Monday, August 24, 2015

The Real Winners & Losers of the 2015 Hugo Awards

Description: The official Hugo Award logo: a black &
gray stylized shape reminiscent of a rocket ship.
The Hugo Awards, nominated and voted on by science fiction fans have a tradition going back over 60 years. Winners are a who's-who of science fiction autnors, Ellison, Bradbury, Asimov, Clarke. Heinlein. Over the years, the sci-fi genre has expanded to include more of it passionate fans who become writers and storytellers-- women, people of color, gay and lesbian writers, and on and on-- which means the Hugos have changed, too.  Of course, this year has seen plenty of controversy as right wing and neo nazi hate groups have attempted to game the system under the Rabid Puppies (and companion group Sad Puppies)-- this blog has written about it here, here, here and here.

This weekend, at WorldCon, the 2015 Hugo Award winners were announced, and both who did win, and who didn't win are equally as important. Sad and Rabid Puppies slate pushers were able to steamroll a number of their favorites onto the ballot... but none of the Puppies-endorsed faves won any awards (which were chosen by the popular vote) with one exception-- "Guardians of the Galaxy"  won for best Long Form Drama. Considering that "Guardians of the Galaxy" was a mainstream blockbuster sucess and had no overt political agenda, it looks like the Puppies' crusade was a wash. In fact, it was less than a wash, it was a gap.

See, in 5 different categories, the overwhelming majority of voters actually chose "No Award" rather than award something to a category that had nothing but Sad/Rabid Puppy nominees. The most damning "No Award"award was when the Sad/Rabid Puppies slate put author and bipedal garbage can John C. Wright on the ballot for 3 different novellas at the same time and he still couldn't get a win.

Here are some standout winners:

  • Cixin Liu's Chinese bestseller The Three Body Problem won in the Best Novel category
  • Dutch author Thomas Olde Heuvelt won Best Novelette for The Day The World Turned Upside Down
  • Ms. Marvel, a comic series I've covered previously here and here, won for its first collection,  "Vol. 1: No Normal" won the Best Graphic Story award
  • Orphan Black won for Best Short-Form Dramatic Presentation, unseating perennial favorite Doctor Who
As I pointed out, the Sad and Rabid Puppies may have lost this orund, and they could try and do this again next year. But for now, it looks like this year's results are a pretty solid rebuke of the Puppies' agenda.

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