Brrrrrr

We started to discuss some of the hottest and coldest scenes from science fiction.

Here are some of the coldest films and  tv episodes in sci fi:

From the Star Trek franchise there are at least two. The first is from the original series episode “All Our Yesterday’s.” The planet Sarapeidon has achieved the ability to send its inhabitants into the past. Apparently, as we learn later, at least one ruthless dictator in their past used this as a method for banishing enemies. However, in the present (of the episode that is), the remaining inhabitants are using this method to escape an imminent supernova that will engulf the planet. Spock and McCoy, while visiting the planet in order to assist in evacuation, accidentally get sent back 5000 years into the planet’s ice age.  Without protection from the cold, they suffer frostbite and nearly die, but are saved by Zarabeth, a woman who had been banished to that location years before. Eventually they make it back home, but boy, did they seemed chilled (especially McCoy)!

A second example comes from Star Trek VI, where Kirk and McCoy are initially sentenced to the frozen mining asteroid Rura Penthe. It’s essentially a Klingon penal colony, and they really don’t care if any one prisoner dies from the extreme cold!

Probably the coldest one I can recall is Space: 1999s “Deaths Other Dominion.” The Moonbase Alpha inhabitants (called Alphans) are hurled into space and eventually encounter the extremely cold planet, Ultima Thule. Several of them wander on the surface. The blinding snow and whipping, howling wind makes it impossible for them to find the sources of a signal from men who had been stranded on the planet many years before. Eventually, the Alphans are rescued by these men and taken to a much warmer cave (where apparently men still need to wear thick coats but women only need very very small animal skins that barely cover them).

In another cold one from Lost in Space, the Robinsons must escape the environment of an increasingly cold planet. Even their ship can’t keep them warm. So, they have a plan to head south (which shouldn’t work on this planet if the main reason for the extreme whether is the highly elliptical orbit of the planet, as suggested). They never really seem dangerously cold, but they are all wearing parkas!

And do take a look at my book on related subjects, The Physics and Astronomy of Science Fiction (published by McFarland). Its available through almost all electronic booksellers and the publisher (mcfarlandpub.com).

Steve Bloom

Hampden-Sydney College

 

 

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