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I’m In Hell, But Don’t Stop! Reviewing Alien: Into Charybdis – AvP Galaxy Podcast #128

We have just uploaded the 128th episode of the Alien vs. Predator Galaxy Podcast (right-click and save as to download)! Corporal Hicks, RidgeTop and VoodooMagic are back to discuss Alex White’s latest novel, Alien: Into Charybdis!

 I'm In Hell, But Don't Stop! Reviewing Alien: Into Charybdis - AvP Galaxy Podcast #128

 

There’s some disagreement over Alex White’s villains, discuss the realism of seemingly unrealistic situations, how the book did things that Voodoo doesn’t normally like but made him absolutely enjoy, whether or not anyone is truly likeable, and plenty more!

There are a couple of pronoun slip-ups so please forgive us there. What did you think of our latest episode? Be sure to let us know down below! You can also listen to any of our previous episodes in the Podcast section under the News tab on the main menu. The Alien vs. Predator Galaxy Podcast is also available via iTunes, PodBean, GooglePlay Stitcher, and Spotify! Please be sure to leave a rating and review on whichever platform you’re using!

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If you haven’t already listened to our previous episode, Alex White joined us on the podcast last episode to talk about the writing of Alien: Into Charybdis. Be sure to go check that out!

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Comments: 44
  1. ZarnoldQuigley
    Love both the Cold Forge and Charyribdib, as Jerry Fowler would say. Really enjoyed the villains in both. Duncan had some cheesy lines and was crazy. But I think that is exactly how she should be. Almost like a crazy 80s slasher maniac combined with the Aliens universe. I can just picture her in my head being a lunatic that just never dies. I could go on and on about the book.
    Enjoyed both podcasts about the book but really wanted to hear Hicks thoughts on the one really great acid death towards the end. Seemed like the brutal acid death we have been waiting for ! Admitting I dont keep on a lot of Alien/Aliens expanded universe.
  2. Kimarhi
    Quote from: Kradan on Jun 25, 2021, 08:58:16 AM
    Quote from: Kimarhi on Jun 24, 2021, 02:27:55 AM
    It seems he is angling toward a major conflict in human space with the Aliens being overlooked and forgotten about in the conflict which I'm sure will raise its ugly head later. 

    I'm not sure what you mean here. Could you elaborate, please ?

    At the end of the book two human factions declared war on each other.  It seems that having such a war would be a bad idea with both Aliens running around and black goo stockpile throughout the galaxy. 
  3. Kradan
    Speaking of Brits being weird: is it me or does Hicks' "but" sounds a bit like "boat" ? I definitely noticed it in earlier episodes

    Also, Hicks you gotta stop shaming RidgeTop for not getting his hands on every goddamn piece of Alien media you liked/loved. Man gotta have his own life !
  4. Kimarhi
    I hope Alex can continue on with the series even after the Disney buyout.  It seems he is angling toward a major conflict in human space with the Aliens being overlooked and forgotten about in the conflict which I'm sure will raise its ugly head later. 



    The only thing that even remotely tickled my Alien fancy the last decade or so has been the first six issues of defiance.  However as well as it started out I felt it really tapered off in the last six issues.  Charybdis held my interest from start to finish.  I feel I would've dug it even if I knew nothing about the Alienverse.   
  5. Kradan
    Quote from: RidgeTop on Jun 22, 2021, 08:24:01 PM
    Quote from: XenoHunter99 on Jun 22, 2021, 04:50:22 PM
    As usual, good work on the podcast. RidgeTop, good luck with your show.

    Thanks! Show happened earlier this month at my University but it's in a gallery on the campus for a bit.

    Quote from: Kradan on Jun 22, 2021, 05:59:17 PM
    f**k

    Anyway, got a link ?

