December 31, 2018
As the year closes, we lose Larry Roberts, 81, to a heart attack.
As a manager of the US Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency, ARPA, Roberts oversaw the development of Arpanet, the major forerunner to the World Wide Web. On October 29, 1969, the first message (“Login,” but only “lo” got through) went from UCLA to Stanford. Roberts later went on to work in the burgeoning computer industry.
November 25, 2018
Nicholas Roeg has passed away at the age of 90.
The influential British filmmaker first made his name as a cinematographer, working on such classics as Dr. Zhivago, Lawrence of Arabia, and Fahrenheit 451. He got his directorial career off to a rocking start with the controversial Performance (1970) starring Mick Jagger. Roeg was no stranger to genre; his films include The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976) and The Witches (1990).1 Many people remember him for the movie we’re reviewing as a memorial, Don’t Look Now (1973). The cryptic cult classic combines Hitchcockian style and psychological horror with twists supernatural (or science-fictional, I suppose, depending on your interpretation of the film).
Rest in Peace.
It’s questionable whether the characters in this film can.
November 16, 2018
Multi-talented author and screenwriter William Goldman has died at the age of 87, of colon cancer and pneumonia. He had many successes, but he will be best remembered by Bureau-crats and other nerds as the author of The Princess Bride.
November 12, 2018
July 6, 2018
Steve Ditko has passed away at age 90. He will always be deservedly known for his contributions to the creation of Spider-Man and Dr. Strange above all else, but I also have a soft spot for Speedball, Squirrel Girl, the Question, and so many more.
June 28, 2018
Harlan Ellison, the outspoken, prolific author of stories, novels, screenplays, TV, and comics, died in his sleep this morning at the age of 84. Ellison wrote many a beloved and thought-provoking SF story including Trek‘s “The City on the Edge of Forever,” and won, in the words of Rick Green, “every coveted award– except Miss Congeniality.” Stephen King opined today that “If there’s an afterlife, Harlan is already kicking ass and taking down names.” John Scalzi has offered his own perspective on the irascible Mr. Ellison.
SF will miss him.
March 14, 2018
The world’s best-known theoretical physicist, Stephen Hawking, died this morning at the age of 76. He will be remembered for his contributions to science, and his affable appearances as himself in various media.
“I’m not afraid of death,” he once said, “but I’m in no hurry to die. I have so much I want to do first.”
Rest in Peace.
January 23, 2018
One great masters of genre fiction has passed away today. It’s difficult to put into words just how influential and powerful a voice she was in the genre.
August 8, 2017
Haruo Nakajima, the stunt actor who stomped to fame as the original Godzilla, has died from pneumonia at 88. A kind of low-tech predecessor to Anthony Serkis, Nakajima played the Monster King in 12 movies, and also performed a number of other famous Japanese feature creatures.