1. The Cylons Were Winging It
Syfy’s re-imagining of Battlestar: Galactica is considered a classic sci-fi series, possibly one of the genre’s best. But many of us who watched the show all the way through felt it went of course in its fourth and final season and that the series finale, well, sucked! And there was apparently a reason for that because the often-cited “plan” of the robotic Cylons who were trying to destroy humanity . . . did not exist! The opening credits for the show had the following narration:
The Cylons Were Created by Man. They Rebelled. They Evolved. They Look and Feel Human. Some are programmed to think they are Human. There are many copies. And they have a Plan.
According to recent comments from Ronald D. Moore, though, that “plan” was just something that executive producer David Eick thought sounded cool, and they really had not formulated a true plan for show’s big bads. Moore said that ““For the next 14 years of my life people have asked me ‘What was the plan?’” But in truth there was none, likely the reason that the show ended with a less than satisfying wrap up for its storylines.
Interestingly enough, in 2009 the direct-to-DVD movie Battlestar Galactica: The Plancame out which did a retcon of sorts to suggest that there had always been a plan in place that the Cylons were following.
2. Nathan Fillion Is Headed For Some Unfortunate Events
Fan favorite Nathan Fillion will be joining Neil Patrick Harris, Patrick Warburton and the rest of the cast of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events in the second season of that show. Fillion is best known to sci-fi fans as captain Malcolm Reynolds of the the Serenity from the acclaimed but short-lived Joss Whedon series Firefly. He also played one of the lead roles in Whedon’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. There is no word yet on which role he will play in the Netflix series.
A Series of Unfortunate Events debuted earlier this year and has been renewed through a third season which should allow it to cover all thirteen instalments from the original book series written by Daniel Handler.
3. ‘Black Mirror’ Inks A Book Deal
The anthology sci-fi TV show Black Mirror, which explores the dark side of our high-tech and media-dominated society, is headed to a book series. Creator Charlie Booker said ironically that “Black Mirror will soon be available in high-tech ‘paper’ format”. The books will present new stories, not adaptations of the television episodes, and they will continue to “tap into our collective unease about the modern world”. The first volume is due out on from Penguin Random House on February 20, 2018.
Black Mirror started in Britain in 2011 on Channel 4. It produced two acclaimed seasons with three episodes each before getting picked up by Netflix for a third. Season 3 had six episodes and a fourth year is on the way for the show.
4. Sci Fi TV Status Report: Blood Drive Revs Up For Syfy
On Wednesday, Syfy’s new Grindhouse series Blood Drive had its debut and pulled a 0.24 rating based on the overnights for the 18-49 demographic with 834K total viewers. Those are decent numbers for that network and this is yet another show that is posting better numbers than the science fiction entries on that channel. Dark Matter had its Season 3 premiere last Friday and only managed a 0.15 rating while the acclaimed but not highly-watched The Expanse only averaged a 0.17 score in its second season earlier this year. Other Syfy shows that have done better than the network’s science fiction entries lately include the modern fantasy The Magicians, the zombie-pocalypse romp Z-Nation, and the horror anthology Channel Zero. Syfy has indicated that they want to return to their science fiction roots, but has yet to find a show in that vein that has drawn significant viewership.
On Monday, Freeform’s Shadowhunters slipped to a 0.21 rating with 548K total viewers, but apparently that one sneaked in a renewal announcement last May that got lost amidst all the Upfront news. Stitchers slipped to a 0.10 rating with 363K total viewers for its second Season 3 episode, and that one needs its fans to get active on the social networks in support of the show.
Be sure to follow my weekly Sci-Fi TV Status Report column on Tuesdays here on Creators.co which tracks the ratings results and renewal/cancellation prospects of the currently airing sci fi and fantasy shows.
5. The Bat-Signal Shines In Honor Of Adam West
As I am sure most of us already know, Adam West passed away this last weekend at age 88. In honor of the actor’s accomplishments, the mayor and police chief of Los Angeles lit the bat-signal and shined it on city hall on Thursday night. West is best known for portraying Batman in the camp classic series that ran for three seasons on ABC from 1966 to 1968. He reprised the role several times over the years and made many cameo appearances as himself (often with co-star Burt Ward) before resurrecting his career in voice-over roles starting in the 1990’s.
6. The Mist Is Coming Next Week To Spike
A new trailer for Spike’s The Mist bowed last week and warned us to “Fear Human Nature”. That show has its debut next Thursday at 10 PM EST on that network. Also next week, AMC’s Preacher has its Season 2 premiere on Sunday and The CW’s The Originalshas its season finale on Friday. You can keep up with the weekly listings of sci fi and fantasy shows here.
7. News Bites: Jason O’Mara Joins ‘The Man In The High Castle’
Genre veteran Jason O’Mara (Life on Mars, Terra Nova, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) has been cast as a lead in the third season of Amazon’s adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle. He will be playing the Irish immigrant Wyatt Price, who was not a character in the original book.
The third season of Netflix’s Voltron: Legendary Defender has been given a premiere date of August 4th, earlier than the September return that was originally announced. A trailer for the new season leaked online this week but was immediately taken down. You can find it with some deep searching, though.
Chris Chibnall will be taking over the showrunner duties for Doctor Who starting with its eleventh season (and the yet-be-named new Doctor), and he has indicated that he may go for a season-long story arc instead of weekly stand-alone episodes once he takes the reins.