First things first!  My french bulldog, Lulu, eating kale chips.  Please raise volume to maximum before viewing:

Picture 1

One of the worst kept secrets on this blog has been the identity of that scifi series Paul and I have been trying to set up.  As many of you know, back when we were working on Stargate, we started developing our own SF series in the hopes of rolling right into production with the same crew if and when Stargate ever ended.  The only problem at the time was that there was no end in sight.  Every time we thought Stargate would close up shop, the show would get picked up for another season.  It was a classy problem that allowed us to really flesh out the concept and characters of this prospective new show.

Unfortunately, when Stargate did end, the timing proved difficult. Instead of taking advantage of our terrific Stargate crew, we ended up having to put our project on hold while we took a job in Toronto.  But rather than relegate it to the back burner, we thought of an interesting way to go – and a great way to help sell the show.  We hooked up with Dark Horse Comics and launched the series idea as a comic book.

DARKMTR #1 CVRThe first four issues of Dark Matter garnered great reviews and, when the trade paperback came out in October, we used it as a calling card. Having worked in development, I was aware of, and wanted to draw on, the added appeal of an established property.  Also, half the battle of pitching is to help a potential buyer imagine the project you have created – and I could think of no better pitch document than that trade paperback.

DM4We went out with a story backed by some fantastic visuals compliments of artist Garry Brown and colorist Ryan Hill.  The response was incredibly positive.  Even more so after Paul and I delivered the pilot script.  Still, my concern was the budget, making sure we had enough money to do it properly (visual effects don’t come cheap after all!), so I was heartened by word from our producing partner today that the response in Europe has been equally great.

Now all that remains is for that final piece of the puzzle to fall into place.  Yes, we’ve been waiting a while but all indications are we’ll be receiving word soon.  If it’s positive, then things are going to get very busy very quickly.  If it’s not, then we’ll have to go elsewhere for that final piece – which will, of course, delay things.

But hopefully it all comes together as expected.  And, once it does, dare I say it…

No, better not.


shinyhula writes: “And why no zombies on this list? Night of the Living Dead, 28 Weeks Later, Zombieland; what have the unliving done to deserve your scorn?”

Answer: I was listing Scariest Endings and, off the top of my head, none of the zombie entries came to mind.  Well, now that I think of it, maybe the original Night of the Living Dead would have been a good candidate.

ancuetas writes: “Is that you know what music is there at the beginning of the video.”

Answer: This piece of music, from SG-1’s Demons, was before my time (I joined the show in its fourth season), but it’s safe to assume that it was composed by the late, great Joel Goldsmith.

dasndanger writes: “Also, this whole thing with the shutting down of cell towers in cases like this? That’s why I still have a corded old timey landline tele-o-phone.”

Answer: Hmmm.  Good point.  I haven’t had a landline in four years.

RLAVILLA writes: “Recently there have been two new Stargate games for Android and iPhone, and I think that will be the new product line, which has been selected by MGM for Stargate franchise. How about converting “Stargate Extinction” in a game for these new platforms?”

Answer: Not my call.  That would be for the studio to decide.

Jen writes: “A tad random, but I went in on my birthday to have this done but the artist was booked up so I had it done yesterday.”

Answer: Great.  But I insist you draw the line at one of those Jaffa forehead tattoos.

baterista9 writes: “Just saw Cookie on Saturday at Sea World of Texas.”

Answer: Yes, he was there for his cousin Esmerelda’s wedding.

fsmn36 writes: “But the entire movie plays off the alcoholic!Tony arc from the comics and the Rhodey scene makes 20x more sense when you consider Tony is basically planning on suicide/knows he’s going to die. What seems a tacky action scene becomes a heart breaking fight between friends while Tony desperately gives everything he loves away to the few people that matter to him.”

Answer: Sounds terrific.  Unfortunately, none of that came across onscreen.

gforce writes: “Did you ever take Akemi up to Whistler yet? You should take her out to a nice dinner or even a weekend up there!”

Answer: I retired my krazy karpet years ago.

