The Impossible Planet by Philip K.Dick

I am currently watching Electric Dreams on Channel 4. The second episode of Electric Dreams”The Impossible Planet” is a thought provoking adaptation based on a short story by Philip K. Dick which was first published in Imagination in October 1953.

It features Captain Andrews and Norton who both work for Astral Dreams a company specializing in interstellar cruises. They meet a 350-year-old deaf woman (Mrs. Gordon) who insists on purchasing a ticket to Earth, having traveled from Riga to Formalhaut IX. The old woman is accompanied by a robot. Andrews explains that he cannot take the old woman to Earth because there is no such place, it is only a myth and likely never existed. The robant (a robotic servant) explains that Mrs. Gordon heard of Earth from her grandfather who was born there and she wants to see Earth before she dies, and will pay any money required to fulfil her final wish.

So Andrews begins researching for possible planets that fit legends of Earth. Through his research, Andrews learns that Earth was most likely the third planet in a nine planet system, with a single moon, but was left uninhabitable by the Centauran-Riga war and now has radioactive toxins in the air. He narrows down the search to a few possible places. Nearby is Emphor III, which fits the description. so they lie to Mrs Gordon and take her there instead, however the planet looks nothing like Earth as she pictured from the legends. So they tell her that commercial industrial operations have exhausted the surface. Then Whilst exploring the surface Andrews hears birds then finds a small coin on the surface bearing the markings “E Pluribus Unum”….

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Jim Henson

IMG_5036Best known as the creator of The Muppets, The late great Jim Henson was born on 24th September 1936 in Greenville, Mississippi. Raised in Maryland he was educated atUniversity of Maryland, College Park, where he created Sam and Friends. He spent his early childhood in Leland, Mississipi moving with his family to Hyattsville, Maryland, near Washington, D.C., in the late 1940s. He later remembered the arrival of the family’s first television as “the biggest event of his adolescence,”having been heavily influenced by radio ventriloquist Edgar Bergen and the early television puppets of Burr Tillstrom and Bil and Cora Baird. In 1954 while attending Northwestern High School, he began working for WTOP-TV, creating puppets for a Saturday morning children’s show called The Junior Morning Show.

After graduating from high school, Henson enrolled at the University of Maryland, College Park, as a studio arts major. A puppetry class offered in the applied arts department introduced him to the craft and textiles courses in the College of Home Economics, and he graduated in 1960 with a B.S. in home economics. As a freshman, he was asked to create Sam and Friends, a 5-minute puppet show for WRC-TV. The characters on Sam and Friends were forerunners of the Muppets, and the show included a prototype of Henson’s most famous character: Kermit the Frog. Henson remained at WRC for seven years from 1954 to 1961. He began experimenting with techniques which improved puppetry, such as using the frame defined by the camera shot to allow the puppeteer to work from off-screen. To give his puppets “life and sensitivity,” Henson began making characters from flexible, fabric-covered foam rubber, making them more expressive. Henson also used rods instead of string to move his Muppets’ arms, allowing greater control of expression and to enable his muppet characters to “speak” more creatively than was possible for previous puppets, Henson used precise mouth movements to match the dialogue. Henson asked fellow University of Maryland sophomore Jane Nebel (whom he later married) to assist him on Sam and Friends Which became a financial success, After Graduating from college Henson visited Europe where he was inspired by European puppeteers who look on their work as an art form. Henson also contributed to Saturday Night Live, but eventually found success when In 1969, Joan Ganz Cooney and the team at the Children’s Television Workshop asked him to work on Sesame Street, Which featured a series of funny, colourful puppet characters living on the titular street, including Grover, Oscar the Grouch, Bert and Ernie, Cookie Monster and Big Bird. Henson performed the characters of Ernie, game-show host Guy Smile, and Kermit the Frog, the roving television news reporter.At first, Henson’s Muppets appeared separately from the realistic segments on the Street, but the two were gradually integrated and The success of Sesame Street allowed Henson to stop producing commercials.

In addition to creating and performing Muppet characters, Henson was involved in producing various shows and animation inserts using a variety of methods including (“Dollhouse”, “Number Three Ball Film”), stop-motion (“King of Eight”, “Queen of Six”), cut-out animation (“Eleven Cheer”), computer animation (“Nobody Counts To 10″) and the original C is For Cookie. Henson also directed Tales from Muppetland, a short series of TV movie specials—in the form of comedic tellings of classic fairy tales—aimed at a young audience and hosted by Kermit the Frog. The series included Hey, Cinderella!, The Frog Prince, and The Muppet Musicians of Bremen. Henson, Frank Oz, and his team also created a series of adult orientated sketches on the first season of the comedy series Saturday Night Live(SNL). Eleven “Dregs and Vestiges” sketches, set mostly in the Land of Gorch, Around the time of Henson’s characters’ final appearances on SNL, he began developing two projects featuring the Muppets: a Broadway show and a weekly television series, which was rejected by American Networks

