Monthly Archive for June, 2008

Once More With Big Screen

Despite the supposedly on-going issues which caused Fox to block theatrical licensing of all of its television properties, it seems that this year’s Comic-Con will feature (or, they say, conclude with) “Once More with Feeling” on the big screen — in Ballroom 20, no less.

For those unfamiliar, that would be the beloved musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It used to be screened in theaters seemingly on an almost regular basis until licensing for such showings (and, as stated above, all Fox television properties) was suspended for reasons still not fully disclosed by the relevant parties.

On a personal note: I always have had very mixed feelings (no pun intended) about these events. Mainly because while I get the idea of just kicking back and having fun with it, it’s really not that sort of musical. The songs are not divorced from the meaning, and the meaning of the episode in the context of the season in which it appeared is rather profound, and not all hugs and puppies.

You can’t pull many (if any) of these songs out of context and treat them as “all in good fun”.

But most of what I’ve seen of these events seems to do just that, up to and including some behavior towards the material I can only describe as mobbish and, frankly, thuggish.

I’ve seen audiences at these events be (I’m sorry, but there’s no other word for it) ugly.

So, buyer beware, although your mileage could vary. But there’s every possibility that I myself will be skipping this one.

Fringe Pilot At Comic-Con

For everyone at Comic-Con who hasn’t seen it already, or just wants to see it again, perhaps in a more finalized form (meaning, for example, without music from Lost in it), TVWeek reports that there will be “two on-site screenings of the ‘Fringe’ pilot, as well as two off-site screenings at the UA Horton Plaza Theater”.

Reversals

The BBC has released the preview of this coming weekend’s finale. It contains absolutely no hints as to the solution to the great controversy raging since the first part of the finale. But now it’s time to get into my preferred theory on that count, after the jump.
Continue reading ‘Reversals’

Lost In The Dollhouse

As noted in an update to my last item on the Comic-Con schedule, Watch with Kristin had put the Lost panel on for 12:00 to 1:00 PM on Saturday afternoon — making it all but certain that it will not be in the same room as the Dollhouse panel currently set for 1:00 to 2:00 PM.

If true, this now becomes all the more problematic as details have leaked (or, possibly leaked, if the source is credible) as to just how the Octagon Global Recruiting thing is going to play out at the convention. If what’s reported by DarkUFO is correct, part of the OGR plan includes something happening at the Lost panel itself.

That means that some of us who had been looking forward to experiencing the OGR material at Comic-Con will be missing out if we opt to be in whatever room features the Dollhouse panel.

Find The Pattern

Strange little radio ads — including one for Abrams Auto — soon will begin airing (or have they already?) exhorting listeners to “find the Pattern”. The viral promotion for Fringe has begun.

Update: After posting the above, I went off to re-watch the pilot. It’s plays more strongly the second time through, for some reason. It might be one of those premiers that Fox needs to air in an encore presentation before the first regular episode, not only to give people who missed it the chance to see it, but to give people who did see it the chance to see it a second time.

That said, something else was stronger the second time as well: The degree to which those integrated title overs are profoundly annoying.

Update: Question for the class: Is it really “viral promotion” if right off the bat it has articles about it in the Hollywood Reporter that spell it all out for people? Answer: No, not really.

It’s Too Late

It certainly is beginning to seem more and more as if Russell T. Davies is going to draw his entire four years as showrunner on Doctor Who into the cauldron of this season’s finale. And it almost seems as if he’s threatening to undo it all and leave Steven Moffat to figure out if there’s anything left when he takes over the show.

Of course, this is all when we’re only halfway through the two-part finale (if you’re on the British schedule, that is). Plenty of time to for him to find a conclusion that doesn’t leave the entire thing in ruins.

The entire planet, and more than two dozen others, stolen from time and space. The bees, of course, have gone missing (the dolphins having already been spirited away by Douglas Adams). Donna is “something new”. Death coming to the “most faithful” companion? Our first look at the Shadow Proclamation. The suggestion that the infamous Time War somehow is “time locked” and therefore inaccessible (perhaps deftly explaining why it doesn’t seem to be raging on all around us the entire time, pardon the pun). Davros, creepier than ever.

All, or most, of that after an opening titles sequence with Donna, Martha, Sarah Jane, Jack, and Rose all listed together for the very first time.

Oh. And that ending.

Or, being a two-parter, that middling. Despite the name of this site, I don’t read ahead on most things. But I do know that the BBC has been saying for quite some time now that David Tennant would be around for the specials next year which bridge this season and the next one.