Seth writes: “How hard would it be to get the cast on board for a Kickstarter for the series or movies? Looks as if Veronica Mars just got 5.5 million in Kickstarter funds from fans!”

Answer: 5.5 million may seem like a lot, but consider that the previous SG-1 movies cost 7+ million each to produce – and those productions made use of existing sets and production personnel.

Tam Dixon writes: “Did you try one of the dog cookies for quality control? You did, didn’t you?”

Answer: I didn’t, but someone I know (hint: she’s Japanese) DOES taste test for quality control.

Tam Dixon also writes: “Anyways, what about another trip? New York, L.A. or maybe even go down South. I wouldn’t recommend Memphis, unless you bring a gun but what about New Orleans or Savannah, GA?”

Answer: Akemi definitely wants to go to New York and, after reading Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, I’ve wanted to check out Savannah.  That said, both L.A. and Vegas are closer and more likely short trip destinations.  This, of course, is entirely dependent on our finding a dog sitter.

astrumporta writes: “I think you should bring Akemi to San Francisco for her b-day!”

Answer: It’s also on the list.  Good eatin’!  How goes, Michelle?

pennlynn writes: “You’re brave man Joe! I like having a nice drink but other than the whiskey I’m not sure I would try that haul of liquor!”

Answer: I tried the Nikka whiskey with Lawren last night when he came over for the American Horror Story marathon.  It was damn good, and much better straight up than on the rocks.  How went the t.v. interview?

41 thoughts on “April 16, 2013: Dark Matter developments! Mailbag! My dog eating kale chips!

  1. Looking forward to hearing positive news about Dark Matter soon. Had a fall up the dugout stairs tonight at older son’s baseball game. Am back at home now in the bed with ice on my knee and fingers. Is quite painful when you land front first on concrete.

  2. “baterista9 writes: “Just saw Cookie on Saturday at Sea World of Texas.”

    Answer: Yes, he was there for his cousin Esmerelda’s wedding.”

    That explains why The Count was wearing his best brocade cape. 😉

  3. Hey, if you decide on Savannah, let me know and we’ll bring Riley and Cody up to meet you and take you to lunch. 🙂 Still, I say New York for Akemi!

    I hate mosquitoes. They’ve gotten into the screened patio and they’re eating me alive. I’m outta here, have a great night!

  4. But seriously, Beth B. and I enjoyed a “Beluga encounter” with Imaq, the Beluga whale from Vancouver Aquarium that is on loan to SW-TX. Photos are posted on Facebook; search “Gilder McCarroll” or “Beth Baisch”. (Just pretend that you don’t see the large woman with graying hair.)

  5. Definitely visit Savannah. Visited 4 years ago and fell in love with the city and people.

  6. G’day

    Good luck with the Dark Matter tv series.
    Fingers crossed – Jonas style.

  7. I’m not sure if that constitutes animal abuse or not. But since the victim seems to be ok, I guess we will forgive you. Fingers crossed on the Dark Matters project. Would love to see you busy putting out some quality viewing for us.
    One other thing. Have you considered some random way of deciding on the bday trip? Perhaps take a map, grid it it, then draw numbers/letters to determine where you will go? something like a superbowl pool? maybe give yourself three draws, just so you don’t end up in nowheresville midwest America. you could even fudge the size of the squares, to increase the odds of a “good” trip. Then simply choose a location in the area. if nothing else, you might end up with some laughs at your options, before you trash the whole thing. Just saying….

  8. 1. Fingers crossed for Dark Matter!

    2. Finally heard from my neighbors – they went to California with their daughter who JUST moved to Cali from Boston. She had lived right around the corner from the blast, and this was the first year in a decade that she wasn’t there at the finish line to see the runners. Needless to say, they are counting their blessings.

