Tag Archives: Zombies

Science Fiction and Religion – The Apocalypse

Is there just an apocalypse waiting?

From Avengers #3 by Jonathan Hickman.

I love Hickman’s Avengers. I’ve written about that fact before, and especially one of the things I love about his Marvel work – and his other comics – is how he works with both science and mythology. In Avengers, especially, he works on larger, over-arching mythology for the whole Marvel Universe. Its origins… and its ending.

That ending was last summer’s big crossover event, Secret Wars. I reviewed that recently. But it was a lot of time and comics leading into it, not just one crossover and everything is over. The apocalypse did not happen suddenly, although it may have felt that way if you were reading other titles… or just reading about the whole thing in the press about it.

No, in reading the whole thing, the buildup and then the collapse, I got to thinking of two things. One is the obvious, I suppose: other apocalyptic literature. Religious especially, the sort that seeps out into shows like Supernatural or Buffy the Vampire Slayer. We were reading a lot of the book of Daniel recently at church, and it’s also just chock full of apocalyptic dreams and visions. So the end of the world: symbolism, signs, and things that are either super literal or completely metaphorical…

The second thing I was thinking of, however, was the Final Fantasy XIII series, wherein the world ends between Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Lightning Returns. In particular, at the end of XIII-2, time itself ends, and the power of death along with it… but as Mr. Fantastic might say, everything dies, and ever so slowly that world does too.

Taken all together, you get what I considered as the alternate title to this blog post: how to end the universe.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Science Fiction Today – The World of Monsters

It’s probably playing Fallout 4, but I’ve been thinking about how many visions of the future, and fantasy stories for that matter, are full of monsters. Monsters in the wild, monsters in space, monsters we become.

Maybe the classic is the Final Fantasy series, with people living in their defended settlements, or just towns, and the countryside, forests, oceans, and everywhere else crawling with monsters. It’s a fact of life.

My first Final Fantasy game was VIII, which is particularly science fictiony. In it, the monsters amass on the moon and actually are brought over spilling into the world in an extreme way. But even before that, you have characters working as monster hunters, protection mercenary forces, and standing armies. All for fighting monsters.

In other stories, you see things like aliens, zombies, and even mutated humans. Heck, we just finished Jessica Jones the other day… Kilgrave is a monster!

But some of my thought is… why? Why do we so expect monsters in the future? Monster aliens, from Ender’s Game  to Doom. Conflicted misunderstood aliens to evil demonspawn. And transformations from mutants to zombies. Monsters in the environment from ones we might expect like wolves, to dragons and more. And that’s before you think of all the Lovecraftian stuff out there…

Is it that monsters make sense to us, that they’re an obvious evil? That they can avoid moral relativism? And then, if you want to make it a complicated story, you just add some moral relativism back in? Black and white, gray, where do monsters fall?

They can also represent our fear of the unknown, our fear of ourselves, our fear of the future. But there are oh, so many of them, when you start thinking of it. Are we that afraid?

Like I said, new way of looking at things. I ran into Super Mutants in Fallout 4, and it got me thinking. That’s after the giant mosquitos, giant scorpions, giant crabs…

Why monsters? What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!

You Should Watch This Video

If you’ve been traveling recently, or will be traveling soon over the holidays, or generally take vacations, you should watch this video. It was our mantra that kept us going on vacation. Thank you, Rhett & Link.

Science Fiction Today – 5 Ways the World Could End

It’s been a bit since we did a Science Fiction Today post… so here’s a fun one. How about the end of the world?

Armageddon, the Apocalypse, Ragnarok, the Eschaton… these names and more could be thrown at it. I feel like I have grown up in an era when we’ve half expected the end – at the year 2000, in 2012, any number of times around and between. When we’re not expecting it for real, we seem to be thinking about it in fiction – in science fiction, in horror. 

Maybe it’s the EMP Museum that got me thinking about it. They talked about how the current problems of the world tend to bleed into what happens in our horror stories – like the original Godzilla in the advent of the Atomic Age. So what are some of the things we’re worried about right now? Here’s my list of 5 ways the world could end!

Continue reading

LitFlix: Warm Bodies

Screenshot from Warm BodiesSo, this past Friday was the opening night of Warm Bodies, our first LitFlix of 2013. Initially the previews leading up to the release date made me think that they had removed some potentially crucial pieces from the book. I still saw how they could have pulled it off in the movie and was interested to see how they did it. Before I saw the movie I read the spoiler-heavy io9 review (http://io9.com/5980780/warm-bodies-is-something-way-better-than-just-romeo-and-juliet-and-zombies) that made me realize that the movie was probably going to be more like the book than I initially thought.

Having now read the book AND watched the movie, I can say they did a pretty good job of sticking to the source material, while still making it understandable in a different medium. There are still quite a few things that were changed in the movie, but I appreciate and can understand why these changes were made. (SPOILERS for both the book and movie Warm Bodies after the jump.) Continue reading