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The Wild Storm #1, by Warren Ellis and Jon Davis-Hunt. This is kind of Ellis by the numbers so far, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. 2017 Ellis isn't prolific enough for "by the numbers" to feel tedious. When this series really gets going, it'll hopefully acquire more of a Wildstorm superhero sheen, not because that's some inherently interesting thing but because it that would give it the novelty to distinguish itself from the mass of other "Ellis in futurist mode" stories.







Uber: Invasion #3, by Kieron Gillen and Daniel Gete. This book is unusual for a war title in that it's so much about the actual warfare itself, as in macro-scale strategies and logistics of combat and numbers and all that stuff. The stuff most war fiction largely eschew in favor of the drama at the human level. I guess that's the advantage of alternate history war: Unlike stories of actual wars, readers don't already know the events so going over this kind of stuff doesn't feel redundant; unlike stories about fantasy world wars, there's all this real world detail to feed this kind of writing.





Date: 2017-02-16 09:16 pm (UTC)
mastermahan: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mastermahan
I think one of the reasons I don't care for Uber very much is that the beats just feel so repetitive, and these pages are a perfect example. How many times has it looked like the Allies are finally going to take out a battleship or otherwise score a meaningful, only for the Nazis to reveal they had an ace up their sleeve?

The Nazis almost always have an ace, the Allies almost never do, and the Allies almost always fall for it. Did any of you buy the narrator's assurance that this might really be the end for Siegfried?

Date: 2017-02-16 10:00 pm (UTC)
q99: (Default)
From: [personal profile] q99
-How many times has it looked like the Allies are finally going to take out a battleship or otherwise score a meaningful, only for the Nazis to reveal they had an ace up their sleeve?-

Not really that often. And I mean, in the Katyusha fight they *did* thwomp one of them, and Kursk they significantly hurt another. Neither were kills, but both were wins where the surprise aces were all Russian.

The Battle of London, yes. The battle at the end of part 1, yes.

Paris, we knew going in who had the advantage, characters stated it cleanly ahead of time.

Then the sub bases fight, not battleship related, but allied intelligence ace in the hole won that one. Spy in the uber project, Turning was the allied ace there. Patton could be considered another allied ace.

-The Nazis almost always have an ace, the Allies almost never do, and the Allies almost always fall for it. Did any of you buy the narrator's assurance that this might really be the end for Siegfried?-

I didn't read that as assurances- the emphasis on 'isolated' already suggested it was a "but...".

Sorta like how Katyusha had 'if conventional tank vs blitz tactics held...' before pointing out that against her, no, they didn't remotely hold, and even the Nazis having a second battleship *right there* was a cause for falling back rather than pressing and taking the risk.
Edited Date: 2017-02-16 10:14 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-02-17 07:23 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] pantswilder
You are totally right. I did not think for a second that Siegfried would die, or be harmed in any way that meaningfully changed the power balance. The writer said of the comic long ago that in the world of Uber Galactus would always beat Spiderman, taken to mean the strong would always beat the weak. But that only seems to apply when the Nazis are the strong. I mean, I get it, he is trying to make Nazis scary again, but it ends up feeling like a cheat. And the while the Nazi victories always dramatically change the balance of power, the handful of allied victories he begrudgingly allows are either strategically meaningless, or are later erased by dramatic reveals. The subs base victory does not alter in any way the fact that the allies are losing the battle of the Atlantic, the Kursk victory does nothing to slow Sigmund down while costing the Soviets all of their initial tankmen. And Maria's victory over Sieglinde seems to have made Sieglinde even more powerful (I'd argue her greater command of the Halo effect is much more important than being able to walk). And of course, I continue to hold that Maria has done more damage to the Allied cause than any German uber, by unilaterally removing the USSR from the war.

Heh, on that note, if every one of her new disciples is supposed to be a battleship, then the US/German conflict is a pointless preamble to the coming Soviet world domination. :)

Edited to add: There are two examples of Allies winning in a way that actually makes a difference (or at least suggests it will in the future): Freya/Stephanie escaping back to Britain and Turing's uber reveal to save Stephanie from the Geltmensch (of course timed to be after the geltmencsh has already gotten every single using secret). Without the first there would be no story and the second has not born any fruit yet, but I presume Stephanie is going to be the hero in the end.
Edited Date: 2017-02-17 09:59 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-02-18 01:58 am (UTC)
q99: (Default)
From: [personal profile] q99
-But that only seems to apply when the Nazis are the strong.-

They've suffered a number of defeats. Some major, some minor- like the raids on the sub bases allowed them to supply their European army again, which should pay off when we get around to Patton.

