t’s time for humankind to grow up — but it might also be more important than ever that we reconnect with our inner children and play like our lives depend on it (because they do). And so, given the in-progress BBC/HBO adaptation of Philip Pullman’s masterful fantasy trilogy His Dark Materials, it feels like a great time to talk about this coming-of-age story and its cosmological questions. This week on Future Fossils, we link up with my friends Stephen Hershey and Kynthia Brunette, whose perspectives from acting and the study of human-computer interaction, as well as their deep fanship of Pullman’s writing, add up to a refreshingly fun and casual discussion of some of the biggest questions human beings ever thought to ask themselves.

We talk about how translations from one medium to another affect the way we tell our stories; the media theory and logic of reinterpretation; C.S. Lewis and the important critiques of The Chronicles of Narnia; how Lyra Silvertongue is like and unlike Anakin Skywalker and other complex heroes whose success is the fall of an established social order; evolution in a cosmos where tension and opposition are required, and unity rhetoric deeply suspicious; the collapse of networks and how His Dark Materials anchors in the same archetypes as Dan Simmons’ Hyperion Cantos; 21st Century religion and faith in the absence of objects of faith; and much more.

You can follow Stephen Hershey on Twitter (twitter.com/stephenhershey) for hot takes and on Twitch (twitch.tv/stephenhershey) for games and philosophy/astrology talks.

You can link up with Kynthia Brunette on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/kynthia) or LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/kynthia/) to learn more about her and her work with MAPS.

Please rate and review Future Fossils on Apple Podcasts! And if you believe in the value of this show and want to see it thrive, tell a friend to support Future Fossils on Patreon.

We’d also love to have you in our thriving little Discord server, if you’re interested in meeting other members of our awesome scene. (And if you’d like to help edit transcripts, please drop me a line at futurefossilspodcast@gmail.com.)

Intro and outro music by Skytree.

Related Reading:

NBC News — HBO’s His Dark Materials Does Philip Pullman Justice

The Ringer — Jack Thorne interviewed on the HBO Adaptation

Esquire — HBO Show vs. Books Differences

Radio Times – HBO Show vs. Books Differences

BBC – Philip Pullman Webchat

Related Future Fossils Episodes:

111 – Android Jones on Analog + Digital, Painting the Sutras, & Being an Artist Dad

71 – JF Martel (On Sequels & Simulacra, Blade Runner 2049 & Stranger Things 2)

61 – Jamaica Stevens (On Crisis, Rebirth, Transformation)

55 – “Creativity & Catastrophe” (Talk at Palenque Norte, Burning Man 2017)

53 – A Very Xeno Christmas! with Evan “Skytree” Snyder

14 – WESTWORLD Problems (feat. Michael Phillip of Third Eye Drops)

And when you’re ready to switch it up with some psychoactive music, here’s my music and my listening recommendations on Spotify.