aliens ate my homework reviews

aliens ate my homework reviews

Critical Analysis of the Portrayal of Aliens in Popular Culture Through the Lens of ‘Aliens Ate My Homework’

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1. Introduction to the Portrayal of Aliens in Popular Culture

With these figures in mind, for this paper, I chose a 2018 straight-to-video adaptation of the novel Aliens Ate My Homework, written by popular science fiction and fantasy author Bruce Coville, as an examination of how alien characters are portrayed in youth-oriented science fiction. Through discussing specific plot and stylistic elements within the film, it becomes clear that the portrayal of aliens in Aliens Ate My Homework accurately reflects implied societal trepidation about an encounter with extraterrestrial beings. Such speculative fictional texts have affected and reflected their historical moment, making a critical engagement with contemporaneous texts, as well as those created for children, necessary.

1. Introduction While not an exhaustive list, Samantha Blackmon, M. Scott Poole, and Sarah Juliet Lauro cite major themes in science fiction work featuring aliens: “the notion of the post-human; the offering of radical alterity; the ideological struggles working themselves out in tales of Other beings, in terms of reconciliation or coexistence, subjugation and genocide; the always-inferior alien who speaks of a post-human binary; the metaphor of alien as capitalism, slavery, slave revolt, immigration, immigrant, and the boundaries of citizenship; and the alien that nods to the uncanny.” The portrayal of aliens in popular culture mirrors prevalent societal sentiments, particularly those already tied to anxiety about non-humans and the potential implications of an encounter with aliens.

2. Overview and Analysis of ‘Aliens Ate My Homework’

Interacting with strong human female characters outside the alien comical prose tale camp, developing a significant authorial indignation about the failure of Homo sapiens adults to provide exemplary conduct, provides Shaw with opportunities to explore a field resistant to male influence. Through failing to repair the wormhole and return to face the consequences of their inept serial disasters with humans, Grakker and Greeson engage in an assertion of gender superiority, shifting the alien/human comedy fantasy parameters of shapership and influencing the shape. Grakker refers to home, to high-status disguised positions of power by proxy, and to their expedition as being “good for their characters”. Such assertions develop a model whereby human children are taught the importance of growing up strong and committed to contributing positively to the human role box through empathizing with the alien child tale box.

Strong female characters continue to dominate contemporary children’s literature, with the protagonists of the “Alien Adventures” series standing as real contenders. From the start of “Aliens Ate my Homework”, where Rod’s sister is introduced as a scientifically minded, tough, and proactive believer in hard evidence, and Rod’s mother is stratospherically successful and engaged in work she adores, through to the sequence which brings the story to its close, all of the female characters are strong and more than a match for their male counterparts. The two dialogically linked males of the alien world, Grakker and Greeson, are an entertaining double act: the consequences of their (mis)adventures in our human world are extraordinary and very funny.

3. Themes and Messages in the Book

How does the contrary of sheer power not come into play? To what extent does the play by hand element block the otherwise written message? It is particularly noteworthy how friendship and companionships form a base level theme that undergoes almost every aspect of the story. It is ironic how likely human responses upon contacting extraterrestrial existence and institute it will contain its own set of friendships, companionships, and intimate affairs. Clearly, the characters have twice the work with having utmost difficulty to understand each other. It is the little things and common features on the same stands and species that a community or building of cooperative spaceship afloat. The main character’s bias does not work.

Human issues are predominant in most parts of ‘Aliens Ate My Homework’ as the story positions otherworldly issues in the center of mainstream culture. This book, in fact, exhibits aliens as major antagonists, yet the term as the title is an exclusion. This fact reveals the primary story focus, considering the peculiar nature of the clan of Rod and how to differentiate the manifestation as reasons for the previous boundary. The main themes include bias, perspectives, friendship, the corruption of power, and care for the environment. How do these constructed ideals suit the purpose and reflect the main theme? Does the audience’s ideology contribute to this?

4. Comparative Analysis with Other Alien-themed Works

In comparison to popular culture trends and historical literature on the variety of aliens typically encountered, layered insight can be gleaned from the candid thoughts and inherent biases present in our current portrayal of space invaders. It is likely that we still incorrectly overlay human characteristics and behaviors onto extraterrestrials. Likewise, it is possible that we want aliens to visit our planet, being fascinated and captivated but hesitant about the potential implements arriving visitors might bring.

In the exercise of asking both children and adults about their conception of aliens as a precursor to the discussion on the portrayal of aliens, it was very obvious that it was rare to find someone without input. Another side project was to determine how common it would be for an individual to prefer not meeting or mingling with the aliens. These discussions were often just as comical and relevant as the original topic, providing unknowing suggestions and views which formed part of the conclusion and discussion.

This paper gives two-person responses to the question, “What is an alien?” before comparing them to descriptions of characters from the book. These responses are used to tease out underlying societal assumptions and stereotypes borne of the lack of information on these hypothetical creatures. The person responding to the prompts then decides whether they would like to encounter the fictional aliens. These responses are used to describe how the presented characters influenced the desirability of interactions with these creatures, hinting at a direct link between depiction and social perception.

In this paper, I conducted a study on how the depiction of aliens in popular culture differs from the portrayal of aliens in the book ‘Aliens Ate My Homework’. Aimed at lower-primary readers, this book gives a humorous take on the classic trope of alien invasions. This combination of relatability and imagination captures the intrigue and possibility of interactions with extraterrestrials in a safe, exploratory setting.

5. Conclusion and Future Implications

It is my conclusion that through a portrayal of aliens that reference the popular cultural imagery of them, be it intentionally or unintentionally employed, essentially teaches readers to expect the manifestation of a specific form that is regarded as omnipresent, welcome, and here to help earthlings. This type of form is highly derivative of current Christian patriarchy. Working with literature that references popular artistic stereotypes that reference Christian patriarchy, especially in a children’s literature context, requires critical distance. Research directed specifically at decoding and critiquing hidden, rarely acknowledged yet insidiously stubborn popular cultural bias and forcing a dangerous reassertion of those biases. As found in this analysis, it ultimately becomes sexist if not engaged with critically.

The jump to produce an interstellar species from a group of students not paying attention in class is a steep one. It does, however, reveal deep cultural assumptions about the nature of aliens and how they may present themselves to humankind. The underlying question employed by intergalactic high school bullies: why do you earthlings make these very specific species-associated assumptions about what an alien just has to look like? What socio-historic Christian bias do you possess? Given that Christian mores and doctrinal assumptions influenced the formation of the genre, it should not surprise that ideas about what an alien might look like often incorporated aspects of familiar images, especially when there was a pedagogical aspect to the author’s derivative choices. They are also choices that have been enshrined by cultural stereotypes of how an alien ought to present itself.

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