However Henson convinced British impresario Lew Grade to finance the Muppet show which featured Kermit the Frog as host, and a variety of other memorable characters, notably Miss Piggy, Gonzo the Great, Scooter, Animal, the Swedish Chef, Bunsen Honeydew and Fozzie Bear. The creative team moved to England and began working on the Muppets. Jim Henson was himself the performer for several well known characters, including Kermit the Frog, Rowlf the Dog, Dr. Teeth, the Swedish Chef,Waldorf, Link Hogthrob, and Guy Smiley. In 1977, Henson produced a one-hour television adaptation of the Russell Hoban story Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas and Three years after the start of The Muppet Show, the Muppets appeared in their first theatrical feature film The Muppet Movie, which was a critical and financial success; and A song from the movie, “The Rainbow Connection”, sung by Henson as Kermit, hit number 25 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was nominated for an Academy Award. A sequel, The Great Muppet Caper, followed in 1981 and Henson decided to end the still-popular Muppet Show to concentrate on making films, however the Muppet characters occasionally appeared in made-for-TV-movies and television specials. Recently The Muppets appeared in a Walt Disney Movie in 2012 alongside Amy Adams and remain popular.

In 1979, he was asked by the producers of the Star Wars sequel The Empire Strikes Back to aid make-up artist Stuart Freeborn in the creation and articulation of enigmatic Jedi Master Yoda. Henson suggested to George Lucas that he use Frank Oz as the puppeteer and voice of Yoda in The Empire Strikes Back and each of the four subsequent Star Wars films. Lucas even lobbied unsuccessfully to have Oz nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Academy Award. In 1982, Henson founded the Jim Henson Foundation to promote and develop the art of puppetry in the United States. He also began creating darker and more realistic fantasy films that did not feature the Muppets such as 1982’s The Dark Crystal, which he co-directed with Frank Oz from conceptual artwork created by Brian Froud. In 1983 The Muppets Take Manhattan (directed by Frank Oz) was released, then In 1986 the film Labyrinth, was released, a Dark Crystal-like fantasy featuring Jennifer Connolly and David Bowie as The Goblin King.

During production of his later projects, Henson began to experience flu like symptoms. On May 4, 1990, Henson made one of his last television appearances on The Arsenio Hall Show, Feeling tired and having a sore throat, Henson traveled to Ahoskie, North Carolina, for a family visit And consulted a physician in North Carolina before returning to to New York. At 2 am on May 15, Henson started having trouble breathing and began coughing up blood. But delayed visiting the hospital for two hours until he finally agreed to go to New York Hospital, By which time he could not breathe on his own anymore due to abscesses in his lungs and was placed on a mechanical ventilator to help him breathe, but his condition deteriorated rapidly into septic shock, until sadly On the morning of May 16, 1990, Henson died at the age of 53 at New York Hospital. Henson’s death was covered as a significant news story, occurring on the same day as the death of Sammy Davis Jr. The official cause of death was first reported as a Bacterial Infection caused byStreptococcus pneumoniae, Henson’s actual cause of death, however, was organ failure resulting from Streptococcus pyogenes, a severe Group A streptococcal infection.

A public memorial service was conducted in New York City On May 21, at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. Another one was conducted on July 2 at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. As per Henson’s wishes, no one in attendance wore black, and The Dirty Dozen Brass Band finished the service by performing “When the Saints Go Marching In”. Harry Belafonte also sang “Turn the World Around,” a song he had debuted on The Muppet Show, Big Bird, performed by Caroll Spinney, also sang Kermit the Frog’s signature song, “Bein’ Green”. six of the core Muppet performers—Dave Goelz, Frank Oz, Kevin Clash, Steve Whitmire, Jerry Nelson and Richard Hunt—also sang, in their characters’ voices, a medley of Jim Henson’s favorite songs, eventually ending with a growing number of performers singing “Just One Person” which was recreated for the 1990 television special The Muppets Celebrate Jim Henson and inspired screenwriter Richard Curtis, who attended the London service, to write the growing-orchestra wedding scene in the 2003 film Love Actually.

Henson was cremated at Ferncliff Cemetery and his ashes were scattered at his ranch in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Henson’s companies, which are now run by his children, continue to produce films and television shows. The Jim Henson Company and the Jim Henson Foundation continued after his death, producing new series and specials. Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, founded by Henson, also continues to build creatures for a large number of other films and series, such as Farscape, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and the movie MirrorMask). Henson remains one of the most advanced and well respected creators of film creatures and In 2004, The Muppets were sold to The Walt Disney Company. One of Henson’s last projects is a show attraction in Walt Disney World and Disneyland featuring the Muppets, called Muppet*Vision 3D, which opened in 1991, shortly after his death. To date The Jim Henson Company retains the Creature Shop, as well as the rest of its film and television library including Fraggle Rock, Farscape, The Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth.

