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Old 06-28-2018, 01:22 PM
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Default RIP Harlan Ellison

as reported by his wife on twitter:

"Susan Ellison has asked me to announce the passing of writer Harlan Ellison, in his sleep, earlier today. “For a brief time I was here, and for a brief time, I mattered.”—HE, 1934-2018. Arrangements for a celebration of his life are pending."

source

Harlan Ellison was problematic. Especially as the world moved on and he didn't but he also had a huge influence on sci-fi.
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:22 PM
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I should probably read one of his books...
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:33 PM
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I feel like I've read approximately two billion introductions and forwards by Harlan Ellison. Is there a more prolific Blurb-Person in genre fiction?
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:34 PM
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He was a weird fellow at best. I seem to recall him writing a detailed instance of him engaging in something resembling BDSM at a younger age, and just leaving his partner chained to the blinds for the rest of the evening to be discovered by her family, something that would without question be considered assault by today's standards.
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:40 PM
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He wrote some pretty ripping yarns. As a personality he was a good example of how if you make that face too long, it's gonna freeze that way.
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:51 PM
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He was an asshole, but perfection is boring anyway.
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Old 06-28-2018, 01:56 PM
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On the one hand, City on the Edge of Forever is a Star Trek video whose subtext is quite interesting when read in the context of this country's current events
On the other hand, he was also the kind of guy who wanted to write some sort of drug-smuggling ring subplot into that same episode
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Old 06-28-2018, 02:03 PM
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Well, this is shitty news.
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Old 06-28-2018, 02:20 PM
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I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream is the one of the best horror stories I've ever read. I think that's the only thing of his I've read, outside of his TV work on Star Trek and uh, the 80s Twilight Zone?
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Old 06-28-2018, 02:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YangusKhan View Post
I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream is the one of the best horror stories I've ever read. I think that's the only thing of his I've read, outside of his TV work on Star Trek and uh, the 80s Twilight Zone?
Orion Pictures did give Ellison an acknowledgement credit in The Terminator, since it was in large part inspired by the Outer Limits episodes "Soldier" and "Demon With A Glass Hand".

That's mostly how I remember Harlan Ellison: as the author who gets angry at stories that might have been plagiarizing his work.

Godspeed, you curmudgeonly old crank.
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Old 06-28-2018, 04:30 PM
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I haven't read any of his stuff but he did write one of the greatest episodes of OG Trek, so I'll always appreciate that.
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Old 06-28-2018, 04:51 PM
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https://www.newsfromme.com/2018/06/2...ellison-r-i-p/
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Old 06-28-2018, 05:06 PM
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https://lparchive.org/I-Have-No-Mout...I-Must-Scream/
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Old 06-28-2018, 06:46 PM
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Harlan Ellison's best work was with Scooby-Doo.



Seriously though, even though he seemed like a real piece of work, I have a copy of The Beast That Shouted Love at the Heart of the World that I have very fond memories of reading as a kid.
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Old 06-28-2018, 08:36 PM
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He was an edgelord before edgelords were a thing. May his memory be eternal.
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Old 06-28-2018, 08:49 PM
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I've read two of his short stories: "Repent Harlequin!" Cried the Tik Tok Man and Jeffty Was Five. Harlequin was clearly very influential on V for Vendetta and was about a rebel causing trouble in a world obsessed with time run by an overlord who would literally take it away from people as punishment. It's a pretty good story.

Jeffty is something else. It's about a boy who is eternally five, in body and mind. His parents suffered as they have to keep taking care of this kid with a cosmic disability and are robbed of the joy of seeing him grow up. A neighbor who would have "grown up" with him if he had ever grown up, spends some time with him and notices something weird: when he listens to the radio, he hears new episodes of shows long finished. When he picks up magazines, there are new Robert E. Howard Conan stories despite him being dead. And when he goes to the theatre, there are new Republic serials, despite those not being a thing anymore. It's a sad, strange story that I really need to read again. It's an interesting take on nostalgia and is a great story in general.

Due may have been cranky AF, but he had writing chops.
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Old 06-28-2018, 10:12 PM
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I was surprised to learn he was still alive when I looked up info on I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream a few months back. But now...*sigh* Well, he had a long life.

