Halfway through Sharknado 2: The Second One, I glimpsed a tiger shark—indigenous to tropical waters quite unlike those encroaching upon New York City—attacking pedestrians in Manhattan. This bit of artistic license almost completely ruined it for me. Had the filmmakers done their homework they would have discovered that tiger sharks rarely navigate the Atlantic north of the 30th parallel—let alone north of the 40th parallel. Such inattention to detail unfortunately sullies science fiction’s reputation as more fiction than science.
The Poseidon Adventure and Towering Inferno mated. Their baby, Sharknado 2, was born Wednesday night on SyFy. It was worse than the first, which is another way of saying way better.
When Ian Ziering longitudinally chainsaws a great white shark in two, an onscreen onlooker mouths, “You’re brilliant.” Simultaneously, those words emanated from my couch. As Fin, played marvelously by Beverley Hills 90210’s Steve Sanders, dramatically announces in the sequel, “The people need to know the truth before it happens again.”
Sharknado, like Jaws before it, will happen next summer and the summer after that. So why not “know the truth” by tuning in this weekend for the repeat at 7 p.m. Eastern?
The corporate media have cast doubt on the possibility of the sharknado phenomenon. “We just felt it was time that the world was alerted to the perils of global warming and the perils of biometeorology,” Sharknado screenwriter Thunder Levin tells MSNBC. “So it was just a matter of doing our research and getting our facts out there.” A startled Tamron Hall interjects, “This can’t happen.” Levin enlightens, “Absolutely this could happen.”
The naysayers similarly doubted the assemblage of so many actors famous for being famous. Casting Jared from Subway in an actual subway plays as a stroke of casting genius on par with Al Roker playing a weatherman and crime-abiding-citizen Andy Dick appearing as a cop. The star-studded cast—Downtown Julie Brown as a nurse, Kelly Osbourne a stewardess, Billy Ray Cyrus a doctor, Biz Markie a pizza-shop proprietor—is hard to believe.
But is a sharknado really so far-fetched?
In antebellum America, novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne, New York Tribune editor and future presidential candidate Horace Greeley, and Civil War-era congressional chaplain William Henry Channing heeded the warnings of Charles Fourier, who saw in the aurora borealis evidence of a sick planet. The world suffered in “a night of moral and political ignorance,” the Frenchman reasoned, requiring his mathematically symmetrical communes as the obvious cure. Naturally, communal living would bring about lemonade oceans, friendly sharks, lions, and snakes, and five new moons.
Closer to our own time, the Nobel Committee and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have recognized the brilliance of Al Gore. Yet, his warnings of a summertime “ice free” Arctic within the next two years and recognition of the internal combustion engine as mankind’s greatest enemy have been met with the same ridicule as forecasts of a sharknado hitting the Eastern Seaboard.
If elites could follow Charles Fourier and Al Gore, how could MSNBC join the Flat Earthers by so easily dismissing the wisdom of screenwriter-prophet Thunder Levin?
The inconvenient truth is that the consensus of credentialed science fictionists unambiguously declares that tornadoes unleashing shark attacks will be coming to a city near you sooner than you think. Though the denial machine continues to endanger us all through their cavalier rejection of biometeorological climate change, the evidence—as presented in these important pre-enactment documentaries the last two summers on SyFy—overwhelms and frightens. Yet, industry-funded studies suggesting a hopelessly divided science-fiction community recalcitrantly persist.
Clearly, the denial machine will harp upon Sharknado 2’s minor mistaken inclusion of tiger sharks from the tropics in Manhattan to discredit the much larger issue of shark-wielding tornadoes. But delaying legislative action because of such small inaccuracies imperils the planet’s survival. The time for debate and dissent has ended. We can either do what the best science fictionists tell us to do to prevent sharknadoes, or we can die. It’s that simple. When the cartilaginous carnivores inevitably descend upon the streets of the Big Apple, the appropriate comeuppance for MSNBC’s Tamron Hall and other anti-science fiction deniers who foster such paralyzing doubt among policymakers will arrive in the form of a biometeorological Nuremburg trial.
Contrary to conventional wisdom, Chicken Little wasn’t wrong. The story just hasn’t ended yet.
It never does, as the coming installments of Sharknado—and future world-saving Fouriers and Gores—will surely affirm.