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Thu, 9th Feb '06 2:39 PM


This from Google's Word of the Day ~

deus ex machina: an agent who appears unexpectedly to solve an apparently insoluble difficulty.

Anyone care to elaborate?!

Kravfighter  (Level: 162.6 - Posts: 565)
Thu, 9th Feb '06 3:32 PM

Here in Sploofusland isn't that you Sploof?

Hail to you O' God from the machine!
*angelic choirs can be heard from above*

Will things go more smoothly if we make a sacrificial offering? Any volunteers?

Geniuswaitress  (Level: 52.1 - Posts: 381)
Thu, 9th Feb '06 3:59 PM

In theatre it's usually a guy in a fake beard with a diaper on, being lowered by some sketchy mechanical device. That can't be you.

Flybybethy  (Level: 136.6 - Posts: 155)
Thu, 9th Feb '06 4:21 PM

I think (emphasis on the think--World Lit. was years ago) that it was a technique used by the ancient Greek playwrights to solve problems the audience would perceive to be unsolvable; since there was no logical "human" explanation for the resolution, it was attributed to the "god" behind the scenes, so to speak.
This was probably when audiences were much less cynical--they'd never get away with it today LOL

Suzer22  (Level: 166.3 - Posts: 1983)
Thu, 9th Feb '06 9:14 PM

Are you kidding? It still happens all the time! The Blue Fairy saving the day in 'Pinocchio', Glinda the Good Witch descending in a bubble to save the day in "Wizard of Oz'. ANd this, from "In J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, Frodo and Samwise are rescued by the Eagles as Mordor collapses around them, raising the question of why the Eagles could not have helped more on the outward journey (or taken the Ring to Mordor themselves)."

ANd of course, any filmm in which the military shows up just in the nick of time to save the day!

Definition from:

"NOUN: 1. In Greek and Roman drama, a god lowered by stage machinery to resolve a plot or extricate the protagonist from a difficult situation. 2. An unexpected, artificial, or improbable character, device, or event introduced suddenly in a work of fiction or drama to resolve a situation or untangle a plot. 3. A person or event that provides a sudden and unexpected solution to a difficulty."

It's this third definition that makes us all think of you, Justin

It gained favor in the Renaissance, but indeed the "machine" part referred to the mechanism that originally allowed the god-like solver of all problems to enter the scene (descending from above, or rising out of the floor, etc.)

Flybybethy  (Level: 136.6 - Posts: 155)
Fri, 10th Feb '06 9:06 AM

I agree Suzer, but I meant with movies that weren't "fantasy" or "fairy tales" or whatever genre that would're absolutely right though!

Emijean  (Level: 78.4 - Posts: 73)
Tue, 14th Feb '06 8:44 AM

Wasn't that an episode of Lost?

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