Could that have been a smokescreen? Was it all just a lie to protect this story? Or does Davies have one last — and inevitably maniacal — trick up his sleeve?

Not long now (and yet so very long now) until we find out. Unless you’re on the American schedule, in which case: Good luck keeping yourselves unspoiled after next week.

Update: Of course, minutes after posting this I read something by someone who themselves also does not know what’s coming next, or what Davies is going to do with this middling. But they had a very astute observation that I do believe will be the key to Tennant remaining.

I won’t blurt out the observation here, but I will say this: During that final scene, look around. Especially on the wide shots. Davies appears to have given us the option of noticing how he’s going to do this.

Emmy Series Finalists Announced

At some point today, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced the finalists for drama and comedy series. (And here’s a bit from the AP.) Each finalist list consists of ten shows, which then will be whittled down to five each. Those nominees will be announced on July 17. For my part, I would just like to see Lost and The Wire (although I still haven’t finished season five) each pass through from finalist to nominee.

Saturday Schedule Speculation

Now that we have a prospective time for the Dollhouse panel at Comic-Con (thanks for the link love, Watch with Kristin), it behooves us all to try to piece together what shows are grouped together by room.

Typically speaking (although there are exceptions), panels are one-hour long with a fifteen-minute gap between them. So, if the “noonish” reported for the Lost panel actually is 12:00 PM, then figuring this out becomes tricky. However, if “noonish” turns out to mean 11:45 AM, we could end up with a partial Saturday schedule that looks something like this.

Begin Speculation

  • 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
  • 12:45 PM to 1:45 PM: The Office
  • 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM: TBA
  • 3:15 PM to 4:15 PM: Pushing Daisies
  • 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM: either Fringe or Eureka (see below)
  • 11:45 AM to 12:45 PM: Lost
  • 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM: Dollhouse
  • 2:15 PM to 3:15 PM: Battlestar Galactica
  • 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM: Chuck
  • 4:45 PM to 5:45 PM: either Fringe or Eureka (see below)

End Speculation

You can see the open questions here. For one thing, the Heroes panels is slated for 10:45 AM to 11:45 AM, and that doesn’t fit either of these possible schedules, given the premise of a one-hour panel and a fifteen-minute gap. There’s something fishy as well about this potential split leaving an empty space from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM without any apparent show to drop into such a slot. In addition, I suspect that either Fringe or Eureka will turn out to be not at 4:45 PM but at 4:30 PM and therefore go in that first grouping.

Obviously, some of this speculation isn’t based merely upon the typical one-hour/fifteen-minute pattern but on something approximating an ideal schedule for, well, me.

If the Saturday schedule turns out to put Lost, Dollhouse, Battlestar Galactica, Chuck, and (say) Fringe all in the same room together — well, my bladder might not be particularly happy with me when it’s all over with, but it would certainly justify my expense in going to Comic-Con at all.

Update: Watch with Kristin now has slotted the Lost panel into 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM, rather than the earlier “noonish”. This would mean it can’t be in the same room as the Dollhouse panel, since that reportedly starts at 1:00 PM.

Top Ten Revelations

Having just watched “Revelations” for the third time (is it possible it actually gets better with each viewing?), I thought I’d expand a bit on what little I said after it aired, by posting my top ten favorite moments from the episode. It should go without saying that if you still haven’t seen it, you should not be reading any further. The list is provided in chronological, not ranked, order.
Continue reading ‘Top Ten Revelations’

Michael Emerson As Benjamin Linus

He still deserves some recognition for his work on Lost from somewhere outside the genre fold at some point, but Michael Emerson — whose performance as Benjamin Linus is, I think, one of the great network television performances in a very long time — took the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor on Television on Tuesday.

In the meantime, however, you should be sure to vote for him in this year’s SyFy Portal Genre Awards.

One thing that always has bothered me about television awards is that they seem to focus on a particular episode rather than on the premise that television performance is an on-going affair. It’s within that more proper context that actors like Emerson (and, arguably, Michael Hogan on BSG as well) are deserving of more attention than they receive.

For what it’s worth, my other performance picks over on the SyFy Portal vote are Olmos, McDonnell, Sackhoff (although I very nearly went with Helfer), and Forbes. It wasn’t intentional, focusing so much on Galactica. But when I looked at each set of nominees, they turned out to be my first instinct.