Tag Archives: Battlestar Galactica

Caprican Sub Culture


Thanks to The Thumbcast‘s Iain Hepburn for drawing my attention to this blog post by SFX columnist Jayne Nelson.

I’ve only seen the pilot episode so far, but I really like what I’ve seen of the Battlestar Galactica spin-off Caprica.

However, like Jayne, I am a sub-editor and appalled by this blatant error in the masthead of what is presumably one of Caprica’s leading newspapers – it seems that when it comes to the printed word, the Colonials cut corners in more ways than one:

Unless, of course this isn’t a glaring error by the props department but a subtle foreshadowing of the falling standards that lead to the breakdown of Caprican society, the creation and rise of the Cylons and, ultimately, the nuclear annihilation of the Twelve Colonies and the massacre of 50billion people.

See what can happen when you sack too many journalists? We have been warned…

Advertisements

3 Comments

Filed under Current and recent TV shows, Stuff

Video Killed The Radio Star: Muse – Knights Of Cydonia


A real treat for you this week – the greatest music video ever made.

Yes, that’s a bold claim, I’ll grant you, but, I think you’ll find, completely justified.

I’ve already featured a great live version of Muse‘s Knights Of Cydonia in Top Of The Pops Thursday.

I love the song – as I’ve said before, I like to think of it as a cross between Ennio Morricone and Iron Maiden.

And the video for Knights Of Cydonia is a TV and movie geek’s dream. It’s presented in the form of a trailer for a sci-fi spaghetti western (I wish someone would make the full-length film) and comes with dozens of references and homages to genre TV shows and films, including Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers In The 25th Century (the heroine dresses like Wilma Deering!), Star Wars, Planet of the Apes, Blade Runner and many more.

If you’ve seen it, you’ll know how good it is – if you haven’t, I won’t spoil it for you. Enjoy!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

29 Comments

Filed under Current and recent TV shows, Video Killed The Radio Star

Blake’s 7 Teleports Back Onto BBC1


The Beeb’s classic sci-fi series Blake’s 7 is heading back to BBC1, possibly as early as this Winter.

The revival of the fondly-remembered drama had been a closely guarded BBC secret but the news leaked out early this morning.

Blake’s 7, which ran for four seasons – 52 episodes – between 1978 and 1981, was created by Terry Nation.

Set in a dystopian future in which Earth is ruled by a oppressive, dictatorial Federation that keeps the population in a drug-induced subservient state, the show told the story of a group of criminals who, under the leadership of idealistic rebel Roj Blake (played by Gareth Thomas), become a team of intergalactic freedom fighters battling to liberate humanity from their oppressors.

Nation also created Doctor Who’s deadliest foes the Daleks and the 1970s post-apocalyptic drama Survivors, which was itself given a 21st-century makeover last year on BBC1 (a second series will air later this year).

That show’s success, and the massive popularity of the revived Doctor Who, is said to have convinced Beeb bosses that a Blake’s 7 revival could be another ratings-winner.

With satellite channel Sky One’s new version of Blake’s 7, announced almost a year go, in limbo, the BBC were able to reach a licensing agreement with the current rights holders and move ahead with their own updated version.

Producer Paolo Rilf said: “Doctor Who showed the BBC that not only is there an audience with a renewed appetite for TV sci-fi but also that some of their classic shows still have a lot of life left in them. Survivors provided further proof of that and Blake’s 7 was the obvious choice for the next revival.

“The production team are also big fans of the new Battlestar Galactica, which was a revolutionary update of a TV show that took the relatively shallow, superficial  original series and transformed it into a show with amazing depth and social relevance to our own present-day world. What they achieved with their show has been a big influence on our development of and plans for the new Blake’s 7.

“On some level, Blake and his crew were terrorists, albeit fighting for a just cause against an evil regime. Their struggle gives us a a mirror in which we can reflect and examine our own struggles in a post 9/11 world where the war on terror is an all-too-real part of our lives.”

He added: “Our plan is for a two or three-part miniseries to reintroduce the show to viewers and, depending on how that performs, a full series could follow. We hope to start casting in the next few weeks and film during the summer, with broadcast sometime before Christmas.”

Stars believed to have been approached about roles in the show include Stephen Fry, comedian Peter Serafinowicz, Peep Show’s Robert Webb and Red Dwarf actor Robert Llewellyn.

