Second Life in popular culture

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Since its debut in 2003, Second Life has become increasingly referred[citation needed] by various popular culture mediums, including literary, television, film and music. In addition, various significantly-popular personalities in such mediums have themselves used or employed Second Life for both their own works and for private purposes.

Literature[edit]

  • Catherine Asaro's novel Diamond Star takes place in a future where Second life has evolved into Life Million, an intelligent virtual reality universe extrapolated from Second Life.
  • In early 2008, a Second Life avatar was used as the cover art for Dr. Theodore Rockwell's fiction novel - The Virtual Librarian. The novel was introduced and promoted via Second Life by TheSLAgency.
  • The scifi book ANIMA: a novel about Second Life (ISBN 0-9763168-9-7) written by the avatar Dalian Hansen was published in July 2007. It was the first complete work of fiction based in the 3D virtual environment of Second Life, and the plot included real world connections. It is book one of a trilogy that will include ANIMUS: Of Animus and Men and PERSONA: Persona Publica.[1]
  • In Sam Bourne's 2007 thriller novel The Last Testament, Second Life plays an important part in the story and in cracking of codes.
  • "Notre Seconde Vie" is a book from the French writer Alain Monnier which translates to "Our Second Life". The novel poses the question "will the Internet replace reading paperbound books one day?".
  • The 2007 novel Another Life by Peter Anghelides, based upon the television series Torchwood, features a Second Life-inspired virtual world called Second Reality. Although the literary version is far more advanced than the real Second Life, several features of the real-life Second Life are referenced, including the ability to customize avatars, and at one point in the novel a character is banished to an area similar to Second Life's punishment area, "The Corn Field".
  • In The Darkest Evening of the Year by Dean Koontz, one of the antagonists is a private detective who lives vicariously through his Second Life avatar.
  • Halting State by Charles Stross makes a casual reference to Second Life, though it is apparent that many major plot elements have been drawn from this virtual world and other metaverse platforms. (See appearances, below)
  • A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks describes a virtual reality game parodying Second Life called "Parallax", which is played by one of the main characters, Jenni Fortune.

Television and movies[edit]

  • In an episode of the CBS comedy 2 Broke Girls on January 20, 2014 Han Lee (Matthew Moy) stated he was to busy in Second Life to help Caroline (Beth Behrs) when she was at home scared. Han stated that his Second Life online wife was having a baby.
  • On April 8, 2008 The Daily Show with Jon Stewart did a segment called Avatar Heroes.[2]
  • Law & Order: Special Victims Unit parodies Second Life in its episode "Avatar".
  • Second Life was featured prominently, and used as a tool to locate a suspect, in the CSI: NY episode "Down the Rabbit Hole", which aired on October 24, 2007. It was also featured in the episode "DOA For a Day" (aired 2 April 2008).
  • Dwight Schrute from the US television series The Office is an avid Second Life resident; this was featured prominently in the October 25, 2007 episode "Local Ad".[3] Dwight has an avatar named 'Dwight Shelford' and creates a virtual world within Second Life named Second Second Life. Jim Halpert is also seen in Second Life later in the episode, and he claims his character is "just to keep tabs on Dwight"; however, Pam Beesly comments on the detail in his character and notes it must have taken him quite some time to make it.
  • In an episode of the CBS drama Ghost Whisperer, Melinda Gordon experiences a similar online world, at one point pulling an avatar out of her computer at the shop as the user's ghost; she gets to know the local equivalent of Second Life while determining the avatar's true identity.
  • The CBC program the fifth estate, in an episode entitled "Strangers in Paradise," first aired January 28, 2009, documented two cases of families being damaged after a spouse became obsessed with Second Life. In each case a spouse formed such deep emotional and cyber-sexual relationships with another Second Life player that it resulted in their leaving their real family to join the person they had met and bonded with in Second Life.[4]
  • The episode Goin Bananas of The Suite Life on Deck features a parody called Better Life.
  • The episode "Social Networking" on Current's "SuperNews!" involved a Second Life character with one eye and a multi-pitched psychic-esque "echo" voice, alongside MySpace, Facebook and Friendster characters.
  • The feature film Beautiful Kate contains a scene where Rachel Griffiths' character demonstrates her avatar in Second Life to her brother, played by Ben Mendelsohn [5]
  • The feature film Gamer depicts an ultra-real parody of Second Life, called Society, in which players control real people, whose free-will has been forfeit in exchange for being well paid.
  • The film "Hot Tub Time Machine" has Clark Duke's character's avatar in prison, explaining that committing crime in Second Life has similar consequences as in real life.
  • The MTV series, True Life, featured a woman who spent much of her time using Second Life in the season 5 episode, "I Live Another Life in the Web".
  • The HBO film "When Strangers CLICK: Five Stories From The Internet", features a real life couple, now happily married, who actually met as Second Life residents.

