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Giesy, J U

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(1877-1947) US physiotherapist, screenwriter and Pulp-magazine writer, author of many stories, most not sf, in Argosy and All-Story Weekly 1914-1934. All for His Country (21 February-14 March 1914 Cavalier; 1915), which combines Future War and Edisonade elements, pits a young inventor's radium-powered plane (see Elements), complete with Antigravity, against the treacherous Japanese, who burn Los Angeles (see California) to the ground, and who boast their own Weapon, an advanced aerial torpedo; ominously, Giesy also accuses Japanese-Americans from California of betrayal (see Yellow Peril). The Jason Croft or Palos trilogy – Palos of the Dog Star Pack (13 July-10 August 1918 All-Story Weekly; cut 1965), The Mouthpiece of Zitu (5 July-2 August 1919 All-Story Weekly; cut 1965) and Jason, Son of Jason (16 April-21 May 1921 Argosy; cut 1966) – features Croft's adventures on Palos, a planet of Sirius. Derivative of Edgar Rice Burroughs's Martian stories, these novels are also highly practical, for Croft triumphs not through his own strength but because of an encyclopedic knowledge of Earth's technologies of destruction. Giesy's further sf includes a Utopia, "In 2112" (10 August 1912 Cavalier), written with his frequent collaborator, the Utah lawyer Junius Smith (1883-1945), and a number of humorous stories about the eccentric Dr Xenophon Xerxes Zapt. Giesy's sf – tempered as it is by a devout belief in astrology – has dated and is now of historical interest, but for years he was considered second only to Burroughs as an author of the Planetary Romance.

Of Giesy's several screenplays, of most interest is perhaps The Eyes of Mystery (1918), a haunted house tale directed by Tod Browning. [RB/JC]

John Ulrich Giesy

born Chillicothe, Ohio: 6 August 1877

died Salt Lake City, Utah: 8 September 1947



Jason Croft/Palos

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