V THE OREGON INVASION BY JAYNE TANNEHILL

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tarzan

Copyright 1987.

Hadad is a Visitor cryogenic technician that was stranded on Earth after the red dust was released. Abandoned he makes his way away from Los Angeles and ends up in the small town of Prineville in central Oregon. A place that seems unaffected by the red dust. There he takes up residence in a cave outside town and takes a job at the local saw mill. The people accept him as a foreign immigrant and he settles into a peaceful life.

Then one day a Visitor Mother Ship comes to Central Oregon. The expedition is there to test a new anti-toxin that the Visitors have developed for the red dust. In the expedition is an old friend of Hadad’s that is now his enemy. Hadad is a priest of Zon and is now considered a traitor. Together with a human named Ruth Hogan a free spirited artist the two must escape as the Visitors conquer the towns in central Oregon.

After the horrible To Conquer the Throne this was a welcome change of pace. Jayne Tannehill has a beautiful writing style. The story is somewhat slow paced but that is made up with an interesting story and likeable characters of Hadad and Ruth. The story does at the end get a little weird with the religious mysticism and the story seemed to end abruptly. Possibly there was a planned sequel. Unfortunately this would be Jayne’s first and only contribution to the series. Which is too bad since I would have liked to read about how Hadad and Ruth’s quest would have turned out.

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V TO CONQUER THE THRONE BY TIM SULLIVAN

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tarzan

Copyright 1987.

Gabriella Nicks is an American student in London. One night her fiancé Nigel Smythe-Walmsley comes to her fleeing the Visitors. Nigel a son of a notorious collaborator in the House of Lords is the leader of the British resistance. He has been betrayed by a member in the resistance hierarchy. Now Gabriella finds herself on the run pursued by the Visitors and traitors in the British resistance. She eventually hooks up with the IRA, the only effective resistance group against the Visitor occupation and its Vichy type government in the British Isles.

She becomes a symbol of resistance and a major thorn in Medea the Visitor commander to subvert her devious plan to break the will of the British people. It involves having Kaspar the deceased Visitor European commander’s body being interred in Westminster Abbey. Apparently this is a diabolical plan that would break the people’s spirit. But thankfully Gabriella and the IRA come to the rescue with stolen skyfighters and take over the London Mother Ship.

Well if Path to Conquest was the best then this was the worst book in the series. Where to begin? The hokey melodramatic dialogue. Example “Silence,” the Visitor captain hissed. “Another word out of you and we’ll kill you and eat you right here in the street.” Or the dull characters and shoddy plot. It seems just sort of thrown together in a quick haphazard way. The IRA produces seven captured skyfighters at the end with no explanation. They conveniently use them to assault and capture the Mother Ship with ease.

Oh and lets not forget the scene were Medea decides to have the resistance traitor for dinner literally. He is cooked in a wine sauce and served with an apple in his mouth. While gruesome it is totally inaccurate. It was established that Visitors being reptiles must eat there food alive or freshly killed and raw. Obviously Sullivan is not real familiar with the TV series and it shows in his writing.

This is a bad book. A bold statement but I stand by it. The third and final book written by Tim Sullivan. He was my least favorite writer in the series and he ended his contribution with this turkey. A real let down after such a great start to the revival of this series. Thankfully the next book was a lot better.

V PATH TO CONQUEST BY HOWARD WEINSTEIN

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tarzan

Copyright 1987.

Diana the supreme commander of the invading Visitors has come up with a plan to bring humanity to its knees. Oil is a crucial resource in the human war effort. The free cities in the north require a steady stream to fuel its industry. Diana has come up with a two prong attack. Project Icewind will alter the weather bringing a crushing cold that will eat up fuel reserves. The second is a plan to contaminate the world’s oil with a bacteria that makes it toxic.

Pete Forsythe and Lauren Steward the leaders of the New York resistance embark on a dangerous mission to stop Diana’s plan. From dogfights over the north Atlantic protecting oil tanker convoys to Los Angeles to the Persian Gulf. Our heroes race the clock and must rely on a known traitor to stop the world’s oil supply from being destroyed.

At the end of the Texas Run the next book was announced coming soon. Well the TV series was cancelled and Path to Conquest never materialized so I assumed it was cancelled. In reality Pinnacle went bankrupt and left five completed books in the series in limbo. Two years later I came across this book sitting in the book rack at the local grocery story. Tor books had acquired the rights and decided to release these unpublished books.

Excitedly I snatched up the book. This has got to be the best book ever written for the series. Weinstein brings back the characters from East Coast Crisis in a new adventure. We get a glimpse into the big picture of the Visitor invasion. The government has been relocated to New York. The Middle East has been mostly overrun except for Israel which is able to hold on to its little slice of territory. They have allied with the Arabs and with remnants of Saudi and Egyptian forces hold the eastern Saudi oil fields.

This book had a real epic feel to it. Aircraft carries escort oil convoys from Britain. Air raids on New York. Battles in the Middle East. Weinstein was always my favorite author in this series and his third and final book does not disappoint. I was glad that Tor decided to publish this and not let it fade away.

V THE TEXAS RUN BY GEO. W. PROCTOR

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tarzan

Copyright 1985.

