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Thread: Has Steam Punk been hijacked?

  1. #1
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    Has Steam Punk been hijacked?

    Has Steam Punk been hijacked? I never knew until recently that the genre or sub-genre was still around....I thought it was a '90's thing....1890's I guess. Don't know if I'm sad about it or if I care much. It is stylish but so is Goth. I wonder if I could create a genre that would catch on? I love pop-culture....sorta. I like them leather Roy Batty jackets....maybe I could start a band that would spawn a genre....yeah "The Roy Battys"....hey kids lookin' for a cool band name....remember BBP....;-)

    I guess if people are having fun with something it isn't a bad thing....it is people using their imaginations and being creative...certainly beats sitting on the couch all day watching SciFi....I'm just jealous because I'm too self-conscious to ever consider dressing-up in a Pith helmet and brass goggles or what-have-you.
    Last edited by banquo's_bumble_puppy; 2011-Nov-14 at 06:54 PM. Reason: to add some more brain rot

  2. #2
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    Hijacked? What on Earth do you mean? If you mean, has it as a genre sold out, I don't think that's possible unless a part of the genre is rejecting capitalism and the mainstream. Yes, you can buy steampunk patterns from Simplicity (and when we figure out how to adapt that jacket around my scoliosis, I am going to have a fabulous outfit!), and yes, you can buy cheap steampunk jewelry at Fuego, but so what?
    _____________________________________________
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    Just get to a decent Con to see hundreds of people dressed in wild, wonderful costume and having what certainly appears to be a great time.

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    Did you see the woman with the train hat at Norwescon last year?
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  6. #6
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    "steampunk" is one of those phrases that i'm absolutely sick of seeing.. it's all over teh internets..

  7. #7
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    I'm burned out on it, too. It was/is a good idea, but it became too popular. The fun of these kinds of things is their novelty*. When anyone spray paints a Nerf gun bronze, the magic is gone.


    *If absolutely anyone had the stones and skill to use a meteor hammer that's on fire, it's not really that cool, is it?

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    It did become a runaway hit and just like everything that used to be niche and then turned popular, it's lame now according to the early adopters and True Steampunks. There are many examples of this from the days of yore, not the least of which is punk rock.

    My chief problem with steampunk is that it's used as a label/marketing gimmick that gets slapped willy-nilly on anything pseudoVictorian basically, without even the most tenuous connection to either "steam" or "punk". Thus the term gets diluted to the point where it is entirely meaningless. And it wasn't very easy to tell what the "punk" bit stood for from the get go, never mind now.
    The dog, the dog, he's at it again!

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    The problem with Steampunk is that it does't even make sense in its original setting Too much suspension of disbelief required to make the principle work for me.

    Now if somebody could give a good update to cyberpunk... and I don't mean the new Shadowrun edition...


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    There never was punk in steampunk, or any of the other -punks besides cyberpunk and punk rock.

    It's pseudo-Victorian technological-romanticism. It can be plausibly realistic alternate history like The Difference Engine, it can be soft-SF with impossible technology (Steamboy), and it can be fantasy (Howl's Moving Castle).

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    Quote Originally Posted by SkepticJ View Post
    There never was punk in steampunk, or any of the other -punks besides cyberpunk and punk rock.

    It's pseudo-Victorian technological-romanticism. It can be plausibly realistic alternate history like The Difference Engine, it can be soft-SF with impossible technology (Steamboy), and it can be fantasy (Howl's Moving Castle).
    where does the giant mechanical spider in that wonderful Will Smith movie "The Wild, Wild West" fit in?

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    I had an idea for a steampunk setting that also had nuclear power.
    After all, nuclear power is largely steam power, no?
    Basically, in the setting natural uranium had enough uranium-235 that it could used without enrichment in a light water reactor.
    Eventually Orion style spaceships were invented and used to transport undesirables to Mars, which had life and a thick enough atmosphere virtue of being much more massive for its size.
    Still very much a desert though, mostly.
    Then word came out that the reason it had so much mass was because of its larger concentration of heavy metals, like gold and uranium.
    Basically it was an excuse to have an Old West style setting on Mars.

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    Mr. Cowperthwaite, the main character in Paul DiFilippo's novella Victoria, had been injured in a devastating accident involving a huge nuclear powered train...
    The dog, the dog, he's at it again!

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    Quote Originally Posted by novaderrik View Post
    where does the giant mechanical spider in that wonderful Will Smith movie "The Wild, Wild West" fit in?
    Soft-SF with impossible technology.
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    A producer's weird fixation; listen to Kevin Smith talk about Superman.
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    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  16. #16
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    The giant mechanical spider would probably be classified under some subset of Weird West. Too much fine splitting going on, anyhow.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillianren View Post
    A producer's weird fixation; listen to Kevin Smith talk about Superman.
    i did love how Kevin Smith talked about the giant spider.. see if i can remember how it went..
    i think he was supposed to include it in the Superman script he was in the process of writing because the producer wanted a big mechanical spider for the hero to fight, but that movie never got made and it wound up in the Wild Wild West movie that the producer made a year or so later..

