Archive for the IA – Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) Category

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Negatives and Rating

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 16, 2006 by jedicouncil

Today was EXTREMELY busy and I just felt that I didn’t have a chance to sit down and even breathe.  I left for work around ten-forty a.m.  Work was definetly steady today and it just seemed like people didn’t stop coming.  I barely had an opportunity to even get the fryers filtered.  One thing that happened that really ticked me off was a “drive off”.  I will give you an idea what a drive off is.  We had a guy come to the window today and order ten Junior Bacon Cheeseburgers.  So, we got working right away.  I started cooking meat faster, we had the rolls set up and we were ready to make them.  Then, when we went to have the guy pay or look out the window, the car drove off.  What a frickin’ bummer!!  All that work for nothing and to make matters worse, I just burned off a whole bunch of meat for no reason at all.  It really ticks me off when people do it thinking it’s funny and a good prank.  I think more fast food restaurants should have cameras at the drive-thru to avoid this type of behavior.

I came home to complete chaos at four o’clock.  We struggled to get dinner together and scrambled to eat on time.  We pretty much got done with that, caught up for fifteen minutes on the day and then started to get ready to leave.  I headed out to Vestal where I had my first opportunity to really run a portion of rehearsal.  I through some changes at the kids and some difficult moments and they handled it all well.  I like having a band that seems like they can think on the go.  My band that I directed before was very much that way and it helps when you get to competition time and you need to make changes.  Having bands that can make changes to tempo or even sets fairly easily really add to the level of difficulty of material that we can throw at them.

I came home tonight and continued to work on my Wookie Bowcaster.  More sanding and more sanding.  It’s going to take a while, but I think I’ll have all the sanding done by Friday night which means I can start working on the other portions of it by the weekend.

So, it’s time to talk about the negatives of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears and my rating…..

Negatives:  There were many negatives of this book.  So many that I’m not sure where to begin.  First off, the chapters seem like they weren’t planned out very well and some of the chapters were almost completely pointless.  Why bother having a chapter that is all of three paragraphs long and only one page?  Couldn’t that information have been folded into another chapter?  It just urks me when it seems like a book author isn’t organized when it comes to writing a book and that they decide that information doesn’t need to be chunked in an organized manner.  Second, there was way too much information at times!!  There were some great explanations of creatures and plant-life in this book and then out of nowhere, Bears goes on and on and on explaining more about the topice he’s writing about.  Just too much information to take in at times.  I don’t know if he writes this way in other books, but it’s boring to a reader.  Third, I didn’t like the way that the Sekotans were displayed.  They seemed passive and then aggressive.  It’s almost as if this entire species has some form of bi-polar disorder.  I’m not sure this is the way they were meant to be displayed, but this is the way they came acrossed.  Fourth, there was too much “intrigue” in the book.  Too many things weren’t explained.  So, for all of the explanations that were made, there was no explanation made about how the ships are made.  No explanation about what else is going on, on the planet.  No explanation as to the real connection that Anakin is having with the creatures and plant life.  It made it seem as if the book were dragging on and on.  Finally, I really hate how they explained how the idea of the Death Star came about.  I really don’t think the Death Star would have been based on some plant-based planet that can move all over the universe.  Instead I believe that it had more evil intent and purposes right from the beginning.  That’s like saying the idea for the nuclear bomb came from the Garden of Eden.  Two totally opposite places and concepts that supposedly led to one purpose. 

The negatives of this book added up against the positives, and this book could be ignored entirely and then people could still understand the Star Wars Extended Universe.  So, I am saying that if you want to, and you’re not caught up to me, skip this book!  That’s why this book got a:

“Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears:  2

 Starting tommorrow, we will start reviewing “Star Wars:The Approaching Storm” by Alan Dean Foster.  I will be skipping over “Star Wars:Outbound Flight” by Timothy Zahn as it is not out on paperback yet.  I will review that book after reviewing Alan Dean Foster’s book, at which point Zahn’s book should be out on paperback.

