Strange Horizons reviews

Now, here’s a sensible idea. I’m signed up to a number of sf review site mailing lists, and never have the time to go and read the reviews; heck, I barely have time to read the notifications. Most of my non-work on-line reading is either LiveJournal, and the RSS feeds I have syndicated to my lj friends list, or personal emails. So I’m really glad to see that Strange Horizons’ new reviews editor has set up an RSS feed, syndicated to livejournal as , for their reviews.

And they’ve started with an excellent piece by on this year’s Doctor Who, “Take Me To The Fantastic Place“. Full of spoilers, so only read it if you don’t mind that kind of thing. Great lines like:

There was also a certain amount of fan muttering about whether [Russell T Davies] was trying to bring a “gay agenda” to the show—which is a lot like Catholics muttering about the new Pope bringing a “wearing robes” agenda to the Church.

And a concluding paragraph that’s worth quoting at length:

You can make a case that this new series of Doctor Who has spent thirteen weeks circling the word “fantastic”. Not just because it was the Doctor’s perpetual exclamation whenever danger threatened. And not just, also, because the dying Eccleston’s last words were a reflection on how “fantastic” Rose has been as a companion—and, indeed, on how fantastic he has been too. And not just because so many of the stories set up a contrast between the science fictional and the mundane, arguing for the thrill and delight of the Doctor’s and Rose’s explorations. (The contrast is set out visually, between the grey council estate Rose comes from and the saturated colour look established for the future in “The End of the World” and carried on from there.) You can see the loop that the series is taking Rose on—the same loop as Sam Gamgee’s. She starts as someone so thoroughly immersed in the mundane that she thinks the stories she’s told are impossible dreams that she’ll never experience. She then goes on a journey and has some extraordinary experiences, becoming adept in her own way at dealing with them, and enabling us to share her wonder at the sights she’s granted. One day, maybe, she’ll come home and see that leading a fantastic life is something that can only be done, that has to be done, in and with and for the world we’re given.

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1 Response to Strange Horizons reviews

  1. nwhyte says:

    Umm, yes!

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