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The Spiders, Part 3.5
August 8, 2003 12:07 PM   Subscribe

The Spiders, Part 3.5 (al Djinn), the latest installment in Patrick Farley's alternate history of the Afghan/U.S. conflict, is live. If you encounter a "Temporarily Unavailable" error, try the mirror server. There were previous threads on Part 1 and Part 2.
posted by homunculus (11 comments total)

 
Featurettes:
Extra Scene 1: Lactation


Well, it certainly sounds promising. I'll check it out.
posted by trondant at 12:17 PM on August 8, 2003


You know, I enjoyed the previous parts - it's well written and executed - and I'm sure I'll enjoy reading this one. But really, is decentralized sci-fi techno-war-wank significantly better than the non-decentralized, non-sci-fi version? I mean, apart from the specific technical elements, this is pretty much the standard fantasy of precision, civilian-friendly warfare that the real military puts out, right?
posted by pascal at 1:41 PM on August 8, 2003


[This is good]
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:43 PM on August 8, 2003


Fantastic stuff.
posted by GriffX at 2:48 PM on August 8, 2003


Meanwhile, in the real Afghanistan:

Afghan Political Violence on the Rise

Afghans on Edge of Chaos
posted by homunculus at 2:54 PM on August 8, 2003


OT, I found this fascinating: in a part of northern Pakistan near the Afghan border which used to be called Kafiristan, the Kalasha people are struggling to survive. The Kalasha claim to be descendants of the armies of Alexander the Great, and were the inspiration for the people in The Man Who Would Be King. I had no idea that Kipling's story had some basis in truth until I read this article.
posted by homunculus at 3:08 PM on August 8, 2003


I mean, apart from the specific technical elements, this is pretty much the standard fantasy of precision, civilian-friendly warfare that the real military puts out, right?

I dunno, Pascal, I'd argue that Farley's willing to ask--although perhaps not answer--the sort of thorny moral questions that are absent from the whole "techno thriller" genre, and it's this, more than anything, that elevates "Spiders" above the status of Tom Clancy with spiffier tech. YMMV, of course.
posted by arto at 3:29 PM on August 8, 2003


A great story, beautifully drawn, and thoughtfully written.

"If you remember anything I say from this night, remember this: (Islam) can only rise if you and your generation reject superstition, and reclaim Islam's legacy of science."
-- From The Spiders : Page 11 : Epilogue

That's not only a sound bit of advice for the Middle East, but for the Western World as well.
posted by stevis at 3:47 PM on August 8, 2003


Having read it now, I have to say this was the best one yet. I was absolutely knocked out by his use of the medium. Farley's writing and drawing is visibly improving too. I do still have this basic, niggling issue with the overall story idea, but the execution can't really be faulted. Looking forward to the next one...
posted by pascal at 9:16 PM on August 8, 2003


I mean, apart from the specific technical elements, this is pretty much the standard fantasy of precision, civilian-friendly warfare that the real military puts out, right?

There were ideas in this comic that I'd never seen before. I read a fair amount of speculative fiction so this is harder to do than you might expect. The plot and character development are derived believably from the story's technological premise -- the bit about being able to see yourself in the moment in which you kill, for example, I found pretty disturbing. And yeah, his use of the medium is very good. It's not just a comic book, it's definitely a Webcomic.
posted by kindall at 11:42 PM on August 8, 2003


For what it's worth, Farley was strongly and vocally against the war in Iraq (and he made some political comics to that effect).
posted by Tlogmer at 9:13 PM on August 9, 2003


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