Music[edit]

  • Duran Duran were among the first artists to join the metaverse, and they subsequently wrote their "Zoom In" song with hip-hop mogul Timbaland, clearly pointing about the Second Life experience.
  • Redzone were credited by Wired and Reuters as the first band to tour in Second Life in Feb. 2007, followed by Beyond the void as the first official rock band touring in second life (open PR, Mar. 2007).
  • The Italian singer Irene Grandi figured in her musical video "Bruci la città" some scenes of Second Life gaming.
  • In an episode of The Suite Life on Deck,Woody is seen to play second life and forms a relationship from doing so with another crew member.
  • In October 2013, singer-songwriter Liza Fox released a machinima music video "You Turn Me On"[6] filmed by Pia Klaar based on the song of the same title[7] in the 3D virtual world Second Life.
  • The first track on James Ferraro's album Far Side Virtual is titled "Linden Dollars".

Other[edit]

  • A Second Life girl, caLLie cLine, was chosen to represent Second Life Girls at #95 on the "Top 100 Hottest Females of 2007" in Maxim.
  • Second Life is also parodied in the webcomic Kevin and Kell, in the form of an MMORPG called 9th Life.
  • Second Life is parodied by the website Get a First Life by Darren Barefoot, extolling the virtues of meatspace/real life.[8] Material from the site includes false links to such topics as "Go Outside - Membership is Free" and "Fornicate Using Your Actual Genitals." Linden Lab proved that they had a sense of humor when Darren received, instead of a cease and desist, a Proceed and Permit letter.[9]
  • Kelly Services, an employment agency, features Second Life in its "break room" for temporary employees.
  • Soap opera actor Greg Rikaart played a Second Life fanatic on the web sitcom Imaginary Bitches.
  • Second Life CEO Mark Kingdon's email inbox was parodied by Prad Prathivi. Kingdon replied in response to the satirical mock up.

Public appearances in the grid[edit]

  • In 2006 former Governor of Virginia Mark Warner became the first politician to appear in a MMO when he gave a speech in Second Life.[10]
  • British comedian Jimmy Carr performed a virtual show on Second Life on February 3, 2007.
  • Jimmy Kimmel & Jay-Z were both made as Second Life characters and Jay-Z had a virtual concert on Second Life at the same time as his real life performance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!
  • First rock-band touring in Second Life was Beyond the void at beginning of 2007 - they organized virtual concerts in different locations in the virtual world.
  • On June 21, 2008, Charles Stross held a conference in Second Life itself to discuss, "[T]he Singularity in fiction, cutting-edge technologies, [Halting State], and his upcoming novel Saturn's Children"[11]
  • In August 2006 author Kurt Vonnegut interviewed by John Hockenberry, host of the radio show The Infinite Mind. The interview was aired live on the radio and in Second Life.
  • in 2007 Second Life harbor the first virtual car expo for the gigant ford Motors,created by Martin Bueno and the digital team of the JWT Agency in Argentina.
  • In October 2008,[12] Terry Pratchett visited Second Life to conduct a question-and-answer session about the launch of Nation.

References[edit]