On my 30th birthday I reflected on how happy I am that the premise of Logan’s Run isn’t reality. In this great 70s sci-fi cult flick, starring the excellent Michael York (of Gilmore Girls fame & some other stuff) as well as 70s hotties Jenny Agutter and Farrah Fawcett, the futuristic post-nuclear society has decided to maintain population control by sending each person who turns 30 on some wheel thingy called Carrousel (DVD box spelling).
Carrousel is supposed to be a meaningful ‘ride’ that reincarnates people into newborns, which is really a bad deal if you consider that one would have to go through the stress of high school again. In all actuality, the Carrousel thingy is just killing every new 30 year-old who gets on it, thus making the movie a great gift for each friend of mine who turns 30 and isn‘t already depressed. Especially the single ones. I will be getting it for one of my brothers very soon.
In the movie, which is being remade (yes!) by Warner Brothers for an upcoming release starring Ryan Gosling, all the people in the society are fitted with giants dots on their palms called life clocks that glow green when you‘re still young, then blink red when time is up. I’m not sure why they didn’t bother with calendars, but with a giant dot, hours of fun can be spent contemplating how much time you have left before you die. I‘m thinking of fitting my grandparents with them, if only to schedule my vacations better.
The idea of population control is sort of an interesting one. A few years ago I was kidnapped to a peace museum which, as one would guess, is antiwar, but for some reason had an exhibit showing the increasingly rapid growth of the world‘s population, and apparently seemed to promote population control (they’re trying to have their cake and eat it, too). It occurs to me that pro-population control and anti-war ideas seem to be somewhat at odds with one another, but maybe that‘s just me. It would seem that war would be one of the best ways to implement population control. Or birth limits a la China. Or inadvertent single living.
As of 2004, there were just under 6.5 billion people in the world and a recent alarmist study suggested that by 2050 there should be approximately 8.9 billion on our planet living elbow to elbow, though maybe they’ll mostly hang out in New York and Beijing. These results assume continuation of the status quo and current trends: declining fertility rates, better disease preventions and treatments, lack of severe climate changes or major catastrophes like nuclear holocausts or biological warfare or the seven plagues.
I think, under these circumstances, it would definitely be in our best interest to change the environments and climates of deserts and other arid regions making them cooler and more habitable, with lusher flora and groovier fauna. Grow fruit trees. Maybe add spidermonkeys. These would be great incentives for people to start spreading out to currently undesirable areas such as the Sahara, Death Valley, Nevada, and Utah. Perhaps, like others in these regions, families could become polygamous and load the population under one roof. And have pet spidermonkeys in the orchards. Aren’t you surprised you haven’t thought of it?
In Logan’s Run the entire society was marriageless. Everybody belonged to everyone else, like in some of the finest cults. It seems the author’s vision of a futuristic Utopia is actually universal bachelordom. I suppose, as a single person, I’m doing my part to help with population control. I knew it was all very useful for something.
The secret word is Euthanasia.
Vaguely Related Reading:
Get updates from the Domesticated Bachelor through RSS or link to one of the buttons below! Do it!