Last night, Akemi made dinner…
She used a little sugar and vinegar for the sushi rice and some sushi-grade fish from Seafood City in the Granville Island Market (where owner, Brian, was more than happy to offer helpful advice, and clean and slice the fish to Akemi’s specifications). It was an outstanding meal.
It’s rare that I recommend food-related businesses that aren’t restaurants but, since we’re on the subject, this is THE place to go for fresh fish and seafood in Vancouver. The staff are incredibly knowledgeable and very friendly: http://www.seafoodcitygi.com/default.aspx
And now a little something from James Robbins in the Art Department…
Another example that I’m growing increasingly impatient in my old age. The other night, I dreamt that I was back in Montreal and, for some reason, had decided to ride one of those ridiculous little scooters (like the one Marty G. used to putter around in) downtown. When it was time to head back home, I realized I had the dogs with me. I considered every possible way to my dogs and scooter home (renting a van, calling someone to pick me up, taking the scooter back on the highway with the leashed dogs running alongside), growing increasingly frustrated until I reached the point where I just had enough and thought to myself: “I’m so annoyed, I must be dreaming. Screw this. I’m waking up.” And did.
This is a great example of the power of positive denial and one’s innate ability to not only give up in the face of adversity but completely abandon all sense of contextual reason and still persevere. Granted it was only a dream, but it nevertheless serves as a lesson to those who invariably seek the rational solution to a problem in the mistaken belief that logic always prevails. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been stalked through the London subway by knife-wielding maniacs or driven off a freeway in mid-construction only to be saved, not by logic or the philosophically pat acceptance of my own mortality, but by transferring my consciousness from the fantasy setting of my dreamscape to the waking world. Sometimes the answer to the problem is not to answer the problem, but to WAKE THE HELL UP!
I fully intend to adopt this refreshing new outlook on life the next time I fall out of an airplane, show up at school in my underwear, or get script notes I don’t like.
Quade writes: “Since for some reason the topic of SGA’s cancellation has come to light again. Do you think it was cancelled because Keller was too incredible?”
Answer: Keller WAS pretty damn incredible and, while it’s possible to have too much of a good thing, this doesn’t apply to Keller.
Annie from Freemantle writes: “Do you call them Zed Pms or Zee pms?”
Answer: Everyone but Rodney Mckay calls them zee pm’s.
Mel writes: “Syfy doesn’t have an unlimited amount of money for series. It also doesn’t have an unlimited amount of time slots for series, especially not for series, which they usually show in the evening first. So when SGU was greenlighted, Syfy already has a big amount of money and a time slot taken, which couldn’t be used for SGA anymore.”
Answer: That’s a pretty big assumption, especially when one considers they’d done it before, running both SG-1 and SGA back to back on Friday nights (along with BSG). And, again, if that was the case, then the decision to drop Atlantis would have been made the same time as the decision to pick up SGU, meaning we would have known about the fate of both shows at the same time. We didn’t.
Mel also writes: “Why do you think that there wouldn’t have been a chance for a 7th season of SGA, if there would have been a 6th season?”
Answer: The longer a show is on the air, the more expensive it is to produce. I think that, by season seven, the costs of producing the series would have probably surpassed an upside benefits. My opinion of course.
Mel also writes: “And you said that the greenlight of SGU “meant at least two years of work for the crew and studio”. Was that already clear when SGU was greenlighted or do you ONLY mean that in hindsight?”
Answer: I mean in hindsight (I do say “given what we know now”). The second season of SGU was far from assured and the pick-up was dependent on the show’s performance.
Mel also writes: “Would the “mere” 1.6 million viewers, which SGA’s last season got, be enough for SGU? Or does SGU need even more viewers?”
Answer: I honestly don’t know what number we have to hit. At the end of the day, it won’t just be ratings that will determine the show’s fate. And it goes without saying that we’ll never be satisfied, no matter what the number, and will always seek to build our audience.
jreeths writes: “How is black garlic different from regular garlic that you can get anywhere?”
