Throwback thursday: Pop-culture references that predicted Donald Trump's presidency
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
Robert Frost predicted the end of the world through hatred and passionate distaste. After Trump being elected the 45th President of the United States of America, many fear a dystopian future ahead of them. Dystopian stories, Laura Miller wrote in The New Yorker in 2010, have one ultimate purpose: “to warn us about the dangers of some current trend.” The term of Trump's presidency has notes of a dystopian future, or so it seems.
The Boston Globe had come out with a mock front page dating 9 April 2017. The headline screamed 'Deportations Begin' and another front page headline screamed 'New Libel Law Targets 'Absolute Scum' In Press'. Clearly, the daily had decided that Trumps presidency will spell trouble for the country. A story on Fusion titled Welcome to 'Trump’s America: an illustrated dystopia' stated the country's future if Trump won presidency: All Muslims in America are required to carry an ID card, raids are conducted at random (kindergartens, malls, etc) and press conferences are banned from the White House.
Indian website Arre published a video of how Trump's presidency would end. Keeping in tune with the theme of a dystopian future, here are a few films, TV series and albums that predicted a dark fate for their homeland, but they are nothing as compared to what really happened, because to paraphrase Mark Twain, reality is stranger than fiction:
The Simpsons didn't only predict a dystopian future, they predicted Donald Trump will be elected President.
The first reference is found in a March 2000 episode called Bart to the Future (S11E17);a sequel to the next Lisa's Wedding (S6E19). Bart gets a chance to see his future. He is a poor slacker while Lisa has become the first female president. Funny enough, the first scene of Lisa in the oval office reveals that her presidency is based on recovering from the massive failures of her predecessor, President Trump.
"It was a warning to America," writer Dan Greaney told The Hollywood Reporter.
"And that just seemed like the logical last stop before hitting bottom. It was pitched because it was consistent with the vision of America going insane."
The Simpsons again
The 25th season of the show in 2015 had an episode titled 'Trumptastic Voyage' where Homer is paid $50 to pretend to be a Trump supporter. This was released to mock Trump's then just announced bid to run for presidency.
He ends up on an escalator in Trump Tower with Trump and is transported into The Apprentice’s star’s hair where he goes on a journey. He defines Trump's hair as a 'gravity defying combover' and says 'I can't believe it was once on his ass.'
As Homer soars through Trump’s 'ginger forest,' a campaign sign that reads 'Trump 2016' switches to 'Trump 2020,' 'Trump 2024,' and 'Trump 2028.' Big Foot, an alien and Amelia Earheart make an appearance, as does a saddened and sunken Lady Liberty.
Black Ribbons by Shooter Jennings
The 2010 concept album by Shooter Jennings predicts a dark future. The album dialogue is written and narrated by horror mastermind Stephen King. The story is set in the near future and is a broadcast by fictional disc jockey 'Will 'o the Wisp' during his last night on the air before the U.S. Government takes control of the airwaves. He has vowed to play the one band the American government does not want him to play.
Shooter Jennings commented to Rolling Stones Country after the election polls, "We're pretty close to that now. With the shootings of cops and of black people and the Trump versus the Clinton camps, we are very divided. And that's the way they like us. Divide and conquer, man."
Back to the Future
Back to the Future gives you a sense of premonition in a lot of its predictions about America's future. But did you know that a character from the second film was modelled after president elect Donald Trump?
When Doc (Christopher Lloyd) urges Marty (Michael J. Fox) to travel to the future (Oct. 21, 2015) to save his children. The movie’s villain, Biff Tannen, then witnesses Marty and Doc’s disappearance in the time machine. Later on Biff steals the Almanac and time machine and goes back in time to alter the past, making him a successful businessman, who then tries to influence US politics. Biff, who prefers the title 'America's greatest folk hero' manages to convert his governing area in California where violence is common and dissent is suppressed.
Bob Gale, the genius behind the film had commented in The Daily Beast interview that Biff is based on Donald Trump.
Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner is a classic example of a work of dystopian fiction. In the film, Rick Deckard, played by Harrison Ford, is a 'blade runner' a bounty hunter whose mission is to track and “retire” escaped engineered cyborgs, physically indistinguishable from humans. These cyborgs are being used as slave labor by the Tyrell Corporation on off-world colonies. As the film progresses, Deckard, while hunting four replicants, begins to question the morality of his job and, consequently, what it means to really be 'human'.
The world in the future isn't a friendly, feminist society that we hope the future will be. It is dirty, heavily polluted, and grimy – its streets filled with trash and overcrowded with the impoverished.
With Trump's take on climate change, can this be the distant future?
Updated Date: Nov 10, 2016 16:51:21 IST