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10 thoughts on “The Starcrossed

  1. Johnny Johnny says:

    Vaguely remembering having this book described to me, I took an old, mangled copy of The Starcrossed from the shelf I chuckled at the resemblance to Harlan Ellison with regard to one of the characters depicted on the cover, but didn t really think anything of it until I reached the description of a certain door asornately carved that Queequeeg s sarcophagus p 28 That s Harlan s door my mind shouted to me As the saying goes, the penny dropped, and I remembered that Ben Bova not Vaguely remembering having this book described to me, I took an old, mangled copy of The Starcrossed from the shelf I chuckled at the resemblance to Harlan Ellison with regard to one of the characters depicted on the cover, but didn t really think anything of it until I reached the description of a certain door asornately carved that Queequeeg s sarcophagus p 28 That s Harlan s door my mind shouted to me As the saying goes, the penny dropped, and I remembered that Ben Bova not only knew Harlan Ellison but that Ben s late wife, the beautiful Barbara, was acquainted with him, as well Could this character be a parody of Harlan As the pages unfolded, I realized that this was, indeed, a character based on the young and angry Harlan Ellison Even references to the fictional Ron Gilbert s writing called back memories of Harlan s titles I mean, doesn t The Beast that Had No Mouth remind you of I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream or Repent something about a watchmaker remind you of Repent, Harlequin said the Ticktockman p 32 How about, a short story of mine based on a giant pterodactyl that attacks New York City p 33.A giant studio is on its last legs and needs a hit For all the wrong reasons, the studio opts to produce the show in Canada Financial shortcuts and corporate skullduggery enter into the picture to further complicate matters The technology seems to be the only solid element to the show since the actors cannot bring the bowdlerized scripts to life Disaster follows disaster such that this account would be funny even without the veneer of science fiction with which Bova adorns this mildly disguised tale of entertainment industry disaster.Okay, I guess I m really dense In the novel, the 3D holographic series production moves to Canada to save money and a lot of the expectations for the series making money is based on a specific piece of technology Oh, no Didn t Ellison work on a series in Canada Didn t Ben Bova serve as scientific advisor Wasn t there a cool technology involved from special effects guru Doug Trumbull known as Magicam Oh, no The name of that series was The Starlost I was completely taken in The Starlost was funded by 20th Century Fox which had just scored with The Poseidon Adventure about a doomed cruise liner The Starcrossed series in the novel was to be produced by Titanic Productions Harlan Ellison substituted his Cordwainer Bird pen name for his own when The Starlost came on Canadian television while Ron Gilbert substitutes his Victor Lawrence Talbot Frankenstein pseudonym for The Starcrossed script p 183 Both writers, real and fictional, end up winning writing awards for the original, uncut script Ellison was to duplicate that feat with the City on the Edge of Forever Star Trek script as it stood before it reached network censors.Yet, for all the real life bitterness satirized in the book, there are enough genuinely funny moments that even those who weren t aware of the ill fated Canadian television series will enjoy reading The Starcrossed I particularly liked the stereotype of the er titanic television critic Gloria Glory possessed a megatonnage unapproached by any other columnist Her viewers were fanatically devoted to her what Gloria said was in was in who Gloria said was out went hungry So, words such as fat, overweight, and diet had long since disappeared from Gloria s world They were as unspoken near her as descriptions of nasal protuberances went unsaid near Cyrano de Bergerac p 168 The Starcrossed isn t Ben Bova s best novel by any means, but it is probably his funniest And, it must have been a great catharsis for him to write it


  2. Christopher Conlon Christopher Conlon says:

    A Reader s Guide to THE STARCROSSED by Ben Bova Ben Bova s THE STARCROSSED is a slight but delightful novel detailing the mis adventures of a group of Hollywood industry pros as they attempt to create a new science fiction TV series As some other reviewers here have pointed out, the story has the feel of an extended in joke, which in fact it is Fortunately it s not very in, and a small amount of fun preparation will assist contemporary readers in getting the humor and the most important A Reader s Guide to THE STARCROSSED by Ben Bova Ben Bova s THE STARCROSSED is a slight but delightful novel detailing the mis adventures of a group of Hollywood industry pros as they attempt to create a new science fiction TV series As some other reviewers here have pointed out, the story has the feel of an extended in joke, which in fact it is Fortunately it s not very in, and a small amount of fun preparation will assist contemporary readers in getting the humor and the most important references There are two preliminary steps any prospective reader of the novel should take before opening it.1 Watch an episode of THE STARLOST, a notoriously terrible 1970s TV series created by Harlan Ellison but, due to interference of many kinds, soon disowned by him which is why his credit reads Created by Cordwainer Bird, Ellison s dismissive pseudonym THE STARLOST is available on DVD and entire episodes can be viewed on YouTube I recommend if that s the word the pilot, Voyage of Discovery It represents 49 minutes of your life you ll never get back, but it s amusing in a ghastly sort of way.2 Read Ellison s essay Somehow, I Don t Think We in Kansas, Toto, available in several of the author s books including STALKING THE NIGHTMARE and THE ESSENTIAL ELLISON It details, often hilariously, the real life saga behind the making and undoing of THE STARLOST Once you ve completed these steps, you ll be ready to enjoy Bova s amusing novel Keep in mind as you read that Ron Gabriel is Bova s Ellison character it should be obvious and that Bova himself, who was the mostly ignored science advisor on THE STARLOST, appears as Bill Oxnard The novel, it should be noted, is only marginally science fiction, despite the marketing claims of the original hardcover edition s dust jacket The book is set in the near future, but other than 3 D television and L.A smog clouds that are now perfumed, there s little extrapolation of anything here THE STARCROSSED is a Hollywood showbiz satire, and a good one Not a great one, admittedly, but then the original situation bordered so much on the satirical to begin with that perhaps it was impossible to really satirize it totally effectively Yet it s a fun novel, especially if you know the background Once upon a time, of course, the events behind the misbegotten STARLOST series were well known, but now they ve faded into history, as has Bova s novel The book is long out of print though it can be had in a Kindle edition as part of a Bova omnibus called LAUGH LINES But for fans of Ben Bova, Harlan Ellison, and the stranger byways of 1970s television, THE STARCROSSED is well worth a look


