Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Evolution of Torchwood

I liked Torchwood, it was edgy, original, well written, and funny. What more could you ask for in a sci fi T.V. show? You may have noticed my use of the word liked (as in past tense) it wasn’t a typo.

Ah, the old gang

To answer my own question of what more could you ask, my answer is FIX IT. Put it back the way it was back in season one, before Captain Jack went into heat and saving the planet from the extraterrestrial du jour became the secondary story. Good grief even Captain James T. Kirk had more self control than Captain Hardness, I mean Captain Harkness. In it’s first season Torchwood was BBC America’s highest rated series EVER, but last year BBC America announced that only a single-five episode story arc will be presented instead of the usual 13.

Why, maybe because parents were freaking out when they discovered that their kids were not watching a G rated sci fi show. When Mom tuned in to see Captain Jack getting it on with Captain John Hart (aka Spike) the secret was out, Torchwood was no Doctor Who, in fact even the Doctor seems to keep old Jack at arms length. Have you seen the way he looks at Jack sometimes?

Where's everyone else?

I like Jack, the old Jack and I still like Torchwood, the old Torchwood, but who’s idea was it to start killing off the main characters? You know the ones that we spent two seasons getting to know then wham. From my vantage point this is an easy fix. Go back to the basics from season one also bring back Martha for a few more episodes.

My daughter's favorite doctor and companions
I feel like this was the old bait and switch, first give us the show that everyone wants then give us the show that you the writers and producers want. Well the fans aren’t buying it so it seems to me that if the producers want the show to stay on the air they will have no choice but to hide Captain Jacks Viagra and keep him focused on saving the planet…. again.

(written pre-Children of Earth special but after season 2)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Star Trek – The Next Series

Star Trek – The Next Series
Part #1

As sure as the swallows return to Capistrano each year you can count on the fact that somewhere down the road there will be another incarnation of the popular Star Trek TV series.

If the new Star Trek motion picture that hit the screens May 8th hits box office gold you can expect a new series sooner rather than later. In a break with past installments of Star Trek movies the actors who played in the last series Enterprise will not be staring in the new movie. I have my own theory as to why the suits at Paramount decided to take a more radical path by going with a younger less familiar group of space explorers rather than stick with the familiar faces from the last series. I can sum it up in one word, Zindi.

The cast of Enterprise was a comprised of seasoned actors and a few new comers who did the best with what they had, as a matter of fact I believe that in many cases the actors who played Captain Archer and Dr. Phlox should be commended for taking next to nothing scripts and turning them it into great episodes. But all Zindi all the time was not going to hold the interest of any true fan of sci fi. Imagine what would have happened to the ratings of Star Trek Voyager or Star Trek TNG if the Borg had shown up as many times as the Zindi in one season. Not convinced, okay how about Stargate. Stargate SG1 ran for 10 seasons, while Stargate Atlantis (with a similar format as Enterprise with) all Wraith all the time only lasted for five seasons.

Star Trek works when it is set in the distant future so the answer for a successful new series is to go further into the future not backward. Combining a space station like Deep Space nine with a ship like Voyager would be the way to go in my option. In this case the space station would be an extension of Star Fleet, an outpost. By combining a space station with a star ship the writers would be free to create fresh new storylines. I believe that the Defiant (the warship in Deep Space 9) was an after thought.

Adding a similar type ship to be hidden inside the star ship like a shuttle would also add to the possibilities of new stories. Last but certainly not least would be time travel. I know that it has been done in the last series and in at least one of the motion pictures but having a ship with the ability to travel through time under certain circumstances would not only be awesome it would allow them to interact with crewmembers past like Dax and Worf in Deep Space Nines episode Trials and Tribble-ations.

Years ago (before the slue of lawsuits) studios like Paramount would accept scripts from freelance writers. It’s a shame that those days have passed because sci fi TV could use some new ideas or in this case improve on the old ones.