Pixel Scroll 1/10/21 I’m The Pixel Of Hugos Past And I’m Here To Warn Mike Not To Use That Scroll Title

DAVID WEBER OUT OF HOSPITAL. A good news post yesterday at the David Weber the Author page on Facebook:

Latest update from Mr. Weber:

It’s official. The paperwork needs to be processed, and that’s gonna take a while, but they’re gonna let me go home still tonight! Passed the walking test with no O2 and without ever dropping below 96%.

Yaaaay me!

A few hours later Sharon Rice-Weber announced “He’s home!” with a photo.

(2) DOWN BY THE OLD TV STREAM. “Epic fantasy to anarchic animation: the TV trends to look out for in 2021”The Guardian’s list starts with epically expensive fantasy:

Pretenders to the Thrones

For the second year in a row there is a Game of Thrones-shaped chasm in the calendar: prequel House of the Dragon won’t launch until 2022. That presents an opening for deep-pocketed rivals. Netflix’s own medieval-tinged gorefest The Witcher is back for a second season, joined on the platform by sorcery saga Shadow and Bone (April). And Amazon Prime Video is set to launch two formidable fantasy franchises: The Wheel of Time adapts Robert Jordan’s hefty series of novels, with Rosamund Pike starring, while we might finally see its long-awaited The Lord of the Rings adaptation, set to be the most expensive TV show of all time at a cool $1bn.

(3) ARNOLD ON THE INSURRECTION. “Schwarzenegger compares attack on Capitol to Nazi violence” — the LA Times summarizes a video released by the actor and former California governor.

Arnold Schwarzenegger likened this week’s siege of the U.S. Capitol to Nazi attacks on Jews in Europe ahead of World War II in a scathing video in which the former California governor also called President Trump “the worst president ever.”

Schwarzenegger wasn’t yet alive when Nazis rampaged through Germany and Austria during Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass, in 1938, attacking Jewish homes and businesses and taking thousands to concentration camps. He was born in Austria two years after World War II ended. But the trauma inflicted by the violent collapse of democracy — and the complicity of some of those close to him — shaped his childhood, he said in the video released via Twitter early Sunday.

“Growing up, I was surrounded by broken men drinking away their guilt over their participation in the most evil regime in history,” he said. “Not all of them were rabid anti-Semites or Nazis. Many just went along step by step down the road.”

Schwarzenegger said that his father would often come home drunk and hit him and other family members, which didn’t seem remarkable because their neighbor was doing the same thing.

“They were in physical pain from the shrapnel in their bodies and in emotional pain from what they saw or did,” Schwarzenegger said. “It all started with lies, and lies, and lies, and intolerance.”

Similarly, he said, Trump misled his supporters with lies as he sought a coup to overturn the results of the presidential election…

(4) WRIGHT. For more of the sort of thing Schwarzenegger is opposing, see John C. Wright’s Journal, “A Word of Encouragement” [Internet Archive link] from January 8, a lengthy appeal to religious faith for the belief that Trump will continue as President:   

…If I am wrong, I am a fool, and I have fooled others. But I will not be any more or less unhappy in that hour than wiser souls now weeping and gnashing their teeth. But if I am right, our enemies will be repenting and lamenting in jail, or slain at each other’s hands….

Over 200 comments follow.

(5) BALTICON. There is an unofficial discussion being carried on by commenters at the Balticon Discussions, A Safe Space (Unaffiliated, Privately Run) group (publicly visible) about the statement issued by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society and reported in a post here (“BSFS Reports Results of a Code of Conduct Investigation”).

(6) LUTZ OBIT. John Lutz (1939-2021) died January 9 after a long illness. Mystery writer, past President of Mystery Writers of America and Private Eye Writers of America. Edgar winner for the short story “Ride The Lightning” (1985), and twice winner of the Shamus Award. His “SWF Seeks Same” was adapted for the film Single White Female (Bridget Fonda, Jennifer Jason Leigh). 

(7) MEDIA BIRTHDAY.

  • January 10, 1967 The Invaders premiered in television history. It was created by Larry Cohen and aired on ABC for two seasons. Roy Thinnes starred as David Vincent. Gold Key Comics published four issues of an Invaders comic book.  The series was a Quinn Martin production who was also responsible for A Twist in the Tale, an anthology series that did some SFF.
  • January 10, 1999 Batman Beyond premiered on Kids’ WB. It was created by Bruce Timm. Will Friedle as Terry McGinnis, the new  Batman and you know who played the old Batman. It lasted three seasons and fifty two episodes. The actual origin episode for Terry is to be found on Justice League Beyond in the “Epilogue” episode. The episode was originally intended to be the series finale for Justice League and the DCAU in general but they got renewed for a third season after it aired as the second season finale.   

