11doctors-50th

Grokking Expatriates In Sci-Fi*

I was having a conversation with Spring about Doctor Who, as we often do, and it occurred to me that The Doctor is actually an expatriate.

That’s really what this blog is about-  I started to write here originally just to tell my family and close friends what I was up to during my time in Germany.  Over time, however, my blog evolved into more than that-  I talk about life as an expat, and I talk about things that are different from life back in the US, different from the life I knew before last year.

Every third or fourth time I use the word expatriate, or expat for short, someone asks me what it means.  An expatriate is just somebody who lives outside of their native country, whether that be temporary or permanent.  The original meaning of the word referred to people who were permanently exiled or who had renounced their homes, but the word is used much  more generically now to describe anyone living outside their home country.

Doctor WhoIf you broaden the definition slightly of expatriate from country to planet, you can posit that the Doctor is actually an expat.   His homeworld is Gallifrey, a planet that is lost forever in time, but he spends an awful lot of time on Earth, hanging out with humans and generally getting involved with the culture.  That, my friends, is what an expatriate does.  Most of us don’t spend quite as much time running as the Doctor,  though, with the possible exception of Mandi.

Talking about the Doctor as an expatriate got me thinking about all the other expats scattered throughout geeky pop culture, and there are hundreds upon hundreds of them.  Since I’m a huge list-making nerd, this naturally led to me making a list of some of my favorite sci-fi and fantasy expats from movies, television, comics, and books.  There are far too many to include in one sitting, but these are some of my favorites.  I separate most of them into one of four basic categories: Last Of My Kind, Stranded, Out Of Time, and Expat By Choice.

The Doctor falls into the Last Of My Kind grouping.

jonnjonnzAnother memorable example of the last of his kind is J’onn J’onnz, the Martian Manhunter.  J’onn has taken on the human secret identity of John Jones, and he works as a police detective.  Here we encounter a major genre caveat:  Almost all comic book characters have had their story told and retold so many times that there are numerous versions, numerous origins, and numerous backstories.  J’onn was not always the last of his kind, and certain versions of him have other martians around.  In current continuity, there are green martians and white martians- J’onn is a green.  In most of the versions though, J’onn spends much of his non-crimefighting time observing and trying to understand humanity.

bigblueContinuing on in comics, we have perhaps one of the most famous expatriates of all time:  Kal-El of Krypton. Sent to earth by his father to escape a dying planet, baby Kal is adopted by Jonathan and Martha Kent, and is raised as their son, Clark Kent.  The story of Superman is so well known in our shared popular culture that even people who don’t read comics tend to have at least some knowledge of the story.  One interesting question where Superman is concerned, however:  In most versions of his story, Kal-El really knows very little of the cultural heritage of Krypton.  He was raised on Earth, as an Earth child.  Does this mean he’s not really an expatriate?

I could go on and on about expats in comics, since many of the comic book heroes are living outside their home countries.   As my friend Frank Fradella put it when I bounced the idea for this post off of him, “…and geez… the entire “new” X-Men were expats. Storm, Colossus, Banshee, Sunfire, Nightcrawler.”  Frank is right-  if I keep listing comic book expats, we’ll never get around to other fun characters.  Let’s move on to the Stranded expats.

While most expat stories in the sci-fi/fantasy genre tend to be fish out of water stories, it’s a pretty common trope to have people stuck somewhere, trying to get home.  Heck, that’s the entire premise of Star Trek: Voyager.  I don’t count them as expatriates, though, because they’re living in a community of their own kind (i.e. on board Voyager) and they’re not really integrating into the society around them as much as they’re just passing  through.  Star Trek: Voyager is the sci-fi equivalent of an American Army base in Germany- just passing through, folks.

farscapeOften, however, the characters who fit this category are stuck.  They want to go home, but don’t know a way.  Like John Crichton in Farscape.  John is an astronaut and test pilot.  In the first episode of the series, he’s flying his module, Farscape One, and he is pulled into a suddenly appearing wormhole.  When he exits the other side, he’s in the middle of a battle between the Peacekeepers, a human-looking species called the Sebacean, and a group of escaped prisoners of various alien species aboard Moya, a living ship.  He’s pulled onboard Moya, and the rest of the series is a combination of his adventures with that group and his attempts to get home.

