Monday, November 30, 2015

Hitchhikers Guide To the Galaxy

Listening to several of the Hitchhikers Guide to Galaxy's radio episodes I absolutely fell in love with the series. It would accompany me late at night in the studio and keep me fully interested into whatever I was working on. The science fiction we had read prior to this week was serious and in depth with world building, where Hitchhikers has witty British humor and an adventure with two peasants of this universe. The Alien, Ford Perfect, named himself after what he thought was the most popular life form in the universe, the ford automobile, and his partner Arthur Dent. The story itself is so over detailed to the point were it should be annoying, but nevertheless I'm still listening to it. I want to know what happens next with Arthur and Ford. Its no surprise to me that the series was so popular when BBC first aired it in 1978. The story has incredible nonsensical detail and manages to make light of a very serious philosophical question: what is the meaning to life, everything, and the universe? Furthermore, there seems to be a cult following for the radio series as well as the books and movie similar to that of Rocky Horror Picture Show or Mars Attacks. 

I think this series is drastically different then anything we have read prior to this week because of the witty humor and the over detailed writing. The writing in this story is incredible, its so funny with how it describes the setting for Ford and Arthur when they change places. There is a narrator for this part where he will go into mass detail about how certain items or places function (which is usually humorous and absurd). 

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Literary Speculation

After reading a couple short stories this week Aquatic uncle was the most interesting to me, because of how it was written. I think the stories that were offered for this week were more written narrative then science fiction because they seemed more worried about the story then the context of the story. Most of the science fiction we were reading prior to this week was all about world building and high fantasy. I believe that this week threw all that out the window and just threw us into these worlds like we are supposed to know everything about it. The thing that is helpful at this time is that most people understand science fiction and don't need all the explanation, so most writers can just write and tell stories without the background information. It's like video games now a days, they don't add manuals to the game because people at this point understand video games and how they play. 

Anyways, Aquatic Uncle to say the least is really wild. The whole story is a traditional story about someone loving somebody who they aren't allowed to, but glorified with scientific characteristics. These kind of stories are a lot easier for me to read personally, because I have a hard time understanding all the worlds and clans and different social parties most science fiction stories talk about in their stories. Aquatic Uncle itself was a pretty boring story, the only reason I say that is because I feel like I have read this story so many times with a different context to it. That being said I think the way the science fiction side of the story is introduced. Its very weird and different, but the feeling is still the same. 

Diverse Position Science Fiction

This week has been drastically different than most of the science fiction weeks. I think at this point in the genre artists wanted to make the material more relatable. I watched the movie Attack the Block and read the short story Bloodchild. Okay, so the reason I think this week is really different is because of Attack the Block. This movie presents the aliens in Britain in a place similar to Compton. The setting, characters, time period, and characteristics are all so normal to us. We are presented a couple hoodlum boys that live in the ghetto in London and the best part about it is they aren't good kids. They are making trouble and robbing people, but when the movie starts we cheer for them. They want to conquer these Aliens and they all are working together to get through this alien invasion. It seems really odd to be cheering for these kids, but how the movie is made we want them to succeed. There is a scene were they boys show up at a drug dealers house and the main character Moses picks up some pot to sell for him. I think this scene really specifies who these kids are. 

Anyways, the time period seems very current and relevant, which is really different for science fiction. Most of the science fiction stories are set way in the future or in the past, but aren't on earth. we are usually traveling somewhere made up. So the reason I think this week is really special for science fiction is because the story doesn't need to be placed in the future or out off earth. Attack the Block is really proved this. 

The Future of Horror

After this semester we have reviewed lots of genre's within horror and fantasy. Seeing where the genres originated was really interesting because we got to see the progression of both genres. With horror, I feel the way it progresses from the gothic horror to mumblegore is insane. I think the genre is heading back to its roots. My favorite movie from that time period is Alien, I think the way the genre has been shaped is due to the cultural events that were happening during the time the movies were made. The reason I think the genre is going to be headed back to gothic horror is because what is going on in the world. I brought up Alien because when Alien was made there were a lot of comparisons to the Vietnam war. Gothic horror has lots of comparisons to this, gloomy, decaying setting, and supernatural figures. I think the way our culture is headed will be taking us back to these characteristics in horror films. I think there will be a flux in unbeatable horror films were there is no escaping, just like in Alien. 

