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Christian

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Christian last won the day on September 17

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About Christian

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    The Last One
  • Birthday 02/22/1975

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    Brigadoon
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    I work as a short fiction writer
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  1. Marvel's One World Order

    Well, so far we haven't put anybody in concentration camps..... It would be closer to what happened in Nazi Germany after the war. Except, I expect that Marvel won't ever mention it again going forward. Which is sort of awkward. Nor do I really want them to, honestly. I'd rather the Marvel Universe be a place I can escape to, not a place where I have to be reminded of things like Donald Trump or Charlottesville again. Where the hell am I supposed to transmogrify myself to in 2012 when the world ends? I guess there is some precedent with the Japanese-American citizens put in to interment camps in the US, where after WWII, everyone just sort of pretended that it never happened.
  2. Marvel's One World Order

    Eh, that wouldn't fit with Steve Rogers either. They used the fascist mind-set with Steve Rogers just now with Secret Empire anyway. Rogers was never a blind patriot who followed whatever the government said. You can go back to the Steven Engelhart run on Captain America, when Steve Rogers gave up being Captain America after the events of Watergate with Nixon. Then, in the 1980s, Steve Rogers gave up being Cap again, when Reagan wanted him to work for the federal government. The "super-patriot" US Agent took up the mantle of Captain America.
  3. Marvel's One World Order

    Sure, sure. I'm pretty sure we already had this argument about Civil War. It's an imperfect metaphor, but it's to be read as an analogy, in a fictional universe. Otherwise, the stories would just be social realism stories about people dealing with real world issues. You have to use your suspension of disbelief. Tony Stark was George W. Bush. Civil War was September 11th, 2001 and the Patriot Act. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Oh, and mutants work within the context of comics because people are so scared about mutants in their midst, but yet, they treat characters like the Avengers as shining icons. Iron Man might destroy half of New York City fighting a super-villain, but Iron Man still gets cheered. Yet, when it comes to mutants, they're the "Other" and to be feared and hated. So, it does work. It's not just that people are afraid because a mutant could have a destructive power (unlike, say, a gay person). Otherwise, they'd be just as afraid of any superheroes with vast powers.
  4. Marvel's One World Order

    I guess I can see you point about Frank Castle. I'm not that big a fan of the character myself. It's my same feelings when a character like Tony Stark or Steve Rogers is written so out of character. I don't remember that scene with the Punisher and Steve Rogers....maybe it was in one of the spin-off books I didn't read. I do remember that Frank Castle said something about how he was working with Hydra, because once Rogers had the Cosmic Cube he was going to establish Order in the world, by changing history so that everyone was loyal to Hydra. In that sense, Frank Castle would accept that, as it would finally end his war. Steve Rogers said he was going to set everything right, so that everyone who died in Hydra's invasion of America would be brought back to life. Rogers also believed in the Red Skull's lie that the Axis powers were going to win World War II, but then the Allies created the Cosmic Cube, and used it to change history, making it so that Steve Rogers was loyal to liberalism and democracy. Rogers told everyone loyal to him this lie, believing it to be true, and then said that he was just setting history right by using the Cosmic Cube to make it so that everyone was loyal to Hydra. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The first Civil War drove me insane, with its character-assassination of Tony Stark. I'm not the biggest Tony Stark fan (CEOs of transnational corporations usually aren't my favourite people), but I have read the majority of Iron Man comic books. While I can appreciate Millar wanting to use a corporate figure to represent W. Bush's plutocracy, going against a true patriot in Captain America....it was wildly out of character for Stark. It would have worked better had he used someone like Norman Osbourne. I guess that's the problem when a writer wants to tell a story about how easy it is to fall for authoritarianism, some superhero has to take the fall in the name of The Story. I mean, Tony Stark spent the 1980s fighting against the federal government for over-reach and his refusal to get involved with government corruption and weapons manufacturing again. Marvel worked so hard in the 1970s to try to turn this selfish asshole character accidentally created by Stan Lee (hey, he was a Cold War liberal, anyone fighting Commies must be worth cheering for, right?) in to a somewhat sympathetic character. Then, Millar shreds all of that. See? We can all rant!
  5. Marvel's One World Order

