The martian – A proper sci-fi opera

The Martian from Andy Weir is one of the most astonishing sci-fi operas of this decade, is a proper hard science fiction book. Is a must for genre lovers.

 

«If the Oxygenator breaks down, I’ll suffocate. If the water reclaimer breaks down, I’ll die of thirst. If the Hab beaches, I’ll just kind of implode. If none of those things happen. I’ll eventually run out of food and starve to death»

A few weeks ago I was on Netflix and I saw that they added The Martian.

I love this movie and with the book, they form a comprehensive mix of explanations, visual effects, and scenes that at some level are better in the movie.

Andy Weir is that first author that had written a book in peer review.

This means that while he was publishing chapters of it on his blog, scientists from all over the world helped him on the creation of the book.

Setting the genre:

This is, I think, the best pure sci-fi opera ever done but let me explain this concept.

Everyone use to relate Star Wars, Stargate, Star Trek and all these kind of movies in the branch of science fiction but this is partially wrong.

If Star Wars is not at all a science fiction movie but a fantasy opera, then Star Trek is a nice mix between the genres as Stargate is.

They concentrate the main opera on the relationship and wars between different planet and civilizations.

But I guess we can speak better about this on another occasion.

The Martian is pure and absolute science with the limitation to it being part of a plot that needs a poetic license on his structure.

A new concept of a villain:

Another merit of The martian is to be a considerable part of the natural evolution of the genre of which it wants to be a part of.

In the 80s or 90s, the big villain was an alien fleet that wanted to destroy or conquer the world. In the last years, the big enemy to defeat is time.

Look for example in Interstellar when the planet Earth is on the edge end we are running for space colonization to save our own species, even if is not really necessary in that movie.

Now! Today more than before we are starting to project colonization on other planets and Mars is the closest. It is actually the first that we are going to colonize (hopefully soon)

So Andy Weir is punctual on writing about the remote possibility of someone lost in our space colonization.

Furthermore and ending this, is a praise to the mankind ability to solve a massive problem by doing this TOGETHER because this is the key to the salvation of Mark Watney.

He is strong and he wanted to survive so he used his knowledge to do that but on Earth, they cooperated to reach the great result of an even fictional, marvelous rescue.

The Martian plot:

Mark Watney is a NASA astronaut on the 3rd humanity mission on the red planet.

During a really unnatural storm, while all his crew gets safely on the ship, he gets stabbed and stays on the planet.

First thing: Open a daily journal for who will found your body.

Second: Food. They are American,  the author wrote the plot around the Thanksgiving day so a year and a half of potatoes.

Third: Heat, so let’s unbury a radioactive and mortal radioactive thing that, in the unlucky case of potential incident could kill a person.

The book is the journal of a man who gave everything for surviving. Mankind was never such united for saving a single person.

Is funny when it needs to be and sad when it needs.

Mark Watney itself:

Looking at scientific reviews of the movie, I found that the Mark behavior in his situation is not totally wrong.

Still alone, on the surface of an alien planet, he is able to take his situation with a considerable amount of lightness.

If you think, this is normal.

If we gonna send somebody in such mission, they must be able to face a huge amount of problem with a lot of cold blood.

And we are speaking of a man who grows potatoes on an alien planet with his own shit. No jokes here.

While watching the movie for the first time, I imagined how could be the moment of Ares 4 arriving on Mars with Mark waiting for them from a few days on the site.

Luckily everything took a different road because, after all this wasn’t a horror book.

This will easily become a cornerstone of science fiction or at least, in martian bibliography.

Reading this is a must so recover it.

-ldmarchesi


Related posts:
Martians – The origins of the myth

If you want to know something more about the RTG, the Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator:
Staying warm with a box of radiation on ‘The martian’

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