A brief history of the end of days
2015

 

An analysis of apocalyptic themes in popular culture
with a focus on individual subgenres


Part 1: A brief introduction

4/6/15
An overview of the use of apocalyptic settings/mindsets, and what may or may not qualify as such.

Potential Spoilers:

Brainlord, Chrono Trigger, Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, Final Fantasy 3, Halo, Mass Effect (series), Metal Gear Solid (series), Secret of Evermore, Secret of Mana

Part 2: Alienation

5/4/15
BHED examines and explores a subset of apocalypse scenarios related to, centered on, and caused by various types of aliens/otherworldly entities.

Potential Spoilers:

Beyond Good & Evil, Bioshock, Crysis (series), Chrono Trigger,  Dead Space (series), Destroy All Humans, Faster Than Light, Final Fantasy 2/4, 7, Half Life 2, Halo (series) Mass Effect (series), Red Faction: Armageddon, Red Faction: Guerilla, Starcraft (series), Secret of Mana, XCOM: Enemy Unknown/Enemy Within

Other:

Alien (series), The Andromeda Strain, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica, The Blob, Ender’s Game (series), Evolution, Independence Day, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Logan’s Run, Marvel Universe entities (Galactus, Annihilus and the Annihilation Conquest, Thanos), Moon, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Predator (series), The Puppetmasters, Star Trek/Deep Space 9, StarShip Troopers, The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, The Thing, Total Recall, Twilight Zone, Who Goes There?

Part 3: Science fiction prophecies

6/8/15
BHED continues looking into apocalypse propaganda as well as the grim versus hopeful future of humanity as portrayed in speculative fiction.

Potential spoilers:

Fallout (series)

Other:

12 Monkeys, Battlestar Galactica (1978 & 2004), Back to the Future, Death Machine, Ender's Game (series), Gattaca, Gravity, Interstellar, Jurassic Park, Moon, The Sirens of Titan, Star Trek, Star Wars, The Twilight Zone

Part 4: The firmament- The waters above

7/6/15
BHED focuses on the concept of the Rapture as contained in Christian mythology, history, and culture.

Potential Spoilers:

Apotheon, Bible games (NES), Dante’s Inferno, Darksiders (series), Dead Space (series), Devil May Cry (series), Diablo (series), Dragon Age (series), Elder Scrolls (series), Final Fantasy (series), God of War (series), Legend of Zelda (series) Left Behind (series), Red Dead Redemption/Undead Nightmare, Skyrim

Other: 

Bedazzled, Dante’s Inferno, Dragonlance (series), Dogma, Going Clear, Lucifer (comic series), Magic: The Gathering, The Prince, Zero Theorem

PART 5: tHE FIRMAMENT- The waters below

8/3/15

Rapture-rama flows on in BHED’s The Firmament Part 2, wherein we dive into the various facets of possible Christian/religious commentary made in Bioshock, and find ourselves drowning in the discussion.

Part 6: Paganism

9/14/15
BHED focuses its attention on games and other works that feature and/or include aspects of non-Western/Judeo-Christian religious elements. 

Potential Spoilers:

Final Fantasy (series), God of War (series), GTA (series), Sleeping Dogs, Skyrim, Too Human, True Crime: Streets of L.A., World of Warcraft

Other: Lucifer (comic series), Preacher (comic series)

special! Pocket 'pocalypses: Asteroid '15 Averted

9/29/15
BHED presents a newly christened spin-off segment, Pocket 'Pocalypses, wherein we take a range of apocalyptic predictions both past and present, and deconstruct/debunk them for your, and our own, amusement. 

In the first episode, we discuss the "Doomsday Asteroid September 2015", which, little to our surprise, failed to occur this past week, and thus we are safe again. For now.

Part 7: Technophobia 1

10/12/15
BHED moves into the modern age of apocalyptic fears. In part 1, we begin a discussion of the potential scenarios arising from the possibility of humanity's creation of artificial intelligence, and how it may calculate and subsequently enact our destruction. 

