Chapter by Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were a reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.
At this point tonight I was planning to go over an interview with the director of the new Masters Of The Universe theatrical (and I’m assuming live-action) film. Except that he said pretty much nothing other than the usual “this script is awesome, you won’t see what’s coming and I’m a huge fan of this property, I swear I am, honest” nonsense you usually get. I’ll keep you up to date. so with a hole, let’s do some reading. I need something to soothe my nerves with this hurricane business. Or if my power is out I prepared this article beforehand. Hurray for auto-scheduling!
The last three chapters has been Quaid being horny. Now he’s going to work and maybe working a jackhammer will keep his mind off of sex…insert Arnold Schwarzenegger joke here.
Chapter Four: Work
So much for that theory. The story starts off with Quaid annoyed (complaining indirectly via the narrator) about the throng of people he has to go through to get to work. We see the X-Ray machine from the movie (and if I were doing a video review there would be a TSA joke here) and Quaid is disappointed that the image is just the skeleton instead of getting to see women naked. This book came out in 1990 (June, according to the publishing date) and it seems like it’s already making a Schwarzenegger joke long before the sex scandals.
Note also that I’m only up to page two here. And by the time we get to page three some girl has wanted the same thing when he goes through the machine and we get more about how horny he is. Is Lori adding Viagra to his diet?
Apparently the trains run every six minutes when they should run every three, and Quaid hates the delay. Anybody out there want to punch him? When he finally does get on the train, he hears the ad for Rekall (because poor literacy is…hang on, I have a “cease and desist from Linkara), which shows what prose does differently than film. In the movie it was rather quick, but the novel has to go over Quaid’s thoughts (positive) while describing everything in the video (boring).
Then he finally gets to work–which is less than half of a chapter called “Work”. They should have called it “Train”, because that’s where most of the chapter takes place. Here we get another shot of how his muscles, procured through the fine art of jackhammering, get Lori going WE GET IT, PIERS, DOUGLAS QUAID IS A HORNY BASTARD! CAN WE MOVE ON! After hearing about the evils of automobile emissions and how everything runs on safe cold fusion now, Quaid asks his pal, Harry, about Rekall. Harry tries to talk him out of it (and we get I think the first instance of swearing in this book–a rare appearance in my library–with the end how Quaid ignores Harry’s advice in calling Rekall to set up an appointment.
I’ll give this chapter credit. While we still get the latest info from Quaid’s crotch, things besides sex and going to terrorist-strewn Mars come into play. In other words, things happen. Not a lot of things, but they still happen. The chapters are short but we’re up to the fourth chapter and it’s about time something happened. In our next installment we finally finish the set-up and get the plot moving. Yay!