enhanced reality genre

Posted: October 10, 2012 in philosophy wars, stories
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Do we let fantasy genre off the hook for representing reality?

If you’ve enjoyed the Lord of the Rings trilogy, or perhaps the fantasy works of Neil Gaiman or Angela Carter, you’ve certainly seen something in fantasy beyond just an escape from reality. Reality is more complex than what you see.

Enter fantasy genre. In fantasy we do not just escape. We think about the big things. “Are we robot or human?” is my favorite. For what is the difference between the body with a soul and the body driven without purpose towards death? And how well does our world reward and encourage following orders? “Ours is not to question why/ ours is but to do and die,” wrote Tennyson in The Charge of the Light Brigade.

Here in fantasy we can ask the big questions, can’t we? I was a little disappointed lately, though. Sometimes I read a fantasy, and luckily it only happens sometimes, and see how it’s been written to become a movie. Then the movie will come out (expectedly) and provide escape for some people in the theater for a millimeter of their lives, but nothing changes. No big questions are asked. The emotional buttons are pressed, and the synesthesia of lights, music, colour, and death floods in to move an audience to tears, but causes no catharsis.

Worse yet, I just read a fantasy book and then saw the movie, and the movie was actually better. That never happens. I felt embarrassed for the author.

Well written fantasy is not an escape for me. It’s enhanced reality. I hereby rename good fantasy. I now call it enhanced reality genre.

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Comments
  1. kalabalu says:

    what’s in the name..but yes.once we pick up a book or enter a theatre , we consciously allow to be ab;e to live a fantasy, how much does it entertain depends on production team, but yes..40% of the time we want ..ie. fantasy..20 % we need that is reality..30 % for confusion and 10% for renaming..after all, we must review ..hmm

  2. kursia says:

    hey where is your story about your magical bike ride with the black and white goats??

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