Archive for September, 2007


I had seen this video on the Trekmovie.com and thought this was creative and brilliantly sung. I do have one small bone to pick with season 2 where Q Who as listed the season finale. The correct episode should have been Shades of Grey but for the sake of the song, Shades of Grey does not rhyme with Season 2. For that, I understand and forgive. Nonetheless, I had recently seen all ST:TNG episode recently on dvd and forgot how incredibly well done this series was produced. All main characters of the show except for Beverly Crusher actually grew beyond their original roles.

This led me to think about the past 20 years of my own life; which is half my life ago. When I saw my first live ST:TNG episode, I knew that this was my Star Trek. Another way to explain this is if you are a James Bond fan, who was the Bond that you grew up with? For me, Roger Moore was my Bond even though Sean Connery was the first and best one. TNG started me off on the love of scifi women. Tasha Yar by far won me over Deanna Troi and Beverly Crusher.

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This is not to say they weren’t attractive but rather, Tasha can kick your ass without breaking a sweat and you would like it. I did feel sad when she past away on the Skin of Evil episode. Even more important were two things that happened as a result of this episode: first, I really developed my love of reading for pleasure and two, I started to work on my screenwriting career all because of Star Trek: TNG.

First off, reading for me, for the mere pleasure, had never had an appeal to me despite being drawn to two books in high school – Ethan Frome and MacBeth. After then, I hardly read anything until TNG aired. I think, either during or after season 1, Pocket Books started to publish TNG books. The first one I completed was the Children of Hamlin from cover to cover. I picked this one because it had Tasha in it. I couldn’t believe how well my imagination was fired up from reading this story. I needed to get my TNG fix more than just once a week and with the books, I could take my TNG family everywhere I go. After a few novels, I started to get the bug to write.

This was another area in my life where I could not write to save my life especially my brief time in Brooklyn College. About 1989 – 1990, I started to work for a table top commercial film production company as a studio manager. There was where I met my mentor – Maryann. While there was about a 15 year between us, I found her to be a striking older woman who love both series of Trek; TOS and TNG. I really fell for her from a distance but Star Trek brought us together as friends. She encouraged me to write for an amauter fan magazine since I really had a passion for these characters. Roberta Rogow was the editor and publisher of GRIP fanzine who I met at scifi convention with the two captain Patrick Stewart and William Shatner. As such, I submitted a brief vignette scene between Worf and his Alexander saying goodbye just before Alexander staying with Worf’s human parents. I was pleased by the results as Roberta found an artist to illustrate this piece. When I saw the final result of my printed work, I knew I wanted to do more with my writing. I did another piece which was much longer but dealt with the after effects of Geordi’s kidnapping from the Romulans. Once more, I was published but I still wanted more. This was when word got out that DS9 was the next Trek spinoff series.

All that I knew at that time was a Captain who fought at Wolf 359 and was manning a space station. This was my opportunity to get closer to my mentor and we wrote a screenplay of what DS9 should have been. One of the things I am most proud of was a shapeshifting character I created called Taba which we now know as Odo. The difference he was that Taba loved to change shape each new experience he encountered. Basically he wanted to be anything and everthing but himself. There was a side of Taba I wanted to explore since I was going through a tough time in my love life or lack thereof. Maryann and I knew that the script was not going anywhere but we still registered it with the Writer’s Guild. This was a great excersice in learning how to write. Shortly thereafter, I moved down to Miami where my parents moved down a year earlier. I was getting tired of New York, my old friends were moving on or getting married, and my then ex-fiance was truly gone from my life.

As I started my new life in Miami, I was able to get work at the very first Border Books and Cafe in Florida. There I met a great friend named Rudy who helped me reshape my script I wrote with Maryann to more acceptable version. The story dealt with Hugh and the Borg takling control of DS9 and where waiting for their god. The god was the V’ger/Decker entity who transformed the Borg to be a more organic lifeform on the outside and yet still machine on the inside. Basically, the Borg were flawed and off the track of their evolution. This script was then submitted to Paramount Studios. While I did get a rejection letter, I was very proud of this accomplishment nontheless. I wanted to continue writing with Voyager and Enterprise but the fan submission policy was closed for good.

