Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Two Men Who Asked "What If?"

Asking the question "what if?" is part of what makes us human as it shows us imagining something that does exist not yet  and then use our creative powers to answer it ourselves. To-day I'd like to show two men who asked this question and thus show how fruitful the answers to this question can be.

The first of these men is Rod Serling who created the television show Twilight Zone. It asks "What if...?" and then dramatically depicts Mr. Serling's often clever answer to that question. I've begun watching the series lately (having already seen many episodes in school classes), and my favourite of the ones I've seen so far asks the question "What if one could delay death?" in the episode "One For the Angels":

The second man who asked "What if?" is Japanese anime and manga artist Leiji Matsumoto. One of his most famous series, Galaxy Express 999 about an orphaned boy named Tetsuro who travels across the Galaxy with a mysterious woman named Maetel in order to fulfill his mother's dying wish then he gain a cyborg body, asks two major "What if" questions: "What if there was a an express train that travelled through the stars of space?" and "What if humans could gain cyborg bodies that greatly lengthened their lives?". In each individual episode of the series, Matsumoto asks a "What if?" question such as "What if there was a planet where some people glowed in the dark like fireflies?" and explores its potential consequences. Incidentally the entire series can be legally watched with English subtitles on Crunchyroll.com.

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