In 2010, when the mainstream media was just becoming aware of the internet and the dimly lit corners where people with unusual desires can gather together and discuss the weird things they love, a story came out that some diehard Avatar fans found themselves suffering from depression after seeing the movie. The idea was that the world of Pandora—Avatar’s colorful, monster-filled setting—was so majestic and beautiful that returning to the real world after seeing it was a crushing disappointment. Some people supposedly even expressed the desire to die in real life in hopes that they’d be reborn on Pandora.
This all does make sense on some level, since we barely have any monsters in the real world, and the ones we do have don’t fly or let you attach your ponytail tentacle to their brains or whatever. Plus, real life’s colors are pretty shitty, nobody has blue skin, and we all wear pants instead of loincloths. Actually, real life is pretty shitty in general.
After five torturous years of waiting, though, scientists may have finally discovered a way for us to travel to Pandora without having to take part in a suicide ritual with people on a message board. According to The Hollywood Reporter, HP has teamed up with Avatar director James Cameron’s production company and 20th Century Fox to develop “an immersive digital experience” that will “create an entirely new paradigm for how you expand and grow a story world.” You read that right: An entirely new paradigm.
That all sounds good—we assume, because we don’t actually understand any of it—but the problem is that nobody is saying what this “digital experience” really is. Is it a virtual reality/hologram system that transforms your home into the jungles of Pandora? Is it a machine that dumps your brain into the body of a Na’vi so you can fall in love and have ponytail tentacle sex? (Avatar was a really weird movie.) Or, better yet, is it a flashy new website that provides updates on the future of the Avatar series with high-tech social media integration? We hope it’s that last one, because living in a world where that doesn’t exist is seriously bumming us out.