Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Martian chronicles

It's unlikely I'll get to see John Carter (dubbed "Ishtar on Mars" by the NYT) before it leaves the theaters, so all I can do is read...

1. Here's Shadowplay, "The Face on the Barsoom Floor" (a pretty positive take on the film):

So, JOHN CARTER, a movie which is underperforming ENTIRELY, I submit, because some halfwit at Disney decided to omit the words “OF MARS” from their $250 million epic, thereby making it sound like MICHAEL CLAYTON or JACKIE BROWN. Low-key, in other words. The decision reeks of stupidity not just because it miss-sells the product (I guess the ads made most of us aware what kind of film this really was) but because it gave off a whiff of panic, and the press bloodhounds were all over that. So the movie emerged sheened in flop sweat, before a skeptical rather than an enthused populace.

2. Here's Geoff Ryman's excellent story "Film-makers of Mars," from his collection Paradise Tales (Small Beer Press) and now back up on the Tor site (where it originally appeared).

3. And here's Grognardia on one of the rarest TSR products—Warriors of Mars: The Warfare of Barsoom in Miniature:

If you've never heard of Warriors of Mars, let alone seen a copy, there's a good reason for that. There was, so far as I know, only one print run of the book before the Edgar Rice Burroughs estate contacted TSR about possible infringement of their rights. Rather than risk legal action, the book was never reprinted, making it today one of the rarest -- and most expensive -- TSR products. I've tried in vain to obtain a copy for myself at a reasonable (i.e. not multi-hundred dollar) price for several years now but to no avail. . . .

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