That’s the one that references Fletcher Pratt’s history of the Civil War, I think (and notes the aspect of the war that Pratt didn’t mention in the history…).
I liked the first four SSR books (by publication date, so up to the alien invasion one) but after that lost interest suddenly. The best part of all of them was the “Grey Men” villains who were legitimately scary.
I think the second one is the dissociated one. DinAlt lands on a backwards planet where everyone guards their small bit of technology. Doesn’t seem to fit in at all with the other two books, nor The Mothballed Spaceship. HH gets to show off his “how things work” knowledge, in the service of a pretty lame main plot. The bad guy isn’t even consistent in his biases. He’s against whatever dinAlt proposes. IIRC, at one point he’s against fomenting a slave rebellion because…dinAlt wants to, is all I can figure out. His reason made no sense. He’s like a Republican and dinAlt is Obama. :)
The third one is the mongols and Genghis Khan one. I thought that was pretty good. Sure it is basically borrowing reality for a plot (the Genghis Khan stand in is even named Temujin, which got past my 15 year old knowledge base but is weak sauce for an adult audience).
But the first SSR and Deathworld could be great movies. I could even see an SSR series, if they made them like Bond movies - borrow the title and forget the story.
Completely agree. There’s a lot to be done with the setting and basic character definition. Cherry-pick the three or four good plots from the run and you’ve got a decade of films to start with.
Well, really all three are very different, just showing ultimate survival in three completely different scenarios. It’s easier to think of them as three separate stories rather than a trilogy.
But long, long before. Mikah Samon is a great character - he’s a *stupid *Spock, all rigid logic dressed up in mildly religious trappings, but without an ounce of sense behind it. His adherence to formal logic takes him (and dinAlt) right off a cliff, over and over, and he doesn’t get it right down to his (heh, heh) last argument. I can see the character played absolutely straight in a movie - not as a clown or an overt idiot, but an ideologue so fixated that he’ll walk into machine gun fire convinced the lead doesn’t believe in war, either.
The one really, really gaping hole in the SSR story logic is this, and it’s bugged me more than any of the holes and flaws mentioned above:
Angelina was born ugly and deformed. She became a criminal (possibly murdering her own parents as a start) to get money for massive reconstructive surgery to make her a dainty galaxy-wide beauty. She gets knocked up. She has twins… who “share her mother’s good looks, fortunately.”
We can fanwank that - maybe she was born ugly because of drugs or toxins that afflicted her mom’s pregnancy, not genetics - perhaps her operations were to transform her into what she would have looked like, ‘but for’ that. A sort of Thalidomide psychopath.
Anyway, the main reason I would Loooove to see Deathworld 1 as a movie (as opposed to the others - though they would be cool as well) is that the planet itself would be visually awesome - a planet in which every life form is actively hostile.
The others feature - a bizzare crapsack world of technological backwardness, and … dragon-riding mongols. Which would be cool, but not as cool.