Thursday, November 20, 2008

Astronaut Theology: Let's Play a Game

I'm always looking for ways to be The Secret Sun more exciting and interactive. One of the ideas I came up with is "The Allegory Game." The point of this game is to look at a particular sequence in a film and see if in fact it's actually an allegory of something else, something not part of the external narrative. 

So let's look at 2001: A Space Odyssey, a film which has everything to do with what we've been looking at in the past few weeks -- as we will see in the very near future. 

So is this scene really about human evolution? Is it really about apes encountering alien technology way back in prehistory, which inspires them to use tools, which in turn eventually leads to the modern space program? 

Or is this an allegory of a more recent time, another time when people were wasting time arguing over useless plots of land? 

Is this an allegory of a more recent encounter with alien technology, an encounter that may well have resulted in the overnight development of advanced electronics and the like? 

An event which some believe instantly revolutionized human communications and gave birth to a space program that created standing human colonies in space? 

Maybe a more recent encounter, also somewhere in the desert, similar to what we see here? And would that have anything to do with the fact that most of the film- and certainly the sequence immediately after "The Dawn of Man" - is explicitly about an government coverup of an alien encounter? 

 That transition with the bone to the satellite does seem awfully sudden. And as we've looked at, the tech in 2001 still seems awfully contemporary. Disturbingly contemporary, even. So all of you at home and at work, play the Allegory Game with me! 

What are we really looking at here? 

 I'll leave you with this quote from Heywood Floyd from :
"Now, I'm sure you're all aware of the extremely grave potential for cultural shock and social disorientation contained in this present situation, if the facts were prematurely and suddenly made public without adequate preparation and conditioning."