Harlan Ellison Recovering from Stroke

Many Sequart readers are fans of the work of the science fiction master Harlan Ellison. Many also know that last week Ellison suffered a major stroke, paralyzing his right arm and leg. For those concerned about his condition and recovery, fellow Star Trek writer (and sometimes Sequart contributor) David Gerrold posted several updates on his Facebook page, saying that Ellison “punched the Angel of Death in the face,” and that his mind is still very active. Gerrold visited Ellison in the hospital on Monday with some friends and found him in great spirits, doing physical therapy, speaking very clearly (in fact talking a blue streak) and clearly unaffected mentally by the stroke. Ellison and Gerrold’s conversation about language led to a classic Star Trek joke: “The difference between Klingon and Yiddish is that Klingon has vowels.”

Gerrold and Ellison both contributed important episodes of the Original Series, and Ellison’s work has recently been brought back to the spotlight with a very beautiful and elegant comic book adaptation of his original teleplay of “City on the Edge of Forever”, the final issue of which will be issued soon. Ellison was pictured with the comics creators looking older than in his heyday (he is 80, after all) but still very irascible and very much the Turk he was in the 1960s, when he waved a script in Gene Roddenberry’s face angrily.

I’m sure all of us at Sequart wish Mr Ellison a speedy recovery, and we’re glad to hear it wasn’t worse.

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Independent scholar Ian Dawe has been writing for Sequart since November 2013. Before that, he had a mixed background, initially in science (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry), where he earned an MSc from Simon Fraser University and then an MA in Film from the University of Exeter in the UK. He spent a decade teaching at the college level, delivering courses in Genetics, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Biological Anthropology and Film History. His academic work includes peer-reviewed papers on the work of Alan Moore, Harvey Pekar for Studies in Comics and a dissertation on Terry Gilliam for the University of Exeter. He has presented papers at several major academic conferences including Slayage 2014, Magus: Transdisciplinary Approaches to the Work of Alan Moore in 2010 (in the wizard's hometown of Northampton), Comics Rock and the International Conference of the Humanities in 2012, and at the Southwest Popular Culture Association Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2014 and 2015. He has contributed to several books, including a chapter about the TV show Archer in "James Bond and Popular Culture" and two chapters on Breaking Bad for "Breaking Bad and Masculinity", both now available from McFarland. At Sequart, he has authored a chapter for New Life and New Civiliations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, A Long Time Ago and two more upcoming books on Star Wars comics. He has also contributed to books on Alan Moore and 1970s Horror Comics. He is currently planning a full-length book on Better Call Saul. Ian currently lives in Vancouver, BC.

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Also by Ian Dawe:

The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe


A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe


A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics


A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe


New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics


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