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The Crying Game

After 14 years, a movie and 17 seasons Stargate has left our screens forever- falling ratings dooming it's latest incarnation, Stargate: Universe, just as the series was finding it's feet. But what would have happned had the series continued? (contains spoilers for show you probably didn't watch)
posted by Artw on May 18, 2011 - 181 comments

"What I wanted was to create a prophet"

"I wanted to do a movie that would give the people that took LSD at that time the hallucinations that you get with that drug, but without hallucinating. I did not want LSD to be taken, I wanted to fabricate the drug's effect." - Alejandro Jodorowsky's Dune (previously) is to be the subject of a new documentary.
posted by Artw on May 16, 2011 - 32 comments

skiffy

Today's Guardian Review is a science fiction special [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on May 14, 2011 - 89 comments

Over 2.7 million nations served.

NationStates is a free political simulation game founded by author Max Barry back in 2002 (previously). Loosely based on his dystopian corporate thriller Jennifer Government, the game starts by asking players to provide some national trappings and answer a few civics questions, then generates a virtual country with a matching political outlook. Periodic policy decisions like mining rights and compulsory voting allow players to further modify their country along axes of social, political, and economic freedom, arriving at one of twenty-seven colorful government types like Tyranny By Majority or Scandinavian Liberal Paradise. There's also a healthy roleplaying community -- players can discuss current events in the General forum, practice wargaming in International Incidents, form cooperative Regions to debate internal affairs (many of which form their own communities), and elect Delegates to send to the World Assembly (so renamed after an amusing cease-and-desist from the real-world U.N.). Their collective history is thoroughly recorded in the 35,000-article NSWiki, which provides a detailed legislative record, gameplay guide, and profiles on many of the 90,000 active nations, 8,000 player regions, and countless characters that currently make up the game world.
posted by Rhaomi on May 9, 2011 - 62 comments

Meet "Meet The Hollowheads"

The Edgewise Guide To Filmmaking. Screenwriter Lisa Morton kept a diary while making the very, very strange 1989 movie Meet The Hollowheads (trailer). The low-budget sci-fi/horror/social comment/sitcom takes place in a dystopian underground suburb whose entire infrastructure, operated by monopolist corporation United Umblicial, consists of flexible tubes which carry waste, energy, and slimy and sometimes still living comestibles. The movie, the one and only directorial effort of horror FX and make-up man Tom Burman, inspires confusion and dismay in most viewers. Hollowheads stars John Glover and features a 14-year-old Juliette Lewis, her big brother Lightfield, a musical instrument made out of a live chicken, an eyeball attached to a large intestine that lives in a glass tank, and an uncredited Bobcat Goldthwait as a lascivious cop, whose few lines include "When will children learn to just say no to butt polish?"
posted by escabeche on May 1, 2011 - 52 comments

An Extended Finnish Saturday Matinee

Finnish YouTube user Ishexan has uploaded seven English subtitled movies in parts: Broken Blossoms (1919), Aelita (1924), The Gipsy Charmer (1929), The Tragedy of Elina (1938), The Activists (1939), The Wooden Pauper's Bride (1944), and Sampo (1959), which is based on the epic poem The Kalevala. The films are mostly Finnish, though Aelita is a silent Russian sci-fi film, and Sampo was a joint Finnish and Soviet production. More film clips inside (mostly Finnish documentaries and "dorky musical numbers"). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 30, 2011 - 12 comments

RIP Joanna Russ

After suffering a series of strokes earlier this week, feminist science fiction author and essayist Joanna Russ has died. Russ's best known work is probably her novel The Female Man; this and her other works were often misunderstood and dismissed by the male-dominated science fiction field of the 70s. Despite this, her short story "When It Changed" (which was included in Harlan Ellison's Again Dangerous Visions) won a Hugo award in 1973, and her novella, "Souls," won a Nebula award in 1983. In retrospect, of course, hers is one of the names that will be remembered from that era of imaginative writing.
posted by aught on Apr 29, 2011 - 87 comments

Renovation

Blogging the Hugos: Decline (part 1, part 2, part 3), is a series of blog posts covering some dystopian trends in recent Hugo nominees and itself winner of the of the BSFA award for non fiction. Meanwhile the 2011 Hugo finalists have been announced, with Mefi favorites featuring strongly: In Best Novella The Lifecycle of Software Objects by Ted Chiang (previously), In Best Short Story The Things by Peter Watts (previously). Doctor who features heavily under Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form (too many posts to mention), but has strong competition from Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury.
posted by Artw on Apr 24, 2011 - 27 comments

The Ballad of Halo Jones

Alan Moore and Ian Gibson's epic story The Ballad of Halo Jones concluded 25 years ago today (bar the odd strange one page appearance hinting at why it did not return). Despite being unpopular with readers at first due to it's female protagonist and relative lack of action it is now rightly regarded as one of 2000ads classic stories. However despite Quality Comics reprinting a color monthly version (which was anything but quality) it has remained a rarity in the US, until now. But how would the other 6 chapters of the planned 9 part chapter have gone? Moore revealed how it would have ended in a recent interview.
posted by Artw on Apr 19, 2011 - 20 comments

Just Write It!