    No, I stopped reading during the Ennis run. I was needing to make some cuts in my new comic buying for cash reasons at the time, and then I never really went back to finish the Ennis run even. Oh, and Beast has also been tarnished by this, because he said that at least Hydra's America allowed mutants to have their own homeland. Even though mutants had their own homeland with Utopia under Cyclops' leadership, and a number of X-Men questioned whether Cyclops mutant segregation policies were the best way to accomplish Xavier's dream....Yet, Hydra didn't give mutants a choice and forced them to move to New Tian. Beast didn't seem to have a problem with any of this, even though it makes zero sense. Why would a bunch of X-Men have problems with the idea of Utopia, where mutants could make the choice to live if they freely chose, and yet, Beast saw no problem with a Hydra government enforced mutant homeland?
  6. Librarians, Liberals and Lesbians* (Books)

    See my response to most of Lethem's choices, as far as Sarah Canary.... Sheckley is about the only name who could really be considered "just a genre writer" in the contents list....as someone like PKD, as I said about Aldiss, is now accepted by the literati as an Existential writer and not "just a genre writer". Although, Sheckley is more of a hipster choice. He's someone who is on that edge, who people are starting to look back on his writing more fondly, and not just another Asimov or Heinlen. So, Lethem could be trying to push for more "mainstream" acceptance of Sheckley by even including him.
  7. Marvel's One World Order

    I don't know....It is sort of the Punisher I know. I know that Ennis decided to take Castle in a different direction*, but really, the character's whole raison d'etre is the police aren't doing their jobs effectively enough, the justice system is hand-tied by rules that prohibit it from effectively enforcing "law and order" policies, so he's out there fighting the Vietnam War against domestic criminals. That's pretty much fascist ideology. That the liberal State has hand-tied people from effectively enforcing the laws of the land. The fascist State isn't hamstrung by the "rule of law", and fascists can have the State do what Punisher is being forced to do as a "one man army". The fact that most of Marvel's superheroes have had to stop a crazed vigilante gunman who feels "he is the law", because "heroes don't kill" pretty effectively should be seen as a commentary on the Punisher. *Even Ennis' Punisher wasn't supposed to be seen as heroic, if you consider the plot of the "Born" mini-series, where Frank Castle doesn't ever want the bloodshed to end. Although, I agree that coming out saying that the Punisher is just a fascist is a character killing moment.
  8. Librarians, Liberals and Lesbians* (Books)

    Nah, those are too genre-oriented for Lethem, I think. He includes a reading list of other literature that features the amnesia theme, and he doesn't even give any of those stories a mention. There are a large amount of excerpts in the anthology, a lot of them only even tangentially related to the theme. Most of the novels I'm not even familiar with, honestly. Dream Science by Thomas Palmer Other People by Martin Amis Memories of Amnesia by Lawrence Shainberg Cowboys Don't Cry by LJ Davis Public Eye by Brian Fawcett The Second Coming by Walker Percy The Black Curtain by Cornell Woolrich The Third Policeman by Flann O'Brien-I'd imagine it would be hard to find an excerpt from this novel that would make sense as a story in its own right.... Forgetting Elena by Edmund White Sarah Canary by Karen Joy Fowler Notes Towards a History of the Seventies by Geoffrey O'Brien Ticket to Ride by Dennis Potter Louse by David Grand Kleinzeit by Russell Hoban The Affirmation by Christopher Priest- I've read this novel. Days Between Stations by Steve Erickson The Deadly Percheron by John Franklin Bardin
  9. Test & forum update noise

    I apparently have three secret admirers. So, I'm pretty excited about that, I guess.
  10. Marvel's One World Order

