Let's kick it off easy. You've seen "Star Wars," right? Remember the Imperial TIE Fighter? Darth Vader flew one, and it's exactly the sort of spacecraft an 8-year-old boy would marry if he could. What does "TIE" stand for?
From the classic Imperial TIE Fighter to special models such as Darth Vader's TIE Advanced x1, the acronym stands for twin ion engine.
The B-movie lovefest known as "Mystery Science Theater 3000" featured a man forced to watch horrible films aboard a spaceship called the Satellite of Love. The vessel's first prisoner eventually made use of a hidden escape pod. Where did he find it?
The escape pod, dubbed Deus Ex Machina, turns up hidden inside a box of hamdingers, a brand of deviled ham patties.
Author Douglas Adams describes the starship Heart of Gold as "mindbogglingly beautiful" in "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." He also compares the ship to a common real-world item. What is it?
Don't let the round thing in the 2005 film fool you. Adams described the Heart of Gold as resembling a sleek running shoe. You know, like <a href="http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/hg2tg-heart-of-gold.gif">this</a>.
You might remember "Lexx" as the other sexy late-'90s TV series about a living spacecraft. The German/Canadian co-production featured a half-lizard love slave, an undead assassin and a man-eating plant woman. Oh yeah, and the spacecraft Lexx is a giant organic dragonfly thing. What's the name of the ship's planet-destroying weapon?
Lexx's planetary destruction weapon is known as "the ocular parabola." If the ship's eyes start to glow as bright as the sun, run far away.
The spaceship Bebop ferries its crew around the solar system in the anime series "Cowboy Bebop." What was the ship originally designed to transport?
The Bebop is actually a fishing vessel, designed to catch and transport fish from the seas of Ganymede.
The time lords of the "Doctor Who" universe used the TARDIS as their primary means of transportation through time and space. Each vessel actually resembles a boring old box, but the TARDIS chameleon circuit allows it to take on alternate forms. What does the Doctor's TARDIS usually appear as?
The Doctor's TARDIS takes the form of a London police box. The TARDIS of his arch nemesis, the Master, has taken on various disguises, including a grandfather clock, an iron maiden and a statue of Queen Victoria.
The 2009 sci-fi horror film "Pandorum" featured a giant seed ship populated by slumbering crew members, marauding mutants and a few brain-damaged survivors. What was the name of the spacecraft?
All the dark and bloody action in "Pandorum" takes place aboard a vast sleeper ship called Elysium. In the course of the film, we learn of a previous ship called the Eden. Pandorum itself is a fictional psychological condition, described as a kind of cosmic cabin fever.
The crew of the USCSS Nostromo met with a particularly grisly fate -- you may remember it from a film titled "Alien." Lt. Ellen Ripley escapes aboard one of the mining vessel's shuttles. What was it called?
The Nostromo boasted two shuttles, but only the Narcissus was functional at the time of Ripley's escape. The Sulaco enters the picture in the sequel "Aliens" and the Auriga appears in "Alien: Resurrection."
The warship Nimbus, the flagship of the Democratic Order of Planets fleet in "Futurama" boasts an impressive armament. What is its ultimate weapon?
As revealed in the Futurama film "The Beast with a Billion Backs," the Universe-To-Universe Missile (UMM) enables the Nimbus to destroy an entire universe in a single shot.
The evil alien Brood in the Marvel Universe love to convert peaceful space whales into mindless organic spaceships. What are these space whales called?
The space whales are known as the Acanti. They live in the vacuum of space, where they evolved to travel at faster-than-light speeds.
The television series "Firefly" and the film "Serenity" both follow a crew of misfits on their Old West-inspired space adventures. Which title is also the name of the crew's spacecraft?
While the ship in "Firefly" resembles an insect, the ship itself is called Serenity.
The classic Hammer sci-fi movie "Quatermass and the Pit" (released as "Five Million Years to Earth" in the United States) involves the discovery of an ancient Martian spacecraft in 1960s London. Where exactly?
London Underground workers discover the wreckage while drilling a tunnel extension for the city's subway system. While the aliens appear dead, their memories are very much alive in the spacecraft.
The graphic novel "Hellboy: Conqueror Worm" depicts a darkly paranormal vision of outer space. Unspeakable monstrosities lurk in the void and wait for the chance to seep into the body of deceased life forms. One dark entity returns to Earth inside a Nazi space capsule, but what sort of corpse does it inhabit?
While the worm itself morphs to titanic size and inhuman appearance upon landing, it originally possesses the body of a dead Nazi astronaut.
I haven't forgotten about you, Trekkies. The series "Deep Space Nine" took place on a space station rather than on a starship, but that didn't stop the show from acquiring its own prototype warship in its third season. What was the name of this vessel?
Designed to combat the Borg and open up the show's plot, the USS Defiant even boasts a Romulan cloaking device.
The 1999 comedy "Galaxy Quest" is probably best remembered for its humorous send-up of "Star Trek" fandom and Sigourney Weaver's push-up bra. But it also featured the starship NSEA Protector. What did its Omega 13 function actually do?
The Omega 13 function sends the user 13 seconds into the past, giving them a "do-over" on any particularly catastrophic decisions.
You find yourself aboard a spacecraft arguing philosophy with an artificially intelligent thermostellar bomb. Chances are, you're hanging out on this spacecraft.
While the Discovery One in "2001: A Space Odyssey" plays host to an iconic test of wills between a human and a computer, Thermostellar Bomb #20 argues philosophy in John Carpenter's film "Dark Star" (also the name of the spaceship).
Not every fictional spacecraft is fit for a journey to the sun, but we encounter just such a vessel in Danny Boyle's 2007 film "Sunshine." What is it called?
"Sunshine" follows the crew of the Icarus II on a dangerous mission to reignite Earth's dying sun.
Alien spaceships manage to fly their way into even the unlikeliest of films. Which of the following Coen brothers films features an unexpected UFO sighting?
Even a neo-noir blackmail film set in 1949 can feature a spacecraft, as small-town barber Ed Crane discovers in the 2001 flick "The Man Who Wasn't There."
But what of spaceships and religion? Which 1970s sci-fi horror film features a UFO abduction and a half-alien cult leader?
The plot of Larry Cohen's film "God Told Me To" initially concerns a series of bizarre mass murders in New York City, but the ensuing homicide investigation eventually reveals a dark history of alien abduction.
For the final question, let's bring it back around to the mainstream. According to Han Solo, how long does it take the Millennium Falcon to make the Kessel Run?
Solo insists the Kessel Run takes less than 12 parsecs. A parsec, incidentally, is equal to about 3.26 light-years.