Monday, September 10, 2012

Book Bitch: Mission Earth 1 (TRIGGER WARNING)

So I've been writing these things first thing in the morning, lately. It lets me get the day started on the right foot, because I am that kind of bitch, and also it gets the badness out of the way first.

HOWEVER, yesterday (today) was Sunday. And I work on Sunday mornings. Those of you who have read my blog a long time will know that I work for a boss who is sometimes...difficult. This, compounded with the CITY WIDE POWER OUTAGE yesterday afternoon means that I am writing this at midnight.

When I am also pretty damn drunk. Because I can be. I don't have to go anywhere on Monday, and usually I wind up buying a bottle of something new anyway (One of my hobbies is alcohol, a side effect of a boss who, more often than not, hands me something monsterously intoxicating and says "Try this". I have a very large collection of liquor, mostly fancy things like St. Germaine) and today the Boss was difficult. (and by difficult I mean she called at least one person a retard because we didn't notice where she'd moved the brooms to this week). So I am medicating.

And I am glad I am drunk. I need to be, to make it through these chapters without killing somebody. Ron has pissed me off today, my friends. Oh, yes, indeed he has.

Last time we were here (deep breath) We heard from Ron, a censor, a robot (who can't swear) and the narrator, who is Soltan Gris and who works for the CIA, Jettero Heller is Space Elvis and he Redeems People who are evil murder evil evil (excepting our narrator) The Countess Krak is evil murder evil evil and hotter than the surface of the sun, and we all must be Rescued From Ourselves by Space Elvis.

Oh god, people. Oh god, oh god oh god, I will need more alcohol before this chapter is over.

In a more specific "Previously", the Countess Krak went from this:

to this:

in about one point five eight seconds. And now she is meeting Jettero Heller for the very first time. Jet begins exploring the Countess's equiptment, which is covered in an awful layer of grime and which is all (our narrator assures us) straight out of Torturers R' Us. The Countess starts to upbraid Soltan for being five minutes late, and then...

...she stopped. Her eyes were on Jettero Heller. 

By the way? Jettero no longer looks like a word. Which is sad, because it wasn't much of one to begin with. Continueing...

She was just standing there, watching him. There was no expression on her face. There never was. This female was as beautiful as a Goddess on the altar of a church, but every bit as cold as that carved stone.

BTW, and just FYI, Hubbard had a serious thing for the Goddess Diana. As in, he was in deep with occultists (As in Alastar Crowley had to tell one of Hubbard's best buddies that he thought LRH was full of shit, and the dude might want to distance himself pronto. Let me repeat that: Alestair Crowley thought L. Ron Hubbard was full of shit.) he named a boat Diana, he named his daughter Diana, and his religion is founded on a book called Dianetics. Diane-tics.

And that is the last time I will bring up the Church that Shall Not Be Named. I promise.

So the Countess of Terrible Beauty is following Jettero around the room like she's a fucking heliotrope, and Jet abrubtly abandons his exploration of the torture chamber, spins a hundred pound punching bag around on his finger like it's a fucking basket ball, does a triple axle off the handlebars, nails the landing, and says this to the evil murder evil evil Countess Krak:

(Text reproduced EXACTLY as written:)

"HelLO!" he said. "Hello, hello, HELLO! What is a beautiful creature like you doing in a place like this?"


I'm getting another drink now.
 In his defence, Soltan also bangs his head against the wall. But what does the Countess Krak do?

She just sat a low, strained voice...she said, "You should not talk to me...I am not worthy of you...I am rotten. I am vile. I am not fit for you to talk to...that is the first friendly thing anyone has said to me in three years!"

And then she breaks down sobbing.

...yeah. Hey, Ron?


So while the Countess has her breakdown, Soltan rigs up Jettero's language lesson. He needs to learn English.  Soltan decides that nothing less than an Ivy League accent will do for Space Elvis, rigs that up, and hands the learning helmet over to Jettero. Who starts listening to the tape, says "Fuck this shit", and then re-rigs the Super Space Learning Helmet to teach him the English language in thirty seconds.

Let me repeat that. Jettero Heller. Learns. The English Language. In thirty. fucking. seconds.

 And then the evil murder evil evil Countess says this:

"Isn't he beautiful?"

Yeah. They're going to fuck in about seventy pages.


Alright, guys. Fair warning? If you are bothered by a discussion of the R word? (that being rape) DO NOT READ PAST THE CUT. I AM NOT KIDDING. There may, in fact, be TMI about your friendly reviewer today, because I am about to bring up things that I have never brought up in public before. I will not judge you, there are things I can't handle, either. So I repeat: IF YOU HAVE ISSUES WITH DISCUSSING SEXUAL ASSAULT, DO NOT READ PAST THIS POINT. NOTHING AFTER THE CUT IS GOING TO BE VERY FUN.