    Yep, here are the images I went with. The project was equestrian photography from last fall to this spring, specifically contrasting domestic and wild horses out here in Utah. This was a selection for the gallery from a number of different shoots I did:

    https://adamzellerphotographer.pixieset.com/adamzellerbfashow2021/

    And the gallery itself:

    Spoiler

    Nice pics, RidgeTop !  ;)

    Fun fact: My dad absolutely loves horses. I'm gonna show him these
  6. Corporal Hicks
    I see where you're going with the rebuttal, but I don't bite. You feel he earned it for certain actions, I feel he didn't for others. There's no winners there, regardless of the black/white thing. Had he got the kill, I'm sure I'd have appreciated for the black and white nature of the world-building. But speaking purely from the typical POV of satisfaction, I'm glad he didn't get it.

    And just a reminder for folk, Alex uses them/they/their.  :)
  7. Voodoo Magic
    Quote from: Corporal Hicks on Jun 23, 2021, 08:09:15 AM
    Spoiler
    I just don't think he deserved the kill either. Sure, everything with his kid was f**king brutal, but he'd spent the majority of the novel being one of the antagonists. He was such an arse to Kamran. And again, while I love all the duality and getting the stuff with him not being an antagonist, I just don't think I would have found it satisfying if he'd been the one to get the kill.
    [close]

    Spoiler
    Separate from us disagreeing if Haroun earned that kill - A character not earning a kill or being too much of an ass to be satisfying as the delivery agent for justice I think does contradict what you love in the way Alex White writes his characters in a world that is not black and white, and hardly anyone seems to satisfyingly get what they earn or deserve.

    To be honest, I was half expecting Duncan to survive the whole ordeal. :)
    [close]
  8. Corporal Hicks
    Spoiler
    I just don't think he deserved the kill either. Sure, everything with his kid was f**king brutal, but he'd spent the majority of the novel being one of the antagonists. He was such an arse to Kamran. And again, while I love all the duality and getting the stuff with him not being an antagonist, I just don't think I would have found it satisfying if he'd been the one to get the kill.
    [close]
  9. RidgeTop
    Quote from: XenoHunter99 on Jun 22, 2021, 04:50:22 PM
    As usual, good work on the podcast. RidgeTop, good luck with your show.

    Thanks! Show happened earlier this month at my University but it's in a gallery on the campus for a bit.

    Quote from: Kradan on Jun 22, 2021, 05:59:17 PM
    f**k

    Anyway, got a link ?

    Yep, here are the images I went with. The project was equestrian photography from last fall to this spring, specifically contrasting domestic and wild horses out here in Utah. This was a selection for the gallery from a number of different shoots I did:

    https://adamzellerphotographer.pixieset.com/adamzellerbfashow2021/

    And the gallery itself:

    Spoiler

    Also, appreciate the podcast feedback, everybody. I really enjoyed the book, my main issue was Duncan and how blatantly evil/incompetent/chaos-causing she was.

    Book spoiler:
    Spoiler
    If a squad was slaughtered like that for trying to relieve command it would've likely caused an even larger rift in the chain of command with the remaining troops. But I suppose some of the war-crimes during the Iraq/Afghanistan conflict were also pretty blatant, with the most obscene being from the PMC contractors. I get Alex was going for a commentary with that, just personally thought it could've been a bit more nuanced. I was intrigued with Duncan's setup, but the more vicious she got, the more she kept sabotaging her own goals.
    [close]
  10. XenoHunter99
    I agree with Kimarhi that Into Charybdis is much better than Cold Forge. I've finished reading and listening to the podcast. I guess I'll have to use some spoiler tags here as my post really will spoil things for people who haven't read. The podcast has big spoilers, too. :-X

    Spoiler
    I liked Blue as an upgraded alien. It was a liberating transformation for the character, and it was completely logical for Blue to die at the end. I hope Blue is truly dead - Resurrection in a new book would be sort of a cheap Marvel ploy and would rob the character of a good ending.

    I think Mary was aware of what an uninhibited android can do, and she was rightly concerned that Rook might murder her and Kamran. The escape pod was a good way to resolve that. It fed nicely into the epilogue.

    I also think Shy needed to die when and how she did. Her death was polyfunctional, and her arc of importance was mostly over, anyway. Kamran's return was surprising, but that worked out well, too. I agree with Voodoo. Haroun's ending would have been better if his "second child" hit the mark. As it worked out, Haroun's final thought was still sort of amusing.
    [close]

    As discussed, all these characters had some duality to them. That made them more interesting.

