When I read that Suzanne Collins hoped that readers of The Hunger Games would think about what similarities exist in our own world that remind us of life in Panem, my first thought was that it sounded a little too much like a cliché book report. Sure, okay… we have reality television, and some notable gaps in wealth. But really, how could our lives be anything like that of The Hunger Games?
As I started to look a little more closely at our current culture; however, I noticed more and more the sometimes startling parallels. It’s more than just the current trend of stars coloring their hair in unnatural shades. Reality shows receive some of their highest ratings during episodes that include physical violence. The gap between the rich and poor is ever widening, with the top-earning 20 percent of Americans receiving 49.4 percent of all income generated in the U.S. While extreme poverty (as pictured on the far right in my own hometown of Detroit) is not only present but increasing. Though some debate whether or not human-induced climate change exists, there is no question that weather patterns are shifting and ice caps are melting. But then, an actual televised death match? I don’t know…
I would love to hear some opinions from you savvy Mockingjays. What do you think? Is the idea of a Panem-like future a valid possibility, or do you think it would never happen?
Some of you might recall the character Tigris, a feline-ish Capitol citizen who Katniss met in “Mockingjay.” Her face was surgically transformed to resemble that of a cat, complete with a short snout, whiskers, and tattooed black and gold stripes. Not only did she change her appearance, but she took it upon herself to change her demeanor as well by growling and twitching her tail (also surgically attached) when she was angry. She even enjoyed a hearty breakfast of raw meat. Now, granted, this kind of radical metamorphosis is not all that popular today. In fact, it is very rare. Dennis Avner and Eric Sprague are two of the most well-known “transpecies,” but who knows how many more walk the streets?
Dennis chose to alter himself due to his Native American heritage. He had a discussion with a Huron Chief, who inspired him to follow the ways of his totem, the tiger. As a result, Dennis has had 22+ years of work done on him. He had implants placed in his forehead, nose flattened surgically, teeth pulled and replaced with fangs, and his lip split. Likewise, his cheeks are made of silicone, his nails are filed into talons, and he’s received several tattoos and dermal implants so that he can have nylon cat whiskers protruding from his cheeks.
During his undergraduate years, Eric decided to transform his appearance for a project involving his interest in body-based performance art. “The Lizardman” has had over 600 hours of tattooing done to replicate the scales of a reptile. He has also had five Teflon horns implanted beneath the skin on his eyebrows to form horned ridges, teeth filed into points and his tongue split.
I have no problem with gluing whiskers to your face to dress up as a cat for Halloween. But changing your entire appearance and behavior to portray an animal? That may be going a little too far. Can you imagine how difficult it would be to function properly if your teeth were sharpened into points, or if your tongue had been severed? However, these two “transpecies” have managed to live with their body modifications for quite some time.
What do you think? Will these modifications one day become all the rage?
[Sources: The Examiner]
There is some debate about what exactly the map of Panem looks like; and if you’re anything like me, while reading The Hunger Games you found yourself wishing Suzanne Collins would have painted the picture in a little more detail. Perhaps that is some of the lure – the mystery and opportunity to imagine it on your own. That is exactly what V. Arrow did, in very thorough detail. While authoring Smart Pop’s The Panem Companion: An Unofficial Guide to Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games (December), she researched not only the novel, but also the placement of tectonic plates and possible flood regions.
I chose to center part of the cataclysm in the Gulf of Mexico as a tectonic shift and moved the Yucatan Peninsula, rather than sinking it. Mostly this is because I ♥ Finnick/Annie and wanted them to have a little island for the D4 Victor’s Village. Plus, it doesn’t really alter the topography of any other District, so hey! While feasible, it wasn’t really jelling for me. [Her collaborator] brought up that there would be a natural floodbreak at the Sierra Nevadas and, likely, the Grand Canyon. Incidentally this went into a long discussion about the Mississippi River being the dam that broke in the 70th Games, but that’s not really pertinent!.”
According to Arrow’s map, I would be in District 10. Where would you live? What do you think of her district placements?
In “The Hunger Games,” the country of Panem is described as having risen from the ashes of North America after war and natural disasters practically destroyed the land. This leads me, and many others I’m sure, to wonder…how close is our society to becoming like Panem? In this series, entitled “Impending Panem,” I’ll be exploring the fashion, technology, mannerisms and different aspects of the culture of the Capitol, as well as topics and news stories about uprisings, children violence, etc. and how they compare or contrast to our present world. Today, we talk gem implants, or, as our society calls them, microdermal piercings.
Microdermal piercings are semi permanent body piercings. You will also hear them referred to as dermal anchoring or microdermal implants.
