First off, let me say how utterly hilarious it is that the title of this post is the catch-line of the Sci-Fi Channel. It’s so…accurate. What could be more dangerous than watching Flash Gordon? Or maybe a special encore presentation of I was Eaten By A Fifty Foot Atomic Woman Spider 2 or whatever movie they’re kicking around that week. Dangerous, even if you’ve never been inclined toward hanging yourself in the past.
The awkward part of having conversations with my friends is the bit where we come around to discussing television. What I, and my wife watch on television are not the things we should be logically watching, based on the rest of our interests.
For example, I do not watch Dr. Who. I do not watch Battlestar Galactica. I have had no inclination, despite the insistence of my friends that I would love them.
My TV tastes wander to the opposite end of the spectrum from the rest of my tastes. My favorite shows are things like House and Shark and my favorite shows are Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe and Survivorman on the Discovery Channel.
Beyond that, I watch other things, mostly with my wife. (On my own, I watch very little television). We watch things like C.S.I and The Biggest Loser and Ghost Hunters and Medium. You get the idea where my tastes range.
In my reading, though, I come across the fascinating idea that we have a whole new collection of sci-fi shows coming out this year…and no one’s apparently interested in ’em. They are expected to suck harder than Flash Gordon. And that sucks pretty hard.
Nonetheless, the commercials started to catch my attention. So I watched some things. And here’s what I thought.
Heroes: Season 2
I was a huge fan of Heroes season one, as mentioned previously on this blog. It didn’t work for me for quite a while into the series…until I stopped trying to think about it like a TV series and started treating it like a comic book, with each episode being an issue. Then it works perfectly. The weird pacing problems that bothered me fell into place and I was absolutely riveted.
The ending was weak to season 1, but the story was great and I was a very happy man. I was delighted and overjoyed at each episode and giddy for the next one to come.
Heroes Season 2 starts off strong, following our characters from last season. I really like where they are right now, I like what we’re getting to see them do. Hiro is adorable, Nathan is really fascinating and the Clare’s dad (I can’t remember his name all of a sudden) is the star of this episode just in a couple of scenes. Absolutely wonderful. I can’t wait for the next episode.
“It’s Quantum Leap,” I said to my wife when we first saw the commercials. “It’s Quantum Leap, without Sam!”
“It looks interesting,” she thought.
So we recorded it. As I saw more and more commercials, I got more and more interested. So I was gently excited when I sat down to watch it.
Absolutely wonderful. I really like a TV episode where the ending has me grinning happily all the way through. The time travel was handled well, the reaction to it was handled logically, and I am looking forward to see where we go from here. I also like TV shows where it ends and the writer in me is busy figuring out where the storylines will go. How will his wife react? How will everyone else handle this? How is HE going to handle this? It’s less about time travel and it’s more of a character study, and I think that makes it stronger. It also isn’t goofy, but there is a mild humor in it.
And the main star has such a cool arched eyebrow. This was a very good show, and I’m really looking forward to where it goes. It ended and I went “Oh wow…that was cool!“
The previews sounded cool. So we watched the first episode. It wasn’t bad. I wasn’t blown away, but there’s definitely potential for the future episodes. The pilot episode was pretty self-contained (it was an origin story, all-told).
The special effects were just cool. This show, and Heroes, both really make me wish that Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman was being done now, because we’d get a great love story and some killer Superman effects, which we sadly lacked when the show was originally on.
I’m undecided about this one. I need to see where the story tries to go from here before I care, one way or the other. But it didn’t actively turn me off and the battle was really cool, toward the end, so I’ll come back.
So here I am. Someone who has not cared much about sci-fi since Babylon 5 went off the air (sci-fi on TV anyway). Someone who really abandoned it when Firefly went down. I’m interested, I’m enjoying it, I’m waiting to see what comes next.
NBC is suddenly holding the most dangerous night of sci-fi television, and I like that. They do a damn sight better job than the Sci-Fi Network does at anything.