Rilf was cagey about revealing any plot details “as the initial scripts are being polished as we speak” but, in news that will delight long-time fans, he said: “We hope to have more than one of the stars of the original series reprise their roles and play a major part in the new version.”

It seems likely that Paul Darrow, who played amoral cynic Kerr Avon (right) in the original version of the show, will return as he was most fans’ favourite character and has been heavily involved with a number of aborted revival attempts over the years.

Other possibilities include Michael Keating as cowardly thief Vila Restal, another fan-favourite, and Jacqueline Pearce as the ruthless villain Servalan (below).

It also means that the revival will be some sort of sequel to the original rather than a remake or reboot that ignores the previous show’s continuity. That means the writers’ first challenge will be to resolve the ending of the original show, which was one of the most shocking TV cliffhangers ever seen.

First, Blake returned after two years’ missing from the show, only to be shot and killed in a tragic misunderstanding by a paranoid and increasingly unstable Avon, who had been leading the crew in Blake’s absence. Then Vila and all of Avon’s other crewmates were apparently gunned down by Federation guards.

Only Avon himself was left standing at the end, surrounded by armed guards, and as he raised his gun, the screen faded to black, several shots were then heard being fired and the credits rolled for the last time.

Blake’s 7 is the Choob’s all-time favourite show and I’ve long dreamed of the day when it would return but, of course, with filming not even started yet, it would be extremely foolish to get too excited about a revival just yet, given how often we’ve been disappointed by similar announcements over the years.

But if this does pan out, then this day could prove to be one of the best in the history of TV. Mark it in your diary and keep your fingers crossed!

EDIT: Okay, so since this page is still picking up quite a few hits, I feel obliged to remind all readers who stumble upon it to remember that it was written a while ago (look and see the date at the top if you don’t believe me) and bear in mind that timing is everything. That is all.

11 Comments

Filed under Classic TV, TV News

Tuesday Is Theme Tunes Day – Battlestar Galactica (v1.0)


I know I’ve rambled on more than enough this week about Battlestar Galactica and Caprica.

But since tonight is the night UK viewers get to see the final episode of the reimagined show, I thought that it was only fitting that this week’s classic theme tune took us back to when it all started – the original Battlestar Galactica, 1978-style.

Although the new version of the show was superior in almost every way, one thing the original did have was the best theme tune.

So much so that, although they makers of the new show did not use it, they did pay homage to it on at least two occasions.

The first was in the mini-series that launched the new show, when a brass band could be heard playing the original theme during a fly-past at the decommissioning ceremony for the Galactica.

And, appropriately enough as the circle was completed (“It has happened before and it will happen again”), if you listen carefully towards the end of the final episode, you’ll hear the second use of the original show’s theme tune.

Here it is in all its original glory, complete with Patrick McNee‘s opening monologue:

Leave a comment

Filed under Classic TV, Tuesday Is Theme Tunes Day, TV Themes

Battlestar Galactica Is Dead – Long Live Caprica


With Battlestar Galactica having reached the end of its journey on Friday (TV movie The Plan notwithstanding) the Caprica publicity machine is really shifting into high gear.

Back in January, the Choob featured an early trailer for and a scene from the pilot episode of the drama.

Now the trailers and previews are coming thick and fast, ahead of the release of an extended version of the pilot episode on DVD on April 21 in the US (a UK release is yet to be confirmed). Based on the pilot, the Sci Fi Channel in the US (which is in the process of rebranding itself as Syfy) has ordered a full 20 episode season, which will begin airing early next year.

Caprica is set 50 years before the events of Battlestar Galactica. It’s billed as more of a family drama and will primarily tell the story of the creation of the technology that spawns the Cylons. It is viewed through the eyes of two families thrown together through a shared tragedy, resulting from a terrorist atrocity, that sets in motion a chain of events that will lead ultimately to the creation of the Cylons and the destruction of Caprica and the rest of the 12 Colonies.

Wealthy industrialist Daniel Graystone (Eric Stoltz) is one of the two main characters. The other is civil liberties lawyer Joseph Adama (played by former NYPD Blue and Jericho star Esai Morales), the father of future Battlestar Galactica commander William Adama.

Here is the latest trailer for the pilot episode:

[clearspring_widget title=”Two Daughters” wid=”48e10f5e9dbb50aa” pid=”49c6aec098f95b72″ width=”400″ height=”400″ domain=”wgtclsp.scifi.com”]

This next video is a little featurette that includes some new clips plus brief interview snippets from creators/executive producers Ronald D Moore and David Eick and stars Morales and Paula Malcomson, who you might recognise from her role as Trixie in Deadwood and who plays Greystone’s wife Amanda in Caprica.