Fans of George RR Martin's "The Song of Ice and Fire" series are eagerly awaiting "A Dance With Dragons", the next book. This anticipation has led to hostility from some fans as to Martin's work ethic and the manner in which he spends his personal time.
posted by reenum on Apr 14, 2011 - 206 comments

No matter how technologically advanced your future society might be, its sociology and economics are basically those of the seventeenth century

How To Write A Generic SF Novel
posted by Artw on Apr 5, 2011 - 166 comments

From Beyond

Following the success of The Haunter of The Dark, the HP Lovecraft Literary Podcasts presents two new readings, From Beyond and The Picture in The House, by Andrew Leman and Bruce Green. Both recordings are available "In 3D". Alternatively if you like your Lovecraft with both pictures AND sound, the HP Lovecraft Historical Society version of The Whisperer in Darkness is complete and being shown at worldwide film festivals - it's a talkie! (The HPLHS are now also offering a rather handsome "official membership" pack.) Want something more interactive? Cthulhu Dark offers a complete Lovecraftian tabletop RPG system that fits on two sides of a sheet of paper. Please note: "If you fight any creature you meet, you will die. Thus, in these core rules, there are no combat rules or health levels. Instead, roll to hide or escape."
posted by Artw on Mar 29, 2011 - 21 comments

Slow Action

Slow Action is a post-apocalyptic science fiction film that brings together a series of four 16mm works which exist somewhere between documentary, ethnographic study and fiction. [Via]
posted by homunculus on Mar 19, 2011 - 4 comments

You know what it is to keep a promise to the dead.

Aboriginal Science Fiction was started in 1987 to rethink the look and feel of SF magazines; Charles Ryan published it in full sized magazine format, on glossy paper, with four-color interior illustrations and it sold well. Aboriginal kept up a full schedule through 1991, when a personal financial crisis nearly shut him down. He kept putting out the occasional issue until 2001, but the irregularity made it hard to find.

Aboriginal courted new writers, one of whom was Robert A. Metzger, an electrical engineer and laser specialist who wrote quirky, fun hard SF stories. After Aboriginal mostly folded and he got shafted on his first book deal, he mostly walked away from writing. He's drifted back in a bit since 2001, but fortunately at some point along the way he decided to put some of his boomerang era pieces online. And that's how it's possible for you to read one of the most haunting, breathtaking short stories I've ever read:

In the Shadow of Bones
posted by localroger on Mar 17, 2011 - 17 comments

Beware of Imitations

Omni magazine visits the set of THE THING. (previously)
posted by Artw on Mar 10, 2011 - 58 comments

The Map Of Science Fiction

The History Of Science Fiction: a submission for the 7th iteration of the Places & Spaces: Mapping Science Exhibit.
posted by ninebelow on Mar 9, 2011 - 26 comments

Live Long And Prosper

Star Trek Convention NYC 1973 - Interviews with the fans, some of the makers of the show and Isaac Asimov (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Mar 7, 2011 - 49 comments

Recording the Star Wars Saga

Recording the Star Wars Saga (1 MB PDF) [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Mar 5, 2011 - 27 comments

Hip hop EP inspired by film Moon

Selene is a hip hop EP inspired by Duncan Jones' fine science fiction film Moon. The beats, which heavily sample Clint Mansell's score for the movie, were created by Max Tannone, best known for mashup album Jaydiohead, Doublecheck Your Head and Mos Dub/Dub Kweli. The MC is Brooklyn rapper Richard Rich.
posted by Kattullus on Feb 23, 2011 - 21 comments

2010 Locus Recommended Reading

Locus, the Magazine of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Field, is the paper of record in the science fiction community. Every year the editors and reviewers at Locus publish a recommended reading list which includes novels, YA novels, first novels, anthologies and collections, related non-fiction, art books, and three types of shorter work (novellas, novelettes, and short stories). If you are at all interested in the current state of the SF&F genre you can't do better than Locus' yearly effort. The list for 2010 appears in the February issue. [more inside]
posted by Justinian on Feb 18, 2011 - 25 comments

Thus did Man become the Architect of his own demise...

"Welcome to the Zion Archive. You have selected Historical File #12-1: The Second Renaissance." So begins the short film of the same name by Mahiro Maeda [Flash: 1 2 - QuickTime: 1 2] -- a devastating yet beautiful work of animation. Originally produced to explain the backstory behind the Matrix trilogy, Maeda's project ended up telling a story far darker and more affecting than any blockbuster. Using a blend of faux documentary footage and visual metaphor, his serene Instructor relates in biblical tones the saga of Man and Machine, how age-old cruelty and hatred birthed a horrifying, apocalyptic struggle that consumed the world. Packed with striking imagery and historical allusions galore, this dark allegory easily transcends the films it was made for. But while "The Second Renaissance" is arguably the best work to come from the Matrix franchise, it's hardly alone -- it's just one of the projects made for The Animatrix, a collection of nine superb anime films in a wide variety of styles designed to explore the universe and broaden its scope beyond the usual sci-fi action of the movies. Click inside for a guide to these films with links to where they can be watched online, along with a look at The Matrix Comics, a free series of comics, art, and short fiction created for the same purpose by some of the best talent in the business. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Feb 14, 2011 - 54 comments

Starship Schematics Database

Starship Schematics Database: dedicated to the sole purpose of archiving every single starship design ever conceived in the Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Babylon 5, and Space Battleship Yamato (A.K.A. Star Blazers in the USA) Universes, both official and unofficial, interesting and mediocre.
posted by Joe Beese on Feb 12, 2011 - 35 comments

The Eternal Champion

When Hari Kunzru met Michael Moorcock
posted by Artw on Feb 5, 2011 - 25 comments

We’re Tearing the Heart Out of Saturday Night!

"Let's do those drive-in totals. We have: Nineteen dead bodies (plus fragments). Ten breasts (shame on you, TNT censors). Two zombie breasts. One-hundred twenty-five zombies. Mummy dogs. One-half zombie dog. Ten gallons blood. Brain-eating. Gratuitous embalming. Zombie fu. Nekkid punk-rocker fondue. Gratuitous midget zombie. Torso S&M. One motor vehicle chase (totalled by zombies). Pool cue fu. No aardvarking. Heads roll. Brains roll. Arms roll. Hands roll. Joe Bob says, Check It Out." Only on MonsterVision. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Feb 3, 2011 - 31 comments

Transition

Iain Banks interviewed by the Open University (45min). Compare and contrast with Iain Banks interviewed on STV (25min) back in 1989. [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Feb 1, 2011 - 44 comments

What science fiction thinks of science

Six or seven stances science fiction movies take towards science. From John Holbo at Crooked Timber. [more inside]
posted by escabeche on Jan 26, 2011 - 50 comments

No more Alien prequel

Alien prequel morphs into Prometheus [warning: annoying interstitial ad], the new Ridley Scott sci-fi film. Via the awesome Strange Shapes Alien series blog.
posted by Bangaioh on Jan 19, 2011 - 47 comments

I've Seen the Lizard Man.

reMIND is a webcomic that updates on Mondays.
posted by cthuljew on Jan 19, 2011 - 9 comments

"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear. And the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown."

Lovecraft: Fear of the Unknown - A 90 minute documentary on HP Lovecraft with contributions by Neil Gaiman, John Carpenter and Guillermo Del Toro.
posted by Artw on Jan 15, 2011 - 26 comments

The Heart of Darkness

Joseph Conrad's forgotten novel about invaders from the Fourth Dimension.
posted by Artw on Jan 14, 2011 - 18 comments

His name is a +2 Killing Word

The Dune RPG that never was.
posted by Artw on Jan 11, 2011 - 70 comments

Writemare at 20,000 feet

Richard Matheson—Storyteller - To mark the publication of a book of tribute stories writer and editor Richard Bradley has been blogging about the author's 60 year writing career- covering I Am Legend, Duel, and The Incredible Shrinking Man, not to mention Somewhere in Time (full index here). Of course Matheson is probably most famous for his contributions to the Twilight Zone, being one of it's three major writers and scripting Nightmare at 20,000 feet. Twice.
posted by Artw on Jan 4, 2011 - 25 comments

Never-before encountered aliens that just happen to speak English and laser guns.

The NASA list of "silliest" science fiction films outlines some complete horseshit offerings but is sci-fi meant to be realistic? Fans of hard sci-fi might argue it is the core of that place where dreaming and science combine, but shouldn't the dreaming part allow an amount of creative freedom in the hopes of getting at some larger truth? Some would say there is a point where you've gone too far. But what if our current impossible dream later becomes plausible, possible or reality?
posted by Raunchy 60s Humour on Jan 4, 2011 - 100 comments

He can't be bargained with. He can't be reasoned with. He doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear.

