Pixel Scroll 10/21/19 Oh, This Is The Scroll, It’s A Beautiful Scroll, And We Call It Pixela Scrollte

(1) DALLAS TORNADO. Fanartist David Thayer and his wife Diana had a close call last night but are unscathed themselves:

A tornado with winds of 165 m.p.h. cut a swath through Dallas just a mile south of our house yesterday evening after dark. A powerful gust snapped the trunk of our 70 ft mesquite halfway up and sent it crashing down into our front yard. The only property damage we sustained was to our yard light. Seeing all the destruction in the news this morning, we are thankful we came through relatively unscathed.

(2) AVENGERS ASSEMBLE. Just in case the Marvel Cinematic Universe needs any defense against the negative opinions of Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, a couple of well-known figures connected with the MCU have spoken up.

James Gunn:

Many of our grandfathers thought all gangster movies were the same, often calling them “despicable”. Some of our great grandfathers thought the same of westerns, and believed the films of John Ford, Sam Peckinpah, and Sergio Leone were all exactly the same. I remember a great uncle to whom I was raving about Star Wars. He responded by saying, “I saw that when it was called 2001, and, boy, was it boring!” Superheroes are simply today’s gangsters/cowboys/outer space adventurers. Some superhero films are awful, some are beautiful….

Natalie Portman:

I think there’s room for all types of cinema,” she told The Hollywood Reporter at the 6th annual Los Angeles Dance Project Gala on Saturday at downtown Los Angeles’ Hauser & Wirth. “There’s not one way to make art.”

“I think that Marvel films are so popular because they’re really entertaining and people desire entertainment when they have their special time after work, after dealing with their hardships in real life.”

(3) HOW EAGER ARE YOU? ESPN will be airing the final trailer for Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker tonight during Monday Night Football.

(4) NAVIGATING THE ROCKETS SAFELY HOME. In “What happened to the 1944 Retro Hugos?”, Nicholas Whyte asks fans to consider the burden of producing a whole run of trophies when it’s this hard to find homes for them after the ceremony. Of course, the job would have been a little easier if the nominees with accepters had won:

…I’m glad to say that we did have a few designated acceptors in the room on the night. Apart from those noted below, Betsy Wollheim was on hand in case her father Donald won (unfortunately he lost in all three categories where he was nominated); June and Naomi Rosenblum were there for their father-in-law/grandfather J. Michael Rosenblum; Stephanie Breijo was there for her great-grandfather Oscar J. Friend; and Harper Collins sent a rep for C.S. Lewis. So, for 66 finalists, we had acceptors on hand for 10. Future Worldcons might like to bear that in mind when planning whether or not to run Retro Hugo Awards.

This is what happened with the trophies, in increasing order of the difficulty we had in dealing with them….

(5) HOUSE CALL. Can it be that we are about to have a visit from the Doctor and his companion? (No, not that one.)

(6) TARDIGRADES LITIGATION RESUMES. Plagiarism Today’s Jonathan Bailey urges against a court appeal in “An Open Letter to Anas Abdin”

Three weeks ago, it seemed as if the Tardigrades lawsuit was over. Anas Abdin’s lawsuit was tossed decisively and at an early stage, Abdin himself said, “I respect the ruling and I expect everyone to do so,” and there seemed to be little interest in any kind of an appeal.

However, that respect for the decision did not last long. On Friday, Abdin announced that he was appealing the verdict and was launching a GoFundMe to finance the campaign. As of this writing, that campaign has raised more than $17,500 from more than 470 donors and is inching closer to its $20,000 goal….

(7) CONFACTS. Kees Van Toorn announced that all issues of ConFacts, the daily newsletter of ConFiction, the 1990 Worldcon, have been uploaded on their archival website in flipbook format.

(8) KGB. Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series hosts Ellen Datlow and Matthew Kressel present David Mack and Max Gladstone on November 20,  2019.

