Thriller Character Names

Cheap thriller protagonists can have very “action-hero” names. Perhaps the most archetypal are Mack Bolan and Jack Reacher. Sometimes they can become ridiculously exaggerated, like “Dusky MacMorgan“. In the “middle” are these.

  • Mark Stone (MIA Hunter)
  • Luke Stone (Luke Stone)
  • Blake Murdock (SEAL Team Seven)
  • John Cody (Cody’s Army)
  • John Rourke (Survivalist)
  • David Saxon (Marine Force One)

But of all of these, my favorite character name has to be author Jon Land’s Blaine McCracken.

Vangelis’ Alpha

One of my latest musical obsessions has been Vangelis’ Alpha.

I like instrumental electronic music and have liked a lot of his past works. Apart from being well-written and catchy, this has one of my favorite musical trends-the slow start that gradually grows more and more lush. Alpha concludes with a massive triumphant blast of synths.

The cosmic theme of its original album fits perfectly with what feels like a journey through an increasingly beautiful landscape until the full wonders of the universe suddenly come into view.

The Invasion Novel Itch

A while ago, my specific cheap thriller itch was military sci-fi. Now, more recently, it seems to be “invasion novels” (Red Dawn, Tomorrow When The War Began, etc…). They’re not crowding out everything else, but still, I’m reading more of them than I used to. Don’t ask me why.

Where I’d Set a WW3 Story

If I wrote a conventional WWIII story, it’d probably be in…. Southern Europe. In a comment on a post depicting said theater in the WWIII 1987 TL, I described it as “an uncomfortable sideshow in rough terrain”, similar to the Italian front in World War II.

It’s not in spite of but because of this that the setting appeals to me.

  • It’s different and I like less-traveled locations.
  • It means I can slow the battles down, thanks to the terrain and the lower-tier forces. The CentFront is a little too er, fast. Not to mention deadly.


Technothriller Games

The role of video games in the decline of the technothriller cannot be discounted. Beyond this, looking at just how closely they matched is fascinating to me.

The first (Splinter Cell) is very unsurprising. The plots of the first few Splinter Cell games match the themes and formats of contemporary technothrillers almost exactly. What else would you expect from a game bearing the “Tom Clancy’s” name?

The second (Metal Gear) is a little trickier, thanks to Kojima’s er, “eccentricity”. The technothriller influence is still definitely there, and at least the original, more grounded Metal Gear Solid is still not that much worse, if at all, than some of the more out-there entries in the genre (which definitely exist).