Pixel Scroll 8/23/19 Pixels Of Lily Help Me Scroll At Night

(1) EATING THE FANTASTIC. Scott Edelman invites listeners to share subcontinental cuisine with Lucy A. Snyder in episode 103 of his Eating the Fantastic podcast.

Lucy A. Snyder

Lucy A. Snyder’s a seven-time Bram Stoker Award finalist and a five-time winner, including for her first novel Spellbent in 2009, and most recently for her collection While the Black Stars Burn in 2016. She has published more than 80 short stories in Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, Strange Horizons, Weird Tales, and more. Her nonfiction book Shooting Yourself in the Head for Fun and Profit: A Writer’s Survival Guide. was published in 2014. She was a Bram Stoker Award nominee at this year’s StokerCon for her collection Garden of Eldritch Delights.

We took off for lunch one afternoon to Punjab Cafe, which has been operating in Quincy since 2000, and is by all accounts the best Indian restaurant in the area. They had a tasty looking buffet option available, but we ordered a la carte instead, because a buffet is definitely not the way you want to go when you’re trying to maintain the flow of a conversation and are both wired to a recorder.

We discussed how Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time made her want to become a writer, the rare bad advice she got from one of her Clarion instructors, the way Hunter S. Thompson and Truman Capote taught her about consensual truth, how she learned to embrace her uneasy relationship with horror, the time Tim Powers said of one of her early stories that “this is an example of everything that’s wrong with modern science fiction,” why if you want to write flash fiction you should learn to write poetry, what you should consider if you’re starting a new writing workshop, how best to prepare for public readings of emotionally difficult stories, the way she used Kickstarter to continue her Jessie Shimmer series (plus everything you need to know to start your own campaign), what it was like writing in the Doctor Who and X-Files universes, and much, much more.

(2) CAT’S GOT HIS TONGUE. Another work of feline genius! “On Writing by Timothy the Talking Cat” at Camestros Felapton.

…Being a writer is a lot like being on a roller coaster. For a start, if you are a small child or a cat some spotty gatekeeper won’t let you be a writer. “You have to be this tall to be a writer!” they say. “Keep you arms inside the carriage while writing is in motion” they say. Ignore these self-appointed petty tyrants in the fairground of publishing! You only need TWO things to be a writer 1. the willpower 2. the determination and 3. a valid ticket from the ticket booth….

(3) KEEPS ON BURNIN’. Slate’s Evan Urquhart brings history up to date in “Gamergate Never Died”.

… Last but not least there’s Gamergate itself, which has survived not just as an influence on current events and a template for subsequent harassment campaigns, but in something close to its initial form: The Gamergate subreddit is still very active. Its participants still mob journalists who report critically on them and games. So “gamers” didn’t die, and neither did socially conscious games journalism, nor efforts to increase diversity in games. Even individual Gamergate targets like Quinn, Sarkeesian, and others continue to work in their respective fields. But neither, it seems, did Gamergate.

Recent topics on the Gamergate subreddit—in 2019!—include lists of video games and game development studios to avoid because they pander to “social justice warriors” and complaints about Kotaku’s coverage of diversity in games and the industry. There are posts in the past month continuing to detail, and criticize, everything Quinn does. The lesson for all of us is that reactionary ideas and movements and cults of personality—ones that oppose progress and equality—won’t simply disappear even if they “lose,” even with the passage of time. Reporters who write about Gamergate—or any of the topics it reacted against—can still expect a brigade of hundreds of negative replies on social media. It hasn’t died. It never ends….

(4) SF DISTINCTIVES. John Plotz interviews “Samuel Delany on Capitalism, Racism, and Science Fiction” at Public Books.

JP: This focus on the technical aspects of writing reminds me of what you’ve said before about the sentence: that the sentence is the most important unit of writing for you.

SD: For me, yes. I do go along with Gertrude Stein, in that the paragraph is the emotional unit of the English language. It’s also a point about the sentence instead of the word.

JP: Is that how you think of your own writing? Do you think of it as sentence-making?

SD: Basically, yes.

JP: And is that different for science fiction, versus fantasy and other kinds of genres?

