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Old December 1 2012, 08:42 PM   #31
Greg Cox
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Harvey wrote: View Post
Outside of the two episodes written by Darin Morgan, Millennium was pretty bleak. Of course, it was mostly a crime series, but there were some fantasy elements.
But Millennium went off the air thirteen years ago, so it's probably not all that representative of "modern sci-fi."
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Old December 1 2012, 08:48 PM   #32
M'rk, son of Mogh
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Most things Walter says in "Fringe" make me die of laughter.

There's comedy in modern sci-fi.
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Old December 1 2012, 08:55 PM   #33
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

(RE: Greg Cox)

I think it fits the OP's request for post-1980 television programs, but you're right, it's a little old to be considered "contemporary."
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Old December 1 2012, 10:05 PM   #34
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

FUTURAMA: Attempting humor since 1999 (R)
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Old December 1 2012, 10:10 PM   #35
Greg Cox
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Harvey wrote: View Post
(RE: Greg Cox)

I think it fits the OP's request for post-1980 television programs, but you're right, it's a little old to be considered "contemporary."
Heck, at this point even BSG dates back to the previous century!
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Old December 1 2012, 11:56 PM   #36
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
Okay, I have to ask: can anyone cite an example of this pervasive new trend in humorless sf besides BSG and its spinoffs? Or are we extrapolating an entire trend from one high-profile example?
Part of it is a perception problem -- that it FEELS like there's less humor. And again, we're not saying everything has to be like Eureka or some of Stargate-SG1's funniest.

But like i said, opportunities, where it should fit in seem to have been lost. Stargate Universe & Enterprise seemed to have less humor than their predecessors.

Touch (on the edge of the genre) is still a good show (IMHO), but more serious than others (i felt like Heroes & even 24 had more humor scattered throughout than Touch).

I haven't followed some of the other genre shows (like Once Upon a Time, Grimm, the vampire shows), so someone can let me know what they think of those...
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Old December 2 2012, 01:52 AM   #37
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

I remember the original thinking behind having humour so prominent in SG-1 was because much of sci-fi was so humourless and took itself too seriously. And then Stargate eventually goes down this path anyway with SGU.

Ironically, though it's often called the darkest Trek series, DS9 probably had some of the funniest jokes in the entire Trek franchise.
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Old December 2 2012, 03:13 AM   #38
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

RandyS wrote: View Post
Not to mention "stopping at casino planets". Which is a complaint I will never understand.
I only barely remember that episode of the original BSG, but mostly it was just really, really cheesy and stupid. It's an excellent example though of camp, which is the sort of humour largely eschewed by modern genre TV.

The remake tried to really go through the wringer of looking at how genocide of the human race would affect the handful of survivors, while the original show's characters were frankly a little too chipper about the whole thing. One could argue that the new series went too far in the other direction, but hey, balance, where does one find it.

RandyS wrote: View Post
I haven't followed some of the other genre shows (like Once Upon a Time, Grimm, the vampire shows), so someone can let me know what they think of those...
Branching out to other genre shows eh? In that case:

Game of Thrones has humour, otherwise known as the vast majority of Peter Dinklage's dialogue (and no wonder he's a fan favourite and also the guy who brought home an Emmy).

American Horror Story is unintentionally hilarious all the time, and it has some intentional jokes too. Although it's always hard to tell how much of that show is in on its own joke - it's certainly a good modern example of camp, if a dark, twisted and hyperbolic sort.

Walking Dead... humour is sporadic at best. It's considerably less funny than that other post-apocalpytic TV series with a Bear McCreary score, largely because the writing feels so much more pedestrian (or undercooked) and it lacks anything quite as amusing as Baltar. There are definitely some actual jokes in there somewhere, but besides Daryl treating a feral creature as dinner none come to mind.
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Old December 2 2012, 06:25 AM   #39
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Kegg wrote: View Post
RandyS wrote: View Post
Not to mention "stopping at casino planets". Which is a complaint I will never understand.
I only barely remember that episode of the original BSG, but mostly it was just really, really cheesy and stupid. It's an excellent example though of camp, which is the sort of humour largely eschewed by modern genre TV.

