When I was a child the phrase “The 21st Century” brought visions of an exciting future dancing through my head. It was future where skyscrapers reached into space, everyone had jetpacks and flying cars and maybe you could bone robots. What? The point is that the 21st century made promises of amazing things and as we close the first decade of what was supposed to be this revolutionary time these are the five promises that the 21st century has failed to live up to so far.
What We Were Promised: Jet Packs
This was how we were supposed to achieve the childhood dream of being a super hero. With this seemingly simple tech we were to be freed from our earthly bonds and allowed to soar like Supermen. It seemed so simple: strap a back pack, full of explosives and powered by pure ass-puckering awesome to your back and shoot through the wild blue yonder like a rocket made out of meat. Also there was a small that hope that in hover mode we would be able to exact revenge on our enemies…pigeon style
You see this? This is how the 21st century is supposed to be.
What We Got Instead:
A craptastic re imaging of the jet pack from Thunderball. That’s right; the closest we’ve come to turning ourselves into human shaped ICBMs is based on a James Bond movie that came out 25 years before I was born. Now I can appreciate the creators follow through on his vision but for fucks sake man, The Rocketeer came out in 1991. It’s time to redesign the blueprints. Pay extra close attention when the designer explains that the first pack only flew for 21 seconds but this new flies an amazing…45 second.. FORTY YEARS OF DEVELOPMENT ALL WE HAVE TO SHOW FOR IT IS AN EXTRA 14 SECONDS OF FLIGHT? That’s not nearly enough to use this technology for our dark avenger dreams. Hell that’s not even enough to get our pants down in time to shit into a convertible during rush hour.
What They Promised: Robot Servants.
The future was supposed to be replete with robots that would remove some of the daily inconveniences of modern life and free up time to pursue those things which are pure human contrivances. And by that I mean humping. Yes having robots to around to clean the bathroom and do the vacuuming would be nice but the real advancement that the future promised were robots that looked like humans, felt like humans and made super-sexy love like only a robot fuck machine could. These sexy, nubile robots could be configured to look and act like anyone you wanted. Yes, just like that episode of Futurama where Fry falls in love with his Lucy Liu-bot, but sexier.
like this but with a face. Please god, say it came with a face
What we got instead:
The Roomba, The Scuba and a USB Vagina. As far as robots doing chores go you couldn’t get much worse than the Roomba and the Scuba. It’s like someone scooped out R2D2s brain, shit in the cavity and duct taped a hoover too it. The USB sex toy is so far away from being a sex-bot that I am ashamed for the good names of both science and masturbation. Having someone walk in while you’re polishing the bishop is embarrassing. Someone catching you wanking it using this remote controlled jar full of jam is pretty much an end to any relationship.
I know what you’re asking: “But Travis, wouldn’t having sex with a robot be just as creepy?”
Sure, getting caught making tender love to a robot could be a little awkward at first. But then the realization that you are basically fucking the She-Terminator from Terminator 3 AND she can look like anyone you want eclipses any issues you should have.
“Bill, what the fuck are you doing?”
“I’m fucking a anthromorphic artificial intelligence that can transmutate to any given form that could run amok and kill us all at my mere command!”
“You’re nailing a shape-changing, killer android that can look like any porn-star and obeys your commands?”
The resulting high five will be so loud that people in the 31st century will be able to hear it.
What We Were Promised: Laser Guns
Firearms became the great equalizer of the battlefield ever since the first canon ball flew forth from a pirate ship. And since that first deafening volley the bar has continued to be raised. Guns were created with greater capacity, higher velocity, further distance and shit-loads more barrels. But there comes a point in which it’s time to move beyond the stone-age method of throwing molded minerals downrange and harness the power of science to decimate our enemies with lasers. You promised me, future. You said that laser guns were a mere eventuality. And not some cockamamie, ship mounted laser gun; but hold ‘em in your hand laser guns that would incinerate our foes. You said it was coming.
What We Got Instead:
That picture up there. That thing that looks like it skipped right out of Halo and into my heart. That’s what we got. That right there is The Personnel Halting and Stimulation Response rifle or PHaSR. It is a prototype non-lethal laser dazzler developed by the U.S. Department of Defense. Its purpose is to temporarily disorient and blind a target. That stupid thing, though named aptly and looking all sorts of science fictiony, is the closest we’ve come to a personal laser weapon. Sadly it’s just a fancy looking housing for a really bright flashlight. Thanks a lot future. You asshole.
What We Were Promised: Super Powered Exo-Skeletons
By now I should be able to get up in the morning, don my super powered awesome suit and be prepared to fight crime before the crispy side of my toast has cooled. I want hands that can crush a car. I want a heads up display that allows me to look at anything and bring up any relevant data on the subject, and undress women with my robotic eyes. I want to be able to bench press a school bus without breaking a sweat and fist fight a grizzly bear as a morning workout. I was promised that in the 21st century I would be as close to a Terminator as a man could be. I was promised suits of armor that would give me the strength of hundreds of men, the speed of a cheetah on..uh…speed, and the armament of a M1-Abrams in the palm of my hand.
This will be the last time those cock suckers at Starbucks get my order wrong.
What We Got Instead:
The Sarcos exo-suit. If I had developed a super suit it would be covered in booster rockets, machine guns and possibly robot dongs. Any promo pictures sent out to the news media would show this awesome suit skull fucking a battle ship. Essentially I’d want to promote this thing as most cat-kickingly bad ass thing to ever exist. This abomination, on the other hand, is off on several counts. 1. This does not look slick and bad ass – this looks like a super suit built out of construx and a buld-a-bear kit. 2. This appears to be lacking any and ALL offensive weapons. What the hell is the point of donning a living suit of armor if you can’t use it to take over a small, backwards and horribly defended country? We’re looking at you Canada! The only thing this suit appears to allow you to do is lift two bowling balls with one hand. And if I wanted a solution to getting two balls in one hand; I’d call your mother.
What We Were Promised: HOVERBOARDS
Robert Zemeckis I’m looking right at you motherfucker. You said these things were real all the way back in the ’80s. You said it was our parents fault that these things weren’t available to us commercially. The minute those words left your lying stupid, lying mouth we all started saving our dimes and nickels. The Hoverboard is what sparked my fascination with the future. Everything else on this list was essentially a wishlist based on scientific trends, conjecture and a few hallucinations I had during an eventful summer in 1994. Sure they made sense based on several contributing factors but you were the one who told me this could happen. Based on your words it was only a matter of time before I could impress chicks simultaneously with my skateboarding prowess and flying skills. This wasn’t a joke to us Zemeckis. This was the beginning of our dreams!
“Fuck their dreams. I hate children any way.”
What We Got Instead:
Does it really matter? We were told that we were going to be able to surf the sky and that was a lie cake filled with bitterness and frosted with bullshit. Sure a couple of companies have managed to slap a piece of plywood on top of snow blower and others have created a hemorrhoid donut that you can ride but each lacks the sophistication of the Marty McFly hoverboard and replaces it with a healthy dollop of retarded.
Based on my research I have to determined the following: The past ten years have been like some sort of Voltronesque mega dick made up smaller dicks all conspiring to destroy my childhood dreams. Let’s hope things get better starting this next decade.