SD: No, that’s not where the difference lies; I think all writing requires that. But I do think science fiction allows some unique combinations of words. It’s a genre that is distinguished, because certain things can happen in the language of science fiction that don’t happen anywhere else. Science fiction tends to take the literal meaning. If it has a choice between a figurative meaning and a literal meaning, the literal meaning is always available. Her world exploded. In science fiction, it’s not an emotionally fuzzy metaphor. Instead, it can literally mean a planet belonging to a woman blew up. As in, Princess Leia: Her world exploded.

(5) TREND INTERRUPTED. NPR’s Glen Weldon says that  “In The Brisk Horror-Comedy ‘Ready Or Not,’ Bluebloods Are Out For Blood”.

Call it The Film About Rich People Hunting Poor People … That Lived.

But that’s a mouthful. Maybe The Hunt Strikes Back; it’s pithier.

Just two weeks ago, Ready or Not seemed poised to represent a second data point in 2019’s “Murderous, Mansion-Dwelling One-Percenters In Film” trend graph, preceded by Craig Zobel’s “blue bloods vs. red staters” thriller The Hunt and followed in November by Rian Johnson’s latter-day Clue riff, Knives Out.

But with The Hunt withdrawn from release, Ready or Not assumes pride of place … albeit in the doggiest of days of the dead of August. And what should have blossomed into a delicate arc describing an emerging cinematic trend (and launching a thousand thinkpieces in the process) instead reverts to a flat line connecting two 2019 movies that both feature 1. rich jerks wielding bladed weapons in elegantly appointed rooms and 2. dumbwaiters, probably. One assumes.

(6) CUTTING THE WEB. The Hollywood Reporter chronicles “How ‘Spider-Man’ Divorce Shows Ugly Side of Fandom”.

…While both studios should be enjoying a victory lap after a successful summer, with Disney, hot off of their Marvel Studios Comic-Con announcements, set to make D23 this weekend’s event, and Sony releasing an extended cut of Far From Home over labor day weekend. Instead, Spider-Man has become victim of a messy custody battle that has dominated social media and shown just how ugly Disney fandom can get with #SaveSpiderMan and #BoycottSony hashtags trending this week.

Battle lines have been drawn on social media, and by way of willful ignorance on the parts of adults online behaving like children, Sony has been made the bad guy for refusing to give up its asset. While details surrounding Disney and Sony’s split have varied, The Hollywood Reporter reported that the breakup comes down to money. Disney, already possessing the merchandizing rights for Spider-Man and benefiting from the use of the character in the MCU, sought at least a 30 percent stake in future Spider-Man grosses. Others have reported figures as high as 50 percent. However you cut it, those numbers are a significant uptick from Disney’s previous 5 percent stake. It’s also worth noting that while Sony’s Spider-Man films may receive an uptick in box office grosses for their MCU connection, the studio doesn’t receive a share of the grosses for the Marvel Studios films in which Holland’s Spider-Man appears.

(7) ALL IN THE FAMILEE. TMZ, in “Stan Lee’s Daughter Sides W/Sony Over Disney in SPIDER-MAN/MCU SPLIT,” says that Stan Lee’s daughter, J.C. Lee, approves of Sony withdrawing Spider-Man because “Marvel and Disney seeking total control of my father’s creations must be checked and balanced by others.”

…She goes on … “Whether it’s Sony or someone else’s, the continued evolution of Stan’s characters and his legacy deserves multiple points of view.”“When my father died, no one from Marvel or Disney reached out to me. From day one, they have commoditized my father’s work and never shown him or his legacy any respect or decency.” JC’s parting words … “In the end, no one could have treated my father worse than Marvel and Disney’s executives.” Ouch!!!

(8) AVENGERSLAND. Cnet took notes: “Disneyland’s ‘Avengers Campus’ theme park unveiled at D23: Here’s everything we know” Tagline: “At least Spider-Man will definitely be involved with this one.” Disney’s Paris and Hong Kong parks also have MCU attractions on the way.