David Mack is a New York Times bestselling author of over thirty novels of science fiction, fantasy, and adventure. His most recent works are The Midnight Front and The Iron Codex, parts one and two of his Dark Arts trilogy from Tor Books. He currently works as a creative consultant on two upcoming Star Trek television series.

Max Gladstone is the author of Empress of Forever, the Hugo finalist Craft Sequence, and, with Amal El-Mohtar, This is How You Lose the Time War, in addition to his work with short and serial fiction, games, screenwriting, and comics. He has been a finalist for the Hugo, John W Campbell /Astounding, XYZZY, and Lambda Awards, and was once thrown from a horse in Mongolia.

The event starts at 7 p.m. in the KGB Bar, 85 East 4th Street (just off 2nd Ave, upstairs.) in New York, NY.

(9) FANFICTION. Sff writer Sara L. Uckelman, Assistant Professor of logic and philosophy of language at Durham University, issued an invitation: “Anyone interested in the paper behind the talk, my paper ‘Fanfiction, Canon, and Possible Worlds’ can be downloaded here.”

…The study of fanfiction from a philosophical point of view raises a number of questions: What is fanfiction?  What distinguishes it from ordinary fiction? How can we make sense of what is going on when people create and interact with fanfiction?  In this paper, I consider two competing accounts of fanfiction—the derivative or dependent account and the constitutive account—and argue that these competing views parallel two competing ways in which a possible worlds account of fiction can be fleshed out, namely, Lewis’s modal realist account and Kripke’s stipulative view. I further argue that this parallel is not a mere parallel, but provides us with a test of adequacy for the possible worlds accounts: It is worthless to provide a philosophical account of the theoretical foundations of fiction if such an account doesn’t coordinate with the actual practice and production of fiction. 

(10) TODAY IN HISTORY.

  • October 21, 1977Damnation Alley premiered. Based somewhat on Zelazny’s novel, it starred George Peppard as Major Eugene “Sam” Denton and Jan-Michael Vincent as 1st Lt. Jake Tanner. It bombed and was pulled quickly. Its Rotten Tomatoes score is 34%.  For now at least, it’s on YouTube here.

(11) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born October 21, 1904 Edmond Hamilton. One of the prolific writers for Weird Tales from the late 20s to the late 40s, writing nearly eighty stories. (Lovecraft and Howard were the other key writers.) Sources say that through the late 1920s and early 1930s Hamilton wrote for all of the SF pulp magazines then publishing. His story “The Island of Unreason” (Wonder Stories, May 1933) won the first Jules Verne Prize as the best SF story of the year. This was the very first SF prize awarded by a vote of fans, which one source holds to be a precursor of the Hugo Awards. From the early 40s to the late 60s, he work for DC, in stories about Superman and Batman. He created the Space Ranger character with Gardner Fox and Bob Brown. On December 31, 1946, Hamilton married fellow science fiction author and screenwriter Leigh Brackett. Now there is another story as well. (Died 1977.)
  • Born October 21, 1914 Martin Gardner. He was one of leading authorities on Lewis Carroll. The Annotated Alice, which incorporated the text of Carroll’s two Alice books, is still a bestseller. He was considered the doyen (your word to learn today) of American puzzlers. And, to make him even more impressive, in 1999 Magic magazine named Gardner one of the “100 Most Influential Magicians of the Twentieth Century”.  Cool! (Died 2010.)
  • Born October 21, 1929 Ursula Le Guin. She called herself a “Narrative American”. And she most emphatically did not consider herself to be a genre writer instead preferring be known as an “American novelist”. Oh, she wrote genre fiction with quite some brilliance, be it the Earthsea sequence,  The Left Hand of DarknessThe Dispossessed, or Always Coming Home. Her upbringing as the daughter of two academics, one who was an anthropologist and the other who had a graduate degree in psychology, showed in her writing. And the home library of the family had a lot of SF in it. If you’re interested in the awards she won in her career, she garnered  the Hugo Award, Nebula Award, Locus Award, and World Fantasy Award. At last she was also awarded the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters It won’t surprise you that she was made a SFWA Grandmaster, one of the few women writers so honored. (Died 2018.)
  • Born October 21, 1933 Georgia Brown. She’s the actress who portrayed Helena Rozhenko, foster mother of Worf, in the Next Gen’s “Family” and “New Ground” episodes. She was Frau Freud in The Seven-Percent Solution, and was Rachel in “The Musgrave Ritual” episode of the Nigel Stock fronted Sherlock Holmes series. (Died 1992.)
  • Born October 21, 1945 Everett McGill, 74. Stilgar in the first Dune film. Earlier in his career, he was a Noah in Quest for Fire. Later on, he’s Ed Killifer in License to Kill, and in Twin Peaks, he’s Big Ed Hurley. He was also Rev. Lowe in Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, a werewolf flick that actually has a decent rating of 55% at Rotten Tomatoes! 
  • Born October 21, 1956 Carrie Fisher. In addition to the original Star Wars trilogy, Star Wars Holiday SpecialThe Force Awakens, Star Wars: The Last Jedi and the forthcoming Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, she was in Amazon Women on the Moon, The Time Guardian, Hook, Scream 3, and A Midsummer Night’s Rave. (Died 2016.)
  • Born October 21, 1973 Sasha Roiz, 45. I know him only as Captain Sean Renard on Grimm but he’s also been Sam Adama on Caprica as well. And he’s also been on Warehouse 13 in the recurring role of Marcus Diamond. He even showed up once on Lucifer as U.S. Marshal Luke Reynolds.

