[Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

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Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Asimov
71
60%
Clarke
24
20%
Heinlein
24
20%
 
Total votes: 119

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[Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby alexgmcm » Thu May 29, 2008 1:10 pm UTC

Well, the question is pretty self-explanatory, which one of the Big Three of Science Fiction do you prefer?

Personally I would have to say Asimov although I haven't read as much Clarke or Heinlein.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Endless Mike » Thu May 29, 2008 1:19 pm UTC

I thought this was going to be about Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. :(

Heinlein.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Plasma Man » Thu May 29, 2008 3:35 pm UTC

A moderately tough call, but for me Heinlein beats Clarke and Clarke beats Asimov.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Robin S » Thu May 29, 2008 3:37 pm UTC

I have to admit, I haven't actually read anything by Heinlein yet. From what I've read of the other two, though, I prefer Asimov somewhat. It's quite a close call, though.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby clockworkmonk » Thu May 29, 2008 3:50 pm UTC

For me the only choice is Clarke. I just love his hard science fiction, particularly short stories.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Gravitas Shortfall » Thu May 29, 2008 5:37 pm UTC

Heinlein. You just can't beat 'Job: a Comedy of Justice'.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Quixotess » Thu May 29, 2008 5:40 pm UTC

I actually haven't read Clarke or Heinlein, really. Asimov's pretty sweet.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Nebuduck » Thu May 29, 2008 6:44 pm UTC

I'm judging based on the first three Foundation, 2001 and Friday. And they're all pretty darned good. But the whole fact that Clarke was bloody brilliant in other areas too, like coming up with the idea of a satellite (I think?) and that sort of stuff swung it for me.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Day Tripper » Thu May 29, 2008 8:14 pm UTC

Asimov; more "readable" IMO, and just better plots. I, Robot is my favourite novel by him, and "The Last Question" is my favourite short story. Actually, I like the short stories of Clarke and Asimov, but it seems that they both write worse novels.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Mr. Beck » Thu May 29, 2008 8:19 pm UTC

Clarke and Asimov are both awesome, but Clarke won for me because his idea were more mind-stretching.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby kovan » Thu May 29, 2008 8:55 pm UTC

I really enjoyed the Foundation series even though it was a bit amateurish at the beginning (he was like 21 when he wrote The Foundation wasn't he?)

The Last Question is also my favorite short story, the humour in it is great.

Not to mention he won the Hugo award for "best all-time series" against LOTR.

He gets my vote.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby JayDee » Fri May 30, 2008 2:26 am UTC

You know, I'm pretty sure I still haven't read any of Asimovs S-F, unless Norby, the Mixed-Up Robot counts. Foundation is sitting on my to-read pile at the moment. Quick look says I haven't read any Clarke either. Since I read my first Heinlein stuff earlier this year, I'm thinking I'll get back to.

I do think Asimov has the coolest sounding name, though.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Mr. Beck » Fri May 30, 2008 3:29 am UTC

JayDee wrote:I do think Asimov has the coolest sounding name, though.

Mos' Def'.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby SkaBassist » Fri May 30, 2008 4:39 am UTC

I'd say Asimov did more for science fiction as a genre, but I prefer Clarke's stories.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Amnesiasoft » Fri May 30, 2008 3:41 pm UTC

I admit I haven't read Asimov or Heinlein, but the fact that I read Clarke means I must vote for Clarke.

Maybe that will change if I ever get around to stopping by Barnes & Nobles again.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Fri May 30, 2008 3:48 pm UTC

Asimov. Clarke was good, but not as consistently for me. Heinlein, I've only read two things of (Stranger in a Strange Land and Starship Troopers) and, while I liked the stories, he has a tendency to put his own political views into his work that grates at me a bit. All three were amazing, but I prefer Asimov over any of the others.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Narsil » Fri May 30, 2008 8:58 pm UTC

Asimov is always good, whereas there's some Clarke stuff that is just plain crap (oh god, don't ever read 3001: The Final Odyssey) but when he's good, god damn is he good.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Cheese » Fri May 30, 2008 10:35 pm UTC

Asimov as well, for pretty much the same reasons outlined above - he's consistently good, whereas others often have major mistakes.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Chugga » Sat May 31, 2008 3:11 am UTC

While I haven't read Heinlein, i picked Asimov because after reading one of his books i was inspired to devour the rest one after the other. I enjoyed the few Clarke books I've read, but they didn't cause this kind of compulsive reading for me.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby l33t_sas » Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:18 am UTC

Asimov, Clarke can be too mystical for me and I haven't read enough Heinlein to really judge.

