Sunday, May 10, 2009

Alien Biology and Lovecraftiansim: Toward a new fictional model

Lovecraft rebuked once: Who has ever written a story where the werewolf was the center of the plot. Since then, many have starting with H Warner Munn.

We should now ask the query: Who has written a story showing that man is insignificant, and the universe in alien-centric. I think the closest approach I've seen was Gary Larson" "There's a Hair in My Dirt". Larson got Lovecraft in a unique way, and used it (much as Gahan Wilson does) to generate humor, perspective, and satire.

Sadly, with the collapse of true science fiction - or at least it's absorption into Tolkein-like fantasy situations, most fiction is now anthropomorphc again. The monsters are either anthropomorphic or personified in one way or another. Occassionally, alienness creeps in, and one of my all-time favorites was "Little Miss Muffett is Dead, Baby" (Huyck & Oliveri) which shows the ultimate angst and futility of a somewhat Mayberryesque world invaded by spider-creatures. The original concept of "Alien" was a nice tangent of Lovecraftiansim, but sequelitis diluted that approach.

We're suddenly of the precipice of having to come to final terms that life not only exists, but that it exists most everywhere, and we (people) are the weird exception and not the rule. Microorganisms rule, and all so-called higher life forms is as abberant and fleeting as carbon and iron is the fly-ash residue of stellar combustion and stars are the degenerate-children of dark matter and dark energy.

We are not only very alone in a dangerous and alien place, we are but a flicker of the candle in a maelstrom of time.

We have to get ready to get used to that, and anytime humans experience a crisis, fantasy-horror needs to help us grapple with it. The conundrum is how to write a story comprehensible to humans, be alien-centric, and simultaneously present a nihilistic viewpoint that would pallatable to readers of horror?

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