(12) COMICS SECTION.

  • Frazz makes a nifty dinosaur pun.

(13) UNLIKELY BONANZA. Joseph Hurtgen studies the illustration of an economic system in a Hugo-winning novel: “Gateway – Frederik Pohl: A Critique of Capitalism”.

…Consider the name of the alien space station for which Pohl’s book gets its name: Gateway. In the same way that taking highly random and highly dangerous alien space flights is the gateway to potential wealth, the capitalist system is also the gateway to the extreme fortune of the limited few that have, through luck or pluck, benefited most from the system. But no billionaire earns their riches without exploiting populations. Behind every fortune are the underpaid, the underfed, the forgotten, and the have nothings. The capitalist system, most simply defined, is a system of using the work of others and the work of wealth itself, to gain more wealth. It doesn’t take too much mental work to see that people are a form of capital in the capitalist system. Indeed, within capitalism everything is a form of capital. The best capitalist is the individual that figures out how to make more out of what they have….

(14) MYLNE’S GENRE ART. Artist James Mylne has been in the news lately (see, for instance ITV: “Boris Johnson turns into The Joker in new artwork”) for a political commentary that leans heavily on a genre reference. Filers might, therefore, be interested to know that his work has sometimes borrowed from other genre sources also. Example below.

(15) SOLARIS ON STAGE. Those passing through London between now and November 2 can see the play Solaris (nearest tube/metro/underground is Hammersmith).

On a space station orbiting Solaris, three scientists have made contact with a new planet.

Sent from earth to investigate reports of abnormal activity on-board, Kris Kelvin arrives to find one crew member dead and two who are seeing things that cannot be explained.

When her dead lover appears to her, it seems she too has fallen victim to the mystery of this strange planet. Should she return to reality, or is this her chance to turn back time?

Have the crew been studying Solaris – or has it been studying them?

This psychological thriller asks who we are when we’re forced to confront our deepest fears.

(16) ATWOOD PROFILE. Behind a paywall in the October 12 Financial Times, Horatia Harrod has a lengthy interview with Margaret Atwood.

In Oryx and Crake, Atwood wrote about a world decimated by environmental catastrophe; her understanding of the fragility of the Earth and the rapaciousness of its human inhabitants came early.  “My father was already talking about this over the dinner table in 1955,” says Atwood, who has been committed to raising awareness of the climate crisis for decades (she promised her 2000 Booker Prize winnings to charities dedicated to endangered animals.  “There is so much data and evidence.  But people would rather adhere to a belief system that favours them. So, what view of the climate is going to make more money for me?”