-the Kursk victory does nothing to slow Sigmund down while costing the Soviets all of their initial tankmen. -

It greatly slowed the Soviet advance for awhile, giving Katyusha time to fully develop, which let her take back all of Russia, the Ukraine, and half of Poland, and take out in her first action more German tankmen than the Soviets lost against Siegmund.

Territory-wise, that push was one of the biggest in the timeline (granted, not as significant as the UK surrender, but a lot of land).

-And of course, I continue to hold that Maria has done more damage to the Allied cause than any German uber, by unilaterally removing the USSR from the war. -

Yea, she didn't push the offensive, but what they are doing is building a sizable offensive force.

-
Heh, on that note, if every one of her new disciples is supposed to be a battleship, then the US/German conflict is a pointless preamble to the coming Soviet world domination. :)-

My impression is the one that was instructed to 'take care' of Maria is a Battleship, and most of the rest are destroyers and cruisers. Which is still a *rather* impressive force.

Date: 2017-02-18 04:50 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] pantswilder
I've read that, but I don't think it is an honest assessment. Not saying KG is lying, but that he is trying to sell these events as an answer for criticism that they were not originally written to answer.
Afterwards the British general SAYS the sub bases made a difference in the shipping war, but then later Britain is still starving and the germans still have plenty if subs for the us invasion. The narrative significance of that episode is really just forshadowing Leah's knee problem. Kursk and Kiev are framed as Russian victories, but again, what victory actually happens there? Kursk is.at draw at best, and so is Kiev. Neither "defeat" actually weakens the uberwehr is any substantail way. The purpose seems to be to redirect the germans west while maintaining the characters. Perhaps a 4th, more sympathetic german battleship could have existed and been killed for real by maria at Kiev, that would have made that feel like it actually meant something, while maintaining the grimdark feel.
Look, it is an incomplete story, and I am sure at the end the allies will win. But I am having a super hard time imagining that itwill feel earned. Instead, it will probably be the allies suddenly having a great idea, and the nazis suddenly doing a blind frontal assault with no real plan and stumbling into an unlikely trap. KG is a great writer, and the world building and character development is great, but the plot seems super cheatery.

Date: 2017-02-18 05:56 am (UTC)
q99: (Default)
From: [personal profile] q99
-Afterwards the British general SAYS the sub bases made a difference in the shipping war, but then later Britain is still starving and the germans still have plenty if subs for the us invasion.-

Loosening a blockade isn't going to solve problems overnight (especially when the UK surrenders), and it's not like losing supply bases eliminated the subs- they meant the subs couldn't run patrols from close in and had to make longer trips between patrols. We do know a lot more ships are getting through.

It doesn't take a lot of subs to transport a fairly small force (the blockade was shaken, they didn't have their navy destroyed), for that matter. The German invasion force is not plentiful.

-Neither "defeat" actually weakens the uberwehr is any substantail way. -

Uh, in short order Katyusha killed 100+ tankmen, kicked the German army out of Russia, the Ukraine, and half of Poland.

Now instead of being a short distance from Moscow and needing only some battleship usage to complete the push, they've lost all their gains and Moscow has time to train all the high potentials they've got- the high potentials we've been shown is a thing.

-Look, it is an incomplete story, and I am sure at the end the allies will win. But I am having a super hard time imagining that itwill feel earned. Instead, it will probably be the allies suddenly having a great idea, and the nazis suddenly doing a blind frontal assault with no real plan and stumbling into an unlikely trap. KG is a great writer, and the world building and character development is great, but the plot seems super cheatery.-

I'm on the other side, where I'm still picturing the allies as these two behemoths, I'm still mentally ticking the time and growing advantage in tankmen numbers that implies, and the allies having their 3-personal Battleship group coming into action soon- plus what Turning has, plus one wonders if Cohen is really out of action for good... she's not fully activated after all. The US almost certainly has more Battleship potentials, and maybe found some by now too.

Kieron has put a lot of Chekov's guns in allies hands. Some of them will likely misfire, but plenty won't, and they certainly don't need to rely on Axis blundering.

Less, the Axis do have a few more aces... the Japanese Battleship. And, it's always possible for another German uber discovery, but considering the Allies have Turning and better decoding skills, I'm betting all in all, we'll likely get 3~ more uber advances in the series, two allied and one axis, and I count more Allied aces in the hole than German ones.

The series has always been a race against the clock- time makes the Allieds invincible. Eventually, they'd reach the point where they'd be able to follow up a 300 Tankman attack with a cruiser strike force and a hundred heavies. The Axis have to knock them out before that, and any week that goes by without the Axis gaining an advantage, is the Axis losing the advantage.
Edited Date: 2017-02-18 05:57 am (UTC)

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