It’s Personal – Proposal

Learning to Roll – A Short Film

I would like to make a short film about learning to play role-playing games (i.e. Dungeons and Dragons). The film will focus on the imagination (or lack thereof) of the characters as they attempt to teach their friend to play DnD. I plan on shooting this film in an interesting manner. When focusing in on players who are experienced at DnD the set will be in the woods, while when the film is focusing on the inexperienced player the players will be seen sitting around a card table in a basement. I plan on shooting entirely on location allowing me to direct in a style that I am more familiar with.

Production Support:

  • Vixia
  • Access to the MML

Visual and Creative Research:

  • Dragonslayer – Film, 1981.
    • I plan on using this film to look at the ways that they deal with magic and how they shoot the characters themselves.
  • Conan the Barbarian – Film, 1982.
    • More visual research. I plan on specifically watching “the battle of the mounds” sequence and take a critical look at how they film a fight in a fantasy film.
  • The Eternal Champion Cycle – Novels, 1960s – Today. By Michael Moorcock.
    • I plan on looking through these novels for character archetypes in which the people playing DnD can take elements from. These classic novels, along with The Lord of the Rings, were some of the main inspirations behind Dungeons and Dragons.

Help From the Class:

  • An Editor (or at least someone who can help me edit)
  • A Currently Unknown number of Actors
  • Producer (Not needed, however, I find that I work better with a producer breathing down my neck)

My Timeline:

  • Script to Be Completed by Week 4
  • Begin Shooting Week 6
  • Editing


This is where my various posts on Sci-Fi influences will appear!


This is a gallery of various stills and footage

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This is the original opening for the 1959 season of The Twilight Zone

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And here is the opening sequence for the third season of Star Trek.

Research Paper

Part 1: An Introduction into the World of Science Fiction

Science fiction is currently one of the most popular genres on television. With a lengthy pedigree of some famous and infamous characters and shows, it gets you wondering: what were the major influences in science fiction television during its golden age (the fifties, sixties, and early seventies)? To answer this question I began to watch some of these classic series, Star Trek and The Twilight Zone, more closely and to look at the films and novels that were their contemporaries to see if they had any influence on these shows. I read the classic sci-fi novels Dune (1965), Fahrenheit 451 (1951), The Man in the High Castle (1962), Foundation (1951), and Day of the Triffids (1954). In addition to reading these amazing novels I watched several popular sci-fi films from that era: The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951), Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), and Forbidden Planet (1956). It soon dawned on me that science fiction television was heavily influenced, if not downright copying, some of their contemporary novels and films.

To fully understand the influences of such great shows as Star Trek and The Twilight Zone you must understand what science fiction is. The dictionary defines science fiction as: “a form of fiction that draws imaginatively on scientific knowledge and speculation in its plot, setting, theme, etc.” I have to disagree. To me science fiction is much more than this. In my opinion, sci-fi is more like an umbrella that covers a large number of subgenres that contain similar tropes. Within science fiction, I believe, there are three major subgenres that then splinter into a staggering amount of sub-subgenres. The three major subgenres are: space opera, planetary romance, and speculative fiction. Since some people are unfamiliar with these subgenres I’ll give some quick definitions of the major subgenres. Space opera’s storyline mostly takes place on a spaceship, or contains a large amount of space travel. An example of this would be Isaac Asimov’s classic tale Foundation. Planetary romance is similar to space opera in that it’s settings are limited to, or largely take place on, an alien world. A classic example of this would be Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel Dune. The third and most hard to define subgenre is speculative fiction. These are the kinds of stories that ask “what if?” as in “What if books were banned?” or “What would America be like if we lost World War II?” examples of this genre would be Philip K. Dick’s novel The Man in the High Castle and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. Now that the preliminary definitions are out of the way, let’s move on to a brief discussion of what where the more popular and influential science fiction shows of this golden age.

