with Organic Technology
, usually centered around genetic engineering
. Expect to see a lot of Organic Technology
, sculpted physiques
and Petting Zoo People
walking around... or hopping, swimming, flying, slithering, etc. Many buildings and ships
will be grown, and a general Womb Level
aesthetic will usually prevail. Issues examined may include Designer Babies
, What Measure Is a Non-Human?
, what is
human, various aspects of ecology and effects of modified crops/animals/bacteria. And you'll see Aesops
(particularly Green Aesops
about creating what you can't control), both real and Fantastic
It should be noted that the line between Bio Punk and cyberpunk
is very thin, and many cyberpunk stories will contain Bio Punk elements.
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Anime & Manga
- The comic book series Elephantmen deals with human-animal hybrids created in a war between Africa and China, and their struggle to reintegrate into society being essentially former child soldiers.
- The X-Men series and its spinoffs trade pretty heavily in biopunk themes.
- Finder fits into this very well, being set in an After the End scenario where a biotech-based civilisation collapsed, but many of its products, being self-reproducing living things, are still around.
- Much of David Cronenberg's work, particularly:
- Shivers, where a scientist accidentally creates a sexually-transmitted Puppeteer Parasite, causing in turn a Zombie Apocalypse of rape zombies.
- Rabid, where an experimental skin graft creates a sort of Bio Punk vampire, whose victims all become rabid zombies and attack Montreal.
- The Brood, where a revolutionary psychiatric method results in hideous bodily mutations.
- Scanners, where a pharmacological error creates a Bizarre Baby Boom of socially-maladjusted, creepy psychics.
- Videodrome, where warring ideologies use communications technology to mutate viewers into monstrous pawns.
- Naked Lunch is Bio Punk via The Beat Generation, with sentient typewriters, giant bugs, and monsters who give you tremendous creativity in exchange for blowjobs.
- eXistenZ, where genetically-engined amphibians are used to create Organic Technology video game hardware.
- The Fly, where a failed teleportation experiment fuses Jeff Goldblum and... well, a fly.
- Repo! The Genetic Opera plays this with a healthy helping of Cyber Punk and Gorn.
- Aeon Flux (based on the animated show)
- The Island
- Tokio Gore Police
- The Island Of Doctor Moreau, the 1996 version, which was a departure from book.
- Monster Blood Tattoo seems to cross this genre with Steampunk and a healthy dose of nightmares.
- Night's Dawn, a trilogy of well-researched Space Opera novels by Peter F. Hamilton.
- In the Courts of the Crimson Kings, a sci-fi novel by S.M. Stirling set on John Carter of Mars-type world made plausible with Bio Punk technology given to the Martians by Ancient Astronauts.
- Jeff VanderMeer's Ambergris stories, especially the newest novel Finch are Urban Fantasy Bio Punk, or perhaps Spore Punk, with the Graycaps' fungus-based high technology that almost passes for magic, as far as the humans are concerned.
- Hell, in Finch we even get fungus-cyborgs in the form of the Partials.
- China Miéville's Bas-LagCycle, though closer to Dungeon Punk, has elements of this with the ReMade: bio-thaumaturges can warp flesh, bone and biology to heal, remake a being as something new, or (far, far more often) to punish.
- The books Oryx and Crake and The Dry Flood by Margaret Atwood are set in the near future, and features many many bio-engineered animals, most notably pigs who can grow human organs for use in transplants.
- The Maximum Ride series skirt this genre, with the protagonists being genetically engineered bird people that were created by immoral scientists in order to find the secrets of immortality.
- S. Andrew Swann's Moreau Series is a perfect example. The protagonist is Nohar Rajasthan; a Half Tiger/Half Human Private Investigator in a world where hybrid "Moreaus" (As in "The Island of Doctor Moreau") are confined to ghettos as second class citizens. The series also has genetically improved humans, called "Franks" as in Frankenstein, and aliens.
- Beggars In Spain by Nancy Kress, along with the attendant novels in the trilogy.
- The 'Leviathan series by Scott Westerfeld has fabricated beasties created after Darwin discovered the "chains of life". Also uses LEGO Genetics.
- The foundations of biopunk were arguably laid down as early as 1818, with the release of Shelley's Frankenstein — which means that biopunk was among the first science fiction ever published.
- Another proto-biopunk tale that significantly predates the discovery of DNA is The Island of Doctor Moreau.
- The West Of Eden series by Harry Harrison is set in an Alternate History where dinosaurs never went extinct and the Earth is dominated by the reptilian Yilanč who use specially bred creatures as everything from microscopes to submarines.
- Brave New World centers around cloning,genetic manipulation and it's impact on society. Arguably the Trope Codifier.
Live Action TV
- Dungeons & Dragons: The Lords of Madness source book includes a "Fleshwarper" prestige class, designed for creating this sort of thing in a Heroic Fantasy setting.
- Shadowrun offers Bioware, genetically modified cultured tissue that can be implanted in characters to provide many of the same benefits of the more traditional Cyberware.
- The GURPS supplement "Bio-Tech" is all about Biopunk.
- The Transhuman Space setting has Bio Punk elements, including bioroids (biological androids), bioshells (biological bodies controlled by AIs or ghosts), parahumans and genetically-engineered oddities such as pharm goats (goats that produce drugs in their milk). 4th Edition Bio-Tech is heavily informed by Transhuman Space, which in turn was based on the vignettes in 3rd Edition Bio-Tech.
- Eclipse Phase is Post Cyber Punk, but most of the modifications available are biological in nature, and bio-morphs (bodies which are fundamentally organic— but still often weird) are culturally preferred over Synth-Morphs (robot bodies— derogatorily called the "Clanking Masses") or Pods (half-synth, half-biological bodies, the name comes from the derogatory "Pod-People," a riff on how the biological parts of the bodies are grown). For an example of the sort of bio-mods you can get in this game, see the Sex Switch— which switches your sex at will— or the Skinflex— which allows you to make major cosmetic alterations to yourself in around ten minutes.
- Also, the bio-engineered space-whales that live in the corona of the sun.
- Mortasheen combines this with Mons.
- The aesthetic of the Simic Combine is something reminiscent of this, although not to the same extent as some of the other examples on the page. They are, in essence, to Bio Punk what their cousins, the Izzet League is to Steampunk.
- The Chronicles Of Taras combines this with Diesel Punk. 50's style noir technology, Action Girl and Wrench Wench Characters, every killing tool is an Improvised Weapon, and horrifying Biotech creations.
- Genocide Man: Open-source biotechnology enabled terrorists to create tailored plagues and genetic "deviants" designed as human weapons. In response the UN formed the Genocide Project whose augmented geneticist-soldiers are sanctioned to exterminate deviancies and holders of hazardous ideas, down to the last man, woman, and child.
- Ćon Flux inhabits a world where self-modification is the new makeup.
- Batman Beyond has strong elements of this with the splicers and Kobra cult who are heavily into genetic manipulation.
- Not really a huge concern as of yet, but western cultures are well on the precipice of this being an actual thing.
- Already, cloning is being carried out with animals on small levels, and plastic surgery does touch on some of this.
- Looking forward, nanotechnology has gotten a huge boost by integrating with microscopic organisms, and there have been other breakthroughs, like a prototypical memory storage device utilizing salmon DNA.
- One can say it is Older than Dirt because agriculture uses artificial species. This is especially true for modern day agriculture.
- Today a set of substances (insulin for example) are fabricated using genetically engineered organisms, usually bacterias.