    3. Just a few blocks from home tonight my exhaust system decided to bite the dust…literally. The thing broke and was dragging facing forward and I was afraid it would catch on something and rip off, so I pulled over and called the hubby. He wasn’t much help because he was still working and on top of that, he had an uncontrollable urge to lecture me about not getting the car in the shop yesterday. 🙄 (The thing only started making noise on Saturday…it’s not like I had a chance to get into the garage on Monday.) Anyway, there I was on the side of the road with half my exhaust on the ground. I decided I’d have to MacGyver it. Found a long length of rope in the trunk (ya know, for when I need to tie people up and stuff) and figured it would do the trick. It was nylon and sort of slippy, so I passed the rope under the car and under the exhaust pipe, brought it through the driver’s side door and tied it to the pull handle on the passenger side, then brought the other end up through the passenger window. Got in the car, started it up, pulled the rope tight and lifted the exhaust off the ground, and drove home without incident.

    Now…where’s that Jeff fella? I think I might have a job for him… 😉


  9. Here’s to smoooooooth sailing for Dark Matter!

    Cookie and Esmerelda are cousins?!!?

    @pennlynn – I saw your article, too. It was great! I’m glad to see you back here so soon even with how busy you must be.

  10. Oh, scariest endings. It was right there in the title. I thus withdraw my addition of the Sixth Sense, just to be rigorous.

  11. Oh Joe! That Dark Matter news is exciting! I’d almost too be tempted to say it’s smoo… Yeah, you’re right, better not. Yet. *still excited*

    “Sounds terrific. Unfortunately, none of that came across onscreen.”
    Exactly. I didn’t detect any subtlety to it at all.

    “I retired my krazy karpet years ago.”
    *snort* Maybe you should reconsider! I remember those as a blast! Dangerous as hell, but a blast! (The only thing better may be Super Slider Snow Skates I was going to suggest a ride on the Whistler-Blackcomb Peak 2 Peak gondola, but then thought – better not.

  12. Do you think Lulu sounds like that when she is out with her boyfriend Ivon on a dinner date? 😆

  13. Regarding kickstarter, I do believe Stargate has a much bigger fanbase than Veronica Mars. Stargate and TXF I think have an incredibly dedicated and loyal fan following. If anyone reputable wanted to run with this idea it could really happen.
    I’ve been led to believe money is only taken from people IF the monetary goal is reached. So if you need 8 mill, set the bar at 8 mil, if it never gets there, too bad, but if it does FREAKIN’ AWESOME!
    I really believe there would be 8000 people out there willing to cough up $1000 if it meant they got to see their favourite characters again.

    Regarding tattoos, I think you give sound advice Joe. 🙂

  14. Awesome news on Dark Matter.

    I’m going to look for kale chips at my grocer, since they are Lulu approved. I made low carb brownies with sugar susbtitute and garbanzo flour; it smelled amazing, which was the first warning sign that they were gonna taste terrible. My healthy baking attemps always mock me by looking great and tasting like wet paper. I’m going to try baking with Stevia next and see if I can get something more brownie like.

  15. I’m very excited for your series Dark Matter 🙂 I feel bad that I haven’t yet picked up the comics. Will try to change that soon unless you have a spare few copies lying around you feel like parting with??

    The interview went great. Again I have a new respect for you. The CTV National news team was here for over 3 hours. We shot many things so that it would give the editors plenty to work with. Me on the computer, me walking the dogs up and down the same few meters of sidewalk, me and my sister looking at old photos….and with all that I have NO idea what the final outcome will look like or how long the segment is. The correspondent was John Vennavally-Rao who conducted the interiew and he was AMAZING so nice!! I’m so bad with names and can’t recall the camera-man’s name but also amazing both animal lovers and spent a lot of time with my dogs 🙂
    I have not a clue at this point when it will air because of the bombings in Boston.

    Glad you are enjoying the new alchol, have you had Absinthe before? That stuff scares the living crap out of me!!

    That video of Lulu eating the kale chip is just so cute. LOVE the little noise she makes before getting it!

  16. Best of luck with Dark Matter. If that doesn’t pan out, the Lulu video convinced me a comedy about a couple in Canada with their dogs would pan out.

  17. woooohooooo….on the Dark Matter. crossing all crossable parts.

    @das – that Jeff guy is the father of innovative cooking, invention, and fixing.
    Das is the mother of taking lemons and making lemoncello (better than lemonade)….hooo rah to your practical and inventive nature. Glad you got home without further incident.

