August 23, 2019: Whirlwind Day!

This morning it was work, workout, and walkies.  Then, taco lunch with friends followed by chocolate chip cookies, chocolate-covered pistachio gelato bars and…

Fan Expo!

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These aren’t the droids you’re looking for.

The Green Room.

Somebody help me move this bar cart into the lobby.

This kid’s a natural!

Then, it was another round of walkies and dinner…

Note the Gudetama theme.

And, finally, it was a brief walk over to SOMA Chocolates for…what else?

Oh, and pistachio gelato.

I capped off my day with more walkies…and work.

BIG upset today in our Stargate: SG-1 Greatest Episode Tournament!  

I honestly thought Abyss was positioned to take it all.  But #14th seeded The Pegasus Project had other plans!

The tourney continues and, once again, the underdog is ahead…but not by much!  Click on the link or head on over to twitter and vote!

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August 20, 2019: The Stargate SG-1 Greatest Episode Tournament is underway!

11 hours in to our 24 hour poll and Window of Opportunity is showing why it is the #1 seed in the tournament, opening up a huge lead over its opponent in this round, Urgo.  

If you haven’t voted yet, click the link or head on over to twitter and cast your ballot.

Tomorrow, #2 seed The Fifth Race faces off against surprising #15 seed Solitudes.  I have a feeling this one’s going to be much closer.  Could there be an upset in the making?

I’m thinking that, once we get down to our Final Four, we should do a mass fan re-watch of our semi-finalists.  What do you think?

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Lately on twitter, I’ve avoided all of the political discourse in favor of the far more heated debate on fried chicken sandwiches that has pitted Wendy’s and Popeye’s in online battle.  Coincidentally, two weeks, Business Insider taste-tested fried chicken sandwiches from eight different fast-food chains, and THIS WAS THE RESULT.

I am…unconvinced.  So much so that I think I’m going to do my own taste-testing of the eight candidates.  Maybe sometime next week?  Who’s in?!

Another big story today is the news that Disney and Sony couldn’t agree on a deal, thus putting Spider-Man on the outs in the MCU.  Frustrating for longtime fans, yes, but there’s a silver lining in that this opens the door to the long-overlooked Japanese Spider-Man from the 1970’s.  I mean, who doesn’t remember THIS – ?

No?  Are you sure?  Come on, have some respect.  He fought a transformer!

Lately, I’ve been a little…exhausted.  I’ve been averaging about four hours of sleep a night and have now resorted to sipping chamomile tea before bedtime.  I’ve cut out my afternoon espresso zabaglione and keep my melatonin pills handy.  And still, it takes me forever to fall asleep – only to not stay asleep for long.  So, what sure-fire remedies would you all suggest for sleeplessness?  

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August 19, 2019: The Stargate: SG-1 Greatest Episode Tournament is set!

We have our last two contestants.  The field is set.  Here are your first round match-ups:

#16 Urgo vs #1 Window of Opportunity

The hottest episode coming into the tournament, Urgo rides a write-in vote and upset victory in the playoff round to capture the last seed.  But it has a tough first round match-up against Window of Opportunity, a perennial Top 5 favorite that sailed into the tourney on the strength of a commanding seasonal win that saw it garner 71% of the vote.

#15 Solitudes vs #2 The Fifth Race

Shippers, rejoice!  The Sam and Jack-centered Solitudes defied the odds and secured one of the last playoff spots as a late wild-card.  But it’s going to have its work cut out for it up against one of show’s seminal episodes.  Will The Fifth Race, another longtime Top 5 favorite, secure the victory or are things going to get cruvis?

#14 The Pegasus Project vs #3 Abyss

Two of Brad Wright’s best SG-1 episodes go head to head.  On the one hand, you’ve got that much-anticipated SG-1/Atlantis crossover; on the other, there’s Jack and Daniel and, also, Ba’al at his nefarious finest.  Still, Abyss may be the odds-on favorite to not only advance, but, perhaps, win it all.

#13 Threads vs #4 Moebius Part 2

Coincidentally, two of the episodes that wrap-up the Jack O’Neil era of SG-1 face off here in first round action.  Which one will have the final word in the tourney remains to be seen, but if there was any match-up that was primed for an upset, this would be it.

#12 Heroes Part 2 vs #5 200

One of the saddest episodes of the franchise’s 17 season run goes up against, arguably, one of its finest as fans are asked to choose between the poignant death of Janet Fraiser or puppets and invisible Jack.