Part 2: The Shows

The Twilight Zone:

On October 2nd, 1962 audiences all across America heard the dulcet tones of Rod Serling as he calmly told his audience that “there is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call the Twilight Zone.” Each week for 5 years Serling would deliver what he pitched to the executives as a series of “half-hour” movies, authored by some of the best minds in modern science fiction and fantasy, and starring some of the hottest new talents of the era. The Twilight Zone was an anthology series, meaning that each week there would be a different story, cast and crew, that each week was a new “trip into the Twilight Zone.” The Twilight Zone remains one of the most popular shows of all time due to its amazing scripts, great acting and early cameos of such future stars as Robert Duval and Star Trek’s William Shatner.

Star Trek:

On Thursday, September 6th, 1966 America tuned in to the very first episode of Gene Roddenberry’s famous Star Trek. The basic premise of the show was that each week the audience would follow the crew of the United Federation Starship Enterprise on their “5 year mission to explore new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man had gone before.” Soon the names James Tiberius Kirk, Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy and Mr. Spock would forever be associated with phasers, green women, and bad special effects. But why has this show stayed popular? The answer may be the action-packed, yet (sometimes) intelligent scripts, the character development, or maybe the fact that Roddenberry’s influences on the show were already very intelligent and popular. Roddenberry has already admitted a bunch of his influences, but maybe by gleaming some of the most popular science fiction novels and films of the time we may find more…

Part 3: The Influences


In 1951, Isaac Asimov published his novel Foundation. Cobbled together from a series of short stories the plot revolves around an intellectual and technological dark age that is predicted by “psychohistorian” Hari Seldon; in response to this impending dumbing down of the human race, Seldon colonizes the planet Terminus with a population of geniuses, creating The Foundation, a group of people dedicated to creating the all encompassing encyclopedia that will store all human knowledge. Foundation is, at the basest level, a space opera. The majority of the novel takes place in nuclear powered (and sometimes coal powered) spaceships as Foundation members encounter others to trade for goods, or face various crises. One of the more important ideas within Foundation is the idea of rules of contact with other cultures. In science fiction from the pulp era (the 20s and 30s) the aliens (or hero) would land on the planet and loudly announce that they were from this planet, located here; in Foundation the characters have a set of rules defining their actions with other cultures. Chief among these is that the characters must not, under any circumstances, reveal the location of Terminus (the planet that the Foundation colonized). This is, in some aspects, similar to the prime directive of The United Federation of Planets in Star Trek.

In Star Trek Captain Kirk is not working for himself, he is a captain for The United Federation of Planets. The Federation is a group of different races and planets who make an alliance to protect themselves from outside threats, like The Klingon Empire, and share technology amongst themselves and other “warp civilizations” (a civilization which can travel faster than the speed of light). The Federation, like The Foundation has some very specific rules when their representatives are in contact with another group of people. The best example of this in Star Trek is The Federation’s Prime Directive. The Prime Directive, as defined in the episode “Bread and Circuses” is: “No identification of self or mission. No interference with the social development of said planet. No references to space or the fact that there are other worlds or civilizations.” This means that for cultures without faster than light travel (i.e. us) The Federation will not interfere at all, even for the better. An interesting thing to point out is that in Foundation the cultures that they meet are only slightly less technologically advanced then they are meaning that if a citizen of the Foundation tells a group where they are located, they could easily come and find them; while in Star Trek it is common for the Enterprise crew to be talking to cavemen, or people with a technological equivalent of the near future of the 1960s, this means, as demonstrated in episodes such as the famous “Patterns of Force” (the “John Gill and the Nazis” episode) the prime directive has another purpose, to make sure that the planet is not taken over by a Federation citizen.

The Day the Earth Stood Still:

The Day the Earth Stood Still was released in 1951. This film is a sub-genre of speculative fiction called “parable sci-fi,” meaning that there is a blatant message behind the film. This amazing film is about an extraterrestrial that comes to Earth with a message. However, before he can tell the general populace he is shot and put into a hospital. He later escapes, and tells the world his message: if Earth begins to use atomic weaponry off planet, they will be destroyed. This film is considerably darker than other early sci-fi films, it deals with themes of xenophobia, isolationism, and cold war politics. It was one of the very first intelligent sci-fi films from the fifties, while previous sci-fi films you’d see in theaters were things like Radar Men from the Moon, where a group of people in jet packs fight moon men. This feature opened up the door to make intelligent sci-fi films that were successful not only in creating a meaningful intelligent piece, but that it will also do well in the box office.

