The Most Important Works In Science Fiction

Discussion in 'SciFi & Fantasy' started by Plazma Inferno!, Dec 3, 2015.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

    What works in Sci-Fi you find the most important for the development of the genre, including movies, books (both fiction and non-fiction), theories, etc.?
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  3. origin Heading towards oblivion Valued Senior Member

    The Foundation Trilogy
    Stranger in a Strange Land

    Star Trek
    Star Wars
    The Day the Earth Stood Still (the original of course)
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  5. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

    Isaac Asimov
    Arthur C. Clark
    Robert Heinlein
    George Orwell
    Karl Capek
    Hugo Gernsback
    H.G. Wells
    Jules Verne
    Frank Herbert
    Stanley Kubrick

    To many Si Fi movies to list just Google them.
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  7. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

    2001: A Space Odyssey:
    The Day the Earth Stood Still: [1953 version]
    Mission to Mars:
    Star Trek:series of movies particularly the first movie re the V'GER.
    Forbidden Planet:

    Books: 2001: A Space Odyssey : 2011: The Year We Made Contact: 2061:3001: series [Arthur C Clarke:]
    The Time Machine: H.G. Wells.
    20,ooo Leagues Under the Sea: Jules Verne:
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2015
  8. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member


    [ EDIT ] Oh. Important for the genre. I thought you meant for personal growth.

    Jules Verne, for being the father of it all.

    2001, for blowing our minds.

    Star Trek: TOS, for its positive, optimistic and altruistic outlook on the future of mankind (an extreme rarity in futurist stories).

    The Twilight Zone, for showing us a world(s) that operate on cosmic justice.

    Star Wars, for its unprecedented realistic space action (that created a whole new gen of nerds) coupled with old time swashbuckling romanticism.

    The Matrix, for its new take on 'we're in a computer simulation' concept and for rebooting the Chosen Savior theme for the younger gen.

    Jurassic Park, for its sheer wonderment.

    Raiders of the Lost Ark, for - while not actually being science fiction - being the most awesomely best movie of all time.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2015
  9. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

    And one of my favourites that I failed to mention....
    And my favourite quote from that movie''........
    Ellie Arroway to a small group of children...................

    "I'll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It's bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it's just us... seems like an awful waste of space. Right"?
  10. zgmc Registered Senior Member

    Basically everything from Heinlein and Asimov. Frank Herbert had some great ones as well, not just Dune.

    Brian Herbert is good as well. I really enjoyed, "the race for god".

    I also liked Nick Sagans trilogy. I think those are the only novels he has written.

    Tv other than star trek, I thought the reboot of Battlestar Galactica was great.

    Firefly may be the greatest show to ever get cancelled.
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2015
  11. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Sry, can't stomach Heinlein anymore. His early stuff, sure, but his later stuff ... woah.
  12. river

    Video Series

    Babylon 5

    Surpasses even Star Wars

    Book , the DUNE series
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2015
  13. Sarkus Hippomonstrosesquippedalo phobe Valued Senior Member

    Oh how this "realistic space action" comment made me laugh. It is possibly the furthest from reality as I think I've seen...

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    Lucas et al merely recreated atmospheric combat in a supposedly weightless environment, yet failed to grasp/understand how things actually move in such an environment. It looks good, of that there is no doubt, and almost certainly reflects the perception that every 7 year old has of what it might be like.
    But realistic? Ha ha. Nice one! Made me smile!

