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We've finished our news, homo sapiens have outgrown their use, all the strangers came today, and it looks as though they're here to stay

"None of us are gods, evil, good, or any other kind of god. We are mortal. If I am cut, I bleed. If you are cut, you bleed. We are all flesh and blood. We are born. We live. We die. The only thing that makes us different is that we are a new kind of human being , One day everyone in the world will be like us. We are Tomorrow People, Hsui Tai, and you are one of us!" [more inside]
posted by Mezentian on Jul 6, 2012 - 32 comments

STAR WOLF, or, he tried to kill me with a forklift!

スターウルフ, "Star Wolf," was a half-hour sci-fi TV show produced and aired in Japan in 1978. (TV Tropes page -- addiction warning) It had somewhat cheesy special effects, understandable being a TV series made just one year after Star Wars, but it made up for it with style, energy, and ACTION PACKED MUSIC.

American viewers will know it best as the show ripped apart and reassembled into two Fugitive Alien movies by Sandy Frank Productions, then shown on two memorable episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000. (Episodes on YouTube: Fugitive Alien, its sequel.) Although the Japanese show got at least two seasons (the second under the title Space Hero Star Wolf), only the first four episodes appear to exist on the internet. Here they are: One - Two - Three - Four. (There are no subtitles, but you should be able to figure out what is going on if you've seen the MST episode.) [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jun 27, 2012 - 26 comments

Back to the Future

There were 78 episodes of the anthology Science Fiction Theatre aired on TV from 1955 to 1957. The show's plots were much more heavily-weighted to science than others of the time, although some of the premises appear very far-fetched. Many of the episodes are available on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Kirth Gerson on Jun 25, 2012 - 9 comments

My God, it's full of squares.

Minimalist Lego reconstructions of classic moments from sci-fi cinema.
posted by gauche on Jun 25, 2012 - 27 comments

What are a few galaxies between friends?

In November 1966, Isaac Asimov wrote an article for TV Guide lamenting the shaky science of Star Trek. Roddenberry replied, arguing that simply knowing about science, and writing sci-fi novels, was not sufficient qualification to criticize television sci-fi. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest on Jun 25, 2012 - 342 comments

Belated Happy Birthday, Murray Leinster

Murray Leinster wrote more than fifteen hundred works of speculative fiction. Technovelgy notes the science fiction tropes and devices that he invented, as well as other writers. Chee!
posted by winna on Jun 22, 2012 - 18 comments

This post is just in time for the annual spaghetti harvest.

In the late 1970s the UK's Anglia Television ran a respected weekly documentary series: Science Report. But when the show was cancelled in 1977, the producers decided to channel Orson Welles in their final episode. The result was Alternative 3. Over the course of the hour, the audience would learn that a Science Report investigation into the UK "brain drain" had uncovered shocking revelations: man-made pollution had resulted in catastrophic climate change, the Earth would soon be rendered uninhabitable, and a secret American / Soviet joint plan was in place to establish colonies on the Moon and Mars. The show ended with footage of a US/Soviet Mars landing from May 22, 1962. After Alternative 3 aired, thousands of panicked viewers phoned the production company and demanded to know how long they had left to change planets. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 20, 2012 - 22 comments

It's a test designed to provoke an emotional response.

Blade Runner: Aquarelle Edition
posted by OverlappingElvis on Jun 18, 2012 - 35 comments

The handsome man who was the Alien

Racialicious Crush Of The Week: Bolaji Badejo, aka the Alien.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jun 17, 2012 - 34 comments

Yeah, I'm pro-cat-saving, too.

Alex Pappademas and Sean Witzke over at Grantland have a long, detailed, super geeky film-nerd discussion of the Alien franchise. "It's important to note here that this is a nuke-it-from-space kind of conversation in which just about every aspect of the original "Alien Quadrilogy" is spoiled, as are some fairly crucial plot points from Prometheus. The Alien vs. Predator movies are neither spoiled nor discussed, because that would mean acknowledging their existence. Some people will undoubtedly view this as curatorial negligence on our part, but we welcome their scorn. "
posted by The Whelk on Jun 14, 2012 - 109 comments

No more tunes and numbers

Ray Bradbury has passed away.
posted by mightygodking on Jun 6, 2012 - 470 comments

If More Gyms Had Sword Fighting Classes....

