Monday, April 13, 2015
My Tank is Fight! - Review
An Evolution Of The Tank Review
with Andy Hoare
Those with bosses that don’t monitor employees’ web browsing history too closely might know Zack Parsons as one of the guys behind SomethingAwful.com, a website that glories in (and in many cases is responsible for) some of the most eccentric and oddball features on and about the global interwebs. This isn’t a review of SomethingAwful.com though—it’s a review of My Tank Is Fight! Deranged Inventions of WWII, Zack Parsons’ first book and one that’s been on my wish list ever since I heard it was being published back in 2006. Shamefully, I’ve only just read it, and if you haven’t then you should feel just as bad as I do.
My Tank Is Fight is a trawl through the lost files of WWII innovation, with a focus on machines and ideas that were either too mad, too expensive, too ahead of their time or just too contrary to the laws of physics to actually work. In his introduction, the author describes his interest and approach as ‘pulp history’, a term that describes the book’s content very well. At some stage, someone thought that all of these inventions might actually work (and that includes an aircraft carrier made of ice!). They can all be appreciated in terms we might think of as fanciful or ‘pulpy’ but perhaps because they are all grounded (if tenuously) in reality, they are often far more interesting to read about than works of pure fantasy.