While I did not want to give up writing, I did create my fanzine called Cloud Minders. This title was from the TOS episode called oddly enough The Cloud Minders. I had several co-workers submit their artwork and stories from various genres. This was a labor of love since my tools were limited as I used Word, Pagemaker, and a copy machine. The magazine came to over a 100 pages – double sided. This proved to be the one an only issue I published. I have kept up with my writing by submitting letters to Starlog about my hatred for SeaQuest. The last letter published was in the Star Trek Communicator Magazine near the end of its publication on why Enterprise was bad.

After Enterprise went off the air, I had been looking for ways to continue be creative and having an outlet for my work. I had a blog and website on yahoo which was okay but received little attention. Podcasting was another venture I started in 2006. After 3 shows, my laptop was stolen and all the data and music was gone this year. I started blogging on wordpress in late July after I went to a Library 2.0 seminar. I am still trying to incorporate future podcasts into my blog. Anyone like to share how to do this?

I do have an eagerness to delve into writing screenplays and get caught in the fun in creating the plot, story, character development and make it all work. As time progresses, if I start to pursue this, I want to document the process and the journey on my blog and make this a full time career. I still haven’t given up my dreams. I just believe that all these experiences and interactions throughout my life has help me to develop a good sense of structure in my life. Now, it’s time to put dreams into motion and even if I don’t make it, at least I’ll have fun trying. 


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Let me start by saying that DIRECTV is cheaper that cable but DAMMIT, when it rains or really, really windy I can’t get a signal. I had to work until till 9pm so I set up my VCR, yes I am still using videotapes, to record the show. I get about 1/2 through the show and I see nothing but I still hear the audio part of the show. Frak!!! I had to wait until today and watch it online from NBC.COM which was a really nice benefit to its viewers. But for GODS sake, no more Target commercials. That damn “Hello Goodbye” jingle has become an ear worm and I can’t it out of my head.

**** MAJOR SPOILERS ****

Several months back when I heard their would be a new Bionic Woman series, I couldn’t help to remember my endless days watch the original Bionic Woman played by Lindsay Wagner. Her carefree fashion statements mixed with the summer wind in her hair; she was and still really something to look at. Ah, the 70’s where we only had 13 channels, had knobs on our TV and no remote; good times. Fast forward 30 years later and we get a much darker retelling of this classic series. Michelle Ryan being an unknown in the states plays a likeable Jamie Sommers with new changes such as the old version Jamie was a tennis player and now she tends a bar and has a little sister. There is no Oscar Goldman, Dr. Rudy Wells, or even Steve Austin himself. We get Jonas Bledsoe played by Miguel Ferrer and the doctor and boyfriend are rolled into one as Will Anthros played by Chris Bowers.

The Good

Right off the bat, the cast of the show is really cool. We have our first suedo Fembot with Katee Sackhoff who thankfully keeps her face intact when she has her big fight scene with Michelle. (A side not, she looked incredible in the bar.) Two other BSG alumni are Aaron (Chief Tyrol) Douglass in a cameo and Mark (Romo Lampkin) Sheppard who appears to have a larger role in the series down the road.

The update effects from the bionics are great eye candy. For example, Jamie’s first use of optic eye, we get her pov with a split screen of normal and bionic vision. Another update would be the use of enhanced and realistic bionic running. Unlike the slow motion the old series used which lengthen the running action, the new Jamie can really run more like the Flash. I will admit that I liked the little homage to the first Superman movie. The scene where Jamie is running through the woods was seen by a little girl in truck driving on the road. The scene mirrors a scene from the first Superman movie where young Clark Kent is running next to a speeding train. The only person on the train to see this is a young Lois Lane. The running effects in the movie were really bad as the actor was hung by wires but for the time, this was the best the could manage.

