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SFF History (The Pulp Archivist) The Age of Despair — “By the time ‘The Cold Equations’ killed off the Campbelline Revolution in 1954, science fiction sales had plateaued and most of the Campbelline authors, to include Asimov, the Kuttners, and Heinlein, had either abandoned science fiction entirely or sought out more lucrative markets. Science fiction […]

There was a time in the 1970s when Frank Frazetta retreated as the preeminent painter of fantasy paperback book covers but before the rise of Ken Kelly, Boris Vallejo, and Rowena. This was a time of Frazetta imitators. Among those were Spanish artists brought in by Warren Magazines. One of those was Enrique Torres. He […]

I was recently pondering why certain works of science fiction horror, whether employing the written word or the moving picture, appeal to me, and others do not.  This is slightly different than asking what makes a good or bad book, because horror works more on the emotions.  Either it succeeds in forming a memorable, strong […]

Leigh Brackett is something of a staple here at Castalia House and for the Pulp Revolution crowd at large, but I must admit it’s taken me quite a while to get to her stuff. I’ve seen Alex’s reviews, of course, and I’ve noted her constant exclusion by the “women have historically been excluded from SFF!!1” […]

The House Where Time Stood Still by Seabury Quinn appeared in the March 1939 issue of Weird Tales. A scanned pdf of this issue can be found here at Luminist.org. I’m sure that if I had the time and money to delve deeper into Weird Tales, I’d find myself wondering why and pontificating on the injustice […]

The full Gondwane Epic runs six books.  Lin Carter apparently planned ten.  I have the first four chronologically—The Warrior of World’s End, The Enchantress of World’s End, The Immortal of World’s End, and The Barbarian of World’s End (there are rather expensive copies available on Amazon; I can’t vouch for their quality).  Carter really should […]

The greatest argument for reading much and reading widely is the chance to see sides of things that were invisible to the authors – if only by virtue of having a completely different perspective.[1] An excellent example of this is this article by Vishwas R. Gaitonde on viewing Narnia through a Hindu lens. Gaitonde takes us on […]

It turns out that Rocket’s Red Glare is NOT an exclusively American themed collection.  A few of the stories fit that theme, but now that the number has dipped below .500, I’m forced to conclude that the unabashedly pro-US position in some of the stories is the icing and not the cake.  Which is fine […]

The question of just what sort of game Classic Traveller really was at the beginning is among the greatest mysteries of gaming. Mind you, that’d be Traveller without the Third Imperium. Without the big ships of High Guard or the grav tank design sequences of Striker. Traveller without “advanced” character generation. Without the Spinward Marches. […]

Today’s post is a guest post by Karl Gallagher, author of the critically acclaimed novel Torchsip and regular contributor to Superversive SF. One of the earliest hard SF novels is Edison’s Conquest of Mars by Garrett Servis. It’s effectively an unauthorized sequel to HG Wells’ War of the Worlds, published in 1898. It’s actually a sequel […]

Electronic Arts (video game publishing superpower) is a pretty scummy company—voted “Worst Company in America” 2 years running!—but in the quest to milk every single dollar out of an increasingly alienated and cynical fanbase, they occasionally do something not completely horrible. (Or at least something marginally useful for the purposes of researching one of my […]

Appendix N (RMWC Reviews) Appendix N Review: The Ship of Ishtar — “There’s so much going on. Action, magic, ancient Babylonian gods, a superhumanly strong drummer named Gigi, a badass redheaded Persian warrior named Zubran, and a Viking named Sigurd who swears blood brotherhood to Kenton and Zubran. In true adventure fashion, the stakes keep raising […]