Atwood’s mother, meanwhile, was a tomboy, whose favored pastimes were speedskating, horseback riding, canoeing, fishing, not doing housework.  “I can’t think of much she was afraid of. This is a mother who chased a bear away with a broom, saying the following word:  ‘Scat!’” There were other tough female role models:”Inuit women, who have done some pretty spectacular things.  My aunt Ada, who I named a character in The Testaments after, was a hunting and fishing guide, and a crack shot with a .22.”

(17) PLANETARY ANTHOLOGIES MIGRATE. Superversive Press has dropped the Planetary Anthologies line says Declan Finn, whose contribution, Luna, is awaiting publication. (Indeed, a search on Amazon showed Superversive Press books as a whole are now only available from third-party vendors.) However, Finn says another publisher is stepping up.

The Planetary Anthology series is being discontinued.

In fact, even the five anthologies that have been published already have been discontinued. They will no longer be available for sale online from the publisher.

Which is odd for me. Especially after a year where the Area 51 anthology I was in this year was conceived of, edited, and released in 3 months from call for stories to publication.

So, yeah, the original publisher isn’t doing them anymore.

Finn says “the anthologies have all been picked up again by Tuscany Bay Books,” the imprint of Richard Paolinelli whose own unpublished Planetary Anthology, Pluto, will be next to appear. Contributors to these anthologies have included Jody Lyn Nye, Dawn Witzke, Lou Antonelli, Paolinelli, L Jagi Lamplighter, Hans G. Schantz, John C. Wright, Joshua M. Young and many others.

(18) VIDEO OF THE DAY. In “Lego In Real Life TRILOGY” on YouTube, Brick Bros. Productions looks at what happens when common household objects turn into Legos.

[Thanks to Camestros Felapton, JJ, Cat Eldridge, Chip Hitchcock, Martin Morse Wooster, John King Tarpinian, Mike Kennedy, SF Concatenation’s Jonathan Cowie, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Andrew (please roll him a meatball).]

41 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 10/21/19 Oh, This Is The Scroll, It’s A Beautiful Scroll, And We Call It Pixela Scrollte

  1. (4) NAVIGATING THE ROCKETS SAFELY HOME.

    I was really unimpressed by all of the committee members who were designated accepters for the winners and had not bothered to do any research on the creator or the work, and were unable to make any sort of germane comments when accepting the trophy.

    Being a designated Hugo Trophy Accepter should be more than getting to walk across the stage in a posh outfit and have your photo taken, and if people aren’t willing to do a better job, they should not take on the role of designated accepter.

  2. (11) By the way, Martin Gardner wrote a puzzle column for Asimovs magazine in the magazine’s early days (the early 1980s as I recall). He was very kind to his fans (I got lengthy letters from him in response to letters I wrote, which I treasure).

  3. Re (6) the Tardigrades plagiarism suit: He’s pretty much claiming that copies of his materials were distributed to the show-runners, writers, casting folks, etc with directions that they should be used in plotting the seasons, writing the scripts, casting the show, and so on. That requires a degree of stupidity that I just can’t credit even for television. 🙂

    The judge’s full decision says none of the similarities are “substantial” in some detail. IMHO, he doesn’t have much of case, and even if he did, little or no chance of winning it.

  4. (11) It was great to see Martin Gardner in today’s birthdays. Note that Gardner was also a genre author–I remember reading two short-shorts, “Thang” and “The Devil and the Trombone”, and isfdb tells me he wrote an Oz book, “Visitors from Oz”.

