Exploring abrupt climate change and pandemic induced by comets and asteroids during human history

Art imitates Tusk

NetFlix comet blockbuster most expensive production ever for studio

The cruel irony of this welcome movie should be apparent to Tusk regulars. A satirical blockbuster uses an impending comet impact as a plot device to communicate a deeper message to all humanity that no one listens to scientists who…warn us of climate change. The director reveals his narrative subtext in many interviews, and calls it here, “…the most thinly disguised metaphor in the history of metaphors.”

Don’t Look Up seems a misuse of artistic resources. From the Tusk’s perspective, anthropogenic climate change suffers from no lack of attention and deep concern. But the demonstrated threat of comets making earth a bad place in recent times (or more accurately comet ‘fragments,’ as in last year’s masterpiece Greenland) is almost entirely absent from the global mindspace.

Good gosh, earth’s leaders met in person last month on CO2 — it’s on the agenda. Space based threats by comparison are discussed, at best, as a fascinatingly unlikely example of shared global peril, and, at worst, mocked in movies.

(For the record, I believe humans affect the climate. But our global conversation on the topic seems to the Tusk like a couple arguing over the radio station — while their car is on the train tracks. The “peer threat” to carbon dioxide — cosmic impact — suffers from ignorance because it is hard to blame a Democrat or Republican for an incoming space object.)

In any case, the film does look really, really good, and is apparently the most expensive production in NetFlix history. Grudgingly, the attention to the comet threat is welcome anytime here at the Tusk, even if satire in pursuit of lesser agendas is not ideal.

7 Responses

  1. You have elucidated my thoughts entirely.

    However, I find myself in a position to, in some way, redress the balance – Orr at least that is the plan.

    I will be writing to you in a week or so but, in short, I am seeking advice, technical info & above all your personal perspective in regard to a storyline I am writing with a Director friend for a TV drama series.

    Having followed you (and all the guys) regarding your work on the YD impact for some years now, I very much suspect you will be interested in where we’re going.

    Keep up the good work.


  2. That trailer is making a joke of a seriously serious subject. Shame on them. It doesn’t deserve any more comment than that.

  3. As a counter, I recommend the British miniseries, ‘You, Me, and the Apocalypse’. It is entertaining without making light of the subject matter. Not available everywhere online, but it is out there.

  4. I don’t agree that doing a film that covers this genuinely important subject in such a way is shameful at all. First off, it’s satire, not comedy… and satire is one of the last avenues that television program and film makers have at their disposal to actually get people to think about serious issues these days.

    As you’re no doubt aware, networks like Discovery, History Channel and the like, have completely dropped the ball on intelligent programming. Their shows are now an ongoing insult to our intelligence, so what else is left for film makers who want to address topics like this and get it to ‘mainstream’ audiences? A serious documentary on Fox? No. ABC? CBS? NBC? No. No. And No again.

    I worked in science television production for over 30 years. Every ounce of passion I had for trying to give audiences intelligent and thought-provoking information has long been beaten out of me by the stupidity of the people who commission films, documentaries and factual television series.

    And believe me, in this day and age, the ‘mainstream media’ certainly doesn’t want their viewers to do anything as ‘difficult’ as think. Not good for ratings – or so the people who commission shows have come to believe. The twits.

    Still, I’m sure if we just add some more gratuitous sounds FX and a wall of completely overcooked music, then nobody will notice how absolutely rubbish the content really is. 😉

  5. Well, George, I’ve stayed away, but this calls for comment…

    The George Brown Jr amendment was passed in 2005, and NASA is slowly stepping up to the plate. You’re welcome…

    As far as global warming goes, both Gates and Myrvold are invested in nuclear reactors. funding next generation very safe plants. The tech solution to CO2 production, and an interesting PR problem…

    It is interesting to note the very different reactions the public has had to the problems. “Global Warming” took off as an issue, while the impact hazard remains lingering..but oh yes, we might have to use a nuke to stop an impactor, particularly if the current diversion studies flounder, and that may well explain the difference in the “public” reaction.

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