    And….what did Mr Das have to say about your smarts?

    Ditto what Michael said….the Lulu comedy can work. In fact, the title could be something like… Life with Lulu.

  18. Okay, you definitely need to sample Lulu’s eating sounds for use in Dark Matter. Very other-worldly.

    On that note, here’s hoping you find a dog sitter so you can venture down this way, even if it is to Vegas instead of poor, neglected San Fran.

    I hope Vancouver fixes their filming tax problem before you have to move away to film Dark Matter, but either way, wishing you great luck closing that deal!

  19. @DAS
    So. Which do you prefer?… “DasGyver” or “MacDAS”..??
    whatever, You **ROCK**, GIRLFRIEND!! 😀

  20. I’m so giddy for you that it will all go so well and production will start and slightly even more excited that Europe could be a destination for filming?? Woohoo!

  21. @Joe:

    Promising developments on Dark Matter! Fingers are crossed!


    Now…where’s that Jeff fella? I think I might have a job for him…

    I’m currently in Naples on business, so it might be awhile 😉 . I was supposed to go to Milan tonight, but since that meeting was cancelled, I’ll be going to the UK instead. I’m flying back to Chicago a week from today.

    And Naples has been hosting the America’s Cup this week, so lots of tourists, press, and sailors.

    @gforce on travel yesterday:

    I would like to cut down on my travel, but I have too many things going on with work to make that likely. At least sometimes I get to take my family along with me using the frequent flier miles.

  22. Joe: I hope Lulu does okay with those Kale chips. My sister’s dogs end up with all kinds of unpleasant problems coming out of the back end when they eat stuff not normally in their diets.

    As for the slip and slide, good plan putting that away, but, did you know you can do more in Whistler than ski … or slip…and/or slide…There’s the peak to peak gondola: , and there are a series of zip lines if you enjoy that sort of thing: There is also some good dining up there.

  23. It’s still the morning but it’s been crazy. I had to make two trips to school sending my son off on a band trip. That put me an hour behind everything for a while. Finally got caught up!

    I can certainly understand wanting to take a closer trip! However, I don’t understand why you didn’t try a cookie. They look very delicious. Has Akemi thought about selling those at a farmer’s market or something?

    Das: You amaze me….fabulous idea and execution! I wonder if someone took your picture. You know, something like “You know the driver in front of you is a red neck when…” 😆 Just kidding, it really was a good idea.

    Deni: Sorry the pooch didn’t work out?

  24. JeffW said:

    I’m currently in Naples on business, so it might be awhile . I was supposed to go to Milan tonight, but since that meeting was cancelled, I’ll be going to the UK instead. I’m flying back to Chicago a week from today.

    And Naples has been hosting the America’s Cup this week, so lots of tourists, press, and sailors.


    sylvia said:

    …that Jeff guy is the father of innovative cooking, invention, and fixing.

    Actually, I’m startin’ to think he’s a spy…or Special Agent Pendergast…

    Also Mr. Das, though impressed with my skills, was not surprised. He’s kinda gotten used to me being the ‘fixer’ around here, especially when it comes to conundrums. I thank my daddy for giving me a ‘mechanical’ brain. 🙂

    @ Tam Dixon – I’m more afraid that someone took my picture when I was down on my hands and knees with my big butt sticking up in the air. 😛

    @ Ganymede – How’s about MacDanger? 😀

    @ Joey – If dinner sucks, I’m blaming YOU! (More on this later…like, AFTER dinner. 😉 )


  25. @ Joe Lulu is SuperCute even swallowing. Broke a leg with the Dark Matter Thing, the concept has many possibilities and we all have an almost blind trust in your art to make it not only interesting but also fun. In a word that personal touch of you. 🙂

  26. I second Savannah, it’s awesome, like Charleston’s goth-victorian sister. The food in Savannah is terrific, and the beaches are vast and beautiful. If you can get a pet sitter do the Southern tour, Charleston, Savannah and Memphis.