    Black Widow is apparently still going to be dead. Marvel announced a Tales of Suspense mini-series which will be a non-team-up story featuring Hawkeye and Winter Solider who both believe that Black Widow is still alive and will be trying to find her. Yeah, the whole "a large percentage of America supported Hydra Cap" thing is what really makes me feel distaste about Marvel not hitting the reset button. The Inhumans in society were put in freakin' concentration camps! How do you deal with that in a shared comic book universe? "Gee, sorry about all that. I mean, I still wish you were in a concentration camp, but now that you're not, well, welcome back to your home. No hard feelings....unless I decide to lynch you in the middle of the night or something, in which case, yeah....." Hawkeye even made comments a few times during Secret Empire about how the superheroes shouldn't care about the public anymore, due to the fact that the public so readily decided to side with something like Hydra. Like people are really going to believe that Captain America was an alternate version created by a Cosmic Cube changing history. For all intents and purposes, the legacy of Captain America is tarnished beyond repair, I don't care what hand-waving Marvel wants to use. It destroyed the character of Tony Stark by turning him in to neocon during the original Civil War. I refused to read any comics starring Iron Man for years after Civil War, because Iron Man was no longer a hero, he should have been treated as a super-villain. It destroyed the character of Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) by showing her as an authoritarian during the Civil War II. Yeah, let's lock up people before they commit any crimes, there's nothing wrong with that idea, is there? I refuse to read any comics starring Carol Danvers now. The situation with Steve Rogers is far worse. I won't be reading any comics starring Steve Rogers probably ever after this point. And, it's ruined the Punisher as a character. Yes, you could say he's already done that for himself, but to openly admit that he's a fascist, and not just pretend that he's somehow different than all those other lone-gunman vigilantes that Marvel superheroes actively fight.....Yeah, he claims he was "misled" by Steve Rogers because he thought he was the "real Captain America". Like Frank Castle really gave a fuck! He knew what was going on, he just had a State backing his "law and order" bullshit. He hasn't changed. Sure, they showed him shooting some Hydra agents now....well, isn't that just because the regime has changed and now Hydra are classified as "terrorists" again? It's just bad in so many ways.
  11. Trinity

    I'm not reading it, as I have very little interest in DC anymore. The main DC Trinity has been a thing for a long while now....Matt Wagner had a mini-series a while ago that introduced that concept. Then, back when DC decided to have an on-going weekly series constantly, Kurt Busiek wrote a book called Trinity, about what the DC Universe would be like if that original DC Trinity went missing....and, unlike most anything else written by Busiek, I remember it being terrible. Rob Williams is often a decent writer. I haven't read everything by him. Some of it is quite good, while other of his writing is pedestrian. He can be political in some of his stories. His first comic series was the heavily delayed ClassWar for the failed publisher ComX. It was a pretty good read, although it was somewhat derivative of John Smith's New Statesmen. He's also the current writer on the new Suicide Squad series.
  12. Librarians, Liberals and Lesbians* (Books)

    I'm reading through the anthology The Vintage Book of Amnesia, edited by Jonathan Lethem. It has some major issues, although it collects some good stories. First of all, I do already own a number of short stories included, but that's just my own griping, rather than an objective critique of the book. The far larger problems are: A.)Lethem collects far too many excerpts from novels. It was like he had a distinct lack of short stories to include, so he started to just fill up the pages with excerpts from novels. This may show a sign of some problem with the theme of said anthology. Sometimes you can excerpt a short section of a novel and have it read as a self-contained story, and that's fine, but usually the reader is left feeling cheated when you include so many excerpts from much longer works. B.)Many of the stories he chose for inclusion in the anthology don't even fit the criteria of the stated premise of said anthology. Jorge Luis Borges' story "Funes, His Memory" is included. I've read that story before. It's actually about a person who is able to remember everything. It's "reverse-amnesia". Sure, including some stories which don't really fit the criteria can shake up an anthology, if too many stories are dealing with the same plot, but there really aren't all that many stories which are strictly about the subject of amnesia. Philip K. Dick's "I Hope I Shall Arrive Soon" is also included, another story I've read before. A wonderful story to be sure, but it can hardly be classified as being about amnesia. The main character doesn't really forget anything. Having complained a great deal about this anthology (which I'd say it is deserving), there are some stories that are hard to fine other places, which made me decide to pick up this used copy. Robert Sheckley's short story, "Warm", is included. Once again, the main character doesn't actually forget anything. However, it's a delightful little story which taking Bishop George Berkeley's philosophy to their ultimate end. It's a Sheckley story that can be hard to find, but deserves to be more widely read, I feel. Then again, I'm intrigued by Berkeley's philosophy, myself.
  13. Brian Aldiss is gone....?

    He's actually had a few short stories published posthumously, it appears. I checked the ISFDB. The one you are referring to is "The Drummer and the Skins", and it says it was collected in an anthology titled The Horns of Elfland published in 1997.
  14. Brian Aldiss is gone....?

    Oh, Brunner did die in 1995. I thought he had died in the early-1980s, for some reason. Yeah, his Children of the Thunder novel, which I really liked, was from 1988, so I should have realized.
  15. Just Got into Hellblazer...

    "Ashes and Honey" was actually by Darko Macan, not Ellis. It was a two-part fill-in story between writers. I am a fan of the "Ashes and Honey" arc though, it was very good.
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