Season 1 was great, although I understand why some people found it a bit slow to start off with. The book was a bit like that too but when it gets going it is great. The first season just dealt with the events of the first half of book one, so there is a lot of exciting stuff still to come. If you haven’t read the books or seen the first series, I highly recommend you do both. The whole Expanse series of books by James S.A. Corey are a cracking read and I hope they carry on for decades.
There are quite a few Expanse trailers around, including a bizarre recap of season one using cats (seriously). This trailer came out a month ago but is bloody superb and should whet your appetite. I will be doing all I can to publicise the show because if another Firefly scenario happens, I don’t think I can recover. I’m officially very excited.
I haven’t reviewed a TV show in a while and as I have been binge watching Rick and Morty on Netflix recently, I might as well do that.
Rick and Morty is an animated science fiction comedy on Adult Swim. It follows the adventures of a genius alcoholic scientist and his grandson – Rick and Morty respectively. It is, to cut a long review short, absolutely brilliant. While it may not be quite as laugh out loud funny as Futurama (the obvious comparison), the scifi ideas and concepts explored are superb, thoughtful and generally pretty fun. Futurama has some pretty cool ideas but Rick and Morty explore slightly different areas.
Among other things, the show explores the idea of multi-dimensional existence. Rick, Morty, and sometimes the older sister Summer, are always popping through portals and occasionally meeting other versions of themselves. At times the show can be quite bleak in a nothing really matters and everything is just chance, kind of way. This existentialist element can get a bit much for some I guess, but I like it. Some quite violent stuff happens to some of the characters, even the main ones, but it doesn’t really matter in a multiverse. Rick frequently destroys entire worlds but if you can just pop to another universe where everyone is ok, it becomes hard to care. Rick in particular is massively selfish, amoral, and just enjoys science without much thought to consequence.
I am getting a slightly deep but basically, if you like science fiction that explores philosophy and deep scifi ideas, but also has drunk people, chases and lots of aliens, then Rick and Morty is worth a watch. I love it. It is on Netflix but you should be able to find it elsewhere if you are vaguely intelligent. Season 3 is due out sometime soon-ish.
To give you an example of the sort of thing you can expect, here is a brief clip that is vaguely reminiscent of Star Trek Next Generation episode “The Inner Light”. Just to give you an insight into the moral ambiguity of Rick, just before this clip, he had invented an incredible gun which he then sold to a hit-man so he could play games.
While I’m at it, here is a Rick and Morty in the Simpsons couch gag. Enjoy:
I love The Walking Dead. It is so damned bleak and gory and filled with really horrible violent people. Brilliant. It explores the idea that if there is an outbreak of zomb- I mean Walkers, what would happen? Mostly the conclusion is that most of the survivors would be a bit psychopathic and no one would thinking of heading for sea or remote islands or anything. Or maybe they do and the whole show just follows all the nutters around as they are more interesting.
Possibly in an attempt to lighten the mood somewhat, UK streaming service – Now TV – hired John Cleese to do a recap of everything that has happened for the whole of Walking Dead seasons 1 to 6. Damned funny it is too. Just like the show, there is a fair amount of gore. But this time you’re laughing, so it is ok.
The Walking Dead is back with season 7 on October 28th. I can’t wait. Zombies! I mean Walkers! (Seriously, why can’t they say zombies?) Here is Mr Cleese. Enjoy.
Star Trek has been on our screens for 50 glorious years. I love Trek and have seen every episode of every series with the exception of most of Enterprise. Which is on Netflix and on my list as it apparently gets pretty good. Sorry Enterprise… For quite big chunk of my youth, there was only the original series with James T Kirk, Leonard “Bones” McCoy, Spock, Uhura, Chekov, Scotty and Sulu. Plus a variety of sexy ladies in mini-skirts and male canon-fodder in red shirts. Then there were the movies. I was about 15 when Next Generation came out and therefore about 17 when that started to get good.
I could go on and on about Star Trek but as someone who writes a science fiction website, it is predictable that I would love it. So I wanted to post something Star Trek related. I saw this clip entitled “10 things Dr Leonard McCoy is not” and thought I would jump on the celebratory bandwagon. Thanks to one of my favourite websites www.io9.com for the clip. Happy 50th Trek.
I should start this post by stating that THIS IS NOT REAL. Sadly, there is no animated Firefly series in production. An artist called Stephen Byrne did it as a labour of love and to generally raise and dash the hopes of Firefly fans everywhere. Which is a shame as this trailer looks great and I want to see it.
I bloody love Firefly and still get annoyed when I see any show I don’t like that has gone to a second series. If it was made now, I suspect it would have survived as special effects are cheaper these days. I say that based on having no idea what I am talking about. If you haven’t seen the original series, unlikely if you are reading this, you are missing out on life.
