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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > Science Fiction & Fantasy

Science Fiction & Fantasy Farscape, Babylon 5, Star Wars, Firefly, vampires, genre books and film.

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Old October 2 2012, 07:02 AM   #106
Ian Keldon
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Frau Blucher wrote: View Post
Since the only way you can get a boson is to smash protons together at the speed of light and then it lasts for a nanosecond, I think we're pretty much in the realms of fantasy here.
Bosons naturally occur, or else nothing would be affected by gravity.
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Old October 2 2012, 07:08 AM   #107
Ian Keldon
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

DarthTom wrote: View Post

Conversely, films like Avatar and more hard fantasy like Harry Potter embrace the notion of the supernatural. The characters don't tend to debunk the supernatural but latch hold of it. In Avatar's case, the goddess of the forest is eventually found to exist and is supernatural even by the visiting humans.
Untrue. Ewa is entirely explainable in scientific terms with no recourse to the "supernatural" required.

In Avatar, Ewa is simply the super-consciousness of the combined Pandoran ecosystem. The technologically unsophisticated Na'vi may worship this super-consciousness, but in terms of reality it is akin to the natives' worship of Vaal in "The Apple", or the Bajoran Prophets. Actual beings that relatively primitive people have elevated to the status of divinity in some fashion.
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Old October 2 2012, 07:16 AM   #108
Ian Keldon
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

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I mean the fact that he was repulsed by reading a book about dragons, but he's perfectly happy to read a book about SPACE dragons. You know, making fun of the elitist sci-fi types for looking down on fantasy for no real reason?
The difference, again, is in the definitional means.

Pern "dragons" = genetically engineered enlarged versions of existing naturally evolved small flying reptiles. The fire breathing is explained as the end result of an enzymatic reaction to certain minerals which they ingest when they need to produce flame.

All in alignment with science and scientific principles.

"Between" is a borderline case, BUT it operates by clear rules with regular, predictable results.

Fantasy "dragons" = creatures of and embued with abilities by supernatural, magical means. Fantasy fire breathing is totally without scientific explanation, simply being a property of "dragon-ness" for want of a better term.
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Old October 2 2012, 09:25 AM   #109
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Science ≠ pseudoscience.

Also multiquote isn't magic. Use it.
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Old October 2 2012, 09:26 AM   #110
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

You're so strict. I like it.
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Old October 2 2012, 09:39 AM   #111
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

You should see how I use the ruler on students' knuckles.
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Old October 2 2012, 03:32 PM   #112
Ian Keldon
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
Science ≠ pseudoscience.
That's why it's called science-fiction, Iguana. And science in science-fiction fiction =/= magic, even if they serve similar plot functions. ALL fictions have basic story and plot functions that must be served by one means or another.

Also multiquote isn't magic. Use it.
You know, playing Mod is a pretty poor substitute for reason and logic when arguing, don't you?

Last edited by Ian Keldon; October 2 2012 at 09:01 PM.
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Old October 2 2012, 05:53 PM   #113
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
Untrue. Ewa is entirely explainable in scientific terms with no recourse to the "supernatural" required.

In Avatar, Ewa is simply the super-consciousness of the combined Pandoran ecosystem. The technologically unsophisticated Na'vi may worship this super-consciousness, but in terms of reality it is akin to the natives' worship of Vaal in "The Apple", or the Bajoran Prophets. Actual beings that relatively primitive people have elevated to the status of divinity in some fashion.
Planet wide "super-consciousness," falls close enough for me into the range of fantasy and way outside of at least Trek sci-fi where repeatedly they debunk such notions as nonsense.

Check out Star Trek V the film and why, 'god doesn't need a Starship.'

Asking the question in a different way: If I understand you correctly you see no qualitative difference in genre between say the Twilight Series or the Potter books and films and Trek in terms of format, style, narrative etc when it comes to their respective approaches to the notion of 'fantasy,' versus science fiction?

Or is it simply that any storyline in space [what ever the elements] is both fantasy and science fiction to you?

Another great example for me is the film Serenity but the difference between say Avatar and Serenity in terms of the 'supernatural parts,' is they explained the Zombies - albeit eventually - by using science rather than supernatural elements.
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Old October 2 2012, 08:58 PM   #114
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
Also multiquote isn't magic.
I dunno... I don't always get regular, predictable results when I use it.

