When Star Wars exploded on movie screens in 1977, it elevated sci-fi out of the low-budget B-movie ghetto in a way that 2001: A Space Odyssey and Planet of the Apes had tried to do and didn’t quite achieve. While those two films had the spectacular visuals, humanist allegories, and deep thoughts about the meaning of man, they lacked the slam-bang action of a great 1940s Flash Gordon movie. Star Wars showed that people would go for big dumb fun, and the race was on for the next one. In the years that followed, many studios attempted to join the “Me Too” Chorus, with Star Trek grabbing the high-end market and the original Battlestar Galactica locking up the TV audience. The low end was filled with cheesy movies featuring clumsy alien make-up and iffy blue-screen effects. 30-odd years later, one movie stands above them all as the greatest film in the crowded “cheap Star Wars knockoff” genre: ‘Battle Beyond the Stars.’
Byron Preiss was a writer, compiler, editor and publisher of science fiction, fantasy, horror, and graphic novels. As a fan of those genres, as well as comics and pulp fiction, among other things, he tried to innovate ways to present and publish similar materials for a wider reading public – something he did throughout his life.
“I’m alone sitting with my broken glass / My four walls follow me through my past” I’m a big fan of Weimar Germany, so the fact that Babylon Berlin is …
We’re a little late, so no time for preamble – let’s get to it!
Remember when science was cool? I do.
I talk with my old friend Anne about her journey from writing online fan fiction to becoming a professional writer and editor.
This is a few days late, but I hope you’ll join me on a tour through some trades I read, some arcs I finished, and some prose books I found time to get through. So much fun!