service)
2010: Odyssey Two. By Arthur C. Clarke. Del ReyBallantine Books.
(Roland J. Green is a science fiction columnist for the Chicago
Arthur C. Clarke's return to fiction also is a return to the
familiar territory of the classic science fiction film ''2001: A Space
Odyssey.'' It is a thoroughly triumphant return, one of the
outstanding works of Clarke's career.
The book is a sequel to both the film and the novel based on its
screenplay. In both, an alien artifact, the famous black monolith, is
discovered in the moon crater of Tycho. An expedition goes out, in the
book to Jupiter and in the film to Saturn, seeking further traces of
the aliens. HAL 9000, the super computer controlling the ship
Discovery, goes out of control and kills all but one of the
astronauts. The sole survivor, David Bowman, discovers another
monolith, which turns out to be an interstellar gate left by the
aliens. He passes through it to the world of a distant star, is
transformed by the aliens into a being of pure energy, and as the Star
Child returns to Earth to scout and explore.
In ''Odyssey Two'' David Bowman plays a secondary role. The
character most on stage is scientist Dr. Heywood Floyd, sent to
Jupiter aboard the Soviet spaceship Alexei Leonev as part of an
expedition seeking to learn what happened to the Discovery, David
Bowman and HAL 9000. In his Star Child form Bowman tours Earth, then
returns to Jupiter to warn the Leonev expedition of the danger the
aliens' plans represent for them. There are other complications, as
well, such as a Chinese expedition that at great cost to itself
discovers life on the Jovian satellite Europa, and the problem of
bringing HAL 9000 back to life and sanity.
Where there was a conflict between the book and the film, Clarke
has followed the film, and ''Odyssey Two'' is stronger for it. Jupiter
and its satellites appear to be a livelier place than Saturn,
particularly in light of the knowledge gained by the Voyager probes
during the 1970s. Clarke has integrated this new knowledge into the
story in his usual deceptively effortless fashion. He is arguably the
best of modern SF writers at depicting the wonder of the universe, but
his rather austere prose can obscure this for readers unduly
preoccupied with style.
He also has integrated into the novel all his other customary
themes. He explores the supplanting of human intelligence by
computers, the evolution of intelligence itself beyond the limits of
matter, the problems of space flight and extraterrestrial life, both
sapient and non-sapient.
Not that ''Odyssey Two'' is a pure novel of ideas, assuming for
the sake of argument that there is such a thing. Clarke's dry wit is
as inimitable as ever. Indeed, the passage of years and the breakdown
of taboos in SF seem to have ripened it, or at least given it new
fields to roam.
Clarke's characterization calls for a special if brief discussion,
if only because it is so seldom judged by appropriate standards. This
is a novel, not a series of character sketches. It also is a novel
about reasonably rational human beings, scientific and engineering
professionals, on a dangerous mission in a highly artifical
environment. This tends to rule out the exotic sexual proclivities or
politically fashionable vices that would appeal to those with narrow
definitions of ''characterization.''
An objective reading of ''Odyssey Two'' will find Dr. Floyd an
excellent example of the character primarily serving as a viewpoint,
but also brought admirably to life by the breakup of his marriage. It
will find Dr. Chandra, HAL 9000's creator, a powerful picture of
almost religious dedication.
Any review can only skim the surface of a book so full of riches
as ''Odyssey Two.'' Indeed, it will take more than one reading to do
justice to a work that has to be ranked second only to ''Rendezvous
with Rama'' among Clarke's novels.
Date: 4 Dec 82 19:08:33-PST (Sat)
From: decvax!cwruecmp!honton at Ucb-C70
Subject: Dr. Who
My sister recently became a Dr. Who fan and wants to know where she
might get a hold of posters of the characters, etc.
Please send me any pointers to such items. Also, Dr. Who fans, can
you send your favorite plot, trivia, history etc?
Date: Thursday, 2 Dec 1982 09:14-PST
From: urban at rand-unix
Subject: Mazes and Monsters
About a year ago or more, I briefly reviewed a mainstream novel
entitled "Mazes and Monsters". This novel purports to deal with the
effects of fantasy role-playing games on a group of bright college
students. In fact, it's a rather poorly written college-romance
story. At the time, I said it was the sort of thing that would end up
as a movie for television.
December 28, on CBS.
Date: 4 Dec 82 21:26:22 EST (Sat)
From: John R Bane
Subject: Re: Movies in space, and ideas for Lucasfilms
I am not 100% sure of this, but I seem to remember that
somebody gave Lucasfilms the use of a Getaway Special slot on the
Shuttle. I don't know what could be done cinematically with one of
these (they have to fit in a meter-long, half-meter-wide cylinder).
Does anyone else know anything about this?
- Bob Bane
P.S. Lucasfilms has a VAX, supposedly known as the Dagobah system.
Are they on sf-lovers?
Date: Thu Dec 2 1982 15:16:01 PST
From: Lauren Weinstein
I'm certainly not a hard-core Trekkie, but it clearly seems to me that
the best episode (by far) was the ORIGINAL PILOT entitled "The Cage".
This is the one hour show (before Willie Shatner was brought in) from
which "The Menagerie" was later pieced together (along with
inconsistent new filler material). Many of the lines from "Menagerie"
that don't seem to make much sense (in the "flashback" footage) make
perfect sense when viewed in their original context. As it turns out,
some footage that would have helped keep everything logical was
stricken when "Menagerie" was edited, since some of the "Cage"
dialogue was considered too "racy" (ha!) to be used in its original
Rumor has it that only B&W prints of "Cage" are currently extant, even
though the footage from the show that we see in "Menagerie" was in
color. Certainly the print I've seen is monochrome.
I'll leave it to one of you *real* Trekkies to chronicle the history
behind "Cage" and the startup of the show on NBC. It's an interesting
Date: Sat Dec 4 19:04:35 1982
Subject: The Omega Glory -- The worst Trek?
Reply-to: decvax!idis!mi-cec!rwg at Ucb-C70
I'm surprised at the comments on "The Omega Glory." Yes, it has one
of those "Lost in Space" endings that you try to hide from people when
you are introducing them to Star Trek. But this is a fabulous episode
up to the point where Kirk and Tracy are captured by the Yangs. I
wouldn't mind seeing it redone, with the first two-thirds untouched
and a new ending bolted on.
Date: 3 Dec 82 18:27:55-PST (Fri)
From: npois!houxm!ihnp4!ihuxf!larry at Ucb-C70
Subject: Support for OB1 == clone
I just carefully listened to the video tape of episode 4 "A
New Hope". When Luke askes his uncle about old Ben, his uncle
replies: "I don't think he exists anymore. He died about the same
time as your father." What a strange statement when you take it out
of context! He doesn't THINK he exists --but-- he died the same time
as Luke's father?!!? Heavy indications of OB-1 being a clone!
Speaking of clones, why were the Jedi fighting them? How
'bout this: the process of cloning produces one good clone and one
bad clone. (Much like the Star Trek episode where the transporter
splits Kirk into a good and bad person.) This would back up Vader
being Luke's father
--via the evil clone (call him LFC-2 for Luke's Father Clone 2).
Then, could the "other" be Luke's father's good clone? (LCF-1) Great
Story! Luke and LCF-1 verses Vader (LCF-2) and the Empiror, who must
be OB-2, the evil Ben!!
Bell Labs, Naperville
Date: 4 Dec 82 21:02:29-PST (Sat)
From: harpo!floyd!cmcl2!philabs!sdcsvax!sdchema!pha at Ucb-C70
Subject: Re: The Other
Did it ever occur to any of you out there that "the other" might
be a character not yet introduced?
Nevertheless, I elect either Boba Fett or Luke's Father's good clone.
Date: 4 Dec 82 09:06:05 EST (Sat)
From: Andrew Scott Beals
Subject: cloning around....
By Andrew.umcp-cs@udel-relay and
If we're gonna get totally silly:
It seems to me that Han Solo is substancially (sp)
older than both Luke and Leia. (leia has allways seemed
to be a fres young .. to me, and han as seemed to
be about 35 or so)...anyway, leia is a clone of
solo (oh, give me a clone, of my own flesh and bone...),
with one chromosomal change. that would explain
why she's ignoring luke and going after han.
Date: 4 Dec 82 23:05:35 EST (Sat)
From: Andrew Scott Beals
Subject: RotJ the Other etc...
actually, leia got knocked up (to coin a phrase) by chewbacca ("i'd
rather kiss a wookie" "that can be arranged").
Date: 5-Dec-82 14:09:33-PST (Sun)
Subject: Star Wars <--> Tolkien
In reply to Jon's (JSol's) comments in ''another other,'' here's
something to think about (I'm not sure whether or not I'm serious at
this point!): A SW <--> Tolkien relationship. The way Jon brings out
the traits of the main characters in TESB, it is very easy to
contemplate the following relationships:
Luke <--> Frodo Vader <--> Sauron The Emperor <--> The Ring Obi-Wan
<--> Gandalf Yoda <--> Elrond
Date: 5-Dec-82 5:49PM-EST (Sun)
From: Nathaniel Mishkin
Subject: Meta-"Other" Discussion
Here's something to think about: while we-all are sitting here
chewing the electronic fat about the "other", there must be tens (if
not 100s) of people tucked away at Lucasfilm and elsewhere who KNOW
the whole truth. Perhaps the most expeditious thing to do would be to
beat up one of them. I mean, sure, they must have signed in blood
saying they wouldn't divulge the story, but when threatened with
bodily harm, most people come around.
End of SF-LOVERS Digest