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The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August

Alienating the Audience

Release Date: 10/01/2020

M. R. Carey on Hopeful Dystopias  show art M. R. Carey on Hopeful Dystopias

Alienating the Audience

M. R. Carey is the author of "The Girl with All the Gifts" (previously discussed on this program) as well as the Koli Trilogy. He joins the show, along with Ashland Viscosi, to talk about his approach to science fiction. 

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The Bioethics of “Gattaca” show art The Bioethics of “Gattaca”

Alienating the Audience

“Gattaca” (1997) explores a dystopian future where inequality is staggering--and genetic. Andrew Mayne joins the show to discuss the implications of genetic engineering and to what extent it should be avoided morally or prohibited legally.

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Andy Weir on Andy Weir on "Project Hail Mary"

Alienating the Audience

Andy Weir, author of "The Martian," joins the program to talk about science fiction, technology, and his new book "Project Hail Mary" 

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Jedi Warriors and Islamic Mysticism show art Jedi Warriors and Islamic Mysticism

Alienating the Audience

Dr. H. A. Hellyer gained international attention (and flak) when he compared Jedi monks to Sufi Islamic warriors in an article for CNN. He joins the show to discuss parallels between the Force and Islamic mysticism, why Star Wars is a cross-cultural touchstone, and the interaction between science fiction and Islam.

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Kurt Vonnegut Hated War show art Kurt Vonnegut Hated War

Alienating the Audience

The science fiction of Kurt Vonnegut was permeated by ethics and politics, not the least of which included socialism, opposition to war, secularism, and being nice to people in general. Royce Sharp joins to discuss.

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Galaxy Quest is the Greatest Sci-fi Comedy, Ever show art Galaxy Quest is the Greatest Sci-fi Comedy, Ever

Alienating the Audience

“Galaxy Quest” is the greatest parody of Star Trek imaginable… without technically being Star Trek. Nick Sperdute and Erin Macdonald join the show to discuss what makes the show so memorable--and hilarious.

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The Time-Backwards Robot Monster show art The Time-Backwards Robot Monster

Alienating the Audience

"Hyperion" by Dan Simmons projects Chaucer's Canterbury Tales onto a distant scifi future. Katherine Mangu-Ward joins to discuss the multiple characters who make their away on a deadly pilgrimage to meet the Shrike—a robot monster who moves backwards in time, and what it all means for humanity, mortality, and literature

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Darth Vader is a 19th Century Supervillain show art Darth Vader is a 19th Century Supervillain

Alienating the Audience

Michael Weiss, editor-at-large at The Daily Beast, joins the show to discuss Darth Vader: why he’s such a compelling malefactor, the deep inner conflict and tumult which motivates him, and the mythological figures the dark lord of the Sith represents.

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Watchmen Part 2: The Greenwood Massacre show art Watchmen Part 2: The Greenwood Massacre

Alienating the Audience

"Watchmen" kicks off with the Tulsa Race Massacre, which defines the central theme of the rest of the series: race. Hannibal Johnson is the author of “Black Wall Street 100–An American City Grapples With Its Historical Racial Trauma,” as well as the host of "Black Wall Street Remembered." 

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Watchmen's Fake Psychic Squid Attack show art Watchmen's Fake Psychic Squid Attack

Alienating the Audience

Brian Brushwood joins the show to discuss "Watchmen," the televised sequel to the film and book, "The Watchmen." Topics include: underlying tensions in the show, is Dr. Manhattan a stupid character, and was Ozymandias right? 

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More Episodes

What would happen if you were reincarnated. . . to the exact same life you just lived? What would happen when you were reborn to the exact same life fifteen times in a row?

Ashland Viscosi and Nick Sperdute rejoin for another book club episode about "The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August" by Claire North.