In the past few years, how many science fiction movies, novels or television shows can you name that have had a significant impact on our culture today? How many can you name that even had an impact on the entertainment industry? How many can you name that have been as successful as Star Wars or Star Trek? How about this year? How many science fiction movies can you name that are even worth mentioning? It’s really hard to stand in science fiction’s corner to defend it when it doesn’t give you anything to defend lately.
What’s wrong with sci fi?
Yeah, science fiction isn’t doing too well lately. Seriously, have you looked at the fantasy genre? It’s booming! You’ve got Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Game of Thrones, The Twilight Saga just to name a few. All successful movies and television shows, with The Hobbit to be a guaranteed hit in the future. Not to mention the incredible successes that these titles have had in the form of novels.
Science fiction novels are no longer even profitable at the moment as the demand for them is nowhere near the demand of what the fantasy genre currently is and has been for awhile. The whole Vampire fad saw to that. And when’s the last time you saw people lining up for a release of a science fiction novel? They did for the Harry Potter novels.
The point is, more and more authors are abandoning science fiction and the movie industry just won’t take the risk of producing an actual science fiction saga the likes of Star Wars or Star Trek. It’s far too dangerous as there is no real demand for it. People do want it, but their wishes for something epic in science fiction is being drowned out by fantasy’s big moment.
I mean what did we get lately in science fiction? Skyline, Battle: Los Angeles and Cowboys vs. Aliens comes to mind. Yikes!
So what is wrong with science fiction today?
If you’re going to start the golden age of science fiction again, don’t just give us a story about aliens invading Earth please. It’s been done to death and it’s honestly never that great.
- Independence Day
- War of the Worlds
- Cowboys vs. Aliens
- Mars Attacks
- Battle: Los Angeles
Yes, we get it. Aliens attack and the humans fight back. Most of these movies are by no means sagas as they are solely summer action flicks. The only science fiction about these movies is the “aliens” part. If you replaced the aliens with an asteroid or some sort of natural disaster, the movie would still work. It would just be called something else.
So what does that tell you?
There really is no storytelling going on. We go to these movies to see explosions and special effects.
So how about we get some story with our science fiction like we get some milk with our cereal? That would be great. Less special effects, more storytelling. That was the problem with the new Star Wars trilogy. Well, that and the horrible acting. But again, look at Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter. I know it’s hard to believe, but there is actually a story hidden somewhere within those blockbuster flicks. Usually, blockbuster movies and story don’t go together but you actually end up caring about the characters in those stories. I know it’s crazy, but you actually get wrapped up into the story.
Tired of the same old cliché characters in science fiction? If a new science fiction movie came out tomorrow, I can pretty much give you a breakdown of the characters before even knowing one thing about the movie.
Let me guess, the lead character is a human from Earth. He’s American. He’s a He. He has no fear. He’s always getting into fights in a bar. He rides a motorcycle or a horse. For some reason he’s single but is a hit with the ladies but at the same time, he can’t be in a relationship because he’s too bad-ass. He’s a smart-ass loner who always makes rebellious remarks towards superiors. Oh and wait…he’s Earth’s only hope!
Now let’s breakdown the other characters. A woman who will be his love interest who’s like a doctor or a scientist type. She’s repulsed by the lead character in the beginning and is forced to work with him for the greater good of humanity and falls in love with him in the end. A tech savvy know-it-all sidekick who has no luck with women. And a little kid and/or a minority who plays the comic relief.
Well, that was tough. Throw in some special effects, make things go boom, and ladies and gentlemen I just gave you the characters for 90% of all science fiction novels and movies.
Okay, maybe not 90% but you get the point. Pretty pathetic. The point being is that there is no creativity going on when it comes to characters in science fiction. None. I’ll even go a step further. The other lead character option is a washed up man who was a success, lost his entire family, grew an “I’m going through hard times” funky-looking beard, drinks too much, hates the world but the world needs him.
So, it’s 500 years into the future and we’re still using bullets? We’re flying through space, shaking hands with aliens and we’re still carrying a 9mm? So you’re telling me that the reason why Joe Nobody died in combat against an alien attack 500 years into the future is because he ran out of magazines? Really? So our weapons technology never evolves further than our present day weapons? Wait a second. We got flying cars that can get me from New York to Las Vegas in 3 seconds but we still use guns? Wait what…we still use cars!
That’s right, no imagination when it comes to weapons in science fiction. If it’s the far off future, and we’re traveling to a world where blue aliens kick our butts with flying reptiles, knives, bows and arrows all because we’re still using machine guns, then we deserve to lose.
We got technology that can put us into these alien avatars but we still can’t get some sort of laser gun action going on? Is that what you’re telling me? It’s science fiction! It doesn’t have to be real. They do realize this right?
It’s because of the fact that we’re still using bullets in the far off future that science fiction is dying. Because the creativity of the genre is not evolving. At least in the old Star Wars movies they were using lasers instead of bullets and that was back in the late 70′s early 80′s. It’s 2011, and we’re still using bullets in science fiction. Really?
Of course there are plenty of more reasons relating to what’s wrong with science fiction today, but I have to go and write content for this science fiction saga website that actually doesn’t have machine gun bullets or humans in it. That actually wants to tell interesting stories and build complex and intriguing characters. That knows how to make sci fi weapons more interesting.
The Origin Saga takes pride in not settling for the normal cliche’s that’s common in science fiction today. That’s the problem. All the truly creative and deserving science fiction goes unnoticed while the same old dribble gets churned out into the public eye. Get a cliché hero, throw in some digital special effects and plenty of explosions, oh and make sure there is an alien in it and you have your science fiction hit right?
Hopefully one day we can fix this problem.