I have recently realized that my great love of Battlestar Galactica (the newer one, obvi) and my obsession with The X-Files has grown into a full-blown crazy love of good sci-fi. Not movies, so much, but TV. My Postmodern World students this semester (that’s a class, not a commentary on them) have probably gotten tired of it, but that’s why I’m the professor, and also, sci-fi is ideal for illustrating things like postmodernism. (Hey, how have I not found a way to work Firefly in yet?) It’s gotten bad enough that I unprovokedly admitted to Tom a few days ago that it’s now time for me to start watching Star Trek. I squealed, more than audibly, when I noticed Quantum Leap showed up on Netflix. Oh no, and Dr. Who as well. It’s bad.
This seems to have some corollary with my growing obsession with superhero movies (which has yet to spread to comic books, but I’m just waiting passively for that swamp monster to sweep in). And also, dystopian fiction, which started in a highfalutin’ way when I was in my first master’s program, but now is basically just me reading Hunger Games and trying to explain why dystopian fiction is awesomer than full-on post-apocalyptic fiction, which is a conversation I found myself inexplicably having last Wednesday night in a crowded room of intelligent acquaintances.
I sit outside myself, looking in, at some loss to explain what the frak is going on. I mean: I still harbor no particular affection for Star Wars, and I don’t think I’m in any danger of starting, like, Farscape, although I doubt I’m out of the woods. But seriously, self. What up?
Well, I’m starting to think I’m just happy to immerse myself in a genre where you can actually say things about our world, almost didactically, without having to worry about realism. I’m sort of loving that you can twist things, turn them on their heads, unsettle our assumptions, and make us look at our (real) world differently – but do it obliquely. I also love that good sci fi (and superhero stories and dystopian fiction and all that) is unabashedly entertaining, even when it’s being quite explicit about its intentions.
Oh well. I tried to put up a fight. Happy surrender.