General Question

SuperMouse's avatar

Why do people in the future always wear black and gray?

Asked by SuperMouse (30782points) May 25th, 2009

Yesterday I saw Terminator: Salvation and I noticed that everyone in this post-apocalyptic world wore only shades of black and gray. It got me thinking that this seems to be the way in all post-apocalyptic future movies. Why aren’t there any colorful clothes in the future? I mean there must be thrift stores with used clothes right? So why don’t some of these folks pick up something with a little panache?

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24 Answers

eponymoushipster's avatar

post-apocalypse, it’s pretty looked down on to be sporting hawaiian shirts and flip flops. a tad “garish” for the whole “end of humanity” thing.

Bobbydavid's avatar

Who’s got the time machine?

SuperMouse's avatar

@eponymoushipster but why? I mean it is the end of humanity, we’re all fighting for the resistance and we may be doomed anyway, why not go out with style? Now with all the flying debris flip flops might not be a good choice, but Converse sneakers come in all kinds of cool colors and Ugg boots are thick and could probably deflect molten steel.

Jeruba's avatar

That would be part of the depiction of a grim future in the interpretation of a production designer who was looking to achieve certain visual effects. Realism doesn’t enter into it. Some futuristic films do feature colorful garb. Even with their uniforms, the Star Trek folks wear color.

[ Example 1 ] [ Example 2 ]

SuperMouse's avatar

@Jeruba if I were a production designer I would think that @eponymoushipster ‘s Hawaiian shirts and flip-flops would help accentuate the grimness, you know in an ironic “the world is about to end and I’m wearing a shirt with giant blue flowers,” kind of way.

Jeruba's avatar

@SuperMouse, I’d like to see that movie.

Pcrecords's avatar

Back to the future II was fairly colourful and spookily correct as Nike are now producing martys trainers.

SuperMouse's avatar

@Jeruba at least it would be a feast for the eyes!

dannyc's avatar

Bleak future ran out of organic pigments which were only decorative and found “non-essential”.

eponymoushipster's avatar

@SuperMouse @Jeruba exactly. Star Trek always had a hopeful, positive bend. whatsmore, it was not in any way post-apocalyptic. well, i take that back. in Star Trek lore, there was a 3rd World War. What’s interesting, in Star Trek: First Contact humanity is shown wearing dark, shabby-ish clothes. The “bright and shiny” Star Trek look only takes over years afterwards, when that’s all far in the past.

Star Wars is somewhat “post apocalypse”, and the colors there are fairly dim (compare Episode 1 or 2 – if you can stand them, with 4–6).

Maybe we’re all just very depressed, and it’s affecting our habits.

ubersiren's avatar

I always thought it was representative of the lack of individuality or personality that people have in the future. Maybe because of government surveillance or extreme hardships or whatever.

eponymoushipster's avatar

That’s a good point, @ubersiren.

In some instances, this might link, mentally, with something like the Holocaust, evoking similar tones.

TitsMcGhee's avatar

What about Zenon?

I think most ‘serious’ sci fi films have the future in blacks and gray and silvers because it seems streamlined and machine-like.

bea2345's avatar

It may be an economy measure: you can buy those colours cheaply, by the bale. Some Sci-Fi movies strike me as having been made because they found something in the prop room, left over from making the last film.

YARNLADY's avatar

Natural garments, such as cottons, leathers, wool, and linen do not come in colorful colors. The color must be added and is not an easy task. When people are more concerned where their next meal and water is coming from (you thought water came out of a tap, didn’t you), they cannot take the time and effort to add color to their clothing.

tiffyandthewall's avatar

because the future is bleak?

Jeruba's avatar

@TitsMcGhee, have you been away? I’ve missed you.

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

I’ve just chosen eponymoushipster as my shotgun for the apocalypse.

eponymoushipster's avatar

@hungryhungryhortence as long as we can grab some brewskis as things are going down, man…

Pcrecords's avatar

@eponymoushipster loving your answers so far but a small point. Star Wars is set in the past hence “A long time ago in a galaxy far far away”

eponymoushipster's avatar

@Pcrecords true. but even then, they knew…they knew…

TitsMcGhee's avatar

@Jeruba: Yeah, I have been working a lot since I got home, and I was seeing this guy for awhile, but I’m trying to jump back on the fluther horse. Thanks for noticing! Makes me feel loved :)

derekpaperscissors's avatar

Because individuality will be more scorned in the future than it already is now. :p

Samant's avatar

So why are you not individuals? Who has removed it?

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