Why the Entire World Doesn't Steal from Harlan Ellison
posted by Artw on Jan 2, 2011 - 124 comments

This isn't your grandfather's science fiction

Ted Chiang is perhaps the finest author in contemporary science fiction -- and the most rarefied. A technical writer by trade and a graduate of the distinguished Clarion Writers Workshop, Chiang has published only twelve short stories in the last twenty years, one dozen masterpieces of the genre whose insightful, precise, often poetic language confronts fundamental ideas -- intelligence, consciousness, the nature of God -- and thrusts them into a dazzling new light. Click inside for a complete listing of Chiang's work, with links to online reprints or audio recordings where available, as well as a collection of one-on-one interviews, links to his nonfiction essays, and a few other related sites and articles. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 27, 2010 - 116 comments

Fritz Leiber centenary

Fritz Leiber Jr. was born 100 years ago today. An actor (and son of an actor) and writer, he is best known for his characters Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser (old school website). Project Gutenberg has some stories. Previously on Metafilter. [more inside]
posted by maurice on Dec 24, 2010 - 19 comments

Arrakis... Dune... Desert Planet...

Bill Sienkiewicz's David Lynch's Frank Herbert's DUNE.
posted by Artw on Dec 23, 2010 - 44 comments

All these worlds are yours...

An open letter to all fans of Science Fiction from Tom Hunter, Director of the Arthur C. Clarke Award - The Arthur C. Clarke Award, the yearly award for best Science Fiction novel published in the UK, could be in trouble.
posted by Artw on Dec 16, 2010 - 26 comments

At least they actually made Firefly

13 awesome and awful pilots for sci-fi series we never got to see.
posted by cthuljew on Dec 14, 2010 - 63 comments

We are already dead. We are Robot Jox!

Robot vs Robot, Human vs Alien, '90 vs '89, Robot Jox vs Arena... [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Dec 9, 2010 - 20 comments

Dirty Rotten Muties

Murderbullets, 102 pages of power armour, guns, mega-scale rapidly mutating biological horror, cancer sticks, tanks and general comics mahem by James Stokoe.
posted by Artw on Dec 2, 2010 - 17 comments

The Ship of Foolishness

"The project was the brainchild of three good friends of mine. One was an astronaut, one was a communications genius who used to work with Walter Cronkite and the third was a highly respected scientist, and the one thing I won’t tell you about them is their names. You see, the three of them collectively cooked up one of the very best ideas I have ever heard, and they overcame all obstacles to make it come to pass. But then they messed up one tiny, inconsequential little detail. That turned the whole enterprise into a catastrophic confusion which gave great pleasure to some but cost others, including one of its principle intended beneficiaries of the idea, the Holland America cruise ship line, a ton of money." - Frederik Pohl [previously] [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Nov 30, 2010 - 47 comments

Imagine Later

The Sci Fi/SyFy rebrand (previously) - was it a success? Yes and No.
posted by Artw on Nov 30, 2010 - 74 comments

Heroes, Rogues, and Jezebels

Pulp Fiction is an exhibition of (mostly) Australian pulp novel and magazine covers from the University of Otago Special Collections Library. (NSFW)
posted by Horace Rumpole on Nov 23, 2010 - 15 comments

¡No Pasaran, Mother Fuckers!

Scottish SF author Hal Duncan tells you It Gets Better. [Work Warning: carpet f-bombing] He has been blogging for a while about SF and social issues, including homophobia and cultural appropriation. A couple of short pieces and some audio files are available in the sidebar on the left of the blog, if you are inclined to check out his writing. If that's too much blog, here is an interview. [It Gets Better previously]
posted by GenjiandProust on Nov 20, 2010 - 14 comments

Uncertain Futures

Uncertain Futures: Americans and Science Fiction in the Early Cold War Era [via Futurismic]
posted by brundlefly on Nov 15, 2010 - 4 comments

The Acrylic Age of Science Fiction

MANCHU Starships - wonderful old school SF paintings by French illustartor Philippe Bouchet.
posted by Artw on Nov 14, 2010 - 33 comments

A 1963 blue police box

Meanwhile in the TARDIS - two bonus ‘mini-episodes’ from the fifth season of doctor who. Can't wait to see the next season? If you're overseas it may get to you a bit quicker, as the BBCs iPlayer goes international. Bonus link: Amy Pond by way of Alphonse Mucha, by Bill Mudron.
posted by Artw on Nov 10, 2010 - 61 comments

Newly weird

Jeff Vandermeer discusses Amazons top 10 SF/Fantasy books of the year, which he selected in consultation with Amazon editors : Part 1, Part 2.
posted by Artw on Nov 4, 2010 - 28 comments

Touched by an Angel

"We appreciate all the support that fans have shown for 'Caprica' and are very proud of the producers, cast, writers and the rest of the amazing team that has been committed to this fine series. Unfortunately, despite its obvious quality, 'Caprica' has not been able to build the audience necessary to justify a second season." - The Battlestar Galactica prequel series Caprica has been cancelled, and it's final episodes consigned to 2011. As ever there is debate as to what went wrong, though it looks like one complaint, the shows relative lack of action, will be addressed by the next spin-off: Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome, set during the war years of a young William Adama.
posted by Artw on Oct 28, 2010 - 125 comments

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