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Deconstructing Dr. Strangelove: The Secret History of Nuclear War Films by Sean M. Maloney (2020)

Deconstructing Dr. Strangelove: The Secret History of Nuclear War Films by Sean M. Maloney (2020)

The Cold War, with all of its threats and visions of mass destruction and apocalyptic scenarios appears far away these days. However, when the menace of nuclear weapons that possibly would be fired if wrong decisions were made by a few incompetent men in the military back in the 1960s, stories, novels and mostly movies […]

Exploring The Orville: Essays on … by David Kyle Johnson and Michael R. Berry (eds.) (2021)

Exploring The Orville: Essays on … by David Kyle Johnson and Michael R. Berry (eds.) (2021)

In 2017, the first episode of the science-fiction series The Orville premiered on Fox. So far, two seasons of the space adventure show that never denied its relatedness to 1990’s Star Trek, exist. The TV series immediately was described by critics as something between a parody, homage, fan fiction, Star Trek rip-off, and bad copy, […]

Pulp Empire: The Secret History of Comic Book Imperialism by Paul S. Hirsch (2021)

Pulp Empire: The Secret History of Comic Book Imperialism by Paul S. Hirsch (2021)

Comic books as media today would not raise much attention if they featured heavy use of violence or representations of vigilantes who take the law into their own hands. On the contrary, the media now is deeply absorbed into the popular canon of the US. “The comic book, whether in the form of a collectible […]

The Final Frontier: International Relations and Politics through Star Trek … by Joel R. Campbell & Gigi Gokcek (2019)

The Final Frontier: International Relations and Politics through Star Trek … by Joel R. Campbell & Gigi Gokcek (2019)

Man’s curious nature that powered the exploration of the seas, jungles, and deserts of the planet finally also led him into extraterrestrial territories. However, long before the first satellite or test probe even got close to the moon, other ways of purely fictional exploration were at work. Prominent in the approach to understand and categorize […]

Star Trek and the British Age of Sail: The Maritime Influence … by Stefan Rabitsch (2019)

Star Trek and the British Age of Sail: The Maritime Influence … by Stefan Rabitsch (2019)

The overwhelming success of Gene Roddenberry’s Star Trek stories to a large part is based on his good instincts to tell adventure stories in ways familiar to audiences, in this case man against nature (or the incalculable risks) while cruising uncharted regions not of the Pacific, but space. Author Stefan Rabitsch in eight chapters advocates […]

Crap: A History of Cheap Stuff in America by Wendy A. Woloson (2020)

Crap: A History of Cheap Stuff in America by Wendy A. Woloson (2020)

To uncover the motivation behind the purchase of millions of basically purpose-free small “crap” objects, Wendy Woloson describes in great detail the giant industry behind the “novelties” and “labor saving inventions” that actually are little more than useless cutlery, buttons, dolls and other commodities. Objects that were originally produced only to convince buyers that they […]

The Rise and Fall of American Science Fiction, from the 1920s to the 1960s by Gary Westfahl (2019)

The Rise and Fall of American Science Fiction, from the 1920s to the 1960s by Gary Westfahl (2019)

Even though a title such as “The Rise and Fall” usually has readers prepared for a large, heavy volume that will provide audiences with loads of information amassed in a mostly boring manner, Westfahl’s book differs from that stereotype. In fact, the four major parts (and a short epilogue) read very much like a collection […]