Carlos Hernandez. The International Studbook of the Giant Panda. (Interzone #245, Mar-Apr 2013)

interzone245A young female journalist gets the opportunity to get a panda’s-eye view of the world. Or, rather, due to their supra-olfactory senses, a panda’s-nose view of the world. And indeed, the other end of the panda, as she is intimately connected to a robotic panda in the reservation of the American Panda Mission.

The APM are trying to use remote-controlled panda robots to demonstrate to the real ones they are attempting to breed just how to go about it properly, and the story gives you as much detail as you will ever need (perhaps more) on the breeding habits of pandas.

The work of the APM is challenged by protestors, who feel that what is happening is tantamount to bestiality (I’m sure some states and probably the NRA would fight the right to do this, and in Uta the right to do it severally) and this causes the journalist’s experience of taking a robotic panda out for a ride to be somewhat different to that planned, as she is the one taken for a ride….

Probably not, but is Hernandez trying to get a subtle message across : the USA using remote technology to fuck non-native species….?

Hernandes handles the taking on of a panda persona by the journalist well, and for my money I’d have rather seen this explored in a more sfnal way (and thus vastly improving on ‘Avatar’).

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