Science Fiction Fantasy  
Go Back   Science Fiction Fantasy Chronicles: forums > Books and Writing > Authors > Iain M Banks

Iain M Banks Discussion board for the writings of Iain M Banks.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old 24th November 2009, 08:45 PM   #1 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,937
Affront

Affront, the fascinating species in Excession have such strange physiques - best described on wiki:

Quote:
An average adult Affronter's body consists of a floating, bulbous mass about two metres in diameter, which hangs from a frilled gas sac one to five metres in diameter depending on their desired buoyancy and which can be deflated and covered by protective plates.
Six to eleven tentacles of varying length and thickness grow from the central mass, of which at least four end in leaf shaped paddles. Many affronters have lost one or more tentacles in combat or duels. Beaks on the front and rear of the central mass cover the creature's mouth and genitals, respectively. The eyes and ears are held on stalks above the fore beak (they also have a sensor bump atop the gas sac). An anus/gas vent is located in the bottom centre of the main body. The latter is one of their sources of propulsion, though they usually 'walk' on their limbs or 'paddle' through the air unless in a hurry.
I found very difficult to picture it in my mind. Can anyone draw a picture of it?
Allegra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2009, 11:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
Here kitty kitty kitty!
 
gully_foyle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Australia, Queensland
Posts: 1,260
Re: Affront

I just imagined a leathery medusa jellyfish with attitude and an annoyingly raucous laugh.

Something like this pic (add your own eye stalks).



Propelled by ones own farts, now there's an unpleasant thought. Even if their atmosphere was breathable, I'd still be wearing my gelsuit.
gully_foyle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2009, 12:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
|-O-| (-O-) |-O-|
 
Rodders's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Essex
Posts: 2,651
Re: Affront

Pyan's going to love those Tentacles.
Rodders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2009, 01:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,937
Re: Affront

LOL! That's quite close. The beaks and eye stalks are the tricky part.

Oh yes the gelsuit is definitely a MUST! (I still can't believe Byr really wanted to become one of those!)
Allegra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2009, 04:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
|-O-| (-O-) |-O-|
 
Rodders's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Essex
Posts: 2,651
Re: Affront

I think that he enjoyed their attitudes though rather than their looks. (Understandable.)
Rodders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th November 2009, 08:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,937
Re: Affront

True but it puzzles me even more because a major part of their attitudes is treating other lesser species with playful brutality and sadism. Byr must be really bored of Culture! In fact I wouldn't mind the war-against-Affront conspirator Minds got their way but then it won't be a good book.
Allegra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th November 2009, 08:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
|-O-| (-O-) |-O-|
 
Rodders's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Essex
Posts: 2,651
Re: Affront

Wasn't part of the story involve the Affont being a little embarressed about the power (military might) that the Culture was actually capable of? I seem to remember them coming off as a bit arrogant and that the Affront actually thought that they could take on the Culture. Maybe i'm just miss-remembering it.
Rodders is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26th November 2009, 08:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
Bearly Believable
 
Ursa major's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: UK: ENGLAND:
Posts: 13,597
Re: Affront

Quote:
Originally Posted by Allegra View Post
True but it puzzles me even more because a major part of their attitudes is treating other lesser species with playful brutality and sadism.
And they were not much friendleir to their own young, if my memory serves me correctly. (They are not the only one of Banks's aliens to do this; I seem to recall the Dwellers having this tendency in The Algebraist.)
Ursa major is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27th November 2009, 09:42 AM   #9 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,937
Re: Affront

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodders View Post
Wasn't part of the story involve the Affont being a little embarressed about the power (military might) that the Culture was actually capable of? I seem to remember them coming off as a bit arrogant and that the Affront actually thought that they could take on the Culture. Maybe i'm just miss-remembering it.
Well, The Affront knew they had no match against the Culture but - (spoiler) - they were tricked into starting the war and thought they could win if they got the super power from Excession.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ursa major View Post
And they were not much friendleir to their own young, if my memory serves me correctly. (They are not the only one of Banks's aliens to do this; I seem to recall the Dwellers having this tendency in The Algebraist.)
Yes I think Banks enjoys to create blood thirsty aliens such as Ibirans, Azads, The Eaters... Otherwise, what's the reason for Special Circumstances to meddle with alien affairs? Civilising uncivilised species is the Culture's hobby (and who can blame them)!
Allegra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th November 2009, 06:23 AM   #10 (permalink)
Pretentious Avatar Alert.
 
J-WO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Leicester
Posts: 2,198
Blog Entries: 58
Re: Affront

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodders View Post
Wasn't part of the story involve the Affont being a little embarressed about the power (military might) that the Culture was actually capable of? I seem to remember them coming off as a bit arrogant and that the Affront actually thought that they could take on the Culture. Maybe i'm just miss-remembering it.
Its interesting to compare Excession with Consider Phlebas. Both books with a warlike enemy, but the Culture's response is different. Apart from a reactionary minority of plotters, the Culture seems to have matured by Excession, having learned by its mistakes.
J-WO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30th November 2009, 12:25 PM   #11 (permalink)
Here kitty kitty kitty!
 
gully_foyle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Australia, Queensland
Posts: 1,260
Re: Affront

While we're on it, can someone sketch a Dweller? I kind of envisioned two jellyfish globes (as above) stuck together ala a yo-yo, and then dressed up in a garish military costume.
gully_foyle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18th June 2012, 04:42 AM   #12 (permalink)
Science fiction fantasy
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Ireland
Posts: 15
Re: Affront

Yeah I found the affront particularly tricky to picture in my mind aswell.
Andrew Short is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 08:17 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.