Sunday, January 19, 2014
19 January 2014
Benjamin Ayres b. 1977 (Lost Girl, The Vampire Diaries, Smallville, Supernatural, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate SG-1)
Allen Steele b. 1958 (author, Orbital Decay, The Death of Captain Future)
Katey Sagal b. 1954 (Futurama, Lost, Jack and the Beanstalk , Smart House)
Richard Lester b. 1932 (director, Superman II and III, The Mouse on the Moon)
Tippi Hedren b. 1930 (The 4400, The Birds)
Edgar Allan Poe b. 1809 died 7 October 1849 (author, The Masque of the Red Death, The Fall of the House of Usher)
In his 1998 book The Dreams Our Stuff is Made Of, Thomas M. Disch argues that Poe, not Jules Verne or H.G. Wells, is the true father of science fiction and that it is a distinctly American genre which from its inception was closely linked to hoaxes and Poe was involved in a few during his very brief life. I'm not completely convinced by this theory, though I recommend the book wholeheartedly and thank my friend Michael Strickland for giving it to me. Whether or not he counts as science fiction, he definitely counts as fantasy and this blog acknowledges artists from both genres.
Many happy returns to the living on the list today, and to Edgar Allan Poe, nobody loved a rotting corpse as much as you did, buddy, and now you have been one for eight score and five. Keep up the good work.
Predictor: Ray Bradbury in The Martian Chronicles, published 1950
Prediction: In November 2005, nuclear war breaks out on Earth and the vast majority of settlers on Mars decide to return.
Reality: Perhaps I should have written "spoiler alert" on the prediction, as this is the first real plot point in The Martian Chronicles, a loosely connected set of short stories collected and published in 1950. This will also be the last prediction taken from the book, ignoring the dates past 2020 that make up the last few chapters.
I have to say the idea that people on Mars would return to Earth en masse because of nuclear war makes no sense to me. Splitting the species into two populations so widely removed from one another greatly increases the chances of survival. For one branch to rejoin the other as it heads on a suicidal path is a very bad idea.
Looking one day ahead... INTO THE FUTURE!
OMNI Future Almanac gets its regular Monday shot at trying to guess the events to come from its vantage point in 1982.
Join us then... IN THE FUTURE!