Tag Archives: science

Recent Reads: The Martian

martianI’m trying to think of something I’ve read recently since it seems to have been so much time since I published a post. I read a lot so it’s not like I’ve not read anything it’s just a matter of choosing something. I thought of one… a book I hated reading: The Martian by Andy Weir. My friend Thomas and I were trying to work our way through some bestsellers and this was the first one we decided to try. He ripped through it like a pro. I started off strong and hobbled through it for a month… or two… or was it three?

I have a hard time reading a book I don’t like. Even when I’m determined to finish it. I mean, it was even made into a movie so it has to be good, right? Wrong. I didn’t even mind all of the crazy theoretical science. I think had Weir weaved it expertly into the narrative (a la Jules Verne) I could have followed the story more easily, but it wasn’t even the science that bothered me, it was: Mark Watney. One of the most annoying characters I’ve read to-date. He reminded me of that guy at a party who’s trying to be funny, but no one is laughing at his jokes. Maybe it was just me, but I did not find myself laughing at any of his many “wise-cracks.” He says, “Yippeee” way to many times and all I see is a teenage boy on a gamer message board.

Maybe one could argue, well, he’s that adult science-nerd type of guy who fits the character-type. But even what other characters said about him didn’t make sense. One even said he was chosen for the Mars mission because he’s “that kind of guy everyone likes” or something to that effect. I didn’t buy it. I do want to see the film because I think Matt Damon would make me like this guy. Almost like when you read a script and you can’t wait to see how an actor adds depth to a flat person on the page. Watney had no depth. There’s was no reason I wanted to see him get off of Mars. And, hey, I’m not rooting for the main character if I don’t like him. None of the others characters drew me out either, they seemed more like caricatures from a 90s sitcom or some of them were so bland they just blended into each other. Bring on the movie, I’m done with the book.