(8) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge and John Hertz.]

  • Born January 10, 1797 – Annette von Droste-Hülshoff.  Knew Wilhelm Grimm, contributed to the G brothers’ collection of fairy tales.  Schumann set a D poem to music.  Her poetical works “imperishable…. originality…. the works of a genius….  Germany’s greatest poetess” (Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)).  Many have supernatural elements.  (Died 1848) [JH]
  • Born January 10, 1883 – Alexei Nikolayevich Tolstoy.  Three novels for us available in English, two science fiction and one a version of Pinocchio; other fiction, poetry.  Everyone acknowledged his gifts, but since he first scorned, then embraced the Bolsheviks, he was thereafter scorned (by e.g. Nikolai Tolstoy, George Orwell) or embraced (two Stalin Prizes) politically; anyway a Russian-language SF pioneer.  (Died 1945; I give his patronymic to distinguish him from Alexei Constantinovich Tolstoy 1817-1875) [JH]
  • Born January 10, 1904 Ray Bolger. Best remembered obviously as The Scarecrow In The Wizard of Oz. He also showedas the villainous Barnaby in Babes in Toyland, two appearances on Fantasy Island, and Vector In “Greetings from Earth” on the classic version of Battlestar Galactica.  He narrated a version of Peter and The Wolf which certainly is genre. (Died 1987.) (CE)
  • Born January 10, 1908 Bernard Lee. He’s best known for his role as M in the first eleven Eon Productions-produced James Bond films ending with Moonraker. He also portrayed Tarmut the sculptor in Terence Fisher’s Hammer Horror picture Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell. And he appeared in several episodes of Danger Man. (Died 1981.) (CE) 
  • Born January 10, 1924 Mike Butterworth. In 1965 he became the primary script writers at Ranger magazine where he was responsible for scripting the space opera The Rise and Fall of the Trigan Empire which remains to this day one of the most popular boys’ adventure strips ever published in the UK. Between Ranger and later Look and Learn, it would have a very impressive run of 854 issues in total, divided between the two magazines. (Died 1986.) (CE)
  • Born January 10, 1924 – Aila Mariluoto.  Poet, mostly.  Well known in Finland.  Translated Goethe, Rilke, Shakespeare.  The Worldcon 75 Souvenir Book duly reviewed (in English) her SF novel Green Hair; thanks, Jukka.  (Died 2019) [JH]
  • Born January 10, 1937 Elizabeth Anne Hull, 84. Widow of Frederik Pohl with whom she co-edited the most excellent Tales from the Planet Earth anthology. Not surprisingly, she later edited Gateways: Original New Stories Inspired by Frederik Pohl. She has been a member of the panel for the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best SF novel since 1986. (CE)
  • Born January 10, 1947 George Alec Effinger. I’ve read his Marîd Audran series at least three times  as it’s an amazing series in both the characters and the setting. I never read the short stories set in this setting until Golden Gryphon Press sent me Budayeen Nights for Green Man to review.  I really should listen to the stories soon to see how they work that way. (Died 2002.) (CE) 
  • Born January 10, 1948 – Roberta Lamming, age 73.  A dozen short stories for us, some under another name.  Poem in L. Tuttle’s horror anthology Skin of the Soul.  Note on writers’ workshops in Focus.  [JH]
  • Born January 10, 1959 Fran Walsh, 61. Partner of Peter Jackson, she has contributed to all of his films since the late Eighties when she started out as co-writer of Meet the Feebles, and as producer since The Fellowship of the Ring which won a Hugo. Need I note the next two films won Hugos as well? Huh The Hobbit films did not win Hugos.  (CE) 
  • Born January 10, 1975 – André Vianco, age 46.  Novelist, screenwriter, film and television director, a million books sold.  A dozen novels for us.  Wikipedia tells his tale.  [JH]
  • Born January 10, 1984 – Tomohito Moriyama, age 37.  (Personal name last, Japanese style.)  Playwright, mostly.  One translation of his SF story “Two of Six” is published with English text followed by parallel text in Japanese and English for people who want to practice their Japanese.  A review of the story is here.  [JH]

(9) COMICS SECTION.

(10) THE DOCTOR IS IN. BBC News tells how this kid’s parents thrilled him on Christmas: “Doctor Who: Saxmundham superfan, 8, given Tardis door frame” (H/t David Gerrold.)

…The Tardis was created in the family garage over about four months by school bus driver Mr Tucker, while the family shielded during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mrs Tucker said: “Luke is Doctor Who mad and he said he would love a police public call box.

“We spent the first lockdown doing gardening but, as restrictions continued, this has really helped get Phil through the time at home while he has been furloughed….

“We all enjoy the show and Luke has really taken to it – he likes all of the classic episodes, too. He has a fez, bow tie and scarf – and about six sonic screwdrivers.”

(11) DOC OF THE EBAY. This is supposed to be the NECA Back to The Future Doc Brown Action Figure [Ultimate Version, Wrench, Flux Capacitor Drawing & Blueprint], but it looks more like Michael Sheen to me.

(12) WELL VERSED. A work of art from Bill left in comments.

I met a Filer from an antique Scroll
Who said — “Two vast and towering stacks of books
Stand in the bedroom … Near them, novels by Pohl,
And others of a Golden Age, whose frowns,
And uncracked spines, and sneers of cold control
Beckon toward the fan. They lay there waiting, and unread.
Worlds, though built, not yet explored by glance or looks
At pages filled with men of space, who from Earth have fled.
And on the nightstand, these words appear:
My name is Tsundoko, Stack of Books;
Look on my pages, Pixels, and Despair!”

[Thanks to John Hertz, Cat Eldridge, JJ, Andrew Porter, Mike Kennedy, Michael Toman, Martin Morse Wooster, Jeffrey Jones, Daniel Dern, Todd Mason, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Peer.]

34 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 1/10/21 I’m The Pixel Of Hugos Past And I’m Here To Warn Mike Not To Use That Scroll Title

  1. Estee says Small correction: Moriyama Tomohito. Tomohito is the personal name.

    No, you’re wrong as that’s how she uses it on her Facebook page and elsewhere.

  2. I prefer my parody of Shelley:

    I met a traveler: ’twas an antique fan,
    Who said: “Two vast and drumless mimeos
    Stand in the slanshack. Near them, on a stand,
    Half torn, a tattered fanzine lies, whose brown
    And wrinkled page’s words of cold disdain
    Tell that the faned well that passion knew
    Which yet survives, stamped on the lifeless page,
    The hand that crankèd, and the paper fed.

    And on the colophon these words appear:
    ‘My Name is Ozyfandias, Faan of Faans.
    Look on My Work, Ye Neos, and Despair!’
    Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
    Of that colossal shack, boundless and bare,
    The lone and level sands stretch far away!”

  3. Thanks for reprinting the poem.

    (11) Note that the “blueprint” is a copy of the Library of Congress’s Historic American Buildings Survey blueprint of the Gamble House (as in Procter and . . .) in Pasadena, which was used to shoot exterior shots of Doc Brown’s house.

  4. (3) I follow Scott Manley for his space related content and had a huge laugh from this tweet:

    https://twitter.com/DJSnM/status/1348350765211947008

    (He links to the Schwarzenegger video and says “Conan was always way better than Hercules.” )

    I never paid much attention to Kevin Sorbo after his TV shows aside from when he played an atheist, or at least a fundamentalist’s ludicrous concept of one in a religious movie, but recently saw a ridiculous tweet from him on the Washington mess, then checked his other tweets, and found he is very much part of Trump’s credulous cult. Bleh.

    The only negative thing I’ll say about Schwarzenegger’s video is that it feels overdone to me. I especially didn’t like the background music.

    (4) I read much of Wright’s post. What I gather is that in his alternate reality, Trump is the greatest man ever (except maybe for Jesus), therefore it follows that the news media must be completely corrupted and they must all be lying when they say his claims of massive fraud are evidence free, his conspiracy theories are baseless. Further the politicians and judges, including the Republicans that have argued or ruled against Trump are all evil. They must be putting their own careers ahead of what Wright imagines is right. (Of course, it couldn’t be because Trump is very wrong – he is just wonderful. And it couldn’t be Trump and his cronies, like Giuliani and Cruz that are putting their own interest ahead of the country’s). These people against Trump are all traitors, he says, and the penalty is death.