#11 1969 vs #6 Lost City Part 2

The more humorous episodes continue their strong showing in the tourney with time travel romp 1969.  But it is up against an enormously significant episode, rich with mythology – and boasting one of the greatest space ship skirmishes in franchise history: the Battle of Antarctica.

#10 Children of the Gods vs #7 2001

It’s the one that started it all vs. the encounter that may have ended it all via a massive bio attack.  Although 2001 is the higher seed, Children of the Gods is in a great position to pull the upset here.

#9 Foothold vs #8 Ripple Effect

Two classic sci-fi concepts – alien invasion and alternate universes – go head to head in our final first round match-up.    Foothold was the surprise winner of the season 3 poll, edging out Nemesis by a mere 1% of the vote while Ripple Effect eked out a somewhat easier win (by 3% of the vote) over Camelot in its seasonal match-up.  Both episodes are a lot of fun and clearly have a lot of fans – but it’s the end of the road for one of them here.

The Stargate: SG-1 Greatest Episode Tournament kicks off tomorrow.  Follow me on twitter (@BaronDestructo) for the latest – and don’t forget to vote!

Finally, while we’re on the subject of Stargate, I hear that Ben Browder’s latest movie, Hoax, is being released tomorrow and is now available for pre-order on iTunes and Epic Film’s Dread Central.  Check out the trailer.

 

August 16, 2019: Here are (most of) the episodes that will be squaring off in the Stargate: SG-1 Best Episode Tournament!

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Here are the Top 10 Seeds (as decided by you, the fans) in next week’s Stargate: SG-1 Best Episode Tournament:

#1 – Window of Opportunity

#2 – The Fifth Race

#3 – Abyss

#4 – Moebius Part 2

#5 – 200

#6 – Lost City Part 2

#7 – 2001

#8 – Ripple Effect 

#9 – Foothold

#10 – Children of the Gods

Each of the above received the most votes in their respective seasons.  Seedings are based on overall votes received as well as percentage of overall votes cast.  

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And here are the first 4 (of our 6) wildcard entries –

#11 – 1969

#12 – Heroes Part 2

#13 – Threads

#14 – The Pegasus Project

Each of the above did not win their respective seasons but garnered enough votes (and a big enough percentage of the overall votes) to earn their spots as wildcard entries.

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Which leaves only TWO spots for the remaining 8 episodes (either strong write-in candidates or those that received a significant number of votes or percentage of the overall vote for their respective season) :

GROUP A will duke it out in tomorrow’s poll which will pit:

Nemesis vs Lifeboat vs Torment of Tantalus vs Solitudes for the second to last wildcard spot!

GROUP B will face off on Sunday’s poll which will pit:

Full Circle vs Urgo vs Camelot vs Meridian for the last wildcard spot!

At which point, our final 16 tournament teams will be set!

Follow me on twitter @BaronDestructo for the latest tournament news!  

And don’t forget to vote!

August 8, 2019: It’s the Stargate’s Greatest Episode Tournament (Qualifying Rounds)!

August-8-2019

Early evening sound design meeting for Utopia Falls’ first episode tonight.  Things are moving fast!

Hey, over on twitter, I’m doing daily polls to find out what the fans felt were the BEST episodes of each season of Stargate.  We are presently through the first three seasons and, so far, these are the results:

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No surprise to see Children of the Gods taking the first season crown although my vote would have gone to There But For the Grace of God.  Solitudes got some heavy write-in votes that put it in contention for a wildcard spot.  And no surprise to see The Fifth Race win for season 2 – but will 1969’s voter support give it a wildcard spot in the next round?  Finally, in a surprise result, Foothold wins a close shave victory of Nemesis, while Urgo gets plenty of fan write-in love.

The 10 winning episode (1 from each season) will be joined by 6 wildcard episodes after which the 16 will face off in our Stargate: SG-1’s Greatest Episode Tournament!  Head on over to twitter and follow me, @BaronDestructo, for tomorrow’s Season 4 Best Episode poll.  Who will our four contenders be?

 

August 6, 2019: Dark Matter – All the loose ends we want tied up!

This article was brought to my attention today: 

August-6-2019

Dark Matter: All the loose ends we want tied up

“Watching the closing moments of Dark Matter was a little like taking a book out of the library and finding out some colossal douchenugget had torn out the last chapter.”

