Time to Retire the Rods From God

2 Apr

GlobalFrequency

So “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” is not a terrible film. But its most impressive sci-fi plot twist is that Cobra Commander threatens to drop rods of inert, albeit very tough metal on major cities from orbit, known colloquially and by military guys with really dark senses of humor as “rods from God.”

A brief list of works that contain this trope, invented in real life by SF writer Jerry Pournelle in the 1950’s while he was working for Boeing, follows:

—”Footfall” by Pournelle himself and frequent collaborator Larry Niven

—”Tom Clancy’s EndWar” by “David Michaels

—”Anathem” by Neal Stephenson

—”Global Frequency” by Warren Ellis and Gene Ha (beautiful page by Ha excerpted above)

And many more.

So let’s put that one to bed, folks.

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