Angel: A sci fi show?

USA Today has an article about their online viewer poll- -where they praise sci fi fans for voting to keep Angel on the air.

Did I miss the memo where vampires, demons, hell dimensions and magical beings became ‘scientific’?

I think it was in the same memo where aliens, time travel & warp speed were scientific.

Easy on the scientific, heavy on the fiction.

Who ever said science fiction was scientific? Isaac Asimov specifically commented that there was no science in science fiction.

If you mean vampires and demons can’t be science fictional, you’re wrong there. For instance:

Vampires. Many examples where a scientific explanation for vampirism was given. Michael Swanwick’s “Into the Drift,” had “scientific” vampires. My own “Curse of the Undead” (published in Vampires edited by Jane Yolen and Martin H. Greenberg) indicates the entire phenomenon has a scientific basis.

Demons. Ever hear of Childhood’s End by that fantasist Arthur C. Clarke.

Hell Dimensions. Too many to mention. Just call them “parallel words” or “alternate universes” and you get the same thing.

Magical beings. See Clarke’s Law.

Further science fiction and fantasy writers often cross back and forth between the genres, and readers do so, also. If you know anything about the genres, you know it’s silly to think there’s a big difference between the two.

Because most fantasy fans are also SF fans and vice versa; because many writers straddle the two genres; and because Barnes & Nobles keeps them both on the same shelf; and because USA today neded a classier euphemism for “geeks”.

While there are fictitious realms out there that do attempt to come up with scientific backgrounds for vampires and demons, and the maxim that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic is sometimes valid, neither argument applies to Angel.

And quite frankly, there’s a world of difference between a genre based on rules that change at a mystic whim, and a world created based on the extremes of current hard scientific thought. Slapping the ‘science’ label on a show like Angel is like relying on Tarot cards, herbalism, and crystals to cure an infection instead of going to a doctor.

I’ve always found it annoying that bookstores lump SF and fantasy together in one category. Occasionally an SF book will have fantasy elements or a fantasy book will have SF elements (or perhaps elementals), but really, they are two separate and distinct things. There is quite a bit of overlap among fans of the two genres, however.

Are you saying people are actually dying because they call Angel “science fiction”? Wow. :rolleyes:

And, sorry, but no fantasy world changes the rules based on a mystic whim. The rules of any fantasy world are just as rigorous and worked out as those in science fiction. If anything, a good fantasy world requires more thought and imagination, since you have to account for factors you can ignore in hard SF because they occur in real life.

You would deny that authors like Heinlein, Bradbury, Bester, LeGuin, or Asimov wrote science fiction, since they didn’t create worlds based on then-current hard scientific thought. Heinlein deliberately ignored the science of his time when it suited his purposes, as did Asimov (who cheerfully admitted that a “positronic brain” was just plain nonsense).

The fact is that “science fiction” is a form of fantasy, and even the hardest of hard SF will throw in elements known to contradict current science when necessary. Science fiction is foremost fiction, not science. If you want to read about science, stick with tech manuals.

Hard SF is only a small portion of science fiction. This sort of strict definition is mere anal retentiveness that completely ignores what’s actually happens in the genre.

No, not true. At most they are opposite ends of a continuum, in which there are particular “pure” examples at the far ends and very murky blends in the middle.

A better analogy would be a Venn diagram, in which many of the books would fall in the intersection of the “sf” and the “fantasy” circles (although it is ridiculous in the real world to limit the field to those two options).

Even better would be a big basket of socks: some white, some black, many colored, a few plaid, some checkered, some dingy gray, some white that got stained with red in the wash, a couple of stockings, a few knee high’s, a bunch of tights, some doctor dentons, tube socks, support hose, etc. etc. etc. That is what the field is really like.

The movie Blade also posited a scientic explanation for vampirism, albeit in passing.

I personally thought “Angel” was getting into sci-fi territory as well. The show’s underlying themes had simply grown too complex to be described as “horror.”