OTHER SCIENCE FICTION SERIES

The MiniSeries Thread...

POSTED BY: KWICKO
UPDATED: Sunday, September 28, 2008 11:20
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Monday, September 8, 2008 7:48 AM

KWICKO

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." -- William Casey, Reagan's presidential campaign manager & CIA Director (from first staff meeting in 1981)


Okay, so we all have our favorite mini-series, whether they be SciFi or not, right? Let's list 'em and talk 'em up!

My first few (in no particular order):

1) Jekyll (BBC): Do you love watching the Bad Guy glorificate in his evilness, simply luxuriate in the badness that comes from having no conscience whatsoever? Do you watch Hannibal Lecter and think, "Yeah, we could be great friends - as long as he didn't invite me for dinner..."? Do you think Spike it at his best when he's at his worst? Do you secretly prefer Angelus to Angel?

If so, have I got a miniseries for you. Jekyll is a retelling/updating of the famous Doctor Jekyll & Mister Hyde tale from Robert Louis Stevenson. Part conspiracy thriller (think Dark Angel, with government meddling and secret weapons facilities), part pure horror, part whodunit, part psychological thriller, all action. Oh, and the girl who played Jamie Sommers in last year's "Bionic Woman" co-stars.

Not to get all spoilerific, but here's just a taste... In one scene, our hero is walking around London, minding his business, being normal and boring, when a street tough and his girl try to hold him up with a knife. When cornered and under stress, Jekyll undergoes a change - in every part of his being. He quickly disarms the punk, puts him in a headlock, and says, "Fortunately for you, I don't get a lot of enjoyment out of killing children..." - and "SNAP!" goes the kid's neck! "I get enough, though...", and gives a wicked smile to the girlie, who's now on her own.

James Nesbitt is just supremely creepy as Hyde, and just seems so NORMAL as Jekyll. Wonderfull acting job, and he seems like he really enjoys being purely evil.

2) Thief (FX): Andre Braugher stars as a master thief looking for one more big score to get out from under the thumb of various mob folk. When it all starts to go wrong, everyone he knows is at risk. And once again, Braugher does a superd acting job. If you love a good heist story, this one is well worth six hours of your time.

3) The Lost Room (SciFi): Peter Krause stars. There's a room that isn't there, see? And there's stuff in that room that gives certain powers to whomever has the item(s) in their possession. And it's all a giant puzzle that must be figured out before it's too late.

It sounds odd, and it is, but it's also quite good, well-written, and well-acted. You know, almost the polar opposite of most of the original content on SciFi Network!

4) Taken (SciFi): Steven Spielberg was behind this miniseries about three generations of people suffering from alien abduction, three generations of people trying to track the aliens and the abductees down, and the battles they fight over the years. It all starts in Roswell, and carries forward into the present.

If you like it, check out "The 4400" - often referred to (not in a derogatory way) as "Brought Back". As in, "Taken" and "Brought Back". Both shows star Joel Gretsch, too, which I found an odd coincidence...

So what are YOUR favorite miniseries? They don't have to be Sci-Fi, either. If you just loved The Thorn Birds, more power to ya.

Mike

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Monday, September 8, 2008 8:23 AM

REGINAROADIE


I too dug both "Taken" and "The Lost Room". I'm also a fan of the classic sci-fi miniseries "V" and "V: The Final Battle". Despite some 80's cheese, the whole thing holds up incredibly well.

As for non-sci-fi miniseries, recently I got around to watching "Comanche Moon" on DVD, and found myself really drawn into it. I had never read any of the Lonesome Dove books or anything like that and was surprised to see just how amazingly good the story and characters were. The acting was just amazing in it, and it actually makes me want to find the Blu-Ray for the original LONESOME DOVE miniseries. If FIREFLY had lasted longer, and Joss had brought in guest writers and such, I would have loved to have seen Larry McMurtry pen an episode.

Of course, the best miniseries nowadays are on HBO. JOHN ADAMS, BAND OF BROTHERS, FROM THE EARTH TO THE MOON, all of them incredibly well done. I'm DVRing GENERATION KILL on HD so I can see the whole thing from beginning to end. And I'm awaiting the next Spielberg/Hanks produced WW2 miniseries that's supposed to be out next year that's supposed to be set in the Pacific.

