"GHOSTBUSTERS ECTOMOBILE OWNER'S WORKSHOP MANUAL"
BY TROY BENJAMIN & MARC SUMERAK
Go under the hood of the Ghostbusters’ iconic car and discover the secrets of the team’s ghoul-trapping gadgets with this comprehensive users manual for Ecto-1 and the equipment it carries.
Discover the secrets of the Ghostbusters’ iconic specter-smashing automobile, Ecto-1, with this comprehensive owner’s workshop manual. Along with a detailed breakdown of Ecto-1’s capabilities and exclusive cutaway images that show the car’s souped-up engine and onboard ghost-tracking equipment, the book also focuses on the Ghostbusters’ portable tools of the trade, including proton packs, ghost traps, and PKE meters. The book also looks at various models of Ecto-1, including the Ecto-1A from Ghostbusters II and the version of Ecto-1 seen in 2016’s Ghostbusters: Answer the Call. Featuring commentary from familiar characters, including Ray Stantz, Peter Venkman, and Jillian Holtzmann, Ghostbusters: Ectomobile: Owner’s Workshop Manual is the ultimate guide to the Ghostbusters’ legendary vehicles and the ghost-catching equipment the cars haul from one job to the next.
EXCLUSIVE: Take a Nerdy Deep Dive Into the Ghostbusters' Ecto-1 and Proton Packs
Syfy Wire | September 13
Review Graveyard (Charles Parker):
Since the nineteen sixties Haynes Manuals have been produced, predominantly manuals for car owners, however they have branched out into more amusing, if no less detailed, genre manuals. Most recently they have released the Ghostbusters Ectomobile Owners Workshop Manual (2017. 143 pages).
I thought that this was an odd choice for a manual, after all the previous Star Trek, Star Warsand Captain Scarlet manuals had a lot of vehicles and equipment to choose from, Ghostbusters has pretty much one car. How wrong could I be?
The book covers all the films, including the most recent one, and does an excellent job of covering the various vehicles and equipment. The contents are equally divided between informative text, schematics and pictures, including many close-ups of various equipment parts.
There is also an added layer of ephemera which includes post-it notes from the characters as well as the occasional full-page essays by the in-film characters. It all makes for a nicely layered product. Apart for the lack of dimensional stats there is enough information in the book to have a stab at building your own Ecto1.
Each of the elements which made up the Ecto1 is examined in detail. I was surprised to discover that a lot of the equipment are actual instruments. I looked a couple up on-line and they really exist, or at least existed, given the age of the first film its probably quite difficult to get hold of original pieces. But this level of detail does add weight to the overall book.
The first fifty-nine pages are devoted to the first film, with changes made for the second filling up pages sixty to ninety-nine. Pages one hundred to one hundred and forty-three covers the most recent reboot.
So, if you ever needed to know the differences between the vehicles and equipment in insane detail then this is the book for you.
The Haynes Ghostbusters Ecto-1 Workshop Manual is super cool. It's both a fun read for fans as well as a valuable resource for Ghostbusters prop builders.
In addition to having info on the original Ecto-1, the Ghostbusters 2 Ecto-1A, and the reboot Ecto-1, the book also includes detailed specs for 20 Ghostbusting gadgets across the three movies.
I really liked how the book isn't supposed to be written by Ray Stanz, but it still feels like it is. The tone and grammar and word choices feel very much like they're coming out of his mouth. For that in-universe flair, some pages have sticky notes with comments and quips from members of both Ghostbusting teams (original recipe and lady-style).
On that note, this book treats the reboot Ghostbusters as characters in the same universe as the original team. It suggests they're a modern franchise carrying on the business founded in the '80s rather than a team existing in a universe completely separate from the original films. I wish the 2016 movie had gone that route. I would have loved for it to be a new story with new Ghostbusters with all the rich history of the original universe instead of a completely new "inventing what Ghostbusting is" story. But I digress.
The book did a fantastic job balancing in-universe with real-world facts. For each device and gadget mentioned there was a detailed Ghostbusters-world rundown of exactly what the thing does, and many of them also include details of what real-world devices were "repurposed by Dr. Spengler" to create them. For example, the entry on the PKE meter explains how it's used to detect ghosts, and also mentions exactly what kind of electric shoe polisher the prop is made of.
A great deal of effort and love clearly went into this book. It's definitely worth a look from any Ghostbusters fan, old or new.