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    Quote Originally Posted by novaderrik View Post
    i did love how Kevin Smith talked about the giant spider.. see if i can remember how it went..
    i think he was supposed to include it in the Superman script he was in the process of writing because the producer wanted a big mechanical spider for the hero to fight, but that movie never got made and it wound up in the Wild Wild West movie that the producer made a year or so later..
    The same producer also said he didn't want Superman to wear tights, a cape, or to be seen flying-- in other words he wanted his own superhero who wasn't Superman except in name.

    Of course, after the latest DC reboot, he gets some of his wish...
    I'm a cynical optimist. I think the only way out is through, but once we get through it'll be better. Very different, but better. Howard Tayler

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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    The same producer also said he didn't want Superman to wear tights, a cape, or to be seen flying-- in other words he wanted his own superhero who wasn't Superman except in name.

    Of course, after the latest DC reboot, he gets some of his wish...
    He also wanted an army at the Fortress of Solitude, didn't he?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tnjrp View Post
    Mr. Cowperthwaite, the main character in Paul DiFilippo's novella Victoria, had been injured in a devastating accident involving a huge nuclear powered train...
    Ha!
    And those posters said I couldn't have nuclear power in steampunk!
    They called me mad!
    Well, I'll show them, I'll show them all!

  21. #21
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    Is there an economics model that could be used to see the ability for a trend to turn into a commodity?
    F of cool = ((how many of your friends have it+ how much you are exposed to it)/friends)
    F of necessity = ( well being / effort)

    So, If you wore your brass goggles to the lab and all of your coworkers had plastic goggles, F cool =( cool goggles/ co-workers) and F necessity =( + well being / easy)
    As you can see by this simple equation, if you worked in a lab and wore your sweet brass goggles it would contribute to your well being and be easy to do.
    But conversely, if you worked in an office, everyone would look at you funny.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stubby Boardman View Post
    He also wanted an army at the Fortress of Solitude, didn't he?
    I believe so. Every once in a while, I see movies which are so changed from the original source material that I wonder why they ever bothered getting the licensing. And then I remember name recognition and wonder instead how much word-of-mouth sank the movie after its initial release.
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by ravens_cry View Post
    I had an idea for a steampunk setting that also had nuclear power.
    After all, nuclear power is largely steam power, no?
    Basically, in the setting natural uranium had enough uranium-235 that it could used without enrichment in a light water reactor.
    Eventually Orion style spaceships were invented and used to transport undesirables to Mars, which had life and a thick enough atmosphere virtue of being much more massive for its size.
    Still very much a desert though, mostly.
    Then word came out that the reason it had so much mass was because of its larger concentration of heavy metals, like gold and uranium.
    Basically it was an excuse to have an Old West style setting on Mars.
    Atomic Punk - the next big thing?

    I imagine a retro-futurist world where the 50s dream of atomic-powered everything is a reality, along with all the environmental carelessness and disregard for safety of the industrial revolution. Where the weather report tells you today's rad levels and discarded nuclear reactors lie rusting in junk heaps. You know, sorta like the actual city of Murmansk, Russia.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Scriitor View Post
    Atomic Punk - the next big thing?

    I imagine a retro-futurist world where the 50s dream of atomic-powered everything is a reality, along with all the environmental carelessness and disregard for safety of the industrial revolution. Where the weather report tells you today's rad levels and discarded nuclear reactors lie rusting in junk heaps. You know, sorta like the actual city of Murmansk, Russia.
    Oh, Atompunk is a thing.

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    And here I thought I was being original!

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    If the stories you want to create are original, it doesn't matter if the setting is or not.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stubby Boardman View Post
    He also wanted an army at the Fortress of Solitude, didn't he?
    And didn't know who Kal-El is.
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  28. #28
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    Here are the pertinent (yet sordid) bitz of the Superman sidetrack for anyone who happens not to remember them any better than I did:
    http://www.killermovies.com/forums/f48/t540522.html

    ---

    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Oh, Atompunk is a thing.
    Yes. More on that subject.

    Dieselpunk may also touch on nuclear power issues although its proper remit is the interbellum years I think so many afficionados probably don't regard nuclear powered stuff as "kosher".
    The dog, the dog, he's at it again!

  29. #29
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    Atomic Punk sounds very awesome. It would cross-over with Steam Punk at times (since most nuclear reactors generate electricity by heating water into steam to turn a turbine), but you could also have electricity in the setting and give it that absurdly optimistic "Science!" '50s feel (like what you see in Portal 2 and Bioshock). Not to mention that there have been speculative designs for atomic-powered vehicles like cars (the Ford Nucleon).

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    So the true dichotomy of the story is;
    there is more power laying around than clean water and natural resources and they have to use nuclear reactors etc.
    to clean the water and create light for plants to grow.

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