The Bad

I didn’t care about the scene where Jamie is testing out her new legs by jumping between buildings. One, seeing this reminds me of Peter Parker in the first Spiderman trying out his powers on the rooftop. Was her psyche at the off kilter or did her boyfriend tell her over the phone, “Hey, did you know you can jump really far between buildings? Why don’t you give it a try and let me know how it turns out.” No, I don’t think so. The only reason for this scene was to foreshadow her leaping ability to fight Sarah (Sackhoff) between buildings. A more gradual course of action for Jamie to show her new abilities was when Jamie was outside a club looking for Sarah. Alone in an alley, a potential mugger threatens Jamie with a knife. We see from Jamie’s pov the normal and bionic split vision once more. When the mugger attacks, Jamie is able to takedown the mugger with her bionic arm. This makes more sense to show rather the extreme jumping between buildings as Jamie is taken aback by her aggressive actions.

Another point to consider is the relationship between Jamie and Will. Before the fight with Sarah, Jamie becomes intimate with Will who earlier performed the bionic surgery. Jamie does comment that her arm is not her and one would conclude that she is now different and will never be the same woman as before. She should have had more resentment of Will and played off this feeling rather than sleeping with him. Will did what he had to do because he bear to lose her and in turn, Jamie should have rejected him flatly; end of story.

Overall

There is enough storyline and plot that can be explored in this new series that can make this a worthwhile series. For GODS sake, no Max the bionic dog.


As reported on TunaFlix.com, Jessica Biel seems to be in the lead for the Wonder Woman role in the upcoming JLA movie. Jessica has really proven to be a great with action as seen in Blade 3 as well as giving strong performances as seen in The Illusionists. I really believe that Jessica can pull this off but the question lies about how much screentime will be given to the ensemble cast? The only thing that I extremely happy about is that George Miller will be directing this.

09/29/07

RE: It appears this is point is now moot. Entertainment Weekly has reported this is no longer any option to see Jessica as Wonder Woman. Read more here


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**** MAJOR SPOILERS ****

I want to say that this was Owen’s episode to really standout from the pack and be more than the comic relief. When Owen gets a hold of the Ghost Machine, the alien device, he gets transported to the scene above where a murder is about to take place. Owen couldn’t help Lizzie, the women in question, but wants to find Ed Morgan, the killer, in the present. So why the obsession to get Ed? I could argue that something in his past triggered this in him but this is all speculation. This is a big mistake by not revealing something about Owen to the audience as to his motivation. As with many scifi shows with an ensemble cast, there has to be spotlight episodes in which the story focuses on one character. From that point on, we as an audience can know or expect how a particular character will encounter future situations. For example, on ST:TNG Worf is a Klingon and when he was made head of security you knew that any encounter out of the ordinary, security of the ship was his main concern even if he always wanted to fire first and ask questions later. With Owen, I’m still not clear to his metaphoric role, is he the heart, the brain, the soul of Torchwood? In the commercial break, there was a brief tidbit about how Owen will open up throughout the season. I’ll give it the chance to explore this area.

Another disappointment is with Gwen on two points. First, am I missing something or is Gwen not a police officer? Do the British police force not train their officers in using firearms? A nice moment to watch was when  Captain Jack offered a personal firearm training to Gwen. The close contact was apparent on both parties which helped to bring the relationship closer even on a platonic level. However, since all the firearms were traditional guns and bullets, how does this provide a defense against the aliens or the unknown creatures? At least in MIB, Agent J was trained in using alien firearm to fight against alien villains. Why is Torchwood not up to speed in upgrading their weaponry?

The second point has to do with Gwen taking the Ghost Machine home. Doesn’t anybody ever listen to Jack or at least perform a bag check as they leave Torchwood for the evening? Jack has made this an issue in the past two shows and yet nothing is said here. This is becoming an issue with me only because logic would dictate within this realm that if the leader of a team gives an order, the rest of the team should fall in step. I hope this point is fixed on future shows.

