- The Days of Perky Pat
The Days of Perky Pat is a
science fictionshort story by Philip K. Dick, first published in 1963in Amazing magazine. Elements of the story would be incorporated into Dick's 1965 novel, " The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch".
In this story, suvivors of a global thermonuclear war living in isolated enclaves in California spend their leisure time playing with the eponymous doll in an escapist role-playing game that recalls life before the apocalypse — a way of life that is being quickly forgotten. At the story's climax, a couple from one isolated outpost of humanity play a game against dwellers of another outpost (who play the game with a doll similar to Perky Pat dubbed "Connie Companion") in deadly earnest. The survivors' shared enthusiasm for the Perky Pat doll and her expensive accessories is a sort of mass delusion that prevents meaningful re-building of the shattered society.
Perky Pat in Popular Culture
David Cronenberg's 1999 film EXistenZ, which involves a virtual realitygame that blurs reality and fantasy, visually refers to the Dick short story when its two stars, Jude Lawand Jennifer Jason Leigh, consume fast food from containers marked "Perky Pat's."
In the movie Screamers Peter Weller's character refers to someone sarcastically as a real "Perky Pat".
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