The 10 Best Fictional Laboratories, Ranked
The Batcave! Because the World's Greatest Detective needs a lab, for analyzing blood samples and also for metaphysical brooding. Science cred: Believable, in some ways. A supercomputer that can globally monitor the world's citizens? Check. But how much it counts as a lab is debatable--Batman uses the lab for a lot more than science. The giant dinosaur housed there is not for experiments, sadly. Greenway Productions/20th Century Fox Television
9. Dexter’s Laboratory
Right there, in the name:
This animated show is about a lab. We couldn’t leave it off our list. Science cred: However. its science cred is pretty dubious, even if Jurassic Pooch, in which the eponymous Dexter creates a dinosaur, introduced children world-wide to the ethical concerns of cloning.
8. The Dharma Initiative
The Dharma Initiative was the mysterious, science-based utopia in the television program
Lost. They did quite a few experiments that you can read about. You can also watch six seasons of TV and be very upset about it later. Science cred: Sure, there’s some stuff that sounds reasonable. Plus: they do cross-discipline work, in fields like psychology, zoology, and, uh, time-travel-ology.
7. The Portal Lab
The greatest lab in video games is the lab from
Portal. In fact, the game takes place entirely in a lab: you’re a “test subject” who moves through rooms, attempting to find the source of a computerized voice taunting you. Science cred: You use a sort of teleportation device to navigate the lab, which, uh, probably not (yet!).
6. Jurassic Park Cloning Place
Oh, man. Remember when the baby dinosaurs started hatching? And there was actually a pretty thought-out video explanation on how the dinosaurs were possible? It all seemed so real. Poignant, even.
Science cred: We more or less put the kibosh on this one, sadly. But it’s almost there! Kinda.
5. The TARDIS
The TARDIS is the homebase of Doctor Who, the alien scientist-engineer from the TV show of the same name. It can zip through time and space.
Science cred: Ha, no. But it inspired a satellite, so that’s something.
4. The Iron Man Lab
The Iron Man/Tony Stark lab-garage-man-cave thing. The touchscreen interfaces, the robot suits, etc.
Science cred: Sure! Soon to be more real, possibly.
3. The Breaking Bad RV
The RV was where the characters of
Breaking Bad first honed their meth-cooking skills. They’ve since (SMALL SPOILER) moved on to nicer digs, but they just don’t feel as homey. Science cred: Probably the best on this list. The crew hired an actual chemist to make sure their drug-making was believable.
2. The Holodeck
In the Star Trek universe, the Holodeck is a virtual reality room where crews can revisit crime scenes and conduct experiments. (And have adventures!) It’s
anything, so it’s definitely worth mentioning. Science cred: Doesn’t quite exist, but seems like we’re getting closer every day. Plus, nary a day goes by where a technology story doesn’t mention it.
1. Frankenstein’s Lab
Of course. What else could it be? The lightning, the crank, the monster. Perfect.
Science cred: Don’t even get started. This list is controversial. We get it. Want to nominate your own? Add it in the comments.