Guest Starring: Beth Morgan

Potential Spoilers:

Alien, Battlestar Galactica (series), Deus Ex, I, Robot (versions and adaptations), World Wide Web (novel series), Mass Effect (series), HER, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The Lawnmower Man, Terminator (series), Philip K. Dick (various works), Hyperion (series), Screamers, Neuromancer, Outer Limits, Blade Runner, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Trek (series), Shadowrun,  HUMANS, Wargames

part 8: technophobia 2

11/16/15
BHED continues our discussion of the potential scenarios arising from the possibility of humanity's creation of artificial intelligence. Can there be peace between machines and humanity? Will their be war or new civil rights movement? Was Clippy the harbinger of techno-doom? We ponder these questions and more in this coda to Technophobia Part 1.

part 9: technophobia 3

12/14/15
In the final part of our discussion on the coming technological apocalypse, we discuss that ever-present threat, nuclear war. Whether it's the WOPR going haywire or Major Kong taking his final ride to glory, the idea that nukes could rain from the sky and wipe out our entire species has been a touchstone of politics and pop culture for decades. So, please join us while we once again portend our own doom in this installment of A Brief History of the End of Days.

Special Guest: Beth Morgan

Intro Feat. "Crawl Out Through the Fallout" by Sheldon Allman

Potential Spoilers:
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, Fallout (series), When the Wind Blows, Testement, On the Beach (1959 and 2000 versions), Generation Swine Pt. 2, October Sky, Fail-Safe, Battlestar Galactica (new series), Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Star Trek (original series)

part 10: dear mr. fantasy

1/20/16
The crew continues to explore apocalyptic themes in popular culture, this time focusing on the fantasy video game genre.  Why are villains obsessed with destroying the world? How do you maintain tension while side quests pile up? Does the fall of Rome count as an apocalyptic event?

Note: This Brief History of the End of Days was originally intended to follow Part 6: Paganism

Potential spoilers:
Bastion, Chrono Trigger, Dark Souls, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Demon's Souls, Dragon Age: Origins, Dragon Age: Inquisition, The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, Fallout 3, Final Fantasy 3/6, Final Fantasy 7, Final Fantasy X, Galactus(Marvel), The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, Warcraft: Orcs & Humans, The Witcher 3

part 11: gothic horror

3/7/16
In the penultimate episode of A Brief History of the End of Days, The Lost Signals crew discusses vampires, werewolves and why they are not particularly apocalyptic.

Special Guest:
Beth Morgan

Referenced Works:
An American Werewolf in London, An American Werewolf in Paris,  Battlefield: Earth, Blade(series), Buffy the Vampire Hunter(series), Daybreakers, Dr, Zhivago,  Dracula, Fearless Vampire Hunters, The Howling, The Hunger, I Am Legend, In the Company of Wolves, The Last Man on Earth, Little Red Riding Hood, Omega Man, The Path(VG), Penny Dreadful, Salem's Lot, The Strain, 30 Days of Night, True Blood,  Twilight, Underworld, Vampire Hunter D, Warm Bodies, The Witcher(VG series)

part 12: zombies

4/4/16
In the finale of A Brief History of the End of Days, the gang discusses a topic that just won't die: zombies

Special guest: Beth Morgan

Referenced Work:
28 Days Later, 28 Weeks Later, The Beyond, Cockneys vs Zombies, Day by Day Armageddon, Dawn of the Dead (1978 and 2004), Day of the Dead, The Dead, The Dead 2, Dead Alive, Dead Island, Dead Rising(games and film), Demons, Diary of the Dead, Dying Light, Evil Dead(series), Fallout(series), Fear the Walking Dead, Fido, Game of Thrones, Gates of Hell, Land of the Dead, Night of the Living Dead,  Planet Terror, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Return of the Living Dead, Resident Evil(series), Rock and Roll Zombies, Serpent and the Rainbow, Shaun of the Dead, Toe Tags, Walking Dead, Warm Bodies, White Zombie, World War Z(book and film), Zombie 2, Zombie Strippers