Well, yes.  That WAS more or less it.  

Lucas Hill-Paul, the writer of the article, lists the following loose ends.

August-6-2019

The Black Ships

“An imposing fleet, their arrival promised an exciting new threat for season 4. Sadly, we’ll never get to see who or what were in the pilot seats.”

One of the biggest builds planned for the show’s fourth was the interior of one of these black ships as a mid-season episode would have seen our crew, under the direction of the Galactic Authority, teaming with a Stellar Defense Corps special forces unit (including black ops specialist Solara Shockley) to infiltrate and take out one of the enemy ships as it drains/draws immense power from a nearby star.  THAT episode would have given us a sneak peek inside the black ships – and a confirmed visual on the invaders.

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Aliens

The aliens were actually introduced back in season 2 (“Going Out Fighting”) when THREE became host to one.  They made another appearance in season 3 when the crew stumbled upon a secret Dwarf Star facility containing an army of bio-synthetic beings – as well as a gateway to…somewhere else.

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TWO is compromised

TWO is compromised by one of the aforementioned aliens and takes out our Android – only to be taken down, in turn, by Ryo Ishida.  If you’d like to find out what lay ahead for TWO, check out the –

Virtual Season 4 – Episode 4.01

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SIX is dead?

Say it isn’t so!  Was that really a Goodbye Forever hug he shared with FIVE in the the final moments of the season 3 finale?  For the answer to that, I once against direct you to…  

Virtual Season 4 – Episode 4.01

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Sarah

And what of Sarah, THREE’s former love?  When last we saw her, her consciousness had been uploaded to an android body.  Well, the plan was to see her rise to prominence within the leadership of the android liberation movement – but a series of events would eventually lead to a schism, an internal power struggle, and Sarah’s accession as our Big Bad for the show’s fifth and final season.

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The Android’s Future

Late in season 3’s fourth episode, All the Time in the World, Android does a little time-skipping and experiences future flashes of herself: being stunned by THREE on the bridge (revealed, in a later episode, to actually be our AU Marcus Boone), in the mess with TWO grieving the loss of someone closer to her (planned for season 4), disassembled on an operating table (another season 4 story), and, finally, on the bridge of the Raza where she encounters a much older FIVE who offers her a few predictions.  She cites: the Dwarf Star conspiracy (that we begin to unravel later in season 3’s eleventh episode, the appropriately titled “The Dwarf Star Conspiracy”), the doubled deception (a hint at a late season 5 turn), Kryden (we are introduced to Kryden in the first episode of the show’s fourth season – see above), Carina (FIVE’s long lost sister introduced in our virtual season 4 episode here, here and here), the Accelerated (season 5!), the fall of the House of Ishida (witnessed later in season 3’s “My Final Gift To You”), “A meeting with your creator” (Episode 310, “Built, Not Born”), and the Black Ships (we glimpse in the season 3 finale).

It’s frustrating – like knowing a huge secret but not being able to divulge to anyone.

Anyway, stay tuned.  Dark Matter season 4’s fourth virtual episode will drop in the coming weeks – and it’s a terrific time travel tale scripted by none other than Stargate’s very own Carl Binder! 

[And a huge thanks to Tom Gardiner for all the awesome gifs!]

August 5, 2019: That special Stargate scene!

As part of last month’s SDCC Stargate: Atlantis panel, attendees were treated to a reading of select scenes from the unproduced Stargate: Extinction movie.  But since actress Torri Higginson was in attendance, I decided to include an original scene for the occasion, a scene that perhaps could have been canon had the show continued past its fifth season finale.  For those of you who weren’t there to witness the live reading, HERE is that scene…

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August 3, 2019: My Stargate way of thinking!

Whenever someone asks me about the likelihood of a new Stargate series gracing our screens, my response is always: “It’s not a matter of if, but when”.  Now people assume I must have some insider knowledge, but the truth is I know about as much as any of you do about what MGM has planned for the franchise.  But simple logic dictates a few things:

1 – Stargate WILL return in some form, in all likelihood a television series.

The original Stargate movie did respectable box office, but it was the television series that really blew the doors off the vault.  Stargate, in its television form, made the studio a TON of money.  Certainly a hell of a lot more than many of the franchises and IP’s that have found new life on the big and small screen of late.  And yet, we’re still waiting. 

