SciFi Diner Podcast Ep. 152 Part 1
Stuck in Amber, The Earth Sings,
Star Trek Klingon Style, and More.
The SciFi Diner Podcast
A 2012 Parsec Finalist
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Welcome to the Diner.
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- Trivia: Win Kate Mulgrew
- TV News: Fringe News & Walking Dead news. Revealed: 1st details for Whedon’s new S.H.I.E.L.D. TV characters
- Movie News: Siri on Robot Movies, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has a directors, Iron Man 3 set pics show new Iron Patriot armor in all its glory
- Special: The Earth Sings
- Podio Book/Drama News: Our Fair City
- TWIST: Title of Star Trek movie sequel announcement, Ron D. Moore on bringing Trek back to the small screen
- SciFi Five in Five: Top 5 Warehouse 13 quotes
Trivia: Since no one, and I mean NO ONE was able to answer last months trivia, we’re trying a different tactic to give away an autographed picture of Kate Mulgrew, Captain Janeway of Star Trek: Voyager. All you need to do is write in and explain why you are the biggest fan of Kate Mulgrew. Please include your address and the code word mentioned in the first 15 minutes of the show. We’ll be drawing a name the middle of October.
Prize: An Autographed copy of Kate Mulgrew (Captain Janeway)
You will have until October 15th to send us your answers. Please include the code word mentioned in the first 15 minutes of the show. Send your answer with your mailing address to email@example.com, call us at 18885084343, or DM us on Twitter at @scifidiner. Make sure you include your e-mail with all entries! Only one entry per person. The SciFi Diner is not responsible for any injuries occurring if you secretly decide to go all shiny and dress in a browncoat and walk into your local bar.
Fringe showrunner reveals surprising truth about amber’s origins
Over five seasons, the team behind Fox’s Fringe has built a dense sci-fi world full of quirks and nuance, all leading to the future-jump we saw this past Friday with the premiere of season five. But did you know one major plot point that has run the length of the series was actually retconned?
In an interview promoting season five, producer J.H. Wyman told Collider that the concept of using amber to seal cracks between the universes, which showed up early in the first season encasing a bus and has been used and referenced numerous times in the show’s run, wasn’t actually “re-contextualized” into the larger story until later:
“Well, it’s been such a long road of twists and turns, and ideas come from all over. Sometimes something you thought wouldn’t really be as big as it was blows up into something else. There are certain episodes that, all of a sudden, just really touched people. ‘White Tulip’ came from a dream. I thought, ‘Why did that episode touch people?’ We like to be clever and say, ‘Well, we knew a lot of stuff,’ because we did, but the truth is that we didn’t know a lot of stuff, as well. We did not know, at the beginning on the bus, that the amber was amber from the alternate universe. It was re-contextualized. It just fits like a puzzle and you go, ‘Wow, that’s really interesting.’
You find the things that work and the things that don’t work, and you go from there. It’s like a living, breathing organism that you listen to. Sometimes we don’t hear so well, but if you listen to it, it indicates where you should go, naturally. So, that idea has changed where we’re going to end up, even up until the last episode. My thinking on the episode was fluctuating and vacillating between several different ideas.”
Considering how twisty the show has been the past few years, from introducing multiple universes to setting the final year in a future nanny state, it’s not surprising to hear that the writers made some course corrections along the way to get us here. But it’s extremely interesting to see just which concepts were adapted into the plan and not part of it from the start.
The full interview is well worth a read, as Wyman discusses some of the big ideas behind the series.
What do you think of where we’ve ended up in season five? Do the writers have us on the right track, or do you miss the alt-universes of yore?
Get ready for Walking Dead S3 with 4 creepy new webisodes
It may be two weeks until the highly anticipated third season of The Walking Dead begins, but the network is continuing its recent trend of whetting our undead appetite with a series of webisodes. This season? A claustrophobic tale of survivors seeking refuge at an abandoned storage facility.
As the show has grown into its own, the webisodes have gotten more and more elaborate. They still feel a bit low-budget, but the storyline and casting are top-notch—with Lost alum Daniel Roebuck (Doc Arzt) in a co-starring role.
