06 May 2012

Place, Show and Also Ran, Part 1

   In the recently completed "A to Z" feature that I posted here, there were many times that more than one idea came to mind for a particular letter. However, being limited to choosing only one, I had to set aside these ideas for the time being. And many of them were good ideas. So, I have decided that I will do a series of "also rans", starting with this one. Each will be pretty short, and there will be multiple entries in each part of this series. I hope you enjoy.

"A" is also for... AUTOMATONS

Dr. Otto Maton's "Destroyer"-class Automaton
[Warbot Destroyer from Hydra Miniatures]

   Call them mechanickal men, or robots, or automatons, they are all essentially similar: mechanical creatures that do the bidding of their masters (usually). I have already gone into a bit of detail about my automaton forces in other posts, but I love the buggers. So, I chose to go with Aether for the original "A is for..." because I knew that automatons would show up later anyway.

"B" is also for... BARSOOM

      Barsoom, the Martian name for their own planet. The home of the incomparable Dejah Thoris, and the adopted home of the mighty warlord of Mars, John Carter, once of Virginia. Since Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote about the planet almost a century ago, it has captivated readers. The recent film by Disney showed it to us in a new light, and although the plot of the film was a weak amalgamation, the visual scope was great (except for the white apes. Oh well.). Barsoom also fell victim to the "I will cover this elsewhere" bug that got automatons - a theme that you may see several times throughout this series.

"G" is also for... GERMANY

A Prussian Guards banner
   I skipped several letters to get to "G," as I do not have anything written down right now for the letters in between "B" and "G" on the 'official' list of ideas for the "A to Z". Does that last sentence qualify as quotation marks abuse? back to topic: Imperial Germany is often used as the OPFOR when facing the British in a VSF setting. As others have pointed out, this is a bit anachronistic, as the real rivals during the reign of Her Majesty (God Bless Her) Queen Victoria were the Russians and the French. Germanophobia didn't begin to develop until the very end of the 19th century and the start of the 20th, when a series of invasion novels starring the Germans as the invaders of Britain were published. I thought that Germany (or Prussia, as some would have it) was sufficiently covered with "K is for Kaiser".

   Enough for now - I will be back in a day or two with more, starting with "H is also for..."


ArmChairGeneral said...

I am glad to see these added!

Elderac said...

I could see "C" for Colonial. The drive for new colonies and efforts to defend the colonies is a distinctive feature of this period.

Elderac said...

"C" could also stand for Canals of Mars. While mentioned in the Mars entry, I don't think they get nearly enough love. Even in the Barsoomian stories of ERB and Space:1889, they tend to be overshadowed by the flying ships. I will say, though that Frank did an amazing job of describing them in Space:1889.

Canals probably belong in the category of also ran, but to me, there is a certain romance to a world spanning network of canals.