Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

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Robspierre
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Robspierre » 24 May 2013 20:21

Seriously, Messiah is the most important book of the original trilogy. That is where Frank took the Heroe's Journey and kicked it so hard in the nuts so that the readers could have their own spice trance and glimpse the hidden paths he was weavimg.

Rob

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby jakoye » 24 May 2013 22:27

Robspierre wrote:Seriously, Messiah is the most important book of the original trilogy. That is where Frank took the Heroe's Journey and kicked it so hard in the nuts so that the readers could have their own spice trance and glimpse the hidden paths he was weavimg.


Agreed. And Messiah's the most tragic book as well, with Paul losing his sight (eventually), Chani her life, and the love story between the two ending as Paul walks into the desert to die.

CoD is a better book, IMO, a more interesting story and not all doom-and-gloom like DM is. But DM still resonates with me because it was the bravest of choices for Herbert to make to tear down the pedestal he had placed his main character upon.

Who does that in fiction, ever? Only the greats!

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby inhuien » 25 May 2013 05:00

The reason DM has its haters is because you're meant to hate it. 200 plus pages of Machiavellian of depression.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby lotek » 25 May 2013 05:08

I really hated DM at first, precisely because I thought "where is Paul and who is that wimp they replaced him with?". It took me a while to realize
1) that's exactly what Frank wanted people to think
2) it was necessary and unavoidable if you followed the story after ever after

It was like becoming a literary man , literally.
There was no way it could have been different after the Fremen won, because absolute power corrupts absolutely.
It was right in my face and still, I didn't see it until I stopped believing in perfect heroes.

And then the Bashar came along, and I thought fuck it, he's awesome.

EDIT TO ADD
inhuien wrote:The reason DM has its haters is because you're meant to hate it. 200 plus pages of Machiavellian of depression.


That too.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Serkanner » 25 May 2013 15:34

Robspierre wrote:Seriously, Messiah is the most important book of the original trilogy. That is where Frank took the Heroe's Journey and kicked it so hard in the nuts so that the readers could have their own spice trance and glimpse the hidden paths he was weavimg.

Rob


Nothing to add.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Robspierre » 26 May 2013 17:39

Another thought:


Frank's intentional destruction of the "hero" really pissed people off. That is why people like the other books less. There is no hero. Good vs Bad is not the theme. Too many people want good guys vs bad guys because it fits the narrow band of how they look upon stories.

Case in point, look at the shit Keith and Bobo write, they create "heroes," they set up the stories so that the reader has good vs bad. They pander to the base wants of the reading public. They force a "morality" on the story that does not belong because Frank was not intersted in a static forced morality. The various moral aspects in the novels all change over the course of time, just like it has for centuries here on earth.

Rob

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby lotek » 27 May 2013 02:38

Robspierre wrote:Another thought:


Frank's intentional destruction of the "hero" really pissed people off. That is why people like the other books less. There is no hero. Good vs Bad is not the theme. Too many people want good guys vs bad guys because it fits the narrow band of how they look upon stories.

Case in point, look at the shit Keith and Bobo write, they create "heroes," they set up the stories so that the reader has good vs bad. They pander to the base wants of the reading public. They force a "morality" on the story that does not belong because Frank was not intersted in a static forced morality. The various moral aspects in the novels all change over the course of time, just like it has for centuries here on earth.

Rob


That's their biggest sin I reckon.
Spice is the worm's gonads.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby jakoye » 27 May 2013 08:29

lotek wrote:That's their biggest sin I reckon.


I do not know which of their sins is the biggest... all I know is that they are legion.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Redstar » 01 Jun 2013 22:03

The original Dune was a very archetypical story grounded in the Hero's Journey. The sequels, as has been said before, broke down that template into more open-ended stories that made you question every turn.

You can't immerse yourself into the story of the sequels very well because you're being engaged. You're too taken with the ideas therein than with the story. That's what people don't like: being engaged on a level more akin to an essay than a story.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby inhuien » 02 Jun 2013 06:23

Redstar wrote:You can't immerse yourself into the story of the sequels very well because you're being engaged. You're too taken with the ideas therein than with the story. That's what people don't like: being engaged on a level more akin to an essay than a story.


Can't say that's my take, but each to their own. Shame really.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Hunchback Jack » 04 Jun 2013 21:06

As I think I've said here before, DM is about consequences. The cost of Paul's victory in Dune was the Jihad, and he made that choice knowingly. DM shows the results of that choice. The way he resolves it is Paul's redemption, IMHO.