Disney finally unveiled new details about its new Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU)-themed area arriving at Disneyland at its D23 expo on Thursday. Disney had originally announced the new superhero areas coming to three Disney parks in March last year, dreamed up in partnership with Marvel Studios.

Here’s what we know so far.

Disneyland, California

“We’re building an immersive super hero-themed land at Disney California Adventure to enable our guests to join the Avengers to save the world,” Bob Chapek, chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, said at D23 Expo, ComicBook reported.

The Avengers Campus will open in summer, 2020.

(9) TODAY IN HISTORY.

  • August 23, 1965  — In the United Kingdom, Dr. Who And The Daleks was released which starred Peter Cushing as Doctor Who.

(10) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born August 23, 1869 Edgar Lee Masters. Author of the Spoon River Anthology which, since each poem is by someone who’s dead, should count as genre, shouldn’t it?  (Died 1950.)
  • Born August 23, 1927 Peter Wyngarde. Not a lead actor in any genre series but interesting none-the-less. For instance, he shows up in the two Sherlock Holmes series, one with Peter Cushing and one with Jeremy Brett. He’s one in a series of Doctor Who with the Fifth Doctor and he faces off against the classic Avenger pairing of Steed and Peel. He shows up as Number Two in The Prisoner as well. (Died 2018.)
  • Born August 23, 1929 Vera Miles, 90. Lila Crane in Psycho which she reprised in Psycho II. On a much more family friendly note, she’s Silly Hardy in Tarzan’s Hidden Jungle, the very last of the twelve Tarzan pictures released by RKO. She has done one-offs on Buck Rogers in Twentieth Century, Fantasy Island, The Twilight ZoneAlfred Hitchcock Presents, I Spy and The Man from U.N.C.L.E. 
  • Born August 23, 1939 Barbara Eden, 80. Jeannie on I Dream of Jeannie. Her first genre role however was on Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea as Lt. Cathy Connors though she’d show up a few years later as Greta Heinrich on The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm. Some thirty-five years after I Dream of Jeannie went off the air, she had a recurring as Aunt Irma on Sabrina, the Teenage Witch
  • Born August 23, 1944 Karl Alexander, 75. Author of Time after Time, which was filmed directed and written by Nicholas Meyer. Cast includes Malcolm McDowell, Mary Steenburgen and David Warner. Sequel of Jaclyn the Ripper is not as well known. 
  • Born August 23, 1963 Ed Gale, 56. Ok I now introduce you to the man inside of Howard the Duck. (Sorry JJ.) Well someone has to play that crappy role. And did you know that it’s been retooled to be called by the studio, and I kid you not, Howard: A New Breed of Hero? Did you know Seth Green voices Howard the Duck in Guardians of The Galaxy?
  • Born August 23, 1965 Chris Bachalo, 54. Illustrator well known for his work on DC Comics’ Shade, the Changing Man and Gaiman’s two Death series, Death: The High Cost of Living and Death: The Time of Your Life
  • Born August 23, 1970 River Phoenix. The Young Indiana Jones in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade was his best known genre role. He was also Wolfgang Müller in Explorers, and he’s Talbot Roe in Silent Tongue, a horror film most likely you’ve never heard of. (Died 1993.)

(11) COMICS SECTION.

  • John A Arkansawyer sent the link to Wondermark with a note, “I’m surprised this technology was never used during the glory days of the APA era.”

(12) WILSON LEAVES WW. ComicBook.com is there when “Wonder Woman Writer Announces She’s Leaving the Title”.

Today marks the end of an era for DC’s Wonder Woman, as G. Willow Wilson is set to exit the title in the coming months. On Thursday, Wilson took to Twitter to confirm the news, citing that the exit will be so she can schedule out time for a “bucket-list-dream-project”.

Wilson also confirmed that Steve Orlando will be taking over the title, something that had previously been hinted at in DC’s solicitations….

(13) SHIRLEY JACKSON. LitHub does a post of clippings of quotes from “11 Famous Writers on the Genius and Influence of Shirley Jackson”.

Victor LaValle:

I’ve probably reread The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson more than any other book. It’s not her greatest, that would be We Have Always Lived at the Castle, but I got to it when I was a teenager and so it entered my bloodstream early. I read it three or four times in high school alone.