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‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Chapter 60

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 16, 2006 by jedicouncil

Well, Heather and I made a decision last night not to go to church today because this is really the first weekend we have ever had to ourselves since school left out.  So, we decided to take advantage and to get some work done around the house before we have to work like crazy and get the house together for next weekend when Heather’s grandmother comes to see the house.  So, I spent the entire morning mowing and weed-whacking the front and back yard.  It’s the first time I’ve had to do it in about a week and a half, so it really needed to be done.  I was exhausted, so I came in and took a shower and got some lunch and Heather and I went downstairs to watch “Fun With Dick and Jane” together since Heather wanted to watch the movie before I took it back.  We then watched the Nascar Race at Indiannapolis for a little while and then headed to A.C. Moore as Heather needed to get some yarn.  They didn’t have the color she needed, so a trip to Wal-Mart ensued.  We found the yarn and one of our first Christmas gifts for this year.  We found a Wal-Mart Exclusive PS-2 Larry Boy game for Austin for Christmas.  It was too tempting to resist for twenty dollars.  So, that’s one Christmas gift down, about a billion to go.  We stopped at Wendy’s got my schedule and some seriously discounted dinner and then came home to eat it and finish watching the race.  Unfortunately, Robby Gordon spun out on the last lap of the race and ended in 35th place.  Anyway, we ate dinner downstairs in front of the T.V. (which we don’t do very often with the kids around) and then worked on cleaning up part of the house.  I worked on my Powerpoint presentation for my blogging and podcasting class that I’m teaching tommorrow and then we started to watch our usual T.V. shows like “Big Brother:All Stars”, “Deadwood”, and “Life With Louie”.  We then headed to bed to get ready for a whole bunch of work that needs to be done around the house starting tommorrow.

Onto talking about Chapter 60 of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears…..

Chapter 60:  Tarkin was smug as he and Seinar entered the bridge of the mine-ship.  He couldn’t wait to get back to the “Einem” to finish what he started.  Tarkin looked on the viewscreen and was not happy with the progress of the battle.  They also began to see an atmosphere and physical change on the planet that looked like lightning.  Tarkin asked how long it would be before they decked with the “Einem” to which a commander said fifteen minutes.  Tarkin decided to interview Anakin before they docked.

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – The Positives

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 15, 2006 by jedicouncil

I am absolutely exhausted tonight.  I had a workshop this morning on Blackboard and found out why others couldn’t get to my course on blackboard.  They haven’t approved it for public viewing yet in my district.  As soon as it is okay, I put a link up on this blog and give you all a chance to check out my Blackboard page.  The workshop seemed to drag on for a while as we worked on our pages.  I actually got a lot of personal work done within the workshop.  I found and started playing around with “The Dented Helmet” website.  It’s pretty sad that I can start forming how I’m going to build my Mandolarian armor while in a workshop and getting paid because everyone else is too slow to figure it out and I’m getting paid to do it!  Got out of my workshop at eleven and went home to what I consider to be considerable chaos.  I felt bad for Heather as the kids kinda got up early on her and had her out of bed at around eight a.m. and she only got home at quarter after two.  Not a lot of time to sleep for her.  Anyway, I continued to work on my bowcaster which is now cut out and now I’m sanding down.  The good news is that most of the equipment I need is right here in my house.  The wood, some of the metal, and all the tools.  Basically I need to get some basic equipment and I’m ready to go!  Anyway, I worked on that while we watched the finale for “Hell’s Kitchen”.  We were both really excited to see that Heather won the competition.  We were both routing for her from the beginning anyway.  We decided to head upstairs and take an afternoon nap as we knew tonight was going to be rough.

And tonight was rough.  We got dinner together in a quick lightning ball to get Austin and myself out the door on time.  Heather took Austin to football practice, left and went to work, picked him up on her break and took him to where the girls were.  The girls went with our next-door neighbors to their church for an ice-cream social and had cake and ice-cream and had their faces painted.  Then they came home and stayed with the neighbors until I got home.  I had a busy night all on my own.  I went to Vestal High School and met up with the staff and students and we loaded up equipment buses and students on buses and took them to our secondary site.  We are going there because the high school football field is being renovated in a multi-million dollar project.  We got to our secondary site and only had about two hours to practice, so the director decided to focus on music tonight.  So, Jim and I went out to one of the fields and painted the lines on the field.  I came home, joined up with the kids at the neighbor’s house and then sent them to bed.  I went downstairs, started watching some T.V. and working on some of my bowcaster.

Okay, time to talk about the positives of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears…..

Positives:  This book had some positive aspects.  I really did like the introduction of the Blood Carver species in this book and would really would have liked to have had see this species in the movies.  I also liked the idea of the “moving” planet that was introduced by the end of the book.  The writing in this book was very descriptive and I had no problems picturing what was occuring.  I had a good idea of what was going on with the storyline and the chapters seemed to flow well from one idea to another.  I also liked getting to know Tarkin on another level and seeing him as more than the absolute evil leader from “A New Hope”.  Seinar was an interesting character and kept me involved in the smuggler/bad guy concept throughout the entire book.  The young Anakin was well written and constantly seemed to be on the divergence of being the snotty power-driven teenager and the boy that he was in “The Phantom Menace”.  He was written in a way that I could see both sides to that character.  I liked the concept of Charza Kwinn and also liked the idea of Thracia Lo Cheem.  Great introductions to some new Jedi characters and the planet of Zonoma Sekot.  The natural element of The Force seemed to make more sense after having read this book.

