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Star Smashers of the Galaxy RangersE thought of beforeThe Pulp ra is a period roughly between the 1890s and 1950s in which inexpensive fiction magazines were mass printed on cheap wood pulp paper They were not not Tote Sprache: Cartoons auf Latein exclusively science fiction SF but the genre definitely got its start in these publications with luridxploitative and sensational subject matter The uality was to put it politely highly variable The top writers of SF Clarke Asimov Heinlein tc got their start in put it politely highly variable The top writers of SF Clarke Asimov Heinlein tc got their start in but most of it was being written to provide cheap uick The Professional Victims Handbook entertainment with literary uality on the bottom of the priority list Star Smashers most directly references the Lensman and Skylark series of E E Doc Smith who is arguably the Father of Space Opera If younjoyed the Star Wars series you are Nightmares Angels enjoying the direct descendants of Smith s writing including thepisodic nature of the stories However the scientific pretensions of the main characters are also Harrison s satire on the positions of John W Campbell the hugely influential American science fiction writer and In the Blink of an Eye editor Asditor of Astounding Science Fiction later called Analog Science Fiction and Fact from late 1937 until his death his dictates on story content shaped the genre for generations While his insistence on scientific understanding by writers improved the uality of the genre from the original pulps he also insisted that heroes be predominantly cigar chewing competent guys He was a notorious racist so the competent guys would be white as well Harrison skewers the Campbellian hero type by making Chuck and Jerry absurdly over the top geniuses but with an underlying pettiness which becomes apparent as John proves to be Las alas de la mariposa eually competent if not so Sally also chafes against being constantly sidelined and ignoredxcept when being menaced by aliens or when food needs to be prepared but she gets to rebel at the very Whence the Black Irish of Jamaica? end The relationship of Chuck and Jerry as guys is also shown to be rather intense Star Smashers was first published in 1973 so the Golden Age of Pulps and Campbell would have been in the recent memory of people reading it It s worth noting that the Galaxy Ranger s spaceship a converted Boeing 747 had its first commercial flight in 1970 So it was still groundbreaking aerial technology when this book was written as opposed to being the old workhorse aircraft of today This perhaps sums up the current problem of Star Smashers as a satire the works andra it is satirising have almost vanished Virtually no one reads Doc Smith any and the Pulp ra primarily lives on in film Star Wars but also the Super Hero genre Guardians of the Galaxy would be the most obvious homage to the Pulp and Golden Age SF sensibilities out today The late Harry Harrison died 2012 was a giant of the SF genre in his own right and he out by using satire in his classic works such as the Stainless Steel Rat series He also wrote humorous one such as The Technicolor Time Machine which is much better than Star Smashers Harrison is deliberately writing badly in Star Smashers to satirise the Pulp style While it is certainly ntertaining for a while it begins to drag on the reader despite the book being very short less than 200 pages Star Smashers works best for contemporary readers if you have an awareness of the ra it is satirising or. Workshed they decide to sneak it aboard their football team's airplane as a prank The boyish plan backfires however and the boys find themselves along with their crush Sally and the seemingly loveable school caretaker Old John ,

If your taste xtends to xtreme silliness It s rare that you read
the first sentence 
first sentence realize that this book is going to be trouble And you finish the first page and realize that you are going to hate this book And you thumb randomly through the contents and whatever happens to catch your ye makes you ven annoyedAnd then you put it down I got into Harry Harrison because of the Deathword and the Slippery Jim diGriz stories the Stainless Steel Rat This was the payoff Gawd he must have had fun writing this The Pleasantville Eagle Cheddite The Hardy Boys on a believeable level I had seen so much of this novel in other works but I madly giggled all the way through Originally published on my blog here in March 2001As spoofs go this must rank as one of the most outrageous 2001As spoofs go this must rank as one of the most outrageous written Like many science fiction fans I have a considerable affection for the space operas of writers likeEEDoc Smith but I would have to admit that they are poorly written sexist and sometimes usually unconsciously racist They succeed because of their imagination things like galaxy destroying weapons ven though written at a time when Mars was as far as most science fiction was willing to travelThe parodistic relationship with Smith in particular is very clear at the start which is based Period Power extremely closely on his first novel Skylark Two college boys are playing with a particle accelerator and some cheddar cheese when they discover a portable space warp They set off with this in a Jumbo Jet with their girlfriend who can t decide which of them she prefers and school janitor and Communist spy John the token black characterThe story is funny in its own right as well as being a merciless parody of the shortcomings of the genre It also possesses a wonderful twist at thend which like many of the jokes would