The plot of the film became a very popular science fiction trope. It is used constantly in novels, other films, and of course television. Almost every anthology series past 1951 has at least one episode with a similar plot to The Day the Earth Stood Still. The Twilight Zone is no exception. The episode “The Gift” drew heavily from this movie. ‘The Gift” is a story about a humanoid alien that comes to a small town in Mexico. All of the other villagers are distrustful of him, except a young boy. He gives the young boy a gift. The villagers eventually kill the alien and the gift is broken, a doctor picks up the gift and reads the inscription on it. It says: “Greetings to the people of Earth: We come in peace. We bring you this gift. The following chemical formula is a vaccine against all forms of cancer.”

Apart from being thematically influential, the aesthetics of The Day the Earth Stood Still were influential as well. The sequence in which Klaatu (the alien) lands his ship, and is surrounded by the army has been recreated countless times in film and television.

Fahrenheit 451:

In 1951 Ray Bradbury published his famous dystopian novel Fahrenheit 451. Before being collected as a novel in 1953, Fahrenheit 451 was serialized in several different magazines, including playboy in 1954. It is considered today to be one of the finest novels of its genre. The plot revolves around the concept that books are banned and that a group of people, the firemen, are charged with the task of burning, not only books, but whole buildings that are known to house books. During the course of the novel one of the firemen, Guy Montag, eventually gets swept up into the underbelly of the book reading society and learns the importance of books.

Fahrenheit 451 is important because of its original depiction of a totalitarian society in which books are banned. This plot device has been sued several times in various anthology series, most notably of which is the episode “The Obsolete Man” in The Twilight Zone. “The Obsolete Man” is about a librarian whom has been deemed obsolete, due to the fact that literacy has become illegal.

There are several big differences between these two stories, chief among them are the protagonists. In “The Obsolete Man” the main character is quite and bookish, who cherishes each book as if they were his own children; while Guy Montag from Fahrenheit 451 is a fireman that burns books on a regular basis. The main character from The Twilight Zone episode is much more likely to rebel against the system (that is if books are banned); while Guy Montag from Fahrenheit 451 is much less likely to rebel, since he is the one who is burning the books. This is actually the case, until a series of events (his wife’s attempted suicide, the meeting of a young revolutionary girl, and actually reading a part of a book) leads him onto the path of rebellion against the system. Another interesting difference between these two works is the use of trials. In Fahrenheit 451 people run amok. There are constantly car crashes, murders, and attempted suicides. It seems that there is in fact no law but the fact that books are illegal. There isn’t once a scene in which a judge condemns someone, possibly alluding to the fact that those in power control every aspect of the society, and are in a minuscule minority. While “The Obsolete Man” actually starts with a trial that involves a considerable amount of government officials, suggesting that the society in “The Obsolete Man” is in fact highly structured, with many rules and regulations.

The Day of the Triffids:

The Day of the Triffids may at first seem a pulpy, trashy, exploitative little novel about killer plants and blind people, but people seem to forget that it was one of the forerunners of the post-apocalyptic story in science fiction. The novel deals with a series of events that essentially cause a majority of the human race to go blind and then be almost driven to extinction by walking, possibly sentient plant monsters that a news caster at one point calls “vegetables on vacation” (Wyndham, 27). So… why is this book influential? This book is suspension of belief. Once you get through all of the, quite frankly, un-intelligible explanations of the working of a Triffid, this novel actually has something to say about environmentalism and human interactions.  This kind of idiot savant story is seen all over in classic Star Trek.

A classic example of an episode of Star Trek with a stupid sounding plot but an intelligent presentation is “The Omega Glory.” While on a routine mission, the crew of the Enterprise found a derelict craft: the Exeter. They track it’s path and find that the remaining crew member has been stranded on a planet with that, as it turns out, had the exact same history of Earth yet instead of surviving the cold war, they end up killing a majority of the population through biological warfare. The plot, obviously, sounds like a bad pulp story from the 40s, yet, like the famous Day of the Triffids it manages to keep a semblance of intelligence about it, all the while giving the viewer a commentary on cold war politics. Day of the Triffids showed a suspension of belief on the part of the audiences of this time period leading to some of the more outlandish episodes of shows like The Twilight Zone and Star Trek.