flashgordonFlash Gordon‘s story is not all that different than John Crichton, although in the wonderfully campy 1980 movie version, he’s not an astronaut, he’s a professional football player. (The original 1930s version had him as a polo player.)   During a series of pretty ludicrous events, he gets launched into space, and crash-lands on Mongo, before getting into a series of adventures with the various peoples of that world.  Flash adapts amazingly well, and ultimately winds up saving the various different nations of Mongo from their evil overlord, Ming The Merciless.  There have been other versions of Flash’s story, but the 1980 version is my favorite, partially because of the amazing Queen rock-score for the film, but mostly for the amazing cast, including Timothy Dalton as Prince Barin, Max von Sydow as Ming, and the amazing Brian Blessed as Prince Vultan:

Gordon's alive?

Moving on, then.  The television series Land Of The Lost counts as a Stranded expat story, because the Marshall family (father Rick, children Will and Holly) accidentally moves through a dimensional portal and spends the rest of their time dodging dinosaurs and Sleestaks (humanoid reptilian bad guys) and trying to get back home.  I have no particular fondness for this series, but I like saying “Sleestak.”

Another great expatriate character who is stuck away from his home is Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkel Emmannuel Ambroise Diggs, known to most as the Wizard of Oz.  As with comics, there are many different versions of this character.  In some versions, he’s fairly benificent.  In the original book version, he really just wanted to go home.  In the musical Wicked, (my favorite version, incidentally,) he’s actually kind of a dick.

kevinflynnIn another of my all time favorites, the TRON series, Kevin Flynn has a rather interesting version of being stuck in another place. Since 1989, Flynn has been living in the Grid, a fictional virtual reality world.  We don’t really see much of Flynn’s life on the Grid, because the movie follows his son, Sam Flynn.  Still, it’s evident from what you do see that he has established a remarkable life for himself there.

fordprefectUp until this point, all of my Stranded examples have been humans.  However, one of my favorite expatriate characters isn’t human at all.  He is, in fact, from a small planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse.   Ford Prefect, from the Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy series, has been in many formats-  books, television shows, radio shows, a movie, comic books, trading cards-  the version pictured to the right is the movie Ford, played by Mos Def.  I prefer the book and radio show versions of Ford, but it was much easier to find a picture of the movie version.   Ford is a roving researcher for the titular Hitchhiker’s Guide.  He came to Earth to research it for the book, and got stuck for fifteen years.

We can go in with the Stranded examples for pages and pages, but I think it’s Time to move onto the Out Of Time category.  (See what I did there?)  These are characters who wind up stuck outside of their own time, like Booster Gold.  I said I wouldn’t do any more comic book heroes in this list, though.

fryI didn’t say anything about cartoons, though.  Take Philip J. Fry, in Futurama for example.  In the pilot episode of the series, Fry is a pizza delivery man who gets accidentally (ish) frozen in a cryogenic tube for one thousand years.  He wakes up in the future, and starts working as a delivery boy (naturally) at Planet Express, a delivery company owned as a side-business by Fry’s distant, distant, very distant nephew, Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth.  A quick side-note about Futurama-  this show is insanely smart at times.  From the earliest episodes, the creators plotted out certain things that get threaded throughout the series.  For example, in the future world of Futurama, owls have become vermin and pests, not unlike city rats of the present day.  Don’t believe me?  Watch the show again from the beginning, and watch for owls.

Bidi-bidi-bidi.Getting back to our expats in time, we have Buck Rogers.  Buck is another old character who has been in movies, television shows, comics, and even video games.  The version most people know about is the 1979-1981 television show Buck Rogers, in which he’s a shuttle pilot who accidentally gets frozen for roughly 500 years. Once revived, he joins the Earth Defense Directorate, finds love, and gains a pet ambuquad named Twiki, a little robot who seems to have been designed to cash in on the popularity of C3PO and R2-D2 from the newly released film Star Wars.

I can’t believe it never occurred to me before right now as I write this sentence that Buck Rogers + Flash Gordon = Farscape.  Hmm.

Enhance your calm, John Spartan!As with all my other examples of expats stuck out of time, John Spartan of Demolition Man was crygenically frozen.  Whatever happened to a good old time machine?  John Spartan is a cop, sent to CryoPrison in 1996.  They wake him up about forty years later to stop another escaped cryoprisoner, the dastardly Simon Phoenix.  You can tell that Simon is the bad guy because his hair is an unnatural yellow-white color.

