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By S. MacArthur

Gothic technology Fiction explores the attention-grabbing global of gothic encouraged technological know-how fiction. From Frankenstein to surgeon Who and from H.G Wells to Stephen King, the publication charts the increase of a style and follows the descent into darkness that consumes it.

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The residents of the house comprise of a seemingly eccentric master of the house – who, as the story unfolds, is revealed to be anything but eccentric – a bizarre butler and suspicious domestics, a vague lady of the house and a much younger female relative. The Americans in contrast are shown to be brave, intelligent and cunning in the face of the madness of Dr Sangre whose true nature is revealed in the penultimate scenes of the film as he is shown revelling in Voodoo and hypnosis as he tries to uncover war secrets from the obviously distressed and maltreated Admiral Wainwright.

In a post-war society the film captures perfectly the need for order and control, but it also displays with brutal clarity the very real dangers of such blinkered vision. A landmark in terms of its exploration into the world of robotics, Lang’s film is also hugely important in that visually at least it helped to cement the blueprint for both the image of the Mad Scientist and his laboratory; the secret world that he inhabits. The first Mad Scientist to debut on the big screen was Frankenstein in Thomas Edison’s 1910 film interpretation of Shelley’s novel.

Those who watched the Terminator series of films (specifically Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines) will remember the point at which the military defence system Skynet becomes self-aware and threatens to destroy humankind and wipe out its creators in the process. In a similar fashion Davros, creator of the Dalek race, is set upon by his protégées as he is exterminated once they realise that he is simply surplus to requirements. A similar theme governs the plot of 2004 box office smash I, Robot. Based on the short story of the same name by Isaac Asimov, both the book and the film follow the attempts made by the robots (under the influence of artificially intelligent controller VIKI) to break out of their role as public servants and, by careful manipulation of the first law of robotics, strengthen the human race by the eradication of the weak amongst them.

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