This has been all over my social media feed but I feel that if enough people witter on about it, then maybe it will happen. Now watch the trailer, weep, then complain loudly all over the internet that it isn’t a thing. Enjoy.
Samuel L Jackson, Game of Thrones. Together at last.
If you haven’t seen this already and are a Game of Thones fan, you really should, it is brilliant. If you haven’t seen GOT then you are missing out and should watch all 60 hours or so, then watch this.
This is basically Samuel L Jackson giving an expletive and spoiler-filled description of nearly everything that has happened so far in Game of Thrones. It is genius. There are huge gaps, which he briefly refers to, but it is a great clip and it isn’t really aimed at newbies anyway. Even though that is ostensibly what it is supposed to be.
Next I would like Mr Jackson to summarize the whole Harry Potter series. Oh, and Star Wars. This could be a whole new career for him – a one man ‘Honest Trailers’.
I absolutely love the original Westworld movie so when I heard they were making a new one I was reasonably interested, although deep down was prepared for inevitable disappointment. I have since changed that opinion after learning about the incredible cast (Anthony Hopkins, Evan Rachel Wood, Tessa Thompson, and Ed Harris), budget (lots), people involved, and the fact that it will be on HBO. Also, it will be written by Jonathan Nolan, who is generally pretty reliable. There are also rumours that it will be pretty violent and very explicitly naughty. Go HBO!
Yul Brynner in the original
Then I saw this Westworld trailer (it might be a teaser trailer, I have forgotten how you tell,) and am utterly sold and ludicrously excited. It looks incredible and it doesn’t even have Yul Brynner in it. If you haven’t seen the original Westworld, you really should, it’s a great movie. I just hope they include some of the other worlds in the show as they were pretty cool too. I am not counting the sequel as I can’t remember anything about it, so it is possibly suppressed for a reason.
After years of talk and possible cancellations, the series now has a confirmed release: October. Probably.
Anyway, I will nerdgasm in my own time. Here is the trailer:
There has been no new Star Trek on TV for over a decade and frankly, look at the state of humanity right now. So there was great excitement when CBS announced that it has decided to make a Star Trek new series. Unfortunately, it will be an exclusive on the CBS All Access, so unless you have that service then I guess you are doomed and can’t watch it ever. (Although I’m sure humanity will find a way.)
In even better news, it isn’t related to the new Star Trek movies, which were fun but now have no planet Vulcan and if a character dies they can presumably now get some super blood and be ok. Also, TV Star Trek should be more cerebral – great scifi ideas and the odd bit of action. Not all action.
Bryan Fuller will be the showrunner – he used to write for DS9 and Voyager. In the writing chair, amongst others, will be Nicholas Meyer, who wrote Star Trek movies Wrath of Khan and Undiscovered Country, which were films 2 and 6 respectively. So single digit even numbers, which as all Trekkies know, equals good.
Exciting news! The other day at a memorial event for Terry Pratchett, Gaiman confirmed that he would be personally adapting the Good Omens novel, which he co-wrote in collaboration with Pratchett. Initially, he always said that he wouldn’t produce anything Good Omens related unless his long time friend Pratchett was involved – for example there was a recent radio adaptation featuring cameos from Gaiman and Pratchett.
But then, and this is really bloody touching, Terry Pratchett wrote a letter to be opened after his death, which asked Gaiman to personally write an adaptation for TV. At which point he agreed. Or as Gaiman said at the memorial event – “At that point, I think I said, ‘You bastard, yes.'” He also revealed that the Good Omens TV show would be a six parter.
By the way, if you haven’t read the book, you should. It’s brilliant. It’s about the end of the world and a demon and an angel team up to deal with the anti-christ. Who happens to be an English school-kid.
Good Omens has long been the subject of attempts to bring it to the screen, big or small, but it finally looks like it might happen. In other purely Pratchett news, there may well be a film based on Mort – which is also superb and is basically a story about Death taking on an apprentice. Even more exciting and more vague and unlikely to happen, is a TV show based on the Watch. Which would be absolutely brilliant.
I love Gaiman and Pratchett and am very excited about seeing Good Omens. I have been putting it off but am finally reading ‘Raising Steam’. I feel sad to be reading one of the last Pratchett books ever and had been delaying it for weird psychological reasons. I have read every one of his books since his first book came out and it has been a yearly treat. Having said that, it has been 30 years since I started reading him, so maybe I have forgotten enough to go through them all again.
If you haven’t read Gaiman or Pratchett or Good Omens – you are in for a treat.