By Kim Huett: Outland is the most unlikely comedy series ever made in Australia. According to the ABC website devoted to it, Outland is a six-part comedy series about a gay science fiction fan club. In actual fact the science fictional element is fairly light and the club is just an excuse to bring together five disparate characters who otherwise wouldn’t be seen dead together. On the other hand I’ve attended meetings of more than one science fiction club where this seems just as true so I wouldn’t call Outland unrealistic in this regard.
The series was inspired by a short movie which explored the idea that there are other things beside their sexual orientation which people might be embarrassed to admit to. This plot became the first episode of Outland and set the tone for the entire series and the difficulties these geeky, gay, and not always socially adept science fiction fans have of functioning as a group. The show is by no means perfect but it’s still an entertaining look at how a club can manage not to function but somehow still exist.
The original short film shown at Aussiecon 4 is available on YouTube: