‘How to tell if it’s a Japanese science fiction film’ (silly illo, above) may be true for Japanese films but it’s also true for American films. One of the reasons Monsters was so unique and refreshing was because it took real-world issues (immigration and border control between the USA and Mexico) and spoofed them in a dramatic story about a border crossing. District 9 was brilliant because it subverted expectations including in the setting: South Africa. Most other movies from Hollywood involve New York, DC, San Francisco or Los Angeles as the primary focus of alien invasion.
Food for thought.
Ian Gunn, creator of these silly illos (illustrations), was a beloved award-winning artist based in Melbourne. Cancer took him from us too soon.
Ian left a legacy including lots of great illustrations. Many of these illustrations are available for sale.
Victoria’s science fiction convention, Continuum, occasionally presents the Ian Gunn Memorial Award recognising the ‘unsung heroes’ of fandom: people consistently working in the background who never expect any recognition of their efforts. This commemorates Ian’s selfless efforts to reach out to others, encouraging others and thereby building the science fiction community.
K’rin Pender-Gunn, Ian’s widow, gave Dark Matter Zine permission to republish Ian’s artwork. Thanks, K’rin!