We’re pleased to note that the latest appointments to the Order of Canada—the country’s second-highest honor—recognize genre fiction/entertainment and scientific achievements by highlighting some of our favorite people. Among the honorees are a fantasy author, a horror-meister movie director, and a certain David Bowie doppelganger astronaut.
Surprising absolutely no one, “Space Oddity”-singing International Space Station astronaut Colonel Chris Hadfield will receive an Order of Canada. CBC News best describes him as “Canada’s astronautical bard and promoter of all things space” (check out his book trailer for An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth). Whether he’s on Earth or up in the ISS, he’s blowing our minds.
As for the Earthbound honorees, fantasy author Guy Gavriel Kay will become a new member of the Order, “for his contributions to the field of speculative fiction.” His novels have been called historical fantasy for their depictions of fictional realms that resemble real historical periods—such as Justinian I-era Constantinople or Spain during the reign of El Cid—closely enough to be called alternate history, but with some fantasy elements thrown in. He was also hand-picked by Christopher Tolkien to help with editing J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion. (Check out our Pop Quiz at the End of the Universe with Kay!)
Also recognized was writer-director David Cronenberg, who ensured that we could never unsee the horrific Jeff Goldblum/insect hybrid in The Fly; who made us long for telepathic powers like the characters in Scanners; and who gave us one of our favorite Stephen King adaptations with The Dead Zone.