There are lots of reasons why I love it, Jackson is an underrated literary stylist, and I love the way she loathes human beings. It’s cruel, but it’s almost always funny, too. Misanthropy always goes down better with a sense of humor. But maybe the reason I most love that book is for the house itself. Jackson does a wondrous job of animating Hill House without ever really answering the question of whether its truly haunted or merely haunted by the imagination of a lonely young woman.

(14) HISTORY. “Life of Brian: The most blasphemous film ever?” What are the other contenders?

Forty years after Life of Brian was first released, Nicholas Barber looks at why the Monty Python film was banned – and went on to become a box office hit.

It may not be true that all publicity is good publicity, but in the case of Monty Python’s Life of Brian, which was released 40 years ago, some of the bad publicity was heaven-sent. The comedy team’s irreverent Biblical romp had been due to open on 200 screens across the US, but after various religious groups protested against it, the number of screens was tripled. “They actually made me rich,” said John Cleese of the protesters on one American talk show. “I feel we should send them a crate of champagne or something.”

The idea for Life of Brian came about when the team was promoting its previous film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Eric Idle joked that their next project would be called “Jesus Christ: Lust For Glory”, and his team-mates realised that no one had ever made a comedy about the Messiah. Initially, they planned to lampoon Jesus himself, but the more they read up on him, the less keen they were. “It was quite obvious that there was very little to ridicule in Jesus’s life, and therefore we were onto a loser,” said Michael Palin in 1979. “Jesus was a very straight, direct man making good sense, so we decided it would be a very shallow film if it was just about.”

They moved onto the character of Brian, a 13th disciple who never made it into the Bible because he always arrived five minutes late and missed the miracles. But they eventually settled on the premise that the hapless Brian (Graham Chapman) wouldn’t have any connection with Jesus at all; he would be someone who happened to live in Roman-occupied Judea at the same time, and who was mistaken for a Messiah by the fanatical masses.

The Pythons’ satire wouldn’t target Jesus or his teachings, instead caricaturing political militants, credulous crowds, the appeal of throwing stones at people, the complexities of Latin grammar, and the difficulties of being a tyrant when you’ve got a speech impediment. “I thought we’d been quite good,” said Idle in Robert Sellers’ behind-the-scenes book, Very Naughty Boys. “We’d avoided being specifically rude to specific groups.”

(15) PRESENT. “Hail Satan?: The Satanists battling for religious freedom” – BBC has the story.

Everything you know about Satanism is wrong.

At least that’s what a new documentary about the Satanic Temple could be about to prove.

Despite the similarity of the name, the Temple is different to The Church of Satan, established in 1966 by chat show circuit celebrity Anton LaVey in San Francisco, California.

Human sacrifice? Wrong. Blood drinking? Wrong. Black Mass? Well, sort of right.

The Temple was founded in 2013 with a mission statement “to encourage benevolence and empathy among all people, reject tyrannical authority, advocate practical common sense and justice, and be directed by the human conscience to undertake noble pursuits guided by the individual will”.

Hail Satan? directed by US film-maker Penny Lane, follows the Temple’s attempts to curtail what they see as the encroachment of Christianity on US life through its growing political influence….

(16) UNDERWORLDS. Alix Nathan looks beneath the surface in “The Art of Subterranean Fiction” at CrimeReads.

…Perhaps the most famous novel of the subterranean genre is Jules Verne’s Journey to the Centre of the Earth, in which Verne’s hero, Professor Lidenbrock, and his nephew, Axel, believe that there are volcanic tubes leading to the earth’s centre. Verne is a great story-teller and the adventures of these two very different characters and their guide Hans, involve natural dangers like running out of water and deadly storms as well as encounters with creatures from a far distant past.

Although there’s no actual time travel, Verne’s underworld seems located in prehistory, where everything is gigantic, whether it be insects, mushrooms or petrified trees; where an Icthyosaurus wins a battle with a Plesioraurus. The travellers’ most terrifying experience is an encounter with an enormous prehistoric man, all of 12 feet tall, watching over a herd of huge mastodons….

