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Lit "Kodak Moments" of the EU

Discussion in 'Literature' started by GrandAdmiralJello , Dec 25, 2012.

  1. GrandAdmiralJello

    GrandAdmiralJello Comms Admin ❉ Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque star 10 Staff Member Administrator

    Nov 28, 2000
    This thread is partially inspired by the how do you read thread and partially by discussions I've had in the past regarding some old Bantam books that I haven't read in years. I'm a particularly visual reader, and as a result, I have setpieces built into my memory of certain books that persist longer than my actual memories of plot events. Some of them are more memorable and others, and some are so picturesque that they've stayed in my mind for years and years.

    I'm primarily talking about visuals here -- hence the Kodak Moments bit -- though narrative events may sometimes be difficult to separate from them. For instance, I am sure Ganner's last stand is memorable for a lot of folks: that's an action sequence with a lot of visual details as well. I actually can't remember any of the visuals of that scene so it won't be one of my submissions to this thread, but I'm sure that it would fit for others.

    So I'll start with two entries myself, one more visual/descriptive and one more narrative/action oriented. They're both from the X-wing series because I'm biased like that.

    Entry the First: Kirtan Loor's arrival on Imperial Center in XW: RS. It's probably my single favorite scene in the whole EU, and certainly one of the most memorable. Everything from the banter with the pilots (wondering if they'd shuttled people to their doom before), to the observations about lightning striking the planetary shields, to the Imperial Guards appearing to float because they're wearing black mourning at the edge of their robes. What makes this scene a Kodak Moment, though, is the scene where Loor asks the pilot how the shuttle could possibly land in such a small area -- even with its wings up -- and he realizes that it's because they're still two kilometers (I think?) up -- so the buildings, which he took to be slender minarets, are actually massive towers with hundreds of thousands of people on each level, or the streets which he took to be narrow tracks are actually massive boulevards, and then he realizes the sheer scale of a planet dedicated for the purpose of ruling a vast Galactic Empire. I can almost remember the exact wording used in that section. Ah, what a picturesque and patriotic scene!

    Entry the Second: In sheer contrast to the order and grandeur of the first one, this next scene, also on Coruscant, features Rebels. I'm thinking of the ersatz Rogue Squadron we see at the beginning of Allston's first foray into the EU, and that ridiculous little air-show that they choose to stage on their way to the landing platforms in order to prove who's the real Rogue Squadron. Both squadrons put their flight groups into a diamond pattern formation as they land, and start jockeying for position underneath one another in order to deny them space to descend. This is a very action-oriented scene, but what sticks out in my minds eye is the look of the classic red-painted X-wings on the fake Rogue Squadron versus the riot of colors and color schemes on the real Rogue Squadron and how that sort of mid-air precision must've looked both to the pilots involved as well as the audiences watching below.

    So there were a lot of other scenes I could think of -- in writing that second one, I was also reminded of the parade-like arrival on Adumar for instance, with the giant flatscreens and the like. But the thing that ties all these together is how evocative these relatively brief descriptions in the books are -- how the setting and scenary is such that the imagination takes over and does so in such a vivid fashion.

    Does anybody else have EU "Kodak Moments" to share?
  2. Darth_Kevin

    Darth_Kevin Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Aug 30, 2001
    My memory is apparently not as sharp as yours. The initial visualization of Thrawn comes to my mind as something that stuck. Also, my own mental visualization of what the Yuuzhan Vong look like.

    I like a lot of the visuals from Dark Empire...but those are technically already visual :)
  3. RC-1991

    RC-1991 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 2, 2009
    I can visualize the surrender scene in The Unifying Force perfectly- right down to the Alliance military band in the background playing the Throne Room theme from ANH.
  4. DarthApprentice

    DarthApprentice Jedi Knight star 1

    May 17, 2011
    Like GrandAdmiralJello, I also have a pretty visual mind's eye when it comes to reading. And, like he predicted, Ganner's last stand does stand out to me for the way that scen was described. As I was reading it, I could almost feel the blood spattering as Yuuzhan Vong bodies were being dropped left and right, and I could allmost see the mountain of bodies piling up. Maybe I'm a bit more morbid than some, but most of the scenes that really stick out for me are some of the deaths in the EU. Anakin's and Chewie's deaths also stick out as "Kodak Moments" for me. Anakin was very similart to Ganneer in this respect, and for Chewie, its like I was flow-walking at that moment(even though I had no idea what flow-walking was at that time). I could see him stretching out to hand Anakin to Han, see the Falcon bucking with the disturbances and Chewie being thrown by wind with boulders and rocks flying about. Could see The Falcon turning away at the last moment as a moon was hitting atmosphere, Chewie turning with fists held high at the moon. Maybe it was the emotions, as well, that make those scenes stick so vividly in my mind's eye....
  5. Gorefiend

