Sirk TV Book Review: DUMPITER [Matador]
The idea of full blown satire in a space adventure is a hard angle to pull off across the board. The most successful in most circles has been “The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy” because it understood the balance between humor and, simply, bafflement. “Dumpiter” [David Fletcher/Matador/336pgs] follows along the same precipice where, like the hero of “Hitchhiker”, the hero here, Renton, simply is baffled and reactive to any situation he is in. The story process follows that spaceships are simply disappearing all over the universe for no apparent reason and the crews of spaceships seem to be going batty. The basis of this seems to be in the smuggling of paint vats. Renton and an unsuspecting cop (who thinks he is an adult film producer that she wants to audition for) become the focus of an odd fat man whom we eventually find out wants to become immortal. The novel turns into an extended road trip but it is the progression in Renton’s mind that seems to add the dose of oddity. There is also something called “hyper-blurting” which happens when Renton enters hyperspace betraying his innermost thoughts, The cop Madeline does the same thing adding to an unusual sexual tension which seems odd since Renton seems a mess to begin wish. A supervisor at one of the spaceports ends up being the final structure to their threesome. He himself is a reptilian, possibly a crocodile, on two legs who is out to solve a mystery. They all eventually end up on a planet called Dumpiter which is where all the spaceships and scrap in the universe ends up to be reprocessed, except that it has just made the place literally a dump. They also end up on another planet which is populated by animals the size of buildings that are milked by machines that can fit underneath them. This all culminates to a resolute end which functions well. The different ideas that Renton’s hair is very important plus the fact that Madeline herself is dosed by a process called “un-remembering” motivates the confusion. A large machine called the Easipeas, which obliterates everything, figures specifically into the conclusion. While the start of the proceedings starts off slow, the pace and tone of the book does gain speed in creating a weird conundrum of unbalanced people in the universe relating directly back to “Hitchhikers”. Its progression and settings are unique to say the least which adds to its charm.