  5. Gardner’s first published credit was for a magic trick in The Sphinx in May 1930; his first book was when he was still a student at the Univ of Chicago in 1935. He published continuously until his death in 2010 (and even after, as some articles were in the pipeline when he died). He was a seminal figure in the skeptic movement and in origami’s growth in America. He was an editor for the kids magazine Humpty Dumpty in the 1950s. He attended Chicon in 1952, and was a member of the Trap Door Spiders in NY along with Asimov and Lester del Rey and Fletcher Pratt. He is probably best known for writing the recreational mathematics column in Scientific American for 25 years. Every two years, his fans (including magicians, puzzle enthusiasts, mathematicians, Carrollians, skeptics, and others) get together in Atlanta for a weekend of celebrating his memory and interests, at the Gathering for Gardner.

  6. (10) Damnation Alley is a perfect example of pre-Star Wars 1970s SF. Grim, slow moving, dystopic, nihilistic, with characters you can barely care about. Which makes it rather ironic that it came out something like five months after Star Wars.

    Which probably is why it bombed so badly. Audiences had something to compare it to which wasn’t grim 70s dystopianism. I mean I know I was still seeing Star Wars in December, and there were still lines at the theater. Even if I had been 17, I probably would have rather seen Star Wars again.

  7. 10) Damnation Alley is a perfect example of pre-Star Wars 1970s SF. Grim, slow moving, dystopic, nihilistic, with characters you can barely care about. Which makes it rather ironic that it came out something like five months after Star Wars.

    Which probably is why it bombed so badly. Audiences had something to compare it to which wasn’t grim 70s dystopianism. I mean I know I was still seeing Star Wars in December, and there were still lines at the theater. Even if I had been 17, I probably would have rather seen Star Wars again.

  8. If people see news about a convention centre fire in New Zealand, don’t worry, it won’t impact CoNZealand. The fire is in Auckland rather than Wellington (and the building isn’t complete yet).

  9. Gardner was certainly an important part of my childhood; when my dad’s copy of Scientific American arrived, the first thing I always did was turn to his column. And over the years, I’ve made so many hexaflexagons (which he popularized, though he didn’t invent them) that I can’t begin to count. I didn’t know he wrote any fiction, though. I’ll have to look into that.

    Damnation Alley may just be the worst adaptation I’ve ever seen. There are worse SF films, certainly, but mostly based on original scripts or crappier originals. What do you guys think? Any competitors you want to name and shame? 🙂

    @JJ: You seem to be suggesting that we should make it even harder to find acceptors, by adding extra demands to the role. It sounds like the con had enough trouble finding anyone to be an acceptor, so I’m not sure that trying to drive potential candidates away is really that great a plan.

    (That said, I’m not a fan of the Retro Hugos in general. I wasn’t that excited by the idea in the first place, and I’ve been even less impressed by the results.)

  10. Xtifr: You seem to be suggesting that we should make it even harder to find acceptors, by adding extra demands to the role. It sounds like the con had enough trouble finding anyone to be an acceptor, so I’m not sure that trying to drive potential candidates away is really that great a plan.

    When relatives and estate reps can’t be found, people on the concom get to be accepters. They love to do this, because they get to wear fancy clothes and go up on stage and accept Hugo trophies and get their pictures taken. I’m just saying that they should be willing to make a little effort in exchange for that — and if they’re not willing to do so, there will be a line of people waiting behind them who are willing to do so.

  11. (15) SOLARIS ON STAGE

    I caught this production. It was good, although I liked the book and both movies better (although bear in mind I’m one of those rare individuals who actually liked the Soderbergh version).

    The set was pretty brilliantly designed, the acting was solid, and the gender-swapping of some of the roles and diverse casting served the show extremely well. I especially appreciated that since I’ve read enough Lem to know that his gender politics were … not great, so the update there was nice.

    However, the adaptation made the mistake of trying to answer too many questions. One of the main points of Solaris is that what’s going on is basically unknowable by human intellect. Losing that — and replacing it with explanations that were, frankly, at times kind of lame — was a major blow to the story.

    I was glad I saw it, though. However, of David Greig’s stage adaptations, my favorite by far remains his (4 hour!) version of Lanark. I’d definitely recommend seeing that one if you ever get the chance.