And of the Robert Hamli Sr. miniseries that are supposed to suck, I can't help but have a soft spot for both GULLIVER'S TRAVELS and THE ODYSSEY. Even though the former only has a passing resemblance to the book I read in college, I can't help but enjoy it. I just love the fact that the war between the Lilliputians and the other tiny people started over an argument over how to crack open an egg. That has got to be the pettiest excuse to start a war.

**************************************************
"And it starts with a sentence that might last a lifetime, or it all might just go down in flames. If I let you know me, then why would you want me? Each day I don't is a shame. Each day I don't is a great shame."

Loudon Wainwright III - "Strange Weirdos" off the "Knocked Up" soundtrack

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Monday, September 8, 2008 10:07 AM

CHRISISALL


I enjoyed "Triangle"- enuff to buy it. Bryan Singer produced, it's the REAL story behind the Bermuda Triangle.

Been meaning to rent "Taken" though.

Tookisall

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Monday, September 8, 2008 10:34 AM

CYBERSNARK


Ditto for Taken, The Lost Room, and Triangle. Also Genndy Tartakovsky's Clone Wars "maxiseries" (whatever the hell that means).

Do OAV (Original Animated Video) series count as miniseries, or should I start a whole 'nother thread?

-----
We applied the cortical electrodes but were unable to get a neural reaction from either patient.

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Monday, September 8, 2008 11:30 AM

LWAVES


Well Gawdammit!
I was just thinking about doing a miniseries thread sometime this week. Great minds and all that....

I'm a fan of V too. Cheese is good in the right amount at the right time. And it was years ahead of Indedendence Day.

Taken was fantastic. On first viewing I found the first few episodes a little slow but by the end I realised why and throughly enjoyed this even more on my next viewing. Dakota Fanning stole every scene she was in.

The Lost Room was great. Kept me hooked from start to finish and what a fantastic idea. The type of show I like where it doesn't give you all the answers and leaves you wanting more.

I enjoyed Lonesome Dove when that first aired but the second one isn't as good.

In the UK we had a series called Conviction. About detectives investigating the murder of a young girl (who wasn't exactly perfect) and being so convinced they have the right guy that the actions of two of them make the situation worse. It played out the personal lives of the detectives nicely alongside the investigation.

I also thought Casanova (Russell T Davies and David Tennant of Doctor Who fame) was really good. Definitely not historically accurate but good fun.


But the best one for me has to be Band Of Brothers.
Superb acting, stunning set pieces. Not afraid to kill off favourite characters. Very realistic. Emotional.
And to have the survivors talk to the screen but not tell you who they are until the end added greatly to the whole experience, it grounded the whole series in the real world to hear them talk about there time in the war.

I also have Into The West (with our very own Wash in the cast) but have never got around to watching it.



"I don't believe in suicide, but if you'd like to try it it might cheer me up to watch."

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Monday, September 8, 2008 12:56 PM

ELVISCHRIST


Jekyll is pretty amazing.

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Monday, September 8, 2008 3:44 PM

REGINAROADIE


Yeah, that was one aspect about BAND OF BROTHERS that really struck me. That you had the real soldiers there talking about the actual experience, and it completely humbles you to know that while you just saw a very well done depiction of it, that these guys actually LIVED it. And that their designation as "The Greatest Generation" is truly warranted. And with the upcoming Blu-Ray edition of BROTHERS, it's going to have a lot of PiP commentary tracks with the remaining Easy Company veterans talking about their experiences. I'm actually thinking of getting it. I haven't seen it since it first came out, so I think it's about time I saw it again.

The one episode that really struck me was I think episode 9, when they come across the concentration camp. As the audience, we all know about the Holocaust and how it was basically the lowest point in human history. But during the war, no one outside of Europe had any idea that these camps even existed. So when Easy Company discovered them for the first time, it was like we were finding out about it for the first time as well. That we were learning about the horror of it all over again.

