Follow TV Tropes


Literature / The Message

Go To

First published in The Magazine Of Fantasy And Science Fiction (February 1956 issue), this Short Story by Isaac Asimov is focused on explaining an Historical In-Joke; who first wrote "Kilroy was here"?

The story opens with three unnamed war veterans drinking and celebrating their past. Discussion turns to a Memetic Mutation, first seen in northern Africa. Switching to that instance, we also change perspectives, telling the story from George's view. George has come from the future to collect original research on infantrymen in World War II. Unable to resist temptation, he leaves a tag for anyone who passes by to see; Kilroy Was Here.

This story has been reprinted five times; New Worlds Science Fiction (issue #54, December 1956), Earth is Room Enough (1957), The Far Ends Of Time And Earth (1979), Isaac Asimov Der Tausendjahresplaner (1984), and The Complete Stories, Volume 1 (1990).

Examples of tropes within this work: