Has Del-Rey Made A Serious Mistake?

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Grand Admiral Wettengel, Oct 16, 2000.

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  1. aleja Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 3
    *sniff sniff* I think cmulligan is trying to set something aflame...too bad I just checked the batteries in my smoke detector.

    I bet the serfs who accompanied the Knights of the Crusades knew why they were in the Holy Land and for what cause -- make you feel any better?

    As for being bored -- aside from the fact that you apparently got struck by the same thing that Mel Gibson is hit by in "What Women Want" and can now read minds :rolleyes (Anyone else miss the UBB board and the icons?!) I'll let you in a little secret. The only thing I find fascinating is the lengths to which people defend this generic, been done a thousand times before, totally inappropriate storyline for this particular fictional universe.

    That's what keeps me interested -- every time I think I've found the depth to which certain people can sink, they continue to amaze and stun me. Quite the attention getter.

    Keep it coming and I assure you I'll stay interested!

    :-D
  2. Santee Ordrin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 9, 1998
    star 6
    aleja, just to clear up a basic confusion that you seem to have over the crusades.

    The basic conscript during that time knew basically one thing. He was fighting for his god, to free the "infidels". He had no knowledge of what everyone else was doing. Only those within his small group. the only ones who might have known anything were the Knights, and even they didn't have a full picture. Somewhat like the YV have here. No true full picture. Even the Rogue commanders didn't have the full picture. It is usually only those high up in command who have the most complete picture.

    The initial invasion as written by RAS, was a rogue operation. and as such we wouldn't be given the full picture as well.
  3. aleja Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 3
    Thanks, Santee, for making my point for me :)

    Even the lowliest conscript had an idea of why he was there and for what cause! Maybe not the full picture, but they got the recruitment pitch down perfectly.

    They were answering the call of Pope Urban II, who on November 27, 1095 gave a speech at Clermont, France exhorting true Christians to help the Byzantines defend their land against attackers of another faith. Now, granted, this was not the whole truth - physical control of the resources, political control of the populace, fear of Islam becoming a dominant religion, racism, etc. all played a part. But this is what got men of ALL ranks to start heading east - in fact, Urban's speech was a little too successful as far too many set out without being organized. In fact, some feel that what Urban really wanted was to lead a band of Western nobleman under Papal authority east, which would have helped his position in the ongoing Investiture Controvery with the Holy Roman Empire -- the last thing he seemed to want was waves of European peasants heading off to the Holy Land.

    Here's some of the text of Fulcher of Chartres's account of Pope Urban's speech (there are several versions):

    "Although, O sons of God, you have promised more firmly than ever to keep the peace among yourselves and to preserve the rights of the church, there remains still an important work for you to do. Freshly quickened by the divine correction, you must apply the strength of your righteousness to another matter which concerns you as well as God. For your brethren who live in the east are in urgent need of your help, and you must hasten to give them the aid which has often been promised them. For, as the most of you have heard, the Turks and Arabs have attacked them and have conquered the territory of Romania [the Greek empire] as far west as the shore of the Mediterranean and the Hellespont, which is called the Arm of St. George. They have occupied more and more of the lands of those Christians, and have overcome them in seven battles. They have killed and captured many, and have destroyed the churches and devastated the empire. If you permit them to continue thus for awhile with impurity, the faithful of God will be much more widely attacked by them. On this account I, or rather the Lord, beseech you as Christ's heralds to publish this everywhere and to persuade all people of whatever rank, foot-soldiers and knights, poor and rich, to carry aid promptly to those Christians and to destroy that vile race from the lands of our friends. I say this to those who are present, it meant also for those who are absent. Moreover, Christ commands it.

    All who die by the way, whether by land or by sea, or in battle against the pagans, shall have immediate remission of sins. This I grant them through the power of God with which I am invested."

    But note that Urban's speech has far more information (and reasons for attack) than the YV: Not only are the crusaders out to make the land safe from infidels, they are DEFENDING their land from attackers; and they are promised remission of sins for their efforts.

    But all VP gave us were vague references to "unworthy infidels" and war god worship, with battle scars being a mark of honor. No political reasons, no real religious reasons, nothing that made the Vong stand out from any other myriad of standard big mean evil SF aliens.

    So the lowliest Crusader had far more to go on than the average VP reader :)
  4. Silencer-7 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 25, 1999
    star 3
    It's like a history lesson in here :)
  5. Stilgar Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 18, 1998
    star 1
    Hello kids ;)

    I must clear up one "bold faced lie" that seems to have been accepted by everyone. Somone posted that moons can fall - and now everyone seems to take it as fact that what happened in VP is correct. Well... it is not as far as I can tell.