Plus, we even got a peek at Rick Grimes’ past life, via his old storage unit.
Here’s the synopsis:
Cold Storage tells the story of a young man, Chase (played by Josh Stewart), trying to reach his sister in the early days of the zombie apocalypse. He finds temporary shelter in a storage facility run by a former employee named B.J. (Roebuck); however, things are not what they appear.
The new season premieres Oct. 14 on AMC.
Revealed: 1st details for Whedon’s new S.H.I.E.L.D. TV characters
Joss Whedon and company sure don’t mess around. It seemed like only yesterday that we started getting the first details on the TV series that would play home to the agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and now we’re already getting the first details on our main characters.
All right, let’s dive right in and then see where we land. Our first character details are:
SKYE — This late-20s woman sounds like a dream: fun, smart, caring and confident—with an ability to get the upper hand by using her wit and charm.
AGENT GRANT WARD — Quite the physical specimen and “cool under fire,” he sometimes botches interpersonal relations. He’s a quiet one with a bit of a temper, but he’s the kind of guy that grows on you.
AGENT ALTHEA RICE — Also known as “The Cavalry,” this hardcore soldier has crazy skills when it comes to weapons and being a pilot. But her experiences have left her very quiet and a little damaged.
AGENT LEO FITZ and AGENT JEMMA SIMMONS — These two came through training together and still choose to spend most of their time in each other’s company. Their sibling-like relationship is reinforced by their shared nerd tendencies—she deals with biology and chemistry, he’s a whiz at the technical side of weaponry.
Is it just us, or do those first three characters sound an awful lot like Inara, Mal and Zoe from Joss’s old show, Firefly? Not calling it a bad thing, just that it is a bit of a thing.
Otherwise, this is all very general. These are the kind of details that aid the writers as they map out where their characters’ strengths and weaknesses might lie and how those characters will or will not interact with each other. They also serve as a nice little tease for us fans as we try to figure out what this show will be like or, even better, who should be cast in each part.
It’s official! Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has found its director
20th Century Fox has finally selected one of the seven names in contention to direct the sequel to last year’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Can you guess which one it is?
According to Deadline, the studio has made an offer to Matt Reeves, director ofCloverfield and Let Me In. Fox chose Reeves over a list of other highly touted filmmakers that included Guillermo Del Toro (Pacific Rim), Rian Johnson (Looper), Jeff Nichols (Take Shelter), Juan Antonio Bayona (The Orphanage), Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) and J. Blakeson (The Disappearance of Alice Creed).
The chance to direct the film came about quickly last month after Rupert Wyatt, who was behind the camera for Rise, dropped out of the sequel. Wyatt allegedly walked away because he wasn’t sure he could make the movie’s May 23, 2014, release date; Reeves apparently has complete confidence that he can.
The writers of Rise, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, have already handed in a script for Dawn that the studio is apparently very pleased with, so it looks like a big old green light for the return of Caesar (Andy Serkis) as he leads his new breed of superintelligent apes into a full-scale, worldwide revolution against a human race decimated by the same virus that enhanced the apes’ brains (at least, that’s the story we want to see!)
What do you think of Fox’s choice? Is Reeves a good pick to usher in the Dawn of the Planet of the Apes?
This is what happens if you ask Siri’s opinion about robot movies
Apple just keeps innovating. Last fall they released the personal assistant application known as Siri, and everyone’s iPhones started answering questions and reading text messages out loud and giving directions. Now Siri’s taken another step forward, into the realm of film criticism.
Last month, Apple released iOS 6, the latest version of its mobile operating system, and it included a number of expansions to Siri’s abilities. It can now dictate Twitter updates for you, tell you sports statistics, make restaurant reservations and launch apps. It can also pull up movie information, but apparently if you ask it about films that feature artificial intelligence, it gives a little added commentary of its own.
Check out the responses to Blade Runner, Wall-E and 2001: A Space Odyssey.
As you can see, Siri’s very sympathetic to both the Replicants and HAL. That’s why we’re recommending to you right now that you never, ever ask it about The Terminator. There are too many iPhones out in the world to risk a Siri-led uprising.