Monday, November 9, 2015


1. There are some prominent symbols in this story, but the one that stands out to me the most is the idea that humans are used for function. As a male human that scares me, I can't imagine only being a surrogate for a alien. In this story we are used to give birth to this alien race and then we are thrown out after we serve our purpose. The alien implant their worm like babies into the male humans and it is a brutal experience. I think the author wanted us to think about our existence and compare it to the way humans are treated in his story. In the story humans are basically not allowed to be anything more than a function, we are supposed to life our whole life just to be used then thrown out.

2. I connected with this story because it scared me, the fear of being used my whole life then just to be brutally killed to further something else's existence is terrifying. The maggots like worms eating you alive to you can't breathe anymore is disgusting and the thought of having to do that without any consent is scary. As americans we are told we have rights and we are allowed to think on our own and make our own decisions. This story implants a slavery theme to it, were humans aren't allowed to think and their fate has already been decided by another life form that isn't any different than us.

3. This story could easily be turned into a comic or a graphic novel, because how the author writes is so vivid and easy to understand. He explains in detail what is happening in each scene and I think that it could be easily drawn and make it more interesting than the writing. Being able to see the males being eaten apart would be brutal and wouldn't require as many words to explain what is happening. I picture the comic to be red and black. When I was reading the story those were the only colors that I was seeing. Overall,  I think this story could easily be manipulated into a graphic story.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

High Fantasy

After reading Aye, And Gomorrah I was honestly so confused. The way high fantasy is being written at this time is very confusing. It’s basically like getting a new video game and their being no manual on how to play. The game company expects people to know how to play games and be able to adapt to them easily. The reason it was hard for me is because I’m not as interested in high fantasy writing. So the author just throwing us into this story and expecting us to understand the world that he has created. Being a short story, he builds the world around a conversation two people are having about the stereotypes this world has. I think the biggest problem I have with this genre is the world building the writers have to do to make it understandable and enjoyable. Most people want everything explained, because if it isn’t well written or all explained it takes away from the experience of immersing yourself in a totally different world. That’s why I think the short stories written for fantasy are confusing, because we don’t know all the variables that make this world. I think Lord of the Rings is a good example of Fantasy, even though it isn’t in space we are pushed to try and understand the universe that Tolkien created. He created different groups of races and as well created a whole language for his world. In the name of world building Tolkien is the king of it.

It seems most of these books are around the idea of someone leaving their home world and having friction, because they have to interact with others that usually aren’t like them. I think that this is a way to have two completely different worlds collide. Making the story building even more intense then just having one world representing the story. After reading a couple short stories I think that high fantasy is only for a certain group of people, because of the intense reading it has.

Space Opera

Space operas are in a lot of ways were the beginning to high fantasy and the way we know fantasy stories. First I wanted to talk about Forbidden Planet, which was directed by Fred Wilcox.  This movie is about a group of officers who have been traveling the galaxy to investigate a planet that they lost connection with. They were sent to see if there were any survivors. This movie was hard to watch, because of the acting. The setting and story made it seem like it would be an intense space movie. As the movie continues it slowly becomes a drama in space. I think the only reason it’s considered a sci-fi movie is because of the context of the story. Only because the setting is in space and there are weird noises and robots that can do highly scientific things. I think Forbidden Planet was a definite good start to the sci-fi genre, but it can’t even compare to Star Wars and what that story did for the genre.

I’m not entirely sure where to start with star wars, simply because the magnitude of the universe that George Lucas has created. It is incredible how simple Star Wars is when you think about the story. It’s a western movie that is set in high fantasy. Luke sky walker is the underdog whose fate is to fight the most infamous guy in the universe, Darth Vader. The original three movies are what make it a western. We spend three movies with Luke finding out who Darth Vader is and why he must defeat him. All western movies have this, we are presented with a problem that must be resolved and the main protagonist must overcome a big fear of theirs to defeat the problem. Most endings of westerns are really epic, because we see the progression of the protagonist and we root for them to defeat the big problem they are facing.