Two different but somewhat related bits of media passed my purview in the last week that when taken together got me thinkin’. The first was Federico Alverez’s awesome short film “Panic Attack!” about giant robots that destroy Montevideo, Uruguay. If you haven’t seen it, check it out. To quote semi-famed actor/writer/director person Brian Spaeth, it is “sweet”.
(By the way, Brian sent me a link via the ol’ Twitter that reported Sam Raimi enlisted Mr. Alverez to make a full-length movie. We’ll see how that goes.)
The second media I saw was a blog post by International Relations Professor/Blogger Daniel Drezner entitled “The Global Governances of Apocalypses“. In his post, Dr. Drezner answers a challenge by another blogger who asks the same thing I have often wondered “What is the proper forum for secret doomsday planning? The G-20? The U.N. Security Council? The P5+1 or the EU3 +3? Every country for itself?”
Drezner answers by saying Hollywood is of course historically inaccurate and in reality the following would occur:
- There would be initial and profound disagreement among experts over what precisely to do;
- After a scientific consensus began to emerge, dissenters would go back to their home governments to lobby for political support
- There would be rampant suspicion of any multilateral effort by those asked to make an outsized contribution;
- The cost overruns… oh, the cost overruns;
- Conspiracy theories would pop up all over the friggin’ place
- The plan wouldn’t work.
However, combining the two scenarios, what if the robots from Panic Attack! invaded and made the traditional movie invader demand, “Take Me To Your Leader.” What would we do? Who would we bring the invaders to? Who did the 1950s-era screenwriters think was in charge?
(On second thought, maybe “Take me to your leader” pre-dates the ’50s. Maybe it goes back to H.G. Wells and War of the Worlds and the original sci-fi classics. If you know the origin, let me know. It’s important, but not really.)
I guess the answer would depend on who the invaders first encounter. And then the beliefs and politics of the encountered. Even here in the U.S. there could be some confusion. How many people would bring the visitors to their mayor, governor, or even church leader? Or, shudder the thought, how many folks would bring our otherworldly guests to Glenn Beck?
Then of course, there are other leaders of similar or perceived equal power worldwide. What about the Pope? The Dalai Lama? What about the Ayotallah in Iran? What about other presidents, kings, prime ministers, or even little league baseball coaches?
If aliens landed in your backyard and said “Take me to your leader” (assuming they spoke English), who would you bring them to?