Okay, so there are the positives.  Stay tuned.  Tommorrow night, I will go over the negatives and my overall rating on the book.

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Coda

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 14, 2006 by jedicouncil

Well, it was back to work for the week.  Lots to do before we go camping in two weeks and even more to do before we get to Marching Band Camp for Vestal which starts tommorrow night (wow, this summer is just flying by).  I went to work at Wendy’s today and had a typical Monday.  Slow at first, but the lunch rush was really hopping.  I can’t believe that this week is going to be my last week at Wendy’s for the summer already.  I felt when I started this job as though it were going to go on and on forever and the next thing I know, I’m almost done with the job.  Anyway, got done with work and came home and we all got ready to take Austin to his first football meeting/practice.  When we got there, we found out that it was actually practice, which I wish I had known because he really wasn’t prepared in any way say with a water bottle and all.  So, Heather headed home and got a water bottle, better sneakers, and a chair for me to sit in.  We really felt left out of the loop when it came to football.  We haven’t really been told any of the details about football at all.  Maybe it’s the anal retentive marching band director in me, but it would be nice if they handed out a “welcome to football” packet so I knew what to expect of this particular sport group.  I honestly ripped into the coaches wife/secretary and said that it wasn’t fair for the new parents to be left in the dark about what to expect out of the football season.  She laid right back into me and we had a really heated debate.  She claims that we aren’t in the dark and that we need to know all that we need to know.  Well, that’s completely false.  We don’t know who provides equipment and what equipment they provide.  We don’t know when practices are and where they are.  What can I expect from the season?  When are the games?  Where are the games?  Who are the games against?  These were all questions I had that were not being answered by anyone.  Well, later in the practice, the coach’s wife came down to me and apologized and answered at least some of my questions.  I apologized but also explained where I was coming from.  I was most upset at finding out that football camp is all next week while marching band camp is occurring at Vestal.  This would have been nice information to know earlier.  Just like I also found out that the football games actually take place on Sunday anytime between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. depending on which league my son is in.   Again, important information to know ahead of time!  Anyway, we both apologized to each other.  In the meantime, Heather had left for work.

Now, something I didn’t cover about today earlier was that we have been praying for and waiting for a phone call from my brother and his wife.  She is pregnant and has been expecting any day now and should be giving birth today because the doctors decided to induce the birth.  I knew I was going to get a phone call tonight sometime about how things are progressing.  Well, at about 11:35 I received a call that they had a baby boy.  AND, not only did they have a boy (which I’m proud that my brother has a son to pall around with, much like I do with Austin), but they also gave that boy a special name – Robert Kenneth.  So that’s right ladies and gentlemen, my nephew is named after me.  Can you all tell I’m a little proud of that?  I’ve been walking around all night now after that a little taller and with my chest pushed out just a little further.  Now I know the name Robert Crissman will live on even after I’m long gone.  Thanks Mike for the honor of naming my nephew after me.  It’s very exciting.

Alright, not the last chapter per say, but it’s time to talk about the Coda of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears…..

Coda:  Within years all Sekotan ships are dead or destroyed.  Tarkin and Seinar return the crippled fleet.  Tarkin begins devising plans for a moon-sized battle station.  The new Republic finds use of Tarkin and Seinar.  Charza Kwinn returns to Coruscant and given a new mission.  In later years, during the Empire, Charza becomes a pirate and smuggler, but only against Imperial ships.Rumors are abound of a planet moving about led by a mad-person.  Months after counseling Anakin, Thracia Lo Cheem leaves the Jedi Order without explanation.  “There is no balance yet”.

 

Okay, tommorrow night I will give the positives of the book and the night after the negatives and give this book a final overall rating.

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Chapter 67

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 13, 2006 by jedicouncil

Well, today was an exciting day on many accounts.  It was just a busy and fun day all wrapped into one.  First off, my in-laws showed up with Heather’s grandmother and we had a wonderful time showing grandma the house and what we have accomplished in a short amount of time.  The kids were excited to be home and I was excited to have them home.  Austin and Ruth really liked how the home theater room has changed now that I have hung the Star Wars “flying” toys from the ceiling.  I had to “bug out” about halfway through there visit to go to Barnes n’ Nobles to meet with my local Star Wars Fanforce group for the first time.

