0693: "Children's Fantasy"

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chocolate.razorblades
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0693: "Children's Fantasy"

Postby chocolate.razorblades » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:07 am UTC

Image
http://xkcd.com/693/

Title: I was going to be a scientist, but that seems silly now. Magical worlds exist. I've learned a huge truth about our place in the universe. I'm supposed to care about college? I mean, FUCK.

lmao. This is perfect.

Apparently it's my turn to post the topic.

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Raiker
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Raiker » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:09 am UTC

Is this meant to be an allusion to the Chronicles of Narnia? Sounds rather like the magician's nephew to me. Not that I've read that in the past decade.

Code: Select all

foreach (Human h in Earth.People) {
    if (typeof(h) == n00b) {
        h.die();
    }
}


Spoiler:
The cake is a lie!

skylerdray
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby skylerdray » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:10 am UTC

So funny. I used to wish pokemon were a reality as a child. I didn't even know.

chocolate.razorblades
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby chocolate.razorblades » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:11 am UTC

It's meant to be a generic allusion to all children's fantasy novels in which the child enters another world and becomes a hero, so you can name a few.

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eleniy86
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby eleniy86 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:11 am UTC

wow, get out of my head Randall! seriously! i just finished the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe! :(

(and yes, I know they've been around for a while, but I missed out on these books as a kid so the bf is catching me up!)

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby dennisw » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:14 am UTC

chocolate.razorblades wrote:It's meant to be a generic allusion to all children's fantasy novels in which the child enters another world and becomes a hero, so you can name a few.

Including Avatar, by the way (which I saw with...).
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Phoenix '97
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Phoenix '97 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:15 am UTC

Thanks, now I need to listen to A-HA - Living A Boy's Adventure Tale.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Omegaton » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:16 am UTC

Well, at least he's not a loser anymore.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Paroxysm » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:20 am UTC

Loved it :)
I was a little bit afraid Mr. Munroe was losing his touch over the last coupple of weeks, but the latest strips are right up there!
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby aion7 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:24 am UTC

The Phantom Tollbooth still rocks.
Spoiler:
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Comic JK » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:25 am UTC

I wish we'd seen why he was the most effective kingdom-saver available...

Especially something like 'quick! We need someone to program these asynchronous Java sockets!'
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MiB24601
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby MiB24601 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:27 am UTC

What, just because magical worlds exist, he can't be a scientist? The ghostbusters* thought that ghosts existed and they still became scientists; they simply went into a field that proved that they weren't crazy. Hopefully, the kid was a loser because he was incredibly good at math**. He'll need that for all the physics he'll have to do to show he's not crazy.

* Yes, I'm using a silly comedy to prove a point. This is OK because it's THE BEST silly comedy.
** Not that being good at math makes you a loser but it sure seems like it does when you're a kid.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby BlindSight » Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:37 am UTC

I would probably be more driven to prove that those worlds exist. If that happened I would probably have an insatiable urge to return to that magical world anyways.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Eutychus » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:04 am UTC

Sounds a lot like Digory Kirke to me. He went on to become an eminent but reclusive professor, so I guess there's hope.

Then again, his example suggests the secret is to drag someone else with you through the portal.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby XbHW_TestEngr » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:08 am UTC

dennisw wrote:
chocolate.razorblades wrote:It's meant to be a generic allusion to all children's fantasy novels in which the child enters another world and becomes a hero, so you can name a few.

Including Avatar, by the way (which I saw with...).


Epic, no double-epic referencing.

I remember traveling to a wonderful, magical place in my childhood. And, some of them came back with me ... as voices.
As an engineer (applied-scientist), I know the voices aren't' real, but sometimes they have some pretty good ideas.

You know, of course, that all the people working on LHC have visited magical lands; black holes are the gateways between dimensions.
(note: Land of the Lost was a documentary)
... and there will be cake.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby GodShapedBullet » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:11 am UTC

Raiker wrote:Is this meant to be an allusion to the Chronicles of Narnia? Sounds rather like the magician's nephew to me. Not that I've read that in the past decade.


