EP581: That Game We Played During the War: Escape Pod
EP581: That Game We Played During the War: Escape Pod
Irrational and blind,
Or fear looms,
Defiant and closed.
― Octavia E. Butler, Parable of the Talents (1998)
Look who she just made for me!
(Rey’s hair beneath her removable cap is the the cutest thing ever, but I love the goggles so much I had to leave it on for this photo.)
Now they can join the rest of the gang!
May the Force be with you!
I can’t believe it’s been forty years.
On June 13, 1977, a terrible crime rocked the world that I knew. Three young Girl Scouts from my hometown area were found murdered outside of their tent at the Girl Scout property Camp Scott near Locust Grove, Oklahoma.
It hit very close to home for me not only geographically, but for a variety of reasons, and it continues to be an unsolved case and an unhealed wound in my home state. I didn’t want to let this anniversary pass without observing it.
I didn’t want today to go by without saying the names of these beloved girls:
Lori Lee Farmer (age 8), Doris Denise Milner (age 10), and Michelle Heather Guse (age 9).
The case was complicated by racial/ethnic tensions, because the victims were white and black, and the only official suspect, Gene Leroy Hart, was Cherokee. After a complicated and dramatic manhunt, Hart was tried but eventually found innocent. (Recent DNA tests proved inconclusive.) Since then, the case has remained unsolved, the fodder for local legends, suggestions of bizarre occult and ritual connections, and various conspiracy theories. The Girl Scout camp remains closed to this day.
For more information:* The Tulsa World just published a six-part series on the murders here: “40 years ago, the murders of three Girl Scouts in Oklahoma stunned the nation, created shockwaves still being felt.”
There’s also an audio version here.* Episode 169 of the Generation Why Podcast offers a thoughtful and detailed discussion of the murders and the subsequent investigation.
* The most famous book on the case remains Someone Cry for the Children: The Unsolved Girl Scout Murders of Oklahoma and the Case of Gene Leroy Hart by Michael and Dick Wilkerson.
* Photos of the abandoned site are posted here at AbandonedOK.
* The long-rumored movie supposedly designed to name an alternative murder suspect, Candles, is currently listed at IMDB as filming for 2017 release, but I remain skeptical that it will happen. It’s been listed as in pre-production/production for six years now, and each year the release date is updated.
I just finished watching the 2015 documentary Mifune: The Last Samurai by Oscar-winning director Steven Okazaki (streaming on Netflix). It’s very, very much worth watching. Two thumbs up.
I’m a fan of both Toshiro Mifune’s and Akira Kurosawa’s – I’ve just pulled Throne of Blood, Sanjuro, and Yojimbo from my DVD collection for rewatching – and I got a lot out of this film. But even if you’re unfamiliar with this incomparable, iconic actor, I’d recommend the documentary. It’s very accessible, and it provides great context. Without Mifune, there would have been no Magnificent Seven, no Clint Eastwood as a Man with No Name, no Star Wars.
As you may know, Mifune was George Lucas’s first choice to portray Obi-Wan Kenobi. As much as I dearly love Alec Guinness, I still ask myself, “What if?”
I’ve been thinking about indie documentaries related to Star Wars – that is, documentaries above and beyond those “making of” and “behind the scenes” documentaries available with various versions of the DVDs, my favorite of which is Empire of Dreams from 2004, or channel-specific televised specials, such as ESPN's Star Wars: Evolution of a Lightsaber Duel from 2015, which my students love – that I find enjoyable/useful.
Here are the ones that come to mind:
* Looking for Leia (in production, Kickstarter in progress)
* Elstree 1979 (in production)
* Elstree 1976 (2015)
* I Am Your Father (2015)
* The People vs. George Lucas (2010)
* A Galaxy Far, Far Away (2001)
Any recommendations for others? Thanks!
There are several discussions of Star Wars meta from different sources I want to recommend:
* On the Guardians of the Whills Rejecting the Light Side/Dark Side Discord in Their Understanding of the Force (It's canon!) Note: This also includes discussion of Qui-Gon Jinn and the so-called Gray Jedi.
* How Rogue One Subverts Asian Male Stereotypes (And Why That's Important)
* Considering Baze and Chirrut in the Context of Chinese Culture and Storytelling
“Edgar Allan Poe has lost everyone he ever loved and now he is losing his mind. Haunted by his dead wife and his literary failures, the poet tumbles into a fantastic world created by his genius…and his madness.”
Here is the trailer.
-- Writing Critical Book Review
-- Book Reviews
-- Book Reviews
We currently have the following titles available for review:
The Berlin Project (by Gregory Benford).
Codex Orféo: A Novel (by Michael Charles Tobias).
Europa's Lost Expedition: A Scientific Novel (by Michael Carroll).
The Hunt for FOXP5: A Genomic Mystery Novel (by Wallace Kaufman and David Deamer).
Murder on the Einstein Express and Other Stories (by Harun Siljak).
Science Fiction and Futurism: Their Terms and Ideas (by Ace Pilkington).
Science Fiction by Scientists: An Anthology of Short Stories (ed. by Michael Brotherton).
Speculative Blackness: The Future of Race in Science Fiction (by André M. Carrington).
Using Medicine in Science Fiction: The SF Writer's Guide to Human Biology (by H.G. Stratmann).
To request a book for review, or if you have any questions about the book review process for the Journal of Science Fiction, please contact Monica Louzon (Managing Editor) at monica.louzon@museumofsciencefiction.
I’m also doing some reading on his works, too. And speaking about texts on Jiang Wen, if you’re interested in him and and his perspective, you definitely should check out everything posted under the “#Books on Baze” tag here. Must reads!
On a somewhat related note, I’ve also managed since first watching Rogue One to see ten or so Donnie Yen films, and I’m sure there are more of those to come, as well – so, yes, that’s probably another forthcoming post. (Two words: Ip Man.)
On a more loosely-related note, if you have the chance to see the brilliant Genghis Khan exhibit at Charlotte’s Discovery Place, do so! It’s wonderful and it’s leaving very soon. I had the good fortune of catching it just after finishing John Keay’s China: A History, so that was excellent timing.
Currently I’m reading Autumn of the Black Snake: The Creation of the U.S. Army and the Invasion that Opened the West by William Hogeland, which I’ll be reviewing for Reason.
It’s finals time in university land, so if I’m quiet, just know that I’m grading. And grading. And then grading some more!
- Captain Phasma, a 5-issue comic by Delilah S. Dawson
- Leia: Princess of Alderaan, a YA novel by Claudia Gray (whose Bloodline and Lost Stars are among my favorite Star Wars novels)
- The Legends of Luke Skywalker, a novel by Ken Liu (I am most excited about this! Ken Liu? Luke Skywalker? Yes!) Ken Liu talks more about this title here. Fantastic.
I'm still having a difficult time finding the most efficient way to post images to Dreamwidth. Every option seems very clunky to me. So it goes.