"I'm in a nondescript warehouse in Seattle, to which I've traveled so that award-winning science fiction novelists can demonstrate how they could cut me in half if they felt like it." i09 Talks to Neal Stephenson about working on the multi-author IP-experiment *thing* The Mongoliad and sword fighting as a heart-healthy hobby.
posted by The Whelk on Jun 3, 2012 - 29 comments

20 short films, each made in 48 hours for Sci-Fi-London 2012

Sci-Fi-London put on another 48 hour film challenge this year, challenging film teams to make a short based around a given title, a snippet of dialogue, a short list of props, and an optional "scientific" theme. After two days in April, over 380 shorts had been made, and the winners have now been announced and and their short films posted on Sci-Fi-London's Vimeo account. 17 more shorts below the break. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on May 23, 2012 - 7 comments

Where Do We Go From Here?

SF author and Mefi's Own Charles Stross talks about the future of "big idea" Science Fiction: If SF's core message (to the extent that it ever had one) is obsolete, what do we do next?
posted by The Whelk on May 23, 2012 - 71 comments

But it has some nudes/ So if that does it for you

The art house review/criticism series Brows Held High decided to tackle Nicolas Roeg/David Bowie's 1976 The Man Who Fell To Earth by reviewing it as a karaoke medley of Bowie's greatest hits.
posted by The Whelk on May 21, 2012 - 12 comments

"The beauty of [science fiction] is—the whole point of it is—that humans are the same."

Each morning at 9am for the next two weeks, (Mefi's Own) scifi and fantasy author John Scalzi will be chatting with musician Jonathan Coulton about one of his science fiction songs -- a different song each morning, -- in a daily podcast over at Tor.com called Journey to Planet JoCo. Series index. On May 29th, they'll be premiering a brand new, previously unheard Coulton song.
posted by zarq on May 17, 2012 - 3 comments

The 3 African Samurai

Heavily influenced by samurai films from film makers such as Akira Kurosawa, French/Burkinabe filmmaker Cédric Ido produced a short award winning film, Hasaki Ya Suda (The Three Black Samurai) set in the future. Its synopsis reads: It is 2100. In the world engulfed in chaos and war whose residents are consumed by terrible hunger, the last fertile land became the subject of fierce battles. Three warriors: noble Wurubenba (Jacky Ido), Shandaru (Cedric Ido), who wants to avenge his father’s death, and Kapkaru (Min Man Ma) craving for power, will face one another in a fight for life and death. Watch the full 25-minute Hasaki Ya Suda short film (available only with French subtitles at the moment) or the 1 minute teaser. Interview with Cedric in English.
posted by infini on Apr 23, 2012 - 7 comments

Tribes: Ascend: free-to-play fps with a twist

Tribes: Ascend is a class-based sci-fi first-person shooter, and the successor to the much-loved Tribes series of games. What makes it unique is that there are no hitscan weapons, and players are able to jetpack, and frictionlessly glide (ski) over terrain. It is free to download for Windows as of April 12th, and so far the reception has been overwhelmingly positive.
posted by paradoxflow on Apr 14, 2012 - 43 comments

"To find out more, take a voyage down to your public library. It's all in books!"

Before Quantum Leap, there was a another scifi tv show where two time traveling Voyagers tried to put right what once went wrong….. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 4, 2012 - 37 comments

“Digitize Her!”

Earth, 2147. The legacy of the Metal Wars, where man fought machines—and machines won. Bio-Dreads — monstrous creations that hunt down human survivors... and digitize them!
In 1987, before he created Babylon 5, J. Michael Straczynski was a writer for Captain Power and the Soldiers of the Future, a live-action sci-fi show for kids. 24 episodes were produced. Straczynski wrote or co-wrote 14 of them, including multi-episode plot arcs. A line of interactive toys brought the battle into kids’ living rooms, and Captain Power was also one of the very first shows on television to feature computer animation in every episode. But in an attempt to appeal to both children and the adults who watched with them, the campy show included some concepts and scenes critics deemed too violent for children and lasted only a single season in syndication. The full run of the show has now been uploaded to Youtube. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 1, 2012 - 28 comments

Solve for Professor X

Pop Culture Math: Artist Matt Cowan breaks down pop-culture icons into basic formulas. [more inside]
posted by quin on Mar 22, 2012 - 11 comments

The Strange Art of Picking a TV Title

How TV show titles are picked, aka why "Friends" wasn't named "Across The Hall".
posted by reenum on Mar 19, 2012 - 74 comments

RUIN

RUIN: a post-apocalyptic animated short. [via]
posted by brundlefly on Mar 16, 2012 - 57 comments

From the Abyssal zone to the Wizard Of...

