sf/f TV development news - 2013

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Temis the Vorta, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. RJDonner&Blitzen

    RJDonner&Blitzen Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Of course I know all that. I've been watching Trek since 1969. :rommie:

    It doesn't matter whether people like any particular incarnation of Trek, it is all a connected body of work. The first two movies sequelize specific characters from the series, McCoy appears in the first episode of TNG and Kirk is referenced in the second or third, Picard and O'Brien cross over to DS9, various characters cross over to VOY and the Defiant crosses over to ENT, just to make the more obvious examples. It's all one big body of work.

    Questions of quality aside, and despite the alleged presence of "our" Spock, nuTrek is a complete reboot with most of the characters' personalities re-imagined (Chekov isn't even the same age), the Federation re-imagined as crippled and post-Apocalyptic (and apparently millions of missing Vulcans, although I'm sure that's just the stupidity of the writers), and the format changed from the Human adventure to a sequence of explosions.

    So, no, it's a completely different concept that simply recycles the names and terminology of the original, but none of the continuity or substance.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    You're not hearing me over your own preconceptions. The point is, it's not about whether they liked a show, it's about how they defined it. Lots of people back then would have passionately denied that it was all a connected body of work. For decades, people have been claiming that the animated series wasn't "real" Trek, that the movies weren't "real" Trek, that TNG wasn't "real" Trek, that ENT wasn't "real" Trek. They've all been treated as apocryphal works or alternate realities. But over time, those objections fade away -- especially when the next new interpretation comes along and the purists turn their ire against it instead. They probably even start counting the Trek they formerly rejected as part of the whole they're now defending.

    Heck, I see from your profile that you've been on this board since 2003. So I'm surprised you don't remember all the arguments about whether Enterprise was a "real" prequel or an alternate timeline. They weren't that long ago.


    You really can't see the blatant double standard you're employing here?

    It's also missing the point, because I'm not talking about internal continuity. It's all made up anyway, and claims of continuity are just part of the fiction. I'm talking about the reality that the different creators of those fictional incarnations of Star Trek interpret it differently, bring different approaches and attitudes to it, and so even though they pretend it all fits together, the various Trek series and films have significant differences from one another in content, tone, and intention. So the metatextual reality, from a critical perspective, is that they are separate works; the pretense of forming a common whole is merely part of the internal fiction, a conceit that the different installments of the franchise traditionally follow. (For instance, TWOK pretending to be a direct followup on "Space Seed" while freely contradicting many of its specifics such as the age and ethnicity of Khan's followers. Different works can simultaneously claim continuity with one another and violate it as it suits them.)
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2012
  3. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Abrams' movies haven't caused Star Trek to "contract" as a story. Someone could come along and do a TV series and completely ignore his parallel universe. All the potential that was there, is still there.

    Abrams simply shaped Star Trek to the medium - the big budget summer popcorn flick that must have global appeal. That means zap-pow-bang and not a lot of time left over for such quaint elements as character development and dialogue. He did as much of the latter as he dared, while still ensuring that the movie would be a solid success, in the top ten for 2009.

    And that helped Star Trek in exactly the way it needed - in the business realm. After Abrams' success, the franchise was no longer some old fuddy duddy crap nobody cares about anymore. Instead, it became a shining success, something to take seriously, and that's the one essential thing needed to get it back on TV. Not the only thing, but without Abrams, getting it back on TV would be far less likely.

    Hollywood doesn't care about a good story, it cares about a sure thing. Star Trek has always had the potential to be a good story, and always will. But it hasn't always been a sure thing or even close.
    I wouldn't make that assumption at all, and I'm sure Les Moonves wouldn't. For starters, if space opera is so wildly popular, why has it vanished from TV? That alone makes it hard for Star Trek to get back on the air. Maybe after another space opera series or two has returned and been a solid success, that hesitation might change. The TV business is not very daring, and CBS is less daring than most.

    And it all depends heavily on which cable channel you're talking about. If it's TNT, then the Falling Skies approach - mainstream, broadcasty approach, set on Earth with relatable, modern-day characters - is probably the best you're going to do with the ratings.

    On premium cable, the approach would have to be very different, much more adult and "gritty" in a way that would infuriate a lot of fans. And even if HBO or Showtime decided to do a space opera, is Star Trek the first thing they'd think of? Or would they take a page from Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead, and adapt a well-regarded title from novels or graphic novels, that would have more snob appeal than a franchise associated with bland broadcast?