  12. (4) Nicholas Whyte is doing a great service and to be congratulated (and I would do so on his own blog if livejournal didn’t insist on making things difficult).
    I approve wholeheartedly of the dramatic presentation awards going to the writers families rather than sitting, unvalued, in a production company’s dusty storeroom.

  13. (4) NAVIGATING THE ROCKETS SAFELY HOME.

    I would also like to applaud Nicholas Whyte for his heroic efforts in attempting to find people who will care about and appreciate the trophies (though based on what I have seen of his work as a conscientious Hugo Administrator, it does not surprise me).

    I was shocked when I found out how many Retro Hugo trophies are, to this day, sitting in garages of committee members, unclaimed and unappreciated. It makes me regret that CoNZealand agreed to present Retro Hugos. I kind of feel as though if they’re going to do it, they should produce half as many trophies, and only produce trophy labels and send trophies to the winners for whom they can find still-living descendents.

  14. 11). Edmond Hamilton also wrote most of the Captain Future adventures, popularized in a magazine of the same name…and being updated, modernized and re-imagined by Allen Steele…(Avengers of the Moon from Tor, Captain Future in Love in Amazing Stories,); akso the subject if a Japanese anime series, a German film and maybe a forthcoming film, not to mention the Amazing Stories Selects edition of Cap in Love coming soon. who knows? now that “the story is over”, it might be time for some Captain Future

  15. (13) Not only does Mr. Hurtgen fundamentally misunderstand the capitalist economic system – if one must compare it to a game of chance then a more apt comparison would be poker, a game that requires skill and nerve as well as luck in order to win, than a totally random game of chance like shooting dice – this article makes it appear as if he never even read Gateway, just skimmed the Wiki article. RB isn’t in analysis because he’s guilty over his wealth acquisition. Far from it.

  16. @Miles Carter Not only does Mr. Hurtgen fundamentally misunderstand the capitalist economic system…

    Probably worth remembering that Pohl – a former Young Communist and author of many stories criticising capitalism – had views closer to Hurtgen’s than to yours, though.

  17. Thanks, folks. You would not believe how difficult it is to track down the families!

    Just to respond to a point from OGH:

    the job would have been a little easier if the nominees with accepters had won

    One of the problems is that quite a lot of them were running against each other…

  18. @ Nicholas Whyte: As far as I can tell, you could easily group them into convenient groups of siz, where they were running against the five others in the same grouping. But only if you do the grouping by category.

  19. I was shocked when I found out how many Retro Hugo trophies are, to this day, sitting in garages of committee members, unclaimed and unappreciated.

    Nicholas Whyte and the other volunteers who chased down the proper recipients have my sincere thanks.

    As a long-ago newspaper columnist who used to do a lot of digging for esoteric things like this, I’d like to help do the research to find the proper descendant or estate representative for these orphaned trophies. Who should I contact?

  20. @Sophie Jane he absolutely did, it’s palpable in the Heechee series and even more so in his Eschaton Sequence. Both views are wrong, of course. It’s therefore amusing that Pohl achieved great success in the free market of the novel-reading public while failing to see how this contradicted his economic views.

  21. @ Miles Carter: I don’t see how one person thriving in a capitalist system while so many others don’t contradicts Pohl’s economic views, even if he is the one who thrived.

  22. rcade: As a long-ago newspaper columnist who used to do a lot of digging for esoteric things like this, I’d like to help do the research to find the proper descendant or estate representative for these orphaned trophies. Who should I contact?

    What a great thing to do! I’d suggest that you start by contacting Kevin Standlee (info [at] thehugoawards [dot] org).

  23. @4: IIRC, the studios tended to treat the first couple of decades of Dramatic Presentation Hugos with the same disregard (or at least very inconsistent regard) that they now treat the Retro Hugos. I suspect there are such insignificant amounts of money or publicity to be wrung from such old works that this is not surprising; getting the awards directly to people involved is indeed noble.

