Q. What is Sci-Fi?
Science Fiction, also abbreviated to Sci-Fi, is a genre of fiction that combines science with technology of the future. Although these stories of this genre involve partially true laws of science, they veer into the realm of fantasy. Situations can be inspired from the past to the present to even the future. Science fiction always has a human element and the plots are always placed in the future, in space and at times, even on a different planet, universe or dimension.
Q. How popular is the Sci-Fi genre?
Science Fiction comics were first published as early as the 1930’s in America and has since spread all over the world. The largest publishers of this genre exist in Japan and the US.
Q. What was the first science fiction comic released?
The first science fiction was the gag cartoon Mr. Skygack, from Mars by A.D. Condo which was published in newspapers in 1907. The first non-humorous science fiction comic strip Buck Rogers was published in 1929. More stories followed in quick succession after Buck Rogers like Flash Gordon, Brick Bradford and DanDare.
Q. What are the different subgenres of Science Fiction?
Since Fiction is a wide genre and has subgenres like fantasy, alternate history, horror, time travel, solitary science fiction, hard science fiction, soft science fiction, cyberpunk, apocalyptic and post apocalyptic fiction.
Q. How are graphic novels different from comics?
They’re both very different – so much so that if you ask someone who’s reading a graphic novel if they’re into comic books, you’re bound to get an extremely dirty look. To anyone who’s into graphic novels, the difference is as stark as night and day. Firstly, graphic novels are longer, more complex and most of the storylines get over in two or three books instead of comic books which stretch out the stories over a series of books.
Although they may look similar, their story mediums are quite different. Both use a combination of illustrations and text to tell the story. The content may be similar but the presentation is different. Surprisingly, the graphic novel came before the comic book when the first graphic novel was published in 1783 which was an adaptation of Gottfried August Burger’s Lenardo und Blandine.
Q. I’m new to the science fiction genre. What series would you recommend to start with?
Isaac Asimov is a famous author and his Foundation series may be a good place to start. It’s a series of short stories and novels and involves robots and covers 20,000 years of human history in 13 books. It won’t be too much of a jump for you as it is based on the history of Rome which is somewhat familiar. There are certain stories that have been adapted into movies that you may have watched, so those may a good place to start. Examples are The Space Odyssey series by Arthur C. Clarke or even Philip K. Dick whose novels inspired movies like Blade Runner, Minority Report and Total Recall.