The Time Machine by H.G. Wells offers readers an adventurous and fast sample of Cli-fi literature. The book starts off kind of slow but soon after catches your attention and continues to keep you guessing right along with the time traveler. Wells uses the two very different groups that humanity has evolved into (the Eloi and the Morlocks) as a social critique and warning for the future. Although the time travel story is fun the underlining messages that Wells is presenting just seems to scream at you the whole time.
During the time traveler’s stay in the year 802, 701, he finds himself in the presence of a species that has evolved from present day humans called the Eloi. The Eloi are beautiful child-like “creatures” that have a very little attention span. They live in small communities and although they do not seem intelligent at all, they do have a very basic language that the time traveler tries to learn. The time traveler is amazed at this tiny new race of humans that he believes to have created such a simple and peaceful society that no longer required strength or intelligence. “Under the new conditions of perfect comfort and security that restless energy, that with us is strength, would become weakness. “ (31) It becomes evident that Wells is most likely poking fun at the upper class for being lazy and ignorantly comfortable. I am not sure why the time traveler found a romantic interest in Weena, other than pure loneliness.
The time traveler discovers the Morlocks, the second group, while in search for his missing time machine. They are white ape like creatures that live deep under the ground and only come out under the darkness of night. He finds that all of the machinery and industry that helps run the communities are underground with the Morlocks. After days of only eating fruit with the Eloi, the time traveler’s mouth begins to water when he realizes they have meat, yet he sees no livestock. He comes to the realization that the Morlocks do not take care of the Eloi because they are a bound to serve a higher class, but they take care of them for food such as a farmer caring for their livestock or crops.
Being a new reader of the Sci-fi genre, I was interested to see how I took to The Time Machine. It started off slowly and than I was hooked. Wells wrote a book that is great for warming people up to a genre that might have previously been a turn off for them.