Snakedance

Tonight’s soundtrack: Big Lazy, “Meditation (For A Pair of Wire Cutters)”

I adore Snakedance. If memory serves, and it’ll have to, because I’m not getting out of this chair, it was the Target novelization of this story that Janet Fielding signed for me at a convention in the mid-80s. Doctor Who, as I said in an essay I mean to write someday, has always seemed to attract an audience that enjoys reading for reading’s sake. In any case, it never struck me as odd that I didn’t have the pretty actress sign a photo of herself, but instead a book in which the character she played is pretty important.

It’s the variety of influences it draws from and the richness of the world it builds that make Snakedance so enjoyable—even though it turns out the title refers to neither Blade Runner nor Satanico Pandemonium. That’s a bit of a missed trick. Granted, Salma Hayek was only 16 at the time and attending a Catholic High School, so…. I’m gonna stop myself right there.

Here’s a limb I will go out on: there’s a lot of Bruce Lee in Snakedance. Specifically, Enter the Dragon and the art of fighting without fighting. Even if the fun house mirrors (of the endgame) and the Doctor’s meditation pose (echoing Lee in the pit with the nunchuks around his neck) weren’t enough, well, actually that will have to be enough without me rewatching the thing. Point is, this story provides emotional content without anger; it’s like a small play, but played seriously.

Not thinking, yet not dreaming.



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