Posts Tagged ‘Speculative Fiction’

PODCAST:

S4E5P – Preview Episode (The Screwfly Solution)

SUBJECT MATTER:

“The Screwfly Solution (1977)” by Raccoona Sheldon a/k/a James Tiptree, Jr. a/k/a Alice Sheldon (short story)

Her Smoke Rose Up Forever collects eighteen brilliant short stories from a luminary of the science-fiction genre, James Tiptree, Jr. This updated edition is the quintessential Tiptree collection and contains revisions from the author’s original notes. Tiptree’s fiction reflects the darkly complex world its author inhabited: exploring the alien among us; the unreliability of perception; love, sex, and death; and humanity’s place in a vast, cold universe. (from Amazon.com)

“”The Screwfly Solution” is a 1977 science fiction short story by Raccoona Sheldon, a pen name for psychologist Alice Sheldon, who was better known by her other nom de plume, James Tiptree, Jr. It received the Nebula Award for Best Novelette, and has been adapted into a television film. The title refers to the sterile insect technique, a technique of eradicating the population of screwflies by the release of large amounts of sterilized males that would compete with fertile males, thus reducing the native population more with each generation this is done. This story concerns a similar distortion of human sexuality with disastrous results.” (from Wikipedia.com)

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“The Screwfly Solution (2006)” by Joe Dante for “Masters of Horror” (Jason Priestley) (TV episode)

“The second season of the anthology series, Masters of Horror, brings a stellar lineup of directors and thirteen new one-hour films.”  (from Amazon.com)

Season II – Episode 7. “The Screwfly Solution” – “It begins with a terrifying rash of isolated homicides Around the world, normal male sexual urges have suddenly transformed into violent rage. Now a pair of scientists (Jason Priestley and Elliott Gould) are in a desperate race against time to figure out how – and why – the war between the sexes has turned murderous. Is a mysterious virus making every red-blooded man a potential lady-killer? Kerry Norton (BATTLESTAR GALACTICA) costars in this graphic and provocative shocker written by Sam Hamm (BATMAN, HOMECOMING) from the award-winning short story by James Tiptree Jr.” (from Amazon.com)

 

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Listen to this full-cast audio version of the short story FREE here: http://pseudopod.org/2014/08/22/pseudopod-400-the-screwfly-solution/

“The Screwfly Solution (August 22, 2014)” by Pseudopod – Episode 400 (podcast)

Narrators: Tina Connolly, Eric Luke, Matt Franklin, Anna Schwind, Mat Weller, Rish Outfield, George Hrab and Jairus Durnett – Host: Alasdair Stuart  – Audio Producer: Graeme Dunlop

“The Screwfly Solution” first appeared in the June 1977 issue of Analog, won the Nebula award for Novelette in 1978 and has been reprinted multiple times since then… It is being podcast with the permission of Jeffrey D. Smith and the Virginia Kidd Agency, Inc..” (from Pseudopod.org)

“You’ve found the world’s premier horror fiction podcast. For over a decade, Pseudopod has been bringing you the best short horror in audio form, to take with you anywhere. We pay our authors professional rates for original fiction and we reach more people every week than any other short fiction horror market.”  (from Pseudopod.org)

 

* DISCLAIMER: Please be advised that the views and opinions of the hosts and guests of NDIOS are completely their own and do not necessarily reflect the views and beliefs of the other hosts and guests or that of NDIOS.

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PODCAST:

S4E4M – Solaris (movie)*

SHOW NOTES:

Wherein musicians John Doyle a/k/a Dole (I Decline) and John Bombher a/k/a Jaxon (Bury the Machines, I Klatus) return to join me to discuss the film adaptions of “Solaris.” Dole felt that each of the films had its own strengths and weaknesses, but neither really did it for him. Jaxon mentioned that he found himself multitasking while watching the 2002 film because he was bored, while he felt much more interested in the 1972 version despite its own slow pace and long length. Ryan couldn’t recommend a viewing of the Soderbergh movie, but found himself wholly taken over by the Tarkovsy one. 

Despite our appreciation for the acting efforts in the 2002 Soderbergh adaptation, the three of us ultimately felt that the author’s blind assessment as “love in outer space” was a fair take on this film. We all had a greater appreciation the 1972 Tarkovsky version. That said, Dole expressed his frustration with the pacing of the 1972 film and he didn’t feel like it had enough going on to justify this. Ryan acknowledged that the older movie was indisputably slow, but felt it was worth it if you could be in the right frame of mind for a viewing. Jaxon appreciated the production elements in Tarkovsky’s film and he particularly enjoyed the supernatural portrayals of the alien-ocean, which were lacking in the newer movie. 