    Gorefiend Chosen One star 5

    Oct 23, 2004
    NJO and X-Wing had way to many of these to name for me. Ah the good old days. [face_sigh]
  6. JackG

    JackG Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Aug 15, 2011
    I vividly can imagine the moment in the Senate in BFC when Leia overcomes her political challenges and declares war on the Yevetha; that was powerful. Furthermore, when Nom Anor appears before the NR Senate in SbS it's a "Kodak moment" for me.
    Hey, I just love my Senate scenes - we need more of them!!
  7. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 23, 1999
    There are a few for me, but one I remember - and I haven't read it in a long time so I have no idea if my visualization matches the description - is Ton Phanan's death.
  8. Gorefiend

    Gorefiend Chosen One star 5

    Oct 23, 2004

  9. Force Smuggler

    Force Smuggler Force Ghost star 7

    Sep 2, 2012
    I can visualize most of the Thrawn trilogy in my head. The ROTS novelization works as well. Specific scene? Mostly everything from the NJO. Nom Anor Senate senate scene, Leia's speech etc.
  10. Zorrixor

    Zorrixor Force Ghost star 6

    Sep 8, 2004
    There was this very special moment in FOTJ that I can still picture as if I read it yesterday in which Luke is running across this lake and leaps into the air to pass over this aquatic predator. Very visual stuff that jump.
  11. Jedi Ben

    Jedi Ben Chosen One star 7

    Jul 19, 1999
    For all I'm not a fan of it, 2 NJO scenes jump out:

    Following the devastation of Ithor, the destruction of the worldship responsible by 12 Star Destroyers in Dark Tide II: Ruin.

    Planetary bombardment unleashed upon the Vong by the Lusankya in Enemy Lines I: Rebel Stand.

    (Wish they'd been more of this utter kicking of Vong backside shown in NJO.)
    Zeta1127 likes this.
  12. kataja

    kataja Jedi Master star 4

    May 4, 2007
    While I love good illustrations, I sometimes have the problem that they overpower my own visualizations... at least when I think back on those scenes, as now. I need to enter through re-reading to get my own back :p But two things I strongly visualize is the propostrous picture of Gamorreans trying to t wear storntrooper uniform (CotJ) and Luke standing on one hand at the Jedi Academy with younger students gathered around him. (TNR) Oh, and then Mara in a kitchen in SBS. [face_devil]

    Also, two other scenes that might be so strong more for the gentle emotion in them than the actual visuality, but that I still retunr to again and again in my mind's eye, is when Luke in TTT upon seeing Leia& Han &twins together with Winter, Lando and Chewie, stops to reflect on these people being his family. The other is in Fury, I think, when Tenel Ka & court meet with Rogues and Luke + Jedi on Endor and Luke offers to rescue Allana.
  13. Rew

    Rew Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Dec 22, 2008
    Zonama Sekot arriving in the Coruscant/Yuuzhan'tar system in The Unifying Force and all the Vong freaking out.
    Zeta1127 likes this.
  14. TheCouncilHistorian

    TheCouncilHistorian Jedi Youngling

    Dec 10, 2012
    The fall of Coruscant in SBS was pretty amazing for me. Mostly because I didnt see it coming. I didnt think that Del Ray would allow the galactic capital to fall like that. Picturing millions of ships fleeing the world-city as the battle is waged above is so visceral (Moments like that would have made the prequels so much better. Instead Coruscant looked like it hadn't even seen war. Even 10 minutes after the battle in orbit.).

    COMPNOR Jedi Grand Master star 3

    Aug 19, 2003
    The Flamewind of the Oseon, with its raspberry reds, lemon yellows, and orange oranges as it twists across the constellation known as the Silly Rabbit.
    Rew and Force Smuggler like this.
  16. fistofan1

    fistofan1 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2009
    This scene came to my mind as well, before I even read it in your post. I'll never forget the first time Isard made an appearance in her strangely empty office with the gigantic window taking the place of a wall behind her. That image is especially striking when you compare it to Palpatine's similar office in ROTS. It really sells the fact that she is, for all intents and purposes, the Empress now.

    Another really strong image for me is the beginning of Jedi Search. I've always pictured a barren, hazy, dusty landscape for Coruscant in the opening chapter. I've always pictured Luke walking through a mangled Imperial Palace, with large chunks ripped out of it due to Palpatine's force storm in Dark Empire. The inclusion of the giant construction droids is a nice touch as well.
    General Immodet likes this.
  17. beccatoria

    beccatoria Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2006
    Okay, I know this isn't the point of the thread, and I PROMISE, tomorrow when I'm not sleep-deprived, I'll think up some sensible answers, but I read this and the only thing I could think of was the fact that with the rise of digital photography pushing Kodak out of business, our kids probably won't know what a Kodak moment is...