I like DM a lot, not least because it makes Dune a better book.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 05 Jun 2013 21:25

Robspierre wrote:Another thought:


Frank's intentional destruction of the "hero" really pissed people off. That is why people like the other books less. There is no hero. Good vs Bad is not the theme. Too many people want good guys vs bad guys because it fits the narrow band of how they look upon stories.

Case in point, look at the shit Keith and Bobo write, they create "heroes," they set up the stories so that the reader has good vs bad. They pander to the base wants of the reading public. They force a "morality" on the story that does not belong because Frank was not interested in a static forced morality. The various moral aspects in the novels all change over the course of time, just like it has for centuries here on earth.

Rob


Dune wasn't really a Good vs. Evil story to be begin with. No one in the novel is really evil, except for the Harkonnens, but then the Harkonnens are just naturally nasty and mercenary. The Emperor isn't evil: just a dick who feels that he must destroy any honest noblemen who dare to become more popular than he is. The Bene Gesserit are concerned with survival, so they naturally hang out with the winning side while the Atreides are destroyed, even at the cost of losing the KH (losing Paul was very much Mohiam's fault). The real theme of Dune is divided into multiple themes, and consists of harsh nature vs. insulated and complacent society, oppressed yet resilient peoples vs. colonial corporate powers, compassionate and honest leaders vs. the overwhelmingly corrupt and brutal system, justice vs. unrestrained vengeance, human resourcefulness vs. base instincts, unique individuality vs. the norm, free will vs. predestination, and sense vs. unchecked emotions. Because the villains are so diverse in their motivations and mentalities, the villains were less pure evil were either motivated by a warped sense of vengeance (Yueh), by responding to a possible threat to his power (Shaddam), by survival (the BG), or by highly stimulating and expensive luxuries (the Harkonnens). What made them villainous is that they were such dicks about getting what they wanted, and the satisfaction of Dune's ending lay in Paul biting them back in the ass for what they did.

Anyway, the readers you right of Rob seem to have missed the fact that Paul at the end was already turning into a villain more destructive and ethically questionable than any of the people he brought down. Paul had better intentions than any of his enemies, and so did Leto II, but the way they went about their plans was far more catastrophic than what the Harkonnens had done. I guess that's why FH couldn't come up with villains as good as the Harkonnens in the other books, because Paul and family already became the antagonists. Well, there were the Tleilaxu, the Corrinos, and the Honored Matres, but the Harkonnens remained the best villains. After destroying the baddest of the bad, who is there to fight except your own self? Take for example Children of Dune, where the Corrinos were first supposed to be the main nasties, but then the situation switched where a devolved and possessed Alia became the real villain of the book. The Atreides are too powerful for everyone else to take on, so now they're doomed to deal with their unpredictable selves. I may not have wanted them to be villains, but the way FH pulled it off in most of the books blows my mind.
'...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky

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lotek
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby lotek » 07 Jun 2013 06:25

Dune wasn't really a Good vs. Evil story to be begin with.

harsh nature vs. insulated and complacent society, oppressed yet resilient peoples vs. colonial corporate powers, compassionate and honest leaders vs. the overwhelmingly corrupt and brutal system, justice vs. unrestrained vengeance, human resourcefulness vs. base instincts, unique individuality vs. the norm, free will vs. predestination, and sense vs. unchecked emotions


That sounds very much like good vs evil to me ;)

. After destroying the baddest of the bad, who is there to fight except your own self?


Let's hear what Scytale has to say.
"A creature who has spent his life creating one particular representation of his selfdom will die rather than become the antithesis of that representation."


:)
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Jodorowsky's Acolyte » 07 Jun 2013 22:09

lotek wrote:
Dune wasn't really a Good vs. Evil story to be begin with.

harsh nature vs. insulated and complacent society, oppressed yet resilient peoples vs. colonial corporate powers, compassionate and honest leaders vs. the overwhelmingly corrupt and brutal system, justice vs. unrestrained vengeance, human resourcefulness vs. base instincts, unique individuality vs. the norm, free will vs. predestination, and sense vs. unchecked emotions


That sounds very much like good vs evil to me ;)

. After destroying the baddest of the bad, who is there to fight except your own self?


Let's hear what Scytale has to say.
"A creature who has spent his life creating one particular representation of his selfdom will die rather than become the antithesis of that representation."


