Nuclear weapons have long played a role in popular culture – in films like Dr. Strangelove, The Hunt for Red October, and The Day After. We’ve all rooted for James Bond as he rushed to stave off nuclear catastrophes, and we’ve cringed watching a radiation-fueled Godzilla terrorize Tokyo. More recently, we’ve even seen Madame Secretary wrestle with how to handle Iran’s nuclear program.
But there are many more nuclear references in pop culture sliding right under most people’s radar. Did you know, for example, that the desolate wasteland in the Mad Max series is the result of a nuclear apocalypse? Or that the rise of 1984’s fictional world order followed a supposed nuclear war in the 1950s?
Nuclear weapons often provide a more subtle – sometimes maybe unintended – backdrop to stories in pop culture. Consider these examples, from well-known movies and shows:
with the song 99 red
balloonsYou might have heard it in the
movie Wedding Crashers or Watchmen, or in a scene from Gilmore Girls?