Friday, June 10, 2011

Star Wars: Deathtroopers

So, it's no secret that I love Star Wars. That's the original rilogy, mind you, as far as I'm concerned it sure is a shame George Lucas never quite got around to making the prequels. Anyway, Starting in the early 90s a series of books about what happened after the original trilogy began, and I, being a fan, started reading them. I used to buy them all as they came out, and I'd usually read them within a day, eagerly awaiting the next.

I've since stopped for several reasons. At first, these were good stories, and normally well written by respected science fiction writers. The quality began to degrade rapidly after the first prequel movie came out, and all of the respected writers went on to new projects while new starwars books started being written by the lowest bidder. It was as if everyone saw The Phantom Menace and said, "well, if even george lucas doesn't care about quality now, why should we break our backs?" They began brining in references from the prequel movies that even contradict the original trilogy as well as the books that came before them. And most annoyingly, they began to make up their own curse words. I always hate it when writers try to make up new curse words. It always sounds stupid no matter what they do. In the original star wars trilogy the characters all said words like damn and hell. so why would they not use these same words to epress themselves a few years later in their lives? it doesn't make sense and I just got sick of it all and stopped spending my money on the star wars books because the quality just wasnt there anymore.

There were some really good books that came out in the beginning that I really enjoyed, but everything was just getting ruined after a certain point. I mean, how many tyrants can overthrow the government in a single man's life anyway? Not only are they badly written, unimaginitve crap, but they strain credulity far beyond what anyone should be expected to take with a straight face.

So I was at the library and I saw on a display shelf this book called Star Wars: Deathtroopers. It had a storm trooper helmet with blood splattered on it hanging on a spike on the cover. I had sworn off Star Wars books, but I was somewhat intrigued. I picked it up and read the flap. Han Solo vs. Zombies... I am not joking.

"Now Eric, that's just plain ridiculous," you say? Why yes it is indeed. But you know what, as a story, it works, and it's one of the most entertaining books I've read of late. This is due to the mathematical principle that Zombies = Win.

Now, I'm not saying that every zombie movie/book/whatever is great. Oh no, there are quite a few downright awful ones out there. But generally, just about anything is better with zombies than it is without. I will give a few examples.

The Pirates of the Carribean movies. Movie 1 had the heroes facing off against zombie pirates. Is there anything in this world that is more epic than that? Look at movies 2, 3, and 4 in the series. No more zombie pirates... AND THEY SUCKED!!!

Pride and prejudice is a horribly boring monstricity that I wouldn't inflict on my worst enemy, but add zombies to it and it's still pretty dang boring, but the parts with the zombies in it are rather entertaining and they somewhat break the soul crushing boredom of pride and prejudice up into more manageable pieces.

Now, think of the worst movie that you have ever seen in your entire life. Let's throw Transformers 2 out there, because, hey, it was no Citizen Cain. The acting was horrible, the special effects were laughably bad, the plot, if you can call it a plot, was convoluted and nonesensical, and there wasn't a single shred of character developement anywhere, but don't worry, michael bay replaced all of those things with bigger, more slow motiony explosions, so it's all good, right? WRONG!!! explosions =/= a well developed story with interesting characters, especially with Shia Lebeuff as the lead. Now, imagine, if you will, Transformers 2 with zombies in it. It's still a pile of crap, but at least there's some entertainment value in it now, and the possibility that Shia Labitch might get his face eaten off by one.

Anyway, Star Wars: Deathtroopers is a little ridiculous, and it does take a story that really shouldn't have been written as a star wars story and shoehorns star wars characters and references into it. However, it's decently written and once you get past the whole WTF starwars vs. zombies thing and sit down to have some fun with it, it can actually be a very entertaining book to read.

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