    @JJ/@xtifr: Possibly the concom should look for accepters among the smaller number of people who nominate for the Retro Hugos? ISTM that they would actually have some interest, where people in the concom might not — and random nominaters would also be more likely to have time during the convention; perks for concom (if that is what these accepters were) aren’t an issue by themselves, but this should be done better if it’s to be done at all. (My preference would be that it not be done at all — certainly not for the best body-of-work awards, which were shown to be badly broken all the way back in 2001 — but I doubt we’ll be shut of them for a while.)

  24. On tracking down family members for the Retro Hugo trophies: I’m assuming the folks doing this are aware of the SFWA Estates Project, which might have contact information on the relevant estates (which often are the families or are in contact with them). Additional authors and artists not in the SFWA estates directory might be found through the WATCH database (https://norman.hrc.utexas.edu/watch/), which again tracks rights contacts rather than family members per se, but you can often use the former to get to the latter (if they’re not already the same people).

  25. I hadn’t noticed the resemblance between the Gateway prospectors and the publishing industry before, but that might have been an inspiration for Pohl – as an agent, editor and author he was probably well aware of talented authors who had never hit it big due to chance events (like a supportive editor dying, or a change in fashion regarding which subgenres are “in”) or who had become super-popular while other apparently equally talented authors remained only popular.

  26. Xtifr: Worst adaptation? How about Logan’s Run (1976)?

    I’m still chagrined (43 years later) that I paid to see it.

  27. @gottacook
    We paid money to get into an air-conditioned theater where they happened to be showing it. Or so I’m claiming. (After standing outside in line for an hour or so, on a very warm day, air-conditioned theater was lovely.)

  28. @gottacook: a strong contender indeed! I think it’s a not-quite-as-bad movie based on a not-quite-as-good book, but it’s certainly worth mentioning in the same breath.

    Still, Logan’s Run had at least three characters that were at least vaguely recognizable from the book. That’s three more than Damnation Alley had! 🙂

  29. @gottacook

    Worst adaptation? How about Logan’s Run (1976)?

    Logan’s Run had Jenny Agutter and Farrah Fawcett in it, neither of whom wore foundation garments. I was 14 when it came out and found no fault with it.

  30. Hmm, sez here that The Food of the Gods was a finalist for the Saturn Awards. But aside from that anomalous tidbit, all the evidence I can find suggests Hampus may have me beat. Anyone else have a challenger to offer? 🙂

  31. There are contenders such as Earthsea (2004), Seeker: The Dark Is Rising (2007) and Vampire$ (1998).

  32. Am I the only one who thinks Logan’s Run the film was an improvement on the novel?

  33. Patrick Morris Miller: Am I the only one who thinks Logan’s Run the film was an improvement on the novel?

    Even though I didn’t think much of the movie, I find it hard to focus on the qualities of the book per se. Before I read it I attended a talk by William F. Nolan where in the course of a long and colorful anecdote he said in essence that he and George Clayton Johnson had written the book with the purpose in mind of selling the rights to a studio for $100,000, and they had succeeded. And since this was at the end of the Sixties, I was impressed that they had put one over on the movie establishment, which so often before had treated sf in a shabby way. The backstory has forever biased me to think of the novel Logan’s Run as a triumph.

  34. @Hampus:
    Oh, good lord, The Seeker. I watched that on an airplane once, and stayed through to the end in kind of a train wreck mode as it went from ‘it’s nice they kept that scene from the book’ to ‘where did the possessed mall cops come from’ to ‘whose a**hole did they pull that out of’. It’s kind of sad that the climactic twist ending was completely different from the book and yet so predictable from halfway through the movie that I mostly stayed watching to see if they really were going to screw it up that badly. I suppose this is what happens when you take a story heavily steeped in early British mythology and give it to a film production house run by American conservative Christians.

    The only positive reason to watch the movie was to count the tooth marks Christopher Eccleston left while chewing the scenery.

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