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Science fiction, fantasy and everything in between. See What If for categories of things that are speculated on. On television, series in this category traditionally have been destined for either cult status or a very short run, with a couple very notable exceptions.
The term 'Speculative Fiction' was originally a "backronym" for the initials SF; at the time, some writers felt that science fiction, or 'sci-fi', now equated to flying saucers and rubber monsters, and wanted to distinguish themselves with a new genre label. The desire for a separate category became even greater when people began to apply the sci-fi label to horror films containing blatantly supernatural elements (such as various immortals) but few if any science-based elements whatsoever. Over time, however, the term 'Speculative Fiction' grew to become a Super-Trope covering not only what self - described Speculative Fiction authors wrote, but also the Sci Fi and Horror B-movies they were trying to distinguish themselves from. Nevertheless, Speculative Fiction can be applied to a work -- correctly or incorrectly -- in order to help it avoid the Sci Fi Ghetto; it can allow the more pretentious to believe that their favourite work is a proper 'literary' work with no connection to and thus obvious superiority over that geeky science fiction or fantasy.
Today Speculative Fiction covers pretty much the entire fantastic end of the Sliding Scale of Realistic Versus Fantastic, including Fantasy, Science Fiction, Horror, and other, less well known genres. However, there are many speculative fiction stories that fall on the border between genres, and others that may be completely unclassifiable. Furthermore, many of these genres can be either used to terrify or Played for Laughs, with the latter producing such genres as comic SF and comedy - horror. Often subject to Just Here for Godzilla.
Speculative Fiction is generally seen as including, but is not limited to:
- Science Fiction
- Alternate History
- Bizarro Fiction
- Fairy Tale
- Fantastic Noir
- Mons Series
- New Weird, non-derivative Horror, Scifi and Fantasy mostly blended together.
- Ontological Mystery
- Punk Punk
- Science Fantasy - Mix And Matched scifi and fantasy elements
- Supernatural Fiction - It's all about ghosts, witches, suspense, and mystery
- Vampire Fiction
- Weird West
- Werewolf Works
- Zombie Stories
Overlap With Other Genres
- Mundane Fantastic, fantasy elements intrude on mundane everyday life.
- Paranormal Investigation
- Paranormal Romance
- Speculative Documentary