Everything Is Nice

Beating the nice nice nice thing to death (with fluffy pillows)

Archive for December 10th, 2009

‘A Halloween Like Any Other’ by Michael Arsenault

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Another very short story that tries to wring humour out of having a delusional narrator. It fails.

Quality: *
Wit: *

Written by Martin

10 December 2009 at 22:40

Posted in sf, short stories

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Sometimes A Cigar Is Just A Cigar

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Gary Westfahl has just reviewed The Road for Locus Online:

Like the novel, the film is deliberately vague about precisely where in America the man and son are traveling south, but in one scene the father shows his son a fragment of a map to indicate their progress toward the coast, and we see that they are approaching a coastal city named Outland. Because I can locate no evidence that such a coastal city actually exists, this may be a reference to Berkeley Breathed’s sardonic comic strip about small-town America, Outland (1989-1995), to the 1981 film Outland (a version of High Noon in outer space featuring a lonely hero surrounded by villains), or to the World of Warcraft game’s “extradimensional realm” Outland, constructed out of the shattered remains of an orc planet.

I think we can safely assume that yes, this is a reference to World Of Warcraft.

Written by Martin

10 December 2009 at 15:51

Posted in films, sf

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‘I Love Paree’ by Cory Doctorow and Michael Skeet

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As you might expect from Doctorow, an extract of this story is available online where he comments:

I wrote the first part of this story as a sort-of response to Heinlein et al’s “bootcamp” stories; that is, stories about personal transformation brought on by violent, abusive training experiences. Having had some bootcamp-experiences (Clarion, for one, not to metion working on behind-deadline software projects), I had some opinions on the subject.

To me, it reads more like it is directly inspired by the brilliant Bruce Sterling but while it picks up the same themes Sterling uses, it isn’t written with the same quality. It is a glib story – one section is entitled Full Metal Baguette – and it is unable to reconcil this cheap delivery with the seriousness of what happens in the story. I think this is reflected in the fact Doctorow thinks that working on behind deadline software projects gives him experience of revolutionary forced labour.

Quality: **
Wit: ***

I actually like some of Doctorow’s early work, particularly Down And Out In the Magic Kingdom, but his recent fiction and non-fiction suggests he has undergone a process of dumbening.

Written by Martin

10 December 2009 at 13:23

‘Timmy And Tommy’s Thanksgiving Secret’ by Bradley Denton

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Tommy is Timmy’s best friend. He is a turkey.

Quality: *
Wit: *

Written by Martin

10 December 2009 at 09:51

Posted in sf, short stories

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