Phantom of the Opera

The Phantom of the Opera (Le Fantôme de l’Opéra), by Gaston Leroux, was first published as a serialization in Le Gaulois on 23 September 1909. It features a character named Christine Daaé who travels with her father, a famous fiddler, throughout Europe and plays folk and religious music. She I s brought to rural France by a patron, Professor Valerius after both her parents die. As a child her father told her many stories about the “Angel of Music,” who is the personification of musical inspiration. Christine meets and befriends the young Raoul, Viscount of Chagny. One of Christine and Raoul’s favourite stories is one of Little Lotte, a girl who is visited by the Angel of Music who possesses a heavenly voice.

Christine is eventually given a position in the chorus at the Paris Opera House (Palais Garnier) and begins hearing a beautiful, unearthly voice which sings to her and speaks to her. She believes this must be the Angel of Music and asks him if he is. The Voice agrees and offers to teach her “a little bit of heaven’s music.” The Voice, however, belongs to Erik, a physically deformed and mentally disturbed musical genius who was one of the architects who took part in the construction of the opera. Erik falls in love with Christine And has also been extorting money from the Opera’s management for many years, and is referred to as the “Opera Ghost” by the denizens of the Opera. Christine triumphs at the gala on the night of the old managers’ retirement. Her old childhood friend Raoul hears her sing and recalls his love for her. He then hears the “Angel of Music” speaking to Christine. The Paris Opera then performs Faust, with the prima donna Carlotta playing the lead, against Erik’s wishes, in response Carlotta loses her voice and the Erik drops the grand chandelier into the audience causing carnage.

After the accident, Erik kidnaps Christine, brings her to his home in the catacombs beneath the opera House and reveals his true identity. He plans to keep her there for a few days, hoping she will come to love him. Christine begins to find herself attracted to her abductor, until she unmasks him and, beholds his face, which according to the book, resembles the face of a rotting corpse. Erik goes into a frenzy, stating she probably thinks his face is another mask, and whilst digging her fingers in to show it was really his face he shouts, “I am Don Juan Triumphant!” before crawling away, crying. Fearing that she will leave him, he decides to keep her with him forever, but when Christine requests release after two weeks, he agrees on condition that she wear his ring and be faithful to him. On the roof of the opera house, Christine tells Raoul that Erik abducted her. Raoul promises to take Christine away to a place where Erik can never find her. Raoul tells Christine he shall act on his promise the next day.

The two leave togather but are unaware that Erik has been listening to their conversation and that he has become extremely jealous. In the meantime Erik terrorises anyone who stands in his way or obstructs Christine’s career, including the managers. The following night, Erik kidnaps Christine during a production of Faust and tries to force Christine to marry him. He states that if she refuses, he will use explosives (which he has planted in the cellars) to destroy the entire opera house. Christine refuses, until she realizes that Erik has trapped Raoul (along with The Persian, an old acquaintance of Erik who was helping Raoul). To save them and the people above, Christine agrees to marry Erik, who then tries to clobber Raoul and The Persian for good…

Stephen King

American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy Stephen Edwin King was born September 21, 1947 . His books have sold more than 350 million copies and have been adapted into a number of feature films, television movies and comic books. King has published 50 novels, including seven under the pen-name ofRichard Bachman, and five non-fiction books. He has written nearly two hundred short stories, most of which have been collected in nine collections of short fiction. Many of his stories are set in his home state of Maine.King has received Bram Stoker Awards, World Fantasy Awards, British Fantasy SocietyAwards, his novella The Way Station was a Nebula Award novelette nominee, and his short story “The Man in the Black Suit” received the O. Henry Award. In 2003, the National Book Foundation awarded him the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He has also received awards for his contribution to literature for his whole career, such as the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement (2004), the Canadian Booksellers Association Lifetime Achievement Award 2007 and the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America (2007)

Some have suggested that king may have been psychologically inspired to write horror when, as a child, King apparently witnessed one of his friends being struck and killed by a train, after which King returned, speechless and seemingly in shock. Only later did the family learn of the friend’s death. King also compared his sudden inspiration for writing horror to his uncle’s successfully dowsing for water. He Was also inspired by an H. P. Lovecraft collection of short stories, entitled The Lurker in the Shadows, that had belonged to his father. The cover art featured an illustration of a yellow-green demon hiding within the recesses of a Hellish cavern beneath a tombstone.

King attended Durham Elementary School and graduated from Lisbon Falls High School, in Lisbon Falls, Maine. He displayed an early interest in horror as an avid reader of EC’s horror comics, including Tales from the Crypt. He began writing for fun while still in school, contributing articles to Dave’s Rag, the newspaper his brother published, and later began selling to his friends stories based on movies he had seen (though when discovered by his teachers, he was forced to return the profits). The first of his stories to be independently published was “I Was a Teenage Grave Robber”; it was serialized over four issues of a fanzine, Comics Review, in 1965. That story was published the following year in a revised form as “In a Half-World of Terror” in another fanzine, Stories of Suspense.

