Supertoys by Brian Aldiss

Just re-read Brian Aldiss‘ 1969 story “Supertoys Last All Summer Long“. Loved it; moving and economical.

Also interesting was Aldiss’ preface where he says that he worked with Stanley Kubrick on a film version soon after publication, but nothing came of that. Many years later, Steven Spielberg based his film “AI” on this story.

For me, one of the most moving aspects of the film “Bladerunner” (1982) is the way some of the artifical beings (replicants) have been programmed to think they are human and are devastated when they realise they are not, while others know they are artificial but develop human emotions as they grow older. Those aspects seem clearly to come more from “Supertoys” rather than from Philip K. Dick‘s story “Do Androids Dream” on which the film was based.

Aldiss in “Supertoys” shows that the artificial beings are treated as not having feelings, when they have more “humanity” than the human beings.

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