Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Green Day and the Berkeley Repertory Theater are making a musical out of "American Idiot".

Brandon Sanderson and Tor announced that the final Wheel of Time book is actually going to be a trilogy. I never thought it was possible to wrap up that story in one volume, so no real surprise.

RIP Andy Hallett. The actor who played Lorne (the lounge singing demon) in Angel has died at age 33 from heart disease.

Space.com has an article about the problems of space debris and how the suggestions have been ignored. I just laugh at the reference to Quark as actually making an attempt to comment on the potential problems of trash in space.

SciFi Wire has an interview with James Marsters (mostly about his role in Dragonball Evolution).

There have been a bunch of casting announcements for the Twilight sequel, New Moon, in the last week or so. Seems a bit late since the release date is this November.

Zap2It has an interview with Rob Thomas and a review of Cupid to prepare us for the premier tonight.

Two articles on new developments for stem cells: Yahoo on a safer way to make the cells, and chinaview.cn has an article on signaling pathway discoveries that could aid in transplant effectiveness.

Monday, March 30, 2009


Neil Gaiman links to 2 audio versions of the same story, Chivalry, 1 read by him and 1 by Jane Curtin.

Space.com has a great new photo of the space station taken last week.

CafePress' Babylon 5 Quote store has released an article from JMS describing his first inspiration and notes for what would become Babylon 5. It is interesting to note how much of those first thoughts remained unchanged and look back on what he did with them.

The naming contest for the new ISS module has completed, and Colbert got 230,000 votes (40,000 more than Serenity, which had the most votes of the official entries). NASA reports they will announce the new name in April, taking the contest into consideration. Colbert may end up being the name of the new space toilet instead of the module.

The TV Land awards may be worth watching this year for the stroll down memory lane as they honor M*A*S*H and Magnum PI.

Recently Yahoo! Movies posted 100 Movies to Watch Before You Die. (I think I've seen about 54.) SciFi Wire is disputing some missing SF movies. I would dispute some movies, SF or otherwise. That is what this type of list is for, causing disputes and discussions and getting people to watch films they hadn't considered. The interesting thing about this list is that they aren't trying to say these are the 100 best films, just culturally or historically important. For example, The Maltese Falcon is on the list and belongs there. It isn't my favorite movie, but I know I understood a million references from other things once I'd seen it. I'm sure many others are the same.

SciFi Channel has announced 3 new mini-series: Alice in Wonderland, a new version of Riverworld, and The Phantom. The latter 2 are backdoor pilots. Sources: Futon Critic, SciFi Wire, SF Signal, io9

Two pieces of good news for Monk fans: although not renewed, the episodes that just finished were not the end of Monk - it still has a final season to come (I somehow thought that was the final season, so sorry for the confusion). Also, Sharona (the original co-star played by Bitty Schram) will be returning for an episode.

The controversial dumping of dissolved iron in the ocean (designed to increase carbon storage at the bottom of the ocean and help with global warming) has failed because of shrimp.

Sam Raimi is writing Evil Dead 4. I liked 3, but is another one really necessary?

Primeval season 3 (10 episodes this time) will be airing on BBC America sometime in the next few months and will be released on dvd this fall. According to BBC America Shop: a new cast member is an Egyptologist, and the British Museum let them film inside.

DVRs for the week:
Mon 5pm Greek
Mon 8pm Chuck, Big Bang Theory, House
Mon 830 How I Met Your Mother
Mon 9pm Heroes & 2.5 Men
Mon 10pm Medium
Tue 8pm Reaper
Tue 10pm Cupid (premiere of new version - see here for review)
Wed 8pm Scrubs
Wed 9pm Lost
Wed 10pm Life on Mars (series finale)
Thu 8pm Bones
Thu 9pm CSI & Supernatural
Thu 10pm Eleventh Hour
Fri 8pm Sarah Connor Chronicles
Fri 9pm Dollhouse
Sat 6pm Ashes to Ashes
Sat 6 or 8pm Nora Roberts: High Noon (Lifetime)

Monday, March 23, 2009


Warner Brothers has announced that they will manufacture dvds on demand for movies (and eventually TV shows) from their library. They have started with about 150 films, planning to release about 20 more per month. So, if there is an obscure old film from their vaults that you want to see on dvd (but feel certain won't get a wide release) this is where to look for it. Each dvd will be $19.95. They say launch order was set by the volume of customer requests, but I can't find where to make requests for future releases (like The Perfect Specimen).

Researchers have found a way to cure a type of muscular dystrophy in dogs. Hopefully this will lead to more cures.

Zap2It takes a look at some of the CBS pilots.