    They will, he believes, get theirs in the end, but he reminds us that God still wants to save all these evil men (he doesn’t mention women). But he still believes Trump will get a second term, because God will fix things somehow. Wright also says that he is “a cautious and logical thinker, not easily fooled.” (I would have laughed at that if the rest of the post hadn’t been so disturbing). He also went into some long religious aside, but I didn’t see where it added much of anything to his rant.

    In a way, it is amazing how much his view mirrors mine: Trump and his cronies are horrible people for what they have done to the country. It’s astonishing to me how many people Trump has fooled, despite the evidence against him. Ideally, I’d like to see them pay in some way, like prison sentences, but I doubt that will happen.

    It is disturbing how Wright wants to throw out all news, and condemn all people that would argue against his beliefs.

    Personal note: I consider my politics to be fairly American centrist. Sometimes I vote for a Democrat and sometimes a Republican. It depends on the situation and the politician, and I will not vote for the extremes of either party. Of course I didn’t vote for Trump after hearing his extremism. I could have a civil discussion about politics with most Republicans before 2016, but I no longer can count on that. I thought I more or less understood mainstream Republican viewpoints even when I disagreed with them, but I have been unable to have a civil conversation with most Trump supporters. I no longer even want to try. They seem irrational, and don’t even seem to be living on the same planet.

    If any Trump supporter thinks they are “a cautious and logical thinker, not easily fooled” and wants to convince an actual skeptic like me and millions of other people, present real evidence for the massive fraud claimed. I couldn’t care less about claims from Trump, his people or conspiracy websites until and unless there is solid documentation. Trump’s lawyers never presented any. If you claim some grand conspiracy has hidden it all, that’s as good as admitting you have none, and you will sound as ridiculous as a flat earther.

  5. Glad to see in the unnumbered number (1) that David Weber is well enough to come home.

    (7) I liked Batman:Beyond.

  6. By the way, has anyone else seen “Palm Springs”? My wife and I watched it (on Hulu) a few days ago and really enjoyed it. It’s a potential Long-form nominee for us.

  7. 4) I read some of Wright’s post, as much as I could endure of that mangled, amateurish faux-archaic prose. My question is: does he really belief this nonsense?

    I’ve also been reading LC’s blog and the tough-guy below-the-line comments. I savoured the delicious irony of Larry accusing someone of Dunning-Kruger after he himself had earlier promoted the Benford Law conspiracy (now recanted), backing it up with this accountancy credentials: a man who clearly doesn’t understand the distribution, its causes or its areas of applicability, yet accuses others of merely quoting from other sources. Yet I think Larry’s belief of election fraud may be in earnest.

  8. Stobor: Yes, when I got to the “cautious and logical thinker, not easily fooled” line, I had a long pause before continuing. Since my youngest brother is under Trump’s spell, I have seen a lot of their alternative “facts.” I can’t argue with him, because the rest of the government, the courts, the press, are all denying the truths that are so obviously real to these logical thinkers. Me saying that these charges have been investigated and found false means nothing, because all my proofs are corrupt.

    Andrew (not Werdna): We watched Palm Springs, because we both like time loop stories. We had no high expectations for it, but both liked it a lot. It was no Russian Doll, but there were some well worked out bits.

  9. Stobor says I never paid much attention to Kevin Sorbo after his TV shows aside from when he played an atheist, or at least a fundamentalist’s ludicrous concept of one in a religious movie, but recently saw a ridiculous tweet from him on the Washington mess, then checked his other tweets, and found he is very much part of Trump’s credulous cult. Bleh.

    He’s been a throughly disgusting person of a right wing nature since the days of the Hercules series, so that he’s a rabid Trump supporter doesn’t surprise me. And yes his Tweets are particularly annoyingly, aren’t they?

  10. The Washington Post just now posted an excellent article on the difficulties that Trump faces in building a social network of his own to replace the overwhelming presence he had via Twitter. Basically as a private citizen, he can expect to run into the same limitations that shut Parler down most likely for good.

  11. (7) Batman Beyond is better Cyberpunk than a lot of things that are actually labeled Cyberpunk. Loved that show – and it’s held up pretty well, too (I re-watched it a few years ago via Amazon’s video service).

  12. 4) I also read John C. Wright’s post. I’ve known for a while that Wright had lost himself down the rabbit hole but for him to actively wish death and violence against all who disagree with him, to have him discard every bit of belief and truth which once made his science fiction so powerful to read … I wish I could say that words fail me, but what I really think is that words and faith and reason have failed Wright.

