"I think we're all mentally ill; those of us outside the asylums only hide it a little better (and maybe not that much better after all)."
A thread sometimes seen in Sci-fi, is that humans - all of us - are several cans short of a six pack. It could be the emotional drive that overrides logic
, or more of a "What were they thinking?!"
when aliens watch us go about our day, but when looked at compared to all the races in space, Humanity is bonkers. This can be to our advantage, as a sane race would never even consider trying to sneak into the fortress dressed up as pizza delivery men. What really drives other races crazy is that it sometimes works
This also makes it very difficult for Humans to be mind-controlled, for as soon as the Puppeteer Parasites
get inside, they realize how nuts we are and flee
, or are driven insane by the hosts.
Of course, other species might seem just as insane to humans.
May be the reason Humans Are Warriors
, or the reason Humans Are the Real Monsters
, or the reason Humans Are Morons
, or the reason Humans Are Cthulhu
On the other hand, it may just be the reason Humans Are Special
Also compare Confusion Fu
(sorry, no "Humans Are.." comparison here).
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Anime And Manga
- Death Note: This is pretty much the conclusion of Ryuk's Human Observation Journal (which he finds highly amusing.)
- In Macross Frontier, this was in fact the entire cause of the show's central conflict. The Vajra, being Bee People, didn't quite get humanity's whole 'individuality' thing, and assumed our lack of clear, unifying purpose and direction to be the result of a catastrophic breakdown of our Hive Mind. Being nice, altruistic types, they decided to rescue the being they believed to be the human Hive Queen, Ranka, and the rest was history. To their credit, though, they eventually realised their mistake, and even went as far as to sacrifice millions of their own to prevent the Frontier fleet from being obliterated by the Big Bad before offering them a place to stay on their homeworld.
- In Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro, this trait subverts Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: the (arguably) main character came to the human world because if he'd stayed in the underworld he'd have died of starvation. Basically, he feeds on the energy that makes people do crazy and wrong things like premeditated murder, and there's plenty of that. In the early manga, he's focused on trying to find food, but then the really crazy people put their plans in motion and he basically has to save humanity to protect his food source. He specifically states that he's not capable of understanding humans because Humans Are Insane, too.
- Semi-example in Puella Magi Madoka Magica. At one point Kyubey says that in his culture, emotions are considered a mental disorder. Although he never comes out and says this, the implication is that he and his kind view all humans as insane for having emotion. There is also an implication of Power Born of Madness from their perspective, as they are trying to turn emotions into energy.
- Insanity is a huge theme in Soul Eater, with numerous characters losing their minds at least once throughout the series, whether it's because of the black blood, Asura's influence, or in the case of people like Dr. Stein, already being insane to begin with.
- Desty Nova firmly believes this and is trying to deal with this realization for many years trying to defeat "karma". Wich he seems to pull off nicely since he is simply impossible to get rid of no matter what sick acts he commits. Nova himself is probably the biggest lunatic of us all, of course.
- The Killing Joke:
Faced with the inescapable fact that human existence is mad, random and pointless, one in eight of them crack up and go stark slavering buggo! Who can blame them? In a world as psychotic as this... any other response would be crazy!
- Several of the Joker's more notorious schemes are attempts to prove this is true to everybody else — and maybe to himself. Otherwise, he'd have to face the possibility that maybe the world isn't crazy... that maybe it's just him.
- comic/guardians of the galaxy
a long diatribe is set up about how earth is crazy and logic holds no sway there. The repulsion of dark Phoenix and galactius are discussed as examples of why it's dangerous.
- Men In Black: This could be why human thought is viewed as an infectious disease by some aliens. No wonder they don't want us to get our hands on a Universal Translator.
- In the direct-to-DVD sequel, Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation, the Arachnids (or Bugs) use this as a justification for attacking and taking over humanity.
Control Bug (speaking through a human): Poor creatures. Why must we destroy you? I'll tell you why. Order is the tide of creation. But yours is a species that worships... the one over the many. You glorify your intelligence... Because it allows you to believe anything. That you have a destiny. That you have a right. That you have a cause. That you are special. That you are great. But in truth, you are born insane . And such misery... cannot be allowed... to spread!
- In Avatar, when telling Jake he will be taught the ways of the Na'vi, Mo'at says, "We will see if your insanity can be cured."
- Spoken word for word in Stephen King's horror film adaption of The Mist when unstable Mrs. Carmody takes over the grocery store with her group of desperate followers and makes increasingly terrible demands while Eldritch Abominations lurk right outside the windows, as part of the main theme that humanity would automatically drop all the rules when thrown into the dark.
Ollie: As a species we're fundamentally insane. Put more than two of us in a room, we pick sides and start dreaming up ways to kill one another. Why do you think we invented politics and religion?
Live Action TV
- In Star Trek: The Original Series Spock often feels this way about humans. Particularly emphasized in the Leonard Nimoy song "Highly Illogical".
- When it comes to humanity, the other species in Farscape have a sample set of one, and may not fully grasp that Crichton doesn't really meet our commonly accepted definition of "sane". His constant Earth pop culture references that nobody else could possibly get surely can't help.
- This seems to be a common view by the vast majority of Stargate's aliens, granted even the transplanted humans seem to think this of the Tau'ri. Though this may reflect mostly on Stargate SG-1... okay, mostly on Jack.
- The group Puzzlebox has a song, appropriately titled "Nuts," about an alien scout's observations of our species.
They're nuts, I say, Commander! Their heads aren't screwed on right.
The bird of wisdom took one look at them and then took flight!
As near as I can tell, they just get by on luck and guts.
I've studied them, and I should know, they're nuts!
- Humanity is described in Buck Godot
"When Humanity joined the Gallimaufry, the first impressions of established idea sifters were rather disappointing. Yes, they were entertainingly crazy, but their quirks were mere amplifications of other neuroses and psychoses that had been in and out of vogue for millennia."
- Humans are noted for being the first species in the history of the universe to invent popsicles. Freezing liquids on sticks? And then eating them?? Madness!
- Aliens can get rather crazy too, especially when the Winslow is involved.
- We're also insane for a different reason. We're one of the few species that views the Winslow as vaguely annoying and not as an object of worship.
- On mezzacotta:
- xkcd: This one. Be sure to read the Alt Text.
- Coyote thinks that the ability of humans to imagine and believe, creating mythical spirits (like Coyote himself) and giving them power through their beliefs, is indicative of this. And yet, he also admires the human ability to see beauty in everything, "even a flame!"
- In Galaxy Rangers, humans are considered either uniquely wonderful fuel for the Queen's Psychocrypt, or utterly insane. The Series 5 Rangers do virtually nothing to counteract the reputation, aside from adding Crazy Awesome to the list.
- In Futurama, In the epilogue of the episode "The Day The Earth Stood Stupid", Nibbler updates his log on Fry's salvation over the Brainspawn, and to resume watching the planet ran by "psychotic apes".
- As quoted above, a quick visit to a reasonably decent insane asylum while playing the game of "Spot the Nut" is not easy unless the patients wear uniforms.