Frau Blucher wrote: View Post
You're so strict. I like it.
I'm unfamiliar with your Halloween username. How do you pronounce that?
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Old October 2 2012, 09:22 PM   #115
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Silvercrest wrote: View Post

Frau Blucher wrote: View Post
You're so strict. I like it.
I'm unfamiliar with your Halloween username. How do you pronounce that?
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Old October 2 2012, 09:22 PM   #116
Ian Keldon
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

DarthTom wrote: View Post
Planet wide "super-consciousness," falls close enough for me into the range of fantasy and way outside of at least Trek sci-fi where repeatedly they debunk such notions as nonsense.
Do they? I don't recall Trek ever addressing the topic of an such a planetary superconsciousness.

Check out Star Trek V the film and why, 'god doesn't need a Starship.'
Has nothing to do with an integrated neural network trillions upon trillions of times larger than the human brain and what consciousness it may or may not possess.

Asking the question in a different way: If I understand you correctly you see no qualitative difference in genre between say the Twilight Series or the Potter books and films and Trek in terms of format, style, narrative etc when it comes to their respective approaches to the notion of 'fantasy,' versus science fiction?
NO. That is not what I am saying. I'm saying that all stories have certain plot-mechanical processes in common. Those processes can be met in different ways, but have the same effect.

Example: My story needs to get the protagonists from Planet A to Planet B.

Fantasy: The protagonists pray to a god, or a wizard casts a spell to move them from A to B. This invokes an arbitrary, supernatural component with no scientific basis or credibility.

Science-Fiction: The protagonists board some sort of spaceship which travels from A to B. The trip may either be instantaneous (a space fold of some sort), or one or more FTL drives of varying plausibility may be used.

Alternately they use a device that creates a stable wormhole through which they can travel from A to B without the use of a ship (a la Stargate).

In both stories, the effect is the same, and the same plot need serviced:get the protagonists from A to B.

However, the fantasy story throws out or ignores a mechanism consistent with known or extrapolated scientific principles in favor of one invoking arbitrary supernatural power.

The science-fiction story on the other hand EMBRACES the known or extrapolated scientific principles.

That is the critical difference between the two, even though, as I said, they have the same plot effect.

Another great example for me is the film Serenity but the difference between say Avatar and Serenity in terms of the 'supernatural parts,' is they explained the Zombies - albeit eventually - by using science rather than supernatural elements.
And Avatar explains Ewa ALSO using science (neurally interconnected ecosystem) rather than supernatural, just like Bajor's prophets, while worshiped by Bajorans, were shown to simply be non-linear life forms.

ETA: Just remembered that Trek DID address the idea of planetary consciousness in one of the books ("Mutiny on the Enterprise" if memory serves), and far less creditably than Avatar did.

Last edited by Ian Keldon; October 2 2012 at 09:37 PM.
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Old October 2 2012, 09:41 PM   #117
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

What about comic book stuff like the Avengers or the Justice League that combines the scientific (Batman/ Iron Man's tech) with the supernatural (Wonder Woman/Thor)? I still tend to think of them as Sci-Fi since most of the stuff is approached from a more scientific perspective (the Gods originating in other dimensions, and stuff like that).
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Old October 2 2012, 09:55 PM   #118
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Frau Blucher wrote: View Post
Silvercrest wrote: View Post

Frau Blucher wrote: View Post
You're so strict. I like it.
I'm unfamiliar with your Halloween username. How do you pronounce that?
BLUCHER! (NEIGHHHH!)

GAAAH! You beat me to it!

Yes, that was supposed to be a setup.
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Old October 3 2012, 01:11 AM   #119
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Re: Is fantasy more popular than science fiction? If so why?

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
Science ≠ pseudoscience.
That's why it's called science-fiction, Iguana.
So you know it's not really science. Good. I was worried because of your boson comment.

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
And science in science-fiction fiction =/= magic, even if they serve similar plot functions. ALL fictions has basic story and plot functions that must be served by one means or another.
If we squint hard enough, ALL fiction looks more or less the same. The point of contention is whether the "science" in science-fiction is really different from the magic in fantasy except on a cosmetic level. I feel I had to restate the issue before it got too fuzzy in the details of specific narrative examples. Avatar's Eywa can be used to argue both for it being a "scientific/physical" concept and a magical/metaphysical one, which only tells me it's a pretty crappy example.

Ian Keldon wrote: View Post
Also multiquote isn't magic. Use it.
You know, playing Mod is a pretty poor substitute for reason and logic when arguing, don't you?
I can argue pretty well and point out your apparent inability to use simple forum tools. I'm amazing like that.
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