This episode was recorded in Berwyn, Illinois at Horse-Drawn Productions (where Jaxon sometimes records musicians and where Dole, Jaxon and their two other bandmates (Tony Hopper and Mike Fabiano) in “Theurgy” (Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Theurgy-233634134183768/) recorded new tracks for their forthcoming debut album. They gave me permission to include another teaser from one of their new songs called “Crack of the Egg,” which is about cracking open your mind to new ideas. Listen in for this fun tune of post-punk dark wave at the end of the episode!

-Ryan

 

WRITTEN BOOK REVIEWS:

“Solaris (2002)” by Steven Soderbergh (George Clooney) (movie)

Ryan: 2 Stars “…Soderbergh focused too much on classic themes of love and somehow didn’t go far enough with advances in technology, reducing the script to a romantic play on a space station–though the actors did well with the material they were given…

Dole: 2 Stars “…It really annoyed me that now we are changing the whole story line of what is the whole point of this story into, ‘oh no, it’s us against the alien race’…

Jaxon: 1 1/2 Stars “…the acting was fine, but the story wasn’t true to the original book at all and if it was gonna stray that far from it–it at least should have been good…

 

“Solaris (1972)” by Andrei Tarkovsky (Donatas Banionis) (movie)

Ryan: 5 Stars “…Tarkovsky’s effort is patient, thought provoking and literary with excellent production in complete complement to the deep questions explored within the source material…

Dole: 3 Stars “…It’s hard not to compare this film to 2001…but there is not a lot happening…

Jaxon: 4 Stars “…there are some real slow spots…but I love the art direction, and I love the way that it looked, and I loved that overall theme of…trying to search for something human in something that is not human…”  

 

FUN FACTOIDS:

This episode was recorded at Horse-Drawn Productions a great recording studio located in Berwyn, Illinois near Chicago: “Horse-Drawn Productions is a multi-faceted music company that has existed for over a decade, and includes two commercial state of the art recording studios, an international production company, a complete studio design & construction team, and employs instructors for music, DAW and computer lessons for individuals and groups.” (from www.horse-drawnproductions.com)

Dole and Jaxon are members band “Theurgy.” You can check out rough cuts of their dark wave style music on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/theurgyband/sets/exit-strategies-rough-mixes?fbclid=IwAR13ja8J6euwpSHXAS05aIFnFuKcbd4z18TGWrMu0JK3c_-4vVW8VDBJlxw.

 

Below is a photo from Theurgy’s first official live show on April 14, 2019 at the Underground Lounge in Chi-town:

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Beneath last night’s snowfall in #chitown @theurgy_transmissions played their first official gig. It was a high energy performance! Looking forward to the release of their debut album and many more live shows! Two members of the group (@elyodsean and @burythemachines) joint me on the latest episode of my podcast #NoDeodorantInOuterSpace for an in depth discussion of the 1961 speculative fiction novel #Solaris by #StanislawLem and a preview of one of their new songs – Available now on all major podcatchers including YouTube and our website: www.nodeodorant.com – #chicagolocalmusic #chicagomusicscene #undergroundlounge #Theurgy #newwave #darkwave #darkwavemusic #postpunk #electonicmusic #industrialmusic

A post shared by Ryan Sean O'Reilly (@ryanseanoreilly) on

 

During the episode we mentioned the library scene and paintings hanging in the space station that characters live in above Solaris. For a further discussion on this and the film in general take a look at the article “Out of this World” by Jonathon Jones for the Guardian here: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2005/feb/12/featuresreviews.guardianreview11.

Lastly, here is a trailer for the very first cinematic adaption of “Solaris (1968)” by Boris Nirenburg (Vasily Lanovoy) (TV movie), which was released in Russia:

 

* DISCLAIMER: Please be advised that the views and opinions of the hosts and guests of NDIOS are completely their own and do not necessarily reflect the views and beliefs of the other hosts and guests or that of NDIOS.