Let’s move on to the Expat By Choice category.  I could reference Wonder Woman’s decision to leave Themyscira, but dang it, I said no more comic book heroes.

chewbaccaIn the Star Wars universe, Chewbacca could loosely be considered an expat.  He isn’t hanging out on Kashyyyk with the other Wookiees.  However, expanded universe canon states that he fled his home-world when the Empire enslaved the rest of the Wookiees to get construction of the Death Star back on schedule.  This means that technically, Chewie is more of a refugee than an expatriate.  Additionally, since he travels with his friend and business partner Han Solo to fulfill his life-debt (long story), Chewbacca isn’t really embracing the culture of any specific new place.

While I would love to say that Babylon 5 is full of expatriate characters, it really only has two:  Sinclair and Sheridan.  Both of them go to live on Minbar at different points in the series.   The rest don’t quite match the definition of expatriate because the different species on board Babylon 5 all have their own groupings.  You rarely see a Pak’mara hanging out with the Gaim, for example, and you would never see a Drazi living on the Vorlon homeworld.  It just isn’t done.   Babylon 5 is a merchant outpost and a travel hub, and although it’s referred to as a city in space in the opening credits, it really isn’t.  B5 is run primarily by EarthForce, and it has no predominant single culture.

spockSimilarly, Star Trek is full of characters who seem to fit the role of expat at first, but perhaps aren’t textbook examples.  We have characters like Quark on Deep Space Nine, and Worf on board the Enterprise (and later, Deep Space Nine.)  Quark is a merchant, and since the station is a trading post, he’s not really adopting the culture of a new home-world.  As for Worf, he has Kal-El’s problem.  Worf may have been born a Klingon, but he was adopted by and raised by humans.  His primary culture is the one that he’s most commonly in touch with.  Worf isn’t an expatriate at all.  He falls into a slightly different category though, and I’ll touch on that a little bit later on.  Lastly, from my Star Trek examples, there’s Spock.  Spock was raised on Vulcan, but one of his parents was human.  He chooses to live in Starfleet, which is mostly populated by humans.  Even later in his timeline, when he becomes an Ambassador, he mostly sticks around Earth until his eventual trip to Romulus for reunification efforts between the Vulcans and Romulans.

teal'cNow that we’ve covered Star Wars and Star Trek, I would be remiss to leave out the third Star* franchise, Stargate.  Teal’c is another character that looks human, but isn’t quite human.  He is a Jaffa, which is a genetically modified human with an abdominal pouch so that he can serve as an incubator for a larval Goa’uld symbiote.  It’s not as icky as it sounds, because the symbiote grants its host Jaffa enhanced strength, health, and longevity as well as rapid healing.  The Jaffa are also an enslaved race at the beginning of the series, serving as military forces to the System Lords, who are the initial run of bad guys in the show.  I’m vastly oversimplifying the sequence of events here, but Teal’c defects to the SG1 team and goes back to Earth in the pilot episode of the series.    He becomes a valuable member of the team, and he even tries to live outside of Stargate Command in a regular apartment at one point in the series.  Naturally, he wears a hat to cover up the gold embossed tattoo on his forehead whenever he’s out in public.

spikegilesMeanwhile, back in Sunnydale, we have a couple of Brits living in America.  One of them is Giles, a Watcher, and the other is Spike, a vampire.  (I won’t get into Liam… sorry, Angelus here, because his Irish accent was just too horrific for words.)  The expats in Buffy The Vampire Slayer tend to be much more like the textbook definition of expatriate.  Giles is sent to Sunnydale by the Watcher’s Council, and that’s not all that different than me being sent to Germany for my job.  As for Spike, I suppose when you’ve lived for a hundred years or more, it makes sense to try to live somewhere different.

travelinmattAlso in the Expat By Choice category is Uncle Traveling Matt, a Fraggle who spends most of his time exploring “Outer Space,” his term for the normal human world the rest of us inhabit.  Matthew is the quintessential exploring expatriate, constantly evaluating the culture and norms around him, even if his observations are more Jane Goodall than Terry Gilliam.  (For those of you that know me well, you know I couldn’t do a list like this without including at least one Muppet.)

