Dune is the savior of science fiction

The worst case scenario for Dune is that it becomes a franchise

Damien Walter
1 min readMar 11, 2024

Worst case scenario for DUNE

It becomes a franchise

Endless low quality streaming shows and movies cranked out of the CGI mills. A series of video games that are the same video games they make for every franchise but with the Desert Planet skins. You know the score.

Some will say “Dune is already a franchise”.

And that really demonstrates how baked into our culture that kind of corporate speak is. It’s just the default to talk about Content, Franchise, IP, box office returns.

Which is Orwellian dystopia in action. If you don’t have a word for an idea, you can’t even think it. And many of us don’t even have words for what Dune could be other than a franchise.

A franchise is a very specific business model that the Hollywood bureaucrats worked hard to impose on the art of cinema. And as Martin Scorsese said, it’s killing that art.

So in this episode of the Science Fiction podcast I go looking for a new way to think about our great stories like Dune.



Damien Walter

I tell stories about the future, technology and culture. Published by The Guardian, WIRED, BBC etc.