October 17th, 2007

breaking bad


Spooks was great last night (I missed the first fifteen mins). Like sugoll I think it has been 24-d up a bit, in a good way. It's more plausible and massively less right wing than 24, but it has that sense of urgency and excitement. There was a certain countdown (actually count-up) going on, and I love that kind of thing. The London street scenes also reminded me of Children of Men. I'm so looking forward to this season now. Hermione Norris as Ros is a fantastic character. They haven't prettied her or youthed her or softened her.
breaking bad

What is now proved was once only imagined

Decades ago it was commonplace in lefty circles that there would be a massive war for oil in the Middle East in the 21st century. I think that one has barely started yet. We thought the UK was planning to stake a claim to a big slice of Antarctica, pivoted on the Falklands, and that was what that earlier war was really about. That's come true too now. We predicted Global Warming.

I'm not saying we got everything right. I don't think many predicted the total collapse of the Soviet system, while I think most anticipated some kind of nuclear skirmish (I think most would have guessed between India and Pakistan) which obviously hasn't materialised. So happy that hasn't happened.

The next tick-boxes are wars for water and a man-made plague of some kind. The biological weapons must exist somewhere. Something could go wrong, with some finite possibility. Can we stay lucky decade after decade? It seems impossible, and yet we have been lucky over and over again in relation to nuclear conflict.

Actually the luck we have had in avoiding nuclear disaster has made me think that perhaps Larry Niven was right - the human race is a lucky species - or that some sort of many worlds hypothesis is true - we are living in an odd branch of possibility where we keep on going, while in all the more probable worlds we wiped ourselves out years ago.

I suppose SF warps the brain.