Until fairly recently, a drone was either a male bee or the manner in which your relatives monotonously bored you to death. In the present day, however, the mere mention of the word has techies foaming at the mouth. The FAA anticipates that by 2020, drone sales could hit the 7 million mark. It’s very likely that you already know someone who owns a drone or has at least seen one hovering over your public park.
With this in mind, it should come as no shock that small, unmanned aircraft are slowly but surely making their way into our media. But does this represent the drone’s ascent into the mainstream?
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A Game Of Drones
A good way to assess a subject’s penetration into the mainstream and popular culture is to explore how it’s been represented within the gaming landscape. While some games have championed the use of drones within their storylines, there are now a plethora of highly rated drone simulators and titles based solely around the light aircraft. Almost everything that’s relevant within the pop culture sphere winds up being represented in an online slot game.
Emperor of the Sea is rich with East Asian heritage, Jungle Jim El Dorado is based around the South American rainforests and fans of spy-themed games are well catered for with Agent Jane Blonde. Tech fans will be happy to hear that drones are no different in this regard – Microgaming has created Drone Wars, which is tailor-made for Canadian players and borrows a little from the Star Wars franchise. With this in mind, one could argue that the growing number of online games centered around drones means that technology is slowly but surely entering the mainstream.
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Drones On Screen
There are numerous examples of drones being used throughout both the television and the film industry. ABC’s smash hit series “Modern Family” has an entire episode dedicated to Gloria being spied on by a DJI phantom set to “peeping-tom” mode.
For a more serious look at the subject, Anne Hathaway’s performance as a tortured drone pilot in Grounded was so well received that she’s already put pen to paper on the movie adaptation of the Broadway hit. Whether it’s farcical and side-splitting or downright awe-inspiring, our television screens have been inundated with drone-related themes and plots over the past few years.
You may think that the music arena is the last place you’d think of finding drone-related shenanigans. However, the growing influence of drones has meant that references to the aircraft are becoming more and more common.
From the dulcet tones of ANOHNI with “Drone Bomb Me” to Sitara Younis’ hit love song about a Pakistani drone attack, we can expect drones to feature much more in the music mainstream in the coming years.
Whether you’re a fan of our little flying friends, drones are here to stay, both recreationally and professionally. In terms of their impact in the pop culture mainstream, it’s fair to say that they’re receiving more attention than ever before.
The most pertinent questions surrounding drones appears to center around their longevity. Are they just another fad which will be replaced in the short term by the next new technological hot property? Or do they truly possess the sort of staying power which will make them a staple in both the mainstream and our lives? Watch this space to find out.
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