Archive for the Science Fiction Category

Empire or Federation: where would you rather live?

Posted in Movies, Science Fiction, TV with tags , , , , , , , , , on 6 July 2008 by Doc Tourneau

Because I’m a geek, and because I have plenty of time, I’ve been thinking lately about Star Trek and Star Wars. Comparing and contrasting, listing pros and cons, entertaining questions for which I’ve never had satisfactory answers, etc. I’m a fan of both franchises (how I hate that term!), and, in my idle moments of Walter Mitty-like fantasizing, project myself into their respective universes. While I’m (mentally) there, these are some of the things that occur to me…

In Star Trek*, you never see any private or commercial space traffic. How come? Is that by design, or merely a practical consideration of Trek’s limited budgeting? Alien ships aside, Starfleet appears to be the only authorized human venue for space travel. Which would be kind of like, in our present day, having only Navy ships at sea; no freighters, no yachts, no tankers, no runabouts — only armed-to-the-teeth warships, even for the most benign exploratory or scientific purposes. And, I guess, only Air Force planes in the sky. Hey, that would be like living in a military dictatorship!

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An unfairly forgotten Hammer Films classic

Posted in Horror, Movies, Science Fiction with tags , , on 18 May 2008 by Doc Tourneau

… Recently, while spending an enjoyable time surfing through Glenn Erickson’s terrific DVD Savant website, I happened along his review of THE CRAWLING EYE (a.k.a. THE TROLLENBERG TERROR,) an old British science fiction vehicle for Forrest Tucker. I had less-than-fond memories of that picture also, primarily due to its US poster for The Abominable Snowman with its American titlinglaughable no-budget special effects. Erickson gave it high marks for its writing and direction, however, noting its tight construction and sustained, mounting suspense. So, figuring I had nothing to lose other than a quickly-turned-over Netflix rental, I decided to check it out. Following a link from THE CRAWLING EYE review, I read his piece on the 1957 THE ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN. “What the hell?” I figured, “it’s Hammer, it’s got Peter Cushing; maybe it’s worth another look, after 40 years….”

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Vintage Ads From the Science Fictional Future

Posted in Science Fiction with tags on 8 May 2008 by Doc Tourneau

This is pretty cool: science fiction author Mark A. Rayner created a contest for people to create a retro/vintage-looking advertisement for a product found in the annals of science fiction. Adapting the artwork from an old BOHM ad from 1947, I created an ad for the CHOAM Corp. from Frank Herbert’s Dune novels. And I came in Second Place! Woo hoo! Here’s a small-sized representation of my entry:

The full-size version can be viewed here.

You can find all three finalist’s work at Mark’s blog here, as well as all of the other entries. It was a great idea for a contest; I hope he does it again!