Imaginary Worlds

Eric Molinsky

+82 FANS
Imaginary Worlds is a bi-weekly podcast about science fiction and other fantasy genres. Host Eric Molinsky talks with novelists, screenwriters, comic book artists, filmmakers, and game designers about their craft of creating fictional worlds. The sho...Show More
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32:35 | Apr 3rd

The Hero's Journey has dominated sci-fi fantasy storytelling for over 40 years. Have the storytelling formula reached a saturation point?
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32:15 | Nov 1st, 2018

Science fiction has not always been compatible with religion -- in fact many futuristic settings imagine no religion at all. But sci-fi and fantasy have long fascinated people of different faiths because the genres wrestle with the big questions of l...Show More
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27:25 | May 29th

Harley Quinn began as a sidekick to a villain, and found her way to the heart of the DC canon and fandoms around the world. But to do so, she needed to dump a very toxic boyfriend.

28:42 | May 1st

In part one of our mini-series on sidekicks, we look at the enduring appeal of character that has gone through world wars, massive technological and social changes and the alleged death of his partner -- but Doctor Watson is forever loyal to Sherlock...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

29:18 | Jun 27th, 2018

The writer Neil Gaiman first became entranced with Fahrenheit 451 as a kid, but he says the novel is the kind of masterpiece that seems like a different story every time you read it depending on where you are in life, or in history. I also talk with ...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

31:44 | Feb 22nd, 2018

They may not look scary to you, but the monsters on Doctor Who have scared generations of children to the point where hiding "behind the sofa" has become a meme in the UK. When I first started watching the show, I was baffled by one particular villai...Show More
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29:32 | Feb 8th, 2018

If The Doctor offered you a spot traveling with him on his spaceship/time machine The TARDIS, would you go? Would you still go if you knew what happened to all his previous companions? For many Doctor Who fans the answer to both questions is unequivo...Show More
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25:28 | Nov 16th, 2017

The military shows up in a lot of sci-fi and fantasy stories but the subgenre of military SF depicts soldiers holding their own in fantastical situations without needing superheroes to save the day. Many military SF authors have served in the armed f...Show More
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27:21 | Oct 19th, 2017

The Haunted Mansion is one of the most beloved rides at the Disney theme parks, yet its development was anything but smooth. Walt Disney himself could never decide if the ride should be funny or scary, so he assigned "Imagineers" to develop both aspe...Show More
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21:56 | Oct 5th, 2017

In the second of my two-part episode on musical worlds, I talk with Mega Ran and Sammus -- hip hop artists that create concept albums based on the classic video games Mega Man and Metroid. They talk about the challenge of creating an imaginary world ...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

25:04 | Sep 7th, 2017

This week, I team up with Helen Zaltzman of The Allusionist podcast to help me figure out why one set of poorly understood pseudo-scientific terms can sink a scene, while another set of pseudo-scientific phrases can sell a sci-fi concept. We'll hear ...Show More

20:21 | Feb 22nd, 2017

Cosplay has gotten huge in the age of social media, but when websites feature their ComicCon slides shows, they often don't reflect the true diversity of the fans. So black Cosplayers created their own hashtag #28DaysofBlackCosplay (although it was #...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

27:46 | Feb 8th, 2017

Sam Kaden Lai takes the wheel of this episode of Imaginary Worlds to tell the story of how Avatar: The Last Airbender and its sequel series on Nickelodeon, The Legend of Korra, redefined the Asian-American experience for him and his friends -- even t...Show More
ARCHIVED: The podcast creator has made this episode no longer available for listening.

19:59 | Dec 29th, 2016

In memory of Carrie Fisher, I'm replaying my episode Slave Leia from last year's Star Wars series. For a while, the gold metal bikini that Princess Leia wore in Return of the Jedi had become the dominant image of her from action figures to Cosplay. B...Show More

26:12 | Dec 12th

They took over the world. They crushed our heroes. Now they feel bad. What does it take for a villain to be redeemed -- and what does it take for us to forgive them?

22:59 | Nov 27th

Taking over the world is so passé. The most popular villains want to save the world –- at a cost. What does the rise of the woke villain say about our frustrations with the real world?

34:16 | Nov 14th

Ron Moore's new show For All Mankind imagines what if the Soviet Union landed a man on the moon first -- and what if that nightmare scenario forced NASA to be more inclusive than it was in real history?

34:53 | Oct 30th

Think of an alien abduction. Humanoid creatures. Medical experiments. Missing time. Hypnosis. But years before The X-Files, that narrative was largely unknown until Betty and Barney Hill went public about their alien abduction.

29:43 | Oct 16th

In Jason Suran’s show The Other Side, he keeps reminding the audience that he cannot talk to the dead. Then why does he do such a good job of convincing us that he can?

26:40 | Oct 2nd

In 1954, director Ishiro Honda and composer Akira Ifukube disagreed about what Godzilla represented, but their collaboration added layers of depth that helped turn a monster into an icon.

35:17 | Sep 18th

Neon Genesis Evangelion ran only one year in Japan but more than 20 years later, the series and its subsequent movies are still creating ripple effects across global pop culture.

29:46 | Sep 4th

Disney’s “live action” remakes of their classic films are a box office bonanza. But will they spark nostalgia not only for the originals, but for the lost art of hand drawn feature animation in Hollywood?

24:29 | Aug 21st

After listening to this episode, you'll never watch movie trailers the same way again.

29:26 | Aug 7th

Mexican wrestling (aka Lucha Libre) has a lot in common with the superhero genre. But trying to be a superhero has its own set of challenges in real life.

30:31 | Jul 25th

Legendary audio drama producer Dirk Maggs reveals tricks of the trade he used to bring The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Alien, The X-Files and other stories to life.

32:43 | Jul 11th

The Undertaker has dominated the WWE for decades -- but he’s also a throwback to a different era of wrestling when a supernatural character could reign supreme. So what is the secret to The Deadman's appeal?

29:34 | Jun 26th

The sci-fi fantasy market is a hot commodity, but it’s also drawn in swindlers with the skills to create fake props and believable backstories about who made them – robbing the fans financially and emotionally.

26:09 | Jun 12th

Burlesque and geek culture have merged to create a new art form.

30:25 | May 15th

There wasn’t anything authentic about Tonto and Kato, but that didn’t matter to the audiences who enjoyed their team-ups with The Lone Ranger and The Green Hornet. But embodying those sidekicks was a lot more challenging for the actors Jay Silverheel...Show More

35:33 | Apr 17th

Rod Serling's voice is still speaking to us well beyond The Twilight Zone.