On a slightly different note, the same year that FIREFLY came out, there was another genre busting show on NBC that breathed new life into a staid genre that was from one of the creators of BAND OF BROTHERS, and actually had one of the actors from there. It was this show called BOOMTOWN that was on NBC that was a cop show, but it had a RASHOMON POV structure to it, in that you saw different points of view of the same story. And you had tons of different and fucked up characters on the show, the prime examples was A.D.A. David McNorris played by Neal McDonough. You want to see a REAL tortured soul? McNorris would make Mal look like an upstanding citizen.

Here are some clips from the show. I hope they're enough for you guys to find this how out. It never did rise out of the ashes like FIREFLY did, but it should have. The closest thing that has come to BOOMTOWN in terms of bust the cop show wide open is LIFE, which oddly enough, has Damian Lewis, another cast member of BAND OF BROTHERS as the lead.





**************************************************
"And it starts with a sentence that might last a lifetime, or it all might just go down in flames. If I let you know me, then why would you want me? Each day I don't is a shame. Each day I don't is a great shame."

Loudon Wainwright III - "Strange Weirdos" off the "Knocked Up" soundtrack

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Monday, September 8, 2008 4:16 PM

NCBROWNCOAT


Can't wait fot Life to resurface this season.

To get back to miniseries.

If you want romance how about THE THORN BIRDS set in Australia. Pure soap opera from 1983 with Richard Chamberlain as a priest in love with a young girl played by Rachel Ward.

Also A TOWN LIKE ALICE from Nevil Shute's novel about a British woman and Aussie man who meet while captives of the Japanese in WWII Malaya and they are reunited in the Outback years later. It starred Bryan Brown. It was one of the first mini series I remember from Masterpiece Theater.



http://fireflyfaninnc.livejournal.com/








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Monday, September 8, 2008 4:22 PM

TRAVELER


"The Prisoner" with Patrick McGoohan.

"Lonesome Dove" with Robert Duval


http://www.imdb.com/mymovies/list?l=28764731
Traveler

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Monday, September 8, 2008 4:25 PM

KWICKO

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." -- William Casey, Reagan's presidential campaign manager & CIA Director (from first staff meeting in 1981)


I remember liking "Space" based on James A. Michener's book. I read the book before I saw the miniseries. A bit soapish, but I remember liking it.

Mike

"I supported Bush in 2000 and 2004 and intellegence[sic] had very little to do with that decision." - Hero, Real World Event Discussions

I can't help the sinking feeling that my country is now being run by people who read "1984" not as a cautionary tale, but rather as an instruction manual. - Michael Mock

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Monday, September 8, 2008 4:37 PM

NCBROWNCOAT


Any James Michener book is so detailed and long (loved them all) it has to be a mini series...Centennial comes to mind.

http://fireflyfaninnc.livejournal.com/








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Tuesday, September 16, 2008 3:38 PM

KWICKO

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." -- William Casey, Reagan's presidential campaign manager & CIA Director (from first staff meeting in 1981)


Chris, you're really gonna want to see Jekyll. Find it. Rent it.

I triple-dog DARE you!

Mike

This world is a comedy for those who think, and a tragedy for those who feel.

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Tuesday, September 16, 2008 8:34 PM

NEWOLDBROWNCOAT


Slings and Arrows, a Canadian Broadcasting MS, ran for 3 sets of six eps a year. Starred Paul Gross ( Due South) as an actor who had a nervous breakdown during a performance of Hamlet who returned to the Shakespeare festival to direct. Funny, serious stuff about the art of legitimate classical theatre. If you like Shak, or live theatre, or shows about actors and acting, you'll love it. And as a bonus, they do repeats of the same scenes in rehearsal and performance with different actors, so you can see how interpretations differ from night to night, performer to performer.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008 11:20 AM

KWICKO

"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." -- William Casey, Reagan's presidential campaign manager & CIA Director (from first staff meeting in 1981)


Oh, and if you like this season's story arc in "Supernatural" with the angel of the lord and such, then you'll want to check out the miniseries "Fallen", which aired last year on ABC Family. I didn't expect much, but I was pleasantly surprised.

Mike





This world is a comedy for those who think, and a tragedy for those who feel.

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