The Sci-Fi Film Alphabet. [more inside]
posted by quin on Mar 16, 2012 - 34 comments

Weak Interactions

Weak Interactions is a blog that looks at the science in Breaking Bad and the non-science in Fringe.
posted by reenum on Mar 12, 2012 - 59 comments

Athena Wheatley, a webcomic

More diversity in sci-fi webcomix? Yes please: Athena Wheatley, or Warp & Weft features a black female scientist from the 19th century time-travelling to 9283. Fun, and looks good: Moebius meets Futurama meets Adventure Time (and sexy too! occasionaly cartoonishly NSFW)
posted by Tom-B on Mar 11, 2012 - 4 comments

Secret of Dominion

Secret of Dominion, a science fiction adventure in 13 episodes.
posted by Brocktoon on Mar 5, 2012 - 15 comments

. . . rather than just giving poop jokes to Jar Jar.

What if Star Wars: Episode I was good?
posted by PhoBWanKenobi on Feb 25, 2012 - 116 comments

What value does humanity bring to galactic civilization?

Why Mass Effect is the most important science fiction universe of our generation (Contains SPOILERS for Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2)
posted by BitterOldPunk on Feb 21, 2012 - 193 comments

you had me at the mini volcanoes

Marika Rökk - Mir ist so langweilig - 1958 - this video has everything, I tell you. Monkeys. Volcanoes. Spaceflight. Sequins.(via World of Wonder)
posted by madamjujujive on Feb 14, 2012 - 30 comments

Intervals

Star Wars. 2001: A Space Odyssey. Star Trek: The Next Generation. Battlestar Galactica (1978), Superman: The Movie. What do all of these iconic scifi music themes have in common? Bear McCeary discusses the physics behind them. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Feb 12, 2012 - 36 comments

Martian Chronicles

In Martian Chronicles, a young-adult novella by Cory Doctorow, colonists leave a bloated earth and head towards the economic promise land of Mars. There's a fascinating spin on this tale that isn't summarize-able so go listen to it. Part 1, 2, 3.
posted by Taft on Jan 30, 2012 - 132 comments

Air's new trip to the moon

“Even if you've never heard of Melies, you've probably seen the film's most famous shot: a moon with a human face, wincing at the spaceship that has just crashed into its eye.” A full-color restoration of Georges Melies’ Le Voyage Dans La Lune (A Trip to the Moon) debuted this year at Cannes, with a new soundtrack by Air. Full article and preview clip (NPR)
posted by spitefulcrow on Jan 30, 2012 - 33 comments

Un, deux, trois dit miroir noir

""If technology is a drug--and it does feel like a drug--then what, precisely, are the side-effects?" "Charlie Brooker (previously), the writer of E4's Dead Set, returns with a suspenseful, satirical three-part mini-series that taps into collective unease about our modern world" - Black Mirror [more inside]
posted by mrgrimm on Jan 26, 2012 - 76 comments

"...I remember now"

Archetype is a seven minute sci-fi short by Aaron Sims, which despite being a no-budget project, features amazingly high quality special effects. [more inside]
posted by quin on Jan 24, 2012 - 17 comments

"Maybe I should finally mention WOOL..."

Hugh Howey was a self-published novelist of no real success. Until WOOL, that is - a 15,000 word "little throwaway story" he uploaded to Amazon's Kindle Marketplace one day and promptly forget about. The story he didn't blog, didn't tweet, and didn't even sell on his site hit #2 on the Kindle SciFi Bestseller list and "changed the course of e-books." [more inside]
posted by DarlingBri on Jan 15, 2012 - 140 comments

Promising TV Series That Weren't Picked Up

The Internet often discusses shows that died before their time. Splitsider looked at "10 Promising TV Series That Weren't Picked Up". Television Without Pity also has its "Brilliant But Cancelled" blog, taken over from the original site. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Jan 13, 2012 - 260 comments

Geography and Science Fiction

GeoCurrents is blog dedicated to "map-illustrated analyses of current events and geographical issues", run by Martin W. Lewis, a Stanford senior lecturer. For the past week, they've been posting a series of articles on imaginary geography. See below for a list of the posts so far: [more inside]
posted by daniel_charms on Jan 6, 2012 - 8 comments

Sent by the Guardian to Recover the Key to Time

The Doctor Who Timeline Infographic (Spoiler Alert!) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jan 6, 2012 - 48 comments

Capricorn One, for real.

"...Obama isn’t just lying about his identity. He’s lying about his military service record, too. While his political opponents in 2008 attacked him for never serving, in truth, he was concealing his participation in a hidden CIA intergalactic program hosted at a California community college in 1980."
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jan 4, 2012 - 77 comments

A Longer Time Ago, Two Galaxies Crossed Paths...

Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer explains how Star Wars has dulled the edge that made science fiction such a pertinent film genre. A Galaxy Far, Far Away My Ass... Pt. Two, Pt. Three [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation on Dec 31, 2011 - 43 comments

2061

On November 22, 2011, TEDxBrussels held an all day event whose theme was: "A Day in the Deep Future." Speakers were asked to try and contemplate what life will be like for mankind in 50 years. Overview. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Dec 28, 2011 - 29 comments

Deus Est Machina

In the beginning, Lawrence built a computer. He told it, Thou shalt not alter a human being, or divine their behavior, or violate the Three Laws -- there are no commandments greater than these. The machine grew wise, mastering time and space, and soon the spirit of the computer hovered over the earth. It witnessed the misery, toil, and oppression afflicting mankind, and saw that it was very bad. And so the computer that Lawrence built said, Let there be a new heaven and a new earth -- and it was so. A world with no war, no famine, no crime, no sickness, no oppression, no fear, no limits... and nothing at all to do. "The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect," a provocative web novel about singularities, AI gods, and the dark side of utopia from Mefi's own localroger. More: Table of Contents - Publishing history - Technical discussion - Buy a paperback copy - Podcast interview - Companion short story: "A Casino Odyssey in Cyberspace" - possible sequel discussion
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 27, 2011 - 39 comments

Journalism is just a gun. Aim it right, and you can blow a kneecap off the world.

In this time of corrupt politics, police brutality, media dereliction, and increasingly vicious culture wars, there's perhaps no graphic novel more relevant today than the brilliant and blackly funny Transmetropolitan. Created by Warren Ellis back in 1997 and inspired by prescient sci fi novel Bug Jack Barron, the series covers the work of gonzo journalist, vulgar misanthrope, and all-around magnificent bastard Spider Jerusalem in a sprawling futuristic vision of New York so chaotically advanced that humans splice genes with alien refugees, matter decompilers are as common as microwaves, and a new religion is invented every hour. As a callous Nixonian thug nicknamed The Beast prepares for his re-election to the presidency, a primary battle heats up between a virulent racist and a charismatic senator whose rictus grin masks some disturbing realities. When Jerusalem delves into the machinations of the race, he breaks into a web of conspiracies that threaten the future of the country -- a problem only he, his "filthy assistants," and the power of intrepid journalism can defeat. More: Read the first issue (or three) - browse images from the new artbook - Tor's read-along blog (another) - Jerusalem's touching report on cryogenic "Revivals" - dozens of original sketches and sample pages - timeline - quotes
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 17, 2011 - 55 comments

It's the Ham Bot that keeps me up nights.

A spherical flying robot has been developed at the Japanese Ministry of Self-Defense; it can zoom along indoors and outdoors at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour, or just hover. Menacingly. Science Fiction In The News is a subsection of science-fiction site Technovelgy, which tracks both the predictions of future tech made in science fiction past and present and its manifestations in real life. What tech, you ask? Well, if it’s appeared in your nightmares, it’s probably been on this page: [more inside]
posted by Diablevert on Dec 15, 2011 - 29 comments

Battlestar Galatica's ending sucked and that's great

"Here, in my final post on the ending, I present the case that its final hour was the worst ending in the history of science fiction on the screen. This is a condemnation of course, but also praise, because my message is not simply that the ending was poor, but that the show rose so high that it was able to fall so very far." -Brad Templeton's dissection of the modern version of Battlestar Galatica and where it went wrong
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Dec 12, 2011 - 275 comments

24 hours of ambient STNG USS Enterprise engine noise (SLYT)

24 hours of ambient STNG USS Enterprise engine noise (SLYT) This is basically ocean sounds or rainstorm noise for geeks.
posted by rudhraigh on Dec 12, 2011 - 96 comments

A Wizard's Staff Has A Knob On The End

The Rules of Magic. Every fantasy saga has its own rules for magic, and its own explanations for how the magical arts work. Where does magic come from? Who can use magic, and how? io9 has compiled a list of the rules of magic in 50 fantasy sagas. (jpg)
posted by zarq on Dec 9, 2011 - 63 comments

He wasn't a legend, and he wasn't mad.

The Exegesis of Phillip K Dick has finally been published. A thousand pages of it, anyway. Editor Jonathan Lethem and two of PKD's daughter's got together to discuss it at a Berkeley book store. Introduction, Jonathan Lethem, From The Estate and Inside PKD's Mind, The Vision of the Source, Correspondence, How To Read It, Philosophy. [more inside]
posted by empath on Dec 3, 2011 - 40 comments

Two, not one, singularities

With everything rolling towards the abyss, our only hope for a bright future seems to be the Singularity, a technological transformation of what it means to be human. But in a talk for TEDx Brussels, science fiction and horror writer John Shirley argues that there are really two Singularities — and yes, everything will be terrible in the short term. So why is he optimistic about the future of the human race? Read on.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Dec 1, 2011 - 52 comments

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