Overall, this was not one of the better shows for Torchwood. This lack any growth of the characters except for Jack who we find out doesn’t sleep and is alone. I’m still not giving up this show just yet.


  

**** MAJOR SPOILERS ****

Like with most of season 1 episodes of Heroes, the show’s pacing can be slower than a snail’s pace. However, fans of the show will always be rewarded with some tidbit or golden gem to keep the story going. The 2nd season premiere has not changed course in its story structure in interweaving many storylines at the same time. As always, Hiro steals the show anytime he is on. This leads to more confident that season 2 will remain true to itself without having to jump the shark?

Last night’s show literally brought everyone back except for Niki/Jessica, Micah, and D.L.. In their place, were two new characters: Maya and Alejandro. We see them trying to make their way from Mexico to the United States. Along the way, they meet illegal alien smugglers who double cross them and separate them from traveling together. Maya cries out that they were making a mistake and boy, was she right. The only thing that was missing from this scene was hearing this line, “Confíeme en, Sr. McGee, usted no me quisiera cuando consigo enojado.” I leave it up to you to translate but the name is a dead giveaway. Alejandro catches up with the truck with everyone dead including the traveling illegals. From what we can gather is that Maya has some type of super strength like Niki/Jessica.

The best storyline was with Hiro and meeting his hero, Takezo Sensei. The great surprise is two-fold for me. First, Takezo is an Englishman and second, the actor is David Anders. Since I am an Alias fans, I loved how well Anders played a great villain named Julian Sark. Right off the bat, Takezo is not the hero Hiro was told about. Nonetheless, Hiro had one of the funniest scenes with Takezo where he had to urinated. Once he was done, he grabs Hiro who is totally grossed out that Takezo did not wash his hands. Another great part to Hiro’s storyline is the introduction to Yaeko. She almost steals the scene with her presence. From what I read, this will be Hiro’s love interest supposedly. I really want more Hiro screen time or better yet, make Journeyman the new series for Hiro.

Other story tie ups from season 1, we see Parkman alive and now a police detective. Despite accomplishing his dream, we find out that he is going through a divorce. I really didn’t like his ex-wife since she had cheated on Parkman but the question still lies about the birth of their child. Will Parkman’s child his special mind reading abilities, any abilities, or none at all? Parkman did have a few good scenes with Molly from which we can conclude, he is not only her protector but surrogate father to her.

The Bennett family, Claire, Lyle, Sandra, Noah and even Mr. Muggles have made their adjustments to normalcy, sort of. I loved how Noah tells Claire not to make any waves to get noticed and yet, he man handles his younger boss at Copy Kingdom because of the bad treatment he was receiving. At least Claire had enough sense to not perform her cheerleader back flip in front of the gym class. My question is how can they afford to live in their new place on a Noah’s Copy Kingdom salary? If Chuck get paid $11 per hour at Buy More, Copy Kingdom can’t be paying that high especially since Noah is not even a manager. Hmmm.

The biggest surprise at the end was the death of Hiro’s father Kaito. Kaito was telling the mysterious stranger that he didn’t expect him of all people to kill him. I don’t want to assume but it to be Sylar as we have seen him before in shadow. What is interesting is how Kaito and Sylar and Nathan and Peter’s mother Angela interconnected? Speaking of Nathan, we see him bumping into Ando during the course of the story. I’m not sure if he blames himself for the death of Peter or for the fact that Peter is alive in a cargo crate somewhere in Ireland. According to IMDB.COM, Peter is to meet a new character named Blackie, the Irish mobster, who is over a 1,000 year old. Was that the character who ask Peter who he was?

Overall, I am pleasantly surprised and rewarded with quality acting and story pacing. Once again, I am hooked for more Heroes but I wonder if there will be too much Heroes. We have this season underway and then Heroes: Origins in 2008. Are they dipping into the well too much?