Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Why the hell is Sci-Fi making such a come back?

Contributed by guest blogger of the week, Will Le Vasseur.

For me it’s really simple: It never left us. Science (fiction or otherwise) has become such a huge part of our lives that it’s no longer escapable. The 1” flat screen television that is now a internet browser and juicer was something that was the dream of Star Trek of long ago... Cell phones? The flip ones were modeled after the communicators from Star Trek TOS (The Original Series for you non-Trekkies). Medical advances: inserting nano-machines to help clean up scar tissue in joints, medicines that specifically target one cell and not another... Even the thing you’re using right now to read this blathering missive come from some science fiction inspired idea. If you dream it, we’ll eventually get to a point where we can make it.

But that doesn’t really answer the question, does it... What about this? Things like Fringe, Dr. Who, the “Treks”, the “Wars”, The Event, V (reboot), etc. are on TV now because in the semi-near future, they’re all possible. And much like the baby-boomers who are now crying, “Where the frack are my flying cars!?!?!?” the Gen X, Y, beyond-ers are looking to see what we ourselves are probably going to miss out on, but, “Damn wouldn’t it be cool if---?” It’s that little bit within us that always wants to push further and advance farther than we’ve gone before. Explorers crossed the Atlantic; we’re pushing to visit other planets.

And that’s where it comes from I think: that drive to move forward. That instinct within us to open that door even though we know that there’s an Alien on the other side waiting to thrust it’s secondary mouth through our forehead. Forward momentum. Now that we have fracking awesome cell phones (think the late 80’s early 90’s), what do we want to move forward with next? Implantation? “Oh hell no!” many of you are screaming... but who knows, maybe in the next two or three generations when the stalwarts have died off we think “call significant other” and then we’re talking... Pre-telepathy? Now that would be interesting.

Though, there’s also a second component to the story lines that we see presented: More of us within the characters. More of our humanity through their non-human eyes. Watch Dr. Who season 5 with Matt Smith and check out “The Hungry Earth” and “Cold Blood” (episodes 8/9), and you’ll see what I’m talking about. There’s only so much that we as humans can get from watching ourselves... but when we watch others “act human”, we cry “Brilliant!” or “Awww!” or “EEEEK!”. Check any viral video site and you’ll see what I’m talking about (remove the ball-crunching/face planting pain videos first please).

Am I full of IT? Maybe. Does some of this ring true for some? Sure! That’s why they keep coming back to it. At least, in my humble opinion.

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