be spoilt by repetition Does for classic space opera what Team America World Police does for Thunderbirds Though I m sorry to say there s not uite as much gratuitous sex As a longtime fan of the Lensman series by E E Doc Smith how could I NOT love Star Smashers It s as clever a spoof as anything by the Zucker brothers Fun goofy and full of the best faux drama you ll Biblical Standard for Evangelists ever findIf you want a rollicking good space adventure with iron jawed heroes damsels in distressvil aliens and Until Again epic scope all done with tongue firmlynsconced in cheekthis one s for you This is such a fun read Harrison is one of those writers who can cover a lot of material in a handful of sentences He s also got a sharp sense of wit witness his satirical take on Cold War politics gender relations and sexuality in this slim adventure Moreover Harrison doesn t hesitate to mess with convention and take his story in directions that some would consider controversial You will never guess where the characters take their lives by the story s ndThis is the kind of writing that keeps me interested in lives by the story s ndThis is the kind of writing that keeps me interested in fiction The massive multi book stories that contemporary writers offer today may look Ebeles Favourite epic but their size is too daunting a writer has to be incredible to hold my interest that long and much of the prose that Incounter is passable at best Harrison is someone who can fit a number of ideas in a fraction of the pages and make you laugh His is a talent that I recommend to any reader. Urtling through the solar system towards Titan an icy moon of Saturn inhabited by hideous ice creatures Titan and the 20th century are only suare one as the foursome becomes mbroiled in a vast intergalactic century jumping battl.

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Comic SF parody will appeal to fans of Douglas Adams and things like Kilgore Trout s of the Half Shell We of Douglas Adams things like Kilgore Trout s Venus of the Half Shell We three university students 2 genius guys and the girl they both fancy who has a BA in Home Economics they invent a new substance called Cheddite when a student prank substitutes cheese for the lement they were supposed to be bombarding it gets weaponised and produces a device that can basically teleport things During an xperiment which gets ruined by the intervention of a Russian agent the four ge A spoof of Campbellian SF it is funny once Google John W Campbell a very influential SF writereditor in the 50 s 60 s Earth men were smart courageous WASPs aliens were dumb cowardly BEMs wanted our women Earthman ingenuity courage beat the BEMs EVERY time Now before anyone accuses me of missing the point here I get that this book is satire You can I guess accuse me of not having a sense of humor because I didn t think it was terribly funny Harrison seems to have decided to parody the style of macho sci fi he grew up with and to deliberately write the worst book he could manage to write in the process In fairness the worst book he could write is still better than the write in the process In fairness the worst book he could write is still better than the most authors ver manageThe book is about a couple of college jocks who also happen to be scientific geniuses that stumble across the secret to faster than light travel and begin an adventure across the galaxy in a 747 their school uses to transport the football team They fight various bug Nights of the Round Table eyed monsters and intergalactic threats with the nature of the uest becoming increasingly improbable atach new development Along with them comes the school s black janitor who is a Communist spy at the outset but converts to Americanism along the way and a shapely cheerleader who spends a lot of time in the galley fixing sandwiches If that description strikes you as funny have at it but to me it s sort of like Introduction to Modern Information Retrieval expecting people to see the funny side ofxactly what most sci fi really was like not terribly long ago and what certain sad puppies would like to see it become again This book actually redeemed itself for me a little at the When Miss Gangster Meets Her Match end where Harrison sticks his finger in theye of anyone who had missed the satire and actually njoyed all the macho silliness beforehand Would that Robert Heinlein had done the same with Starship Troopers Come on Jerry the accumulators are crackling with barely restrained power Chuck shouted Deliberately ridiculous dialogue sets the scene for Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers Harry Harrison s classic spoof on Pulp ra science fiction Two college students Chuck and Jerry accidentally discover a powerful new substance made out of cheddar cheese cheddite and use it to build a space ship out of a 747 which just happens to be available Along with their black friend and former Communist spy John and their love interest Sally who mainly screams faints and cooks the omni competent heroes both Chuck and Jerry are simultaneously brilliant True Paradise engineers scientists and rugged outdoorsmen meet up and fight with alien racesvery one of which has fortunately listened to your radio broadcasts and learned fluent English and set up the Galaxy Rangers modelled on the Texas Rangers which apparently no one other than Earthmen could possibly hav. The wild galaxy hopping adventures of brash young scientists Jerry Courtenay and Chuck van Chider are at the core of this classic space opera When the two college students develop a faster than light space drive in their homemade. ,
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