Email this review


Battlefield Earth (1982) was nothing if not long--but here's the 600-page opening volume of a projected 10-book, 1.2 million-word series entitled Mission Earth. Alas, then, that quantity is no guide to quality. Narrator Soltan Gris, a sly, dimwitted legman in the Co-ordinated Information Apparatus, the Voltarian confederacy's dreaded secret police, is in jail writing a confession. Gris' problems center on planet Blito-P3, or Earth, which is scheduled for invasion by the human-alien Voltarians in a century or so. But agent Jettero Heller, an amiable daredevil with more powers than Superman, has brought disturbing news to the Emperor: the Earthmen are polluting their planet to death, thus rendering it useless to the future invaders. Something Must Be Done. So, lacking the resources for an immediate attack, the Emperor turns the matter over to vile Apparatus chief Lombar Hisst. Hisst, whose private plans to take over as Emperor involve Earth, is dismayed. He orders Gris to organize a spy mission in reverse: Heller, proceeding to Earth under Gris' control, will covertly release information on how to abate the pollution. Meanwhile--pay attention now--Hisst, safeguarding his private ambitions, secretly orders Gris to sabotage the mission at all costs. And most of what follows concerns Gris' difficulties in dealing with the vicious Apparatus bureaucracy and his impossible task in controlling the irrepressible Heller. So, a farcical plot inhabited by cartoon characters, and delivered in ringing, sardonic tones: a lurid and interminable comic-book. Oh--and count on a massive publicity campaign.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1985
Publisher: Bridge