Author Topic: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles  (Read 552 times)

divs

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EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« on: October 18, 2019, 05:18:38 PM »
Escape Pod 700: Martian Chronicles (Part 1 of 2)


Escape Pod 701: Martian Chronicles (Part 2 of 2)


Author : Cory Doctorow
Narrator : Adam Pracht
Host : Mur Lafferty
Audio Producer : Summer Brooks

This story first appeared in the 2011 YA anthology Life on Mars: Tales from the New Frontier.

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They say you can’t smell anything through a launch-hood, but I still smelled the pove in the next seat as the space-attendants strapped us into our acceleration couches and shone lights in our eyes and triple-checked the medical readouts on our wristlets to make sure our hearts wouldn’t explode when the rocket boosted us into orbit for transfer to the Eagle and the long, long trip to Mars.

He was skinny, but not normal-skinny, the kind of skinny you get from playing a lot of sports and taking the metabolism pills your parents got for you so you wouldn’t get teased at school. He was kind of pot-bellied with scrawny arms and sunken cheeks and he was brown-brown, like the brown Mom used to slather on after a day at the beach covered in factor-500 sunblock. Only he was the kind of all-over-even brown that you only got by being born brown.


Listen to Part 1!

Listen to Part 2!

Jack Molesworth

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2019, 06:42:02 AM »
Me: "Oh boy! The Martian Chronicles. I loved reading that, this will be fun!"
Escape Pod Voice: "...by Cory Doctorow."
Me: "Oh no."

It's been often said: Cory has this unique ability to take a topic you'd think would be really boring--like venture capital funding, intellectual property rights, copyright law, yard sales--and by adding just a few sci-fi elements to it, turn it into something really amazingly boring.

This was no exception. I'm still dumbfounded that he thought a video game where kids...write corporate charters and audit companies?...would make an interesting concept. This was beyond stupid even for Cawy. "Overrated" doesn't even begin to describe his dreck.

acpracht

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2019, 04:23:01 PM »
Me: "Oh boy! The Martian Chronicles. I loved reading that, this will be fun!"
Escape Pod Voice: "...by Cory Doctorow."
Me: "Oh no."

It's been often said: Cory has this unique ability to take a topic you'd think would be really boring--like venture capital funding, intellectual property rights, copyright law, yard sales--and by adding just a few sci-fi elements to it, turn it into something really amazingly boring.

This was no exception. I'm still dumbfounded that he thought a video game where kids...write corporate charters and audit companies?...would make an interesting concept. This was beyond stupid even for Cawy. "Overrated" doesn't even begin to describe his dreck.

And Eve Online is primarily "spreadsheets in space," but has been going strong for 16 years+

Nathan Lowell's "Quarter Share" series is just a kid on a trade freighter making incrementally better trades and dealing with drudgery.

Heck, "Moby Dick" is primarily a detailed technical manual on high-seas sailing.

It's not your bag... hey, that's cool. Not everything is going to be.

But it scratches an itch for me, at least. I'd imagine there's others, too.

-Adam

(P.S. It's titled the same as Bradbury's book because a few years before Bradbury had pitched a fit about the title of "Fahrenheit 9/11" and Cory wanted to poke the bear.)

zoanon

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2019, 04:23:42 PM »
i didn't make it through part one, and I was on an 8 hour road trip.
I don't think any of the characters had anything to recommend them, and I couldn't get into it.

acpracht

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2019, 05:07:21 PM »
i didn't make it through part one, and I was on an 8 hour road trip.
I don't think any of the characters had anything to recommend them, and I couldn't get into it.

Not even Vijay? I thought he was the hero of the piece.

Languorous Lass

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2019, 08:00:08 PM »

It's been often said: Cory has this unique ability to take a topic you'd think would be really boring--like venture capital funding, intellectual property rights, copyright law, yard sales--and by adding just a few sci-fi elements to it, turn it into something really amazingly boring.

Okay, I had to snicker at this.

I believe I share Cory’s politics to a large extent, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I want to read (or listen to) stories that are largely populated by walking manifestations of political ideas.  Plus I appreciate that Cory has clearly thought through the details of how his spaceship would operate, but that doesn’t mean I need, or want, him to elaborate on every detail in his story. 

divs

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2019, 01:32:17 PM »
Hey folks, we appreciate your feedback on the story - not everything will click for everyone, but please keep your comments on the story itself. Insulting an author - even a well-known one - is not welcome.

Languorous Lass

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2019, 04:00:59 PM »
Understood.  Sorry, divs.

Swamp

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Re: EP700 & 701: Martian Chronicles
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2019, 05:42:32 PM »
I really liked this story!  Of course, Cory Doctorow introduced me to the concept of podcast fiction and to Escape Pod itself way back in Episode 27 with Craphound. 

I understand the sentiment of Cory's stories being heavy with politics and internet culture; and his narative commentary is often implemented with a hammer rather than a scalpel.  I cannot binge Doctorow; and I don't like every Doctorow story.

However, more often than not, I am intrigued by Doctorow's protagonists and their dilemmas as well as the gaming/IT references.  In this case, I was drawn in by Brion's trip to Mars and the conditions and protocols of the voyage, etc.  I then got interested in the MC game and Brion's new friends.  Once I was hooked, I just went along for the ride.  And in the end, I enjoyed the experience.
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