mary_j_59: (mug)
Ah, technobabble! You’re happily watching some science fiction show or movie, and some character comes out with a string of incomprehensible syllables. For example:

“Captain, the phase inverters have reached 2000 degrees kelvin. If we don’t reverse their polarities, they will implode!” (* Please note: I made up that example on the fly. I think it’s nonsense even for technobabble.)

“Huh?” you say to yourself. Then, if the writers have done their job, you’ll either say to yourself, “Oh, I see. Their engine is overheating, and they need coolant,” or else you’ll just ignore the technobabble and focus on the story. If, however, the writers have not done their job, you will get annoyed.

Of course, each reader, writer, and viewer has a different tolerance for technobabble, and a different idea of what might make it especially good, or especially bad. I’d guess that, for most of us, it’s usually especially bad. Can there be a way to write it well?

I think there might be. I’m going to preface this by saying I have no desire to feed the flames of the Star Trek versus Star Wars arguments. I like them both. To be absolutely accurate, I am a passionate Niner, love the original Trek, like Next Generation, and also like the first three Star Wars movies. It’s quite possible to love both Trek and Star Wars. It’s also quite possible to get annoyed by technobabble in both franchises!Read more... )
mary_j_59: (portrait)
So - having watched the show in its entirety, my sister (the lovely Deirdrea - deirdrej on livejournal) and I are watching episodes here and there, mostly from the fifth season. Among those we saw recently were "Dr. Bashir, I presume" and "The Begotten". And-

I really love Kukalaka! And here is why. It isn't childishness that makes Dr. Bashir hang on to him; at least, not entirely. Little Jules stitched that bear together at the age of 6, as a small, slow, differently abled child. Kukalaka is concrete proof to the good doctor that the child he was is the person he is today. He's still stubborn, determined, capable, and a healer, just as he was as a little boy. The best parts of him were things he already had long before anyone "fixed" him.

And then there's the lovely grandfather/father/child dynamic in "The Begotten". Warning - some spoilers ahead!Read more... )
mary_j_59: (Default)
Jongibbs linked to this one, and I found it very enlightening - I understood, after reading it, exactly how and why I'd been disappointed by certain books. It's also something to watch out for as we attempt to tell our own stories! Peadarog kindly gave me permission to link to his post, so here it is:
mary_j_59: (Default)
Just a brief ramble on two subjects:
1. Why Harry Potter is like Titanic, and why both of them annoy me, inspired by a conversation with Darkthirty.

2. Why Snape isn't weak, inspired by reading Mike-Smith, who thinks he is.

3. Finally, my problem with superheroes. Inspired by the conversation above.Read more... )
mary_j_59: (Default)
Some more thoughts on the recent "Trek", among other things. An informal essay, about 3,000 words long. Read more... )
mary_j_59: (Default)
Author mary-j-59
Title Narnia and Hogwarts
Genre Informal essay, g-rated, about 2,800 words
Summary Is Rowling really the C.S. Lewis of this age, as some have claimed? why or why not?
Read more... )


mary_j_59: (Default)

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