From 1966, King studied English at the University of Maine, graduating in 1970 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. That same year, his first daughter, Naomi Rachel, was born. He wrote a column for the student newspaper, The Maine Campus, titled “Steve King’s Garbage Truck”, took part in a writing workshop organized by Burton Hatlen, and took odd jobs to pay for his studies. He sold his first professional short story, “The Glass Floor”, to Startling Mystery Stories in 1967.After leaving the university, King earned a certificate to teach high school but, initially supplemented his wage by selling short stories to men’s magazines such as Cavalier. Many of which have been republished in the collection Night Shift. In 1971, King married Tabitha Spruce, whom he had met at the University’s Fogler Library after one of Professor Hatlen’s workshops. King was hired as a teacher at Hampden Academy in Hampden, Maine. He continued to contribute short stories to magazines and worked on ideas for novels.

In the 1970s, King began what became a series of interconnected stories about a lone gunslinger, Roland, who pursues the “Man in Black” in an alternate-reality universe that is a cross between J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth and the American Wild West as depicted by Clint Eastwood and Sergio Leone in their spaghetti Westerns. The first of these stories, The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, was initially published in five installments by The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction from 1977 to 1981. The Gunslinger was continued as an eight-book epic series called The Dark Tower, which books King wrote and published infrequently over four decades ]In 1987, King released the second installment, The Dark Tower II: The Drawing of the Three, in which Roland draws three people from 20th-century United States into his world through magical doors. A hardcover limited edition of the revised version of The Gunslinger along with a prequel story set in the Dark Tower world called “The Little Sisters of Eluria” was also published (which was originally published in 1998 in the collection Legends: Short Novels by the Masters of Modern Fantasy) in 2009.

In 2005, King signed a deal with Marvel Comics to publish a seven-issue limited series spin-off of the series called The Gunslinger Born. The series, which focuses on a young Roland Deschain, was plotted by Robin Furth, with dialogue by Peter David, and illustrated by Eisner Award-winning artist Jae Lee. The first issue was published on February 7, 2007, and King, David, Lee, and Marvel Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada appeared at a midnight signing at a Times Square, New York comic book store to promote it. The work had sold over 200,000 copies by March 2007. The success of The Gunslinger Born led to an ongoing miniseries published by Marvel, with Furth and David continuing to collaborate, featuring both adapted material from the Dark Tower books and new material approved by King; it also led to a second series of King adaptations in the same format, serializing the events of The Stand. In 2008, King published both a novel, Duma Key, and a collection, Just After Sunset. The latter featured 13 short stories, including a novella, N., which was later released as a serialized animated series And adopted into a limited comic book series.

In 2009, King published Ur, a novella written exclusively for the launch of the second-generation Amazon Kindle and available only on Amazon.com, and Throttle, a novella co-written with his son Joe Hill, and released later as an audiobook Road Rage, which included Richard Matheson’s short story “Duel”. On November 10 that year, King’s novel Under the Dome was published. It is a reworking of an unfinished novel he tried writing twice in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and at 1,074 pages, it is the largest novel he has written since 1986’s It. It debuted at No. 1 in The New York Times Bestseller List.

In 2010 King published a collection of four previously unpublished novellas called Full Dark, No Stars, an original novella called Blockade Billy, and A monthly comic book series called American Vampire, written by King with short-story writer Scott Snyder, and illustrated by Rafael Albuquerque. In it King wrote the background history of the very first American vampire, Skinner Sweet, and Scott Snyder wrote the story of Pearl. King’s next novel, 11/22/63, was published in, 2011, and was nominated for the 2012 World Fantasy Award Best Novel. The eighth Dark Tower volume, The Wind Through the Keyhole, was published in 2012. King’s next book Joyland, is about “an amusement-park serial killer”, and was, published In 2012, followed by the sequel to The Shining (1977), titled Doctor Sleep, published September 2013. His novel Under the Dome has also been adapted for television and A movie adaptation of The Dark Tower is also being released in 2017. A remake of IT has also been made. There is also a television series in the works based on the Dark Tower due to air 2018, of between 10 and 13 episodes, starring Idris Elba and Tom Taylor. The show’s central story, will take place many years before the events depicted in the film and focuses on Roland Deschain’s teenage years, as outlined in the series’ fourth book, Wizard and Glass.

H.G. Wells

English science-fiction author, Herbert George “H. G.” Wells was born 21st September 1866 in Bromley, Kent. He is best known for his work in the science fiction genre but also wrote contemporary novels about, history, politics and social commentary, as well as textbooks and rules for war games. Together with Jules Verne and Hugo Gernsback, Wells has been referred to as “The Father of Science Fiction”. His most notable science fiction works include The War of the Worlds, The Time Machine, The Invisible Man and The Island of Doctor Moreau & his earliest specialised training was in biology, and his thinking on ethical matters took place in a specifically and fundamentally Darwinian context.

