Monday, November 23, 2009

Flash Forward a Science Fiction TV series?

While viewing the previous posts on the SF blogger, I saw that someone had mentioned Lost being a science fiction TV series. As I was reading that particular blog post, I began thinking about the new TV series called "Flash Forward". For those of you who have not seen this TV show or haven't heard anything about it, here is a little background information for you:

So basically, a mysterious event causes everyone on the planet to simultaneously lose consciousness for 137 seconds. During these 137 seconds, everyone on the planet sees what appears to be visions of their lives approximately six months in the future. After the loss of consciousness, LA FBI agents begin the process of determining what happened, why it happened, and whether it will happen again.
The team investigates a number of events related to the flashforward, including "Suspect Zero", who did not lose consciousness during the event, the sinister "D. Gibbons", and a similar mass loss of consciousness in Somalia in 1991. This is a general summary of the TV series as to date, but I don't want to give too much information away because I RECOMMEND this show and you should all watch it!

Anyways, after beginning to watch this TV series, I started researching about whether or not the TV series can be considered Science Fiction. The TV series is originally based off the Science Fiction novel "Flash Forward" by Robert J. Sawyer. This novel is set in a fictionalized and overly futuristic year 2009. At CERN (The European Organization for Nuclear Research), the Large Hadron Collider accelerator (the ALICE experiment) is performing a run to search for the Higgs boson. The experiment takes a unique effect: the entire human race also loses consciousness for about two minutes. During this time, nearly everyone sees themselves in the future (by about 21 years). The flashforward that takes place in the book and the flashforward that takes place in the TV series do differ. However, they are fairly similar in regards to the massive loss of consciousness that resulted in deaths, accidents, and also the futuristic flashforwards that everyone on the planet sees (these occur in both the book and the TV series).

I think that there are a few reasons in which Flash Forward (the TV series) can be included in the science fiction genre. Although this particular show does differ from the science experiment taking place in Robert Sawyer's book, it does represent some of the conventions that shape the science fiction genre.

I think that when people see the future, either by traveling to it or even just viewing it in general, it can somehow be tied to science fiction. As technology becomes stronger and more determined, will it be possible for people to actually see into their future? Wouldn't that be interesting. But anyways, I think that another example of the show being science fiction is the idea of time travel. Although the characters are not traveling back into time or embarking on an actual travel to say- the moon, the characters and everyone on the planet experiences a time travel six months ahead of the current time in 2009.

I was most curious to write on this TV show because I was wondering if anyone had similar feelings. Does anyone else think that this show can be classified as science fiction? I think it can.

As I touched upon earlier, I think the one aspect of the TV show that really jumped out at me as being science fiction was the idea of time travel; the time travel that exists during the massive blackout that the entire planet undergoes. I think that show definitely sells the fiction part of the genre. Of course it is not probable that everyone on the planet is going to black out at the same time and see their future, but hey you never know. The science aspect of the show can be possible correlated to the ongoing investigation that the FBI has initiated. I guess a lot of the investigation is science driven-In example, fingerprinting, tapping phone lines, etc. All of these things would not be able to be done without the science that has been previously created and experimented on. Another example, technology. I think that technology has a lot to do with the science fiction genre. This show is filled with technological aspects of the 21st century.

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