I decided to write up my thoughts on issues one and two of the comic Caliban. The Stake was gracious enough to give the review a home.
by Daniel Casey
I adore a small but vibrant kind of science fiction movie—space madness, losing one’s mind due to the monotony and vastness of space. At once oddly specific and broadly applicable, the space madness trope is one of the few truly unique aspects of science fiction. Such a psychological preoccupation can be best understood as a mid-20th century Space Race/Atomic Age neurosis—a needless worry that in reality masks a deeper more practical anxiety.
Often this anxiety has results from the moral damage of imperialist ambition, exacerbated by an existential fear of the unknown. Essentially, the effort to reconcile who you think you are with what you do for a living, compounded with being adrift in a consuming abyss space, drives one crazy. As with many tropes, it’s easier to trace through film—Forbidden Planet, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Solaris and Moon, Disney’s fantastic The Black Hole
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