:)


Well played, lotek. Well played. :) My point is that the villains are not evil for evil sake, and are motivated by other factors rather than just wanting to be bad and mean. They're more self-rationalizing and self-righteous assholes rather than 2D Flash Gordon villains, whose villainous actions stem from profiting from the corrupt system than by defying it. They are not renegades, but are representatives of the norm that is unanimously accepted by society to a dangerous degree. Their motives are more complicated as well than, let's say, the bulk of supervillains who are enrolled in The Guild of Calamitous Intent from The Venture Bros.
'...all those who took part in the rise and fall of the Dune project learned how to fall one and one thousand times with savage obstinacy until learning how to stand. I remember my old father who, while dying happy, said to me: "My son, in my life, I triumphed because I learned how to fail."' -Alejandro Jodorowsky

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Nietzsche's mustache » 29 Jul 2013 05:04

Sandwurm88 wrote:(No talk about BH and KJA crap here) I've noticed that a lot of people on Sci-Fi forums, as well as those who are "serious literature" snobs often give FH's original Dune a lot of respect, but essentially none to any of Dune's five sequels. I know that there are people in this forum who count each of the six Dune Chronicles as their favorite in the series, and definitely the vast majority of fans here especially have an appreciation for God Emperor, which is probably my favorite in the series, although the original and Heretics are quite close.

Specifically, I remember someone on a comments section or forum being like, "I loved Dune, but the sequels went downhill quickly. God Emperor was GOD AWFUL." When I read this, I remember being like, "Fucking cretin!!!AGH!!"
And another person on the forum was like, " I read all six but God Emperor really killed the series for me"...So what is it that makes all the FH Dune sequels not so well-liked? Maybe it's because the first one, Messiah ( probably my least favorite of the six), did not live up to the original's glory at all. What's your opinion on why nobody outside of big Dune fans seems to like the FH sequels, especially GEoD which seems to be the favorite of many people here...or if you are one of those people who hates the sequels...why??


I had to convince a friend that he had to, at least, reach GEoD. He read this http://litreactor.com/columns/the-sleeper-must-awaken-a-dune-primer article and stopped after Dune (although he loved it and was curious about the sequels). I finally persuaded him to disregard the infidels (or lazy cretins) who argued against reading past Dune, and I believe he is enjoying DM; which leads me to ask, Freak, how can you hate DM? I loooved that book from the very first time I read it. I won't go into details, they have been thoroughly discussed in this thread (among others), but I must say that I find it to be charmingly shakespearean. Then again, I admit that opinions are like assholes...

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=pWdd6_ZxX8 ... Wdd6_ZxX8c

(Edited to state that the above included link is from The Big Lebowski. I couldn't get it to work with the preview :think: )
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Freakzilla » 29 Jul 2013 19:56

I don't really hate it. It's actually pretty damned good. Just my least favorite in the series.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Kronz » 18 Sep 2013 13:06

I have read so many reviews of GEoD saying it is boring or sexist and/or attacking FH that I can't help but wonder if I read the same book. So yes it has some of the lengthiest dialogue chapters and Leto does have absurd views on sex and gender roles, but it also has so many exciting passages that are extremely memorable. People often seem to think Leto is a mouthpiece for Herbert's own beliefs. I seriously doubt that. It felt more to me that he was a clear antagonist, among many. Aside from Moneo and Duncan it is easy to dislike everyone. That does not detract from the novel at all. I guess GEoD is a book you "get" or you don't. I also don't see how it is even remotely hard to understand. Compared to DM it was incredibly easy to read, for instance.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby Vislor Turlough » 07 Nov 2013 05:55

