Commander Rick looks at the challenges, dangers and benefits of living in space according to science and speculative fiction authors. He also talks with some people who've been there: Nichelle Nichols talks about her work with recruiting for NASA, and Dr. Roberta Bondar talks about the medical problems of weightlessness.
This week, Commander Rick looks at the mythic quest, and discusses with his guests why this type of story has been so enduring and popular.
The comic book series that changed the face of comic book readers is the subject of Commander Rick's discussions this week. He talks about The Sandman with the author, Neil Gaiman, as well as cover and interior artists; Harlan Ellison also gives a tribute to the comic book.
Commander Rick examines how the devil has been presented in comics, speculative and science fiction as well as horror novels in his interview with guests.
This week Commander Rick takes a look at the games people play, and how they've played a part in science fiction, including the use of chess as a metaphor; the playing of poker in Star Trek; and role-playing games that the fans play.
Commander Rick talks with six instructors and four graduates of Clarion, the most well-known workshop for writers in the science ficiton and fantasy fields.
Commander Rick looks at the influence that J.R.R. Tolkien's trilogy, The Lord Of The Rings has had, and continues to have, on comics, science fiction and speculative fiction.
Commander Rick examines the future of medicine in discussions with science fiction and fact authors, and also talks about nanotechnology.
Commander Rick wonders about the role of memory in speculative fiction and comic books, asking the question of guests, "how much of who we are is the result of memory?" He also looks at how childhood memories help authors create the stories that they do.
Last week, Commander Rick talked about memory; this week, it's amnesia that is up for discussion with film makers and authors. He also discusses the idea of photographic, or eidetic memory with his guests.
This week, Commander Rick takes a look at the man (or woman) behind the mask, and examines the comic book tradition of the Alter Ego with his guests.
This week, Commander Rick examines the end of the world, and the fascination that science fiction writers and readers seem to have with it, as well as the post-apocalypse survivors who inhabit novels and comic books.
This week, Commander Rick looks into telepathy, and discusses some famous characters, such as Deanna Troi of Star Trek: The Next Generation, who have it and use it in science and speculative fiction.
Commander Rick discusses the way that gay and lesbian characters are portrayed in comics and speculative fiction with his guests. Included is a discussion with winners and nominees of the Lambda Awards, which are presented for excellence in the portrayal of gay characters.
This is a repeat of the season 4 episode paying tribute to Jack Kirby, in honour of his death on February 6th, 1994.
This week, Commander Rick pays tribute to Jack Kirby, whose art style changed the comic book world with Captain America in the early 1940s. With Stan Lee in the 1960s, Kirby also created The Fantastic Four, The Incredible Hulk, and Thor; these characters now form the basis of the Marvel Universe. Jack Kirby is praised and remembered by Commander Rick and his guests.
This week, Commander Rick examines the question: why are we so captivated by monsters? He tries to answer this question in his discussions with guests from the comic book, science fiction and horror worlds.
Commander Rick delves into the world of virtual reality this week, and discusses this topic with his guests from the science fiction and speculative fiction worlds, as well as non-fiction writers.
Commander Rick takes a look at fairy tales, and the authors who tell and retell them; he discusses the stock characters and themes with his guests.
This week Commander Rick examines the popularity of the vampire legend, and the women who are behind the resurgence of this genre.
Commander Rick discovers that even twenty years after the United States pulled out of the Vietnam War, the topic is still a hot one for comics and speculative fiction; he discusses this with his guests.
Commander Rick wonders what a Martian would really look like, and what sort of creatures we'd meet on Medea; he discusses the creation of alien races with science fiction authors and people who design creatures for movies.
This week, Commander Rick takes a look at how women are portrayed in science fiction and comics; this portrayal hasn't always been a positive one, but some authors are trying to change the situation. He also gets the low-down on the Barbie Liberation Organization.
This week, Commander Rick examines the art of crafting a comic book, and talks to some of the foremost people in the genre.
Commander Rick considers the workings of the human brain, and takes a look at the new frontiers of computer intelligence. He discusses these topics with his guests from the science fiction, non-fiction and computer programming fields.
Commander Rick looks at the question of where we go from here, and discusses that with science fiction and non-fiction authors.