(17) D23 NEWS. SYFY Wire shares some of the exhibits from D23: “Disney unveils first look at Monsters at Work, Forky shorts, and new Phineas & Ferb film at D23”.

…The monsters aren’t the only Pixar creations headed to Disney+ for new adventures. Toy Story 4‘s Forky, the fan-favorite piece of trash who became a toy, will return in a new series of short films called Forky Asks a Question, starring Tony Hale reprising his role from the film. Fans in attendance at the presentation got a sneak peek of the first short, which features Forky talking to Hamm the Piggy Bank about the concept of money. That clip hasn’t landed online yet, but we’ve got the poster for the shorts right here:

(18) MARVEL STUDIOS UNVEILINGS. The Hollywood Reporter also picked up some news at D23: “Marvel Unveils 3 New Disney+ Shows Including ‘She-Hulk’ and ‘Moon Knight'”.

Kevin Feige also revealed new details for ‘WandaVision’ and ‘Falcon & The Winter Soldier.’ Marvel Studios confirmed three new series in the works for Disney+ at D23: She Hulk, Moon Knight and Ms. Marvel.

She-Hulk — AKA attorney Jennifer Walters, cousin to Bruce Banner, whose blood transfusion was responsible for her powers — first appeared in 1980’s The Savage She-Hulk No. 1, and was the last major Marvel character co-created by Stan Lee. After her original series ended after two years, she became a member of both the Avengers and the Fantastic Four as the character developed more of a distinct personality from her male counterpart, gaining a stronger sense of humor and intelligence and deciding that she preferred being super-strong and green permanently — or, at least, as much as possible. (Unlike the male Hulk, She-Hulk traditionally maintains her smarts and personality when Hulked out.)

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, Michael Toman, Alan Baumler, Cat Eldridge, Chip Hitchcock, JJ, Mike Kennedy, Martin Morse Wooster, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Lee Whiteside.]

44 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 8/23/19 Pixels Of Lily Help Me Scroll At Night

  1. (7) Stan Lee’s Daughter Sides W/Disney ?

    I think you mean Sony, Mike. She is pissed off as hell with both Disney and Marvel.

  2. “Life of Brian: The most blasphemous film ever?” What are the other contenders?

    Dogma? Or perhaps Good Omens, according to some christians.

  3. Is “subcontinental” the current favored term for “cultures & geography currently covered by Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka”? I’m never sure what to say: “south-central Eurasia” is what I used most recently., but I always feel like I’m fumbling and waving. The Curry Region?

  4. (18) She-Hulk and Ms. Marvel on Disney Plus? Well, hell. I was contemplating signing up, and I guess I’ll have to now. Although I honestly don’t know where I’ll find the time to watch all these streaming services. You have to sleep sometime.

  5. @Steve Green, @Andrew: the headline as I saw it just now is “Stan Lee Daughter Sides w/ Sony Over Disney In ‘Spider-Man’/MCU Split”; don’t know whether they updated, or a cut-and-paste failed somewhere. (@OGH: typo?)

    @Avilyn: the story mentions an attempted fuss over The Exorcist. ISTM it’s a matter of dates, just like treason; the Pythons said nothing about the Christ and still got put up to be pilloried live by a couple of CofE bigwigs, but two decades later the CofE held its tongue and even the Catholic church had the sense not to fan the flames over the Christ having issues (not to mention their deity incarnating as female) — although the hierarchists may have correctly expected the Catholic League to speak up, leaving the formal church with clean hands.

  6. @Doctor Science: the BBC seems to favor “South Asia”; I’ve also heard reference to “the Indian subcontinent”, but calling the land mass that punched up the Himalayas “the subcontinent” avoids annoying other countries on that plate — AFAICT there’s no other geography the term could apply to. Wikipedia discusses this, including that the two terms aren’t always describing exactly the same area, and notes that “curry” is seen in other places.

  7. There’s a good episode of Gastropod (a podcast, available wherever pods are cast) on curry and its many forms.

    Also, in the UK, at least, I believe “South Asia” is the preferred term for referring to that particular region. I think “the subcontinent” is the US term (maybe?), and pretty safe to use, as long as it’s not preceded by any particular country in the region.

