YMMV: The Big One

  • Deliberate Values Dissonance: The Big One reflects the values and perceptions of the 1930s and 1940s, not those of the 21st century. This particularly comes out in the treatment of strategic bombing. Back then, strategic bombing was seen as a humane alternative to the horror of trench warfare on the western front. It was only during and after the war that the reality of strategic bombing campaigns became apparent and opposition to the concept grew. Likewise, when atomic bombs were first conceived and used, they were seen as just being very powerful bombs and nobody really thought that much about the implications of their use other than the fact they made bombing much more effective. Today, our attitudes about strategic bombing and using nuclear weapons are very different. This fundamental difference in attitudes between 'Then" and "now" seems to have escaped some critics.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The author doesn't scrimp on the description of a nuclear attack's aftermath, nor on lesser horrors like what napalm and conventional explosions do to people.
    • The description of biowarfare (in the to-be-published sequel High Frontier) is equally horrifying.
    • The fate of the Z-24 in Winter Warriors. The destroyer was making her first cruise in the Atlantic, she dug in the bow-and broke apart due bad design. Admiral Lindemann, who had objected multiple times to the precise bit of design that caused the failure, was looking at her when it happened, and was horrified.