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Touring the Final Frontier

22 Jul, 2010 By: John Latchem

The unique domain of science-fiction has given rise to countless worlds that exist beyond our imaginations. The creativity of the writer is translated into the alien cultures and environments brought to vivid life by the magic of Hollywood in ways that often seem far too real. From the jungles of Pandora to the dunes of Tatooine, we take a look at some of the most iconic worlds to stem from science-fiction and make us not only dream of the stars, but also reflect upon our own home world. 


“Star Trek,” “Stargate,” “Battlestar Galactica,” et al.
The homeworld of humanity. Capital of the United Federation of Planets on “Star Trek.” To those who use the stargates, Earth is known as the Tau’ri, the primary outpost of the race known as the Ancients. Also considered the lost 13th colony by the descendents of the planet Kobol.


“Battlestar Galactica” (Universal)
The prime world of the 12 colonies of Kobol and the center of Colonial culture. As with the other colonies, Caprica’s population was decimated by the Cylon attack, and the planet occupied by the robotic race. Its survivors, under the protection of the Battlestar Galactica, embarked on a perilous quest for a shining planet known as Earth.



“Star Wars” (Fox), “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” (Warner)
For centuries, Coruscant served as the capital of the Galactic Republic. As a result, the whole planet is one giant multilayered city, home to not only the Galactic Senate but also the Jedi Temple. Coruscant was also the center of power for the Galactic Empire under Palpatine.


“Star Wars” (Fox)
The bleak desert world of Tatooine in the Outer Rim Territories is controlled by the Hutts. Twin suns create a harsh reality for its residents. The economy is driven by moisture-farming and crime. Local spaceports are often hives of scum and villainy. Tatooine was the homeworld of Anakin Skywalker as well as his son, Luke.


Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (Fox)
Blanketed by snow and ice, the sixth planet of the remote Hoth system is an ideal hideout for smugglers. The Rebel Alliance established Echo Base here following the destruction of the first Death Star. Native creatures include the aggressive wampas and the docile tauntauns.


Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi (Fox)
The swampy marshes of the planet Dagobah served as the ideal hiding place for the exiled Jedi Master Yoda after the rise of Emperor Palpatine. Yoda’s training of Luke Skywalker on Dagobah set the stage for the defeat of the Empire and the resurrection of the Jedi Order.


Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Ewok Adventures (Fox)
A forest moon in an isolated region of the galaxy, where the Empire chose to construct its second Death Star. The moon is home to the Ewoks, a diminutive bear-like tribal culture that worships the trees and are much more formidable warriors than would appear at first glance.


“Star Trek” (Paramount)
An arid world located 16 light years from Earth and home of the Vulcans, a race whose way of life is marked by a rigid adherence to logic. The Vulcans initiated first contact with Earth in 2063 following Zefram Cochrane’s first warp flight. In ancient times, the embrace of logic under Surak led to a rift with the Romulans, who left the planet and formed a vast empire.


“Star Trek” (Paramount)
Pronounced “Kronos,” Qo’noS is the homeworld of the Klingon Empire. The Klingons are a warrior race obsessed with codes of honor and rituals, similar to the Samurai of ancient Japan. The Klingon language was so well developed in the shows and movies that some hardcore fans can actually speak it.


“Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” (Paramount)
The Bajorans are a deeply spiritual people whose devotion to the Kai, their religious leader, helped them resist the devastating occupation of the Cardassians. Bajorans worship the prophets, a race of noncorporeal beings who exist outside of normal time in a wormhole that connects the Alpha and Gamma quadrants. The wormhole made Bajor and the nearby Deep Space Nine space station key assets in the Federation’s war against the Dominion.


“Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” (Paramount)
The homeworld of the Ferengi Alliance is so wet the native language has 178 different words for rain. Ferengi culture is driven by a male-dominated, crony capitalist mindset in which the profit motive rules all. Their society is led by the Grand Nagus, and all transactions are guided by the 285 Rules of Acquisition.


“Superman” (Warner)
Many legends are told of the planet Krypton, home of Kal-El, the alien who on Earth is best known as Superman. A technologically advanced world in orbit of a red sun, Krypton was destroyed despite the best efforts of its greatest scientist, Jor-El. When exposed to a yellow sun, its inhabitants gain immense powers.


“Doctor Who” (BBC)
Gallifey, located 250 million light years from Earth, is the homeworld of the Time Lords, an ancient race of overseers who grew corrupt from their power. The planet was destroyed in the final battle of the Time War against the Daleks in a desperate act by the last and most famous of the Time Lords, the Doctor, to restore peace.


Dune (Universal)
Barren desert planet rich in deposits of the valuable Melange spice and key to the Emperor Shaddam’s plot to eliminate House Atreides. The world is plagued by gigantic sandworms and home to the Fremen, mysterious people who have long held a prophecy that a messiah would lead them to freedom.


Avatar (Fox)
Pandora is a lush moon of the gas giant Polyphemus, which orbits Alpha Centauri A, about 4.37 light years from Earth. In the mid-22nd Century, a dispute over its natural resources brought humans into conflict with an indigenous population called the Na’vi, who are blue-skinned and 10 feet tall. All life forms are connected through a neural root system.

If you cannot see the planet ballot, click here.

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