Wells became interested in literature after an accident in 1874 left Him with a broken leg. To pass the time he started reading books from the local library, brought to him by his father. He soon became devoted to the other worlds and lives to which books gave him access; they also stimulated his desire to write. In 1874 he entered Thomas Morley’s Commercial Academy, until 1880. From 1880 to 1883, Wells had an apprenticeship as a draper at the Southsea Drapery Emporium. This later inspired the novels The Wheels of Chance and Kipps, which portray the life of a draper’s apprentice as well as providing a critique of society’s distribution of wealth. In October 1879 Wells joined the National School at Wookey in Somerset as a pupil-teacher. After a short apprenticeship at a chemist in nearby Midhurst, and an even shorter stay as a boarder at Midhurst Grammar School, Who offered him the opportunity to become a pupil-teacher, where his proficiency in Latin and science enabled him to continue his self-education in earnest. In 1880 Wells won a scholarship to the Normal School of Science (later the Royal College of Science in South Kensington, now part of Imperial College London) in London,

Studying biology under Thomas Henry Huxley (Who was an English biologist known as “Darwin’s Bulldog” for his advocacy of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution) and also entered the Debating Society of the school. Whilst at the Imperial College he read The Republic by Plato, whose ideas interested him. He also turned to contemporary ideas of socialism as expressed by the recently formed Fabian Society and free lectures delivered at Kelmscott House, the home of William Morris. He also helped establish the Science School Journal, which allowed him to express his views on literature and society, as well as trying his hand at fiction: the first version of his novel The Time Machine was published in the journal under the title, The Chronic Argonauts. Wells also entered the College of Preceptors (College of Teachers). He later received his Licentiate and Fellowship FCP diplomas from the College. Wells earned a Bachelor of Science degree in zoology from the University of London External Programme, In 1889–90 he managed to find a post as a teacher at Henley House School where he taught A. A. Milne.

Wells’s first non-fiction bestseller was Anticipations of the Reaction of Mechanical and Scientific Progress Upon Human Life and Thought. Some of his early novels, invented a number of themes now classic in science fiction in such works as The Time Machine, The Island of Doctor Moreau, The Invisible Man, The War of the Worlds, When the Sleeper Wakes, and The First Men in the Moon, and wrote dozens of short stories and novellas, the best known of which is “The Country of the Blind” (1904) ands some of these also inspired Science Fiction Television- His short story “The New Accelerator” was also the inspiration for the Star Trek episode Wink of an Eye. Wells also wrote non fiction novels which received critical acclaim, including Kipps, Tono-Bungay, The Outline of History, A Short History of the World, The Science of Life and The Work, Wealth and Happiness of Mankind and wrote a number of Utopian novels including A Modern Utopia, which usually begin with the rushing to catastrophe, until a solution is found – such as abandoning war (In the Days of the Comet) or having a world council of scientists taking over, as in The Shape of Things to Come, which was later adapted for the 1936 Alexander Korda film, Things to Come. Wells also contemplated the ideas of nature versus nurture and questions humanity in books such as The Island of Doctor Moreau, where a person discovers an island of animals being vivisected unsuccessfully into human beings, and tries to escape,

In 1936, Wells called for the compilation of a constantly growing and changing World Encyclopaedia, to be reviewed by outstanding authorities and made accessible to every human being. In 1938, he published a collection of essays on the future organisation of knowledge and education, World Brain, including the essay, “The Idea of a Permanent World Encyclopaedia”. Seeking a more structured way to play war games, Wells also wrote Floor Games followed by Little Wars which is recognised today as the first recreational wargame and Wells is regarded by gamers and hobbyists as “the Father of Miniature War Gaming”.

He was also an outspoken socialist, often sympathising with pacifist views and becoming increasingly political and often wrote about the ills of Society leading him to be touted as a worthy successor to Charles Dickens, but Wells described a range of social strata and wrote abundantly about the “New Woman” and the Suffragettes. His most consistent political ideal was the World State, which he considered inevitable. He envisioned the state to be a planned society that would advance science, end nationalism, and allow people to progress by merit rather than birth, Wells also believed in the theory of eugenics and Some contemporary supporters even suggested connections between the degenerate man-creatures portrayed in The Time Machine and Wells’s eugenic beliefs. Wells also brought his interest in Art & Design and politics together which led to the foundation of the Design and Industries Association. In his last book Mind at the End of its Tether he considered the idea that humanity being replaced by another species might not be a bad idea. He also came to call the era “The Age of Frustration”.

During his final years he became particularly outspoken in his criticism of the Catholic Church, he was also a diabetic, and in 1934 co-founded what is now Diabetes UK, the leading charity for people living with diabetes in the UK. On 28 October 1940 Wells was interviewed by Orson Welles, who two years previously had performed an infamous radio adaptation of The War of the Worlds, on KTSA radio in San Antonio, Texas. In the interview, Wells admitted his surprise at the widespread panic that resulted from the broadcast, but acknowledged his debt to Orson Welles for increasing sales of one of his “more obscure” titles. In his preface to the 1941 edition of The War in the Air, Wells had stated that his epitaph should be: “I told you so. You damned fools”. H.G. Wells sadly passed away on 13 August 1946 in London, aged 79 and was cremated at Golders Green Crematorium on 16 August 1946, his ashes scattered at sea. A commemorative blue plaque in his honour was installed at his home in Regent’s Park. His Science fiction novels remain popular and have been adapted for screen and television numerous times.

