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Thread: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

  1. #21
    Phil Davis Cold Fuzz's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by Flyboy View Post
    I prefer to think it's more morally complex - it strives to create a much more realistic portrayal of events, acknowledging that the 'square jawed all-American hero' does not exist, and that good men can do bad things and vice versa.

    I for one appreciate this. It's not morally ambiguous but focuses on the actions, rather than the person.

    In more morally complex television, a man is good not because of what 'side' he's on, but how he behaves.

    I'd suggest that this could stem from having moved away from the Cold War mentality that dogged the latter half of the 20th century. Back then, even in the real world we had overly simplified views of the good guys and the bad guys. Today's threat & security environment is acknowledged as much more complex than the manner in which the Cold War was perceived, so naturally as is our entertainment.
    Excellent insights, especially on the possible ties to the Cold War. I also appreciate more complex--"grey"--characters as they're considerably more true-to-life. Such characters are especially prevalent in situations involving politics. Remember the big debate the SGU episode "Seizure" caused? I personally loved that episode because it showed the darker, more realistic side of military operations. Black ops, which is what the Stargate program essentially is, is not a pretty scene sometimes.

    If Stargate Command had been successful in establishing a wormhole to Destiny, the whole thing could've been chalked up to "the ends justify the means." But they weren't successful. The whole thing almost literally blew up in their faces and the situation was considered a terrible political debacle instead. If SGU had continued, I would've wanted to see the political fallout from that situation because, well, such things interest me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zombies Rise from the Sea View Post
    I think it's a natural shift in the environment; I mean morally ambiguity provides more characterization and depth then the usual good/evil characters. While it worked in shows like Star Trek: TNG; it doesn't seem to work later on where shows like Lost seemed to signal a shift towards moral ambiguity and more dramatic situations.

    Sure, there may have been moral ambiguity in the 90's but it was buried between the mainstream good/evil. I guess it's all a matter of the who can make the show that changes it all.
    Babylon 5 had its "grey" moments too. In season 4, Sheridan used 30 telepaths as weapons to easily disable 30 warships without a firefight. That maneuver ostensibly saved nearly 30,000 people. However, in doing so, he condemned 30 telepaths (who were a danger to themselves and others) to death. Such moments happened in Deep Space 9 as well, especially when Capt. Sisko deceived the Romulans into entering the war against the Dominion. That was some excellent writing and character building for both series because it showed the lead characters not being the "white knight." Both characters were involved massive conflicts and had to resort to extra-legal means to resolve their situations for the greater good.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mighty 6 platoon View Post
    Because it's simplistic garbage that does not reflect the world we live in, or to be honest the world at any point. And I say this as someone who does believes that even today, counties like the U.S and the U.K are the "good guys," but we aren’t angels by any stretch of the imagination.
    Very well said. I know some deputies and park rangers at work who are really great people but are ridiculously lax in their application of the law and are arguably not doing their jobs as they should. Conversely, there's a couple of rangers and deputies who come off as not the nicest people sometimes but are absolutely top-notch in their zeal and performance. They're no angels but they're definitely the good guys.

    I'm not a fan of "black and white" characters at all these days. That's not the way the world is. My idea of escapism is Game of Thrones on HBO and GRRM's books.
    Last edited by Cold Fuzz; March 24th, 2012 at 01:32 AM.


  2. #22
    First Lieutenant
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mighty 6 platoon View Post
    Yeah, I think you and I have quite a difference of opinion on how the world works. Children have a simplistic and incomplete world view because they have yet to fully understand or truly grasp the nature of the world. I don't think children see the world as endless possibilities. I think that they're simple and narrow minded view of the world actually limits the possibilities they can imagine.
    "Children have a simplistic and incomplete world view" no they have an incomplete version of your world view

    "I don't think children see the world as endless possibilities. I think that they're simple and narrow minded view of the world actually limits the possibilities they can imagine" they do it's just that the tragedy of childhood is that at this stage when you have limitless imagination you lack the necessary skills to do any thing with it

