Dieselpunk + Steampunk Culture

Is Sci-Fi and/or fantasy a requirement to call something Dieselpunk?

Hey there guys & gals!
We had a great discussion on the Diesel Powered Podcast about Sci-Fi and Fantasy in Dieselpunk. Boss Larry Amyett asked the question whether it is a required element of the genre?

We'd love to get your feedback! Take a listen to the episode and let us know what you think!


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Pulp is good. Ugh, I keep forgetting about that even though I meantioned it earlier haha. And the steampunks have pennydreadfuls. But it sounds a bit awkward to have a story labeled as that for a genre. Oh well, maybe Jonny can have that issue discussed in the next podcast.
Looks like I have to consider Sin City pulp as well, and any other Noir peice.

Pulp isn't really a genre, any more than paperback is. Sin City and Blade Runner are both of the noir variety.

Pulp fiction is refered to as a style, so in turn, using the word "pulp" in that sense can be a good way of saying it. I always here people saying Sin City follows pulp tropes to the extremes, so I personally have no problem with it being called "pulp" instead of "punk". Plus it has a nice ring to it. And it's an easy way to tell the difference between "pulp & punk".

I do, however, still think the name "Diesel Era" or "Diesel" for short can be used to discribe both as a whole, almost as a slang use, instead of having it be accurately labeled. Know what I mean?
The cartoon series Legend of Korra is a good example of fantasy mixed with dieselpunk.
Atterton, Indiana Jones certainly IS Dieselpunk, because it meets all the criteria:
1) Contemporary in origin
2) Decodence - the visual aesthetics of the diesel era (Art Deco, pulp, noir)
3) Element of sci-fi/fantasy - futuristic tech, alien tech, magic, psychic phenomenon, monsters/cryptids...
4) Counter cultural attitude/characters - this is actually the most fluid aspect and can be very different for each fan. Or in the words of Tommy Hancock of ProSe Productions - the "punk" is the person, the fan.

If you consider those four elements you have to agree that Indiana Jones is Dieselpunk.

Further, a comic set in WWII about Frankenstien's monster fight Nazis is TOTALLY Dieselpunk!

So is Star Wars. :)

Well, it meets your criteria.

Don't worry, Jonny, I agree with you ;)
Everyone knows the saying: Dieselpunk is what you want it to be. I see that Atterton requires Dieselpunk to be with a scientific twist. For Indiana Jones, since it's "pulp", we can more accurately consider it Dieselpulp to clairify that there are no sci-fi features, but there is a element of fantasy or adventure.

As for Star Wars, I would personally consider that Dieselpunk as well, just not 100% full blown Dieselpunk. There is no radioactive theme of any sort, so it's not Atompunk. The Empire is based on the Nazis, so that is Decodance. It's not contemprary in origin, but it does have a sense of rebellion, thus adding the "punk" to the picture.

Warhammer 40k is the same kind of deal, and I consider that a good space Dieselpunk example. So I guess warhammer 40k to me is like Star Wars to you lol

Are you familiar with the term "space opera"?


Atterton said:

Are you familiar with the term "space opera"?

You don't think that fits Star Wars perfectly well?

It does. Star Wars is a Dieselpunk Space Opera. :)

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