    Which is almost as sobering as the thought that they might not know what the EU is... :p
  18. cthugha

    cthugha Jedi Master star 3

    Sep 24, 2010
    You forgot the blues... so many blues!!!

    Nice thread, this. So here's mine -- most back from the Nineties, when I still had time to properly read and re-read every book:

    # Chimaera drifting through the void, obviously (my first contact with Star Wars in DFR, yes before HttE and yes even before I'd seen the movies)

    # I know I've been mentioning this a lot lately, but... that plague-ridden spaceport in Meridian (or was it Antemeridian?) sector, seen through the eyes of the Droids, in PoT

    # The sinter formations on Belsavis in CotJ

    # Jaina's cell on Hethrir's worldship, and Crseih station from outside against the backdrop of the black hole with its accretion disk, in Crystal Star

    # the Rogues capturing a giant construction droid on Coruscant... this mostly for the comm traffic humor

    # and, more recently, that weird aside in Yoda: Dark Rendezvous that has two droids playing holochess on top of a skyscraper watching some Jedi run into the temple, even while drawing up statistics on the number of sentient species in the Galaxy, introducing the bivalva contemplativa etc... just too weird not to stick in the head.

    # Also, Mindor being sheared apart by gravitic forces in LSatSoM...

    # ...and while we're at longish titles, SWDBPODANOTOR's mining planet at the beginning, including that brawl.

    Ooh and for a recent non-canon example:

    # Xasha approaching the ruins of the Eclipse II among the shards of Byss, in @Mechalich's awesome post-DE fanfic Ashes of Empire.
  19. Robimus

    Robimus Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Jul 6, 2007
    Luke saving Jacen in Dark Tide, dominating the Vong with two lightsabers. Probably my favorite moment of the NJO series.
  20. General Immodet

    General Immodet Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 5, 2012
    The beginning of Dark Empire 2 (when the Avenger comes out of Hyperspace) is one of those "kodak moments" for me...
    fistofan1 likes this.
  21. RC-1991

    RC-1991 Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 2, 2009
    On the subject of Dark Rendezvous, I can perfectly visualize the parlay between Dooku and Yoda, right down to the storm silhouetting Yoda and Dooku's comm chiming.
    fistofan1 likes this.
  22. beccatoria

    beccatoria Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 8, 2006
    Ooooh, okay, some serious suggestions now -

    - Ganner's Last Stand is probably the moment I could pick if I could only pick one. The point at which he's fighting on piles of the dead, but before they bring out the artillery.

    - The destruction of Ithor.

    - Elegos A'Kla's bejewelled skeleton.

    - Thrawn's death.

    - For some reason, Leia's duel against Beldorian always sticks in my mind, visually, as does the final moment when Callista sees Luke but leaves without speaking.

    - I agree with RC - the parlay between Yoda and Dooku is brilliantly rendered in my mind even though it's not a dramatic action piece.

    - The entirety of Twin Suns Squadron all painted up differently. Another of those odd images I can't explain but just struck me as really iconic.
    Rew and Zeta1127 like this.
  23. Zorrixor

    Zorrixor Force Ghost star 6

    Sep 8, 2004

    Did you have to mention Beldorian in a thread about visualisations? I... I...

    *runs away to vomit as he recalls the image of Beldorian's formidable library*
  24. GrandAdmiralJello

    GrandAdmiralJello Comms Admin ❉ Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque star 10 Staff Member Administrator

    Nov 28, 2000
    You VISUALIZED that? Good grief. :p

    fistofan1 - The X-wing books have a lot of those moments. There's another one that sticks in my mind that never actually happened, but the concept is still super vivid. Isard is scoffing at the notion that Zsinj would ever threaten Imperial Center, and she discusses how she'd pluck his heart out of his chest and toss it from the highest spire in the city -- quite the vivid image there.

    I also agree re: Jedi Search. I can imagine Wedge in his foreman getup being a construction worker for whatever weird reason... actually, another KJA memory is from Darksaber, when he's also inexplicably commanding the frigate Yaveris and doing that combat drill against that assault frigate. The two ships flying side by side sticks in my memory, especially since I had to amend it over the years once I finally figured out (thanks to the Rebellion game) what an assault frigate actually looked like.
  25. Silas Nightstalker

    Silas Nightstalker Jedi Knight star 3

    Sep 7, 2012
    Luke fighting one of the many Lost Tribe Sith in Ascension. The female Sith is terrified after Luke kills her dueling partner, and Luke promises her a quick death. So beastly.