Here is a picture of a cute kitten. If you're opting out of the next chapter, enjoy it, instead:

So the rest of ya'll are good with this? Okay. Moving on.

So Soltan, realizing that his charge is about to put his sausage into a female blender, tries to set the record straight. Apparently the Countess's real name is...I am not making this up...Lissus Moam. Ron names his characters by pulling fucking scrabble tiles out of a fucking bag. Lissus. Moam. 

And then things go downhill. Way, way, way downhill.

Let me first remind you that this book was written by a major religious leader in the last year of his life. This is how L. Ron Hubbard thought and felt about these issues right before he died. This is as close as you are EVER going to get to his true feelings on many subjects. I want you to fully appreciate this.

Anyway, after the Countess trained children how to kill (allegedly) she was sent to Spiteos. Where, being a statuesque beauty imprisoned among criminals recruited as prison guards, the men there tried to rape her. Repeatedly.

She defended herself by killing the men.

This is presented as being evidence of her evil murder evil evil nature. 

I am about to relate something that I have NEVER told ANYONE, that I probably wouldn't write about if I were not pretty drunk right now. And I am dead serious. If you have ANY ISSUES with the topic of sexual assault AT ALL, stop reading right now.

I was sexually assaulted two years ago. By a total stranger, under circumstances that could TECHNICALLY be considered consensual. As in I did not say "FUCK NO" but I also didn't have much of a choice. When your choice is either "agree to do it or disagree and do it anyway," your options are pretty damn limited. I was also robbed during the course of this. Nobody did anything about it. I called the police, and they were all like "Sucks to be you, sunshine." The one thing I remember clearly was that "Second Chance" by Shinedown was playing on the radio while this was going on. I cannot listen to that song without being instantly transported back to those circumstances. I've tried. I start hyperventilating by the time we get to the chorus. Which is sad, because I really, really like that song.

It's almost two years to the day, as a matter of fact.

My point in relating this? FUCK YES, YOU KILL THE SON OF A BITCH. Or "that bitch", if that happens to apply. (Because women do rape men, and it's just as fucking unforgivable as when a man rapes a woman) I know that's not PC, I know that you're supposed to be all "capitol punishment is wrong, I am a pacifist" in this modern era, ANYBODY who would treat another human being like Kleenex has no value in this lifetime whatsoever. 

The whole source of Countess Krak's evil nature is that she kills men who try to rape her. This is not how it is presented in the book. It is presented as "men who make a pass at her" and implies that if she doesn't want you screwing her, she will rip your balls off and shove them down your throat. But if you rip Hubbard's god-awful bias off the text, what you get is a woman is evil if she defends herself from RAPE via violent actions resulting in death. 

Oh, but my faithful blog readers, it gets fucking better.  See, I fucking know that this is Ron's opinion of women. Not think. Not suspect. I fucking know it. It all boils down to one line of dialogue in Soltan's narration, where he quotes the Countess's response to one such attack:

"I am a virgin and you will apologize."

"I am a virgin and you will apologize." 

"I am a virgin and you will apologize."

What gives the Countess the right to defend herself from an unwanted advance? Not the fact that she doesn't want it. No. She's a virgin. The Countess isn't protecting herself. She's protecting her value to men. Virginity is like the pop-top seal on a jar of pickles. It's much more valuable to the consumer than it is to the jar.

Let me link you back to my Pre-Criminal Education post so you have a point of reference for this next bit. The problem with implying that a certain demographic (IE virgins) are allowed to protect themselves from unwanted advances is that you are also implying that other demographics are not. And in this case, Hubbard is implying, via omission, that if the Countess had dated before she was arrested for teaching children how to rob banks, her hoochie would be fair game.

And you know where I said that she and Jet were going to be fucking in seventy pages? I said that because I skimmed forward to that part, counted the pages, and then returned to the review. Her killing people to preserve her virginity is treated as a non-issue. Something that every girl ought to do, so that joy an innocence may continue in this universe. Not to preserve her well-being, health or life. No. Her virginity is the issue here. 

Because the Countess has to be a clean vessel for Jettero Heller's penis. Because virginity is the only thing that matters.

I'm not going to go all "I am woman, hear me roar," mostly because I think the worst thing we have done to sex-crime victims in the last hundred years is to limit that status to women and maybe men who are raped by other men. I'm not going to go on a long rant about how bleeding fucking stupid this is. I'm just going to say this to the wonderful, progressive, far thinking author of this flying brick:

Fuck you, Ron. Fuck you.

We go back to the fun parts of the book tomorrow.  I promise. In the meantime:

It doesn't make it okay, but it makes it better for now.

1 comment:

  1. Submitting to threats is a form of self-defence, not consent. It's terrifying how many people don't or won't understand that.

    I'm sorry you were hurt. I'm relieved you weren't killed.