I might play me some IHNMAIMS tomorrow, in memoriam.
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Old 06-28-2018, 11:24 PM
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Guess this means The Last Dangerous Visons is finally coming out.
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Old 06-29-2018, 04:26 AM
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I only read one of his books (a short story collection that included the aforesaid Jeffty was Five), and I really enjoyed his writing, and I also took away the strong impression that this guy is an asshole.

And I was right on both accounts.
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Old 06-29-2018, 07:37 AM
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That time Harlan Ellison was on stage with the Penny Arcade guys, and Gabe managed to shut Harlan down by saying

"While I've got you here I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the Star Wars stuff you wrote."
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Old 06-29-2018, 07:44 AM
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I realize I might be coming across as overly mean towards someone who just died, but you guys realize that it's over the top assholes like Harlan are the REASON that so many assholes think that being an asshole is actually a sign that they're SUPER SMART and that nobody else is on their level, right?

Like.

This dude wasn't Rick from Rick and Morty in real life. Rick from Rick and Morty was Harlan Ellison in fiction.

Everything I know about Harlan Ellison makes me think he would HATE being compared to a guy from an Adult Swim cartoon, which makes me happy.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:09 AM
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I mean fucking seriously.
Quote:
Originally Posted by WIKIPEDIA (BOLDED FOR EMPHASIS)
Ellison was presented with a special committee award at the 2006 Hugo Awards ceremony. His onstage behavior was bizarre, including sucking on a microphone and culminating in his groping Connie Willis' breast. Ellison subsequently complained that Willis refused to acknowledge his apology.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:13 AM
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Well at the same time, he never held himself as an example of how to live, with the exception of Always Get Paid For Your Work.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daikaiju View Post
Well at the same time, he never held himself as an example of how to live, with the exception of Always Get Paid For Your Work.
It's actually really easy to not hold yourself as an example of how to live. All you have to do is uh... nothing.

Hell, I'd say it's almost as easy as not groping someone onstage. Or at the very least as easy as not whining about how someone you groped onstage didn't personally thank you for saying you were sorry about it.
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Old 06-29-2018, 08:45 AM
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Oh hey speaking of Always get paid for your work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christopher Priest
In August 1974 I reluctantly broke off from the novel I was writing, wrote a short story called 'An Infinite Summer', and sent it to Mr Ellison.

A long silence followed. After four months without any reaction at all from Mr Ellison, I instructed my agent to get the story back from him.

I have never regretted this, even though I was subjected to a stream of abuse and threats from Mr Ellison. This was peculiarly unpleasant, but I had one consolation he could do nothing about. I had promptly resold the story for real money, and by the time Mr Ellison was calling me names it was already in print. It was subsequently republished in a "best of the year" anthology, and since then has been regularly reprinted in books and magazines all over the world. Two decades after I wrote it, 'An Infinite Summer' is still being resold, and brings me a small but regular income.
Source: Wayback Machine Archive of The Book on the Edge of Forever.
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Old 06-29-2018, 10:27 AM
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Ellison was a titan of the field who really helped SF open up to new horizons in the 70s and there are few SF writers more influential than him

He was also an unrepentant asshole, and like many other SF titans, engaged in sexist harassing behavior on the regular

unfortunately, his chauvinist asshole behavior was probably as influential on the field as his body of work and his editing
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Old 06-29-2018, 09:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEAT View Post
It's actually really easy to not hold yourself as an example of how to live. All you have to do is uh... nothing.

Hell, I'd say it's almost as easy as not groping someone onstage. Or at the very least as easy as not whining about how someone you groped onstage didn't personally thank you for saying you were sorry about it.
Fair point. He was a Total Ass. Remember his disdain for the term "Sci-fi"? You'd think it was chalk squeaking the way he'd react.
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Old 06-29-2018, 11:46 PM
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Oh yes, there's certainly no denying that he was an asshole. Even if you don't know about his history of assholery, the guy's voice just fits AM (I Have No Mouth's asshole AI) a little too well.
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Old 06-30-2018, 05:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by upupdowndown View Post
unfortunately, his chauvinist asshole behavior was probably as influential on the field as his body of work and his editing
you have an interesting kind of a snake eating its tail thing there. consensus among folks I know in the field is that his shitty behavior escalated over the decades as fandom crowds continued to cheer for it, year in and year out.

so we come back to a familiar lesson: if thou gaze long into the gimmick, the gimmick will also gaze into thee.
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Old 07-01-2018, 10:24 AM
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Or TL'DR

"The frogurt is also cursed."
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