Forbidden Planet:

Forbidden Planet is a 1956 sci-fi film, the first of several to showcase the famous Robby the Robot character, as well as the C-57D. The film itself is a retelling of William Shakespeare’s play The Tempest. The plot revolves around a spaceship crew that land on a planet to check on the colonists. The crew discovers that only the linguist, Dr. Morbius, his daughter, Altaira, and their servant robot, Robby, have survived. Invisible monster attacks, the discovery of a dead civilization and robot shenanigans ensue. Forbidden Planet was a major groundbreaker in terms of sci-fi visual aesthetics, the look of the alien technology and the interesting costumes and props, scoring, this film had the first ever all electronic score, and special effects, one of the most elaborate shots in the movie is the invisible beast stepping on and crushing the stairs of the spaceship.

Forbidden Planet had numerous influences on Star Trek the biggest among these are the characters of James T. Kirk and Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy. Two of the films main characters are Commander John J. Adams; the captain of the spaceship, played by Leslie Neilson, and the ship’s doctor, Lt. “Doc” Ostrow played by Warren Stevens. The similarities between the four characters are quite amazing. Both Kirk and Adams are womanizers, although Adams doesn’t go for the scientist’s daughter at first. Like Kirk, Adams is on friendly terms with his crew, talking jovially with them. Like Star Trek the commander and doctor have a familiarity with each other and come across as old friends. Star Trek can be seen as a kind of series version of Forbidden Planet it has the two shows have the same theme, naval adventures in space.

Another interesting sci-fi trope that Forbidden Planet’s plot heavily relies on is the idea of the technologically advanced dead race. Soon after reaching the planet Dr. Morbius discovers the underground ruins of an ancient society named the Krell. The Krell were an amazingly advanced race that mysteriously disappeared hundreds of thousands of years before the colonists landed on the planet. Long story cut short, the activation of Krell technology causes Morbius’ id to be released and kill all of the colonists. This trope can be seen all over in star trek. The best example of this is in the episode “What Are Little Girls Made Of?”

This episode, like Forbidden Planet has a lot to do with dead races, and the repercussions of using technology we don’t fully understand. In this episode, a scientist with a servant robot, discover an ancient alien technology that has the ability to create a robotic copy of any one they want. Of course, being an action driven show, the scientist was planning on taking over the galaxy by replacing the admiralty of the Federation of Planets with robots.

However, Forbidden Planet didn’t just influence Star Trek it also had quite an influence on The Twilight Zone. However, unlike Star Trek most of the influences of Forbidden Planet in The Twilight Zone are aesthetic rather than conceptual. There are quite a few episodes of The Twilight Zone that re-use the famous C-57D spaceship from Forbidden Planet. Most of these episodes also tend to be more intellectual than the average space fairing episodes of other sci-fi anthology series (like The Outer Limits). By far the most well known of these space oriented episodes of The Twilight Zone is the classic “Death Ship” This episode is about a group of astronauts who make an emergency landing on an abandoned asteroid, only to find an exact copy of their ship with dead copies of them inside. This episode is interesting because, unlike other Twilight Zone episodes about space travel, this episode is very paranoia driven.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers:

Invasion of the Body Snatchers is one of the finest examples of Cold War paranoia in film. The film is about a group of people who notice that some of the population of the small town they are in are acting funny. It soon becomes apparent that a large portion of the populace have been killed and replaced by aliens that look and sound exactly like them. This film was the creator of the pod people trope that is used constantly in science fiction TV. What could be seen as a modern example of the pod people trope are the humanoid Cylons from the re-make of Battlestar Galactica. Another interesting point about this film is the fact that it messes around with the viewer’s expectations. During this time period most of the science fiction films had happy just look at such classic fifties sci-fi movies like Godzilla and Them! where the good guys kill the monster just before he destroys the city, this film leaves the audience shaken because the good guys didn’t win. The only human left in the town, the doctor, runs to Los Angeles, and ends up screaming at the people in the streets trying to warn them of the pod people, he then looks directly into the camera and yells “you’re next!”

