Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Last one on the nerd train

I like Firefly. I mean, I really, really like Firefly.

I went and saw Serenity last summer without having ever caught an episode of Firefly, and I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. I dug the "aw, screw it" mix of sci-fi and western genres. The cast was good, the dialogue sharp, the menaces the sort of thing you suspect are going to wipe out a good chunk of our band of heroes...

Anyhoo, during Christmas, Doug got us the Firefly boxed set. TV boxed sets intimidate the hell out of me. It's an awfully huge committment to say "I will now watch all of the programming contained in this box", especially when it's a gift. I've been busy with my Adventures of Superman, Batman the Animated Series, Superman the Animated Series, Wonder Woman and Clone High box sets, so I wasn't really looking to pick up any new shows. No matter how much I liked the movie.

Well, I'm sold on all this Firefly business. I think I have a particular fondness for Whedon's choice to remind us occasionally that these characters may be our protagonists, but they aren't necessarily heroes.

Also, Gina Torres.

She's lovely, but she will shoot you...

Next up, I am told that as Nerd Citizen #0045987xAZ, I am required to now watch the new version of Battlestar Galactica (including the pilot episodes). Too many noteworthy folks have stepped up to the plate to recommend this one to me. I cannot ignore the request much longer.

I'd avoided the series for a few reasons. Where the hell was the daggit? Why did Cylons have to look like sexy models? Where was Boomer? That's Boomer? You've gotta be kidding me...

But even in the ultra-conservative world of the sci-fi fan, more than 20 years and the addition of girls in tight pants will cause a rift in the mood and fans will begin to take notice. Ask any guy and they prefer the new Starbuck to Dirk Benedict.

I guess I have to watch to see if the 4 eyed disco singers are there, and if Imperious Commander is still chilling on his super-high bar stool. I'm told the new show is better. I guess you can't tell unless you watch, but I like my Cyclons sleek and shiny, looking like the love child between KITT and C3PO.

I have also heard rumors of a new Star Trek show about a "fresh out of The Academy Kirk".
Just after he won the Kobayashi Maru exercise, I would presume (boo-yah! How's that for dorky?).

I don't buy into all that many sci-fi based TV series, partially because there's a certain similarity between too many of them. Does this ring any bells?
-implausible characters causing implausible character interaction
-scenery chewing villains played by English actors
-bad, bad FX

I will be trying out the new Blade TV series on Spike TV. Aside from that, I dunno. NBC is pushing some new program for the Fall season called Heroes which sounds a LOT like The 4400, which I don't watch, but which they advertise during reruns of Monk. (Yes, I've started watching Monk re-runs, much to Jamie's chagrin. Yes, it's pretty much Murder, She Wrote.)

I guess I feel like I get what I need for my sci-fi from movies and comics, so I don't actively seek it out on TV. Steanso, on the other hand... Let's just hope he's not spending too many nights watching Tripping the Rift.

Lost probably qualifies as Sci-Fi, but I don't watch that anymore. I just get re-caps from magazines and my office mate.

I was never much of a Buffy or Angel guy. I petered out on Smallville when I simply quit caring about what happened to any of the characters. I hear the ratings are higher than ever. Go figure.

Stargate, Charmed and lots of other shows have always left me cold. I tried both and didn't make it past the fifteen minute mark of a single episode. There's usually some "true crime" programming on City Confidential or something on Discovery or History that will get me to stop further up the dial. On TV, reality is always stranger than fiction.

But, then, I've never been much of a series TV guy. I dislike feeling as if I have to keep up with any programming for fear I might miss something. I like to sort of like to wander into TV shows, which may be why I've turned to sports. I can always flip on a game and within a few minutes know exactly what's going on.

Firefly is nice. It's only one season of shows to worry about. There was no "jumping the shark" moment for the show, no point where I felt the characters were causing problems with themselves when the writers ran out of ideas and still needed dramatic tension on the program. The principles never left the show (cough... X-Files... cough).

Maybe there's a lesson there for producers as media formats converge and change. We know shows can make it on DVD, even enough to return to air (Family Guy). But maybe it's time English Language TV went the way of the Telenovella and only produced 13 episodes, making sequels only when the audience was there and the right story came along.

Anyway, it's a thought.

Oh, the new WB/ UPN network was decided NOT to pick up Aquaman in the Fall. I feel it's a blessing in a lot of ways.

No comments: