The 10 Types of Fictional Apocalypses (And What They Mean)

The Apocalypse rules pop culture. Half the biggest literary novels these days are apocalyptic, and meanwhile The Walking Dead is a huge hit. Post-apocalyptic stories are what space opera was in the Space Age. But what are they about? Here are 10 types of apocalypses, and what they each signify. » 10/07/14 10:05am 10/07/14 10:05am

Black Moon's Insomnia Epidemic Is The Most Unsettling Apocalypse Of All

We're living in a golden age of apocalyptic books right now, with everybody from Margaret Atwood to Cormac McCarthy to Colson Whitehead telling apocalyptic tales. We've had a plague apocalypse, and an apocalypse where children's voices are toxic. But the insomnia plague in Kenneth Calhoun's Black Moon is still… » 3/31/14 4:30pm 3/31/14 4:30pm

Will toy companies keep us from ever getting a superheroine movie?

Welcome to Postal Apocalypse, the only mail column on the internet written by a fake mailman from the future (that I know of)! Today we're discussing how toys affect movies — or prevent them, why DC seems determined to piss off everybody, and the best songs to sing around your apocalyptic campfire (besides "Every Rose… » 9/11/13 8:30am 9/11/13 8:30am

How The World's End rejects 'drunken, misogynistic' manchild films

In The World's End, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost gather their former best friends to drink their old hometown dry. But when we talked to Pegg, Frost and director Edgar Wright, they told us how this apocalyptic comedy isn't like your usual "drunken midlife crisis" film. Plus the secret of using genre to tell a personal… » 8/21/13 12:30pm 8/21/13 12:30pm

10 Completely Ridiculous Ways the World Has Ended

The end of the world is a scary idea, but the way the world ends isn’t always so terrifying. As it turns out, society could collapse or the planet could get destroyed in a variety of dumb and/or ludicrous ways. Here are 10 doomsday scenarios we hope will kill us, if only so we don’t have to die of embarrassment. » 8/12/13 10:00am 8/12/13 10:00am

John Hodgman explains the end of the world to you

John Hodgman is the world's foremost expert on all things canny and uncanny, and everything in between. And today marks the release of Ragnarok, his one-hour comedy special about the apocalypse, via Netflix. To celebrate, we talked to him about the meaning of apocalyptic stories, and why he doesn't love zombies. » 6/20/13 12:46pm 6/20/13 12:46pm

What's killing all the people in this exclusive book trailer for Rick…

Rick Yancey's The Fifth Wave is one of the summer's buzzed-about young-adult debut novels, and we're debuting an exclusive book trailer right here on io9. The "first wave" wiped out half a million people. And you can see here what the second wave does. What do you think the fifth wave is? » 4/09/13 4:53pm 4/09/13 4:53pm

What's better after the apocalypse: dick jokes or poop jokes? We asked…

Emma Watson, aka Hermione from the Harry Potter movies, shows up and steals supplies from James Franco and his friends, in the latest trailer for This is the End. But how did Rogen and his co-director/co-writer Evan Goldberg coax a crazy comedy performance out of Watson? And what sort of humor was going too far for… » 4/03/13 2:09pm 4/03/13 2:09pm

The studio did not want to let James Franco and Seth Rogen play…

This is the End is a comedy in which Seth Rogen, James Franco and a host of celebrities play themselves, facing the end of the world. Does that sound like a weird concept for a film to you? It certainly sounded weird to studio execs, who fought hard against letting a host of famous people lampoon themselves — and die… » 3/31/13 7:30am 3/31/13 7:30am

Your biggest life challenges, addressed: Gray hair, ponies and fantasy…

The toughest part about being The Postman in post-apocalyptic northwest America? The darned Holnist Army. You know, those jerks led by General Bethelhem whose sole duty seems to be being assholes to everybody. Somehow my job has turned from "delivering mail" into "delivering mail and fighting an actual war" with… » 12/12/12 8:00am 12/12/12 8:00am

9 Global Disasters That Never Came to Pass

It's easy to get caught up in apocalyptic paranoia. After all, it's 2012, the economy is fucked, the oceans are rising, and all our coolest fictional heroes are post-apocalyptic one way or another. But let's just take a moment to remember all the calamities that didn't happen. Over the past few decades, people have… » 9/14/12 10:00am 9/14/12 10:00am

The Most Overhyped Science Fiction Novel of the Year?

Karen Thompson Walker's The Age of Miracles got huge buzz over the summer, with mainstream magazines like Entertainment Weekly giving it rave reviews. I lost count of how many times I saw it referred to as one of the year's most important books. My local indie bookstore has it in a coveted corner spot on the "new… » 9/05/12 3:00pm 9/05/12 3:00pm