Thursday, September 16, 2021

Night Hunter 1: The Stalking by Robert Faulcon

Night Hunter 1
The Stalking
by Robert Faulcon (Robert Holdstock)
1987 Diamond Books

Suburban England Evil Dead as if written by Nigel Kneale. Paranormal researcher Dan Brady is left for dead after his house is invaded, his wife violated with a golden scepter, and his family kidnapped. Once out of his coma he returns to the house and finds another researcher whose family met the same fate. The two build up the psychic defenses of the house against attacks by astral elementals.

Shades of Quatermass and Stone Tape with the combination of psychical research mixed with ancient folk horror, with the violence ramped up as bodies are ripped apart by unseen forces. Dan Brady is a bit harder edged than your average occult detective type, placing his path of vengeance ahead of uncovering the plot using supernatural forces.

Paperback from Amazon.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Series Showdown: Alien Nation vs Highlander

The Alien Nation installment was true to the characters and added depth to their background, while Highlander was less deep than a standard TV episode. The motherhummers behead the immortals - there can be only one!

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Cap Kennedy 9: Earth Enslaved by Gregory Kern

Cap Kennedy 9
Earth Enslaved
by Gregory Kern (E.C. Tubb)
1974 DAW

Cap Kennedy is a space opera series similar to Perry Rhodan. Kennedy is our square jaw leader who leads a crew through space in his ship, the Mordain, investigating and facing dangers to Earth. In this installment, Kennedy and his crew pass through an artificial asteroid called the Torus into an alternate timeline where women rule Earth on the ground and aliens controlled the skies, using cyborg space forts run by the brains of male human slaves.  Kennedy has to repair his ship, find a way around the alien defenses, and destroy the Torus before it destroys both Earths.

This could have stood to be longer, as there are some interesting concepts but not much room to play around. Cap mainly runs around shooting people unconscious with his sedative needler gun. Not much in the way of description; we have no idea what the aliens look like, and in future alternate Earth you can hitch a ride in a truck or steal clothes from a line of laundry. The end is resolved way to quick by hacking the alien defenses in a more believable manner than Independence Day.

Paperback from AbeBooks

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Series Showdown: Black Berets vs The Killers

MIA stories are amongst my least favorite action subgenres, and the closer to an actual war a story is the more my interest dwindles. Despite this, both of these entries come in strong. I'll likely give the Black Berets another read in the future, but for this round the Killers force the Black Berets to lick the mud off it's boots.

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Heavies: Gene Hackman

 Gene Hackman chewing the scenery as a religious zealot serial killer in Hawk.

And as an angry beat cop on Brenner

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Highlander: The Element of Fire by Jason Henderson

Highlander: The Element of Fire
by Jason Henderson
1995, Aspect

An original story set in the world of the Highlander TV series. We get both Duncan and Connor MacLeod and their run-ins through time with the immortal pirate Khordas, who refuses to participate in The Game and instead starts a salamander cult.

I don't know how the rules of this stuff work since the original movie, or why there are still immortals around, and know just enough to know that there are no good answers and the franchise gets more confusing the more they try to explain it.

Decent fight aboard a burning ship at the end, but the rest is aimless and uneventful.

Paperback from Amazon

Sunday, August 29, 2021

Series Showdown: Falcon vs Wolfshead

Wolfshead might have stood a better chance if I'd started from the beginning, but Falcon had less filler and more/better action. Flacon cleaves Wolfshead in twain and moves up the rankings.