Top 51 Sci-Fi Spaceships

We asked you to vote for your favourite screen sci-fi spaceships, and now, here are the results…

The Ark from “When Worlds Collide” fails to make the Top 50

Time for another controversy-fuelling SFX countdown, as we present the results of your favourite screen sci-fi spaceships vote.

We had a biggest response to this poll than any other we’ve ever run (the SFX awards aside, because they’re a slightly different case) and it’s been fun putting this together and having a poll full of HARDWARE and STARSCAPES rather a lot of glum-looking vampires for once. This is what sci-fi’s all about, surely?

So what are you waiting for – get browsing!

Words by: Narin Bahar, Jayne Nelson, Steven Ellis, Alasdair Stuart, Richard Edwards

51 Valley Forge

Silent Running

WHY IT’S GREAT And the Valley Forge is great, which is why we made this a Top 51. We hated seeing this elegant greenhouse in space languishing in obscurity just outside the top 50, so we cheated so we could include it. The Valley Forge was one of a fleet of ships near Saturn that contained the last of Earth’s forests in vast geodesic domes (don’t ask how anyone on Earth was breathing). It was also the last surviving ship after orders came from Earth to nuke all the forests, but one botanist on board the Forge refused to let his ship mates carry out the order, killing the rest of the crew and kidnapping the ship. (He’s not a very bright botanist though… he steers the ship away from the sun then it takes him ages to realise that the reason the plants are dying is the inability to photosynthesise).

WHAT IT MIGHT FAIL ITS SPACE MOT ON Rust, moss on the engines, dandelion clocks clogging up the air recycling systems…

IF IT WERE A REAL VEHICLE IT WOULD BE… One of those barges you see on canals covered in pot plants.

LOOKS A BIT LIKE:




 

50 Engineers’ Ship

Alien, Aliens, Prometheus

WHY IT’S GREAT A truly alien-looking alien ship that looked mightily creepy and mysterious and cavernous when we first saw it back in 1979. Even in 2012, in Prometheus, when we first learned it was an Engineers’ Ship (though Engineer is only our term for the aliens) it still looked iconic and wonderfully weird. But the design is not random. It’s all part of the none-too-subtle Freudian imagery Ridley Scott inserted into the first Alien movie (with thanks to concept artist HR Giger, who had a thing about willies; one of his most famous pre-Alien paintings was called “Landscape XX” but is better know as “Penis Landscape”). Warning: we’re about to get gynecological.

The ship is in the shape of a pair of woman’s legs splayed apart. Why specify a woman’s legs? Because the ship has a vagina – or an entrance in the place where a vagina would be if they were legs. Not convinced yet? Then how about the fact that the Nostromo away team enters the ship via the vagina and discover… yep – eggs. Metaphorically, the “mother” ship gives birth to the alien.

WHAT IT MIGHT FAIL ITS SPACE MOT ON Having a gaping great hole in it for a start. There’s also evidence of an alarming amount of slime and seepage. Plus any engineer performing an MOT would probably end up with a facehugger kiss as well, so it’s not doing itself any favours.

IF IT WERE A REAL VEHICLE IT WOULD BE… A catamaran

LOOKS A BIT LIKE:

 




 

49 Asgard Ships

Stargate SG-1

WHY IT’S GREAT As one of the most powerful races that the SGC encountered the Asgard had vessels that were always a force to be reckoned with and would often be victorious even when faced with overwhelming odds. Having an aesthetic which combined Viking iconography and classic space ship lines the Asgard ships were reminiscent of a longships floating in space. Or very big bottle openers.

WHAT IT MIGHT FAIL ITS SPACE MOT ON Satnav and steering are always a bit suspect on the older races’ space ships, not exactly MOT busting but certainly irritating on longer journeys.

IF IT WERE A REAL VEHICLE IT WOULD BE… A Volvo

LOOKS A BIT LIKE: