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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 18 May 2022
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Varan the Unbelievable

Film (1958; 1962 US). Original Japanese title Daikaijū Baran. Dallas Productions Inc/Toho Company (uncredited)/Crown International Pictures. Produced by Jerry A Baerwitz. Directed by Baerwitz and Ishro Honda (uncredited). Written by Sid Harris from a story by Ken Kuronuma and Shi'ichi Sekizama (uncredited). Cast includes Myron Healey, Clifford Kawada and Tsuruko Kobayashi. 70 minutes. Black and white. / US naval commander James Bradley (Healey) is in charge of a project on an Island ...

Black Magic M-66

Japanese Original Video Animation (OVA) (1987). Based on the Manga by Masamune Shirow. AIC. Directed by Hiroyuki Kitakubo. Written by Masamune Shirow. Voice cast includes Ichiro Nagai, Yoshiko Sakakibara and Chisa Yokoyama. 47 minutes. Colour. / When a sabotaged military aircraft crashes into a forest, the two M-66 anti-personnel automated soldiers (see Androids) it carries escape. Created by Professor Matthew (Nagai), these were loaded with an experimental assassination program: as it was ...

Back to the Future Part II

Film (1989). Amblin Entertainment/Universal. Directed by Robert Zemeckis, with Steven Spielberg among the executive producers. Cast includes Michael J Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson and Thomas F Wilson. Written by Bob Gale, based on a story by Zemeckis and Gale. 108 minutes. Colour. / Panned by many critics as a typically disappointing follow-up to Back to the Future (1985), in part because its plot remains unresolved at the end, this film and Back to the Future Part III can properly ...

Fan Language

Sf enthusiasts, in common with other groups, have evolved their own terminology and usage. This language comprises words and phrases used in the writing of sf itself and also the more arcane and whimsical jargon of Fandom and Fanzines. / Most sf readers are familiar with the shorthand of their literature, and words like Spaceship, Robot, Time Machine, Force Field and even FTL (Faster Than Light drive), Ray Gun and Space Warp need little or no glossing. These words, however, originated in sf ...

Out of This World Adventures

1. US Pulp magazine. Two issues, July 1950 and December 1950, published by Avon Periodicals; edited by Donald A Wollheim. The first issue included an impressive line-up of authors: A Bertram Chandler, Ray Cummings, Lester del Rey, Kris Neville, Mack Reynolds and A E van Vogt. The stories, however, were not the authors' best, and if any story stands out as memorable, if unpronounceable, it is "The Puzzle of Priipiirii" (July 1950) by William Tenn, where humans struggle to solve the mystery of a ...

Nicholls, Peter

(1939-2018) Australian editor and author, primarily a critic and historian of sf through his creation and editing of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction [see below]; resident in the UK 1970-1988, in Australia from 1988; worked as an academic in English literature (1962-1968, 1971-1977), scripted television documentaries, was a Harkness Fellow in Film-making (1968-1970) in the USA, worked as a publisher's editor (1982-1983), often broadcast film and book reviews on BBC Radio from 1974 and ...



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