    And remember, premium cable wants us all to think that everything on broadcast is bland and contemptable. That's premium cable's message to consumers - pay us for what you get elsewhere for free, because the free stuff is lowbrow crap. If they undermine that message, then they're undermining their whole reason for existence.
    To make a good story, sure. To make a good story that has a snowball's chance in Sto'vo'kor of being greenlit much less surviving for long on TV, you need a lot more.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2012
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    I think the characterizations were the movie's strongest point. Abrams is good at keeping the focus on character even during the zap-pow-bang.


    Yes. If anything, the new movie was closer to the spirit of TOS than the sequels have mostly been. TNG and the rest built this reputation for ST as the conservative, old-guard sci-fi franchise, the "fuddy duddy" stuff as you say -- but TOS was extremely modern and cutting-edge for its day, taking the storytelling and visual language of the serious, adult TV dramas of the era and applying it to science fiction. Abrams made ST modern again in a way it hasn't been for decades, and you're right that that's what it needs to be relevant again.
     
  5. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    It's not even so much as Abrams making Star Trek relevant to the audience or fans. It was that he made it relevant to the moguls who don't know or care anything about Star Trek other than whether its something that seems likely to make them boatloads of money.

    If all Abrams accomplished was a PR campaign for the franchise, that's nothing to scoff at. He did accomplish more, and that's gravy. If he had done that PR campaign at the expense of creating a good story, that wouldn't have done too much harm, since someone else can pick up the reins and do something completely different anyway.

    So even those who think he failed to create a good story should recognize that he still helped the franchise a lot more than he harmed it.
     
  6. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    More sf/f development news: Bruce Boxleitner's steampunk pitch, Lantern City.

     
  7. Caliburn24

    Caliburn24 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Bruce hasn't even pitched the idea yet? How can a show have an "innovative production design" when no one has decided to back the show?
     
  8. DWF

    DWF Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    That's just a method used to sell a series, Gene Roddenberry did the same thing for Star Trek by using his parallel earth concept.
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    A number of shows and films include concept design art in their initial pitches. It was Ralph McQuarrie's concept paintings, done at George Lucas's request, that helped convince 20th Century Fox to fund the production of Star Wars.
     
  10. Caliburn24

    Caliburn24 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    After visiting the official website for Lantern City it appears the "innovative" part of the art design is letting fans submit ideas and artwork that may get worked into the show. That process seems extremely vague at the moment however.

    It seems like a fun concept, but in our litigious society that idea seems likely to be jettisoned before a studio will even seriously consider picking up the show.

    Oh, and the setting for the show...
     
  11. RJDonner&Blitzen

    RJDonner&Blitzen Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    I don't know about the cartoon, but the rest are connected whether people like it or not.

    I just said that I've been there for all of it.

    And that's exactly what I'm hoping for.

    Even the much-maligned Enterprise got millions of viewers, which is enough to make Sciffy happy.

    :cardie: :rommie:

    The harm is that Trek is now looked upon as a mindless action franchise, rather than the adult Space Opera it used to be. The chances of getting a new TV series may be higher, but the chances of getting a new TV series aimed at adults is lower. More movies are inevitable, but they will all be the same Asylum-level nonsense as the first.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    And plenty of people would tell you that the Abrams films are also connected whether you like it or not. Other people over the years have rejected earlier incarnations of Trek as absolutely and unwaveringly as you reject the Abramsverse, and just as you dismiss their opinions as wrong, others will dismiss your opinion as wrong. It goes both ways.

    You're also missing the point, because I'm not talking about anything as petty as personal likes and dislikes. I'm talking about the distinction between the textual pretense of continuity and the metatextual reality of the distinctions between different creators' interpretations of Star Trek. You're insisting on trying to evaluate things on only one level, that of internal continuity (plus the level of personal like and dislike which is really beside the point here), and I'm trying to point out that that's only one layer of analysis, and is often more a conceit than a reality.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  13. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Sure SyFy would love to get ENT ratings but CBS wouldn't let them play in that sandbox.

    How the franchise is viewed by the TV or movie audience isn't an issue. Most people aren't even thinking about it. If a grown up oriented TV show was made, the movies wouldn't impact it's chances much. What would, is whether the previews made it look appealing to the audience where it was going to air.