George R.R.Martin

American fantasy, horror and science fiction Novellist and short story writer George Raymond Richard Martin was born September 20, 1948. As a boy He began writing and selling monster stories for pennies to other neighborhood children, dramatic readings included. He also wrote stories about a mythical kingdom populated by his pet turtles; the turtles died frequently in their toy castle, so he finally decided they were killing each other off in “sinister plots”. Martin attended Mary Jane Donohoe School and then later Marist High School. While there he became an avid comic-book fan, developing a strong interest in the innovative superheroes being published by Marvel Comics and joined the fledgling comics fandom of the era, writing fiction for various fanzines and winning the Alley Award in 1965 for his prose superhero story “Powerman vs. The Blue Barrier”, the first of many awards he would go on to win for his fiction. In 1970 Martin earned a B. S. in Journalism from Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, graduating summa cum laude; he went on to complete his M. S. in Journalism in 1971, also from Northwestern. Martin became a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, and did alternative service work for two years (1972–1974) as a VISTA volunteer, attached to the Cook County Legal Assistance Foundation. An expert chess player, he also directed chess tournaments for the Continental Chess Association from 1973 to 1976. Then from 1976 to 1978 he was an English and journalism instructor at Clarke University (then Clarke College) in Dubuque, IA, becoming Writer In Residence at the college from 1978 to 1979. He became a full time writer After the sudden death of friend and fellow author Tom Reamy in the fall of 1977 and resigned from his job, and moved to Santa Fe in 1979.

At the Age of 21 Martin began selling science fiction short stories professionally. His first sale was “The Hero” and His first story to be nominated for the Hugo Award and Nebula Awards was With Morning Comes Mistfall, published in 1973 in Analog magazine. Between 1977 and 1979 Martin became the Southwest Regional Director for the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and from 1996 to 1998, he served as its vice-president.In 1976 Martin was nominated for two Hugo Awards at the 34th World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon), but lost both awards, to the novelette “…and Seven Times Never Kill Man” and the novella The Storms of Windhaven, co-written with Lisa Tuttle. Although Martin often writes fantasy or horror, a number of his earlier works are science fiction tales occurring in a loosely defined future history, known informally as “The Thousand Worlds” or “The Manrealm”. He has also written at least one piece of political-military fiction, “Night of the Vampyres”, collected in Harry Turtledove’s anthology The Best Military Science Fiction of the 20th Century and, The Armageddon Rag. In 1983 Martin was hired as a staff writer and then as an Executive Story Consultant, for the revival of the Twilight Zone. Martin also worked on Max Headroom and created the show’s “Ped Xing” character (the president of the Zic Zak corporation, Network 23’s primary sponsor). However the show was canceled in the middle of its second season. Martin was then hired for the fantasy Beauty and the Beast writing 14 of its episodes.

He also oversaw development of the multi-author Wild Cards book series, which takes place in a shared universe in which a small slice of post–World War II humanity gains superpowers after the release of an alien-engineered virus; new titles are still being published in the on-going series from Tor Books. In Second Person Martin “gives a personal account of the close-knit role-playing game (RPG) culture that gave rise to his Wild Cards shared-world anthologies”. Martin’s own contributions to Wild Cards have included Thomas Tudbury, “The Great and Powerful Turtle” – a powerful psychokinetic whose flying “shell” consisted of an armored VW Beetle. Other titles in the series include Low Ball and High Stakes. Martin’s novella, Nightflyers, was adapted into a 1987 feature film of the same title.

In 1991 Martin briefly returned to writing novels and began what would eventually turn into his epic fantasy series: A Song of Ice and Fire, which was inspired by the Wars of the Roses and Ivanhoe. It is currently intended to comprise seven volumes, including Game of Thrones, A Song of Ice and Fire and A Feast for Crows, which became The New York Times No. 1 Bestseller and The Wall Street Journal no 1 bestseller. A Feast for Crows was also nominated for both a Quill Award and the British Fantasy Award. The fifth book Dance with Dragons, was published July 12, 2011, and quickly became an international bestseller, including achieving a No. 1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller List and In 2012, A Dance With Dragons made the final ballot for science fiction and fantasy’s Hugo Award, World Fantasy Award, Locus Poll Award, and the British Fantasy Award and won the Locus Poll Award for Best Fantasy Novel. There are Two more novels in the Ice and Fire series: The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring.

He is also a screenwriter and television producer andis best known for A Song of Ice and Fire, his international bestselling series of epic fantasy novels which HBO adapted for its dramatic series Game of thrones after acquiring the television rights for the entire Song of Ice and Fire series in 2007. Titled Game of Thrones, it ran weekly for ten episodes, each approximately an hour long.Although busy completing A Dance With Dragons and other projects, George R. R. Martin was heavily involved in the production of the television series adaptation of his books he also participated in scriptwriting; the opening credits list him as a co-executive producer of the series. The first season was nominated for 13 Emmy Awards, ultimately winning two, one for its opening title credits and one for Peter Dinklage as Best Supporting Actor.

