Saturday, January 20, 2018

Lies My (Jedi) Teacher Told Me Part 3: The Truth About the First Skywalker

Star Wars Jedi lies
Previously, I went over what appear to be Star Wars discrepancies, but are actually lies that Obi-Wan Kenobi told so that Luke Skywalker would kill his own father as well as a deliberate pattern of omitting references to Qui-Gon Jinn to avoid the embarrassing admission that the Jedi of the past had acted against their own principles. In this final installment, we turn to the lies about Anakin Skywalker's transformation from a Jedi Knight to a Sith Lord. 

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Lies My (Jedi) Teacher Told Me Part 2: Choosing Not to Look at Qui-Gon Jinn

Star Wars Jedi lies
In part 1 of this series, I covered Star Wars discrepancies that were the result of Obi-Wan Kenobi lying so as to get Luke Skywalker off-planet and start his Jedi training.

In the second of this three-part series, it is time to learn about Obi-Wan's deceptions regarding his own past that are definitely not simply the result of the filmmakers making continuity mistakes.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Lies My (Jedi) Teacher Told Me Part 1: The Process of Hero Making

Star Wars Jedi liesWe would all do well to remember when Return of the Jedi showed Obi-Wan Kenobi to be an brazen liar. The moment comes when the Force ghost of Obi-Wan Kenobi—who is supposed to be a good guy—sits down on a fell tree in the swamps of Dagobah to rationalize his fabrication about the fate of Luke Skywalker’s father. While Obi-Wan had said that Darth Vader killed Anakin Skywalker, it turns out that Darth Vader is Anakin Skywalker. But, Obi-Wan says, he was actually telling the truth because, from his perspective, Anakin Skywalker's turn to the Dark Side of the Force was the same as becoming a different person. He even lamely tries to boost this attempt at weaseling his lie into the truth by tacking on a vague aphorism about "point of view" as if this were some sort of lesson in wisdom:

BEN: Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.

What could be a saving move on the part of Obi-Wan Kenobi becomes a non-starter for the rest of the film. There is no moment with Luke Skywalker realizing for himself that perspective alters truth. There is no point where Luke—much less anyone— sees that alternative facts lead to different conclusions that reflect one's ideological assumptions. Rather, in Star Wars, it is when truth has been compromised that these sorts of point of view shifts come about. What we are left with, then, is Obi-Wan Kenobi using this vague aphorism as an excuse to get himself out of having to own up to his lie.

Some might argue that this apparent dishonesty is a byproduct of the films' creators lacking any grand vision for the series, leading to continuity mistakes and discrepancies in the Star Wars movies from changing things haphazardly. But, as I will demonstrate, the better explanation is that the Jedi have a firm habit of misleading with lies and half-truths.

Welcome to the first of my three-part series on Jedi lies and the lying Jedi who tell them.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

AE Reads Skiffily Episode 7: "Her Husband's Hands" by Adam-Troy Castro

science fiction literature podcast
Episode 7 of AE Reads Skiffily is recorded, edited, and published. This is a science fiction podcast that features readings of speculative fiction stories from around the (English-speaking) world, and inspires artists, listeners, and other sorts of entities with ears. Gather round and listen to a story about a woman whose husband has come back from war missing pieces of himself.

Saturday, April 08, 2017

AE Reads Skiffily Episode 5: "Beneath Impossible Circumstances" by Andrea Kneeland

Time for episode 5 of AE Reads Skiffily, the literature podcast that features science fiction stories read out loud with sound effects. This science fiction podcast features speculative fiction stories that inspire readers and listeners everywhere. Episode 5 is a little shorter than some of the other episodes, but still contains a full story for your listening pleasure.

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

AE Reads Skiffily Episode 4: "The Venus Effect" by Joseph Allen Hill

It's a few days late, but episode 4 of AE Reads Skiffily is ready for your listening pleasure. Episode 4 features a new first, female voices for female characters.If you are prepared for a scifi podcast that features people reading science fiction stories (as well as immersive sound effects), then begin listening now.

Monday, January 30, 2017

AE Reads Skiffily Episode 3: "The Lord of Discarded Things" by Lavie Tidhar

For your listening pleasure, episode 3 of AE Reads Skiffily is ready to tickle your ears and inspire your imagination. If you are new to the
podcast (and, let's be honest, you likely are), this scifi podcast involves readings from excerpts of science fiction stories by me, AE, along with helpful sound effects. This episode features a groundbreaking first for the podcast.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

AE Reads Skiffily Episode 2: "Taste the Singularity at the Food Truck Circus" by Jeremiah Tolbert

I have done it again. Episode 2 of AE Reads Skiffily is now available for your listening pleasure. Each episode of this science fiction podcast features me, AE, reading thought-provoking speculative fiction along with sound effects. Yes, that is right, you get the pew pew pew with your science fiction audio.

Friday, November 04, 2016

New Podcast Premiere - AE Reads Skiffily

Welcome everyone to the first episode of AE Reads Skiffily, a new podcast featuring me, AE. The core of this new science fiction podcast is my desire to share engaging speculative fiction and see new worlds jump out of the page onto other media. Each podcast episode will feature me reading excerpts from science fiction books, magazines, blogs, or wherever else science fiction is published. I assure you that the speculative fiction will be the kind that taps into your imagination and takes you to new and intriguing places.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Cobalt Eyes and Dark Skin - The Real Faces of Dune

As a fan of Frank Herbert’s Dune (1965), I have a love-hate relationship with the visual-media representation of the characters and styling of David Lynch’s (1984) and the Scifi Channel’s (2000, 2003) representation. On the one hand, it’s exciting to see a book come alive and to share thought-provoking content with my not-so-literate friends. On the other hand, when movies get your favorite characters wrong, your blood boils so bad that you need medical treatment from the Scary German Guy in Monster Squad (1987).

How do you say "I love your face sores" in German?
With the revelation of an unmade Dune project directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky (2013), a growing number of visual-media services capable of providing engaging multi-season adaptations of popular book series (I’m looking at you, Game of Thrones), original content from streaming services not bound by demands of conventional television (see Netflix et al.), and the willingness of the eldest of Herbert’s sons to soak money out of the Dune Franchise, it’s only a matter of time before another attempt at adapting the Dune series will engage (and disappoint) long-time Dune fans.

With that in mind, I would like to focus on a few characters who I feel didn’t get an accurate representation in the 1984 movie, the 2000 miniseries, or the 2003 Children of Dune miniseries. In addition to notable representations in video games and Jodorowsky’s failed project, I will also be sharing interesting art I’ve found via trolling through DeviantArt, giving credit along the way to artists I think have more accurately captured the characters in the book.