    Using the word "fall" gives the wrong impression (maybe deliberately so :) ). A far more accurate phrase would be to say "a moon can spiral SLOWLY onto a planet". We are talking here a natural process that would take millions and more years.

    To move a large moon out of its orbit would take HUGE amounts of energy and should be VERY EASY to detect, and there should be more than enough time evacuate at least those who had ships to get off on. Frankly dropping a moon on a planet would involve so much energy that there are many easier ways of destroying the planet. The whole thing is as difficult as moving planets.

    Furthermore, large moons like Earth has are RARE. And I am under the impression that they are being constantly dropped on planets in NJO.
  6. cmulligan01 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 18, 1998
    star 3
    Whether you believe it or not I'm not trying to start anything. I know that probably seems doubtful as I'm well aware of my history here and in this area of SW discussion. At this point I can't change anybody's minds by saying where I stand now.

    Several of you jumped to a conclusion that I didn't have that much in mind, I knew it was possible but didn't dwell on it, when I wrote my bit comparing the YV invasion to a holy war. I wasn't just think of the Christian crusades with that. aleja provided a good view from one side. I don't think those Crusades are all that very much similar to the YV invasion. I was probably thinking too broadly when I said a holy war because I don't know some of the other situation well enough to render an educated opinion therefore I won't submit one.

    As far as people sinking to new limits, for myself I didn't think I sank any lower. Right now given where I am I probably wouldn't notice and if I did it likely wouldn't mean much.

    aleja, there are still many possible explanations though I think that is one of your problems when it comes to discussing detailed (or semi-detailed) points like this with VP. The type of speech you referenced (I'm not sure about saying quoting because as you said there are different versions and time has had it's effect) could have been given prior to VP. It could have been given a couple of generation before the current invaders. Then again it could not have happened. Unless this issue is specifically taken on in a future NJO (or NJO related book) I think we probably won't ever officially now what type of prep and propoganda was given to the warriors.
  7. aleja Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 3
    cmulligan --

    " I think we probably won't ever officially now what type of prep and propoganda was given to the warriors."

    And that's my point :) I find it hard to buy into a race of big mean ugly aliens whose philosophy is withheld from the readers for no apparent reason. That makes the Vong the equivalent of the ID4 aliens or the Starship Troopers aliens or the War of the World aliens - just your generic evil conquering alien race. You're welcome to feel that the amount of information is just right :)

    Sorry for coming down a bit hard on you - I'm so used to being flamed whenever my name pops up regardless of what I actually wrote that I can be rather quick on trigger myself now.

    Suffice to say that my participation in the forum is pretty much just to see to what new lows certain people reach - I find it fascinating - but you weren't on the list :)
  8. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Thanks for the various responses to the Q's I threw in my last post here. I didn't have a prefixed answer in mind, the Q's were quite genuine.

    I'm not out to restart the thread, (my mind is now fairly clear on the topics covered here) just saying I appreciate the responses.

    Regards

    Jedi Ben
  9. Bror Jace Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 3
    Jedi Ben, you WERE right that my comment about Star Wars following trends instead of starting them referred to one of your previous posts.

    Also you said something that needs repeating for emphasis:

    "... we live in a world where franchise-building/continuing is more important than storytelling and SW has fallen victim to this ..."

    Bingo! You put your finger right on it. I always thought something like Star Wars could stay above this but alas, it has not. It has become another soulless comercial property.

    If that's the way it's going to be, it's sad and it's asking too much for fans to be eternally excited over someting that's just another commercial product in a polluted sea of consumerism.
  10. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Sad ain't it? I was hoping SW could avoid becoming subject to the plague of franchising.

    For 8 years it succeeded, with Ep 1 it got infected and the battle has been raging since.

    I do like to stress that SW is far from alone in being infected, Star Trek was perhaps the first terminal case. Babylon 5, despite the vows of its creator, became a franchise with said creator transfrming it so.

    And as of late it looks like Buffy is going the same way with the cross-linking of Buffy and Angel.

    A pity. Although franchising is not in itself bad, it's only when franchising becomes subordinate to making money the rot sets in. Which may describe the last 2-3 years of SW merchandise quite nicely.

    Regards

    Jedi Ben
  11. Podkayne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2000
    star 1
    Jedi Ben, you hit the nail on the head when you said "For 8 years it succeeded, with Ep 1 it got infected and the battle has been raging since."

    I felt that Ep 1 was completely a commercial venture with no attention paid to plot and execution.

    The NJO strikes me the same way.

