Everything Is Nice

Beating the nice nice nice thing to death (with fluffy pillows)

‘The Last Question’ by Isaac Asimov

with one comment

This is Asimov’s third and final story in the anthology and for a minute I thought it might be okay. It isn’t. It is another Multivac story and, after a hard day’s inputting, two of its attendants retire for a quiet drink. As they shoot the breeze we get the only decent line of the story:

Lupov cocked his head sideways. He had a trick of doing that when he wanted to be contrary, and he wanted to be contrary now, partly because he had had to carry the ice and glassware.

It is one of the few times you feel Asimov is writing an actual human being. What the two are discussing is entropy and whether there is any way of avoiding the heat death of the universe. Multivac doesn’t know. So then the story repeats itself but further into the future. And again. And again. Eventually humanity is dead and we are rewarded with a cheesy punchline.

Quality: **
Hardness: ***

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Written by Martin

4 December 2010 at 13:18

One Response

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  1. […] ‘Relativistic Effects’ by Gregory Benford ‘Making Light’ by James P. Hogan ‘The Last Question’ by Isaac Asimov ‘The Indefatigable Frog’ by Philip K. Dick ‘Chromatic’ by John M. Ford […]


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