Sucker MC

January 8, 2007

Now that we’re done with glad tidings and good will to all men, let’s pause awhile and gloat — shall we? — as Dave Itzkoff delivers a satisfyingly thorough pummeling to Next, Michael Crichton’s latest bit of ooga-booga scaremongering wrapped in third-rate science fiction. Crichton’s small-minded attack on one of his more lethally accurate critics, combined with the extraordinary level of flatulent self-importance on display in his recent books, has made him fair game for critics, so I expect (and hope!) we’ll be seeing quite a bit more of this.

But for now, let’s savor a few of the better Itzkoff lines: 

Though the moment may lack the inherent gravitas of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s encounter with Abraham Lincoln, or even Elvis Presley’s private audience with Richard Nixon, surely history should reserve a special place for the day in 2005 when Michael Crichton was invited to the White House to meet with George W. Bush. Imagine: the modern era’s leading purveyor of alarmist fiction, seated side by side with Michael Crichton. Oh, to be a concealed recording system in that Oval Office! Did Crichton confess to his host that he’d been inspired to write “Rising Sun” by a certain Poppy in chief with a propensity for puking on Japanese dignitaries? Did our president tell Crichton he found the dinosaurs of “Jurassic Park” every bit as frightening as our ancestors did at the dawn of time, 6,000 years ago?     



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