The Time Machine‘s Cosmic Domino Theory
Just a few weeks ago I finally watched the 1960 movie version of The Time Machine, based on the H.G. Wells classic novel.
Sure, it was a little dated and the special effects — though cutting edge for the time — are almost silly now. But the story still has power. It resonates. Underneath it all, the movie (much as the book, I imagine) captures the author’s dismay with humanity, and yet simultaneously yearns for — and has the dreamer’s belief that — with just a little more inspiration, we as a people have the capacity to evolve so that we ultimately become more, well … humane.
That we embrace the wonder of what might be possible.
And then just a week later I watched an episode of The Big Bang Theory, where Leonard and the boys, through an eBay auction, bought the actual time machine prop from the movie The Time Machine! It was awesome.
They all geeked out over this massive prop in their apartment, and then Sheldon in particular had these creepy dreams about the underground-dwelling Morlocks coming to eat his flesh, as they would have in the movie.
This being The Big Bang Theory, of course, it was all played for broad, outrageous laughs. I loved every minute of it.
Both The Time Machine and the episode of The Big Bang Theory struck a particular chord with me. My own sci-fi novel Finders Keepers, is, at heart, about embracing the joys of life because, in one way or another, we are confronted with a particular notion: that time and space and dimension are so massive, intricate and confusing that one cosmic domino toppling over in the wrong direction can wreak havoc of astounding proportions.
And also that maybe just a little belief in the magic of the cosmos can open our hearts, minds and souls to the profound amazement that life has to offer.
Which, deep down, is why I love science fiction at its best. It challenges us to think about our place in the Universe while inviting us to participate in the most enthusiastic way possible.
Whether The Time Machine, The Big Bang Theory or even my own novel Finders Keepers, there’s a limitless canvas to explore, if only we’re ready for the ride.
Russ Colchamiro is the author of the humorous science fiction novel Finders Keepers, published by 3 Finger Prints (www.richkoslowski.com). He is now finishing his second novel, Crossline. He lives in Queens, NY, with his wife, Liz, his twin babies Nate and Abby, and their gregarious dog Simon.
You can follow Russ on Facebook and Twitter @findkeepnovel, and visit him at www.russcolchamiro.com.
To read the Finders Keepers prologue, where he knocks down that first cosmic domino, click: http://bit.ly/9w5moZ
And to watch a video interview of Russ at the 2010 NY Comic-Con, where he launched Finders Keepers, visit: http://bit.ly/bfA7oL