[clearspring_widget title=”SCI FI Wire Video – Caprica” wid=”48e10f5e9dbb50aa” pid=”49c6b2af41c02992″ width=”400″ height=”400″ domain=”wgtclsp.scifi.com”]

And finally, here’s another scene from the pilot:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

 

 

3 Comments

Filed under Current and recent TV shows, TV News

When Worlds Collide: Battlestar Galactica Lands At The United Nations – And Some Finale Thoughts


[Don’t worry, there are no spoilers for the final episode of Battlestar Galactica in this post.]

The last-ever episode of Battlestar Galactica was broadcast in the US on Friday night. I couldn’t let this sad occasion – the end of what what has been one of the best-written, most intelligent and thought-provoking television dramas ever made –  pass unobserved. I’ll talk in more detail about it after the finale airs in the UK on Tuesday.

For now, I’ll only note that the last episode left me feeling very conflicted. In terms of wrapping up the characters’ individual stories, on the whole, I thought it did a reasonable job in giving us some sort of closure.

In terms of a convincing end to this amazing five-year journey, and satisfying answers to some of the questions raised by the show’s mythology – I’m not so sure.

Don’t get me wrong, as series finales go, it was one of the better ones. I’m just not sure that the destination quite lived up to the journey. But like I said, more about that later, after everyone in the UK has had a chance to see it for themselves.

For now, to commemorate the final episode, I really wanted to post Adama’s speech from the mini-series that kicked off the new Battlestar Galactica story, the “So say we all!” speech. But I couldn’t find it anywhere online – I think the Sci-Fi channel lawyers have been busy keeping clips of the show off the internet (incidentally, while copyright protection is obviously important for TV broadcasters, such a draconian approach is counter-productive, in my opinion, a subject I will expand upon at a later date). You can find a short clip of the scene in question here on the channel’s own website but, unfortunately, I can’t embed it here.

I wanted to post it not only because it is a great scene but because its impact crossed over into the real world a few days ago.

You may be aware that last week, series stars Edward James Olmos (right), who played Admiral William Adama, and Mary McDonnell, the show’s feisty President Laura Roslin, and creators/executive producers Ronald D. Moore and David Eick were guests of honour at a special event hosted by the Economic and Social Council Chamber of the United Nations in New York.

It was a special two-hour retrospective of Battlestar Galactica, during which many of the contemporary social and political issues raised by the show were discussed. You can see a BBC news report of the event here.

Science fiction is often at its best when it is used as a prism through which the authors observe and comment on the human condition – and Battlestar Galactica took that to new heights, certainly in terms of TV sci-fi. It took a long, hard and at times painful look at what it means to be human, tackling such subjects as terrorism, torture, the relationship between politics and religion, the use of military might to enforce political will, human rights and much, much more.

Many of these subjects were explored during the UN session, the full two-hour video of which can be found here (it’s in RealPlayer format).

However, the session really came to life with the following speech by Admiral Ada-, I mean Edward James Olmos, when he reprised his “So say we all” Galactica speech to make an impassioned plea for an end to racial divisions. And, predictably, the equally passionate audience responded just as you might expect.

Say what you like about Battlestar Galactica– and the arguable populist and superficial opportunism the UN has been accused of for hosting this event just days before the final episode of the show aired – there are few TV shows through the years that have transcended their entertainment roots to earn such real-world relevance and legitimacy. Narrow the field to sci-fi TV shows and, I think, you are looking at a club with a single member.

Of course, although Battlestar Galactica is finished as a weekly show, the story isn’t quite over just yet. Later this year, we have one final hurrah in the shape of The Plan, a TV movie – directed by Olmos – that wraps up the story of the Cylons’ original plan that was mentioned in the opening credits of the early seasons of the show but then was mysteriously dropped.

And Caprica (above), a prequel set 50 years before Battlestar Galactica and dealing primarily with the creation of the Cylons, is due to begin early next year, with the pilot episode out on DVD next month. It promises to continue the trend of examining our own society through the Galactica universe, with Caprica depicted as a society very similar to our own, with technology, consumerism, greed and decadence running out of control.

The show sounds intruguing and I’m really looking forward to it – but will the Galactica audience be so attracted to a planet-bound show with no space battles or killer robots? Time will tell.