  8. I found Ready or Not to be a lot of fun, and probably the bloodiest comedy of all time. Samara Weaving plays the bride exceedingly well.

    Two nights later I saw The Nightingale, about colonial atrocities in Australia/Tasmania. I had to read a statement from the distributor containing content warnings before I could buy a ticket. A brutal but fascinating film. I really “enjoyed” it.

    Seeing those two back to back left me battered and bruised.

  9. (3) I’ve been thinking about why e.g. Gamergate is still alive, but the whole Sad Puppies thing has essentially fizzled out. Am I looking in the wrong place — to paraphrase that article, is “the community of hardcore SFF fans who are male, sexist, and anti-PC is as lively as ever.”?

    Because what it looks to me like is that the SFF community is pretty much the only one that’s been able to repel a concerted attack by neo-fascists. Given how many other communities (and countries!) have been targets of such attacks in recent years, I’ve been thinking about what was different for SFF and whether any of our communal experiences are transferable.

  10. @Chip Hitchcock:

    Googling about, I see that “South Asian” is now the common term in news articles when talking about the (large & varied) such communities in New Jersey, where I live. Good to know! “Asian” isn’t really useful around here, because there are also large & varied East Asian communities, plus some Southeast Asian & Fillipino.

    Interestingly, the only people using “subcontinent” are specifically Catholic communities of people from South Asia. That may reflect an older wave of immigration.

  11. @Doctor Science,

    The Hugos played a big part.

    The implication that there was a silent majority of fans who were against progressive, left-leaning, more diverse works being nominated or winning Hugo awards was trotted out a fair bit by Sad Puppies.

    Fans coming out against those Sad Puppies online helped.
    But it was the Hugo award results that proved that there was not a silent majority of fans pining for the Good Old Days of Nutty Nuggets. That’s not something that other communities under attack have been able to easily repeat.

    The Hugo Awards (because it was effectively a census of interested fans) dispelled the illusion. The votes did not lie. Even if Sad Puppies were vocal, they were very much in the minority Hugo voting fandom.

    With so many bots & sock puppet accounts on social media, it’s easy to be swayed into thinking that an extremist viewpoint is held by more people than it actually is. And if you hold those views, you might feel like you weren’t alone & be emboldened. After No Awards were announced, any Sad Puppies watching would have had that illusion dispelled.

  12. @Soon Lee:

    Good points! Things like the WSFS Business Meeting being “in-person only” meant that it couldn’t be easily hijacked. And this is not coincidence! The SFF community faced a lot of issues waaay before others did, and worked out ways to deal with them.

    Part of our success was having a deep history of community discussion and problem-solving. Fanzines and letters columns were a lot like a “slow Internet”; SFF was also an early adopter of the Internet, even before the WWW. Because there were established places for public discussion — here & Making Light, in particular — it was comparatively easy for people to come together, talk about the issues, and discussion possible solutions in considerable depth.

  13. Doctor Science: Is “subcontinental” the current favored term for “cultures & geography currently covered by Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka”?

    I don’t claim any authority for it one way or the other — it just sounded like something that would work in one of these item titles.

  14. Thanks to all who pointed out that I left an important datum — Sony — out of my transcription of the headline about Stan Lee’s daughter. Appertain yourselves a case of your favorite beverage!

  15. “Because what it looks to me like is that the SFF community is pretty much the only one that’s been able to repel a concerted attack by neo-fascists.”

    I’d say that Metalgate was dead on arrival and in Comicsgate, the alt-righters are busy eating each other.

    Also, not sure if the gaters are more defeated in SFF than anywhere else. Puppies had their fight at the Hugos. The Gamergaters at Wikipedia. Both were roundly lost and constant tries to rewrite history exists to this day. But they still aren’t gone.

  16. Hampus Eckerman on August 24, 2019 at 12:05 am said:

    “Because what it looks to me like is that the SFF community is pretty much the only one that’s been able to repel a concerted attack by neo-fascists.”

    I’d say that Metalgate was dead on arrival and in Comicsgate, the alt-righters are busy eating each other.