This kind of self-reflexivity has been around since the very beginnings of film, yet The Twilight Zone took this to a whole new level. Each week, Rod Serling, the creator of The Twilight Zone, would actually address the audience, telling them that they were no longer watching TV but that they aretraveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind; a journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination.” Another example of this kind of self-reflexivity in an episode would be the famous “To Serve Man.” The episode takes place in a series of flashbacks narrated by the character Michael Chambers, a decoder for the government, whom is being held against his will on an alien spaceship. At the end of the episode Chambers looks directly into the camera and asks the audience: “How about you? Are you still on Earth, or on the ship with me? Really doesn’t make very much difference, because sooner or later, we’ll all of us be on the menu…”

Another major theme of Invasion of the Body Snatchers is trust and paranoia. This theme popped up a lot in Cold War sci-fi, and The Twilight Zone was no exception. One of the key paranoia driven episodes is the fantastic “The Monsters are Due on Maple Street.” This episode is about a group of people who think that one of their neighbors may be an alien, and in control of a city wide black out. The episode plays with the expectations of the viewer, shifting from something that may be sinister, such as a man in the shadow, only to reveal it to be mundane, one of the neighbors returning from the other side of town. Like Invasion of the Body Snatchers this episode too ends in a downer. It turns out that the aliens were up on a hill top watching all of these events like observing amoebas performing mitosis.

The Man in the High Castle:

The Man in the High Castle is one Philip K. Dick’s best known novels. The novel is a piece of speculative fiction asking the question “what would our culture be like if we lost World War II?” This kind of speculative fiction is called “alternate history.” Over the years since the introduction of this work alternate history has had a kind of cult following in literature. It is interesting to note however that it is not as prevalent in television or film. There are, of course, a few exceptions to this. Such examples can be seen mostly in the time travel episodes of The Twilight Zone or Star Trek, or some episodes of Star Trek were they visit planets that are in the same stage of development as “old time Earth.”

Among these alternate history episodes of Star Trek is the episode “The City on the Edge of Forever.” In this episode Dr. McCoy, while accidently overdosed on a drug and temporarily insane, jumps through a time portal to 1930s earth. There he accidently messes with the time space continuum by saving the life of a woman as she is about to be hit by a car. The result is that the Nazis won WWII and that the space program was never started. It is also interesting that this episode, originally aired in 1967, has some striking similarities to The Man in the High Castle. Apart from the obvious fact that they are both about the Nazis winning World War II, they both deal with concepts of time travel, parallel time lines, and other dimensions.

Now, the more Star Trek savvy may ask the question “but what about the gangster planet episode? Isn’t that an alternate history story?” The episode “A Piece of the Action,” the famous “gangster planet” of episode, is where the Enterprise crew beam down to discover that the planet is modeled after 1930s Chicago gangsters. This is not considered alternate history for several reasons, chief among them is that the story takes place on another planet, and the audience has no prior knowledge of that planet’s history. Another problem with calling it alternate history is the fact that the planet is in its gangster state during the “current” time of the Star Trek universe. This means, that for those characters on the Enterprise it was the present. Therefore, the episode “A Piece of the Action” is not an alternate history story.


Released in 1965 Frank Herbert’s novel Dune is rife with political messages of all kinds: there are pro-drug sentiments, anti-drug sentiments, sections dealing with race relations, environmentalism, industry, system of government, almost anything you can imagine is at least discussed once in this book. The plot boils down to this: a duke is granted a planet that is the only home to the most important thing in the universe, the emperor and a baron secretly plot against him, he is killed, his son is exiled to the desert where he becomes the native’s messiah, he returns and kicks the emperor and baron off of the planet, in the process becoming emperor himself.

