Something Coming Through Dependence Day
Twondering what’d happen sociologically in terms of changing technology and attitudes, if suddenly supposedly benevolent aliens arrived and said, ‘ We’re here to help you,’” says Paul McAuley. The award- winning writer is poised to unveil the first of a two- part adventure when Something Coming Through lands in February.
McAuley’s aliens, who offer mankind access to 15 other planets as part of their galactic aid package, are dubbed the Jackaroo, but he’s not giving much else away. “I decided that they’d be fantastically enigmatic and deliberately wouldn’t answer questions about who they were and why they were helping,” he says. “With most aliens in SF the interesting thing about them isn’t how different they are but actually how similar they are. All the most famous aliens, like Mr Spock, have human attributes that we can recognise. I thought, ‘ Let’s go for some that don’t really have anything you can grasp.’ You don’t even see them. They just appear through these hollow plastic- shelled mannequins that can assemble themselves out of air and water, then disassemble.”
The story’s human stars are Vic Gayle, a Birmingham policeman who’s emigrated to Mangala, one of the worlds opened up by the Jackaroo, and twentysomething Londoner Chloe Miller. “She gets caught up in a search for a teenager and his sister who seem to be on the run from something and also seem to be possessed by a fragment of alien intelligence,” says McAuley. Meanwhile, Gayle conducts a murder investigation tied to an ancient alien artefact... “Very slowly the two protagonists and the two story strands move towards each other.”
“I would love to do a superhero movie! The problem is I don’t want to be the girlfriend. I don’t want to be the daughter. I want to wear a fucking cool costume, with a scar
on my face, with fight scenes”
We like the sound of Jessica Chastain’s superhero.