Post-Apocalyptic Toronto

Since moving to Toronto in 2015, I've been interested to see its depection in novels and film, and especially in science fiction and fantasy, and even more particularly post-apocalyptic depictions. Here are the works I've experienced and collected so far:

  • The artist Matthew Borrett creates digital works depicting Toronto in the future after devestation and neglect, but also ingenuity of the people still living there.

  • The book Toronto 2033, by various authors, features stories of Toronto's possible futures, with artwork by Borrett.

  • Biidaaban: First Light (which Devindra Hardawar calls "indigenous futurism") is a VR experience of Borrett's work.

  • Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel is initially set in apocalyptic Toronto (a mysterious virus spreads rapidly causing a global pandemic, and civilization collapses), but it moves on to another setting (in the nearby Great Lakes region) from there.

  • There is a Toronto chapter of the Post-Apocalyptic Book Club on Meetup (though the books chosen are set in other locales).

  • Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson, adapted to film as a prequel called Brown Girl Begins, is set in downtown Toronto after an economic collapse, the capital class having moved all of its assets and power centres to the suburbs. I've seen the film but not yet read the novel.

  • The 1998 film Last Night is set and filmed in Toronto, the premise being that the world is about to end that day, something that was known well in advance but about which nothing can be done. The film depicts Toronto as a (mostly) ghost town with a few stragglers trying to make the best of their final evening on Earth.

  • From a bibliography ofToronto in Science Fiction and Fantasy: "Bugtown," Northern Suns (Tor, 1999), ed. by David Hartwell and Glenn Grant. Near-future, post-apocalyptic SF set in a rundown Chinatown. "Bugtown" was first published in Transversions and is a sequel to "Version City," from Derryl Murphy's anthology Senary (1992). Says the author, "The ideas in both stories date from a time when I believed the end of the world might be fun, and whichever of the many possible forms it might take would almost certainly come in my lifetime. This might still be the case" (p. 214, Northern Suns' introduction to "Bugtown").

  • Digital art by Matt Coglianese:

If I'm missing anything from this list, please contact me.