    People don't obsess about TV show and movies. They just watch what's in front of their face and then forget it. A week after they saw the last Star Trek movie, most people had forgotten about it, because that's normal. What we're going here is abnormal. :rommie:
     
  14. RJDonner&Blitzen

    RJDonner&Blitzen Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    ^^ Ah, that's why they kept seeing it. They forgot how bad it was. Now I understand. :D

    I'm not talking about likes and dislikes either; First Contact and the Voyager finale were almost as bad as nuTrek. But the point remains that nuTrek is a reboot. That was the whole point. To start it over and dumb it down. People may wish that some of the other shows were out of continuity, but they're not. nuTrek is. It was designed to be.
     
  15. Caliburn24

    Caliburn24 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Post-apocalyptic shows seems to be all the rage these days, and TNT has decided to take another one to pilot.

    http://www.deadline.com/2012/07/mic...enlighted-william-brinkley-novel/#more-301779

    Between TWD, Falling Skies, the upcoming Revolution, and a couple other shows in development I am starting to get a little tired of of the sub-genre, but the navel premise should give it a different flavor than those other shows. Although it seems like it will share certain elements with Last Resort.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Do you bashers really not understand how obnoxious and mean-spirited it is to say things like that? You're not just insulting the movie, you're insulting the taste, judgment, and intelligence of those of us who did like the movie. Is it so impossible for you to admit that your opinion is just an opinion, not a universal truth, and that people of equal intelligence and judgment can simply disagree about the quality of a particular work? I respect your right not to like the film, but you seem to have no respect for anyone's right to enjoy it or find it worthwhile. Star Trek is supposed to be about respecting different points of view, not ridiculing them.


    That was your point, but it's too narrowly focused to recognize my point, which is that continuity is not the only level of analysis of a fictional work. Any pretense of continuity or discontinuity is just part of the fiction. It's imaginary, not real. Hell, two works that are blatantly in incompatible realities can pretend to share continuity, like having Mulder and Scully appear in The Simpsons. Continuity is not the all-encompassing truth you're treating it as, it's just one more element of the illusion. It's a tool used by storytellers.

    What I'm talking about is the differences in interpretation among the storytellers themselves. Even with the pretense of continuity, different Trek series and films represent different points of view, different interpretations of what that continuity is, how it fits together, what belongs to it and what doesn't (e.g. whether the animated series or certain movies should count), what the ground rules of the universe are (e.g. whether it's based in plausible science or wild technobabble), etc. Ultimately it's all filtered through the interpretations of different creative minds, even when they are pretending it all forms a coherent whole.

    It's analogous to how different artists draw a comic-book character. It may be meant to be the same person, but that person's appearance can differ wildly. John Romita, Jr.'s Peter Parker looks nothing like Humberto Ramos's wildly cartoony Peter Parker, even though they were working on parallel comics in the same continuity at the same time. Different artistic interpretations produced different results. Or when different actors play the same character, like James Bond or Zefram Cochrane, they bring different interpretations to the role. In-universe it's alleged to be the same uniform entity, but the real-world truth is that different creators bring their own differing interpretations to what they create. Whether they pretend those differing creations fit together or that they're incompatible realities is just part of the conceits of the fiction. Either way, they're still distinct creations on a more fundamental level.
     
  17. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Is The Last Ship going to debut in the fall? If it appears later, Last Resort might be cancelled by then. It's got a terrible times lot with too much competition for the male demographic. TNT is a better place for that concept, since they don't demand as high ratings and they could sell the show to the Falling Skies audience. ABC has no compatible series to use to bootstrap a new guy show, since they program heavily for women.
     
  18. Jeff O'Connor

    Jeff O'Connor Commodore Commodore

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Man, that's a decent enough twist on the genre, but I've never seen anything by Michael Bay I've enjoyed. Still, he's only producing it, so...
     
  19. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    Or maybe some of us thought it was a really good movie.
    I know a lot of people hate Voyager, but First Contact? Really? For me FC is only behind the Abrams movie and Wrath of Kahn in my Trek movie rankings.
     
  20. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

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    Re: sf/f TV development news - 2012

    RJD, love ya, but, ya should dial it back a bit, you're almost saying those of us who accept and like NuTrek are ignorant plebes who can't even remember we didn't like the Numovie and osmosis makes us watch it again, thinking we'll "enjoy it this time too"