  12. Kalindren Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Dec 16, 2000
    Not paying attention to plot & execution is exactly the problem with NJO. Take the DT duology for example. Is it really realistic that the Empire would assist the NR at Ithor and then go off and sulk?

    Is it realistic that the Hapes Consortium would do the same in AOC?

    Del Rey seems to be bringing every major power group introduced since the original films back for one or two books and then shuffling them offstage. What will we see next, the Corporate Sector openingup a second front? The Ssi-Ruuvi joining the YV in attacking Coruscant?

    Let's see some proper plotting and followup in the NJO. Let's see the Empire and the Chiss teaming up to open a second front. In short, let's use the established galactic groups as an integral part of the series, not as the NR's ally of the month that gets it's legs cut out from under it.

    Sorry for my rant, but I would have loved to read a duology by Zahn or Stackpole about Pellaeon's defence of the Empire from the YV.
  13. Grand Admiral Wettengel Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 10, 2000
    star 4
    It is annoying having other galactic powers come in for a book or two and then disappear completely.

    Remember in Ruin when Pellaeon was telling Leia that the Empire has the same problems as the NR? Did we see any of these problems? No. And I also find it inexplicable that the Empire would just book and we wouldn't hear anything from them. Pellaeon isn't one to sit back on the defensive.

    And with what happened to the Hapans ... I just really think that was a cheap way to get them out of the picture.

    I'd do anything to get a book or two from Pellaeon's POV so we can see what one of the most interesting characters in the EU has been up to vis-a-vis dealing with the Vong.

    The large numbers of authors working on this series concern me because we'll find characters appearing then disappearing and interesting plot threads possibly being totally dropped as the next author wants to leave his own stamp on the EU with one or several new characters--characters who would probably only disappear again. For an example of this, where'd Kre'Fey disappear to?
  14. Stilgar Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 18, 1998
    star 1
    Hmm... no one wants to "talk" to me anymore, so I will try to ask some hard questions to get things going.

    We all complain (myself included) about how bad NJO has become - the question becomes: IS NJO SALVAGABLE? OR IS IT ALREADY BEYOND REPAIR, AND IT WOULD BE BETTER TO WRAP UP IT UP AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE AND START WITH AN ENTIRELY NEW IDEA FOR SW NOVELS? And if things are as bad as to damage our enjoyment of the EU, WHY DO SOME PEOPLE WHO COMPLAIN KEEP ON READING?

    Please keep in mind when answering this the realities of publishing. Meaning that perhaps with an enormous effort NJO could be theoretically improved, but don't hold your breath for this to happen.

    Finally, if NJO was to be replaced, how would you end it quickly and what would you replace it with? Or waht would you agument it with? - my idea is to do a trilogy of Chewbacca's adventures (sort of like Han's trilogy we already have) set in a timeframe different to NJO, irrespective of whether NJO continues or not. CAN SW EU USE MORE NOVELS THAN IT CURRENTLY CAN GET IN NJO?
  15. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    OK, Stilgar's Q's:

    1. IS NJO SALVAGABLE?

    BP has shown that it is.

    2. OR IS IT ALREADY BEYOND REPAIR?

    Had DR gone on as they had done it may have become so but with BP's publication and the news there will be only 2 books bridging the gap to HB3, I think we may see the coherence of story that has been lacking in NJO Year 1.

    3. IT WOULD BE BETTER TO WRAP UP IT UP AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE AND START WITH AN ENTIRELY NEW IDEA FOR SW NOVELS?

    The problem is Zahn's HOT series kille any civil war ideas. This leaves two options: the Unknown Regions and Extra-Galactic. The problem of both is that an external war has to be created. It is no longer sufficient to have a bunch of big bad aliens turn up on a flimsy pretext, for evidence see B5 and DSN.
    Given this I would not continue the line beyond VOTF. Why? There is nothing left:

    Rise Of The Empire (eps 1-3), Fall Of The Empire (Eps 4-6), Galactic Civil War And The Restoration Of The Jedi (Bantam line). In this story the Republic and Jedi are destroyed by the Sith and rising Empire, a rebellion begins against the regime that succeeds enough to form an opposing government. Cue 15 year civil war during which the Jedi are restored. Peace is made with the Imperial Remnant, the End.

    The Jedi Council you say? Luke has talked to those who remeber it and they say it became defunct and useless, so why revive it?

    4. And if things are as bad as to damage our enjoyment of the EU, WHY DO SOME PEOPLE WHO COMPLAIN KEEP ON READING?

    For now I want to see the Council get their just desserts as they will in HB3, I want to know that it is Anakin taking a hand in events in BP, I want to see the Vong get a kicking and I'd like to know how they're going to follow up the cliffhanger of BP, thus far EOV:C sounds good.

