Showing posts from November, 2011


Last night, I watched a couple of episodes of series 2 of The Clone Wars with my 6 year old daughter, Isobel. We both like The Clone Wars, and for myself, the series does a much better job of articulating Lucas's ideas about the Jedi than the prequel trilogy is ever able to do. In particular, Annakin's journey from padawan to Obi-Wan's equal to Darth Vader always seemed under-motivated to me, partly through the execrable script in Attack of the Clones, and partly through Hayden Christianson's limitations as an actor in that film and in Revenge of the Sith.

The idea that Annakin wishes to forestall the death of Padme as a kind of psychological effect of the loss of his mother doesn't really work for me; how does this explain his fall to the 'dark side', and in particular the scene where he enters the Jedi temple to slay all the younglings? How does this square with him soon to become a father? While I think it's an interesting thing for Lucas to do to mak…

on Starship Troopers

Here's a short section from my book Masculinity in Fiction and Film:

The rhetoric of the frontier [...] is clearly crucial to science fictions that involve contact (and warfare) with alien species. Alasdair Spark suggested that Heinlein should be considered a ‘Social Darwinist, whose ideal society is one in which the individual is free to rise to his “natural” level of power, wealth, and authority'. The same may be said of the model of competition, between humans and Bugs as competing colonists, that Heinlein employs macrocosmically in Starship Troopers. Victory, in the MI troopers war, will produce the colonial hegemon. Ziauddin Sardar has suggested that ‘Wherever we look, the colonising, imperial mission of science fiction is hard to miss. Space, the final frontier, is the recurrent frontier on which Western thought has been constructed and operated throughout history, or time’. Domination is legitimated through the pseudo-Darwinist competition for resources. Politically, th…