  3. Christina K Christina K says:

    I have a soft spot for this one, because I have a love for techie tales of behind the scenes TV series stories This one does read, now that I m older, as a piece of True Story Hollywood fic, in some ways but it s so funny, and the tropes of different scifi series are used to such fun effect, that you probably won t care In a near future with rejuvenating youth treatments, really great cameras, and the same kinds of people, a little scifi show that started off as one thing morphs into a totall I have a soft spot for this one, because I have a love for techie tales of behind the scenes TV series stories This one does read, now that I m older, as a piece of True Story Hollywood fic, in some ways but it s so funny, and the tropes of different scifi series are used to such fun effect, that you probably won t care In a near future with rejuvenating youth treatments, really great cameras, and the same kinds of people, a little scifi show that started off as one thing morphs into a totally different genre with the efforts of its director, scheming assistant producer, stars, blackmailed headwriter, technical advisor, and the VP of programming The characters are what makes it there s a trio of people to root for, and a couple of very amusingly hissable villains If you ve ever been any kind of scifi TV fan, you ll find this an enjoyable read


  4. Umlaut James Umlaut James says:

    I don t even know where to start, I can t believe Ben Bova actually wrote this book If you are Bova fan, ignore this book Book is based on a entertainment industry, it seems Bova was somehow involved with Entertainment industry and came up with this story where group of people are trying to create a new show and everything is just going wrong After reading this book, i asked myself, wish i had read the reviews prior to reading this.


  5. Bill Seitz Bill Seitz says:

    Shows the TV industry just like his Cyberbooks shows the publishing industry A total mess.Classic punchline ending for the book.


  6. Eden Thompson Eden Thompson says:

    From my book blog www.JetBlackDragonfly.blogspot.comI love cheesy sci fi TV, but surprisingly had never heard of The Starlost Created by the great science fiction writer Harlan Ellison, the special effects wizard Douglas Trumball, and science consultant Ben Bova, The Starlost was a hour long TV series shot in 1973 It showed in syndication, but was produced by Canada s number two network CTV, so you know it s going to be super quality already The story goes that they created this great show id From my book blog www.JetBlackDragonfly.blogspot.comI love cheesy sci fi TV, but surprisingly had never heard of The Starlost Created by the great science fiction writer Harlan Ellison, the special effects wizard Douglas Trumball, and science consultant Ben Bova, The Starlost was a hour long TV series shot in 1973 It showed in syndication, but was produced by Canada s number two network CTV, so you know it s going to be super quality already The story goes that they created this great show idea, and once it was sold there was no budget, so they had minimal sets, bad scripts and no time for retakes Camera appeared rolling into the shot Don t worry about it They d shoot it fast and show it once on TV and everyone moves on.Now, The Starlost is available on a 16 show, 4 disc remastered DVD And yes, while the sets are one step above cardboard such as upside down plastic garbage cans to created a space console , the acting is almost non existent, and the models of the planets are, to quote Secretary of State Hilary Clinton so super lame , it has a certain charm that s endearing Cheese Factor 5 Engage Harlan Ellison removed his name from the credits they used instead Cordwainer Bird , and Ben Bova was so ticked at being involved he wrote a rare comedic novel The Starcrossed The names have been changed to protect the innocent, but basically, in the future TV is 3D They come up with a new 3 D TV show based on an outer space Romeo and Juliet recycling an idea that they couldn t sell To save money Titanic Productions decides to film in Canada, as it s even easier than Mexico The producer s latest girlfriend is hired as the starlet and a Canadian hockey star is signed to play Romeo, never mind he has a thick French accent and can barely read The scripts are written by high school students in a contest Before they start filming, the studio sees it will be a flop and bets all the production money on a football game The crew is left to put together some kind of show, which gets released to scathing reviews.Pretty funny scenarios and crazy characters If you know the history that came before The Starcrossed novel it s even funnier So bad it s good