Asimov is perfect though. Great style, great ideas, just awesome.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Something Awesome » Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:12 pm UTC

Frank Herbert. :P

Of those three, I haven't read any Clarke, have only read some short stories by Asimov (which are all amazing), and have read quite a bit of Heinlein throughout the years. So he gets my vote.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Vaniver » Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:53 pm UTC

I don't think I've read any Clarke, actually.

Asimov's books were almost always nice, but Heinlein had more... realism, maybe? All of the Asimov books I've read have been worthwhile, but Starship Troopers and The Moon is a Harsh Mistress forever have a place on my shelf.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Heisenberg » Tue Jun 03, 2008 6:24 pm UTC

This is not even a contest.

Asimov and Clarke pale in comparison to The Godfather. Those of you who haven't yet had the joy of reading him should pick up The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Sebeka2 » Tue Jun 03, 2008 9:51 pm UTC

Clarke's ok, and I've read everything of Asimov's that I can get my hands on (including some of the non-fiction, that man was a publishing powerhouse), but I've always disliked Heinlein. Maybe because I hated Stranger in a Strange Land and that colored everything else.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Rodan » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:53 am UTC

Suddenly I realized that I fail at sci-fi.
I'm fairly certain I haven't read anything by any of those people.
And I had to look up Heinlein.
I'm going to go slink off to the library.

(now, if it were Orwell and Adams and Dick...)

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Nath » Wed Jun 04, 2008 7:28 am UTC

I voted for Asimov. Clarke had some good ideas, but Asimov tends to be more readable. The only Heinlein I've read is Starship Troopers; while it was entertaining enough, it didn't seem particularly thought-provoking.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Reid » Thu Jun 05, 2008 8:13 pm UTC

I've barely read any Asimov, but what I've read hasn't really been that impressive to me. I've read a fair amount of Heinlein and thus far have only really enjoyed Starship Troopers. I need to read some Clarke and haven't yet. So I guess my vote is not Heinlein, until further research has been conducted.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby TheStranger » Thu Jun 05, 2008 9:37 pm UTC

Heinlein wins out in my book, but this is largely on Starship Troopers (one of my all time favorite books).
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Sulla158 » Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:49 am UTC

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Question[/url].


I agree with Something Awesome. I voted for Heinlein though. Its been a while since I've read Asimov and I've never read any Clarke, but Heinlein's books just always get me so caught up in the characters and settings I push on through to the end, and they seem to have as much meat as Asimov's, but seem more enjoyable to me.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Protector1 » Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:23 pm UTC

I voted Heinlein. He is pretty much the only author that successfully made time-travel story lines that I enjoyed (they do get pretty ridiculous though) and I love his quotes (specialization is for insects). I think my opinion is faulty in this case though, as I haven't read much Clarke.

My favorite Heinlein book is Time Enough for Love. (the two intermissions greatly contribute to this.)
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Various Varieties » Tue Jun 17, 2008 12:59 am UTC

I haven't read enough Asimov or Heinlein to really judge, but almost everything I've read by Clarke is excellent (and I've read Rama II...).

But really, I'm just posting in this thread in order to mention his Astounding Days: A Science Fictional Autobiography, which is about the magazine Astounding Stories (aka Analog), and Arthur C Clarke's experiences reading it (and getting published in it). He gently makes fun of some of the silliest concepts in stories published in the early issues, and the book contains lots of amusing anecdotes - particularly those involving WW2.

Seems to be out of print now, which is a shame.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Peregrine » Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:59 am UTC

Asimov led me to science fiction, and he is still my favourite, both as an author and a person (I insist people read his autobiography; I,Asimov). Heinlein's amazing as well, so a close second goes to him. I admittedly haven't read as much Clarke, so my opinion might be a bit skewed. Adams, Dick, Dickson, Del Rey, and Bester are also really high up there. I'm going to attempt to end my post here, before I accidentally start a 10-page long review of science fiction authors.