DVRs for the week:
Mon 8pm Chuck & How I Met Your Mother
Mon 9pm Heroes
Mon 10pm Medium
Tue 8pm Reaper
Wed 8pm Scrubs
Wed 9pm Lost & Life
Wed 10pm CSI:NY & Life on Mars
Thu 8pm My Name is Earl
Thu 9pm Supernatural & Grey's Anatomy
Thu 10pm Private Practice
Fri 8pm Sarah Connor Chronicles
Fri 9pm Dollhouse

Thursday, March 19, 2009


The Hugo Award nominees have been announced. Several of my nominees made the final ballot (although a few of the ones I wanted the most didn't), and overall it looks like a pretty good list. Several of the nominees are already available as free downloads, and more are sure to be available soon at either the official Anticipation site or linked through this SF Signal post. For comments from nominees, see John Scalzi's initial thoughts and follow-up Q&A posts, Neil Gaiman's post, Charles Stross' post, Cory Doctorow's post

Buy from your local independent bookstore before the end of March and be eligible to win great stuff (small press books). See here for details.

Hypertext is now 20 years old. Doesn't it seem like longer than that?

Tonight's Battlestar Galactica finale (I really need to catch up so I can see this before it gets spoiled) will be followed by a trailer for Stargate: Universe. EW has a photo of the cast (in case you forgot who was cast). This episode may also have a cameo by real-life astronaut Garrett Reisman (who talks about it at Space.com).

The Middleman dvd will be released on July 28th. If you haven't seen this show, remember to watch the dvd. (Also, apparently the show is officially "dormant" not canceled, so more people getting the dvd might help bring it back.)

Big Bang Theory and 2.5 Men just received multi-year renewals.

SF Gate has an article on how an iTouch can be used as a contract-free iPhone.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


If you missed seeing Neil Gaiman on The Colbert Report, he has included the video in his blog today. He also added some follow-up commentary here.

RIP Natasha Richardson. The actress died today at 45 following a fall while skiing. Sources: BBC, CNN, SF Gate, Zap2It

SciFi Channel is becoming the SyFy Channel. I think it's absurd (and oddly appropriate that it is Polish for a venereal disease). Sources: Tor, SF Signal, io9

Space.com has a great new photo of Saturn, showing 4 moons.

Apple announced new features for iPhone software - finally including cut and paste.

Tor has Spiritwalk by Charles de Lint as a free ebook.

New discoveries show that dinosaurs may have had feathers much earlier than was previously believed. Also, the tiniest dinosaur ever discovered has been found in Canada.

A new way of making lithium-ion batteries will lead to smaller batteries that charge much faster. Update: More info from Technology Review.

Zap2It has the video of the complete first episode of Party Down, a new series from Rob Thomas (Veronica Mars) and Paul Rudd. (I haven't seen it yet, but wanted to note where to later before I forget.)

Friday, March 13, 2009


SF Signal reports that the old Atari 2600 games (like Space Invaders and Adventure) have gone online. Oh, the memories.

SF Signal also has the updated Nebula Awards nominations with links to the online versions so you can read them. See also: Locus analysis, note on why there was a correction

The Nebula Awards website has an interview with Jack McDevitt (about Cauldron, Cryptic, etc.).

Apparently some of the lost original Doctor Who episodes are believed to be in Zimbabwe, but they won't let anyone from the BBC in to look.

The Saturn Award nominations have been announced.

The Suvudu free e-library for Random House books (announced recently) has added more formats: Kindle, Sony, Scribd, and Stanza (in addition to the pdf they already include).

The Fox chairman has stepped down. I wonder if this will increase the chances for SF surviving on the network.

Renewal chances for Reaper aren't looking very good this week: one of the main characters has signed on to a pilot for another network.

CG Society shows the Steampunk award winners for video and art. Some great stuff there.

Auxillary Memory has a great article about the value of rereading classic SF books by listening to the audiobook versions. I really like audio books, but I hadn't thought of it from this direction.

3 recent items for Jericho fans: Skeet Ulrich has a new pilot for CBS, Jericho will be continuing as a comic (via i09 and Tor), and there is a possibility of a film version.

As if the original miniseries with Tim Curry wasn't scary enough to make everyone afraid of clowns, Warner Brothers is planning a movie version of Stephen King's It.

Oh, on the DVR front. I didn't mention that this Sunday at 8pm on NBC is the premiere of Kings. I've liked Ian McShane since Lovejoy, but I haven't decided if I'm going to watch this or not. See these reviews and decide for yourself: SF Gate, Zap2It, and What's Alan Watching

Some early pics from Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland have leaked out.

New casting for the V remake is making it tempting: Morena Baccarin (Firefly) and Joel Gretsch (4400). The 2nd link also has news of the new pilot for Donald Faison of Scrubs.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Zap2It has an interview with the creator of How I Met Your Mother that includes some very minor spoilers for future episodes and the direction of the show (including how they handled the pregnancies of the 2 actresses).

Wired has an interview with the director from Torchwood's season 3 mini-series and Doctor Who's upcoming regeneration episode.

Monday, March 9, 2009


Castle premieres tonight. I really like Nathan Fillion, but haven't decided if I'm going to watch or not. To decide for yourself, see reviews at Zap2It, NJ.com, and SF Gate.

