Nobody wants to live in their own dull, dreary world anymore. We all want to escape to fantastical worlds where there's danger, romance, magic.. who here hasn't been swept away by a book or a book in a way that would make even Calgon jealous?
Whether it's Fantasy or Science Fiction.. or even possibly Horror if that's your genre.. everybody needs an escape. So, today's Top-10 is all about the best places to adventure to when you're getting away.
- Middle Earth: Probably the best known literary World.. Middle Earth is full of magic, danger, heroism, and stunning visual effects. The depth of Middle Earth is staggering, the creatures and characters that live there are revolutionary. Plus, what other world can transform a hidden Island on the other side of the World into one of the hottest tourist destinations in the world.. merely because a movie was shot there?
- A Galaxy Far Far Away: In movies, there really is no comparison. Sure, maybe it's not the biggest money making movie franchise anymore, (or is it?).. but no other movie has spawned as many games, books, fan fiction, side-movies, Halloween costumes, etc.. Who wouldn't want to take a spin in the Millennium Falcon? And lets be real.. who here hasn't tried a Jedi mind trick at least once in their lives?
- Jurassic Park: OK, maybe we wouldn't want to really live there.. but come on, a Tropical Paradise with a motorized tour of real live DINOSAURS? Tell me where to throw my money!! Of course.. something needs to be done about the electrical failures.. and some better employee screening might be a good idea.
- Wonderland: No list of Fictional Worlds could be complete without a voyage beyond the looking glass. From a disappearing Cat to a Rabbit who is always late, to the guy with a Fetish for Hats.. Wonderland is just that, a wonder. And there are some who say that Lewis G. Carrol was experiencing with drugs when he thought up Wonderland. Off with their heads.. I say!
- Narnia: Consider it Middle Earth light. Narnia, much like Middle Earth, is a place that any adult would want to visit and any kid would never leave. Talking animals, fairy tale creatures, and a good and noble King.. CS Lewis was a very religious person, and that is unmistakable in his very moralistic stories of Narnia, but he was also incredibly imaginative, and that's what keeps us coming back to Narnia.
- Hogwarts: Really? Do I need to say anything here? Magic, selfless heroes, flying broomsticks, every flavor beans, Quidditch, talking to snakes, magic wands, and Dumbledore..come one. How many books get an entire Theme Park?
- Dreamlands: I know most people who read this probably have not much love for Horror, but HP Lovecraft isn't so much a pure Horror writer as he was a visionary in the landscape of dark literature. An entire genre of writing is named after him. He broke the chains on some seriously dark stuff, but his mythos has shaped literature for decades. How cool is his stuff? When you can get a 15 year old kid get his friends to forsake a movie night just to sit and hear about Cthulhu. And when a writer like Stephen King calls you his "single largest influence as a writer", that's saying something. I have no idea if Lovecraft really dreamed the things he wrote, or just thought them up in a much less dreary scene than I imagine in my own mind.. you cannot have light without dark, and Lovecraft stands nearly alone in his expansion of the dark.
- World of Warcraft: OK.. don't roll your eyes at this. The MMORPG World of Warcraft had, at one time, over 15 Million subscribers. It's down to around 10 or so now.. but that's still an incredible feat. Going on a decade of dominance in the gaming industry is simply unheard of. Yes, it's a video game, and yes, it's a HUGE waste of time. (I've wasted hundreds of hours on it.. but am now free of the addiction) However.. it's also a phenomenally original storyline with some truly interesting and heroic characters. If you get down to the story behind the game, it's seriously great fantasy literature. That is is expressed behind a video game doesn't negate the depth and quality of the story.
- Land of Oz: OK.. I'll be honest here. I never liked the Wizard of Oz.. never. Haven't liked one of the movies or the takes on the original story. However, even though it's not my cup of tea.. I can still absolutely recognize the brilliance of the place. Yes there's a yellow brick road, yes there's witches and animate scarecrows and metal men.. and even a talking animal or two.. but nothing, and I mean nothing, sums up the brilliance of OZ better than 2 words.
That is all she wrote. Hated the story.. hated the movies.. LOVED the flying monkeys.
- Panem: So this is Hunger Games week.. so you know we can't end this without throwing in the (no spoiler) Districts. Who wouldn't want to at least fly over Panem.. visiting District 12 would be interesting, but I'm not sure I'd like to live there. However, that doesn't mean that it's not a tremendously inventive world that Suzanne Collins has created. It just means that if you're going there, be sure to pack your weapons.. and preferably a platoon of heavily armed Marines.