  27. Go Dark Matter!!! “”Smooth…..~sailing………..!!
    Lulu is so cute, and I thought she was gonna bite the hand that was feeding her or lovingly put it in her teeth,,funny, thanks for sharin.
    ~~And @das,, MacDanger, I vote for that one, you go girl!! ding dang fancy auto~~mobiles,,,,.

  28. Joe,
    Are you particular on answering Question’s???put a few on your blog at times never got any response…could it be maybe my question’s were boring???it’s O.K. Joe still read your Blog…..

  29. @Shinyhula: You sold me on Savannah! Is Savannah as humid as the rest of the South? I live in Northern Mississippi but since Savannah is near a coast …. I’ve lived down South most of my life and have a hard time in the summer. We go to Flordia beaches and I can handle that better. Might be because of the coastal breeze or the beach view. 😉

    @Mr. M: Have you ever been down South? I’m just wondering if you’ve ever been in 100f (+) with 70%(+) humidity. My Northern friends compare it to breathing water or being in a steam bath. Still, I believe the food in Savannah or New Orleans might just be worth a little heat stroke.

    @Das: You sure can tell a story.

    @JeffW: safe travels and good eating! Hopefully, you’ll be home making cheese cake and pizza soon.

    My best friend’s hubby is letting us rent his Destin condo for cheap in October (fall break). The boys are busy all summer 🙁 . It will be nice seeing the Gulf again.

  30. Thumbs up and fingers crossed for your Dark Matter Project. Food handling can be dangerous; be careful with the fingers.

  31. @ Airelle – MacDanger it is! Now…get me my own tv show. 🙂

    @ Tam Dixon – Tell a story? I’ve learned from the master. *winks at Joe* …. Ya know…CARL! 😀

    @ Joey – You’re off the hook, buddy…dinner was fantastic! Now, you may be wondering what I made, and why you were involved. Well, since you raved about it with other meats, I decided to try making london broil, but with brining instead of a standard marinade. I did tweak it a little – a cupish of kosher salt, a cupish of raw sugar, several cloves of minced garlic, fresh ground black pepper and fresh ground coriander. Let it sit for several hours, then rinsed, patted dry, and rubbed with black pepper and a steak rub. Broiled it (yes…I actually broiled it! Had I grilled it then it would have been a London grill, no?), and let it rest a bit after taking it out of the oven. It was surprisingly tender, and delicious!! Served it with baked potato and butter-drenched asparagus. Here’s a picture – I usually don’t like my meat this pink, but this was an exception (the ‘square’ ends are because I kept stealing pieces as I cut it – that’s hubby’s plate… 😀 ).

    Anyway – thank you for introducing me to something new. I told mom about it and she’s eager to try because she said she’s never been able to make a tender london broil. Ya know, Joey…sometimes you rock. 😉


  32. Hah, okay, I’ll give you that. I admit, I go into these movies with comic-colored glasses and whereas most comics fans might say they’re doing it wrong (see most fans of the Watchmen graphic novel versus the movie), I’m more likely to give them all props for touching on random comic lines (for example, I was very excited when in Avengers Tony mentioned “life model decoy”).

    I am keeping my fingers crossed for you guys on Dark Matter! Mainly out of self-interest. 😉 There’s no good sci-fi airing anymore and I miss it.

  33. @But hopefully it all comes together as expected. And, once it does, dare I say it…

    Better to not jinx it Joe.

    Obviously if you get the greenlight for your Dark Matter stuff, then Hurray, celebration!

  34. Hi, I just thought I’d let you know that Stargate helped me get though a very difficult breakup, to spare all the details we shared friends and they all took her side and I lost them all. If it wasn’t for stargate I wouldn’t have been able to get through school and complete my exams. Now I am in an amazing job and just turned the legal age for a tattoo and as the main reason I got though such a hard point in my life was stargate, in particularly SGU I wanted to get something to remember that. I was thinking about having Destinys ancient name but I cant find it anywhere would you please be able to help me. The closest thing I have found is destinatio which is the Latin. Please help id like to honour what helped me.

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