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[2019.3.26] Worlds Inside

It's pretty common at my work for people to play videos in the background while they work, which yes I know means I'm extremely lucky. It's allowed me to watch the entirety of [url=]Vox Machina and the [url=]Mighty Nein's adventures at my desk, which is no small feat considering each episode is four hours long. I've taken advantage of this, creating an entire media server for myself and my friends and family. I've watched dozens of movies and hundreds of TV episodes I wouldn't have gotten to see otherwise, what with me attempting (mostly failing) all sorts of side projects in the post-work hours.   Today I was watching [url=]Logan's Run, a pretty cheesy sci-fi movie that I wish I could write an entire article about by itself. The movie itself is fine, and does a nifty job of painting an intriguing world around some mostly one-dimensional characters. Today, it did the additional job of being the final attempt of the universe to point out to me one of my favorite fixations in sci-fi and fantasy. Though mostly sci-fi.   For the sake of time I won't get into what happens exactly in the movie, but the relevant bit here is that it takes place in a future where humanity has decided to deal with all our crises by housing us inside a few domes and controlling populations by killing anyone over the age of thirty. Logan, the protagonist, gets to a point where he decides to run from the city, thus the brilliant name.   Confession time: I didn't finish the movie. That's actually a relevant point here, because I'm about to make a very obvious prediction and we're all going to roll my eyes and say, "Well, of course" when it turns out tomorrow upon finishing the movie that I'm right.   Here's my prediction: when they get outside the city and get to the resisting outsiders–sorry, possible minor spoiler for a 40-something-year-old movie–Logan is going to decide to side with them. A part of this decision will probably include some slow pans across an idyllic terrain full of rivers, forests, and plenty of elevation change. Surpise, surprise, our hero has a change of heart.   So of course that's going to happen. But why was it obvious? Setting aside conventions of the hero's arc for a second, let's focus in, specifically on the inner world of civilization vs. the outer world of rural life (sometimes replaced with straight-up wilderness). I have always been obsessed with this comparison, but it wasn't until today that I fully realized why.   To quote myself: The City of Ember. The Concentration City by JG Ballard. Dark City. The World Inside. The City of Sigil. BLAME! Coruscant. Terra and Comorragh of WH40K. The City and the Stars. The Last Redoubt in W.H. Hodgeson's The Night Land. Ravnica.   Each one of these is a story or place that I went out of my way to explore, within the greater span of fantasy. Each one is a city of either immense/infinite size, or it's a city which has a clearly defined outer edge, beyond which is a darkness/wilderness which will eat you alive, or destroy you, or cause you to go mad, or etc. etc. etc. In each situation there is a comparison made between the world of the City and the world Beyond. In each situation the city feels like a living entity which vampirically draws from the inhabitants: all things serve the city.   Tomorrow (this time I promise. Again.) I'll tell you why. Damn my fucking 10pm self-imposed curfew.   Oh also! Tomorrow I'll upload my musings while on the plane. One of them is mostly shit. The other one is pretty good.   FL


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