    As for why we are continuing to read? We like the story that we really don't want to abandon it unless absolutely necessary. Quite a few Wheel Of Time fans do the same thing for that matter.

    Regards

    Jedi Ben
  16. Grand Admiral Wettengel Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 10, 2000
    star 4
    Stilgar,

    The "falling" moon has already been discussed quite a bit in previous threads; I believe that you would find the "Why Does NJO Suck" thread to be interesting reading. I bring up the points that you did.

    NJO certainly is salvageable as BP has shown us.

    However, the question to ask is what are the elements of BP that lend the view that the NJO is salvageable?
  17. Bror Jace Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 3
    I don't think "Balance Point" salvaged the NJO. It was merely one good book in a poorly thought-out series. I enjoyed it but I still don't like the NJO.

    Kalindren, good points. Some of us have been saying things like that for over a year now.
  18. Chewbacca of Kashyyyk Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 17, 1999
    star 3
    CoK will answer your question!!

    Is the NJO salvagable?????

    Absolutely. CoK has some serious problems with the NJO so far, but everything is salvagable.

    What needs to happen first is that the partnership that has created the NJO must recognize that theire are problems with the series so far. Once that is done, they can easily sove some of them. Balance Point was a good start. CoK hopes that they continue improving the series.
  19. LianaMara Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 2000
    star 4
    What is the whole thing w/ the Kyp followers wanting vengence? Jedi are supposed to be defender of peace, not warriors avenging close friends deaths. Luke needs to get the Jedis united, instead of two groups arguing over ways to deal w/ the Yuuzhan Vong problem.

    Force be w/ ya!

    Liana
  20. aleja Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 3
    IS THE NJO SALVAGABLE?

    Sure. Get rid of the Vong. And focus on the title: The NEW Jedi Order.

    So far, all I've seen is bunch of Jedi running around like the proverbial headless chicken, without rhyme or reason.
  21. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Good reminder of what the title of NJO actually refers to, courtesy of Aleja.

    We had better see some overt indication of what the NEW jedi order is gong to be in HB3 or else the title is going to look irrelevant. Add a couple of covert, subtle hints in Keyes' books and we have a good way of transforming the story line.

    As to the Vong, yep remove these catalysts with the utmost speed, they are not characters, even Tsavong Lah is little more than a hypocritical bully.

    May be it is time for Luke to start pulling rank with the Jedi by reminding them of just who decked Darth Vader and as a result they will listen and heed what he says! Of course I've been wanting Luke to cut loose for ages, by becoming the leader he always could be, much as I'd like to see Leia become a Jedi, no matter her past.

    Regards

    Jedi Ben
  22. Chewbacca of Kashyyyk Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 17, 1999
    star 3
    CoK is not so sure that the Vong need to leave in order for the NJO to become agreat series. Solid stories with strong characters is always a recipe for success.

    2 ideas, more insight into the Vong and what makes them tick. We are getting that slowly.

    And also focus on fewer characetrs and develop them. Once they are developed in the context of setting, add more characters then.

    That was a major problem with VP for me. It was character soup. Too many charcaters intermixed with very little motive.

    So far, Zahn is one of the few authors that was able to handle a mass load of charcaters while still weaving a good story. He did this well in the duology.
  23. aleja Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 23, 1999
    star 3
    I wonder if we will ever see again books with the plot and thematic density of the Hand of Thrawn books? *sigh*

    Oh well. :)

    CoK - I hope the Vong can be turned into good villians. But right now all I see are a bunch of sadomasochistic cliches - and I don't think villians of this sort are well suited to the Star Wars fantasy/high adventure/old fashioned movie serial kind of universe. Ming may have been Merciless but he had his fun moments (and his reasons; after all, Flash Gordon was an uninvited visitor to HIS world).

    But that's just me :)
  24. Bror Jace Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 1999
    star 3
    I can't see how the Vong can be made into acceptable or worthy villains. The situation reminds me of that old saying: "You never get a second chance at a first impression."

    Our first impression of them was given to us by someone who new next to nothing about the Star Wars EU.

    It's time to cut the lines and minimize the losses.
  25. Nimowehy_Van_Till Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 15, 2000
    star 1
    Personally I'd prefer the whole thing to be an equal mix of old and new generation, and not just focus on the Solo kids, but the whole conglomerate of heroes. the NJO has done that so far which is good.

    but face it, we aint gonna be seein' Luke Leia Han and Mara after this series is over so we may as well get the most of them while we still can.
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