Microdermals look pleasing and aesthetic and are rapidly becoming very popular. They are considered a cool alternative to surface body piercing because they are semi permanent. They are quick and convenient.
The technique and size is also so easy that you can have it done practically anywhere on your body. No special tools are required and the procedure is less invasive than an implant. The process is also more comfortable compared to the transdermal or sub dermal implants.
Gem implants were pretty popular with Capitol citizens, but these are causing a lot of unease among medical communities as well as those who are fond of body art and piercings. One concern is that stretching of the skin (such as might happen with swelling, weight loss, weight gain, or pregnancy) or even general physical activities like jogging might cause pain, migration, or other problems. Another is that, depending on where these piercings are implanted, they can be easily ripped out, possibly leaving skin damage and scars. It is recommended that you consult a doctor, or trusted piercing/tattoo business before getting a microdermal piercing. As always, make sure you find a sanitary, professional place to get piercings and tattoos done, and keep the area clean.
I think these are pretty cool, but at this point I don’t think I’d get a microdermal piercing. Maybe in the future, when they find a technique or material that results in less risks/side effects, I might go for it. Until then, I’ll stick with my helix piercing.
Let’s turn the spotlight on you guys. Would YOU get a microdermal piercing? Do you think this phenomenon will take off in our society? Talk it up.
[Source: Body Jewelry Guide]
Click here for a step-by-step look at getting a microdermal piercing.
Capitol.pn has released a message from President Snow to the citizens of Panem. You can now post letters, photos, and postcards to support your favorite tributes through the official website.
This started the gears turning, and now I’m curious to see what sorts of back stories others might imagine as to how Panem began. While reading The Hunger Games, did you envision what might have happened to North America to result in this dystopian future? How far in the future to you see think of the story existing? We’d love to hear the different perspectives on possible prequel events that led to the 74th Hunger Games!
When first reading The Hunger Games one may not have paid much attention to all the wonderful Capitol inventions for staying beautiful, but the beauty editors at Allure could not keep their eyes off of them. Here is a partial list they put together of their favorite beauty inventions from The Hunger Games:
Never a Bad Hair Day. Katniss finds she doesn’t even need a hairbrush. “Instead of struggling with the knots in my wet hair, I merely place my hand on a box that sends a current through my scalp, untangling, parting, and drying my hair almost instantly. It floats down around my shoulders in a glossy curtain,” she says. Even our salon blowouts don’t render those kinds of results.
Microderma-what? Rather than going through painful laser surgery or trying every miracle cream under the sun, the citizens of Panem simply wipe their skin clean of any imperfections with a full body polish. “Not a flaw left on your skin,” one character notes. Dermatologists, are you listening?
Color-Chameleons. While many of us go from pale to paler between the seasons, the citizens of Panem adjust their skin color at will to make a statement. In the third book, many aristocrats have green skin. “It’s a fashion thing—like wearing lipstick,” Everdeen explains. Gaga would be all over that.
What were your favorite beauty inventions from The Hunger Games‘ books? Let us know in the comments!
The Panem Companion is an unofficial guide to everything The Hunger Games and the fandom. It is written by V. Arrow who announced that the guide will be released December 2012. Here is a synopsis of the guide:
From the creator of the most well-known fan map of Panem comes an unofficial guide to Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games series. Writing with an engaging blend of literary insight and true fan passion, Hunger Games fan academic and seasoned media writer V. Arrow brings Panem to life, from how Panem could have evolved from the America we know today to textual clues as to socioeconomics, ethnicity, culture, sexuality, and more in the districts and the Capitol.
The Panem Companion includes a full lexicon of character name etymologies and an updated, fully illustrated, fold-out reference map of Panem.
Please note: Current cover image may not reflect final art.
Movies.com has a new list of the best Districts to live in Panem from Hunger Game fansites! Our very own Lisa weighed in on which District is the best place to call home!
District 2 – Lisa of HungerGamesMovie.org
If you are not on the side of the Rebellion and you had to pick a district to be a part of, District 2 is the place to be! Not only is it full of stone quarries, but it manufactures weaponry, trains Peace Keepers for the Capitol, and provides them with supplies, too. The prime site in District 2 is known as “The Nut,” and it is the main location for all military action. Since District 2 has always sided with the Capitol, they receive extra luxuries for their dedication and are known to be favored by the Capitol. As introduced in The Hunger Games, Tributes Cato and Clove prove to be extreme competitors in the arena due to their advanced weaponry training, which clearly is a result of being from District 2. All Tributes from District 2 are among the few known as Careers, contenders who have been bred to be a part of the Hunger Games.
Read all the other HG fansites picks at Movie.com!
Which District would you pick to live ?
Thanks Perri at Movie.com!