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Casual Saturdays: Why You Should Read the Ender’s Game Comic Book October 4, 2008

Posted by lotrking in Casual Days, Comic Book Stuff, Other Random Stuff.
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First off, the details: Ender’s Game is one of the most beloved science-fiction novels of our time. Written by Orson Scott Card and first published as a novel in 1985, Ender’s Game tells the story of a future in which we have been attacked by an alien race known as the Formics (often called “Buggers” for their insect-like appearance). While we defeated the first wave of their ships, the leaders of Earth knew that they would return in decades with a full attack force. So, they have begun to take the brightest children on Earth, and train them in a Battle School. Ender is one of these children, and perhaps the brightest of them all, but can he find a way to stop the Buggers, when no one else has? Ender’s Game: Battle School will be a comic book mini-series from Marvel Comics. Issue #1 goes on sale on Wednesday October 8th. Sellouts may occur, so you may want to pick up your copy soon. To find a comic book store need you, call 1-888-COMICBOOK

For those who’ve read the novel, but don’t normally read comics: If you’ve read the novel, I’m assuming you’ve liked it. (And if you didn’t, there’s something wrong with you.) Surely you’ve heard that an Ender’s Game movie is in the works, but currently, not too much is occurring, because filmmakers are having a hard time transitioning it from book to movie. Since comics are essentially half-way in between books and movies, a successful comic book could show Hollywood that Ender’s Game can indeed be translated to the visual medium. So, if nothing else, reading the comic may be supporting the development of the movie.

Of course, that is not the only nor the best reason to read the comic book. The primary reason, is simply that it will be an adaptation of one of sci-fi’s best novels. If you would go to see the Ender’s Game movie, why wouldn’t you read the comic book? Like a movie, the comic will help bring the novel to life by adding visuals and “sound effects.” Of course, you may also be persuaded to read it from the praise that Orson Scott Card (who is not writing the comic) has given it here.

For those who read comics, but haven’t read the novel: first off, shame on you! You consider yourself a sci-fi fan, and you haven’t read Ender’s Game? Well, here’s your chance to find out why this book is so highly regarded. If you’re like me when it comes to comics, and usually enjoy traditional superhero tales best, you’ll be glad to learn that there is much to appreciate in the story of Ender’s Game. No, there aren’t any characters in capes and tights running around trying to stop a super-villain from destroying the city, but many similar elements can be found.

Ender is an outcast amongst his peers, and doesn’t really want to participate in “saving the world,” he just wants to grow up like a normal kid. He lives in a future where the Earth was devastated by Formic attacks, and all the world has been united in preparing to defeat the Formics when they return. In Battle School, he overcomes great odds to quickly rise as one of the best students. And for those who enjoy a little “secret identity” intrigue, there is the Earth-side story (assuming they keep this plot thread in the comic) of “Locke and Demosthenes” and how they use their “abilities” to help change the world.

For those who’ve read the novel and read comics: If you aren’t already planning on reading this, you need to take a moment right now and ask yourself why.



Casual Saturdays: John Locke – In Memoriam May 31, 2008

Posted by lotrking in Casual Days, L O S T.
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If anyone hasn’t already had the LOST Season Four finale spoiled by reading yesterday’s post, then the title of today’s post gives it away. (That’s your fault for not watching the episode yet anyway, you untrue LOST fan. :p 😉 ) So yes, John Locke, my favorite LOST character, and one of my favorite fictional characters ever is now dead. There is some hope, assuming we see what happened to the Island after it vanished, we will likely get more of his story and learn just how he died. Likewise, there are rumors floating around that if Locke’s body returns to the Island, it will come back to life like Christian’s did. Then again, I think Christian seems more a phantom than alive, so who knows really? Personally, I’ve accepted that this awesome character is going to die, but at least we know he probably died happy. After his miserable existence before the Island, we see that Locke was finally able to learn the secrets of the Island and to lead a group of people who believed in it as strongly as he did.

So why all this fuss about a dead fictional character? No, I’m not traumatized at his death, nor will I be wearing black the next several days. But his character was awesome in so many ways, that I figured he deserved a little memorial post. (Don’t tell me Dumbledore wasn’t on your mind for several days after reading Harry Potter 6!) Locke, more than any other character in the show, “got” the Island. While everyone else was merely trying to survive and get rescued, Locke was surviving effortlessly and exploring this new world around him. It wasn’t long before he stumbled upon some of the secrets of the Island and spent his time trying to solve their mysteries.

Of course, what caused this intense curiosity is likely the healing that the Island brought to him. I’m not just referring to his paralyzed legs that were suddenly healed, he also got his life “healed.” Before the Island, Locke had had a traumatizing and tragic life. Everything that had brought him joy had been stolen away by a sad event, oftentimes involving his con artist father. On the Island, Locke finally had a chance to escape that. He had the opportunity to lead, to learn, and to have what he did actually matter. He began to realize in his explorations of the Island that “everything happens for a reason.” Locke was able to see things where other people did not want to see them. Truly, the Island chose him for a very special reason.

Here’s to the memory of the unforgettable character named John Locke.