    I used to love Wright’s stories but now don’t see how I can ever approach them again.

  13. In re Sorbo: It has been delicious, though, to see Lucy Lawless burst his bubble time and again on twitter.

    IOW Xena > Hercules.

    I once went to a local St. Paul Saints (minor league Baseball team). Sorbo threw out the first pitch. So. yeah…

  14. Eric R Franklin says Batman Beyond is better Cyberpunk than a lot of things that are actually labeled Cyberpunk. Loved that show – and it’s held up pretty well, too (I re-watched it a few years ago via Amazon’s video service).

    It’s now over at HBO Max as DC Universe has shed most, though not all oddly enough, of its video offerings. (For seven bucks a month, it’s well worth it for the comics there!) It’s a great show and do make an effort to catch to the Justice League episode I noted as it’s a great prequel to the series.

  15. I don’t know…what with anti-mask rabidity, Qanon’s lizard people pedophiles, Venezuelan election-hackers and T**** as messiah, I frankly have given up. Clearly, tens of millions of people are tired of modern life and want to burn it to the ground. I assume they all believe they are fit to thrive in a Mad Max world and are destined for a sweet afterworld.

    Hubris meets mimesis in catharsis.

  16. Re: Moriyama Tomohito, really and truly, Moriyama is the surname (a fairly common one) and Tomohito is the personal name (and it’s a male name). People often use English-language order for names given in romanization, but the name is also given in Japanese in the linked article (I tried to copy it here but couldn’t). If you google images using the Japanese characters, you get book covers and photos of a guy in a hat who I assume is Mr. Moriyama.

  17. Pingback: Pixel Scroll 1/11/21 The Muppet Pastors | File 770

  18. Count me as another who was surprised and impressed by Batman Beyond. Bruce Timm’s art style fits the tone of the story so well, and the story is quite well done.

    As for Effinger, the Audran stories are among my favorites of the era. And yes, they seem to hold up reasonably well, all things considered.

  19. Xtifr says Count me as another who was surprised and impressed by Batman Beyond. Bruce Timm’s art style fits the tone of the story so well, and the story is quite well done.

    If you loved the animated series, I think you’d be impressed by the comic series that have followed down the years as they’ve done an amazing job of fleshing out the story.

    Now listening to: Iain M. Bank’s Considering Phlebas

  20. I still haven’t read Effingers Budayeen books, shame on me. I read a couple of shorter bits when they appeared in Asimov’s and enjoyed them.

    Effinger had a couple of whacky time travel adventures that I recommend. “Nick of time” was one, ISFDB will have the deets. If you’re in the mood for tomfoolery and are out of Sladek books, those two are pretty good fun.

    Cat, I wish I hadn’t read the second half of Phlebas

  21. The second half of Phlebas is cruel.

    If you’ve already read it, and disagree, then it doesn’t matter, different taste.

    If you’re reading it for the first time, I don’t want to overstep. It’s a rube goldberg joke but the punchline is not in the same spirit as the somewhat-rollicking first half.

    YMMV, but I wish I had stopped reading when the boat sinks.

  22. @ Brown Robin. I’ve thought before that for books set in a utopian future, the Culture has a lot of really dark scenes.

  23. I guess Banks wanted to make utopia not boring. He succeeded.

    I enjoyed Look to Windward beginning to end. Consistent tone, maybe? Phlebas feels like two books jammed together, or two episodes of a tv series: same characters, same narrative arc, different writing teams.

    I admit Banks is hit or miss for me. Hydrogen sonata washed over me without leaving any impression at all, and I abandoned Matter a few pages in. OTOH I enjoyed Phlebas episode one, and Look to Windward is one of my favorite recent reads. Phlebas episode two made me feel like a sucker, falling for the old rope-a-dope.

  24. Banks’ Culture novels have a bleakness about them, at least partly because they are normally set outside the Culture proper. It’s really hard to write stories in a Utopia, so Banks gets around this problem by setting his stories at the interstices between the Culture & other spacefaring civilisations (where special Circumstances, the Culture dirty tricks component operates), or well outside the Culture itself. Also: Banks seems to enjoy writing some horrific scenes.

  25. Estee is correct. Note that his facebook page links to his blog in Japanese. The first element of the URL is morayamatomohito.

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