2 Comments

Filed under Current and recent TV shows

TV Newsround: CSI Galactica; Dollhouse Gathers Speed; Chenowith Full Of Glee; and more


FANS of Battlestar Galactica who are already mourning the fact that there are only two more episodes left can take some comfort from the latest development in the CSI universe – CSI: Galactica.

No, it’s not an attempt to transplant the CSI formula to the 12 Colonies of Kobol.

It’s a special episode of CSI, due to air on April 16, in which the forensics experts investigate a death at a science fiction convention.

Kate Vernon, who plays Ellen Tigh (right) on BSG, and Ronald D Moore, who created the new version of the sci-fi drama, will guest star on the episode and the producers promise plenty of other sci-fi references and in-jokes.

Talking of all things CSI, producers of CSI: New York have warned fans to brace themselves for the death of a prominent character in the season finale.

FOUR episodes in and the ongoing plot of Joss Whedon‘s new show, the flawed but intriguing Dollhouse, is slowly gathering speed as clues about the show’s mythology are gradually revealed.

For the uninitiated, it stars Eliza Dushku (right) as Echo, one of a group of “actives” or “dolls”, men and women who have had their personality erased so that they can be programmed with specific skills and memories, tailored to the needs of clients who hire them out for anything from sexual liaisons to bank robberies.

According to Entertainment Weekly’s Michael Ausiello, the show will kick into high gear on April 3 when, through a series of flashbacks, we learn who Echo was and why and how she ended up being lured into the Dollhouse. So it may be worth sticking with the show for a few more weeks, even if you’re not too sure about its long-term appeal.

OVER in Smallville, Ausiello reports that two major characters will die in the final episode of the current season. One of them is said to be a “veteran” of the show, the other a more recent addition. And, unlike previous Smallville deaths, these ones are said to be permanent. He also reports that The Legion will return in the May finale and that the final two episodes of the season will focus on a search for Chloe and Doomsday.

LOVABLE Pushing Daisies star Kristin Chenowith (right) and former Alias father figure Victor Garber have signed up for recurring roles in the Fox network’s musical comedy-drama Glee. Garber will play the father of the show’s leading man Matthew Morrisonbut Chenowith’s role is shrouded in secrecy.

The show is already generating great word of mouth amongst those who have seen an extended trailer and the pilot, so much so that the network plans to air the pilot episode on May 19, following American Idol’s current season finale. The series proper won’t begin until the Autumn.

Morrison plays a high school teacher who sets out to turn around the fortunes of his school’s glee club, which is filled with misfits and outcasts, molding them into a top-notch choir that can compete in a national competition. The show will feature musical numbers each week, ranging from classics to current pop hits.

ACTOR Jackie Earle Haley, who can currectly be seen on the big screen playing Watchmen’s Rorschach, has landed a supporting role in the pilot episode of a TV show based on another DC comic book, Human Target.

The human target of the title is master of disguise Christopher Chance, who hires himself out to act as a decoy for people whose lives are being threatened. Haley will play Chance’s researcher, who gathers the information his boss needs.

Also joining the cast is Chi McBride, who played moody detective Emerson Cod in Pushing Daisies). Mark Valley, who played FBI agent Olivia Dunham’s dead ex-boyfriend in Fringe, will play the title character.

FORMER ER star Julianna Margulies (right), who returns to County General this week for one last appearance as nurse Carol Hathaway, is set to take the lead role in the CBS drama pilot The Good Wife. She’ll play a politician’s wife who decides to resume her former career as a lawyer. Her last major role was also as a lawyer, in Canterbury’s Law, which was axed after just six episodes.

IN casting news that makes the Choob feel oh-so old, former Brat Pack actor Andrew McCarthy (The Breakfast Club, St Elmo’s Fire) has joined the cast of the Gossip Girl spin-off – as the main character’s dad.

The pilot for the spin-off, which will air as a flashback episode of the original show, is set in the 1980s and explores the wild teenage years of Lily Rhodes. McCarthy plays her dad, who is a music company executive.

THE creator of Sex And The City Darren Star has signed a two-year contract with HBO. He will produce his first new show in 10 years under the deal and oversee comedy and drama projects by other writers. He is currently developing the HBO pilot Diary Of A Manhattan Call Girl.

COMEDY cop show Reno 911! returns for its sixth season on April 1 on Comedy Central.

Leave a comment

Filed under Current and recent TV shows, TV News