Monday, January 13, 2014
The Red List
There are a lot of laughs here, many of them dependent on at least some familiarity with the storytelling tropes of Star Trek and its progeny, many based on a much more general appraisal of television production. You probably know who the Redshirts are already even if you've only got a passing familiarity with Star Trek; now, you get to meet them up close and personal.
A lot of people at the 2013 World Convention of Science Fiction must have really loved Redshirts, as it won the Hugo Award for Best Novel of 2012. I didn't love it, and I kept waiting for more narrative and metafictional twists that never arrived, but Redshirts is still an enjoyable if slight and somewhat facile read. Like certain science-fiction television shows, it acts a lot smarter than it really is. Finding out in the acknowledgements that Scalzi worked on the woeful Stargate: Universe (which he praises here) really doesn't help. Recommended.