Saturday, March 28, 2015

The 100

For the past several days, I've bean watching episodes of the dystopian TV show The 100. The online description:
When nuclear Armageddon destroys civilization on Earth, the only survivors are those on the 12 international space stations in orbit at the time. Three generations later, the 4000 survivors living on a space ark of linked stations see their resources dwindle and face draconian measures established to ensure humanity's future. Desperately looking for a solution, the arks leaders send 100 juvenile prisoners back to the planet to test is habitability. Having always lived in space, the exiles find the planet fascinating and terrifying, but with the date of the human race in their hands, they must forge a part into the unknown.
Fascinating prospects. I'm amazed at the continued creativity. Dystopian stories are a significant genre in recent years: the Hunger Games and Divergent series, to name two of the most popular. One thing this show has that the others miss is some level of specificity as to what created the altered future. This one clearly states that it was a nuclear war. Like others of this genre, there is an element of outside control ostensibly for the good of all. Yet in this one, that force has no inherent evil or hunger for power. It's more of an established mythos of who and what they are.

Another difference is the element of colonization and encountering unknown others who are similar yet different, infused with their own sense of how things should be. It takes the confrontation to a level that is not only internal, but inter-relational. The leaders, as with Hunger Games and Divergent, are young, flawed and adaptable.

I've written previously about dystopian literature. I like the genre. The stories have been around for a long time, showing up lately with more frequency. It seems to be a creative response ~ as the preceding books were ~ to the strong sense of destruction that permeates so much of our society today, including global warming, economic disparity, state-sponsored torture and military excesses.

Have you read or watched dystopian stories? Which ones? How does the genre affect you? What else do you see happening in response to the difficulties and destructive forces in our society?

No comments:

Post a Comment