The best of flawed scifi

I am not trying to be mean by making this list. I watched all of these shows. A faithful viewer. Only even while watching I knew they were going to fail. Wash up after a season or two. Fall into tv obscurity. After starting off so brightly in many cases. You get the drift.

My top four failed, misunderstood, and ultimately canceled scifi shows:

4. Continuum [x]

Wait, you say. This one just started. Yes, but it already is showing all the signs of crashing and burning. With a storyline that should be ripe for awesomeness only a few episodes in we are already having a “troubled teen mother” episode? Don’t get me started on the casting fail of a police partner. He is exhibiting season one Babylon 5 levels of bad acting.

Why should you watch it even if it will likely not get reviewed? The lead actress is Rachel Nichols from The Inside and the green girl from Star Trek and quite capable. The future flashes are also good too, though teasingly so as you know they are short bits and the real plot is contemporary. Maybe I’m just missing Caprica? Ok, guilty. Always guilty of that. -_-,

3. Outcasts [x]

With a cast like this how did it go so wrong? Once again it was a good idea. Decent pilot. And then almost immediately it jumped into desperation plot lines. Unruley teenager. No one seemed competent enough at their jobs to have reasonably been awarded them. Backloading the interesting bits in the season long after people gave up. Everything that happens requireing people to be stupid to progress the plot. I like human colony stories but this one tried to be every issue but that one.

Why should you watch it? Amy Manson’s character Fleur actually got a half decent storyline. They really should have focused on it more as she was central in a lot of the meandering threads of the show.

2. Earth 2 [x]

It was kind of like Dr. Quinn of scifi shows. Part that and part Lost in Space. Very mothery but with spunky single parents and causes. Oh, did this show have a message. I’ll cut it a lot of slack since it was from back in 1994 and I was but a wee thing watching it. It had the same problems as most did with people being stupid being the main way of moving the plot forward. It had no wheels to extend far beyond it’s basic concept. Kids are getting sick and perhaps this planet can help then live? Only the oddest combination of people end up on the planet and oh by the way, the natives are mysterious and if I recall correctly a bit trippy too. Why not throw some Native American-ish flare in there, right? Considering a kickass show like Space Above and Beyond happened just a year later maybe I shouldn’t cut it so much slack.

Why watch it? For me nostalgia. I watched it when it first aired so it is really hard for me to figure out what the experience would be for others. Maybe watch as part of your mid-90s scifi show education. Can’t be having any gaps in your resume.

1. Charlie Jade [x]

We’ve reached “actual good show” territory. While most shows are flawed in how dumb they get, this show’s flaw is assuming too much brainpower from potential viewers. It asked too much. It was like reading a book more than watching a show. I was sure willing to give and give with it and because of that enjoyed it emmensely, but getting people to watch to around the fifth episode where things become more self sustaining was near impossible.

Why watch it? South African scifi? Doing multiverse long before Fringe did (and perhaps getting ripped off by Fringe, but that is another tale.) Diversity? The hotness of Jeffery Pierce? 01Boxer? Seriously, why are either guys not leading men on prime time show? Bottom line it is an excellent show if you can stick with it past episode five. It might end up being one of my “test of friendship” shows. Like this show and we will probably work out. If that doesn’t get you this has one of the best bathroom fight scenes I have ever seen. Doesn’t hurt the theme sounded a bit like the soundtrack of Dune.


2011 Top Ten: Liaden Universe

I can’t remember who recommended this series to me. I think it was a series brought to my attention five or six years ago when I did a general plea and people pointed me to C.J. Cherryh, C.S. Friedman, and Bujold. Unlike those three I found the Liaden books hard to find which contributed to me not reading them until this year. I used to scour used bookstores for them. I bought a number of the books, but could never get them “in order” so they just piled up unread.

I finally picked one up, regardless of order, and went with it. It was Conflict of Honors which turned out to be as good of place as any to start. Great timing as the key relationship in this one reminded me of the one in the Peter Wimsey series I had just read. Where the romance is based on two strong characters finding each other while in a moment of unbalance (one in power and one not) and unwilling to move on the relationship because of fear of losing themselves in the process or taking too much. Only this one is in space and everything obviously. (handwaves) It is space opera spanning multi generations with a sentient tree and space turtles. Oh, and there are tons of books. Baen has them in kindle/ebook form which is how I read them in the end. You can buy them in bundles. I was going on a long train ride and needed to fill my Kindle. Easy sell. The authors even have a recommended reading order I completely disregarded.

The series is written by wife and husband duo Sharon Lee and Steve Miller. They’ve been writing in this ‘verse for years with no end in sight. I find Liaden ‘verse light and entertaining with some soapy drama in there too. So more like Bujold than C.J. Cherryh. There are some mob/spy stuff, some science/universe/origins stuff, sentient trees, teleporting cats, pilot stuff, commerce drama, race relations, music…it really depends on what book you pick up. I read everything this year and am now up to date with what is being written give or take a short story here or there. I regret nothing!

Bulletproof Kink

space suits - bulletproof kink

This might be where my bulletproof space suit kink started as a child. I watched this movie when I was waaay too young. I rewatched it the other night in anticipation for the new Noomi Rapace related film. I think Ripley can make room for another BAMF.