More On Canonization Etc.
J. D. Vance: Hillbilly Elegy

My Career in Information Technology...

...would have been far more interesting if malfunctioning computers would always shoot out noisy sparks, flames, and smoke. Like they do in that TV series I mentioned, Another Life

Even though my wife and I had officially abandoned it, I watched another episode and a half by myself because I really wanted to find out what those aliens were like and what they were up to. But I actually laughed out loud at a couple of not-at-all-meant-to-be funny things. So okay, I give up.

I mostly agree with this review at Some funny comments, too: "Entitled Millenials In Space." And:

Is there something elitist living inside me that I found the crew members unworthy of anything other than maybe stints on The Real World? 

I think "The Real World" is a "reality" series. I've only seen a few episodes of any of those, but the comparison occurred to me, too. Bratty young people engaged in heavy and extremely self-centered emotional dramatics. As another commenter mentions, it's hard to believe these twits would ever have been entrusted with any sort of important duty, let alone manning a spacecraft on The Most Important Mission In Human History.

Why am I even bothering to write this? I guess because I was disposed to like the show, and can't quite believe that it's this bad. It's material for a future Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode.

I am certainly not a scientist, or an engineer, and obviously you have to overlook, if not accept, a certain amount of miraculous future technology in most sci-fi. But this show seemed to me to grossly abuse its privilege. Unlike Star Wars-style space opera, it isn't content just to invoke "warp drive" (or whatever) and have the spaceship travel light years. Too much of it is directly based on applications of scientific or technological pixie dust to create and resolve crises. As best I can recall, this is pretty close to an actual bit:

"We don't have enough oxygen to survive much longer! What are we going to do?!?"

"I don't know...", "Oh my God," etc.

[a few seconds of brow-furrowing]

"Wait--there's a rogue moon ahead. We can mine captive oxygen from its caves!"


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Thar IS pretty funny.


One funny thing that it has in common with a lot of sci-fi is that no matter how sophisticated the technology, sooner or later someone has to go down into a dim and damp or greasy place with a crescent wrench to fix something.

Im watching Alien. It’s very scary but it’s just ridiculous the way they keep going off by themselves into the dark corners of the ship

Classic horror movie Poor Decision.

I finally, 30 years after all the excitement, watched the first three Alien movies in edited-for-tv versions. They were plenty scary enough that way. I have to admit they are first-class spectacle. Parts of this tv show I'm talking about obviously owe a lot to them.

I've never seen Alien before. Im watching it about 45 minutes per night because after 3/4 of an hour Im too scared to continue


I mentioned "first three" above. There's at least one more, which I haven't seen, and a "prequel," which I watched part of and didn't finish. My impression is that fans aren't keen on any of those. But since you've embarked on this, consider watching the second one, too. So you can see the context of the famous "Game over, man!" In the interest of cultural literacy.

Then there is the mandatory scene, ubiquitous in X-Files, where the detectives, police, whoever go into a dark building with flashlights. I'm not sure there is a better way to reveal yourself to the enemy and while affording him the cover of darkness.


O certainly Mac! I intend to start Aliens tonight after liturgy

A thought which is supported by the fact that they usually show this from inside the room, i.e. the criminal or monster's point of view, confirming the conspicuousness of the people entering.

I felt that Ripley Escaping from the monster carrying the cat Jones in it it’s cat box really struck a blow for crazy cat ladies everywhere across the galaxy. It was much better than her escaping by herself

But why was it so much more human For her to escape caring a cat? I think we feel escape had to be an act of altruism in order to be truly heroic. You can’t just be saving your own life

I don’t take it that way. More an elemental sympathy with any normal healthy living thing. I can well imagine feeling something like that in the midst of some horror.

Someone posted something on Facebook not long ago about people in bad situations, such as women fleeing from a dangerously abusive "partner," showing what seemed to be an irrational concern for their pets, sometimes to the point of increasing the risk to themselves in order to take care of the pets. I said I could well imagine doing that. It might feel like a way of psychologically preserving or salvaging something from an intolerable situation. The cat thing seems similar. Not to take anything away from crazy cat lady-ness.

A bigger puzzle to me was why Ripley spends so much of one of the films (first? I can't remember) running around in her underwear. Hmm, why could that be?...

She is fully clothed through most of Alien. At the end when she is alone with the cat in the space shuttle she gets into her underpants and is about to go to bed. I think it supposed to signal that she is feeling totally safe. And the minute she gets into her underpants she realizes that the monster is now in the shuttle. She then gets into the spacesuit in order to fight the monster. Those who want to see Ms Weaver in her underpants are given an opportunity but it does make sense within the mivie

I guess that image has been used in advertising and reviews a lot. I would say my impression of its prominence is just my male mind at work but the circumstances are too scary for it to be sexy.

I started thinking I might watch one or more of these again just for the visual brilliance of the sci-fi aspects, but then I started thinking of the horror aspects and...nah.

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