The second season of ten episodes, based on the second Ice and Fire novel A Clash of Kings, was nominated for 12 Emmy Awards, including another Supporting Actor nomination for Dinklage. It went on to win six of those Emmys in the Technical Arts categories. The first season of 10 episodes was also nominated for a 2012 Hugo Award, fantasy and science fiction’s oldest award, presented by the World Science Fiction Society each year at the annual Worldcon; the show went on to win the 2012 Hugo for Best Dramatic Presentation, at the 70th World Science Fiction Convention, in Chicago, IL; Martin took home one of the three Hugo Award trophies. The second season episode “Blackwater”, written by George R.R. Martin, won the Hugo Award at the 71st World Science Fiction Convention, in San Antonio, Texas. Martin serves as the series’ co-executive producer, and In 2005 Lev Grossman of Time called Martin “the American Tolkien” and in 2011 Time Magazine listed him as one of the “most influential people in the world.”

Adam West (Batman)

Most famous for playing Batman in the 1960 Television show, the American actor Adam West was born September 19, 1928 West in Walla Walla, Washington. His father was a farmer; his mother was an opera singer and concert pianist who was forced to abandon her own Hollywood dreams to care for her family. Following her example, West stated to his father as a youth that he intended after school to go to Hollywood. He moved to Seattle when he was 15 with his mother following his parents’ divorce. West attended Walla Walla High School during his freshman and sophomore years, and later enrolled in Lakeside School in Seattle. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in literature and a minor in psychology from Whitman College in Walla Walla, where he was a member of the Gamma Zeta Chapter of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity. He also participated on the speech and debate team. Drafted into the United States Army, he served as an announcer on American Forces Network television. After his discharge, he worked as a milkman before moving to Hawaii to pursue television.

While in Hawaii, West was picked for a role as the sidekick on a children’s show called El Kini Popo Show, which featured a chimp. West later took over as star of the show. In 1959, West moved with his wife and two children to Hollywood, where he took the stage name Adam West. He appeared in the film The Young Philadelphians with Paul Newman, and guest-starred in a number of television Westerns Including Sugarfoot, Colt .45, and Lawman, in which West played the role of Doc Holliday, the frontier dentist and gunfighter. He portrayed Wild Bill Hickok in the episode “Westbound Stage” of the 1960 Western series Overland Trail, with William Bendix and Doug McClure. He guest-starred on the crime drama Johnny Midnight, as police sergeant Steve Nelson and also starred in the crime drama, The Detectives Starring Robert Taylor. He made a few guest appearances on the sitcom, The Real McCoys. In 1961, West appeared as a young, ambitious deputy who foolishly confronts a gunfighter named Clay Jackson, portrayed by Jock Mahoney, in the episode “The Man from Kansas” in the series Laramie and made two guest appearances on Perry Mason in 1961 first as small-town journalist Dan Southern in “The Case of the Barefaced Witness” then as folk singer Pete Norland in “The Case of the Bogus Books”. West starred in the Outer Limits episode “The Invisible Enemy” and made a brief appearance in the film Soldier in the Rain starring Jackie Gleason and Steve McQueen. He also starred as Major Dan McCready, the ill-fated mission commander of ‘Mars Gravity Probe 1’ in the 1964 film Robinson Crusoe on Mars. He also appeared in the comedy Western The Outlaws Is Coming in 1965, the last feature film starring The Three Stooges. He played Christopher Rolf in the episode “Stopover” in The Rifleman,

In 1965 Producer William Dozier cast West as Bruce Wayne and his crime fighting superhero alter ego, Batman, in the television series Batman, which ran from 1966 to 1968; and included afeature-length film version. In his Batman character, West appeared in a public service announcement where he encouraged schoolchildren to heed then-President Lyndon B. Johnson’s call for them to buy U.S. Savings stamps, a children’s version of U.S. Savings bonds, to support the Vietnam War. In 1970, West was offered the role of James Bond by Cubby Broccoli for the film Diamonds Are Forever.

After Batman finished Adam West’s first post-Caped Crusader role was in the film The Girl Who Knew Too Much (1969) as a cynical tough guy named Johnny Cain. West also made personal appearances as Batman. However In 1974, when Ward and Craig reprised their Batman roles for a TV public-service announcement about equal pay for women, West was absent. Instead, Dick Gautier filled in as Batman. He also made a memorable appearance in the Memphis, Tennessee-based United States Wrestling Association to engage in a war of words with Jerry “The King” Lawler while wearing the cowl and a track suit. West subsequently appeared in the theatrical films The Marriage of a Young Stockbrocker (1971), The Curse of the Moon Child (1972), The Specialist (1975), Hooper (as himself; 1978), The Happy Hooker Goes Hollywood (1980) and One Dark Night (1983 and appeared in such television films as The Eyes of Charles Sand (1972), Poor Devil (1973), Nevada Smith (1975), For the Love of It (1980) and I Take These Men (1983). He also did guest shots on the television series Maverick, Diagnosis: Murder, Love, American Style, Bonanza, The Big Valley, Night Gallery, Alias Smith and Jones, Mannix, Emergency!, Alice, Police Woman, Operation Petticoat, The American Girls, Vega$, Big Shamus Little Shamus, Laverne & Shirley, Bewitched, Fantasy Island, The Love Boat, Hart to Hart, Zorro, The King of Queens and George Lopez. West also made several guest appearances as himself on Family Feud and In 1986, West starred in the comedy police series titled The Last Precinct.