  3. #23
    General maneth's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    People look for different things in entertainment and enjoy different things. Can't we just leave it at that before this thread deteriorates into a fight?
    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v106/manephelien/avatars/deadtribbles.jpg

  4. #24
    First Lieutenant
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by maneth View Post
    People look for different things in entertainment and enjoy different things. Can't we just leave it at that before this thread deteriorates into a fight?
    it's not about entertainment and enjoyment, it's about art

  5. #25
    First Lieutenant Shpinxinator's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    I wouldn't say TV has become morally ambiguous...I think Morality has become morally ambiguous
    "I'm being extremely clever up here and there's no one to stand around looking impressed! What's the point in having you all?!" - The Doctor (#11)

  6. #26
    Major Ukko's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by maneth View Post
    People look for different things in entertainment and enjoy different things. Can't we just leave it at that before this thread deteriorates into a fight?
    No! CAPITAL LETTERS WITH TOO MANY EXCLAMATION MARKS!!!!!!! ANGER!!!

  7. #27
    General maneth's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by slimjim View Post
    it's not about entertainment and enjoyment, it's about art
    Same thing applies.
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  8. #28
    Lieutenant Colonel
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by slimjim View Post
    "Children have a simplistic and incomplete world view" no they have an incomplete version of your world view

    "I don't think children see the world as endless possibilities. I think that they're simple and narrow minded view of the world actually limits the possibilities they can imagine" they do it's just that the tragedy of childhood is that at this stage when you have limitless imagination you lack the necessary skills to do any thing with it
    Children do not have an infinite imagination. They are for the most part, selfish little hedonists, defining good as things that help them or that they enjoy, and evil as that negatively impacts their own pleasure.

    Their imaginations are very much centred on themselves and limited. How to explain concepts like Transhumanism or the technological singularity to a child? How do they even grasp the implications of those concepts?

    As I said I think you and I have wildly differing viewpoints on the way the world works, or how children think. But to get back to the original point of the thread, as I said in an earlier post,
    Quote Originally Posted by The Mighty 6 platoon View Post
    It's also clear that with the declining number of escapist shows, and the rise of much darker, grimmer fare, that the general tv audience desire for escapism is in decline and they are much more interested in more mature shows.

  9. #29
    Colonel knowles2's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by maneth View Post
    People look for different things in entertainment and enjoy different things. Can't we just leave it at that before this thread deteriorates into a fight?
    We are not having a fight, we are having a mature discussion.

  10. #30
    General maneth's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    I hope it stays that way.
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  11. #31
    First Lieutenant
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mighty 6 platoon View Post
    Children do not have an infinite imagination. They are for the most part, selfish little hedonists, defining good as things that help them or that they enjoy, and evil as that negatively impacts their own pleasure.
    I never said children where perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by The Mighty 6 platoon View Post
    Their imaginations are very much centred on themselves and limited. How to explain concepts like Transhumanism or the technological singularity to a child? How do they even grasp the implications of those concepts?
    it's limited only by their understanding, an adult has the understanding but their imagination is limited in too many other ways by that point for them to get the full benefit

  12. #32
    Colonel
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    I wouldn't say sci-fi in general is more morally ambiguous, but TV certainly has made that shift to a more adult perspective. I think though that it's something literary and cinematic sci-fi offerings have long had. I still don't think TV is there yet though, it's still played relatively safe.

  13. #33
    Captain Zombies Rise from the Sea's Avatar
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    Default Re: is TV especially sci-fi, a lot more morally ambiguous then it was over 10 years?

    Quote Originally Posted by slimjim View Post
    it's limited only by their understanding, an adult has the understanding but their imagination is limited in too many other ways by that point for them to get the full benefit
    I doubt that'd be true; there are certain people who have both the imagination and the understanding and get the full benefit at the same time.

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