The essential science fiction weapon of choice? Ray gun. Your space ship has deflector shields, phasers, disruptor rays and photon torpedoes, doesn't it? Well then, the six-shooter at your waist is a ray gun. Preferably with a tiny version of a dish at the front, just to make sure everyone *knows* what it does. This is the mid-century mindset at work for design, too, kind of like cars with fins. (Yes, yes they did have fins, sometimes rather large ones.) People smoked cigarettes without filters, drove cars with tail fins and wished they had ray guns, space ships and radios in their space helmets. Didn't everybody?