Look, Stargate is an incredibly lucrative property and it just doesn’t make sense for the studio NOT to revisit its greatest television success story.  At the end of the day, the entertainment industry is a business and decisions are based on the bottom line.  And when it comes to Stargate’s bottom line, we’re talking a lot of dollar signs.  

2 – The studio is being VERY cautious about launching a new series.

Given the immense value of the franchise, the studio wants to get it right.  They want to be certain that the show they launch will appeal to a huge viewership.  Thus, they are faced with a little dilemma – although, really, it’s not a dilemma at all if you really think about it.  The studio, no doubt, feels caught between established fandom and new viewers, incorrectly assuming that it’s either one or the other.  IF they launch a show within the established t.v. universe, they assume they’ll simply be appealing to old fans while leaving new viewers out in the cold.  IF, on the other hand, they reboot the series and dismiss the existing t.v. canon, they face the prospect of an angry fanbase that will, in all probability, not only ignore the new series but actively campaign against it.  So, what’s a studio to do?

EASY.  Launch a new series that offers the best of both worlds – one that exists within the established t.v. universe but offers a fresh start for first-time viewers.  The new series could introduce us to new characters, a new team, who know nothing about Stargates – and we, as the audience, could join them on their journey of discovery.  It’s been some 15 years since the last episode of Stargate aired.  Who doesn’t need a refresher? 

The new series wouldn’t be as mythologically heavy as previous incarnations, yet – amidst the action, adventure, humor, and exploration – nevertheless offer up a little backstory on the Stargate program.  Characters from the previous shows could make an appearance, but they would be introduced as though for the first time – and while new viewers will get to know them, longtime fans will get reacquainted with these beloved characters all over again.  

3. The old guard should be at the helm of the new series.

So, who do you think will be playing quarterback for the New England Patriots this season?  Will it be 536 career TD, 6 time Superbowl champ Tom Brady?  Will it be an unproven rookie?  Or will the Patriots try to lure Brett Favre out of retirement?  The incorrect answer could not only cost the team their season, but have terrible repercussions for years to come. 

So, who created and ran the highly successful Stargate television shows that spanned  15 years, 17 seasons, 334 episodes, 2 movies and made the studio hundreds of millions of dollars?  THAT is who you want running the new series – someone who has not only proven themselves, but can craft that bridge between the established fandom and new viewers, the beloved classic Stargate and a fresh, bold new direction.

4.  Soon, soon.

I know, I know.  It’s all so screamingly obvious – yet I have no doubt the studio will get there.  They just need to get their ducks in a row, dot those I’s, cross those T’s, and complete whatever cliched idioms one needs to complete in order to get everyone on board.  A simple meeting with all the suits would do the trick.  Pack all the decision-makers into a conference room, then use an overhead projector to cast an image of how much money the Stargate television franchise made over the years.  Then, quickly, before anyone’s mind can wander, switch out that huge bottom line number with the Created by credits for the Stargate t.v. shows.  Alternate quickly back and forth between the two to ensure all in attendance make the painfully clear connection. 

They’ll get there sooner than later.

Meanwhile, how many new Star Trek shows will be on the air by year’s end?  

July 25, 2019: The waiting is the hardest part!

People (Generally, those not in the industry) react with amazement when they find out I’m juggling multiple development projects.  I’m sure they imagine me working 24/7, going from one project to the next, with little room for rest.  Sadly, however, this couldn’t be further from the truth.  Much of “development” is waiting.

Read more

July 4, 2019: Super Secret Projects Revealed!

Finally.

Over the course of the past few months, I’ve been making vague references to a total of SEVEN different projects I’m currently work on, all in varying stages of development.  There’s that comic book adaptation and that horror novel adaptation and my (formerly) Untitled Awesome Project and that small-town horror and that BIG comic project and that other original comic book series and the near-future sci-fi.

Well, today, I can actually start referring to the first three by name as they were mentioned in a recent article for Playback magazine authored by the amazing Kelly Townsend, a piece that profiles former Dark Matter/Lost Girl Producer Vanessa Piazza’s upcoming development slate.  Among the projects are no less than THREE with yours truly…

That comic book adaptation…

July 4, 2019: Super Secret Projects Revealed!