Iron Man 3 set pics show new Iron Patriot armor in all its glory
Marvel’s next phase of films is well on its way, and flagship standalone series Iron Man is currently shooting its third entry in Florida. Luckily for us, some bystanders snapped some fantastic shots of the new armor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.) and company will be rocking.
According to set reports, the filming took place at a replica of the restaurant Neptune’s Net, and shows off both the new Iron Man armor and the mysterious Iron Patriot suit we’ve been seeing around.
The third film follows the popular Extremis storyline from the character’s comic run, which should make for some great nanotech intrigue.
Sadly, we still don’t know how the Iron Patriot suit fits in to the latest sequel, but rumor has it that it could be adapted as a new version of War Machine. That idea makes the most sense, as the comic version of the character is played by Spider-Man’s Norman Osborn, who is currently unavailable due to a separate Spidey film deal.
Check out the new armor below and let us know what you think:
Listen to the sound Earth makes when its radiation belts sing
Unless you’re a fan of Queen’s soundtrack for the Flash Gordon movie (and really, who isn’t?), you probably don’t associate space with singing very much. But that’s about to change. Thanks to NASA, we can now hear the music of the radio waves coming from Earth’s radiation belts, and it’s spectacular.
Back in August, NASA launched a pair of Radiation Belt Storm Probes into the Van Allen radiation belts surrounding Earth. Each probe carries a device called an Electric and Magnetic Field Instrument Suite and Integrated Science (EMFISIS) receiver, designed by University of Iowa physics professor Craig Kletzing and his team. The probes, and the receivers, are in the radiation belts to study the effect that highly energized “killer electrons” might have on satellites and astronauts traveling through the otherwise harmless radiation.
But there’s something else out there worth checking out, and it’s known as “chorus.” Chorus is the term used to describe the audio version of radio signals emitted by plasma waves as they travel through the belts.
“This is what the radiation belts would sound like to a human being if we had radio antennas for ears,” Kletzing said.
Radio operators have been able to hear low-quality versions of chorus for years, but this is the first time such high-powered instrumentation has captured the sound. Take a listen.
Weird, right? Like a combination of crickets and sonar. As spectacular as that is, though, it’s actually only a mono recording from the testing phase of the probes. Kletzing said he hopes to get a stereo version of chorus after the probes complete their 60-day checkout phase in the coming weeks. It’ll be like Pink Floyd in space.
Our Fair City
Our Fair City is a campy post-apocalyptic science fiction radio epic…for the internet. It is a collaborative work of prophecy, a story of the future told through the art forms of the past, a mashup of steampunk, cyberpunk, film noir, and classic horror that will blow your mind.
This Week in Star Trek:
Exclusive: Sequel Title Confirmed – ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’
As for the title itself, “Into Darkness” does not reveal anything specific about the plot. So for those who Exclusive: Sequel Title Confirmed – ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ September 7, 2012
by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: Star Trek sequel (2013) , trackback
TrekMovie has an update on our earlier story regarding the title for the Star Trek sequel We can now confirm the title that has been chosen by JJ Abrams and Paramount for the 2013 movie. More details below.
Sequel title: “Star Trek Into Darkness”
TrekMovie has confirmed with multiple sources that “Star Trek Into Darkness” has been selected as the title for the 2013 sequel to JJ Abrams’ Star Trek movie. This is a title that comes out of a long process of discussion amongst the creative team. As reported earlier, Paramount tested a number of titles for the film over the summer, including at least one title that did not include “Star Trek.” Also noted in our earlier article, the title (by design) does not include a colon, like were used for the past franchise films such “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “Star Trek: First Contact,” etc.
While Paramount will not officially confirm the news, multiple sources have told TrekMovie this is the title they are going with as of now. It has also been reported by ComingSoon that Paramount has secured the domain names to both www.startrekintodarkness.com and www.startrekintodarknessmovie.com, neither of which has any content.
