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Author Topic: Favorite "fan theory?"  (Read 15703 times)
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Lee Semmens
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« Reply #8 on: November 15, 2006, 01:50:07 PM »


As for PJ Farmer, I never really liked the way he kept tying together all the fictional characters of past, present and future in one huge family tree.  To me, it dimishes the importance of the individual to suggest that some genetic destiny accounts for his or her greatness, and it belittles the human race as a whole to limit all greatness to one or two bloodlines.  It turns fictional heroes into a sort of aristocracy, which is anathema to my American upbringing and actually runs counter to the raison d'etre of many of the characters involved.

That's the one major thing I hated about Philip Jose Farmer's Tarzan and Doc Savage books - but not for the same reasons as you, Nightwing (incidentally I agree with your reasoning, though).

I didn't like Farmer's drawing up family trees and making out that Tarzan and Doc Savage were related to all these fictional characters, in books that claimed that Tarzan and Doc were real people.

I also felt it demeaned Tarzan and Doc Savage, and thought it very ironical that Farmer should write about canonical and non-canonical stories, and yet reference a massive amount of outside literature, not relevant to these characters, or even written by ERB!
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nightwing
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« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2006, 06:28:01 PM »

JulianPerez writes:

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Awww, c'mon! I always loved those spooky seventies shows like IN SEARCH OF... with Leonard Nimoy.

Actually, I was thinking more along the lines of those theatrically released schlockumentaries like "Chariots of the Gods," the kind of things poor old Orson Welles would narrate to pay off his bar tab.

I liked the Nimoy show, too, and I think they've been repackaged recently for the cable market, without the now laughably dated insert shots of mutton-chopped Nimoy in his plaid sportcoats and groovy turtlenecks.  One segment that still sticks with me was about extra-sensory perception or something and they got on the subject of phantom pain, the phenomenon where amputees feel aches in limbs they no longer have.  As an experiment, they cut a leaf in half and placed it under some sort of heat-sensitive spectrometer that showed not only the living half, but also the half that was missing!  It was as if the plant, too, "thought" it was still whole and kept maintaining some sort of aura around the space that used to contain its missing half.  Really weird, creepy stuff!

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The original TREK fan magazine, pre-Next Generation, was one really great source of speculative essays.

That's the one I'm thinking of! They used to put out mass market paperback collections of the best articles.  Some of it was quite well done, and ahead of its time, what with all the "pop essay" books on the market these days (one of which I just contributed to!).

There are a few fan-generated ideas that made it into official Trek lore, like Sulu's first name "Hikaru" (an alternate suggestion wasn't nearly as catchy...Walter!) and, if I'm not mistaken, Kirk's birthplace being Iowa. 

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Even erotic fanfiction has been around for a while. There's an apocryphal story that Shatner was shown a very early Kirk/Spock slash fiction story on the set of Star Trek's second season...and consequently went absolutely ape!

This foolishness even made it into a couple of early licensed Trek novels, the "Phoenix" books.  I remember thinking it was pretty sick.  But it is interesting to ponder that some women out there actually fantasize about two guys getting it on.  I mean, we all know guys are into girl-on-girl action, but you don't hear much about the reverse.  Huh?  Also it's interesting to note that by the time of the first movie this kind of stuff had gained such a foothold that Roddenberry was compelled to include a foreward from "Captain Kirk" in his novelization of the film, where Kirk basically said, "I don't know where these rumors get started, but trust me I much prefer girls to guys.  Not that there's anything wrong with that..." Cheesy

Anyway, if you're tracing the roots of erotic fan fiction, you can take it back another few decades at least, to the "Tijuana Bibles" that featured sexcapades between and among Clark Gable, Clara Bow, Popeye, Betty Boop, Superman and Wonder Woman, you name it.

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One that was in the PJF mold was where they speculated Doc Savage might be a Vulcan. Doc Savage had strength that dwarfed even that of very strong men; his hearing was beyond human range (which is not entirely possible to attribute to exercises), he used a variation of the Vulcan Neck Pinch, he was very logical and never showed strong emotion ever, and never showed strong interest in women.