Orson Scott Card is going to write a young adult fantasy steampunk series.

Firefox is changing the content of new "empty" tabs that are opened.

DVRs for the week:
Mon 6pm Kyle XY
Mon 8pm Chuck, Big Bang Theory & House
Mon 830 How I Met Your Mother
Mon 9pm Heroes & 2.5 Men
Mon 10pm Medium & possibly the Castle premiere (ABC)
Tues 8pm Reaper
Wed 10pm CSI: NY & Life on Mars
Thu 8pm Bones
Thu 9pm CSI & Supernatural
Thu 10pm Eleventh Hour & Private Practice
Fri 7pm Battlestar Galactica
Fri 8pm Ghost Whisperer & Sarah Connor Chron
Fri 9pm Dollhouse
Fri 10pm Numb3rs
Sat SYN Legend of the Seeker
Sat 6pm Ashes to Ashes

Friday, March 6, 2009

03-06-09 (I love date progressions)

CSI's April 16th episode is going to be for Battlestar Galactica fans - with guest appearances by actress Kate Vernon and the show's creator Ronald D. Moore, and a plot that takes place at a convention.

Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies, Wicked) and Victor Garber (Alias) are set to appear in a quirky new TV show that is supposed to be very good. Unfortunately, it is for Fox.

Alex Proyas (Dark City) is adapting Heinlein's Unpleasant Profession of Jonathan Hoag for the screen. I'll be curious to see how he does the adaptation without repeating himself, since he sites the book as an inspiration for Dark City.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I'm feeling nostaligic for Calvin & Hobbes (the comic, not my cat) after reading this link at John Scalzi's blog and tracking back to the original gallery of grown-up Calvin & Hobbes images.

Barnes & Noble just bought Fictionwise. I wonder how it will end up changing in the long run. For the short run, see the FAQ at Fictionwise.

NASA asked the public to vote on the name for the next ISS module, and the current leaders are Serenity (thanks to the Firefly fans) and Colbert (a write-in request by fans of Stephen Colbert).

Harry Potter 6 has a featurette and a new trailer online. This in the same week they announced release dates for the final 2 movies.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Amazon just released a version of Kindle for the iPhone. So now I can read all those eBooks that are only available in Kindle format without shelling out the extra money for a 3rd device (who really needs a Pocket PC, iPhone, and a dedicated eBook reader like the Kindle even if they do read as many eBooks as I have recently?). Everyone is reporting on this - see sources at: Techdirt, VentureBeat, ZDNet, PC World, NY Times, CNet Crave, CNet Fully Equiped, and SFGate.

Spectrum 16 awards
have been announced for art.

Blood Ties is finally coming to dvd
this June.

Random House is launching a free eBook library with 5 pdf books by Naomi Novik, Robin Hobb, Harry Turtledove, Kim Stanley Robinson, and T.A. Pratt. (Now that I have Red Mars as a hardcover, an audiobook, and an ebook, will I finally get around to moving it off the To Be Read pile and actually reading it?) Per Tor.com's article, they will make the books available on their suvudu.com site, through Stanza (for the iPhone), and other content portals.

Brian Fuller has expressed an interest in making a new Star Trek TV series in the campy 60s style.

Another device is being developed to play internet-sourced TV on the TV. I wonder if they will have the same rights problems that Hulu has had.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

3-3-9 (Square Root Day)

The US version of Life on Mars has been canceled. It will continue to air until the finale in April. According to EW, they gave enough notice to make the finale conclude the series. It managed just one episode more than the UK version (17 eps in one season vs. 16 eps over 2 seasons).

I guess the V remake is real. They announced their first casting today: Scott Wolf.

Space.com has a picture picked by the public as the next target for the Hubble.

Monday, March 2, 2009


SF Site has listed their Reader's Choice Best of 2008.

It sounds like we won't see the Pushing Daisies season 2 dvd until ABC airs the final 3 episodes (which they haven't scheduled) or their rights to them expire in September.

An "super" antibody has been discovered that might help create a universal vaccine for the flu. Two such discoveries in a month must mean they're getting close, right?

DVRs for the week:
Mon 6pm Kyle XY
Mon 8pm Chuck & Big Bang Theory
Mon 830 How I Met Your Mother
Mon 9pm Heroes & 2.5 Men
Mon 10pm Medium
Tues 8pm Reaper (season premiere)
Wed 9pm Lost
Wed 10pm Life on Mars
Thu 7pm Burn Notice
Thu 8pm My Name is Earl
Thu 9pm CSI
Thu 10pm Eleventh Hour
Fri 7pm Battlestar Galactica
Fri 8pm Ghost Whisperer & Sarah Connor Chronicles
Fri 9pm Dollhouse
Fri 10pm Numb3rs
Sat SYN Legend of the Seeker
Sat 6pm Ashes to Ashes (premiere of BBCA Life on Mars sequel)