‘24’ TV show could learn something from ‘24’ novels (Book commentary)

You know, when I watch “24,” I usually make fun of it, and I don’t get any satisfaction from doing that. But it’s different from other downhill-progressing shows, because every season represents a completely fresh start. Because each season is a single day, “24” Season 8 (set for a January launch on Fox) wouldn’t have to reference ANY of the previous seven seasons/days; it could simply concentrate on being really good.

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How crucial is continuity in franchise storytelling? (Commentary)

I’m curious to hear from my readers on this one: How important is it to you that a franchise has continuity between each of its installments? I ask this because two of my favorite sagas are “Star Wars,” in which every story fits on a coherent timeline, and “Terminator,” which has launched three distinct timelines since 2001 between movies, TV and books.

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Mystery, mysticism and politics: Denning’s ‘Abyss’ continues the ‘Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi’ series (Book review)

The early “Star Wars” novels — “Splinter of the Mind’s Eye” and the “Han Solo Adventures” — followed the lead of “A New Hope,” where adventure was the writer’s main concern. With “Heir to the Empire,” the tone shifted toward political and military maneuvering, and “Star Wars” became associated with those genres even more with the prequel films and “The Clone Wars.”

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Preston & Child do their usual, compelling ‘Dance’ — this time with zombies (Book review)

I used to describe Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child as “like Michael Crichton, only better.” I now know that’s a simplistic comparison, but it’s still useful. The late, great Crichton’s “Lost World” came out in 1995, and earlier that same year, Preston and Child made their collaborative debut with “Relic.” Crichton’s book was a theme piece about dinosaur society; Preston and Child’s book was a wild ride about — as it turned out — a guy who basically turned into a dinosaur.

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Entertainment I discovered after getting a tip from someone: A top 15 list (Commentary)

Part of the purpose of this blog is to let you know about cool stuff in the entertainment world. The blog’s main purpose, of course, is it gives me something to do. But also, it’s nice to think that I might encourage someone to look into a good TV show or movie or band or book every now and then.

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‘Star Wars’ meets ‘Jurassic Park’ in Christie Golden’s ‘Fate of the Jedi: Omen’ (Book review)

“Fate of the Jedi” is the third multi-author “Star Wars” series from Del Rey, following the Yuuzhan Vong series and the Jacen-turns-evil series. The first two can be labeled interesting experiments, but the format is really clicking this time around.

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So much for the Jedi Purge: In ‘No Prisoners,’ Traviss introduces more spin-off Jedi (and I’m not complaining) (Book review)

I’m not going to argue that the “Star Wars” prequel movies are as good as the original trilogy. They aren’t. However, the prequel era has added layers to “Star Wars” we couldn’t have dreamed of when it was a simple — albeit great — drama of good versus evil back in the early 1980s.

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