Rick Hurley is a member of the Los Angeles resistance. On an mission at John Wayne airport his group is ambushed in a surprise Visitor trap. Barely escaping he finds refugee in a airplane and passes out. When he wake he finds himself on a cargo plane with stolen medical supplies bound for Dallas-Fort Worth. Sheryl Lee Darcy is a member of the resistance in Texas and is delivering the desperately needed supplies. The Visitors campaign in Texas is quite brutal. They have blasted the cities into rubble and round up the survivors for processing into the food storage pods on the Mother Ship.

On the way the plane is shot down by a Visitor fighter. The two resistance members are saved by an old P-51 mustang that shows up and manages to shoot it down. The plane is piloted by Charlie Scoggins a Korean war vet who now hunts down solidary Visitor fighters with his restored WWII vintage aircraft. He is able to organized the various ranchers in the area to recover the medical supplies and transport them to the Dallas-Ft. Worth city. At the same time the Visitor commander Garth is hunting for Sheryl Lee. Her mother had shot off his hand and he has a diabolical plan for vengeance against Sheryl Lee.

This is the second and final book written by Proctor. While not as good as his first book it is still a fun fast paced story he has written. He depicts a savage brutal total war going on in Texas. Cities are razed and whole populations are rounded up for processing. Its an interesting interpretation for the series and I would have liked to have seen more from this author. But is was not meant to be.

V DEATH TIDE BY A.C. CRISPIN AND DEBORAH A. MARSHALL

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tarzan

Copyright 1985.

Diana the leader of the Visitors has been ordered to reactivate desalinization plants along the west coast. The Visitor’s home world is desperate for water. Unfortunately the resistance has developed a new strain of red dust bacteria and introduced it into the local kelp. This new strain is impossible to filter and makes the water in southern California useless to the Visitors. So Diana introduces a plan to introduce a defoliant that will kill the kelp. This will upset the delicate ecological balance and spell disaster for the west coast.

This is the third book written by Crispin and was co-written with her friend. Interesting that the story came about when the two were visiting the set of the series. On a trip to Catalina they came up with the idea and decided to develop it for a TV script. It eventually got sold as this book. This is very well written story. You have real depth to the various characters. Julie struggles with a possible pregnancy. Donovan struggles with the constant strain of being a hunted fugitive. On a mission to New York he is offered a news anchor job and seriously considers leaving the resistance. In addition there is also plenty of fast paced action and suspense.

When this book came out the series was at the end of its first and only season. I wonder if writers like Crispin were writing for the series that it might have gone on. Instead we are left with what might have been. This is Crispin’s final book for the series and was one of the best.

RIFFTRAX LIVE: MIAMI CONNECTION

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The third entry in this years the Crappening. This time we get treated to a forgotten gem from 1987. The movie starts out with introducing the motorcycle riding ninjas. A typical drug deal is going down and the ninjas decide to help themselves to both the cocaine and money. The drug dealers armed with Mac-10’s are no match against the ninja’s speed and stealth. When full automatic weapons fire fails they resort to attacking the ninjas with metal pipes with the same results.

Drug dealers die a gruesome death for opposing the ninjas.

Drug dealers die a gruesome death for opposing the ninjas.

But as the cobra has the mongoose the ninja has a new wave/Tae Kwon Do enthusiasts rock band. In this case it is DRAGON SOUND the hottest band in Orlando. These young men and one Pat Benatar wannabe when not rockin’ to such hits as “Friends” or “Against the Ninja” go to the University of Central Florida or practice their Tae Kwon Do. And these guys do everything together. They live in the same house, go to class together, the beach, the gym and pretty much anywhere together.

DRAGON SOUND in one of their rare moments wearing shirts.

DRAGON SOUND in one of their rare moments wearing shirts.

Well the group has a problem with the brother of their lead singer. It seems he is jealous of his sister dating one of the guys on the band. Nothing creepy about that. Said brother also heads a non-ninja gang that is pissed at DRAGON SOUND for I think that they are also a band and angry that they can’t get hired at the night club. I say think because this movie feels that the plot is none of the audiences business. So I am kind of on my own in trying to figure it all out.

DRAGON SOUND confronts creepy brother and his gang.

DRAGON SOUND confronts creepy brother and his gang.

Well creepy brother and his gang try to take on DRAGON SOUND and in spite of being outnumbered five hundred to one DRAGON SOUND has no problem kicking their asses. Well after several attempts the creepy brother is killed in one of the encounters. This pissed off the leader of the Miami ninjas and the ninjas embark on a trip to Orlando. They meet the gang as they take one of the member to meet his long lost father. After nearly killing him and ruining his spiffy new suit he just bought, the rest of DRAGON SOUND open a can of whop ass on the ninjas.

DRAGON SOUND training in the arts of Tae Kwon Do.

DRAGON SOUND training in the arts of Tae Kwon Do.

Oh my God do I love this movie. I have never see such overacting in my life. The lead a Grandmaster Y.K Kim who also produced and wrote this could not speak a word on intelligible English. Fortunately he left most of the dialogue to the others and concentrated on kicking ass. Of course this movie is bad but it such a wonderful bad. You can tell that everyone involved was trying hard and this movie has heart that other big budget fail to ever have. This was the best for Rifftrax because it was just made to be riffed on.

Our hero Grandmaster Y.K Kim mumbling unintelligible English while kicking ninja butt.

Our hero Grandmaster Y.K Kim mumbling unintelligible English while kicking ninja butt.

So here is the trailer.

And watch out for Santa Claus and the Ice Cream Bunny coming this December.