Talking to BBC Radio on our obsession with science fiction
From Star Wars to Alien. Sweeping space operas to time travel. The science fiction genre has it all.
I spoke to several local BBC stations around the country in celebration of 50 years since Apollo 11 and over 100 years since science fiction first graced our screens with A Trip To The Moon directed by Georges Méliès in 1902.
Sitting in a soundproof studio inside BBC London, various radio stations dialled in from 9:52am to 10:52am to chat with me about the obsession audiences continue to have with the science fiction genre.
0952 BBC CAMBRIDGESHIRE – LIVE – Presenter – Chris Mann
1008 BBC OXFORD - REC – Presenter – Lilley Mitchell
1015 BBC CORNWALL - LIVE – Presenter – David White
1038 BBC CUMBRIA - LIVE – Presenter – Richard Corrie
1045 BBC SHROPSHIRE - LIVE – Presenter – Jim Hawkins
1052 BBC SHEFFIELD - REC – Presenter – Howie Pressman
What a great experience working on live radio. Each presenter threw different questions at me and there may have been a couple of fluffs, but who cares, that’s all part of the flow of live radio. It was an adrenaline pumping 60-minute-sci-fi-marathon of live on air talking!
Below are a couple of the clips for you to listen:
It’s been 50 years since astronaut Neil Armstrong walked on the moon and announced those captivating words which are still among the most recognisably quoted in the world:
“that’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind”
The actual Apollo 11 moon landing was about 20 years before my time (let’s not do the math on that please) which means I unfortunately did not experience this world stopping event live.
My father tells the story of his experience watching the landing with fellow cadets in the Australian Air Force academy; all cheering and drinking and excitedly dreaming about the future possibilities this monumental event signified.
Star Trek said it best: “Space: the final frontier.”
For as long as there has been the technology of making talking pictures, there has also been the need to see science fiction on screen.
The science fiction genre has long been a favourite of mine. From watching The Fifth Element and later The Matrix with my family as a tween, to being cinematically challenged in film school with 2001: A Space Odyssey. More recently films like Blade Runner 2049 and Arrival continue to inspire me as a film lover, they are so deeply powerful with themes about humanities place in the future.
There is a little something for everyone in science fiction because the genre can overlay the fantastical atop a much broader genre like action, drama or horror.