    I like the possibilities of the Black Goo. I think Alex White applied it well in Cold Forge and Into Charybdis.

    Compared to other androids in the series and EU, Ash seems like sort of a weakling. :o

    As usual, good work on the podcast. RidgeTop, good luck with your show.
  11. Kimarhi
    I too liked Charybdis MUCH better.  I had to force myself to finish Cold Forge before Charybdis came out because it being a sequel and all.  Much to my surprise its probably my favorite bit of Alien lore I've gotten in the last decade.   
  12. XenoHunter99
    As one who found Cold Forge disappointing given the hype around it, I will say Into Charybdis has been a very pleasant surprise - It's actually pretty good! As I am still reading, I'm avoiding the podcast until I'm done, but I'm looking forward to listening.
  13. Nightmare Asylum
    Duncan to me felt like a marine character that could have stepped off of the screen from Avatar. A slight step away from the rest of the book's more grounded characters for sure, but totally in keeping with the novel's critical eye on the marines and their actions. This all honestly contributed to what is by far the most interesting portrayal of the USCM in any material since Aliens itself, if you ask me.

    I still need to listen to Hicks' interview with Alex White from a few weeks back. Maybe I'll get to that tonight...
  14. Nukiemorph
    Absolutely loved this. Easily my favorite of the Alien books I've read so far. Loved the characters, deaths, setting, and use of the prequel elements.

    I even loved the villain. The "Here piggy piggy" line that Voodoo can't let go of was the only part that got a tad cartoonish for me. Outside of that, I always felt like I understood the character's point of view.

    The only two minor gripes that stick out to me:

    I didn't like the movie callbacks, such as "Get away from that computer, you bitch." Distracting and a bit corny.

    Spoiler
    Having Tiran simply get lost in commotion at one point felt like an odd choice. I kept expecting her to pop back up at some point.
    [close]
  15. Engineer
    Quote from: Voodoo Magic on Jun 19, 2021, 10:01:01 PM
    Quote from: Engineer on Jun 19, 2021, 03:51:51 PM
    @Voodoo Magic
    Glad I could help! 🙂 I've also been sharing the charybdis facility diagram with several people who started with the audiobook too. To be fair though, corporal Hicks didn't have the diagram when reading the first draft lol

    I was running on an 85% understanding of how this complex looked, but it was definitely nice to have it and fill in those gaps!  :)


    Quote
    Oh also, I assumed another reason to use charybdis for this facility wasn't just for the server cooling potential, but the renewable energy potential... turbines that generate electricity to help power the facility from the constant flow of water into the maw.

    It all still seems a bit volatile to me, but I like your thinking!

    To clarify, the thing I was referring to when I said I was glad I could help was the giger concept art. The charybdis diagram was a separate thought that I realize I should have distinguished more lol
  16. Voodoo Magic
    Quote from: Engineer on Jun 19, 2021, 03:51:51 PM
    @Voodoo Magic
    Glad I could help! 🙂 I've also been sharing the charybdis facility diagram with several people who started with the audiobook too. To be fair though, corporal Hicks didn't have the diagram when reading the first draft lol

    I was running on an 85% understanding of how this complex looked, but it was definitely nice to have it and fill in those gaps!  :)


    Quote
    Oh also, I assumed another reason to use charybdis for this facility wasn't just for the server cooling potential, but the renewable energy potential... turbines that generate electricity to help power the facility from the constant flow of water into the maw.

    It all still seems a bit volatile to me, but I like your thinking!
  17. Engineer
    @Voodoo Magic
    Glad I could help! 🙂 I've also been sharing the charybdis facility diagram with several people who started with the audiobook too. To be fair though, corporal Hicks didn't have the diagram when reading the first draft lol


    Oh also, I assumed another reason to use charybdis for this facility wasn't just for the server cooling potential, but the renewable energy potential... turbines that generate electricity to help power the facility from the constant flow of water into the maw.
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