Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A Super-Review of a Semi-Super Book

Today, here’s a look/review of a new book (DC-authorized of course) by Kevin J. Anderson, entitled The Last Days of Krypton.

In it Anderson looks at about the last couple of years of Krypton. He covers Brainiac and Kandor, Zod, Zor-El and Argo City, and more.

But how uninspired it all is! Anderson must have done five tons of timelines and planning, but somehow it all seems somehow even MORE depressing than the subject – a planet blows up and nearly everyone dies – requires.

Another thing that shows a distinct lack of creative impulse (and sloppy editing) is the constant use of EARTH TERMS, as spoken by people ON ANOTHER PLANET. It’s kind of irritating to read about “drawing the line” and pursuing your enemies to “take them out.”

On page 175 we hear about someone who “had a vested interest in the status quo.” Latin phrases on Krypton?

But the pièce de résistance of moronic writing/editing comes on page 230, when Zod – a guy living on Krypton – says to Jor-El – another guy living on Krypton – “I need to present my city as a new capital, a fait accompli – and soon.”

Wow! A study of English-French phrases must be an elective course at good ol’ Krypton University!

The point of all this is how jarring such out-of-place idioms are. Am I the only person to be distracted by such inelegance? Editors and copy-editors are paid to catch sore-thumb, dumb, out-of-place things like this!

Oh, I forgot to mention the part where Zod digs up Jax-Ur’s “Nova Javelins” and reads “Kilroy was here” on the casings. (Just kidding about that one.)

I also take issue with Anderson’s inability to decide which Krypton he’s telling us about. I mean, almost all of the stuff he mentions has its origins in the comics, of course, but he takes a lot of effort to include situations and characters that *could be* characters from the Chris Reeve movies.

Zod = Zod. Aethyr = Ursa. Nam-Ek = Non. That part’s easy. So, we’re following the movies, eh?

Then you have Zor-El being the underground researcher, while Jor-El has his head in the clouds. We’ve got somebody named Jax-Ur who blew up a Kryptonian moon. But it was centuries ago, and the name of the moon isn’t Wegthor (I forget the “new” name).

And the only people in the Phantom Zone are a bunch of political enemies of Zod.

And … and …

I think they call stories like these “Imaginary.”

Because by golly such a mish-mash of indecisive logorrhea certainly shouldn’t be “official.”

Where’s Elliott S! Maggin when you need him? He would’ve done us proud!

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