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View Poll Results: By Any Means Necessary
GOD!!!!! If someone asks if he's a god you say YES. 8 22.22%
An ego maniacal award winning writer who THINKS he's god. Might as well go for the really satisfying ones. 2 5.56%
man taken for all in all, I shall not look upon his like again. 3 8.33%
talented man who has accomplished some great things and touched many peoples lives with his words. What he does in the privacy of his own home we may never know...... 22 61.11%
nom de plume for Judy Blume. Who'd have thunk it...... 1 2.78%
Voters: 36. You may not vote on this poll

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Old December 15th 04, 09:30   #1
2aMageing
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JMS: The man and the legend

I have been reading some of the 'non speculation' over in the No speculation thread in B5 world about JMS and his rather confrontational reactions over time. It's worth discussing how we as ardent fans of his work may tend to elevate him to an unrealistic level of purity, decency, and all around perfectly enlightened persona.

I would dare to suggest that JMS is very much like any individual who has done great, landmark, or just plain high quality breakthrough work. These people are often unique thinkers, often bold, and like everyone else possessing strengths and weaknesses of character.

Actually it seems like frequenly the above average accomplishments come from someone of above average eccentricities. If their gift happens to be the written word then perhaps they may be able to tone down their own uniqueness through carefully chosen communication.

I have read that Einstein was a very poor family man and perhaps even somewhat sexist and hard on the women in his life. Great paintes, poets, scientists, and philosophers have become almost stereotyped by a frequent weakness in their interpersonal capabilities. With great strengths and skills there must also come great weaknesses and inabilities. Balance and change may be the only two constants of this existance.

As fans we tend to glow to great extremes about the material the people who brought it into existance. But it seems like we sometimes assume more than we have evidence to base the judgements upon. But than again maybe I'm way off here and there really are near perfect people running around cranking out great Science Fiction.

Note: JMS is a great writer, it shows in multiple series, and I wish to take NOTHING away from that. But Homeruns and Hugo winning tv shows don't speak to the character of a person. I won a Starfox jacket for my skill in the US based competition for that Nintendo game. It does not mean I'm the most skilled ladies man alive.......although it could still be true despite the lack of evidence........
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Old December 15th 04, 14:46   #2
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

He's a very talented writer, overrated by some, underrated by many- as none of his shows have had much success or become "hit shows". I don't know anyone that watches Babylon 5 or Jeremiah in real life. But he's also just a guy. I don't take the values of his shows as the gospel, and as smart and rational as he comes off in the newslists, he isn't always right.
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Old December 15th 04, 15:16   #3
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

To be fair, I don't recall seeing anyone around here pile heaping mounds of praise on him as a person. His writing, yes, but that is a judgement and appreciation of his work.

I don't know anything about him outside of that and I don't care. I don't see it discussed anywhere. I do seem to recall reading encounters with him during cons and on-line and nothing stood out as particularly wonderful or terrible.

I also don't see the point of considering his personal life. That's his business and anyone who cares about it is nosy. Same goes for any real celebrity. Why anyone gives a shit as to George Clooney is dating is beyond me.

The point: it doesn't freakin' matter.
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Old December 15th 04, 15:26   #4
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

I'm with you. I look at JMS as a man with a talent I enjoy very much, I do not feel I need to know anything else.
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Old December 15th 04, 16:21   #5
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

I really respect his writing and his industry knowledge.
What I really admire is his respect for the audience, and his ability to resist using that lead pipe to bust in our heads.

When it comes to his political opinions, I may not allways agree but I still respect them. Again, he's not using the lead pipe.
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Old December 15th 04, 19:39   #6
RW7427
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

He is afterall The Great Maker.
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Old December 16th 04, 08:07   #7
2aMageing
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

Quote:
To be fair, I don't recall seeing anyone around here pile heaping mounds of praise on him as a person. His writing, yes, but that is a judgement and appreciation of his work.

I don't know anything about him outside of that and I don't care. I don't see it discussed anywhere. I do seem to recall reading encounters with him during cons and on-line and nothing stood out as particularly wonderful or terrible.

I should really qualify my topic to the time period when JMS was more of a hot topic, back when B5 was wrapping up, Crusade was getting hosed, and Jeremiah was just warming up. When he was front stage he was reguarded as "the great maker" by many and probably still is in some circles.

But this discussion is pertinent to any major figure who has developed a phenomenal concept. If Gene Roddenberry were still alive and kicking stuff out he would almost certainly be praised to excess in whatever he was doing, at least by a certain dedicated fandom.

Maybe it's just me ("It's just you.....") but it seems like Science Fiction fans are as likely as anyone to make a religion out of a concept's creator and his/her work. When Azimov was kickin it there were legion who had his back no matter the topic of discussion.

If sci fi is not to a persons liking than consider the Mark Mcguire fandom that arose during his HR run. Find me 10 people during his height of popularity that were big fans, but didn't also "feel" that he was probably an all around great guy as well as a powerful baseball hitter. JMS may have been a dated example but certainly a bit more fun considering the source that originated this board and the concept that origianlly drew so many here.

Dare I count how many times the letters JMS come up in the top 5 threads in B5 world. I dare not......I don't have that kind of time. But it'd be alot....I think, maybe.....probably very possibly.....
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Old December 16th 04, 13:22   #8
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

"... he was a good, kind man"
"You came all this way to say only that??"
"You came just as far to say less"

... and so it begins.
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Old December 16th 04, 13:46   #9
2aMageing
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

Quote:
"... he was a good, kind man"
"You came all this way to say only that??"
"You came just as far to say less"

... and so it begins.

Hey. That's not a bad idea. We should get a panel of completely impartial (wink wink) people together to judge his place in history. I think we can find some sci fi haters out there can't we???
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Old December 16th 04, 21:20   #10
Jan
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Re: JMS: The man and the legend

Quote:
I would dare to suggest that JMS is very much like any individual who has done great, landmark, or just plain high quality breakthrough work. These people are often unique thinkers, often bold, and like everyone else possessing strengths and weaknesses of character.

To the contrary, JMS is very much like any individual. Period. Full stop. He generally insists on not being held to any different standard than anybody else and, from what I've seen over the years, treats people the way they treat him.

I find your 'poll' somewhat distasteful, I'm afraid.

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