It reminded me a lot of Chronicles of Narnia. The director of the Prince Caspian movie made Peter super angsty at the beginning of the movie for this very reason.

"From High King to High School" he said on the DVD commentary. It was pretty slick.

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niknak94
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby niknak94 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:14 am UTC

ESPECIALLY like the Chronicles of Narnia. I think it's the green and yellow rings used in The Magicians Nephew that are popping up in my head, so bleh.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby DanielLC » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:16 am UTC

It's funny and all, but memory doesn't work that way. You only have to lie about it until you convince yourself it didn't happen.

On a side note, couldn't you just test the ring for isotopes? That world probably doesn't have the same proportions as ours does, and even if it does, they didn't test a bunch of nukes thus increasing the amount of carbon-14.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby GodShapedBullet » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:23 am UTC

DanielLC wrote:It's funny and all, but memory doesn't work that way. You only have to lie about it until you convince yourself it didn't happen.

On a side note, couldn't you just test the ring for isotopes? That world probably doesn't have the same proportions as ours does, and even if it does, they didn't test a bunch of nukes thus increasing the amount of carbon-14.


Yeah, plus Susan forgot about it no problem.

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Me321
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Me321 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:47 am UTC

GodShapedBullet wrote:
DanielLC wrote:It's funny and all, but memory doesn't work that way. You only have to lie about it until you convince yourself it didn't happen.

On a side note, couldn't you just test the ring for isotopes? That world probably doesn't have the same proportions as ours does, and even if it does, they didn't test a bunch of nukes thus increasing the amount of carbon-14.


Yeah, plus Susan forgot about it no problem.


Umm...
Spoiler:
what about the last book?


Spoiler:
my first thought when finishing the books was "poor Susan"

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Eutychus » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:03 am UTC

Me321: Neil Gaiman has written a short story called "The Problem of Susan" - a poke at CS Lewis' "The problem with pain" - dealing with this issue. How successfully is another question. Plus it's not for the faint-hearted. From Wikipedia:

"The Problem of Susan" is written for an adult audience and deals with sexuality, bestiality, and violence.
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Beauty of 'Kid's imaginations'

Postby Chrisfs » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:21 am UTC

There's sort of a way out of this problem. Since he/she is a kid, they (lack of 3rd person singular for indefinite genders WTL) can say
"I went to another world and there was this king and I fought these monsters, and I beat them up and saved the kingdom!"
and paretns will go "that's great honey, what an awesome person you are" "aren't kid's imaginations great?"

It is not a perfect solution, since they still don't believe you, but at least they don't think you're crazy for a few years.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby westrim » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:22 am UTC

Damn you Randall.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Felgraf » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:39 am UTC

MiB24601 wrote:He'll need that for all the physics he'll have to do to show he's not crazy.


Doing physics does not prove your not crazy. In fact, as a physics grad student, I wish to argue the opposite. I'm pretty sure almost *all* of my fellow grad students in physics are at least a little cracked in the head!

/Oh god not more q-mech homework.
Last edited by Felgraf on Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:42 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby GodShapedBullet » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:40 am UTC

Me321 wrote:
GodShapedBullet wrote:Yeah, plus Susan forgot about it no problem.


Umm...
Spoiler:
what about the last book?


Spoiler:
my first thought when finishing the books was "poor Susan"


Spoiler:
I've always seen Susan's rejection of Narnia as a bit on the unbelievable side and never really liked it.

It could have been done better if it was going to be done.


Do we actually need spoiler tags on this?

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Tracy Poff » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:00 am UTC

I've just recently re-watched Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, and this is exactly how it went,
Spoiler:
though he did get to go back to London Below after having the epiphany that the real world sucks. How much of a downer it would have been to cut off a minute early before that happened!

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Quicksilver » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:07 am UTC

Comic JK wrote:I wish we'd seen why he was the most effective kingdom-saver available...

Especially something like 'quick! We need someone to program these asynchronous Java sockets!'
He probably destroyed the evil that past good guys were only able to seal away for 100 years.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Plasma Man » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:13 am UTC

The answer's simple: He should become an author and write about his adventures. That way he gets to make lots of money and not have people think he's crazy.

