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Jeffrywith1e

What have you been watching lately?

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I was disappointed in the cancellation of Human Target as well. I liked the show (not as much in the second season) but I blame the network for killing the ratings.

 

Second season was slated for beginning in October. It didn't start then, and people only found out the day before that the start was being pushed back to the second week of November. Then it didn't start at that time either! It was pushed another week out. Finally it started. Then, as it ran on a different day than what it did the year before, they decided to throw wrenches into the works by switching up the days on some weeks. Three seperate times they moved the day that the show was on, playing the episode on a different day. One week they even did two new episodes in the SAME WEEK. So only if you followed it VERY closely would you know what was going on with the schedule. A casual fan of it would find it not playing on the day it was supposed to be.

 

That turns the casual fans off.

 

I won't get into the aspects of what I thought they did wrong with the cast in season 2. Some people like the changes. I only liked some of them. But I feel the schedule mumbo jumbo the network did contributed substantially to the low ratings. If people can't count on the show to be on the day it's scheduled to be on, or start the season when it's scheduled to be started, it's not going to have a lot of casual fans tuning in.

 

Of all the cancellations of various shows across various networks, I am most disappointed with the loss of Human Target. It's one of only 3 shows I watch regularly (NCIS and Castle are the other two). So I guess I've got more free time now. *sigh*

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I just watched Clone Wars season 1 which was very awesome . . . . also started watching the first season of La Femme Nikita which is okay but not great so far, Im not sure if Ill finish it or not, definitely wont buy the 2nd season unless it picks up

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For the first time since the 80's, I re-watched Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. I didn't care for these episodes the first time but I thought that since my fandom for Trek has been reignited in recent years I owed it to myself to give these movies another chance.

 

I had only seen TMP in the mid-80s after I first got into Trek and thought it was a snooze-fest back then. I had tried to watch 2 other times in the 80's but fell sleep both times, so I had only seen it all the way through once before. I find that in my early middle age my appreciation is nearly identical to my teen age: boring. I had to fight the urge to fall asleep again. I honestly tried to appreciate it on intellectual and other levels to find anything good about the movie and I couldn't (except for the introduction of the new Enterprise model - Constitution-refit, still my favorite Enterprise out of them all). V'Ger was an Earth probe that acquired artificial intelligence and wanted to reunite with it's creator to learn it's purpose. Whoopty freakin' doo.

 

After the previous 3 ST films culminating in the excellent The Voyage Home, TFF was a huge disappointment. Now going into without the high expectation I had for it in '89, I find that it is still a steaming pile. There are just so many things bad about this movie I'm not going to go into them all. While I appreciate the Humanist messages common to Trek, here it is just tacked on in one-sentence of dialogue at the end to provide the alternative for spirituality that is possible in atheism. The primary messages of TFF is are negative ones. God may be real, but he really isn't the God you think he is. He is a false god that can be destroyed by phasers. Theists are slaves to their religious beliefs. Spirituality is merely a self-diluted way of dealing with emotional pain. Faith in the divine has no value, and a rational search for proof is humanity's only savior. Humanity's final frontier is to rationally eliminate our emotional dependency on God. Ugh. I am a rational spiritual humanist, so the three things are not necessarily mutually exclusive. I don't care what Shatner personally believes, but this re-viewing confirms that Shatner's crusade for atheism lead to one craptacular movie.

 

I had re-watched Nemesis last summer, and between these 3 bottom Trek films, I would have to say that TFF is still the worst.

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I took advantage of a 3-month gift membership of Netflix. I've recently watched:

 

Voyage of the Dawn Treader was ok for the family fantasy genre, but I did not enjoy it as much as Prince Caspian, still my favorite Narnia film so far.

 

After a slow set-up, Taken became an exciting action film chock full of vengeful poetic justice. Liam Neeson is so bad-@ss. It's not worth owning for repeated viewings, but it's definitely worth one viewing. I loved it.

 

I've also watched the Dune mini-series. Next up is the Children of Dune mini-series.

Edited by Whill

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I've also watched the Dune mini-series. Next up is the Children of Dune mini-series.
I love the new versions of both, not ot mention the actresses in the roles are so very beautiful and tallented. I also like how they did the more intricate scenes (the dinner party), leaving the cave, and the entire Children storyline.

 

I wonder when one of y'all are going to try doing a Dune D6? :)

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The '84 Dune film came out in junior high and I read the original novel while the film was in the theater. Despite a lot of the book (and some of the film) being over my head back then, and despite the fact that the film leaves out and changes a lot from the book, I still enjoyed them both. As a young adult in college, I bought a copy of the film and got back into it. My first reaction to the Dune TV mini-series after it originally came out on video was mostly negative, but now it seems that it had been so long since I had read the book that I was mostly comparing it to my experience of watching the film a dozen times. I never had any problem with Paul or Jessica, but I didn't care for most of the other casting or performances.

 

My wife gave the Dune mini-series to me the X-mas before last, and I just finally watched my copy last week. This time I got into it a lot more. Despite the differences between the TV, film and original novel versions, I enjoyed the TV Dune for what it is. I noticed more than ever how much inspiration George Lucas took from Dune for Star Wars. And Princess Irulan is a cutie (in both version). But the 2nd veiwing confirmed one reaction I had to the first viewing: I still hate William Hurt's performance. Why is Duke Leto on bad qualudes all the time? So depressing, sad and slow-speaking.

