Posts Tagged ‘Stargate’

4 Good Entry Points to Big Franchises–Friday Four

Guardian of ForeverFor those still developing a taste for sci-fi, the prospect of jumping into a major franchise can be an understandably daunting one. With some of them having literal weeks worth of footage accumulated, it’s hard for a newcomer to know where to start. The beginning would seem to be the obvious answer, but that’s not always the case, especially with the numerous shows that suffered through low quality in their early days. Sometimes it can just end up turning you off a show that you might otherwise love; I know I personally had a hard time getting into both Babylon 5 and Stargate when starting from the beginning, but was able to try again with later episodes and really dig in. Other shows have just been running so long that early installments can be hard to watch with how dated they are, something a pre-existing investment in the show can help to counter. The best way, often enough, is to find a so-called “gateway episode,” one that’s enticing enough on its own to pique a viewer’s curiosity into continuing on their own.

So if you’ve found your way here and are wondering how to try out a big franchise, or if you’ve got a friend or loved one you’re eager to convince to watch with you, here are 4 big franchises and the episodes that I personally feel are perfect for introducing people to them.

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4 Clues That Your Alien Predecessors Are Guilty of Abuse–Friday Four

PhoenixIf you’re a member of a relatively young race, just emerging onto the interstellar scene after discovering some means of traveling faster than light, it’s a big old galaxy out there. Odds are, you’re not the first to go into space. Heck, you might’ve been beaten to the punch by millions of years, by alien species that no longer exist (at least on this plane of reality). The lucky ones will strike out into a galaxy with adventure and hidden treasures around every corner, all set up by their thoughtful predecessors. If you aren’t so lucky, you might find yourself in a galaxy of traps and disasters lying in wait, left behind by those negligent early races… or worse, the situation you’re left with is outright malevolent!

Here’s how you can quickly survey the galaxy and decide what’s in store for you out there among the stars.

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4 of the Most Unusual Aliens on TV–Friday Four

8472One of the things that TV-based sci-fi often gets ragged on for is that the aliens tend to look suspiciously like ordinary humans. Sure, they might have cranial ridges (bumpy foreheads), or extra fingers/less fingers, or maybe even extra eyes or tails. But they’re still two arms, two legs, one head, approximately 5-7 feet tall. This is definitely a limitation of the medium, and there’s no arguing against it. Even as CGI gets cheaper and more realistic, it’s still far too expensive to use as extensively as most viewers and writers would like.

But those restrictions only stand on alien characters or species that have to show up often. When it’s an alien that only has to appear once or twice, however… the sky’s the limit, as these 4 bizarre alien species prove.

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4 Ways Your Trip Through Time Can Go Wrong–Friday Four

Doctor TARDISAre you planning on building a time machine? Or maybe you’re just trying to figure out what to do with the one you’ve already got? Well, you’ve come to the right place, my friend. I have here four of the big mistakes that new time travelers make early in their careers. If you don’t want to return home to a future of Nazi Zombies from Space, or even just get back, excited to share your invention, only to find that no one remembers who you are, then you better read over these sci-fi missteps first.

And for the love of all that exists, DON’T EVEN GO NEAR HITLER!

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4 of the Biggest Unanswered Questions–Friday Four

ParasiteA lot of the time in long-running shows, or even just shows that manage a few seasons, there will be some big things that are brought up, and then never heard from again. Often it’s because the answer would’ve been a huge shakeup for the status quo, but not always. Sometimes it’s just a plot thread that was left hanging in case the writers ever decided they wanted to revisit it. But then the story started to go in a different direction, and it didn’t really make sense any more to dust that idea off and drag it out of the closet. So looking back on the finished shows later, it can become a rather large mystery for the fandoms: what is the deal with this unresolved plot thread?

In that vein, here are 4 big questions raised by series, usually early in their runs, that were never answered.

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4 Character Actors You Didn’t Know You Knew–Friday Four

CantonIn the past, we’ve talked about some weird casting situations, where patterns emerged or unusual relationships between characters and actors (or even whole franchises) appeared. Most of those involved the big names of the show’s cast, the people with their names right after the opening credits. And as important as the main cast can be for a show’s success, it’s often the recurring character who help to give a show its flavor, often coming out of the shadows to emerge as fan favorites. This week, continuing on from our focus on recurring characters in the SHIELD review, we’re going to look at some of the actors whose names aren’t quite so prominently displayed, but whose work you’re probably more familiar with than you realize.

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4 Continuity glitches (and the funny headcanon to fix them)–Friday Four

SG1 S10 TeamSometimes when you’re watching a show, you might notice that there are two bits of the story that don’t quite add up. This is particularly likely when the story arc has been going on for a long time and evolving over the course of the show; things that appeared one way in the beginning were later revealed to be another way, and so on. This tends to result in some complicated continuity, or even outright continuity errors. But just as often, these continuity “errors” can rather easily be fixed with a little explanation provided by the fans, who tend to refer to their personal beliefs about the show as “headcanon.” With that in mind here are some minor continuity problems, and the funny explanations fans use to patch them up.

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4 Genre Shift Episodes–Friday Four

200 SG-1Doing a TV show week to week… well, it can get a little dull. Emergency power to the deflectors, shields to 40%, yadda yadda. So sometimes, the actors like to get a little something to mix it up, and that can be fun for the writers and the audience as well. To see our favorite characters taken outside their typical milieu and placed in a situation where their usual tricks aren’t quite as useful can be quite telling about who they are (or it can be a complete disaster). I mean, that was the whole idea behind introducing the holodeck in Star Trek, after all. It made practically any setting a possibility. But not every show has a holodeck to fall back on when it comes time to do these types of episodes, so here are 4 episodes of sci-fi TV shows where the usual tropes of sci-fi took a week off, leaving us with a different genre all together.

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4 Noteworthy Cameos–Friday Four

Stan LeeCameos can happen for all kinds of reasons. Maybe it’s someone who’s been very important behind the scenes, or in the show’s history, and they wanted to get on screen again (or for the first time, in the former’s case). Just take a look at Stan Lee’s many, many cameos over the years. Or maybe it’s just that all shows have their fans, and sometimes those fans are famous people who can pull the strings to appear on screen. Or perhaps it’s just a notable personality–not necessarily a celebrity in the usual sense, but a politician, or a scientist, or a high ranking military officer in a military-themed project. Here are 4 cameos that hit all those marks, and have a little more to them to boot.

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What Could Have Been: 4 Spinoffs That Never Were–Friday Four

Gary SevenA few weeks ago, we discussed some of the lesser known spinoffs of more popular parent shows. This week, we’ll continue the descent into obscurity with 4 spinoffs that never even made it that far, having died before they even managed to… uh, spin(?) at all, by picking up in the vein of “What Could Have Been.” As they all come from major franchises, it’s interesting to imagine what the consequences of their success might have been. Let’s explore, shall we?

 

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