  7. Eric Green Eric Green says:

    This is a hilariously slightly fictionalized account of one of the most frustrating episodes of Ben Bova and Harlan Ellison s lives their involvement with a Canadian production called The Starlost that lasted one very forgettable season before disappearing forever If you encountered that show before and as a viewer of anything even remotely science fictional during the 1970 s, I did this is a hilarious tale of just how it got to be so bad, complete with wooden acting, ridiculous scri This is a hilariously slightly fictionalized account of one of the most frustrating episodes of Ben Bova and Harlan Ellison s lives their involvement with a Canadian production called The Starlost that lasted one very forgettable season before disappearing forever If you encountered that show before and as a viewer of anything even remotely science fictional during the 1970 s, I did this is a hilarious tale of just how it got to be so bad, complete with wooden acting, ridiculous scripts, and really bad special effects If you never heard of The Starlost , well, get lost this probably isn t the book for you But for those of us who were subjected to that terrible show back in the day, this book will have you howling as you connect the dots to just how something that bad could actually make it onto network television


  8. Josh Josh says:

    I placed this on my SF F shelf, but it is not, in and of itself, science fiction It is, instead, a fictionalized account of the author s experiences in the making of a troubled and short lived science fiction television show.The Starlost is the show award winning pilot script, great and grand ideas that ought to be redone, but with a larger budget andpatience.The Starcrossed is by turns funny and maddening, but I don t know how it would play to somebody unfamiliar with the show and so I placed this on my SF F shelf, but it is not, in and of itself, science fiction It is, instead, a fictionalized account of the author s experiences in the making of a troubled and short lived science fiction television show.The Starlost is the show award winning pilot script, great and grand ideas that ought to be redone, but with a larger budget andpatience.The Starcrossed is by turns funny and maddening, but I don t know how it would play to somebody unfamiliar with the show and some of the backstory


  9. Leigh Ann Wallace Leigh Ann Wallace says:

    Wonderful book Hysterical


  10. Craig Craig says:

    This is a very, very funny novelization of the real life events around the production of a very, very bad cable sf series from the 1970 s, The Starlost It was created by Harlan Ellison, and Bova served as a consultant Ellison wrote a very good script which was novelized by Edward Bryant as Phoenix Without Ashes , but the producers did things their way and the result was a failure I d recommend it to anyone who ever wondered why good books can turn out to be such poor films.


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The Starcrossed ❮Read❯ ➫ The Starcrossed Author Ben Bova – Thomashillier.co.uk Bova served as the science advisor for the failed television series The Starlost, leaving in disgust after the airing of the first episode His novel The Starcrossed, loosely based on his experiences, Bova served as the science advisor for the failed television series The Starlost, leaving in disgust after the airing of the first episodeHis novel The Starcrossed, loosely based on his experiences, featured a thinly veiled characterization of his friend and colleague Harlan Ellison Bova dedicated the novel to Cordwainer Bird , the pen name Harlan Ellison uses when he does not want to be associated with a television or film project.

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  • 223 pages
  • The Starcrossed
  • Ben Bova
  • English
  • 24 June 2017
  • 051504105X

About the Author: Ben Bova

Ben Bova was born on November , in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania In , while attending Temple University, he married Rosa Cucinotta, they had a son and a daughter He would later divorce Rosa in In that same year he married Barbara Berson RoseBova is an avid fencer and organized Avco Everett s fencing club He is an environmentalist, but rejects LuddismBova was a technical writer for Project Vanguard and later for Avco Everett in the s when they did research in lasers and fluid dynamics It was there that he met Arthur R Kantrowitz later of the Foresight InstituteIn he became editor of Analog Science Fiction after John W Campbell s death After leaving Analog, he went on to edit Omni during In he wrote the screenplay for an episode of the children s science fiction television series Land of the Lost entitled The SearchBova was the science advisor for the failed television series The Starlost, leaving in disgust after the airing of the first episode His novel The Starcrossed was loosely based on his experiences and featured a thinly veiled characterization of his friend and colleague Harlan Ellison He dedicated the novel to Cordwainer Bird , the pen name Harlan Ellison uses when he does not want to be associated with a television or film projectBova is the President Emeritus of the National Space Society and a past President of Science fiction and Fantasy Writers of America SFWABova went back to school in the s, earning an MA in communications in and a PhD in Bova has drawn on these meetings and experiences to create fact and fiction writings rich with references to spaceflight, lasers, artificial hearts, nanotechnology, environmentalism, fencing and martial arts, photography and artistsBova is the author of over a hundred and fifteen books, non fiction as well as science fiction In , he was the Author Guest of Honor at the th World Science Fiction Convention Chicon Hollywood has started to take an interest in Bova s works once again, in addition to his wealth of knowledge about science and what the future may look like In , he was hired as a consultant by both Stuber Parent Productions to provide insight into what the world is to look like in the near future for their upcoming film Repossession Mambo released as Repo Men starring Jude Law and Forest Whitaker and by Silver Pictures in which he provided consulting services on the feature adaptation of Richard Morgan s Altered Carbontp uscmillan author benbova.