This book is immensely influential. It not only deals with all of the above mentioned ideas, it wraps them all up into a rousing adventure story that is only 512 pages long. The story is one of the first to introduce several popular science fiction tropes that are used in many different novels and television series. One of the most famous of these tropes is that of the human computer. In Dune mythology robots once ruled humans, humans rebelled but found that humanity didn’t have the cognitive capacity to govern an empire light years in diameter, so they took it upon themselves to create humans with enormous IQs to help normal people rule the universe. These Mentats, as they are called, can be seen as precursors to Star Trek’s famous Vulcans. The Mentats and Vulcans share some similarities, yet have some key differences as well. One of the key similarities between a Mentat and a Vulcan is their difference in physical appearance to humans. The Vulcan can be spotted by its pointed ears and thin, raised eyebrows; Mentats are known for their lips stained purple by the sapho juice. Both Mentats and Vulcans are considered to be logical, have amazing reasoning abilities, and downplay their emotions. However, that is where the similarities end. The differences between Vulcans and Mentats are few, but they are extremely important in separating these two fictional creations. First and foremost among these differences is that Mentats are human beings. Vulcans are an entirely different species with a completely different internal body structure (even their blood is a different color!).

Overall Dune had an important role in shaping not only future science fiction novels, but had a large influence when creating one of Star Trek’s most beloved characters, Mr. Spock.

Part 4: The End of an Age

The Twilight Zone:

On June 19th, 1964 the final episode of The Twilight Zone, “The Bewitchin’ Pool,” aired. One of the main reasons why the show was cancelled was because it was coming over budget, and the ratings weren’t high enough to permit the costs of making the show. Rod Serling went on to write the screenplay for the classic science film Planet of the Apes. In 1969 Rod Serling returned to the world of supernatural television with his series Night Gallery although not as popular as The Twilight Zone the series has continued to be a cult hit among select circles. Other producers have tried several times in the past to continue The Twilight Zone legacy by making new Twilight Zone episodes. The most notable attempt ran for three seasons spread out between 1985 and 1989. However, the show suffered from bad scripting and low Nielsen ratings, and so was cancelled. Today the original episodes of The Twilight Zone are still shown in syndication throughout the country and are readily available on DVD.

Star Trek:

From the very beginning Star Trek was in danger of being cancelled. The show had low ratings starting towards the middle of season 1. However, thanks to the producers the show managed to survive for another two seasons, until its eventual cancellation. The quality of episodes from season three were dramatically worse than from the first season. With episodes like the infamous “Spock’s Brain” and “Turnabout Intruder” it was apparent that Star Trek was in its very ugly death throes. However, all was not lost! The show had an amazingly large group following that began a letter writing campaign to the executives of NBC. Unlike The Twilight Zone and its several failed attempts at resurrection, Star Trek survived through syndication and then revival in the 1980s through the popular movies and spin off series Star Trek: The Next Generation. Like The Twilight Zone, Star Trek has become a staple for syndicated television, being shown all over on small TV stations.

Part 5: Lasting Impressions

Today science fiction is one of the most popular genres on TV. With hit shows like Lost and the recently ended “re-imagining” of Battlestar Galactica it is hard to imagine when science fiction television was not ground breaking and thought provoking material. Star Trek and The Twilight Zone, themselves influenced by their predecessors in film and literature, are now some of the major influences of science fiction television.



  • Wyndham, John. The Day of the Triffids. Modern Library Paperback ed. New York, NY: Random House, 1951. Print.

An interesting post apocalyptic story. Gives good examples of the improbable plot, yet it still has something to say politically

  • Asimov, Isaac. Foundation. New York, NY: Bantam Books, 1951. Print.

Asimov’s masterpiece of science fiction. This book has great examples of space opera, as well as rules of contacting other space                       faring cultures

  • Bradbury, Ray. Fahrenheit 451. New York, NY: Del Rey, 1953.Print.

Bradbury’s novel about a dystopian future where books are banned. Has great descriptions of mechanical objects and an interesting                       depiction of a totalitarian society.

  • Dick, Philip K. The Man in the High Castle. New York, NY: Vintage Books, 1962. Print.

A classic example of an alternate history story. Has a premise that has been used several times over.

  • Herbert, Frank. Dune. New York, NY: Ace, 1965. Print.

Good combination of science fiction action and political message.

  • Baughman, James L. Same Time, Same Station. Baltimore, MD: John Hopkins University Press, 2007. Print.

History of early TV.


  • Derleth, August. “Contemporary Science Fiction.” College English 13.4 (1952):187-194. Web. 11/08/09. <>.

