it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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the schooner ship is sliding across the kitchen sink

...I'm working on my essay for a book on women in Doctor Who fandom, which necessitates discussing the difference between noir and clair sensibilities in fiction, and I just had a cross-fandom realization.

SSA Aaron Hotchner is a classic noir hero. He is the lone* ethical man, moving through a debased, indifferent, and sometimes actively malevolent world without moral compass, winning qualified and sometimes pyrrhic victories in the face of overwhelming odds.

Or as I keep saying, in Criminal Minds, prayers are answered. And you usually wish they hadn't been.

*except, this being CM, he's not alone. Bors has other knights to help out around the house.

Which now has me thinking about the classic debate about the perceived clash of sensibilities in science fiction versus fantasy, where fantasy is often portrayed by its critics are presenting a world that is more just and less arbitrary than reality, whereas science fiction is portrayed as being more ruthless and relentless in its portrayal of reality*. (I disagree with these assessments as generalities, though I cannot deny that in specific cases they are often correct.)

*with the implied or express value judgment that this is a better/more correct viewpoint, because Real Art Is Serious.

And now I'm thinking about Doctor Who (clair) and Sapphire & Steel (noir), and why (a) remains so insanely much more popular than (b). Because, well, after a while, (b) gets hard to take. 'Cause let's face it, killer feather pillows aren't any dumber than killer cannister vacs that can't climb stairs.
Tags: doctor who, geeks with guns, sapphire & steel

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