Well, I met these people online through http://www.theforce.net in their Jedi Council Forums section under the Northeast forums.  There were two members of the Binghamton chapter that were already established and two of us that wanted to join.  Well, I went to the meeting just to have a bunch of people to talk to and understand why I think Star Wars is so interesting and important in my life.  This turned into a discussion from everything from miniature gaming to costuming.  During the meeting, I got an opportunity to actually come up with an opportunity to come up with a new costume.  I have decided, yes put this in the books, to create a Mandolarian Armor set.  That’s right, I’m about to climb the mountain of becoming a fan of Jengo and/or Boba Fett.  I plan on starting by making a wookie bowcaster that my character will have stolen from another bounty hunter that killed a wookie to get it.  I’m also looking into getting a jumpsuit and working on the armor portion of it.  I already have a helmet.  I just need to fill it in and repaint it and make it look completely different.  So, after all of that, I have decided to start on that project.  I had a great time at the meeting and got the latest episode of “Star Wars Insider”.  We plan on having a meeting every month and have talked about doing some other events and maybe some parades if we can manage to make the group grow.  It was very exciting!

I came home to another change at my house.  We were able to put up a new light in our bathroom and now our bathroom looks completely brighter with the new fixture.  My father-in-law put it in.  Austin and I finished watching the “Watkins Glen” race when I got home and Austin was excited because his favorite driver, Robby Gordon, finished in fourth place.  His best finish this entire year.  Not bad for an owner/driver that is as young as he is. 

Time to talk about the last chapter of this book, Chapter 67 of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet”

Chapter 67:  “The Jabitha” is in a hanger on Seline.  The ship was loosing it’s color.  Obi-Wan and Thracia Lo Cheem entered the hangar.  Anakin sat on a bench watching the ship die on this cold planet to which Thracia noted that he was no longer as young.  She told Anakin that power and discipline are not enough.  Anakin said he knew.  Thracia said that she would feel his thoughts and that he was still being judged.  Obi-Wan looked at the dead ship then left the hangar as Thracia probed Anakin’s mind.  He reminded himself that Thracia is a healer and that this is only the beginning of his padwan’s journey.

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Chapter 66

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 12, 2006 by jedicouncil

Well, last night/this morning I stayed up until two a.m. to talk with Heather when she got home from work.  I did this because we just don’t seem to see each other any other way unless I do this.  So, she got home and we talked till three a.m.  It’s such odd hours that we lead, I worry about being able to get back on schedule for school.  Either it will be easier than ever or I am going to be a complete grouch in school and will have to try and figure out how I’m going to work it out.  Anyway, we slept in late this morning.  Heather’s mother called us at 10:30 a.m. and kinda got us out of bed.  We called the kids at my in-laws and talked to them a little bit.  I hate to say it, but I’m actually really beginning to miss them.  I guess I get spoiled when they’re around.  I have been involved in a meeting over the week that I have not written about, but I’m getting excited about it for tommorrow.  My FanForce here in Binghamton is finally going to have a meeting tommorrow at noon at the Vestal Barnes N’ Nobles.  I really can’t wait to go because it will be the first meeting we’ve had and I’m really hoping to meet a bunch of Star Wars fans and connect with them.  It would be greatly appreciated and I think it will be a fun opportunity to meet others.  I even made some new buisness cards for the occassion.  Maybe I’ll get a chance to meet some people to get involved in this hobby with afterall.

One word explains today – Lazy!  Heather and I knew today would be one last chance to spend some time together, so we were bound and determined to do that.  We stopped at the bank, did some buisness, went to “Red Barn Computers” and checked out how much it would cost to upgrade both computers and the prices aren’t too bad at all.  Then we went to Wendy’s got some Frosty’s and drinks and then went to “Video King” and rented “Cheaper By The Dozen 2” and “The Producers”.  We then stopped at Staples and got some supplies that Heather and Ruth needed.  We then came home and watched “Cheaper by the Dozen 2”.  Good movie, funny, but not as good as the first.  We watched T.V. for a little and then went to “Quiznos” as a friend of mine at work gave me two free passes to Quiznos.  The subs were actually really good!  (by the way, thank you Jessica, it was really appreciated).  We then stopped at Giant on the way home and got some snacks and a peanut butter/chocolate cake.  We came home and watched “The Producers” which was totally hysterical.  If you have never seen the movie before, PLEASE go get it or rent it, it’s well worth the money!  Then we switched it off quickly to catch “The Legend of Zorro” on STARZ.  It was okay, but again not as good as the first one. 

