Last week (19 March) Sir Arthur C. Clarke performed his final lift off and now probably occupies a geo-stationary orbit above the Indian Ocean. He was widely known for writing “2001, a Space Odyssey”, but I prefer his early works, rock solid, hardcore sci-fi like “Prelude to Space”, “Shadows on the Moon”, “Islands in the Sky”. My grandfather bought the italian edition of “Islands in the Sky” in 1954. I can imagine my father (a pre-teenager at that time) reading it, and I imagine his feelings, as the main character of the story was a boy and a space-age enthousiast, just like him. I devoured the same pages about twenty years later, I remember Sir Arthur explaining me the basic physic principles of space travel. There’s another book by Sir Arthur that I consider a milestone of my personal sci-fi addiction, a short tale collection. Among them are some of the pinnacles of his production, i.e. “Rescue Party” (“Spedizione di Soccorso” in italian), “The Star”, “The Nine Billions of Names of God”, “Summer on Icarus”. What left me breathless, reading them over and over, was their final, the last ten words that overturned and gave new meanig to the whole tale. Since then, I stated that a good story should be written beginning from it’s end.
I posted some of my drawings from the mid eighties. They are not directly related with Sir Arthur, but they strongly witness my background. Computheroes was intended to be a serie of short comics. Fellows with jacks sticking from their brain were in direct contact with powerful machines. Notice the Aracno-mobile: a similar vehicle can be seen in “Ghost in the Shell”. Last entry is a Hibernaut. Space travels are something for lonesome folks.