Answer: It’s fermented garlic and it’s been around for a while, mainly used in Korean cuisine. It contains twice as many antioxidants are regular garlic and has a sweet, almost syrup-like flavor.
EvanH writes: “This may have been asked of you before, but on average, how long does it take for you to finish a script, and how much input do the other writers have on your work? Also, what exactly is involved in getting a start in the industry?”
Answer: From concept to final draft, it takes me about a month to complete a script. As for how to get your foot in the door in the television industry: 1. Write. And rewrite. A lot! 2. Write a couple of spec scripts, either original pilots or scripts for existing shows. These will serve as your calling card. 3. Find an agent willing to read unsolicited submissions and send him your specs. 4. If they choose to represent you, great. If not, try another agency but be sure to listen to any advice that first agency may offer. Also, re-read and rewrite, accept constructive criticism. Become a better writer. Oh, and if an agency says they’re unsure about you but suggest the services of a script doctor that will read your script for a fee, forget it and move on. 5. Alternately, you could do what I did and get your start writing for animation. Again, spec scripts are your calling card, but the animation world tends to offer more opportunities for first-time writers.
PBMom writes: “Have you ever considered opening your own restaurant, Joe?”
Answer: All the time, but since I don’t know anything about the restaurant business, I’m pretty sure I’d lose my shirt.
El Floruso writes: “1)Can we imagine a cameo of other members of the Atlantis’ cast in the second season of SGU, like zelenka ?
2) Are we seeing Richard Dean Anderson in the second season of SGU ?”
Answers: 1) Probably not. 2) No plans for General O’Neill to put in an appearance.
Ammomonkey writes: “When did we star using the term ‘Blueberry Aliens’ for the alien race from ‘Space’?”
Answer: I guess since I referred to them as Blueberry Aliens on this blog.
Ammomonkey also writes: “I’ve just finished re-watching SGU and I have to say, when the episodes are watched back-to-back I liked it a lot more. I think the pace is rather slow on individual episodes and maybe that’s why they never grabbed my attention.”
Answer: One of the things that surprised me about the first season of the show was how jarring the cuts to the commercial proved to be. We’ve taken steps to avoid a similar issue this year by creating a bit of buffer, going to black first. It’s how we watch the episodes here in the production offices and it makes a world of difference.
Lewis writes: “Do you still plan to write every day while in Japan, or are you going to have Carl guest host your blog during that time?”
Answer: Nope, I’ll definitely continue blogging through my Japan trip. One of the reasons I continue to blog is it provides a daily summary of my life, allowing me to go back and consult past entries when necessary – like, for instance, going back to check out last year’s Japan trip to research the restaurants and places I want to revisit on this trip.
Escyos writes: “Also how different would you think SGU would be if Senator Armstrong hadn’t had been so seriously injured (and they someone closed the shuttle door)? Would there have been a mutiny?”
Answer: Probably, yes.
Airelle writes: “What are the white things in the seafood pancake,looks interesting..?”
Michelle writes: “Joe, you said you think Friday Night Lights is the best show on TV. Have you watched Mad Men? FNL is good, but Mad Men is some higher level of television; maybe the best I’ve ever seen. I’m convinced I’m not smart enough to even see/understand all the levels of it. Plus it’s just beautiful to look at. Have you watched it, and if so what do you think?”
Answer: I greatly enjoyed the first season of Mad Men – up until the “I must’ve eaten a bad sandwich” sequence in the finale.
Yes, I know it occasionally happens in real life to, uh, special cases but come on! This was an intelligent character. To not know you’re pregnant is one thing, but to not know you’re pregnant and then give birth moments later stretches credulity, especially in a show that had, up to that point, done such a tremendous job of creating a very believable world.
Garbriele writes: “I wanted to ask you if the Daedalus-class ships’ set is still up and if you used it for season two of STARGATE UNIVERSE. Thanks for your answers.”
Answer: The set isn’t up but it can be if we need it.