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    (there, that's me smiling).
  14. billvon Valued Senior Member

    War of the Worlds, of course.
    Rossum's Universal Robots. Not many books out there that have actually created new words. And also the first serious look at artificial life.
    The Machine Stops. Predicted the societal problems caused by the Internet. In 1909.
    Brave New World.
    A Martian Odyssey. First decent attempt at a description of life on Mars.
    The Marching Morons. Good description of devolution caused by birth control.
    Starship Troopers and Forever War. Both were the beginnings of thoughtful looks at future war. Also could add Ender's Game here.
    Stranger in a Strange Land. What it's like to be an alien - told by an alien.
    Ringworld. Started the SF genre of macroengineering. Perhaps also the Titan series by Brin.
    Neuromancer. Started cyberpunk.
    The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. One of the first hard-SF stories that included a societal component.
    1984, of course.
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  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

    A future world where you can dodge lasers!
  16. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Yeah, that's not the right word. I didn't mean they move or act realistically. Just that the ships seemed so real you could touch them. Like nothing we'd seen before.
    I guess simply unprecedented special effects is what I mean.

    What makes you think they were lasers? They were blasters - whatever that is.
    (And, of course, it wasn't the future; it was a long time ago.)
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2015
  17. billvon Valued Senior Member

    OK, a world where they have blasters, which are much slower than even modern guns, and you can dodge them!
  18. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    That's where you have trouble with the bad science of Star Wars??

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    There are volumes written on the bad science of Star Wars (lovingly, albeit, but written nonetheless). And the acting. Oy. It is a joy to watch 35 years later.
  19. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Trouble? Not really; Star Wars wasn't going for accuracy.
  20. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I don't have a clue what is or isn't important. I just know what I liked.

    My favorite science fiction novel of all time is Arthur Clarke's The City and the Stars. It's just beautifully written from a literary point of view. (Which isn't surprising since Clarke actually wrote it twice. The earlier version was called 'Against the Fall of Night'. It's very good too and to Clarke's surprise, both versions remained in print.) It has that sense of wonder and transcendence that originally attracted me to science fiction. It has staggering scale, both in terms of time (a unimaginably-future Earth billions of years from now that has lost its oceans and become like today's Mars) and space (the entire galaxy, and beyond space and time entirely). It has lots of contemporary touches, which are extraordinary given that the book was written back in 1956. It has artificial intelligences and immortal human selves stored for eternity in computer memories.

    And it has the same historical pathos that you (and I) expressed in the 'giving up space exploration' thread. It's about precisely the choice that thread discusses. The whole story is about a far future remnant of immortal (sort of) humanity living endlessly reincarnated lives in an eternal city run by AIs, a society that's turned its back on the rest of the universe and turned instead to the pursuit of pleasure. But while the secret of their origins has been edited out of their memories, the spectre of what they've lost hangs over them in the sky, where the constellations themselves are artificial, artifacts of stars moved around by long gone space-faring civilization. So they never look at the sky and are hardly able to even think about it without inexplicable terror. So their whole society is built around ignoring anything the lies beyond their city's opaque dome.

    Human curiosity has been lost for good. Except that the AIs turn out to be more humane and far wiser than these last-humans, since while the "humans" have forgotten, the AIs haven't. Because they can't tell, they create a brand new human self in their depths that hasn't already lived a million pointless empty lives, incarnate him in a physical body in the same way the recorded selves are endlessly reembodied, and then feed his curiosity, guiding him on a voyage of discovery, helping him recover for himself a tiny fragment of the lost history of the human race and what the unimaginable destiny of the rest of humanity was.

    Arthur Clarke was newly emigrated to Sri Lanka in 1956 at the time this novel was written, and it's tempting to read it as his take on Buddhism, with the eternal city in which human selves are endlessly reincarnated as samsara, the world of endless suffering, and the destiny that the rest of humanity chose and the city's residents rejected as nirvana.
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2015
  21. Jeeves Valued Senior Member

    Everything after (and a couple of books before) The Moon is a Harsh Mistress is ... expendable.
    But you have to give him credit for waldos.

    The Day the Earth Stood Still
    War of the Worlds
    THX 123
    Soylent Green
    The Time Machine
    Apollo 13

    Doctor Who
    Star Trek TNG
    Babylon 5
  22. Spellbound Banned Valued Senior Member

    Batman: The Avenger of The Night (DC Comics)

    Iron Man (Marvel Comics)

  23. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Are you offering these as some of the most important works for the genre?

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