Tuesday, April 12, 2011


While I found the linked article interesting, I tend to feel that it's using the word dystopia in a manner most people wouldn't understand; even calling Blade Runner dystopian seems wrong to me, as the society shown in the movie never seems particularly repressive. For a world to be truly dystopian (i.e. the opposite of utopian) I think it really has to be authoritarian, and the decayed world of Blade Runner doesn't seem to count; it's certainly not what I'd call utopian, but the human characters still seem to have the freedom to live their lives their way if they don't draw undue attention to themselves. Replicants might feel differently.

At least one of my unproduced horror movie scripts is set in a dystopian world, but the biggest problem I find with writing dystopian fiction these days is that events in the real world overtake me so fast that I can barely keep up. A few years ago I started writing an SF novel about a future civil war in Britain which I've been dabbling with ever since, but British society has changed so rapidly over that period that news stories often seem far more dystopian than I'd imagined the country could decay to when I began writing it.

I mean, who'd have imagined ten years ago that people would be 'strip searched' by an X-ray machine merely in order to get on a plane?

1 comment:

  1. I agree, Blade Runner doesn't feel like a dystopia, it's more of a noir detective story with a sci-fi twist. Dark and gritty doesn't make dystopia. Although you could argue that it was a dystopia for the Replicants, but since the story wasn't from their POV, it doesn't really count.

    And 'ugh' at TSA. Talk about Big Brother screening you. :P