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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

Site updated on 20 May 2022
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Back to the Future

Film (1985). Amblin Entertainment/Universal. Directed by Robert Zemeckis, Steven Spielberg among the executive producers. Written by Zemeckis, Bob Gale. Cast includes Michael J Fox, Crispin Glover, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson and Thomas F Wilson. 116 minutes. Colour. / One of the major sf hits of the 1980s, Back to the Future is a disarming, calculated and intelligent comedy about Time Travel. Teenage guitar-playing Marty (Fox), son of a tacky and ineffectual mother and father (Thompson ...

Avallone, Michael

(1924-1999) US author active since the early 1950s under a number of names in various genres, most active in the 1960s. Although he began publishing genre fiction with "The Man Who Walked on Air" (September 1953 Weird Tales), and though some stories of mild interest appear in Tales of the Frightened (coll 1963; vt Boris Karloff Presents Tales of the Frightened 1973) (see also Lyle Kenyon Engel), his sf is comparatively limited in amount and extremely borderline in nature, usually being ...

DC Comics

US Comic-book publishing company, based in New York, owing much of its commercial success to its ownership of the copyrights in the Superheroes Batman, who it has been argued is not perhaps quite an sf figure, and Superman, who undoubtedly is. / In February 1935 Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson published the first US comic book to contain all-new material rather than reprints from newspaper comics sections. His comic book, New Fun, ran for five issues February-October 1935, and was reborn in ...

Pratt, Cornelia Atwood

Working and maiden name of Cornelia Atwood Comer (1865-1929), author with Richard Slee of Dr Berkeley's Discovery (1899), in which the titular pathologist solves a mystery with his memory-cell-reading device (see Psychology). In an early variation on the Urban Legend that a dead person's retinas retain the last image seen, this Invention recovers latent visual images from the murder victim's brain tissue. [JC/DRL]

Maeda Kensetsu

Maeda Kensetsu Kōgyō Kabushiki-kaisha ["Maeda Construction and Manufacturing Limited"], a Japanese building and civil engineering company, established in 1919, credited with many large-scale dams, tunnels and railway lines in Japan and other parts of Asia. Notable here for its Fantasy Eigyō-bu ["Fantasy Marketing Department"], a fake division set up as a public relations and recruitment exercise circa 2003, for which the corporation's engineers and managers would treat science ...

Clute, John

(1940-    ) Canadian critic, editor and author, in the UK from 1969; married to Judith Clute from 1964, partner of Elizabeth Hand since 1996. His first professional publication was the long sf-tinged poem "Carcajou Lament" (Winter 1960 [ie Autumn 1959] Triquarterly), though he only began publishing sf reviews in 1964 and sf proper with "A Man Must Die" in New Worlds for November 1966, where much of his earlier criticism also appeared. This criticism, despite some studiously ...

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