“Searching For Plob Day Smores”

by wjw on February 27, 2018

Back in the Sixties, I’m sure it seemed plausible to Arthur Clarke that by 2001, we’d have HAL 9000.

Instead, by 2017, we got Alexa.

Jerry March 5, 2018 at 1:08 pm

What a hoot! But that brings something to mind — there has been very little science-fiction comedy written, at least intentionally. I immediately think of Keith Laumer’s “Retief” series. And Harlan Ellison scattered urbanity through much of his work (“Yeah, the boys in the precinct station have started calling that new robot policeman ‘Brillo.’ You know — metal fuzz. . . .”) , as have you (“Ask about our orgasm chips — your partner will thank you!”) [Quoting from memory, sorry]

Can you and/or your intelligent and talented fan base point to other out-of-this-world comedy?

wjw March 5, 2018 at 3:13 pm

I can’t think of any recent stuff at all, but there are a lot of classics out there. Terry Pratchett seems to have filled all possible niches for humor-based fantastic fiction.

My Maijstral books. A lot of Harry Harrison. The Poul Anderson/Gordon Dickson collaborations.

As for satire, there’s William Tenn, a lot of Fredrik Pohl, Robert Sheckley, Cyril Kornbluth . . .

And now I’ve hit a wall.

Etaoin Shrdlu March 6, 2018 at 10:16 am

For single scenes, there was the Hot Fudge Sundae gedankenexperiment scene in Niven and Pournelle’s “Lucifer’s Hammer” — “And now, as the comet rounds the sun, trailing a luminous froth of fake whipped cream. . . .” Convenient link to that, about 60% of the way down: http://www.baen.com/Chapters/0872234878/0872234878___9.htm

And how could anyone forget Roger Zelazny? Although admittedly his best (IMHO) comedy was in his fantasy novels.

“Some quicksand is quicker than other quicksand. Fortunately, you are sinking into that of the slower sort. . . . I suggest you solicit aid of my followers or learn the difficult art of mud-breathing.” — Lord of Light

“It was just one damned thing after another.” — Second Amber Chronicles

All of the headlines and news excerpts in Eye of Cat

Harry Harrison’s Stainless Steel Rat series (although after the third book they got rather cringeworthy; someone told me that they were ghost-written, but I don’t know that for sure).

For modern stuff, Craig Alanson’s Expeditionary Force has some good moments, as does Dennis E Taylor’s Bobiverse series. Barry J Hutchison’s Space Team series is fonking hilarious.

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