    Yes, Comicsgate has been extraordinarily self-damaging. Not only is it consumed with infighting and factions, many of the people who threw money at these supposed ‘rebel’ creators ended up with late content, poor quality content or no content at all. Each of these culture wars have had their fair share of grifting but comicsgate was the most blatant and the one that’s spread the most disillusionment quickly.

  17. Apropos of not much, I recently stumbled onto this very current quote from decades back. I’m yanking five words from it to make it a little harder to guess the source:

    Passing gets one over on the side of privilege; it does not end resentment against the system. The pressure builds up even more because it can’t be expressed. The day came when it was more important to me to find out whether my adopted family could accept me as I truly am than it was to preserve my happy relationship.

    Any takers?

  18. @ Chip Hitchcock
    South Asian is the standard term that scholars use for the whole area, although it is not really my field.

    At least in the US, the term “Desi” is used to refer to all people of South Asian background.

  19. One thing to remember about various neo-fascist groups is that they are dependant on success. As long as they have success, they can gain new “soft” followers, but strong setbacks lead to loss of the followers and also to infighting among the hard core. But there are still lots of what I’d call sympathy for the puppy viewpoint among sf fans (I read one such public comment from a very well-respected fan just recently that I interpreted in that light).

    I think there are several reasons why sf fandom was able to fight back so effectively against the puppies. One is that sf fandom had real organisational and ideological strength, something which the commercial entities that easily folded against GamerGate largely lacked. Another is that the Puppies were simply incompetent: the books they picked and promoted were crap. Even the sf fans who were sympathetic to some of their arguments could easily see that the Puppy works were poorly told and very much self-serving. A third was that sf fandom has a real tradition of satire and resistance, which made sf fandom embrace Chuck Tingle—fascist movements simply cannot stand or understand humour.

  20. @John A. Arkansawyer: The first thing to leap to my mind is Heinlein’s Friday (Friday had an adopted family in NZ and was passing as human).

  21. @Andrew: You know me (or Heinlein) too well! I was surprised at how easily that paragraph could have been written today when I read it.

    After OGH posted that radio adaptation of “The Green Hills of Earth”, I got onto a Heinlein jag for about a month, re–reading mostly the short fiction and the late novels, starting with I Will Fear No Evil. I was struck by how current certain of the attitudes were in those late novels, nestled right up with now-obsolete (one hopes) ideas.

  22. @John A. Arkansawyer: I recently read Farah Mendelson’s book on Heinlein, so certain things were fresh in my mind

  23. Meredith Moment: The first volume of The Complete Short Fiction of Clifford D. Simak (I Am Crying All Inside) is currently $2.99.

    And the other eleven volumes have prices inexplicably ranging from $7.99 to $1.99, so you can get the full dozen for $71.28 …

  24. The Last Temptation had quite a reputation as a blasphemous film. (I don’t think it is – it’s not clear to me it’s even unorthodox – but then I don’t think Life of Brian is either, so what do I know?)

  25. (10) He’s behind a mask, but Peter Wyngarde was also memorable as Klytus, Ming’s lead henchman, in 1980’s Flash Gordon.

  26. Peter Wyngarde… a long time ago now, I did a silly online thing about hairstyles in SF and related TV; Wyngarde featured in it due to his inverse hair-to-evil ratio (the more hair he was showing, the more likely he was to be a good guy.

    Jason King – extravagant early Seventies bouffant and handlebar moustache – hero of his own show.

    Timov in “Planet of Fire” – hair hidden by turban, pencil moustache – pragmatist inclined to evil but ultimately drawn onto the right side.

    Number Two in “The Prisoner” – clean-shaven with sensible haircut – urbanely evil.

    Klytus in “Flash Gordon” – all features concealed by metal death mask – irredeemably nasty.

    See?

  27. @Doctor Science

    My theory is that the puppies set themselves a very specific and measurable target of Get Some Hugos, later recast as Destroy The Hugos, and so it was pretty clear when they failed.
    Comicsgate, on the other hand, with its landscape of trying to fund comics with the right ideological bent, is much easier to claim victories in, and all it requires is for its supporters to keep on spending – there’s no specific opposition to beat, no community to outvote it’s kickstarters – therefore the demoralising defeats that demonstrated they were a minority and sent the puppies off to pastures new won’t occur in CG.