P.S. Susan Calvin wins for best "Big Three" character. If you don't agree, read "Lenny" and "Feminine Intuition" by Asimov.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Quixotess » Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:05 am UTC

Peregrine wrote:Asimov led me to science fiction, and he is still my favourite, both as an author and a person (I insist people read his autobiography; I,Asimov). Heinlein's amazing as well, so a close second goes to him. I admittedly haven't read as much Clarke, so my opinion might be a bit skewed. Adams, Dick, Dickson, Del Rey, and Bester are also really high up there. I'm going to attempt to end my post here, before I accidentally start a 10-page long review of science fiction authors.

P.S. Susan Calvin wins for best "Big Three" character. If you don't agree, read "Lenny" and "Feminine Intuition" by Asimov.


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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Peregrine » Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:09 am UTC

The only people insulted by the story Feminine Intuition are the people who throw around the phrase "feminine intuition". Also, I realize I forgot Le Guin in my list of other really good science fiction writers.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Quixotess » Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:14 am UTC

Okay, it's not free online, but I did learn that Feminine Intuition is available at Amazon for $20.99. I don't know, I laughed.

I remember being kind of annoyed at Asimov for a lot of the things he did with women, but I don't imagine it would be at all different with Clarke or Heinlein.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby GonzoMcFonzo » Tue Jun 17, 2008 3:01 pm UTC

This is way too close to call. The first time I read anyhting by any of them was in 4th grade, and in the interviening decade they've significantly shaped my whole worldview. I'm not going to be able to pick just one. It's a tie between Asimov and Heinlein, with clarke a close third. I think Heinlein writes better adventure stuff, while Asimov writes much better mistery. Heinline seems to have a better ear for diolouge, while Asimove tends to write more beleavable charachters. I think the Robot/Empire/Foundationverse has a more epic feel to it, but the Future History/World as a Myth multiverse gave us Pantheistic Sophalism, one of my favorite concepts ever. Honestly it's just too close to call.

I remember being kind of annoyed at Asimov for a lot of the things he did with women, but I don't imagine it would be at all different with Clarke or Heinlein.
I can't really say for Clark, but if Asimov's treatment of women bothered you, you're really going to have to watch out for Heinlein. He wrote some... interesting female charachters (most of whom were based in large part on his wife)
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Nomic » Tue Jun 17, 2008 5:59 pm UTC

Haven't actually read Heinlein. Hard to decide between the other two. Both Clarke and Asimov are brilliant writers and both had ideas far in advance of the time they wrote. I think Asimov wins by a small margin tho, mainly because I've read more of his stories, and some of my all time fauvorites are by him.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Mr. Beck » Tue Jun 17, 2008 6:27 pm UTC

GonzoMcFonzo wrote:
I remember being kind of annoyed at Asimov for a lot of the things he did with women, but I don't imagine it would be at all different with Clarke or Heinlein.
I can't really say for Clark, but if Asimov's treatment of women bothered you, you're really going to have to watch out for Heinlein. He wrote some... interesting female charachters (most of whom were based in large part on his wife)

Calrke's treatment of women is actually quite fair. I have read several books of his with strong female protagonists.

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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby protocoach » Tue Jun 17, 2008 9:53 pm UTC

I can not stand Heinlein. His characters are annoying, the plots are simplistic, and I disliked getting slapped around with a libertarian stick every ten pages. It's slightly more bearable than reading Rand, but that's not saying much; there are ingredient lists that are more enjoyable than Rand's work.

I chose Asimov. I liked Clark as well, but Asimov's books were the ones that set off the sci-fi spark for me when I was younger.
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Re: [Poll] Who is your favourite of the 'Big Three'?

Postby Quixotess » Tue Jun 17, 2008 9:57 pm UTC

GonzoMcFonzo wrote:
I remember being kind of annoyed at Asimov for a lot of the things he did with women, but I don't imagine it would be at all different with Clarke or Heinlein.
I can't really say for Clark, but if Asimov's treatment of women bothered you, you're really going to have to watch out for Heinlein. He wrote some... interesting female charachters (most of whom were based in large part on his wife)

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