Customer Review

January 13, 2013
It's odd that I love Star Trek and can reference it in detail (I get all of "The Big Bang Theory" jokes). However I never read science fiction; perhaps because other treatments are humourless and pessimistic. It may be actors that give these realms personality. I might not enjoy Star Trek on paper either, or maybe it is uniquely hopeful for the science fiction genre.

I gave "Dark They Were & Golden-Eyed" a whirl because it's short but stand firm that Ray Bradbury's perspective is bleak. Were it a film, it would be chilling. Dark outcomes can be poignant too; even if this was not my cup of tea. I issue three stars because it is cleverly composed. If storyline elements resemble anything we've encountered before, keep in mind that this emerged in 1949 and was likely first of its kind. Ray introduces a future where we find abandoned towns on Mars, claim, and re-name the region. We form small colonies and try our hand at living there a year or so.

The 'Bitterings', a couple with children, join the fad. The man is too leery to ingest any food except what they brought from Earth and rapidly changes his mind. However they receive word that the space-worthy shuttles at home are destroyed. Until they're re-built, no one can give them a ride back. Paired with the despair of being stuck, are unnerving observations that the empty terrain might be potent. Earth plants take on peculiar colours which leads to an understandable concern: could another planet change our biology too? One might be satisfied with the way things unfurl if they're a 'go with the flow' person. For believers in 'staying true to yourself', it would amount to horror. I dislike this kind of story but appreciate Ray Bradbury's creativity.
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Product Details

3.8 out of 5 stars