Top 10 Women of Sci Fi – part 2

Up next Martha Jones

Martha Jones was the second companion to the tenth Doctor. When we first meet Martha in “Smith and Jones”, she is a medical student training at a London hospital. The Doctor checked in as a patient after noticing unusual activity in the area.  The hospital is whisked away to the moon by the Judoon to further their search for a fugitive alien. After escaping the moon and returning to earth, the Doctor initially offered Martha a onetime ride through time and space.  As always to alleviate his loneliness, the Doctor asked Martha to become his long time traveling partner.

Throughout her season and it subsequent appearances in story arcs in later seasons of Doctor Who and in Torchwood, we see Martha grow from a smart young student carrying an unrequited love for the Doctor to a resourceful doctor battling to save the earth from various threats. Stand-out episodes that trace the growth and confidence of Martha include: “42”, when Martha helps save a ship full of people after the doctor is taken over by an alien. “Human Nature”/”The Family of Blood” where Martha is left alone to protect the Doctor who had to store the memory of his life in order to hide from aliens who are threat him. In the season ending episodes “The Sound of Drums”/”Last of the Time Lords”, Martha must travel the earth alone trying to singlehandedly save the world while the Master holds the Doctor hostage.  Martha leaving the Doctor on her own terms helped propel this character forward. After the events in the “Last of the Time Lords”, Martha choose to help her family deal with the repercussions instead of continuing her travels. These episodes also showed that the Doctor trusted her like no other companion before or since and heavily relied on her intelligence and bravery.

Martha remains one of my favorite companions even though the writers hampered the character with the unnecessary unrequited love thread that weaved its way through her initial run.  In the beginning much was made of Freema Agyeman being the first permanent companion of color to travel with the Doctor, that it seemed the story runners never knew what to do with her.  Giving such thin material, Ms. Agyeman still brought Martha to life and you couldn’t help but root for her.

For additional information Martha Jones check out  Tardis Index File

Top 10 Women of Sci Fi

Science Fiction has always been a haven for diverse and complex women. This is a first in a series of my picks for the Top 10 Kick-Ass Women of Sci-Fi.

First up:


(Firefly, Serenity)

The Woman Warrior is a iconic image in literature.  A fierce warrior who has long been portrayed as a celibate hunter who devotes her life and energy to fighting. Classically personified as Arcadian Artemis, goddess of Hunting and Chastity. Typically, Women warriors live and fight with other females and myths based in numerous cultures around the world.  The Amazons are a famous example.

In Firefly and later Serenity, we see Zoe turn this notion on its head.  We first meet Zoe on the battle field alongside Caption Mal Reynolds fighting for the Brown Coats against the Alliance.  After the war, she continues to serve alongside Mal onboard Serenity as his second in command. Instead of the archetypal women warrior, a female warrior who lives and fights among other warriors. Zoe is happily married to Wash, pilot of Serenity. Not only content in being married but excited to plan for a future with kids:

Wash: All I am sayin’ is that we are living pretty deep in the rough and tumble and I don’t seeing that changing  any time soon

Zoe: Nor do I

Wash: Well, I’m not sure now is the best time to bring a tiny little helpless person into our lives

Zoe: That excuse is getting little worn, honey

Wash: It’s not an excuse dear. It’s objective assessment. Can’t help that it stays relevant

Zoe: I don’t give a good …  about relevant, Wash, or objective. I ain’t so afraid of losing something that I ain’t gonna try and have it. You and I would make one beautiful baby and I want to meet that child one day. Period.

Hearts of Gold

Had Firefly lasted longer than 14 episodes, it would fascinating to explore other sides of Zoe as a wife and eventual mother.

Check out the fabulous Gina Torres on Geeks On, discussing her career and the state of women’s roles in Sci Fi.

The title says it all



Why Hasn’t Octavia Butler’s Work Been Adapted

In a town that loves adaptations, it’s a shame that no one has embraced the fascinating stories told by one of our nation’s unique writers: Octavia Butler.  As a fan of both Octavia Butler and Sci Fi, I would love to see the disturbing tale of Fledgling brought to the big screen.  An original vampire tale regarding Shori, a 53 years old vampire who looks 10.  With the success of the Twilight series, Vampire Diaries, True Blood, it’s surprising that no one in Hollywood willing to take a change an bring this character to life.

I would love to see a character who looks just like me moving through time and space.  There is still some trepidation in Hollywood to feature a sci-fi movie featuring a person of color, who is not Will Smith? Can’t you imagine Tarji P. Henson or Thandie Newton starting in Kindred – the time traveling tale dealing with slavery and familial connections.

Tyler Perry has the means and resources, namely his own studio, to take a chance a tackle one of Ms. Butler’s complex.  There is an audience for this material.  Racialicous has started a book club devoted to her works Octavia Butler Book Club. To quote Field of Dreams “Build it and they will come.”

Get Your Nerd On

Jonesing for nerdy conversation, then check out  We Nerd Hard and Starbase 66

I wasn’t prepared for the massive amounts of Nerdness of We Nerd Hard.   As a new listener I wasn’t ready to be assault with detailed knowledge of the hottest video games. According to their bio, they are breaking down the latest in tech rumor mill, video games, random old school sci-fi and Saturday morning cartoons.  Be forewarned that Elon James White is currently going through a weird obsession with Jackie Chan Adventures.  What started out as musings on an old Saturday morning favorite has taken an ugly turn. Tatiana King is bringing the nerd girl point of view, so every angle is covered. Fahnon Bennett and Aaron Rand Freeman round out this tight crew. 

Starbase 66 is keeping the nerdy flame alive with discussions on everything Trek, sci-fi, horror, fantasy and comics. Podcast reminds me of the conversations that I with my geeky friends.  Admiral, Ro Karen, and Kennedy are the regulars of this top notch podcast.

Do you have a favorite nerd cast?



Recently NPR books listed the Top 100 Science-Fiction, Fantasy books picked by its fans.  As a Sci-Fi fan, I am surprised by the lower number of  Sci-Fi/Fantasy books that I have actually read.  After reading the list, I realized that I have only read 8 books! I have seen a lot of movies but reading, not so much. So, I am going to read all of the books on this list.  The top 100 is a misnomer because they count trilogies and series as one entry. With that being said, I won’t give myself a time limited.  Will you join me?

NPR List