Vintage essay on contemporary Science Fiction. Good for brainstorming ideas.

  • Sisario, Peter. “A Study of the Allusions in Bradbury’s “Fahrenheit 451″.” English Journal 59.2 (1970): 201-212. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

An interpretation of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.

  • Kafka, Janet. “Why Science Fiction?.” English Journal 64.5 (1975): 46-53. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

Interesting essay on the politics of science fiction.

  • Parish, Margaret. “Pick of the Paperbacks: Science Fiction.” English Journal 67.2 (1978): 117-119. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

Another essay to help develop which novels were important during the golden age of science fiction television.

  • Hodgens, Richard. “A Brief, Tragical History of the Science Fiction Film.” Film Quarterly 13.2 (1959): 30-39. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

An essay on the history of the science fiction film up ‘til 1959. Interesting source for important sci-fi films.

  • Asimov, Isaac. “The By-Product of Science Fiction.” AIBS Bulletin 7.1 (1957): 25-27. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

Asimov discusses the intelligence of science fiction literature.

  • de Camp, L. Sprauge. “Looking Backward at Science Fiction.” Science 152.3724 (1966): 920-921. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

Looking back at what some may or may not call science fiction.

  • Mann, Katrina. “”You’re Next!”: Postwar Hegemony Besieged in “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”.” Cinema Journal 44.1 (2004): 49-68. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

An interesting interpretation of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

  • Zigo, Diane, and Michael T. Moore. “Science Fiction: Serious Reading, Critical Reading.” English Journal 94.2 (2004):85-90. Web. 08 Nov 2009. <>.

Another essay on the validity of science fiction as literature.


  • “Bread and Circuses.” Star Trek. NBC: KING, Seattle, WA, 15 MAR 1968. Television.

Gives a good example of Star Trek‘s prime directive.

  • “The Omega Glory.” Star Trek. NBC: KING, Seattle, WA, 01 MAR 1968. Television.

A good example of a preposterous plot, but intelligent commentary.

  • “What Are Little Girls Made Of?.” Star Trek. NBC: KING, Seattle, WA, 10 OCT 1966. Television.

An example of the long dead alien technology trope

  • “The City on the Edge of Forever.” Star Trek. NBC: KING, Seattle, WA, 06 APR 1967. Television.

An example of an alternate history story

  • “A Piece of the Action.” Star Trek. NBC: KING, Seattle, WA, 12 JAN 1968. Television.

An example of what appears to be an alternate history story.

  • “The Gift.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA,27 APR 1962. Television.

Has a plot similar to The Day the Earth Stood Still.

  • “The Obsolete Man.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA, 02 JUN 1961. Television.

Shows a society similar to that displayed in Fahrenheit 451.

  • “Death Ship.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA, 07 FEB 1963. Television.

A Twilight Zone example of Forbidden Planet’s C-57D spaceship.

  • “To Serve Man.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA, 02 MAR 1962. Television.

An example of a character breaking the 4th wall.

  • “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA, 04 MAR 1960. Television.

An example of paranoia in The Twilight Zone.

  • “The Bewitchin’ Pool.” The Twilight Zone. CBS: KIRO, Seattle, WA, 19 JUN 1964. Television.

The last episode of The Twilight Zone.


  • Wise, Robert, Dir. The Day the Earth Stood Still. Dir. Robert Wise.  Perf. Rennie, Michael. 20th Century Fox: 1951, DVD.

A very popular sci-fi film.

  • Hoffman, Herman, Dir. Forbidden Planet. Dir. Herman Hoffman. Perf. The Robot, Robby. Warner Brothers: 1956, DVD.

Shares many similarities with Star Trek.

  • Siegel, Don, Dir. Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Dir. Don Siegel.” Perf. McCarthy, Kevin. Artisan: 1956, DVD.

Classic paranoia film.


Welcome to my blog about the influences on such classic science fiction TV shows as Star Trek and The Twilight Zone. This blog will include, when completed: an annotated bibliography, my fifteen page research paper, and a bunch of short videos and still images from science fiction history!

This blog is part of the class Ready Camera One.

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