Category: geeks


Attention, 21st century Earthlings! This is Captain Blastoff, coming to you from the Galaxy Gallery in the future, with news about a little known competition that just occured in your little corner of the 21st century: The Science Fiction/Fantasy Hairdos Awards! And here are the winners:

Honorable Mention goes to Elsa Lanchester for her electrifying beehive in "Bride of Frankenstein!" (Applause)

Third place goes to Wolverine for his pointy...uh, wolverine ears...haircut? (Applause)

Second place goes to Princess Leia for her cute buns...(Applause)

...and FIRST PLACE goes to the gambler on the cover of "The Deadly Sky" by Doris Piserchia, (DAW Books, 1983) as painted by Kelly Freas. (Enthusiastic Applause!!!) This "Preliminary Painting Original Art" just went for only $334.60 on Heritage Auctions (ha.com). Guess they got some real effective hair gel in Doris' utopian city of Emera, huh?

This has been Captain Blastoff, ending transmission.

 

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Extra Extra: Bid on this Ed Emshwiller "Science Fiction Digest" cover at Heritage Auction Galleries (HA.com) at this writing. What a great piece!

Attention, Earthlings! This is Captain Blastoff, coming to you from the Galaxy Gallery in the far-flung future, talking about that great popular art form of the past, Cheap Science Fiction Book Covers!

This transmission I present TWO covers from ONE cheap, 1966 paperback! Whatta score! I just “flip” for these old Ace Double books!

The first side we’ll look at is The Star Magicians by Lin Carter:

Star Magicians PB

Some Green Goddess for your space salad? I think the guy with the sword should be waaay careful he doesn't pop that bubble while he's out in space, don't you?

I’ve often wondered why the “good” barbarian is always pitted against the evil sorcerer in so many fantasy books? I mean, who do they think are reading these books anyway? Jocks? No, it’s usually the more bookish nerd who has, after all, much more in common with someone who has studied “ancient lore and forgotten tomes” to gain in intellectual power than some belching, farting caveman with a sword.

After reading this book, I can see why Mr. Carter was picked to finish the Conan books back in the 1970s of your 20th century. The star-system-stomping barbarians are the “bad guys” in this very fantasyish sci-fi novel, and for once the (super-scientific) Magicians get to be the “good guys,” but, by the end, Lin makes it clear that he sees a role for warriors in the cosmos.

The book was good, somewhat kitschy, comic-bookish fun and it has another great cover by Jack Gaughan. This guy must’ve had it in his contract that he got credit for his covers, ’cause he’s the “most mentioned” so far, in this blog. (See Mighty Merlin and the Toothy Bat).

Once again note the flow of Jack’s layout: The Green Goddess apparition is very out of proportion, the way her long left arm reaches far down to the bad-ol’-barbarians-in-the-bubbles! But it works wonderfully within the over-all rhythm of the painting! Even the title works as part of the composition.

The flip side of this Ace treasure is The Off-Worlders (The God Killers) by John Baxter:

Space ship in poles and bubbles

So, was Mr. Bubble the art director for this flip book? Two very different covers, except there are bubbles front and back!

Cover by the renown Kelly Freas (and a small interior illo, too?) Normally, no one is a bigger fan of Freas than me-as, but the description of these pre-war buildings in the book is much cooler: Pod houses attached to the stalk elevators like fruit on a plant. Why’d ya’ make it more conventional, Kelly? Still, look at all’a those pastel Freas hues. Ouuui! Ahhhh! Niiice colors…!

The star spanning civilization of Earth is crumbling. Merryland is a planet beyond “the Limit.” After their own version of Armageddon, the little world has renounced technology and Christianity. People live like Pilgrims, farming and fishing. No progress is ever made. Secret Christian rituals are practiced, but they are a cross between a Roman Catholic liturgy and a naked, drugged Bacchanalia! And then off-worlders arrive by matter transport…

As broad and unsophisticated as the space opera, The Star Magicians, is, that’s how strange, subtle and dream-like it’s Ace Double Book spouse is. (I guess opposites attract even in the publishing world?)The characters are multi-layered and the societal situation’s complexities keep one wondering ’til the end.

I liked both sides of this book; Just in different ways…

This has been Captain Blastoff, ending transmission.

Happy Holidays, 21st Century Earthlings! This is Captain Blastoff, coming to you from the Galaxy Gallery in the future, talking about a great popular art form of the past: No, NOT Cheap Science Fiction Book Covers, but an internet treat that all aliens will adore.

As you may remember, in the last installment of our sizzling space serial, Space Cadet Rik Livingston was under house arrest for being AWOL, and derelict in his duty of translating my futuristic communiqués into blogosity for the citizenry of the early. early 21st century. But I, Captain Blastoff, had canceled the court-martial trial, as Livingston’s spacey art had just led me to a great Science Fiction discovery, a wondrously weird website called GeekCrafts.com, that actually collects the mad makings of gifted geeks from your own great globe!

Truly, this demonstrates my contention that 21st century Earthlings were ready for intergalactic entrepreneuristic enterprise long before the process of space trade actually reached the Sol System. Such treasures abound on Geek Crafts as Motherboard Christmas Trees, a Crocheted Spock Head and an alien iPod pouch! But, why tell you, when I can show you:

Cupcakes with Darth Vader

Eat light saber, Rebel Alliance! Katipeck baked Darth Vader cupcakes. We now know the Dark Side of the force: CHOCOLATE!

Soft Robot

Ever wanna hug a robot? Well, now you can: Buy 'bot's by Bitterbethany! Dig the zipper mouth!

Mr. Spock apron

A logical development in kitchen attire by Nix Sidhe, modeled by her Vulcan boyfriend. "Live long and Puree..."

Star wars images on blanket

"Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray, the Force, my Jedi to keep." Are you Star Wars crazy? Then you'll love this Star Wars Crazy Quilt by Mc Beth of SubversiveCrafting.com

And finally, we have one of the entries by Rik Livingston, that appeared on this scintillating site. While not a Cheap, Science Fiction Paperback Book Cover, per se, I do think the boy has been influenced by the works I’ve been showing you all from the Galaxy Gallery.

Floating astronaut painter

Head over heels in love with art! © Rik Livingston

Read Rik’s interview and then go geeking around ALL the great Geek Crafts. It’s a site not to be missed!

Next: Back to the BOOKS! This has been Captain Blastoff, ending transmission.