A few paragraphs back, I mentioned that Worf isn’t an expatriate, and that he falls into a different category than the rest of this list.  That category is Third-Culture Kids. A third-culture kid, or trans-culture kid, in the real world is usually the child of an expatriate.  For example, an American couple has a child while living in Germany.  The child is American-born, but German by culture.  When the family relocates back to the country of their passports, the child has to deal with this cultural divide.  Third-Culture Kids are often multilingual, and are very often accomplished.  However, adjusting to their passport country after years of living in other cultures can be incredibly difficult and can take a great deal of time.  This is Worf in a nutshell, although he didn’t reintegrate with Klingon culture until very late in his life.

valentinemichaelsmithMy favorite literary Third-Culture Kid would have to be Valentine Michael Smith, the man from Mars, in Heinlein’s amazing novel, Stranger In A Strange Land.  Mike to his friends, Smith is the biological child of Mary Jane Lyle Smith and Captain Michael Brant of the Envoythe first ship to travel to Mars.  The fate of the Envoy crew is unknown for twenty years, and when another ship finally arrives to investigate, they find that Mike is the Envoy’s only survivorSince Mike was raised by Martians, he went the first twenty years of his life never seeing any other human, and he spoke and thought in Martian at the beginning of the story.  Michael Smith is an incredibly intelligent character, and it didn’t take him long to pick up most of the language, but the first two thirds of the novel deal with his adaptation to a completely alien culture- that of Earth- in a very detailed and fascinating way.

These are some of my favorite expatriates from Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Comic Book culture. What are some of your favorites?

*Don’t know what Grokking means?  I guess you should read Stranger In A Strange Land, then.  I’m off to MegaCon in Orlando this weekend, so you can tell me what you thought of it after I get back.

145 thoughts on “Grokking Expatriates In Sci-Fi*

  1. I never would have thought that Demolition Man and I face the same life challenges :) Thanks for the great post!

  2. Haha. I absolutely love that you thought to do this post. As a fellow scifi geek and expat blogger, I raise a glass to you!

    As for adding something to it, you certainly covered a lot of ground. When I scan back through readings past in my head, I don’t come up with many strict expats persay, though so many science fiction stories are about travelers. And given the size of the universe, often lifetime travelers. Many of the PK Dick books about families who have resettled on Mars come to mind. Maybe I’ll have to cook up a similar post myself.

    Cheers.

    • Thanks for stopping by!

      I had to find a stopping point or this post could have become much, much longer. You’re right about PK Dick. Similarly, I could rifle through Alfred Bester’s fascinating characters and find a few great examples. In this genre, there’s never a lack of good possibilities here.

  3. I absolutely loved this! And it has become the first post that I suggested to the Freshly Pressed team. :) I don’t think they’ve ever FP’d something that referenced Farscape and so it’s due, right? :D I have so many thoughts on this, but firstly : ” Buck Rogers + Flash Gordon = Farscape. ” — You are so incredibly right!! I love Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, but Farscape has really become my favorite geek show ever. In fact, this whole post is a conversation over coffee some day because I have way too many thoughts on it, and people to add… but for now I’ll just say, well-done. I think you portrayed, with some exceptionally beloved characters, how it is to be away from home, or form a home somewhere else, or find a place in your heart for multiple homes. Beautiful, funny, & smart– loved it.

    • It’s the new “Superhero” theme from WordPress. I thought it was nice. The timing of it is just a coincidence though. :)

    • Good point. And the third Doctor was exiled to Earth most of the time, so he would have been in the Stranded category. I guess that means regenerations 1,2, and 4-8 would all be Expat By Choice.

    • The featured image of all eleven doctors is actually an official 50th anniversary thing that I’m using as a wallpaper at work. Apparently, you can buy all sorts of merchandise with that image on it. The eleven doctors wallet is a little silly, but still…

  4. Nice mention with the Buffy characters! I totally forgot that they were expats. As for some of my favorites, there’s Darth Vader (born and raised on Tattooine but lived for most of his life on Coruscant) and Zahara Bakur, the main character of my novel-in-progress Reborn City, who was born and raised in Cairo until her family moved to New York and then to the titular city. And can you count Kyle Reese from Terminator as an expat, even if he was only in 1984 for a couple of days and then he died?

    • Kyle Reese doesn’t quite count, I don’t think, because he never tried to integrate. I think you could count Derek Reese from The Sarah Connor Chronicles, though. Derek spent considerably more time in the past, and had to live within the culture quite a bit more.

      • I never saw the Sarah Connor Chronicles; when there are too many continuities and most of them are considered as semi-official canon, I get annoyed, especially if I can’t tell what’s the official canon. That’s probably why I don’t read American comic books that have been rebooted countless times.