I found this board by chance whilst looking for the Bruce Pennington cover art from the ‘70s (?) editions of the first four books. Having scanned this thread (so apologies if this is not a well-informed comment) I’d just like to say that I was surprised to find that it seems as if Dune Messiah is not the most well-regarded of the six novels. God Emperor is a cracking novel, but I’d personally place Children higher, and Messiah at the top. IMHO Messiah is the best of the six as a work of literature. When I was an undergraduate I seriously considered writing my dissertation on Messiah (in the end I wrote a comparative analysis of Great Expectations/ David Copperfield w/ The Mill On The Floss/Middlemarch); it’s a while since I’ve read Messiah with my English Lit. BA Hons. hat on, but it always strikes me as a pretty much perfect Tragedy in the original Greek (Aristotelian) sense. The SF nature of the piece, specifically prescience, allows Herbert to analyse the Free Will vs. Determinism debate from all angles, in ways that wouldn’t be possible in a non-genre novel; and as inevitability is at the core of the ancient Greek concept of Tragedy, the plot goes hand-in-hand with the premise so beautifully that the novel is by far the tightest, best integrated, most eloquent, affecting & penetrating study of these themes I’ve ever read (including Shakespeare et al). The short length of the work really supports the tautness, and the strong grip on theme & plot means there is no chaff or padding at all. Every scene is equally important, every scene progresses either theme or plot or both, every scene reinforces & refracts the others; and I find that the set-pieces that I admire most are all to be found in Messiah. For example, off the cuff from memory, Alia & Hayt’s examination of the desiccated Fremen corpse in the desert; Alia’s nude workout; Alia’s “sermon” in the temple; Bijaz’ meeting with the retired Feydakin leader in the suburbs; his later activation of Hayt; Mohiam’s long trip to the throne room etc, etc; and most pertinently, Paul’s prescient vision of the falling moon on the hidden ledge of his palace.
I can understand why casual SF fans – and especially non-genre readers who’ve tackled Dune out of curiosity – might not bother with the sequels or find them rewarding; but I am very surprised indeed at the idea of committed SF fans & genre critics not placing Messiah at the top of the pile. YMMV of course, but for me Messiah is Herbert’s best novel by quite a margin, and would easily place in my top three SF novels of all time. The only competition would be one or more of the various books from Gene Wolfe’s Solar Cycle . . . but then, I’m a sucker for the “Viewers Are Geniuses” trope 
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby georgiedenbro » 24 Sep 2014 12:03

jakoye wrote:
lotek wrote:That's their biggest sin I reckon.


I do not know which of their sins is the biggest... all I know is that they are legion.


:lol:

I think Dune will succeed with many readers because its story carries you easily from point to point, and if you fail to commit yourself to do the necessary work to understand what's happening you'll miss the meaning but will still be swept through the events acceptably. Starting from Messiah onwards, if you don't care to do work as a reader you will not be carried through the story at all; you'll reach some contemplative chapter, not bother trying to understand it, and the story will halt suddenly. In this sense I think Dune is the most perfect and complete book of the series, because it functions completely on all levels including that of the story being fluid and functioning easily on a mechanical level. The later books all have certain parts that lack the mechanical property of 'story progression' but are the only bridges between one part of the book and the next. This means that Dune can be read by a 'lazy' or casual reader and will be complete for them (even if we know they only scratched the surface) but the subsequent books will almost be incomplete, with the contemplative chapters being some weird nonsense breaking up the story and with the story itself therefore not following logically or making sense.

Take Messiah for example: If you take the end of the Edric audience scene, with Paul, Stilgar and Korba, and this scene is not understood - the following parts of the book will seem bizarre, especially Stilgar's apparently 'random' change in behavior. Take the scene with Bijaz and Hayt - if this scene comes across as a garbled mess to a reader then what follows will appear also to be totally out of the blue. Messiah has many scenes like this, where the story will fail if you don't follow some conversation or other. The same is true to some extent (although Messiah is the worst in this regard) of the other books as well, but not really at all for Dune.
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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby MuaB'Beep » 25 Sep 2014 04:43

georgiedenbro wrote:Take Messiah for example: If you take the end of the Edric audience scene, with Paul, Stilgar and Korba, and this scene is not understood - the following parts of the book will seem bizarre, especially Stilgar's apparently 'random' change in behavior. Take the scene with Bijaz and Hayt - if this scene comes across as a garbled mess to a reader then what follows will appear also to be totally out of the blue. Messiah has many scenes like this, where the story will fail if you don't follow some conversation or other. The same is true to some extent (although Messiah is the worst in this regard) of the other books as well, but not really at all for Dune.


I suppose because Dune was serialized first - chapter after chapter was printed so each had to be some sort of closed literary space with clear conclusion. Dune Messiah was written as one solid book and when Frank knew that he entered Kwisatz Haderah mode - and just wrote in a constant flow. This continued culminating in God Emperor of Dune, the best worst book ever written.

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Re: Why do the FH Dune sequels get no respect outside of us?

Postby distrans » 13 Jan 2018 23:16

ive probably read the series a dozen times,
all except dune. the first book just doesnt interest me...


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