Crosswind by Gail Simone and Cat Staggs

A slick and ruthless Chicago hitman. A smart but downtrodden Seattle housewife. When an inexplicable event strikes these two random strangers, their bodies, souls, and lives are switched—to potentially deadly effect.

As a longtime fan of Gail Simone, I was positively thrilled to be presented with the opportunity to collaborate with her on this, one of my very favorite of her originals.  It’s a terrific high-concept, character-driven series that offers not only suspense, action, and humor, but a provocative and thought-provoking narrative.

You can get the book here: Crosswind at Comixology

That horror novel adaptation…

July 4, 2019: Super Secret Projects Revealed!

Little Heaven by Nick Cutter

A trio of mismatched mercenaries—Micah Shughrue, Minerva Atwater, and Ebenzer Elkins, colloquially known as “the Englishman”—is hired by young Ellen Bellhaven for a deceptively simple task: check in on her nephew, who may have been taken against his will to a remote New Mexico backwoods settlement called Little Heaven, where a clandestine religious cult holds sway. But shortly after they arrive, things begin to turn ominous. There are stirrings in the woods and over the treetops—and above all else, the brooding shape of a monolith known as the Black Rock casts its terrible pall. Paranoia and distrust soon grip the settlement. Escape routes are gradually cut off as events spiral toward madness. Hell—or the closest thing to it—invades Little Heaven. All present here are now forced to take a stand and fight back, but whatever has cast its dark eye on Little Heaven is marshaling its power—and it wants them all…

Five years ago, I picked up a novel called The Troop because I liked the cover blurb.  I started reading and was immediately drawn in.  The writing was exceptional.  So exceptional, in fact, that I was confused.  This random horror novel I’d picked up, written by an author I’d never even heard of, had no business being this good.  I’m talking Top 10 horror novels of all time good.  So I went ahead, did a little research, and discovered Nick Cutter is actually a pseudonym for award-winning Canadian author Craig Davidson.

I read and loved his (Cutter’s) next book, The Deep, and the one after that, Little Heaven.  The latter, I thought, would make a great series along the lines of The Haunting of Hill House or Castle Rock.  So I reached out to Craig and, over a beer or two, gauged his interest in collaborating on an adaptation.  Approximately one year later, here we are.

You can get the book here: Little Heaven at Amazon

And finally, my (formerly) Untitled Awesome Project that actually now HAS a title…

July 4, 2019: Super Secret Projects Revealed!

Yes!  In the spirit of the time travel-themed episodes I have written (SG-1‘s Window of Opportunity and Moebius Part 1, SGA‘s The Last Man, and Dark Matter‘s All the Time in the World and Isn’t That A Paradox?) comes this series which, a lot like Stargate and Dark Matter (and, quite frankly, Star Trek, Farscape, and Guardians of the Galaxy) is – at it’s heart – all about camaraderie, friendship, and family.  And, also, VERY colorful characters.

It’s Guardians of the Galaxy meets Dr. Who by way of Back To The Future .

And an insane amount of sci-fi fun.

So, there you have it.

I’ll hopefully have more details on these, and the other projects I’ve been working on, in the coming months.

Discuss!

July 1, 2019: Hallucinatory Wraith Feeding!

Came across this little gem on one of my old hard-drives – what appears to be footage from an extended hallucinatory wraith feeding sequence.  It’s actually surprisingly disquieting.  Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to name the episode.

I celebrated Canada Day by completing my latest (and last?) revision on that big comic book pitch.  I’ll give it a once-over tomorrow with a set of fresh eyes, then send it off for the final stamp of approval.  Or further discussion prior to further discussion prior to further discussion before final approval.

Also this week, I’m hoping to get some feedback on the second draft of the pilot for my Untitled Awesome Project.

And, of course, I’m looking forward to four days on location shooting Utopia Falls.  Fortunately, only the final three days are outdoors.  Unfortunately, those are the only days this week in which rain is in the forecast.

Finally, about a week out from wrap, I’m looking ahead to my next big move – and have decided a little house cleaning may be in order…

June 22, 2019: Dark Matter deleted scene – Episode 212 “Sometimes in Life You Don’t Get to Choose”

FOUR has restored his memories and, as Ryo Ishida, plots against the throne of Zairon with the help of Hiro, his half-brother.  The change in him has not sat well with the rest of the crew, especially Nyx.  In this scene (directed by series stunt coordinator John Stead and, sadly, cut for time) she and TWO discuss the recent disconcerting developments…