Tag Archive: E.E. “Doc” Smith

green lantern movie

Are you telling me this ISN’T Science Fiction? Aliens, robots, weird things, futuristic cities…

It’s at times like this I had much deeper roots in the Comic industry than I do right now (Hey, Josh!), as the last few weeks have seen some interesting developments that made me jealous of whoever might step in to fill this role: DC Comics’ Geoff Johns is retiring from his position as chief writing peep on the Green Lantern comics, which may mean the titles associated with GL may be about to undergo a massive change in direction.

For the record I should state that I’ve never been big on superheroes, whether Marvel or DC. Growing up in the rural parts of the southwest UK meant that I had limited access to decent comics and I was weaned on a steady supply of Eagle and 2000AD – making me a staunch fan of Judge Dredd, Strontium Dog, Rogue Trooper, ABC Warriors, just to name a few. As a result, superheroes were always hokey to me. Sure, I read a few comics, watched some movies, but by the time I was out of young-adulthood, say 25-28, I could only say that a tiny handful of superhero oriented comics I had read were of any real value to me. Marvel’s Elektra: Assassin and DC Comic’s Marshal Law. It would be another five or six years until I read Watchmen and a few other guilty pleasures, such as League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. And of course, all these are largely critical of the superhero genre and its tropes. Yeah, me and Superheroes don’t get along much.

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Event Horizon: Singularity

The “Singularity” – informational, technological, or any other kind – keeps coming up in Science Fiction these days. The idea of it obviously the cause for much great science fiction, and of course this should be explored, but at the same time I wonder if it will shift the focus of science fiction toward this limit itself – and leave many other sections of the genre to wane in popularity.

Revolution to Revolution: First Edition of Triplanetary with its “modern” counterpart, Consider Phlebas.

Space opera, is a good example. I’ve long been a space opera fan, from its pulpiness to its hard science version in modernity. However, going back to read the Lensman series by E.E. “Doc” Smith is to submerge oneself in an archaic past. It’s very hard to go from Iain M. Banks’, Alastair Reynolds’ and Neal Asher’s worlds and read what is considered the pioneer of Space Opera. In his time, Smith was the cutting edge of SF, so much so that the US Navy operations were eventually inspired by his ideas. But fast-forward today and its all common place. None of the technology or ideas are particularly far reaching. Everything is dated. Even its characters who are so rooted in pre-1950 culture, where men are real men and women are… housewives.  Obviously that was the sign of the times and not everything is meant to last, but still, we’re talking 60 years ago.

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