When I was in the Disney College Program in Walt Disney World, there were two places where I could get discounted books: The Writer’s Stop bookstore in Disney Hollywood Studios and the cast member outlet store where they had amazing deals on everything! The Writer’s Stop was one of the few places I could use my cast member discount for food in the parks. They had coffee, pastries, and a great selection of new books. The cast member outlet store, where I could purchase discontinued items, props, damaged products, and six packs of Mickey Mouse apple sauce for 25 cents, also sold damaged books and books used for Disney education classes. I would visit both places as often as my meager stipend would allow and buy all the books I could, as well as pins and applesauce. I’m not sure where I got my copy of the first collection of John Carter of Mars stories. I suspect that the black line through the bar code means I found it at the cast member store.
John Carter of Mars
The three John Carter stories in this volume are imaginative and well-written, which might be more than one could expect from the creator of “Tarzan.” Most of the Martians are more than just humans in make-up. They have their own anatomy and their own cultures. Edgar Rice Burroughs gave thought to their evolution and how Mars, as he knew it, would influence species development.
At the start, John Carter of Mars is, in part, about toxic masculinity as all of Mars and its male citizens wage war against each other for no other reason than the love of conquest and proving one’s physical power. Men rule over women, who are mostly relegated to the role of needing to be being saved. One character, later in the book, provides a different look at the role of women and femininity as her character evolves.
John Carter realizes that he has power over the woman he falls in love with and tries to avoid his feelings. He refuses to tell her how he feels because he doesn’t want her to think she has to reciprocate in order for her life to be easier under his sway. Unfortunately, he succumbs to his inner pressure in a mild and manly way.
Still, John Carter is surprisingly relevant, which isn’t always the case with adventures written in the early 20th century.
“I know how strong a hold a creed, however, ridiculous it may be, may gain upon an otherwise intelligent people,” Coming from a former Confederate soldier, this is a strong indictment indeed.
If you want to read more about Disney and creativity, check out “Disneyland Is Creativity” and “The Haunted Mansion Is Creativity.” Read more about the Disney Company in “Penguinate! The Disney Company.” Check out other Disney stories at www.penguinate.weebly.com. If you’d like to get my copy of John Carter, let me know. Otherwise, use this affiliate link to get it on Amazon.