Tuesday, November 23, 2021

DOUBLE REVIEW: Damnation Alley

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Damnation Alley
by Roger Zelazny
In a post-apocalyptic world, Hell Tanner is tasked to haul anti-serum, from coast to coast, to save the citizens of Boston from the plague. 
I have NO IDEA what consumed me to pick this book up to read, but I did. 
In a future time, after a devastating nuclear war, the USA is reduced to the nations of California and Boston on either coast. How either one would be spared from nuclear strikes is quite beyond me, but I wasn't the author. Instead, almost everything in between the two is either destroyed or some festering pit of nightmares. The lands are inhospitable and the weather is really unpredictable. It could end up raining dead fish and boulders at a moment's notice and they would ruin your day really fast.  
This book is about Hell Tanner's adventures as he crosses the country, crossing DAMNATION ALLEY, to get to Boston, in an attempt to help save what's left of humanity. 
The writing, for the most part, is okay. Some aspects are pretty clever, some, not so much. It's very readable, but it seemed a little disjointed and seemed to drag at points. I mean, how many times can Hell get his ass kicked and have a multi-page moment of introspection?   

It's just OKAY and not worth it to spend much money on this book to read it for the hell of it.

Damnation Alley
In a post-apocalyptic world, survivors from an Air Force base decide to drive cross country to Albany, NY.
I had the vaguest of memories of this movie from my childhood. I remembered something about a flash flood, and something about some really hungry roaches, and something about gang tornadoes. So, when I started reading the book I decided to revisit this old movie.  

I suppose that during the 70s they were looking for all sorts of source material for disaster movies. Goodness knows there were all sorts out there. Apparently someone came across the book Damnation Alley and thought it was a worthwhile plot, let's just dumb it up. So, in this version, in a post-atomic war world, four dudes decide to cross DAMNATION ALLEY because their base burned down in a freak accident. Be careful kiddies! Playboy magazines are hazardous to your health! They can lead to massive explosions! The movie is about their adventures as they cross the country, headed for Albany because they have a radio signal broadcasting. Okay. Sounds like a plan to me! So they cross paths with a gang of tornadoes, man-eating roaches, fearsome hillbillies, and a massive flash flood that wash them from Detroit to New York. How about that!
This movie was pretty bad and I would NOT recommend spending a nickel to see it. The only part worth watching are then they show the Playboy magazines and Janice (Dominique Sanda) who seemed to be the last remaining woman in Damnation Alley, and a damned sexy one at that!  

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