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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later.Support Elizabeth on Patreon.

13 Comments

  1. Matthew Celestis
    June 24, 2011 @ 4:06 am

    I can't believe you have never heard that Peter Sarstedt song.

    I love the way the story presents Eldred and Radnor as too men with a long history. It even ends with them returning to old arguments.

    In the new series, you just don't get minor characters being developed in that way.

    Reply

  2. The Lord of Ábrocen Landmearca
    June 24, 2011 @ 6:17 am

    I suppose I've never presumed terraforming to be imperialistic because in my own writings other planets simply fail to be inhabited to a degree significant to sentient life. I recently got into a large argument on a blog called Mightygodkig, wherein a poster argued that the movie Aliens was a lesson in anti-imperialism- the foreigners on the planet come under attack from the natives and ultimately lose. But I find this argument to be flawed, mainly because the Aliens aren't natives of the planet. If you remember the first film, they find the eggs in a crashed starship wherein, long before, an chestbustered had killed the er, alien pilot and caused the ship to crash land. Once on LV-426, the Aliens make no attempts to colonize, and I don't think they can. They just sit in their eggs and wait for a a host to come along and infect and spread- which happens in Alien and, much later, Aliens. The Aliens aren't natives. And they're "savage" in the bluntest way possible. It isn't a case that we're superior-feeling humans who don't consider their ways equivalent to ours, it's that the Aliens have no culture,, they just slaughter. That's not to say that slaughtering can't be cultural (Klingons!), but to ahve culture, from my understanding, you need to at least make a cave painting about everyone you killed. You need to prove a larger capacity for thought beyond "hunt and breed".

    That being said, I will totally accept arguments that Aliens is anti-corporatist, which makes far more sense for eighties flicker, and of course, the whole sexual aspects of the Alien life-cycle can and has filled books. But I'm curious as to your opinion- are the non-native, non colonizing Alien eggs in a crashed spaceship under imperialist threat from the Earth colonists who showed up to planet that doesn't support life without artificial effort?

    Reply

  3. Wm Keith
    June 24, 2011 @ 9:11 pm

    Two fairly unrelated points.

    1. Manifest Destiny vs White Man's Burden

    MD is the media-driven desire to have an empire (so, that puts the imperial yearning back to c19).

    WMB is a justification for already having an empire (one which had been acquired over centuries in an extremely unplanned [i.e. market-driven] fashion).

    WMB is highly personal, based as it is on Rudyard Kipling's personal unhappiness at being fully at home neither in England nor India, and feeling torn between the two (further examples: Kim, Mogwli. It gives Kipling a reason for his existence.

    2. Castro a bad guy? Understandable, coming from a resident of Florida, and I'm not saying it's wrong. It's certainly not a sentiment which you'll find expressed by many residents of modern Britain, however.

    A romantic, cigar-smoking nationalist hero who staved off the threat of invasion across the narrow sea? The Castro legend collides with the Winston Churchill legend and rubs off some of his paintwork. Plus he founded a National Health Service.

    Reply

  4. Matthew Celestis
    June 25, 2011 @ 12:37 am

    Castro's regime also locks people up for years just for speaking their minds. He's a bad guy alright.

    Reply

  5. Elizabeth Sandifer
    June 25, 2011 @ 3:45 am

    I object to being called a Floridian far more than I object to any praise of Castro. 🙂

    Reply

  6. Wm Keith
    June 26, 2011 @ 12:41 pm

    Apologies, then, for my gratuitous use of the F-word.

    Reply

  7. landru
    July 11, 2011 @ 11:11 am

    I see the T-MAT organization as an equivalent to to Apple … once we digitize all the information in the world, what happens if it crashes? We are screwed. Keep your books. Don't discard those little discs and tapes. You might need them again.

    I like this story. It was the first Troughton story I ever saw (again, a convention.) It has a really great feeling of both the epic and the claustrophobic. Equally funny (the rocket sequence … more bubbles) and brutal (lot of dead bodies.)

    The discarded technology idea is an interesting one. Let's not forget the lesson of Survivors (not that crap remake): what if things break down? Could you survive?

    Reply

  8. landru
    July 11, 2011 @ 11:12 am

    P.S. – you can download my two books from itunes … haha.

    Reply

  9. Don Zachary
    July 15, 2011 @ 2:46 am

    ‘In other news, Ian Paisley is arrested for political demonstrations in Ireland and jailed for three months, one of the more radical moments in his long political career’

    Oh no he wasn’t!

