Let’s call it speculative fiction.
I’ve been thinking about it since the Sci Fi Channel changed it’s name to shed the connotations of geekery– SyFy (That’s right, it only makes a difference when said aloud).
“The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular”
Tim Brooks, TV historian
Yet it has been a great few years for science fiction, on television, in the cinema and in print media. That stereotypical view of geeky basement boys rolling dice and reading about aliens hasn’t been true for decades and still it persists in the mind of marketing departments…
You know what I think? I think it’s a double bluff… Here, have a look at this list of the top 40 grossing films to date, notice how many of them feature aliens, alternate universes, genetic experiments or comic book characters?
Sci-fi is mainstream, and clearly has been for a while.
So, why do the marketing boys and girls make such a fuss about making it accessible to a greater demographic?
Without wanting to sound like I’m filled with some sort of X-files-ridden paranoia, I’m going to suggest that it’s because they know that, numerous as we are, fans of science fiction like to feel as if they belong to some exclusive club – That we enjoy the connotations of geekery and that when it comes down to it, we get off, a little, on that smug, warm feeling that we are a little superior.
I suppose what I’m trying to say is, that despite rumours to the contrary, we are not alone.