Ha! Nice way to turn it around so somehow Doc is derivative of Spock and not the other way around!  Roll Eyes

I also seem to remember an attempt to tie Spock to Sherlock Holmes.  And someone, maybe Farmer, once speculated that Spock's mother, whose maiden name was Amanda Grayson, was a descendent of a certain Boy Wonder.  Where does it all end???

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There are moments (see THE CZAR OF FEAR, among others) where Doc did something very much like the Vulcan Mind Meld: he gets information by a criminal by gripping the crook's face (!) and then asking questions.

Ha!  But where with Spock the interviewee goes blank and says, "My mind to yours...", when Doc does it he goes, "Ow, ow, ow, OWWWW!!" Cheesy

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Uncle Mxy
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« Reply #10 on: November 24, 2006, 06:02:19 AM »

My favorite Superman theory was one created by Al Shroeder, who said that Kryptonite radiation is harmless in and of itself, but contact with invulnerable Krypton matter causes it to break into secondary waves, which ARE harmful to living things. This explains why Kryptonite is not dangerous to Kryptonians when they have their powers removed - something that no other explanation for why Kryptonite works sees fit to take into account.
I've been thinking about the Kryptonite implications of Superman perhaps being able to "will" his powers away in a post-IC context.  He might be able to avoid having Kryptonite kill him by turning off his powers.  It's not as if he's learned to consciously control doing this, so it could have interesting twists.  Recall that initial exposure to Kryptonite in the comics simply led him to not having powers and didn't kill him outright.  One could retcon those ancient stories by simply saying that he unconsciously willed his powers away rather than let Kryptonite kill him. 

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This leaves open the very scary possibility that Ultraman might come to Earth-1 and start exposing himself
Yes, that would be scary.  Smiley
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alschroeder
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« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2006, 08:30:46 PM »

Of course, "The Master Hypnotist of Metropolis" was originally a fan theory - I think it was an idea of Beppe Sabbatini's, who later went on to script some stuff for DC. I quite like the idea of the Kryptonian lenses in Clark's glasses somehow giving off this low-level hypnosis to make him look quite different from Superman.

I'm afraid that was my idea.---Al
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Al Schroeder III, former letterhack (met his wife through Julie Schwartz' lettercolumns) of MINDMISTRESS http://mindmistress.comicgenesis.com---think the superhero genre is mined out? Think there are no new superhero ideas?

Think again.
Permanus
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« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2006, 11:33:07 PM »

Of course, "The Master Hypnotist of Metropolis" was originally a fan theory - I think it was an idea of Beppe Sabbatini's, who later went on to script some stuff for DC. I quite like the idea of the Kryptonian lenses in Clark's glasses somehow giving off this low-level hypnosis to make him look quite different from Superman.

I'm afraid that was my idea.---Al

Whoops! Anyone have any tips on extracting a foot from a mouth?
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Super Monkey
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« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2006, 12:18:05 AM »

hey don't feel too bad, just think of poor Al, he gets one really bad idea, and that's the one DC decides to try and make canon!

 Wink
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« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2006, 07:43:28 AM »

hey don't feel too bad, just think of poor Al, he gets one really bad idea, and that's the one DC decides to try and make canon!

 Wink

Even though it was an idea that would never really get off the ground (and understandably so), it was a clever idea.

Despite its cleverness, I never liked it because it made the Superman/Kent situation so dull. It disregards the genuinely intriguing psychology behind the fact that Lois, among others, cannot (or will not) see Superman behind those glasses.

If the explanation is simply that Superman has a completely different face to Superman (in terms of other people's perceptions), well..... there goes most of my interest in the most interesting of all secret identities.
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Permanus
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« Reply #15 on: December 06, 2006, 10:36:45 AM »

hey don't feel too bad, just think of poor Al, he gets one really bad idea, and that's the one DC decides to try and make canon!

 Wink

Actually, I think it's a good idea! Well, I did when I first read the story.
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