S00E03. The Collapsium

Before the Future Came podcast art with a painting of a space station interior in the background that evokes a starburst
Before the Future Came
S00E03. The Collapsium

Content Warnings: discussion of sex, torture, self-mutilation, misogyny, body horror, brief mention of suicide.

With the AMPTP still refusing to pay actors properly, we discuss The Collapsium by Wil McCarthy! We talk about hard and soft science fiction, wealth and labor, and the book’s strange use of appendices. We also touch on wizard battles, robotic freedom, princesses, cloning via teleportation, rivals in genre fiction, and Cherenkov light.

A bulbous orange rocketship with fins and prominent rivets in a basement. There is a single porthole visible and a hatch that would require a ladder to reach.
The rocketship from A Grand Day Out with Wallace and Gromit.
At the top of the first page of chapter nine, a pencil sketch shows Bruno on the outside of a tiny planet and Marlon on the inside of a hollow one, with a smiley face below.
Gregory’s sketches of the rivals’ respective homes.
The Advanced Test Reactor at Idaho National Laboratory uses plate type fuel in a clover leaf arrangement. The blue glow around the core is known as Cherenkov radiation. Courtesy of Idaho National Laboratory.
Cerenkov radiation at the Advanced Test Reactor at Idaho National Laboratory.

For images discussed in this episode, visit the episode page on our website.

Our next episode will cover “SCP-6001: Avalon,” by T Rutherford. Gregory has prepared a glossary for those unfamiliar with the SCP universe.

Please give us a five-star review on iTunes! You can send us asks at https://cohost.org/beforethefuturecame or hail us at onscreen@beforethefuture.space. Let us know what you think of the show!

Works Cited:

  • Asimov, I. (1951). Foundation. Gnome Press.
  • Barrie, J. M. (1911). Peter and Wendy. Hodder & Stoughton.
  • Borges, J. L. (1962). Labyrinths (Irby, J. E., Yates, D. A., Fein, J. M., de Onis, H., Palley, J., Fitts, D., and Murillo, L. A. [Trans.]). New Directions. (Original works published 1931-1960)
  • Bradbury, R. (1950). The Martian chronicles. Doubleday.
  • Corey, J. S. A. The expanse [Novel series]. Orbit books.
  • Elbow, P. (2009). The believing game, or methodological believing. Journal for The Assembly for Expanded Perspectives on Learning, 13.
  • Frayn, M. (2000). Copenhagen. Anchor.
  • Heinlein, R. A. (1970). I will fear no evil. G.P. Putnam’s Sons.
  • Le Guin, U. K. (1974). The dispossessed. Harper & Row.
  • Lee, S. & Ditko, S. (Creators). (1963-present). The amazing Spider-Man. Marvel Comics.
  • Lucas, G. (Director & Writer). (1977). Star wars [Film]. Lucasfilm Ltd.*
  • McCarthy, Wil. (2003). Hacking matter: Levitating chairs, quantum mirages, and the infinite weirdness of programmable atoms. Basic Books.
  • McCarthy, Wil. (2021). Rich man’s sky. Simon & Schuster.
  • Park, N. (Director & Writer) & Rushton, S. (Writer). (1989). A grand day out with Wallace and Gromit [Film]. National Film and Television School, Aardman Animations.
  • Roddenberry, G. (Creator). (1966-1969). Star trek [TV series]. Desilu Productions, Paramount Television.*
  • Rowling, J. K. (1997). Harry Potter and the philosopher’s stone. Bloomsbury.
  • Shakespeare, W. (1623). The tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice. Edward Blount, William & Isaac Jaggard.

* We believe this may be struck work under the current SAG-AFTRA strike guidelinesOur discussion of these works should not be considered promotion. Please do not view these titles on streaming services because of our citation.

Before the Future Came is edited by Lucy Arnold, transcribed by Melissa Avery-Weir, and webmavened by Gregory Avery-Weir.

Our theme is “Let’s Pretend” by Josh Woodward, available under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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