If you were hoping for “Star Trek Khan” or “The Revenge of Gary Mitchell” you are out of luck. However, “Into Darkness” certainly gives us a hint that this film could have a serious tone and perhaps darker theme than the 2009 Star Trek film. On the other hand the title is also evocative of Star Trek’s core mission of going into the “darkness” of space, to seek out new life and new civilizations. Of course the current Trek team often point to Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy as inspiration, with the second film in that series being titled “The Dark Knight” which itself had some very dark themes. Is this Trek sequel Star Trek’s “Dark Knight”? As that film grossed $1B world wide, I imagine Paramount is certainly hoping it is.
According to sources, the creative team are still working on how they will officially roll out this new title. The first acknowledgement will likely be made with some kind of visual treatment, either a type treatment for the title or possibly even a teaser poster or image. Indications are that this official roll out should be coming soon.
What do you think?
Ron Moore explains what it would take to make a new Trek TV series
While Pushing Daisies creator Bryan Fuller and X-Men director Byan Singer are still dreaming about bringing Star Trek back to TV, Star Trek vet Ron D. Moore explains what it would take to return the sci-fi series to the small screen.
Moore was a writer and producer on many Star Trek series and films, starting with Star Trek: The Next Generation, then Deep Space Nine and Voyager, before he went on to reboot Battlestar Galactica successfully for TV.
So what does Ron D. Moore think it would take to bring back Trek on TV now in the wake of J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek films?
People have to understand that the Star Trek films are a different animal. And that goes for the original series’ movies, as well as those from The Next Generation, and from J.J. By their nature, the Star Trek films are much more action-oriented, with space battles, big villains, lots of running and jumping. The stakes for Earth and the universe are always enormous.
But the lifeblood of Star Trek’s television shows is its morality plays and social commentary. It’s sci-fi that provides a prism on human society and culture. The movies are never really going to do what the episodes do, like split Picard into two in a transporter beam and then talk philosophically about the nature of humanity, which parts of our strength come from good and which from evil. The movies are never going to do that. Star Trek: The Next Generation was about those moral issues, about how societies grow and are differently affected. None of these are topics that the movies are going to tackle.
To create Star Trek in the form that people are familiar with requires another television series, and I think it will be successful again in that medium. You have to spend some time talking about its form and structure, and how to update it again for a new audience. You still want the “boldly go where no one has gone before” part with a ship, crew and ongoing mission. That’s part and parcel of the franchise.
But you have to be able to tackle big ideas, which are larger than chasing the villain of the week. That’s really not what the series was very good at. I mean, you could look back at the original Star Trek series or The Next Generation and find some cool action-adventure episodes with space battles, but the show is about so much more than that. If you were trying to do that flavor of Star Trek on television every week, it would just fail.
Do you guys agree with Ron D. Moore?
See an awesome Trek Gangnam Style parody done entirely in Klingon
We’ve seen a lot of sci-fi parodies of Korean pop star PSY’s worldwide hit “Gangnam Style,” but more keep beaming in. A new, extra-nerdy version of the tune just hit the ‘net, and this time it’s done in an alien language.
This particular version comes courtesy of the nerdy chicks at Comediva, who decided that getting into costume and doing the dance, or writing their own weird lyrics, just wasn’t enough. No, this called for boldly going where no parody video has gone before. So they translated all the lyrics into Klingon, dressed up and gave the world “Klingon Style.”
Scifi Five In Five
Warehouse 13 quotes
5. Artie Nelson: Y’know what the Talmud says? When someone’s comin’ to kill ya, get up early, kill ’em first.
4.Claudia: Does this mean i’m an agent now?
Artie: No it means i can reach you anytime of day or night.
Claudia: Okay not so good.
3.“‘ I knew you were not Myka when you kissed me, Myka would never kiss me even if her life depended on it”
2.Steve: Wait, Pete and Myka get a dagger and we get a plague? Why don’t we stop being the B-Team?
Claudia: We are not the B-Team fool, we are the second A-Team.
2.Myka: Listen, when Cody hit you, I think that I saw something.
Pete: All I saw were stars oh and little birds.
1.Myka: You sure you are ok? You still look a little woozy.
Pete: That’s my look.