The remake tried to really go through the wringer of looking at how genocide of the human race would affect the handful of survivors, while the original show's characters were frankly a little too chipper about the whole thing. One could argue that the new series went too far in the other direction, but hey, balance, where does one find it.

RandyS wrote: View Post
I haven't followed some of the other genre shows (like Once Upon a Time, Grimm, the vampire shows), so someone can let me know what they think of those...
Branching out to other genre shows eh? In that case:

Game of Thrones has humour, otherwise known as the vast majority of Peter Dinklage's dialogue (and no wonder he's a fan favourite and also the guy who brought home an Emmy).

American Horror Story is unintentionally hilarious all the time, and it has some intentional jokes too. Although it's always hard to tell how much of that show is in on its own joke - it's certainly a good modern example of camp, if a dark, twisted and hyperbolic sort.

Walking Dead... humour is sporadic at best. It's considerably less funny than that other post-apocalpytic TV series with a Bear McCreary score, largely because the writing feels so much more pedestrian (or undercooked) and it lacks anything quite as amusing as Baltar. There are definitely some actual jokes in there somewhere, but besides Daryl treating a feral creature as dinner none come to mind.
The BSG quote is mine, but the one about Grimm is not. Although for the record, I haven't seen those shows listed in that quote either.

As to your comments on the original BSG, why do you guys cling to the false claim that that series was campy? It was not. Just because you don't like it, doesn't make it so. It just means that you don't like it.
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Old December 2 2012, 03:39 PM   #40
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

There's humor in a lot of sci-fi shows. There's just that fine line between comic relief and camp that keeps a show from being dismissed as 'silly'.
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Old December 2 2012, 04:37 PM   #41
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

RandyS wrote: View Post
As to your comments on the original BSG, why do you guys cling to the false claim that that series was campy? It was not. Just because you don't like it, doesn't make it so. It just means that you don't like it.
I think that works both ways though. Just because you don't find it to be campy, doesn't mean that others don't. It just means that you don't find it campy.
Like just about anything else, it's camp factor is entirely subjective depending on how the viewer sees the show.


Getting back to humor, I thought SGU was often funny, more so once the actors and characters had settled into their roles aboard the ship and relationships had started to set in. It was different from the way that SG-1 and Atlantis had used humor though and was never right on point. It was a bit more subtle and dry and to that effect trying to be funny in the same way as its predecessors wouldn't have worked due to the story and tone they were tying to achieve.
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Old December 2 2012, 05:23 PM   #42
Kegg
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

RandyS wrote: View Post
As to your comments on the original BSG, why do you guys cling to the false claim that that series was campy? It was not. Just because you don't like it, doesn't make it so. It just means that you don't like it.
Because it's not false. There was more to the original BSG than camp, but it did also do episodes that were basically camp. And the Ovoid casino planet one was a pretty campy episode.
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Old December 2 2012, 06:07 PM   #43
Gaith
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
Okay, I have to ask: can anyone cite an example of this pervasive new trend in humorless sf besides BSG and its spinoffs? Or are we extrapolating an entire trend from one high-profile example?
Not agreeing with the OP, but since you asked...

The Bourne Legacy

Inception

Terminator Salvation
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Old December 2 2012, 06:15 PM   #44
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

There is a very funny scene in Inception where JGL kisses Ellen Page. Technically not humorless!
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Old December 3 2012, 02:04 AM   #45
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Re: Why is humor lacking in so much modern sci-fi?

Kegg wrote: View Post
RandyS wrote: View Post
As to your comments on the original BSG, why do you guys cling to the false claim that that series was campy? It was not. Just because you don't like it, doesn't make it so. It just means that you don't like it.
Because it's not false. There was more to the original BSG than camp, but it did also do episodes that were basically camp. And the Ovoid casino planet one was a pretty campy episode.
That was a part of the three hour series premiere and I didn't think it was campy nor do I think the series was campy. The campy sci-fi series at the time was Quark and that didn't last for very long.
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