August 20, 2007

Humanoid

It always annoys me when "humanoid" is used to mean "human". It doesn't; it means roughly "human shaped".

Humans are humanoid; in Star Trek Vulcans, Klingons, Bajorans, Cardassians, etc. are humanoid; in Stargate the Asgard, the Nox, the pre-ascended Ancients, the Wraith, etc. are humanoid; the Doctor is humanoid; in fact probably 99% of all aliens in sci-fi are humanoid, because the make-up is easy.

The one that really irritated me was the later episodes of Star Trek Enterprise with the Xindi. The reptilian fifth of the planet habitually distinguished themselves from humans and the primate fifth by calling them both "humanoid", when all the Xindi (except the aquatics) were humanoid.

It's not a particularly important point, but who said it had to be...


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