Sunday, 23 February 2014

Echoes of Yesterday's Tomorrows

During a time in which it was possible for me to accurately depict my age on a single hand I invested heavily in the sort of science fiction wonderlands that were often presented to me in the animated adventures of Captain Future. The whole thing is a fairly aged concept of what our distant futures were going to be like. We operated from a different sort of point of view.

Captain Future goes way back. Not like the Barsoom Mars scene in which the nudity was rife. That's ancient. A hundred and change. But Captain Future goes back further than most of us. If both my maths and understanding of the age range and make up of the current population is accurate, he goes back further than most of us. He'd be seventy four this year. Well, he is in the future as a fictional character so he wouldn't even have been born, but you know what I am getting at.

I had a deep love for this flavour, and some part of that has become deeply intwined with the sort of science funktion themes songs of Captains both Future and Harlock. I've made previous mention of my affections for this particular auricular experience, but what I have neglected to pass on was that the also previously mentioned Mark Mercury not only brought us the Space Pirate Captain Harlock theme, 'Take to the Skies', but also the Captain Future theme, 'Captain Future'. Good name that. The latter. Clear. Concise. To the point. Not easily confused.

The theme song, and as a result the greater body of Mark Mercury's work, is important to me. My introduction to Captain Future was through a trailer for the show, which was nothing more than the opening title sequence, resplendent with theme song (it can wear a theme song),  with a brief nugget of explanatory narration delivered at me through the Communications and Entertainment Limited VHS release of Space Pirate Captain Harlock. In hind sight this sort of thing might be considered evidence of their phonic relatedness, but that would be some pretty loose deductive reasoning on my part.

I can't actually find the exact advertisement with the narration, but it is a lot like the video above. This trailer was all I had to go on initially, but was enough for my fertile young mind to begin building upon. The fascination ran deep and polluted my later explorations of Edmond Hamilton's Captain Future stories, in which he was 'Captain Future, Wizard of Science', but also flowed through the entirety of that sort of exquisite space faring, time travelling nonsense that they epitomise. I bandied about the verb 'pollute' back there as though I take some issue with the lasting impact that this has had, but let me be clear: this is akin to 'polluting' an altogether pleasant romp in the hay with some post coital Grand Designs. It's a good thing.

Mark Mercury, the man who artfully captured my attention and piqued my interest in the Captains is still out there making his music. In much the same way that Kevin McCloud is still out there making Grand Designs. And, like Kevin with his show, it strikes me as the sort of thing that he enjoys doing. Even the briefest of encounters with his work will leave you with the distinct impression that this particular fellow is a little keen for space. I too am keen for the space. It's what I fantasise about. I could spend weeks telling you about my cosmic day dreams, but I don't yet have the requisite theme song. 

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