        • I certainly understand your frustration. For what it’s worth, The Sarah Connor Chronicles basically ignored everthing after the first two movies and forked off from there. It was interesting, but it was really an Elseworlds sort of thing.

          • I don’t know what Elseworlds is, but I get your point. By the way, I’ve always wanted to go to Germany (I’m actually applying for a study-abroad trip that’ll stop there for a week or so). Have you visited any WWII-associated sites while there?

            • Elseworlds is a common name for an alternate reality in comics. Like “Red Son,” where infant Kal-El landed in Russia instead of the US.

              Yes, I’ve been to quite a few- it’s actually difficult to *not* see WW2 sites in Germany. There are memorials and museums and documentation centers all over the country. Some of the memorials are amazing and very, very sobering.

              Edit: I just learned that Elseworlds is actually copyrighted by DC Comics. I thought it was more generically used.

    • Belated thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • In a strictly technical sense, he is. What do you think of the David Goyer short story where Superman renounced his American citizenship?

      • I don’t know to be honest, there is always something classically and quintessentially American about him, he’s the American hero really! Although I did read a really funny comic about Superman if he was born British which I loved (especially cos I’m a Londoner who recognised all the jokes!)

  5. As someone who has a framed picture of the TARDIS rendered in the style of Van Gogh hanging above my bed, I have to say that I loved your little geeksplosion.

  6. Pingback: Reborn City: Zahara the Expatriate | Rami Ungar The Writer

    • Thank you! I started with a much, much longer list of characters. If I’d included everyone, the post would have been much, much longer.

  7. Steven, I can’t believe I actually know someone in person who’s been Freshly Pressed! Congratulations on your barrage of WordPress attention, hope you get a lot of new readers because you are one dedicated blogger and all-round cool expat in Germany who deserves it. Way to go!

    • Aeryn wasn’t in an unfamiliar culture, in my opinion. Circumstantially she was forced to live as an expat, but only just barely.

  8. So glad you put Teal’c in there. As I was scrolling, I became worried. ;)
    But also, if Battlestar Galactica is anything to go by; we all are the descendants of expats from the 12 colonies. :D
    Love sci-fi so naturally I loved this. :)

  9. Then there was John Blackstar, a kind of Buck Rogers ripoff really. He was a goodly hero of my cartoon years. Hmm….showing my age maybe?

    • It’s all good. I’m fond of a lot of the sci-fi from the late 70s and early 80s. Thanks for the comment!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thank you for stopping by. Where are you abroad?

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  10. Odd coincidence for me, this – I was thinking about Buck Rogers this morning and ended up watching the theme tune on youtube feeling vaguely comforted by the fact that if the 25th century looks that much like the 1970s then I won’t have missed much.

    • I would be much happier with the current time-frame if I had an Ambuquad. I’m just sayin’.

      By the way, you have a most excellent user name, my hoopy friend.

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thank you for the kind words!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  11. I must say that the list covers an impressive range of works. Now the question is, where do we place the gods from American Gods? Maybe they should be considered immigrants? In many ways, they seem closer to expats than immigrants though…

  12. Utterly awesome post! We are a sci-fi loving family and I loved your references to many of our favorite beloved characters! So glad you included Stargate’s Teal’c and of course, the Doctor! I am a third-culture kid – my parents immigrated to the states before I was born.
    One stranded sci-fi character I thought of as I was reading your blog was John Carter of Mars. :)

    • Thanks! I know I may lose some geek cred for saying this, but I haven’t read any John Carter yet! It come highly recommended by my friends, though.

      • I have to admit I haven’t read any either. :) It’s on my list of must-reads. I just requested a set of books from the library so now I’m committed. I probably am one of the few people who actually enjoyed the movie but that’s probably because I didn’t have the books to compare it to and I tend to enjoy movies that 12 year old boys like (go figure). Tschüss!

  13. Great post and congrats. I am gald to have found you via Freshly Pressed! Would you mind if I reblog this on my Chronicles of Serbia WPblog? All the best,From another expat doing time on the Dunav.

    • Sorry for the lengthy delay in my response; I don’t mind a reblog at all. Thank you for stopping by.