Let’s talk about Chapter 66 of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears…..

Chapter 66:  Obi-Wan slept out of sheer exhaustion.  Anakin was also alseep and at the ship’s helm, but connected with her.  Obi-Wan woke up and checked on the ship and realized they would not make it to Coruscant.  Obi-Wan changed the coordinates to a little-known rocky outpost world known only by the Jedi.  Obi-Wan sent a message to the Temple to have Mace Windu an/or Thracia Lo Cheem to join them and counsel Anakin.  Anakin awoke and said the ship was dreaming of being free.  Then Anakin decided to name the ship “Jabitha”.  Anakin asked Obi-Wan if he thought the Sekotans were still alive to which he said he did not know.  Anakin asked if the ship is dying and Obi-Wan said yes and took pity on Anakin.  Everything he loves just seems to die.  Obi-Wan then asks to see Vergere’s message to the Jedi.

‘Star Wars:Rogue Planet’ – Chapter 65

Posted in IA - Star Wars: Rogue Planet (2) with tags on August 11, 2006 by jedicouncil

Today was absolute chaos at work.  It just didn’t seem to slow down at all and I had to take a few minutes every once in a while to get a drink.  Although the temperatures around here have fallen like a rock and the humidity has dropped at a nice rate as well, standing in front of a three-hundred degree grill does make any weather seem hot anyway.  The good news is that because work was so steady, then it made the work hours seem to go by very quickly.  It made it seem like I wasn’t there for six hours.  I came home and very quickly finished some cleaning that I started yesterday and managed to cook and eat dinner all before six o’clock.  So, I decided that it was time to “veg out”, so I went downstairs and for the first time since we moved into the house, I did nothing but play my PS2 for four hours, playing “Star Wars:Battlefront II”.  It felt good to actually just do that.  I have not done that in months.  I may even say, a year!

Let’s talk about Chapter 65 of “Star Wars:Rogue Planet” by Greg Bears…..

Chapter 65:  Obi-Wan kicked aside the fuel hose and entered the Sekotan ship.  Obi-Wan told Anakin to brace himself.  The explosive blew, sending debris into space and jamming the mine-ship against the hull of “The Einem.”  The Sekotan ship was pushed free but was injured in several places along the way.  They were now plummetting end over end.  Droid ships swarmed from everywhere as Anakin gained control and headed for Zonoma’s atmosphere.  Obi-Wan said it was time to live to fight another day.  Obi-Wan noted that the sky-mines were still on the planet as Anakin, Obi-Wan, and the ship started to interconnect.  Obi-Wan said he would supervise.  Anakin said that Sekot would talk to the ship and then caught Obi-Wan up on what he learned.  Anakin began to enjoy the ride and relax as the ship heated up in the atmosphere.  The sky-mines and droid fighters  were still massing on them, however, Anakin suggest they go lower into the factory valley.  Anakin then reveals that everyone on the planet is going to escape in one big ship according to Sekot.  they dove down into the valley and the droid starfighters pursued.  Both Jedi saw that the valley was very narrow.  Obi-Wan watched in disbelief as pilot-less ships fought the starfighters.  Anakin noted that Sekot had become the pilot.  Obi-Wan said they had about three minutes before being surrounded in the valley.  Anakin said to never give up.  Pillars of light burst forth from the floor as what looked like vains shot forth.  Anakin said fi they didn’t want to go with the Sekotans then they better get in solar orbit quickly.  Then Obi-Wan recognized the “vains” as plasma cones of a HUGE engine.  Obi-Wan told Anakin to maneuver through the sky-mines and get them out of there.  Obi-Wan reminded Anakin to never give up.  They got inot orbit in seconds with Anakin’s speedy ship, but starfighters soon followed.  Charza Kwinn tried to keep up but soon couldn’t, so he fell back and engaged an escort ship.  Then, the “Rim Merchant Einem” let out one turbolaser shot that put Anakin and his ship in a lot of pain.  Obi-Wan looked behind as the entire planet began to move using it’s new engines.  Obi-Wan felt a farewell then lost touch with Sekot.  Ankin still felt his ship’s pain, but Tarkin’s fleet was in disarray as ships slammed into friendly ships.  Ankin knew they had very little time left with the sip, so they entered hyperspace and left behind wehre Zonoma Sekot once stood.