Sunday, May 31, 2009

Incoming: Earth 2100

ABC is looking to scare the crap outta everyone this Tuesday evening. At 9pm the network will air an ABC News Special entitled Earth 2100. The two hour special is said to feature the world's top experts talking about what could become the human population by the year 2100 without a significant shift in our attitudes about global warming and the environment.

The main description put forth by the network, "Experts say over the next hundred years the "perfect storm" of population growth, resource depletion and climate change could converge with catastrophic results.", is just the intro to a three page press release that reads a lot like an essay.

The special will revolve around segments featuring a fictional character by the name of "Lucy", who will experience each of the disasters first hand. Lucy is born June 2, 2009 and the stories are told by her, at age 91. The segments are drawn in a graphic novel style, which does actually look kind of cool.

These fictional segments will be joined by the experts interviews and some user created fictional videos. You can get a better idea of what I'm talking about and a peak at the artwork with this video (damn you ABC for not allowing embedding!):

Nature's Edge: 'Earth 2100'

The user created videos, while professional looking, and maybe accurate for all we know, come off as overly dramatic and disturbingly desperate. Like B-Rate apocalypse films. I think it's the voices, mainly. One well done piece, about a mega virus that finally kills off the majority of the human race could be considered kinda cool, until the narrator, probably the user who created it, ruins it all with his overly dramatic, extremely terrible voice acting.

It's not all his fault,though, as beside him there are two other actors with speaking parts in the short piece and they're both terrible as well.

We knew it was only a matter of time that a major network would create a show like this. The World Without Us, a great book by the way, was published a couple of years ago and History channel followed that up with their Life After People special (which was a great way to get around having to pay the author) a few months later, which has spanned into it's weekly Life After People series that starting airing a month or two ago.

Don't get me wrong, as I said I liked the book and watch the show weekly. I enjoy apocalyptic books, films and tv shows, but I'm wondering if this should be network news territory...Actually, I'm really not wondering. A network documentary special, maybe, but not a news special.

I'm also not looking forward to hearing the conservative reactions. They'll come around the next day, like they did when The Day After Tomorrow was first released with their claims of liberal scare tactics and what-not and all the major news sources will follow up with experts of their own to backup which ever side they choose.

Sounds like a pretty good deal for ABC, though, doesn't it?

You can read the press release/essay, read some related stories and watched a lot of video clips from the show on the ABC News website.

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