Science Fiction Fantasy  
Go Back   Science Fiction Fantasy Chronicles: forums > Film & TV > Featured TV Series > General TV Discussion

General TV Discussion General discussions on latest shows to classic viewing.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old 24th March 2008, 10:34 PM   #31 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: UK: ENGLAND:
Posts: 1,352
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Further thought - we've just had a thread on what makes fantasy, fantasy in the book section, which was pretty varied.
Some of the comments in this thread shows that people have very different ideas as to what they expect from SF. Almost worth looking at what people want from SF, if anyone is interested.

By the way, brsrkrkomdy, what is wrong with "sci-fi"? Been meaning to ask that question for a while on this forum. I've always known SF as sci-fi but since coming on the forum become aware that some people seem to regard the term with loathing. Bit puzzled by that. I know you said "don't get me started" but seemed a good time to ask.
Montero is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24th March 2008, 11:01 PM   #32 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
D_Davis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Washington
Posts: 1,349
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Besides the old anthology shows, I've never really loved any sci-fi television.

The thing that kills it most for me is the fandom associated with the shows, and not so much the shows themselves, although they don't do much for me either.

I've never warmed up to Joss Whedon, so that killed Buffy, Angel, and Firefly for me.

I always thought that the Sam Raimi produced stuff was no good.

And I've never really liked Stargate, Farscape, Babylon 5, or any of the other shows.

I guess the modern, live-action, western televised sci-fi just doesn't do it for me.


If I need to get my fix of televised sci-fi, I usually turn to Japanese animation. I find stuff like Ghost in the Shell: SAC to be far superior.

Last edited by D_Davis; 24th March 2008 at 11:30 PM.
D_Davis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 12:22 AM   #33 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Shropshire
Posts: 4,707
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

The last and only quality Science Fiction to be shown on British television was in the 1950's and the titles always included the name 'Quatermass'.
mosaix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 02:30 AM   #34 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: California
Posts: 29
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

I think there is still a thirst for quality sci-fi; the studios are just using "easy" entertainment as an excuse. The true reason there are so many reality shows on television is because they are cheap to produce, not because they are the "only things audiences will watch".
spaceseed is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:04 AM   #35 (permalink)
Moderator
 
j. d. worthington's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 13,578
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Montero View Post
By the way, brsrkrkomdy, what is wrong with "sci-fi"? Been meaning to ask that question for a while on this forum. I've always known SF as sci-fi but since coming on the forum become aware that some people seem to regard the term with loathing. Bit puzzled by that. I know you said "don't get me started" but seemed a good time to ask.
Well, I'm not brsrkrkomdy, but I'll take a whirl at this one, as I'm also from the generation that loathes that particularly ugly neologism.

Take a gander at the following for some of the reasons why that term is offensive to some:

Science fiction - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Harlan Ellison Webderland: Harlan Ellison on Heaven's Gate

The latter is a bit polemical in approach, but it does sum up what that term stood for for so long (and many, myself included, would argue it still does)...
j. d. worthington is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:27 AM   #36 (permalink)
Goblin Princess
 
Teresa Edgerton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: California
Posts: 10,708
Blog Entries: 18
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Montero View Post
By the way, brsrkrkomdy, what is wrong with "sci-fi"? Been meaning to ask that question for a while on this forum. I've always known SF as sci-fi but since coming on the forum become aware that some people seem to regard the term with loathing. Bit puzzled by that. I know you said "don't get me started" but seemed a good time to ask.
The problem with answering that question is that it's usually more of a rhetorical question by someone who doesn't actually want to know why -- and any answer is far more likely to elicit an argument than provide enlightenment.

However, in the reckless hope that you may be different, I will throw myself into the breach and attempt an explanation:

The term "sci-fi" was invented by science fiction insiders, however, it never really caught on because most fans were perfectly happy with the abbreviation SF. For many, many years, just about the only time you heard (or read) the term "sci-fi" it came from the lips (or the typewriter) of someone who was obviously using it in a flippant and dismissive way. Or it was being used by someone who really hadn't a clue about what real science fiction was.

(It's like when someone who doesn't like you very much insists on calling you Bobby, no matter how many times you tell them that your name is Robert. Your friends don't call you Bobby, your family doesn't call you Bobby; it's only this person who's pretending to be cute and funny, while actually treating you with contempt.)

So, for many of us who are old enough to remember when the term "scif-fi" was applied in that spirit, the use of the word always induces a cringe reaction. Yes, yes, yes, we do know that most people who use it these days don't mean to be condescending or unfriendly -- usually it's quite the reverse -- but when people tell us, "oh, you shouldn't feel that way" ... well, if anyone has ever said that to you about anything, you probably know that it's far more likely to make you feel that way more rather than less.