PODCAST:

S4E4B – Solaris (book)*

SHOW NOTES:

Wherein I am joined by returning special guest and musician extrodinaire John Doyle a/k/a Dole (I Decline) along with his equally talented bandmate John Bombher a/k/a Jaxon (Bury the Machines, I Klatus). The three of us delved into this month’s translated work of philosophical speculative fiction from Poland’s Stanislaw Lem. I personally felt that “Solaris” was a trippy tale with a completely unique take on encountering aliens. Jaxon found various comparisons with mental illness in the way the alien-ocean of Solaris manifested itself to the main character and their interactions. Dole really enjoyed how this book made him think about his own life and take new perspectives. All around everyone thought this story was a short, easily digested masterwork that left us with infinite realms of thought and reflection. We highly recommend it for anyone at all interested in science fiction.

We recorded this episode at Horse-Drawn Productions — a great studio in Berwyn, Illinois where Jaxon sometimes records musicians or works on his own music, when he’s not out doing live sound. Horse-Drawn is also the place where Dole, Jaxon and their two other bandmates (Tony Hopper and Mike Fabiano) recorded music for the debut album of their new project “Theurgy” (Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Theurgy-233634134183768/). They were gracious enough to allow me to include a teaser from one of their songs called “Hiding Your Face in the Wall,” which is based on a true supernatural tale regarding the fairy mounds of Scotland (Dole recommends checking out Season 1, Episode 1 of the Podcast “Unexplained” for more about this strange incident). Listen in for this awesome tuneage of dark wave (like “new wave” music, but DARKER!) at the conclusion of the episode!

-Ryan

 

WRITTEN BOOK REVIEWS:

“Solaris (1961)” by Stanislaw Lem (book)

Ryan: 5 Stars “…An interplanetary philosophical oceanic alien acid trip—to funk your mind with…

Dole: 5 Stars “…Psychological isolationist trauma melted with the environment of space…

Jaxon: 5 Stars “…I felt like the relationship between humanity and the planet was metaphor for like a relationship between two people where one of them has an awful personality disorder…

(Click the links to read full written reviews on Goodreads.com)

FUN FACTOIDS:

This episode was recorded at Horse-Drawn Productions a great recording studio located in Berwyn, Illinois near Chicago: “Horse-Drawn Productions is a multi-faceted music company that has existed for over a decade, and includes two commercial state of the art recording studios, an international production company, a complete studio design & construction team, and employs instructors for music, DAW and computer lessons for individuals and groups.” (from www.horse-drawnproductions.com)

During the show Ryan stated that the author was unhappy with the current written translation of his book, but that there was a new translation in audiobook format. You can find this definitive edition as authorized by the author’s estate here: https://www.amazon.com/Solaris-The-Definitive-Edition/dp/B0054N6KH0.

It was also mentioned that the creator of 1989’s famous city-building video game “SimCity” was inspired by Stanislaw Lem. The short story which helped give inspiration to this pioneering game was called “The Seventh Sally.” Read more about that in “Making City Planning a Game” a New York Times article by Julie Lew here: https://www.nytimes.com/1989/06/15/garden/making-city-planning-a-game.html.

Stanislaw Lem temporarily held an honorary membership in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) organization (responsible for issuing the prestigious  “Nebula” genre awards every year).  He was ousted just three years later after talking a lot of smack about American science fiction. Despite his noted general disapproval, Lem however was a fan of the American science fiction writer, Philip K. Dick. Conversely, PKD considered Lem a composite communist committee which threatened the “whole field of science fiction and its free exchange of views and ideas.” Read more about this wacky history in “Philip K. Dick: Stanislaw Lem is a Communist Committee” an article by Matt Davies for Culture.PL: https://culture.pl/en/article/philip-k-dick-stanislaw-lem-is-a-communist-committee.

Lastly, Dole and Jaxon discussed the formation of their new music project “Theurgy,” which is a post-punk dark wave band. You can check out rough cuts of their sounds on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/theurgyband/sets/exit-strategies-rough-mixes?fbclid=IwAR13ja8J6euwpSHXAS05aIFnFuKcbd4z18TGWrMu0JK3c_-4vVW8VDBJlxw. Dole was in early talks with the members of the group about creating this project while he and Ryan attended an intimate concert at Chicago’s “Empty Bottle” for american avant-garde metal group: Neurosis. Here’s a short video from that outing below:

 

* DISCLAIMER: Please be advised that the views and opinions of the hosts and guests of NDIOS are completely their own and do not necessarily reflect the views and beliefs of the other hosts and guests or that of NDIOS.