West often reprised his role as Batman/Bruce Wayne, first in the short-lived animated series, The New Adventures of Batman, and in other shows such as The Batman/ Tarzan Adventure Hour, Tarzan and the Super 7, Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show, and The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians. In 1979, West once again donned the Batsuit for the live-action TV special Legends of the Superheroes. In 1985, DC Comics named West as one of the honorees in the company’s 50th-anniversary publication Fifty Who Made DC Great for his work on the Batman series. West was considered to play Thomas Wayne in Tim Burton’s Batman. Originally, he wanted to play Batman. So far neither West nor Burt Ward (Robin, from the TV series) has appeared in any of the modern Batman films. West made an appearance in a 1992 episode of Batman: The Animated Series portraying Simon Trent, a washed-up actor who used to play a superhero in a TV series called The Gray Ghost and who now has difficulty finding work.

West later had a recurring role as the voice of Mayor Grange in the WB animated series The Batman. And also voiced as Batman in the animated short film Batman: New Times. He co-starred with Mark Hamill, who vocally portrayed The Joker and had originally played the role on Batman: The Animated Series. West also voiced Thomas Wayne, Bruce Wayne’s father, in an episode of the cartoon series Batman: The Brave and the Bold. He also voiced Batman’s prototype robot “Protobot”. West appeared as himself in the film Drop Dead Gorgeous and in several TV series, including NewsRadio, Murphy Brown, The Adventures of Pete and Pete, The Ben Stiller Show, and The Drew Carey Sho He also portrayed “Dr. Wayne” in the 1990 Zorro episode “The Wizard”. In 1991, he starred in the pilot episode of Lookwell, playing a has-been TV action hero who falsely believes he can solve mysteries in real life. In 1994, West played a non-comedic role as the father of Peter Weller’s character in The New Age. He played a washed-up superhero named Galloping Gazelle in the Goosebumps TV series episode “Attack of the Mutant”. In 1994, West, with Jeff Rovin, wrote his autobiography, Back to the Batcave and also appeared as a guest in the animated talk show Space Ghost Coast to Coast in an episode titled “Batmantis”, where he displayed his book. That episode was essentially a parody to his Batman TV series, where Zorak dressed himself as “Batmantis”, a praying mantis version of Batman.

In 1996, Adam West appeared in video cut scenes of the “Chaos Mystery” in the gambling simulation game Golden Nugget. In 2001, he played the super-villain Breathtaker in the TV series Black Scorpion. In 2003, West and Burt Ward starred in the TV movie Return to the Batcave: The Misadventures of Adam and Burt, alongside Frank Gorshin, Julie Newmar, and Lee Meriwether. In 2005, West appeared in the show The King of Queens. West appears in the 2006 video for California band STEFY’s song “Chelsea” as “Judge Adam West”, presiding over the courtroom scene. In 2007, Adam West played an attorney for Benny on the show George Lopez, and starred as “The Boss” in the movie comedy Sexina: Popstar PI. In 2009, West played himself in the episode “Apollo, Apollo” of 30 Rock. In 2010, a Golden Palm Star was dedicated to him on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars And West also received the 2,468th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, located at 6764 Hollywood Boulevard in front of the Guinness Museum in Hollywood, California. He appeared in Pioneers of Television in the episode “Superheroes” and was the subject of the documentary Starring Adam West.West is among the interview subjects in Superheroes: A Never-Ending Battle, a three-hour documentary narrated by Liev Schreiber.

West has also done voice-over work for many cartoons including the American cartoon series Futurama (10.9, and American Dad and voiced himself, and the 1960s version of Batman, in the video game Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham. In 2016, West guest-starred as himself on the 200th episode of The Big Bang Theory. West has also voiced The Simpsons, Futurama, Rugrats, The Critic, Histeria!, Kim Possible, Johnny Bravo, and even in an episode of Batman: The Animated Series called “Beware the Gray Ghost”, and has appeared onThe Fairly OddParents numerous timeS. Since 2000, West has made regular appearances on the animated series Family Guy, portraying Mayor Adam West, the lunatic mayor of Quahog, Rhode Island. He portrayed Uncle Art in the Disney Animation film Meet the Robinsons, and voicing the young Mermaid Man (along with Burt Ward, who voiced the young Barnacle Boy) in The SpongeBob SquarePants episode “Back to the Past” asThe Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy characters are sea parodies of both Batman and Robin, respectively.West also voiced General Carrington in the video game XIII, and has voiced other video games such as Marc Ecko’s Getting Up: Contents Under Pressure, Chicken Little: Ace in Action, Scooby Doo! Unmasked, and Goosebumps: Attack of the Mutant. Adam West sadly passed away 9 June 2017 However he leaves an enduring legacy behind.