The Sci-Fi Podcast – Episode 45: The Best and Worst Sci-Fi Worlds

 

Welcome to The SciFi Podcasta wretched hive of scum and villainy a bi-weekly podcast focused on in-depth discussion of all things science fiction. The SciFi Podcast features three hosts—Mattroid, Solo, and Station!—and frequent guests. Each episode we look at a science fiction theme or franchise and take the discussion where no show has gone before.

Naboo! Riza! Madmax! One impressive element of sci-fi movies is the setting. Everything from stark, bleak post-apocalyptic Earth to lush and vibrant planets in distant galaxies, the environment and basic tenets of these worlds can inspire us to long for visiting or perhaps allowing us to find a great deal of gratitude for living in the real world instead of what horrors could be.

Is Star Wars really so ideal? Would Battlefield Earth be a worse place to find yourself than the Madmax universe? We want to hear your thoughts about these movies, so check the comments section and leave your own.

Theme music courtesy of i hear sirens, featuring Matt on bass and Liz on keyboard. Hear more of i hear sirens ethereal, instrumental, post-rock at BandCamp. Podcast production by William and Mattroid; artwork by Mattroid.

3 thoughts on “The Sci-Fi Podcast – Episode 45: The Best and Worst Sci-Fi Worlds

  1. Everyone was awesome throughout this episode, but I have to give the game ball to Liz. I would definitely not want to live in a bleak future hellscape of rat-infested tunnels where “all you have is the photograph of some dude’s mom to keep you warm at night.” That’s a great synopsis of the post-Judgment Day mythology of the Terminator movies. (Awesome insight by Mattroid, too, about the grinning Model 101s. Totally creepy and a fantastic visual flourish.) And there was also this: “The common denominator with of this is that I want food in my face the second that I crave it.” (Mattroid, in the background: “Don’t make my egg and toast cold, machine!”)

    The Robin Hood episode of Next Generation is actually not a holodeck episode. Surprising, I know, but that one is a “pranked by Q” episode instead. I’ve always had the niggling suspicion about that episode that whoever wrote it had their initial flash of inspiration by imagining Worf in outlaws-of-Sherwood drag saying, “I protest! I am not a merry man.” Then everything else was just to figuring out how to build an episode around that image.

    Speaking of Next Generation, I only know this because my daughter and I are watching the first season right now, but Solo would definitely have to pick his planet carefully if he wanted to just bliss out, podcast, and be safe from murder and rape. People die all the time in Star Trek, of course, but the writing team’s favorite point of random backstory in Season 1 is to mention that Tahsa Yar grew up on a planet where she had to always be on guard against “rape gangs.” It’s come up like three different times already. Maybe it’s supposed to make Denise Crosby seem more badass. Whatever the reason, the writers really, really wanted their audience to mentally associate Yar with rape. It’s actually more than a little creepy.

  2. Thanks, dude.

    Funny you say that about the Robin Hood ep. After we recorded I realized that it was Q (my favorite) and NOT the hollow deck, but whatever. Mistakes be happened!

    And yeah, the less Tasha Yar stuff the better. Her backstory was always so bizarre to me.

  3. Star Trek: TNG has been a series I’ve been considering binging on Netflix. I originally got into TNG probably around the age of seven in the mid-90’s. For a few years, TNG was one of the shows I watched the most. I have fairly clear memories of weekends or in the summer of staying up late at night and catching several episodes in a row. Despite the fact that I was a frequent viewer for a few years, it was just a show in syndication. So one day I may watch an episode from the middle of the series with Whoopie Goldberg, the next episode may feature season 1 with Yar, and the next episode I would watch could feature a late in the series romance between Worf and Troi.

    The closest I’ve ever come to watching the series in its proper order was getting TNG Season 1 on DVD as a Christmas present back in 2002, and being able to watch that entire season in order. However, since those DVDs were so expensive when they first came out (I want to say Season 1 cost ~$75), I never ended up buying any of the other seasons to further the watch.

    As another result of watching the show in syndication, I feel as I watched the ep where Picard and a few others turn into children multiple times while I can’t recall ever seeing the episodes featuring Picard and the Borg.

    The holodeck is the sole reason why TNG would be my sci-fi “World” I’d choose to live. Forget about becoming an officer at starfleet in order to get on the Enterprise, I’d be more than happy to become a space aged janitor and have to clean up Ferengi vomit as long as I’d have access to the holodeck. I can’t remember if this was a holodeck, but I recall an episode of Deep Space Nine where O’Brien was sentence to living several “Years” in a virtual reality. Combine the ability to live out absolutely anything with the holodeck and use whatever was done to O’Brien to make me feel as if I lived out entire lifetimes in a time span of a day, and it could be the greatest life one could live, even if you end up being killed within a month’s time because you would have felt as if you lived dozens of lifetimes.

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