A much better response (not that I'm coaching you or anything) is, "Ah, I see, " whether you do or not.
Teresa Edgerton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:29 AM   #37 (permalink)
Goblin Princess
 
Teresa Edgerton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: California
Posts: 10,708
Blog Entries: 18
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Obviously, JD posted his response while I was still composing mine.

But now you have two answers to mull over.
Teresa Edgerton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:45 AM   #38 (permalink)
Moderator
 
j. d. worthington's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 13,578
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

And, at the risk of overkill, I'll add a third point. "Sci-fi" is a holdover term from a period when sf was considered "that far-out space trash" -- which is still the opinion a great number of people hold of the genre, in part due to the way it was presented. To quote Frank Kelly Freas, one of the major artists in the field:

Quote:
There were more Wild, Wayward, Willing and Wanton Witch-Women in the cover blurbs than ever got into the stories, and the 3-B cover was an almost inviolable rule: Boob, Babe, and BEM.... Anything else was purely incidental....
-- Frank Kelly Freas: The Art of Science Fiction, p. 36
j. d. worthington is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:28 PM   #39 (permalink)
The Enigma of Steel
 
steve12553's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 1,304
Blog Entries: 21
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

"Sci-Fi" ended up in the same category as "Trekkie". Hard core Star Trek fans prefer to be "Trekkers". They consider "Trekkies" as people who want to have sex with Mr. Spock (a la "groupie"). Millions of people unknowingly insult "Trekkers" all the time along with their unintentionally facetious "Sci-Fi" references.
steve12553 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 04:55 PM   #40 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Connavar's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Sweden
Posts: 8,127
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Wow i never knew Sci-fi meant things like that.

I will never use it again !

I didnt know it refered to things people think are SF that i dislike. When people that dont read SF ask why i read so much of it they assume i read cause i like the dumb "Sci-fi" movies they see .


Which is really the opposite from the kind SF books i like.

Thanks Teresa and JD for making it clear
Connavar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 05:07 PM   #41 (permalink)
Goblin Princess
 
Teresa Edgerton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: California
Posts: 10,708
Blog Entries: 18
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Well, that's a more complicated issue altogether, Steve. "Trekkie" is the older term, and it appears to be the one preferred by Gene Roddenberry. (I know I heard the word "Trekkie" in use at SF conventions a long time before I ever heard of "Trekkers," and then I thought it was a misprint in a newspaper article.) But when newer fans began to self-identify as "Trekkers," so began the debate as to which term was more correct and respectful. The "Trekkers" eventually won out by sheer force of numbers, but the "Trekkies" do have seniority on their side. It probably is safer to say "Trekker," since there are more of them, and any chance Star Trek fan you might meet is more likely to prefer that term and deride the other. Still there are a few old "Trekkies" still hanging around.

Meanwhile, fans on either side of this schism attempt to prove that their group is the more devoted, knowledgeable, and authentic, while simultaneously asserting that they are the ones who actually have lives outside of Star Trek.
Teresa Edgerton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 08:23 PM   #42 (permalink)
Oops
 
Lith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: USA:
Posts: 714
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

I thought the division was that Trekkies were fans of the old show, and Trekkers were fans of the new? But use of Trekkers has to stay firmly within fandom; attempting to correct someone from Trekkie to Trekker will result opening yourself up to more derision than you originally were.

The problem with Sci-Fi is that it just rolls off the tongue so much easier than any other term. You can't say SF, and science fiction is just too formal. So I'll be a bit like the young physicist, waiting patiently for all the bitter, old fans (er, physicists) to die off...
Lith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 08:37 PM   #43 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
D_Davis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Washington
Posts: 1,349
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

I prefer the catch all term:

Nerd

/is one
D_Davis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 08:57 PM   #44 (permalink)
Goblin Princess
 
Teresa Edgerton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: California
Posts: 10,708
Blog Entries: 18
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lith View Post
You can't say SF, and science fiction is just too formal.
And yet so many of us have managed the feat over the years.

In any case, in writing SF is by far the best alternative. As an abbreviation, it's quick and easy. No one is likely to correct you. And the possibility of some old-timer coming along and (metaphorically speaking) beating you over the head with a cane or impaling you with a knitting needle is greatly reduced.
Teresa Edgerton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25th March 2008, 08:58 PM   #45 (permalink)
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: UK: ENGLAND:
Posts: 1,352
Re: Is science fiction no longer entertaining television for mainstream viewers?

Thank you very much to everyone for explaining sci-fi in so much detail, now I know why. Do like to know why.
(Probably because I'm a scientist, or maybe I became a scientist because I like to know why....)

All the Star Trek fan discussion and nerd comment puts me in mind of an interview I saw on TV a few years ago. Terry Pratchett at a con being interviewed by Craig Charles from Red Dwarf (who should have known better, unless it was a planned feed line).

Craig Charles: "So do you think fans are the salt of the earth then?"
Terry Pratchett: "Yes, they're pale and sharp."
Montero is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 06:46 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.