  28. Barbara Eden was also in the fillum of Verne’s Five Weeks in a Balloon. That ranks a genre, right?

  29. Dr. Strangelobe ask Barbara Eden was also in the fillum of Verne’s Five Weeks in a Balloon

    I doesn’t appear to have any fantastical elements in it, so I didn’t include it. It’s barely even pulp in nature. Just because Verne wrote it doesn’t make it genre.

  30. @Karl-Johan Norén

    But there are still lots of what I’d call sympathy for the puppy viewpoint among sf fans

    I think the “nutty nuggets” part of their message struck a chord with fans who mainly read older SF and are not all that well read in contemporary SF.

  31. Barbara Eden was also in the excellent The Seven Faces of Dr Lao, the film version of Finney’s The Circus of Dr Lao, which is unquestionably genre, and a rare example of a film that is better (IMO) than its (excellent) source material.

  32. PhilRM says Barbara Eden was also in the excellent The Seven Faces of Dr Lao, the film version of Finney’s The Circus of Dr Lao, which is unquestionably genre, and a rare example of a film that is better (IMO) than its (excellent) source material.

    Good catch. Can’t say the same for Something Wicked This Way Wicked Comes.

  33. @Doctor Science: Soon Lee puts details on most of my immediate response to your question. The other bit is that by contrast, AFAICT Gamergate never involved a formal vote; it was just assaults by a wide collection of nasty people. (In case anyone needs reminding both how nasty the people are and how trivial their “victory” conditions, this piece by Sarah Gailey — I didn’t remember it, but looked it up because flap copy said she’d written for my home-town paper.

  34. I can think of a number of factors that made the difference between the success of Gamergate and the failure of the Sad/Rabid Puppies.

    The “Fans are Slans” persecution complex is even greater in gamers then SF&F fans. There’s been a persistant belief since the 1980s that game fans are a special, select group apart from society, persecuted for being gamers. As opposed to gamers being from all walks of life like a genuine mass medium. OK granted, there was TIpper Gore and her legislation, but seriously, she was over 30 years ago.
    SF&F Fandom has already been through at least a couple cycles of changes in the literature. Golden Age, Silver Age, New Wave, etc.
    SF&F fandom also has a longer historiy of critical appraisal, so the whole “Gaming should be treated as a respected art from…SO DON’T ANALYZE IT!” propaganda didn’t translate well.
    SF&F fandom’s major areas of social media aren’t Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Google+. It’s a lot harder to orchestrate pile-ons in discrete websites like File 770.
    SF&F fandom also had an earlier experience of dealing with online harassment, flamewars and bad behavior in Livejournal and Usenet. I think that innoculated the community a bit, or at least showed people how to fight mass attacks on a community.
    SF&F fandom has a much more visible woman and minority contingent, so the “Women: Threat or Menace?” element received a lot more pushback. Not to downplay the sexism and misogyny that women SF&F fans face, but it’s nowhere near the level that women deal with in gaming.
    The big thing is that the Gamergate attacks fell on fertile ground in that a lot of companies in the hobby basically agreed with them- they wanted to keep putting out sexist, racist stuff without being subject to critical analysis.

    I mean the major thing to remember is that GamerGate was foremost a harrassment campaign, started by a particular asshole to torment his ex girlfriend. Any philisophical elments, whether “Ethics in jornalism” or “Don’t critique anything but the gameplay” were basically just tacked onto a core of “Do you resent and hate women and retty much anybody that’s not a white cishet male? GamerGate is the hate group for you! ”

    And frankly, GamerGate won. Critical analysis of games is now strongly limited by the fear of harassment, even the slightest attempt to make games less sexist and racist encounter mass pushback, and I know a number of women who either dropped out of gaming, or seriously limited their professional involvement. Things in gaming are still bad, and GG served as the model for the mass disinformation campaigns in 2016 on up.

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