Younger generations are embracing older film genres, and the effects are noticeable.
With Guardians of the Galaxy ruling the box office, even the young female pop stars are getting in on the fun. Ariana Grande’s newest music video for her single Break Free is retro Flash Gordon-like sci-fi, and even manages to poke fun at Madonna and Miley Cyrus in the process.
Lionsgate also just announced the return of The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers in 2016. So what gives? If retro sci-fi suddenly the new trend?
Not exactly. It’s more that the industry is finally catching up with changes in the overall culture. Comic Con, the ultimate fan festival for all things entertainment, gets bigger every year. Let’s be honest, terms like “nerd’ and “fanboy” started out as derogatory, but have evolved considerably in the past decade. With the success of TV shows like The Big Bang Theory, the so-called nerds are now the cool kids in the room.
The result is a younger generation that is more channeled in to all things “fandom.” Internet traffic skyrockets at any mention of Batman Vs. Superman, and retro sci-fi is experiencing a shift of its own. This is occurring because of the new Star Wars installment, which after countless delays, is finally filming.
This cross-generational connection of past Star Wars fans to the newer ones is not lost on the business side of pop culture. More and more, film studios and music companies want to tap into current cultural shifts. As the phrase goes, “sci-fi never goes away, it just comes in cycles based on market trends.” The current trend just happens to include a very tech-savy younger generation. And that is a very good thing.
In an age where pop stars (the Miley Cyrus wave) have to “out raunch” each other to hold attention, the younger generation is finding it easier to tune out. Instead, they’re more interested in the Katniss Everdeen (The Hunger Games) and Captain Americas of the world (along with the rest of The Avengers).
Younger children are growing to appreciate the idea of “heroes” again, and that includes those great icons of older sci-fi lure. It’s just taking longer for film/music companies to catch up.
The proof is already seen in school fashions. With today’s kids, you’ll find more t-shirts featuring Captain America’s shield, or Hunger Games imagery than Miley Cyrus attention grabbing fare. With current technology, the newest film news/trailers can instantly be accessed through social media. That trend will only continue to grow in future years.
Current parents talking about Star Trek trivia can now connect with their own children’s interest in the same subject. And as one can see in the current Avengers, Lord of the Rings, and Hunger Games-like box office, tapping into these “cross generational” trends can lead to very high financial rewards.
So enjoy, thanks to The Avengers and Harry Potters of the world, now even retro sci-fi is getting some well deserved appreciation. It’s an appreciation that won’t go away any time soon.