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  14. John Carter, from the Barsoom novels (ignore the film, they messed it up anyway). He relocates to Mars by the power of magic and wishful thinking and once he is there finds it suits him far better than earth anyway. It even stops him being a slightly racist, pro-slave dude to a man who is all about the freedom, especially for the race of Black Barsoomians who are in slavery to their religion.

    • I definitely need to read this one. I still want to see the movie- most movie adaptations don’t quite match the books, in my experience, but I like to cherish them as their own unique variant. Only rarely does it make me angry.

      Thank you for stopping by!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  15. Pingback: Freshly Pressed: Friday Faves — Blog — WordPress.com

    • Thank you!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  16. Stranger in a Strange Land. It took me nearly a year to get my 24 year old daughter to read it. Likely my favorite author. I read this book 35 years ago, I still remember most of it. My daughter says I’m Jubal. An excellent read for someone with a little intelligence. My copy of the book came back in pieces, she read it 4 times in a row, loves it. Waiting is fulfilled.

    • I re-read this book quite often. It’s one of the few that I come back to over and over again. Being compared to Jubal is a high compliment indeed!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  17. Love this post, especially as it references Stranger in a strange land plus so much of the TV and film that I’ve enjoyed over the years.

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  18. Pingback: Weekly Mc-Iron-Man-Muffin Links | The Harlequin Tea Set

  19. I’ve been looking for you all over the place. This resonates with me on so many levels I don’t know what to say, other than thank you. I’m in the third season of the current Doctor Who series…gotta go!

    • Thanks! How are you enjoying the Doctor Who you’ve been watching? Are you caught up to current adventures yet?

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  20. Wow, what a well done, well thought out, and well written article. It makes me want to watch/rewatch or read many of the things you mentioned. Congrats on being pressed!

    • Thank you!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thank you!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thank you!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  21. Pingback: Choose Your Fate: Doctor Who Edition « The L. Palmer Chronicles

  22. This whole list shows how interesting characters can be as they drift without an anchor in their current culture, and then how they form their own community within their new home.

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  23. It was the word “grokking” in your title that caught my eye – I read that book last summer, and it kind of actually changed my life. Great pick! So funny that you included a fraggle in your very comprehensive list of expats. -a fellow US expat in Scotland

    • Thanks for stopping by! I’m curious to know how the book changed your life. And of course I couldn’t had to include a Fraggle. :)

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thanks!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • Thank you!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

    • I think that depends on which flavor of Transformers. Original Recipe, the Autobots would be refugees and the Decepticons would be an invading military force. Neither one is precisely expatriate.

      That being said, Tranformers fall into the same pitfall as most comic books- there are so many versions of the story that not every one matches precisely.

  24. brilliant blog 99% of the programs mentioned i know of lol and have seen.. brought back some memories especially of fraggle rock and i recently brought the complete farscape on dvd.

    daz

    • Thanks for stopping by!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  25. Pingback: This Liebster Award | nuriandnerdpower

    • Thank you! I’ll have to get back to the Liebster at some point in the future.

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  26. Interesting point about the Doctor. I’m an expat too – New Zealander living in England. I think everyone should live overseas for a bit as it gives you (if you do it right) such a good lesson in how your ways of doing things are not the only way or necessarily the best ways.

    Also, Invader Zim counts as an expat, I think. Or maybe he’s more like an undercover spy…

  27. And Spock is a triple expat. He’s in Starfleet because he already knows he won’t be accepted on Earth OR Vulcan, and of course, he’s no Romulan either…..

    • I don’t know if I agree that you can be a ‘triple-expat.’ It’s really a pass/fail sort of status. You either are or aren’t one. Still, good thought. Thanks for stopping by!

      (I am just now getting around to going back through all the comments from this post to make sure I didn’t miss anyone.)

  28. Pingback: Blog Years and Birthdays | rarasaur

  29. You forgot to include Data. Not only is he the last of his kind, he’s one-of-a-kind. He did have an evil brother/twin, but Lor was an earlier model, which still makes Data one-of-a-kind.

    • I don’t think he fits- being an expatriate is about living in a place outside of your home culture. Data has no “home culture,” because he’s a created being. When he was first activated, he was a blank slate. I’d no more lump Data into my list than Johnny Five.

  30. And don’t forget that well known cat enthusiast ‘Alf’! Superman is widely known in adoptee circles as a fellow adoptee, not an ex-pat as he was raised by adopters.

  31. Pingback: At The Closing Of The Year | Doin' Time On The Donau

Comments are closed.