Also, I really like the art in this one, especially the horse. It's impressive how well the stick figure and the non-stick characters (presumably Teflon-coated) work together.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby wisty » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:51 am UTC

At least he doesn't have leprosy.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby ++$_ » Mon Jan 25, 2010 9:52 am UTC

Simple solution: Become a mathematician. That way, you're studying something that is relevant in every world (not just this one). Besides, that way everyone will think you are crazy anyway.

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby LuNatic » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:01 am UTC

*Sigh*

Depressing much? : :(
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby pedrokdc » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:39 am UTC

it happened to me once, but instead of getting crazy I became a scientist and I would always have that voice in my head telling me:

"If the magical paradigm can do it, the scientific paradigm can to it would just be bigger, slower and take more time"

mail me if you would like to be my friends XD

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Makri » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:48 am UTC

I watched The Golden Compass yesterday and afterwards had a conversation about children's books with someone in which I expressed my disapproval of Lewis' Narnia. You can imagine how badly my cheese was burnt when I saw this comic in the morning. :D Definitely a get-out-of-my-head moment.
Last edited by Makri on Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:45 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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paolo
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby paolo » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:57 am UTC

Oh, boy!
I know I shouldn't say it, particularly at my age, but anyway...
Get Out Of My Head, Randall!

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby floreal » Mon Jan 25, 2010 10:58 am UTC

speaking of narnia... anybody know why they didnt make a movie of the first book?... i mean... i really like the way the evil queen came to narnia xD...
"whoops i just awoke the evil queen of this universe and dragged her to a new, perfect and wonderful world, thus completely dooming it for a few hundred years, well... thats not MY problem, cyaaaa"

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby J L » Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:24 am UTC

Wonderful strip. The cruel thing with these stories always is that the returning hero already has a proof (in this case the ring), which works if not for others, then at least for himself: others might never believe him, but he cannot pretend it never happened. And still, he can never share this truth, and probably never return to that place.

This is a problem only rarely dealt with in stories. So thanks for pointing out that Gaiman story to me, must read ...

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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby DragonHawk » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:02 pm UTC

Way to ruin my childhood dreams, Randall. (Which were still alive and well at 33, I might add. You don't stop dreaming when you grow old. You grow old when you stop dreaming.)
-----
floreal wrote:speaking of narnia... anybody know why they didnt make a movie of the first book?...

The first book *published* was The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. The Magician's Nephew is actually book six in publication order. Some printings number them based on publication order, some number them based on in-story chronological order.

Which order is "correct" is a source of endless argument and flamewars. Which will now prolly start again here.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby mikekearn » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:05 pm UTC

floreal wrote:speaking of narnia... anybody know why they didnt make a movie of the first book?... i mean... i really like the way the evil queen came to narnia xD...
"whoops i just awoke the evil queen of this universe and dragged her to a new, perfect and wonderful world, thus completely dooming it for a few hundred years, well... thats not MY problem, cyaaaa"

They are making the movies in the order they were published, not following the internal chronology.

EDIT: Whoops, ninja'd.
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Re: "Children's Fantasy" Discussion

Postby Steroid » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:09 pm UTC

I gotta go with the "keep it a secret" option. There's an incredible amount of self-satisfaction to be derived from knowing that, no matter how much smarter, stronger, or successful everyone you meet is, you have knowledge, power, and success they can't even fathom. And an incredible amount of self-righteousness to be derived from knowing that, however mean the people you meet are, that you are good because you saved a kingdom. In fact, you can be just about as big of a jerk as you want in your personal life, and still come out ahead in karma.

Er. . . at least, that's what I would *assume* would happen. 'Cause I never did that. No way. I'm not crazy, no way.

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Re: Beauty of 'Kid's imaginations'

Postby Roujo » Mon Jan 25, 2010 12:22 pm UTC

I lolled. =P

Chrisfs wrote:they (lack of 3rd person singular for indefinite genders WTL)

You could use those: Spivak Pronouns.


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