Which Scifi Drug Do You Wish You Could Take?

Illustration for article titled Which Scifi Drug Do You Wish You Could Take?

Science fiction is full of weird made-up drugs, many of which sound way more fun than boring old smack. There are drugs that make you telepathic, let you navigate space-time, or just give you trippy-ass visions. This wealth of options is due to the fact that science fiction fans are all drug fiends, says one famous author. Click through to learn more, and vote on which SF wonder drug you'd rather be tripping balls on right now.

Illustration for article titled Which Scifi Drug Do You Wish You Could Take?

There's a natural crossover between druggies and science fiction fans, writes Robert Silverberg, author of Son Of Man:

Surveys have shown that the audience for science fiction is primarily adolescent and above average in intelligence; most of the readers are between 15 and 25 years of age (though of course some remain addicts of the genre throughout their lives.) Therefore, there is great correspondence between the main drug-using and science-fiction-reading segments of the population.


That quote comes from a giant survey (PDF) of drug themes in science fiction which Silverberg wrote for the National Institute of Drug Abuse in 1974. (I love the way he refers to science fiction readers as "addicts.") The survey has some pretty weird examples, too. Did you know that a 1919 story was about discovering a lost drug formula from Renaissance scholar Roger Bacon, which lets you leave your body and travel to Venus?

So no doubt all this talking has made you wish you were doing drugs right now. So you tell us. If science fictional drugs were real, which one would you want to take?

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Annalee Newitz

I like how Spice is winning by a gigantic margin. The Spice is life! Also, I would like a thumper please. I want to ride a sandworm into downtown San Francisco.