Stupidfuture: Obscure Sci-Fi Parodies

Those who fear the future are largely afraid to laugh at it….


One time a thing occurred to me…what’s real and what’s for sale?  Err, uh, no, wait, that was an STP song.  Actually, it was a moment of doubt and confusion during the original Transformers movie (the 1985 cartoon one).  It was, I believe, the climactic battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons (where they killed off almost all of them so that they could sell completely different toys the following year).  And the soundtrack was Weird Al Yankovic’s song “Dare To Be Stupid.”

Let’s think about that.  The rest of the soundtrack has Kick Axe (masquerading as Spectre General) and Stan Bush, and while it might sound a bit 80s now, was at least content-appropriate.  And make no mistake, Kick Axe rocked pretty hard for the day.  But Weird Al was a complete mood-killer.  And the awkwardness of it all stuck with me all those years.  Don’t get me wrong.  I liked his work at the time.  I knew “I Lost on Jeopardy” by heart.  But Al’s ouvre had nothing to do with Transformers or sci-fi.  Unless….unless…unless…maybe the future really was stupid.  Is that what they were trying to tell us?

I have an encyclopedia of Science Fiction by John Clute.  I believe that somewhere there’s a discussion of what “SF” means: science fiction?  Speculative fiction?  Space fantasy?  What label should be applied where?  It doesn’t matter.  I’m using the one Clute doesn’t mention: Stupid Future.  Any sci-fi looks old and dated, weird and odd after a period of time.  We can enjoy that, look back at our inaccurate looking ahead, and have a good laugh.  Because the real future probably won’t be all that different from what we have now.  The 2000s are just the 1980s with more text messaging and body piercing.  But as long as people dream of lasers, robots, hovercars, and computer viruses from MacIntoshes that can disable alien spaceships, the future doesn’t look so “bright” after all….

Enjoy it anyway.

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