    (British panto tradition)

    He was arrested for a counter-demonstration against a civil rights demo in Northern Ireland. What Paisley would call Ulster and his opposite numbers in Sinn Fein would call the North of Ireland. It’s a separate country from the Republic of Ireland, which Paisley fought to keep and his opposites fought to change. But now they’re in all government together under the neutral name of Northern Ireland even when they still use the separatist terminology to each other.

    If it WAS in Ireland, it wouldn’t have happened – because Catholics had all the civil rights there he was demonstrating to stop them getting. So it was one of the more conservative moments of his long career. And civil rights that were denied to the people of Ireland at the time were the sort he’d deny to Protestants in Northern Ireland too: ‘Save Ulster From Sodomy!’

    I know to Americans it’s all the same, like Wales is in England and Holland is all of the Netherlands and all, but to people over here that’s irritating.

    And OK, you’ve replied to some of my space / empire points before I’ve made them. Cool!

    Sniggers at comment about how the British love Castro. Nah, mate. Not the vociferous hate of Florida, but Brits never big on communist tyrants, just as much as never big on hard right messianism. We like fuzzy warm middleoftheroadism and we like being able to speak our minds and take the piss out of govt as much as we love the NHS. That’s not Castro. And he’s a massive gaybasher. Ironically for San Francisco.

    Reply

  10. 7a1abfde-af0e-11e0-b72c-000bcdcb5194
    July 17, 2011 @ 10:02 am

    Castro and Churchill are way too similar for my taste.

    Reply

  11. 7a1abfde-af0e-11e0-b72c-000bcdcb5194
    July 17, 2011 @ 2:07 pm

    Re the space program: I think there's a pretty clear replacement emerging; it just has nothing to do with NASA.

    Reply

  12. Henry R. Kujawa
    August 9, 2012 @ 10:30 am

    The Lord Of…:
    "Once on LV-426, the Aliens make no attempts to colonize, and I don't think they can. They just sit in their eggs and wait for a a host to come along and infect and spread- which happens in Alien and, much later, Aliens. The Aliens aren't natives. And they're "savage" in the bluntest way possible. It isn't a case that we're superior-feeling humans who don't consider their ways equivalent to ours, it's that the Aliens have no culture,, they just slaughter."

    If I understand it right (and if it's considered "canon"), according to the 5th film in the series– the controversial "ALIENS VS. PREDATORS"– the Aliens were actually genetically engineered and created, in the first place, just so the Predators would have something to hunt & kill. Any planet where they got out of control, they'd just set off a nuke and destroy everything. But at some point, they got loose, and the film "ALIEN" and its sequels were the result.

    I note how the ending of the film "ALIEN RESSURECTION" somewhat mirrors "Terrof of the Vervoids" (the threat to all life on Earth if even ONE of them makes it here), but moreso, the excrutiatingly FUN Japanese flick, "THE GREEN SLIME", which parallels so much of the ALIENS films, but on a much cheaper budget, and in a much more exciting, and "FUN!" way. (Given a choice between "ALIEN" and "THE GREEN SLIME", I'll take "THE GREEN SLIME" to watch anyway.)

    And speakin' of "green"… (heh)

    Don Zachary:
    "I know to Americans it’s all the same, like Wales is in England and Holland is all of the Netherlands and all, but to people over here that’s irritating."

    My Dad spent most of the 1970's & 80's playing music professionally on weekends to make extra money. And most of it was "ethnic Irish music" (reels, jigs, etc. the stuff most musicians he knew felt was "beneath them"– but they had "functions" almost every weekend, so to Dad, it was steady money). He described how the most common first question from people he met was, "So tell me, what COUNTY are ye from?" Because they could identify a person's county of origin by their accent. Some of these functions– he suspected– were raising money to fund the IRA. He never got into it, which was for the best.

    The funniest story he told was one night a woman walked up to their bandtand and told them, "You guys are playing the BEST Irish music I've ever heard!" Oh, the irony! Of the 3 guys in the band… one was a Scotsman… one was an Englishman (!!!!!)… and Dad was POLISH.

    Reply

  13. orfeo
    May 3, 2013 @ 4:53 pm

    There's a lot going right in the Seeds of Death. Good script (well, especially in the first couple of episodes, the ones that weren't redrafted by somebody else), good performances, interesting direction. But I agree with you there's something fundamentally problematic with the treatment of the Ice Warriors. The interesting thing about these creatures is that they are creatures rather than monsters, but this particular story tends to ignore that in favour of "they're invading, we don't need to explore why, we just need to kill them".

    Reply

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