So you think you’re a NERD. Not the kind of nerd that would hang out with Lamar and Booger and the other Tri-Lams–BUT a REAL Sci-Fi NERD. Whell let’s just how how nerdy you really are. Below is a little checklist of 20 Things Every Sci-Fi Nerd Should Own To Earn, physically as well as emotionally. If you “own” at least twelve of these twenty things, you are entitled to your SCI-FI Nerd Badge.
So -- setting aside the fact that I personally prefer the term 'geek' to 'nerd' -- let's see how I stack up!
1) Conan The Barbarian Soundtrack
Yes. This is an interesting pick, and well-chosen: it's just obscure enough that it's not going to be a mainstream thing that anyone outside of Geek Culture will own, but it's good enough that one can reasonably say, "Yes, you should own this if you like film music/fantasy film music/cult classic stuff." Whatever flaws that movie may have had, the Basil Poledouris's wonderful score isn't one of them. (I only wish it had been recorded better. The string sound on the score is thin and treble-heavy.)
2) Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep
Sigh. I own nothing by Phillip K. Dick. This is not good. I accept the demerit here.
3) The Twilight Zone Collection:
I don't own it. But I do have a number of options for watching TZ, both online and via my local library. So I'm counting it.
4) The Original Star Wars Trilogy – WITHOUT ANY ADDED CRAP
Yes, I own it. On VHS. Which I can't watch, because we don't have a VHS player anymore. And I likely wouldn't bother anyway. I'm just not that invested in the idea of preserving the 1977 Star Wars experience in amber. Lucas's additions in later years just don't add up to enough to offend me. (And at this point, I wouldn't care if Han had never shot at all and Greedo had died when he got struck by a blowdart fired by a Jawa who missed his target and hit Greedo instead. I'm so sick of the "Han shot first!" whining and the conceit that changing a single two-second event somehow alters his character at the molecular level.)
5) A Profound Hatred for Star Trek Enterprise
I don't have a profound hatred for Enterprise. I do, however, have a profound apathy about it. I don't plan to ever watch it. By the time Enterprise came along, I was Trekked out. I would like to rewatch all of TOS, TNG, and DS9. But that's about it.
6) The Lord of The Rings Extended Edition, The Soundtracks and all of the books
What is 'all of the books'? I own three copies of LOTR, two of The Hobbit (including the annotated edition), and two of The Silmarillion. Do I also have to own all of the "History of Middle Earth" books and the various Tolkien collections and every other piece of Tolkien arcana that's come out in the last twenty years? I don't, but I'm counting myself good on this one, anyway.
7) A Profound Sadness for the Way Battlestar Galactica Ended
I just started watching BSG last week! As I'm only ninety minutes (the first half of the pilot telemovie) in, I'll have to hold this one in abeyance.
8 ) A Passionately Favorite Version of the REAL Doctor Who
I'm not nearly educated enough on Doctor Who to have a solid opinion. But the first Doctor I ever watched was Peter Davison, whom I liked just fine. I need to watch more, though. Much more. (Also liked Tom Baker, as I saw some of him, too.)
9) A Fear That Will Smith Will Someday Star in The Movie Adaptation of Your Favorite Book
No, but I don't know how Smith could appear in a movie of The Lions of Al-Rassan. I don't recall any black people in that book. Maybe he could be a particularly dark-skinned Asharite. Hmmmm. Anyway, I don't hate Will Smith.
10) Toys from Your Childhood That You Refuse To Part With
I don't have anything from my childhood, save a nesting doll that's around here someplace. I do, though, have toys that I acquired in adulthood that I wanted as a kid. That counts!
11) The Belief that the Word Midichlorian Was Just from a Nightmare and NOT a real Star Wars Movie
I don't have a problem in principle with midichlorians; I reject the notion that midichlorians represent a shift from the Force as 'mystical magic' to something 'scientific'. What bothers me about them is that there's no real story reason for them.
12) The Original TRON Movie
Yup! Have it and love it. (I also seem to be in the minority of folks who loved TRON Legacy.)
13) An affection for the TV show Firefly
Oh, yes. I have this in spades. Firefly is just amazingly wonderful.
14) A Hatred for Chris O’Donnell
Meh. I didn't mind him in Batman Forever (the Val Kilmer one), and the problems with Batman and Robin went a lot deeper than casting. O'Donnell's just kind of there for me. I had a harder time with him as D'Artagnan than I did with him as Robin. (And even that didn't bother me too much.)
15) You Know Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics:
16) You think Cheetara is HOT!
I never watched Thundercats. It fell, timewise, into an era for me when it was able to slip past me, completely unnoticed. I don't even recall hearing about it back then, and I couldn't even begin to tell you what channel I would have watched it on. It's even possible that it started airing before we even had cable when I was a kid. It always interests me to see cultural things that just pass right by without even making a mark upon me. I have friends who are just a couple years younger than me who tell me how awesome Thundercats was. Sometimes a couple years is all it takes to shift your attitudes for life.
17) You Believe Aliens are our REAL Gods
I'm not even sure what this means.
18) You Have a Favorite Animated Cult Sci-Fi Movie
Heavy Metal? I guess....
19) You Blame Hot Rod for Optimus Prime’s Death
Sorry, but I never cared one whit about the Transformers.
20) You DESPISE Michael Bay for Masturbating on your Childhood
When did he do this? Transformers? Don't care. I think Michael Bay is a terrible filmmaker, but that's about it. He hasn't yet sullied anything that was important to my childhood.
So, by my count, I only have eight of these. I'm close on some, but I miss out by virtue of the emotional qualifiers involved. So by this measure, at least, I appear to fall short of true Nerd- or Geekdom. But that doesn't matter, though! Geekdom is like Zen or cool: it's a state of mind.