8 Badass Sci-Fi Predictions That Came True In Lame-Ass Ways
Ray GunsWhat We Were Promised: Forget gun control, bullets will be obsolete once we get our hands on an ion-spitting, atomic-powered, soul-searing plasma cannon. From Han Solo’s handy blaster to Kirk’s minimalist phaser (complete with multiple firing modes), the laser gun has become so intrinsic to our vision of the future that we created laser tag just so our children could train in their usage, in preparation for the inevitable laser wars of 2013. The ray gun is proof positive that while mankind may have enough collective imagination to envision a futuristic multi-verse where vast empires slug it out on the galactic scale, we aren’t quite up to imagining doing so with anything other than a good old-fashioned, pleasantly phallic six-gun in our hands.
Food PillsWhat We Were Promised: There’s nothing more passé than eating food. We’ve been doing it for thousands of years now, and it’s time to move on. Soon enough, the only people shoveling food into their mouths will be out-of-touch Neanderthals watching tumbleweeds roll by at the abandoned food court. Meanwhile, the rest of us will be popping protein pills by the handful, saving us enough time to read books describing how stuff used to taste back in the primitive days.
Moving Sidewalks/Transport Tubes
The Fountain of YouthWhat We Were Promised: Health, beauty, strength, longevity, and, in some cases, immortality. Whether you rubbed it on your skin, ingested it, prayed to it, soaked in it, or shot it directly into your eyeball, it keeps you alive longer and that makes it all worth while. After all, you’re going to want as many good years as possible battling the zombie plague that has overrun the scorched and desolate Earth. Even better, unlike the medicines of today, futurejuice has no unsightly or painful side effects (unless you count the crushing loneliness of watching everyone you know and love perish while you live on).
Virtual RealityWhat We Were Promised: That even if none of the other wondrous future technologies materialized, at least we’d be able to pretend they existed in a really meaningful way. We demand the kind of total immersion that will make us forget our family, job, and life, and spend the rest of our days soaring over fantasy worlds on the back of a majestic griffin. You know, like
Flying CarsWhat We Were Promised: Cars. That fly. Is it that difficult a concept? It’s not like we’re asking for a fishing pole that fits in our pocket, or a television capable of cooking a brisket (although that would be nice). We’ve got flying things, we’ve got cars. Some simple arithmetic yields screaming streaks of red and chrome cavorting overhead at Mach speed. Or dozens of fatal mid-air collisions a day. You know, whichever.
RobotsWhat We Were Promised: A compliant subclass of laborers who tackle every chore with cheerful precision, acquiesce to our every fantasy no matter how perverted, and band together in a bloody uprising only occasionally. Frankly, an uprising would almost be worth it if the robot fantasy finally paid off in all of its many variations: the robot maid, worker, pet, child, lover, et al. And besides, when the uprising
A Globally Unified SocietyWhat We Were Promised: What better way to use all these vacuum tubes and ray guns than the formation of a pan-global mishmash of human cultures and customs? Politics, race relations and language barriers will finally be blended into a monotonous gray paste, for better or (just as often) worse. Combining all of the world’s countries into one monolithic mega-state not only presents a united front to alien invaders and cuts out all the hassle of a transparent government responsible to the people, it also saves the future’s map and flag makers countless hours of work.
When not writing for Cracked, Michael takes far too long to produce sketches as head writer and co-founder of Those Aren't Muskets!