Tuesday, 16 August 2016

The Enemy

Poul Anderson invests considerable imagination in the Johannine Church which turns out to be the main instrument of the Adversary in Operation Chaos. Not all of Anderson's fiction has "villains" but, when he does write villains, they are impressive.

The King of Ys, co-written by Karen Anderson, contends with barbarians and bureaucrats but his ultimate enemies are the Gods of Ys. The Ysan Sea God is a Son of Chaos.

In the Psychotechnic History, the "old and protean enemy" (and here), manifesting through many political movements and conspiracies, is the revolt of primitive man against civilization. This is Law and Chaos, the Dog and the Wolf, in another form.

The History of Technic Civilization has the racist Merseians and the manipulative Aycharaych.

In There Will Be Time, the Eyrie is an organization of time travelers with the racist and imperialist values of the nineteenth century.

In The Corridors Of Time, Wardens and Rangers fight a time war. Both are bad.

The Time Patrol contends not only with Neldorians and Exaltationists but also ultimately with temporal chaos. And here we have Law and Chaos yet again.

What an impressive list!

(SM Stirling's Against The Tide Of Years has arrived but meanwhile I have got heavily back into the goetic timeline of Anderson's Old Phoenix multiverse.)


  1. Kaor, Paul!

    While I agree the Rangers and Wardens we see in THE CORRIDORS OF TIME are seriously flawed, to say the least, I do have a sneaking sympathy for Brann, one of the leaders of the Rangers. And Malcolm Lockridge also came to have some liking for him.


    1. Sean,
      When our hero started working with Wardens against Rangers, I thought, "He's on the wrong side!" However, it became clear that both were bad. But Brann has redeeming features.

    2. Kaor, Paul!

      And I think Brann was a better person than Storm Darroway.