 

A few years ago, I caught only part of the 2nd half of Children of Dune, and never having read the first two Dune sequel novels I was completely lost. Now the Disc 1 of the Children of Dune will be delivered in tomrrow's mail. I know, I know, I should read the novels first but they are on the list right after re-reading the original novel. I get through my "To Watch" list a bit faster than my "To Read" list!

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I think you'll like it. It's interesting how the women in Children of Dune are the ones in charge, pretty much. I will always have a crush on Barbora Kodetova (Chani) because of those mini-series.

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I finished Disc 1 of CoD (parts 1 & 2) last night. Chani looks better in this series (I think it may have been her longer hair that did it for me). Alia does have an attractive quality (for a psycho abomination chick). And Ghanima is a cutie too.

 

But I was a bit distraught by the change of some of the actors. I had just finally started to accept the TV actors and then they change Jessica to the Borg Queen, Stilgar to a Beverly Hills Cop and Roger Moore Bond villain, and (the ghola of) Duncan to Atherton Wing from Firefly. Oh well, I must accept change.

 

One question, I looked up who this Susan Sarandon character is and is she supposed to be the younger sister of Princess Irulan? Why is the actress playing her almost 3o years older than the one playing Irulan? Is that supposed to be a change the TV series made to novels? I think Paul not marrying the oldest daughter of the former Emperor makes Paul's ascendancy to the Imperial throne seem a little less legtimate. And where was this Princess Wenscia character supposed to be during the original Dune series? What was she doing? It portrays Irulan as either the only daughter of the Emperor or at least the most important one.

 

I'll post my reaction to CoD after I finish Disc 2 next week.

Edited by Whill
duplicate word

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Some of the better shows I've been following of late.. (with and w/o the Mrs.)

 

- Game Of Thrones (HBO! AWESOME! WATCH IT)

- Sons Of Anarchy (Very good!)

- Mad Men (Incredible)

- Dexter (Awesome)

- Nurse Jackie (Didn't think I'd like it, awesome)

- The Good Wife (Another sleeper hit. VERY well written)

- Farscape (never caught it originally for some reason)

- Everything I can find Lovecraft oriented... (Dagon, The Dunwich Horror, The Call Of Cthulu, Castle Freak, Re-Animator, From Beyond, more..)

- Weeds (The lead character's brother-in-law in this one is hilarious)

- Rescue Me (Addictive toilet humor abound)

- The Closer (Another sleeper hit for me. Really grew on me quickly)

 

What have I been reading of late you might ask? (or I will post anyhow.. :))

 

EVERYTHING on this site...

http://www.hplovecraft.com/writings/

And trying to find copies of all these related movies or shows...

http://www.hplovecraft.com/popcult/moviestv/

 

I've been working on a face 2 face, table-top offering of Call Of Cthulu based MiniSix with my local friends.

And of course I've been researching everything Tekumel I can additionally get my hands on for the play by post here on this forum.

http://www.tekumel.com is the setting's main site.

 

Been reading Game Of Thrones by George RR Martin. Additionally I've started reading Sci Fi short story collections. The hugo award winners mostly for now. Other more recent compilations as well.

Edited by Lubidius

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Having read the Dune series, I really really must caution everyone to only read and acknowledge the first Dune novel at the risk of being really dissatisfied with the entire story by the end.

The first book is a totally self contained epic.

Every book after the first seemed intent on a cliffhanger ending.

Dune Messiah/Children of Dune carry forth the story inexorably towards a place that becomes increasing disconnected from the original Dune novel.

Then we hit God Emperor of Dune and its been ... about a 3500 years.

Everyone we learned to care about are dead, except for the Emperor himself who is horrified by his own immortality and that he is personally denying humanity a chance to grow and evolve.

Then we hit Heretics of Dune and another 1500 years have passed, I found it hard to really become emotionally invested with the story.

Chapterhouse Dune seems to launch us even further into the future, well beyond my threshold of being even remotely emotionally invested in the story.

 

As for the films.

I liked the one with Sting in it -- mainly as it seemed to agree with my own mental imagery.

I liked the "Frank Herbert's Dune" and "Frank Herbert's Children of Dune" miniseries mainly as they took the time to flesh out the story into a grander tableau.

If the film and the minis could have been conflated together, the result would be the closest to the original written source.

 

Personally, almost all of my real faves are older shows long since gone.

Red Dwarf

The original Doctor Who (1963 - 1987)

( < I watch and really love the new Doctor Who, but there is a distinct difference in feel > )

Star Trek

Star Trek Next Generation

Star Trek Deep Space Nine (I missed the Ezri Dax stuff due to the UPN network receding away from my area as it collapsed.)

Star Trek Voyager

Star Trek Enterprise (NX-1)

 

Also, the Original Battlestar Galactica.

Jeeze, I'd almost need an IMDB listing for all television shows from about 1973 to about 1988 or so.

There also was the early Nickleodeon channel stuff which bought up a whole slew of foreign (Canadian, British and Australian) children's programming among which were some decent Fantasy, Sci-Fi and even Horror shows which I'd have a hard time naming at this point in time.

 

I have all 5 seasons of Numb3rs which I love.

 

Well, heck.

At this point I generally avoid TV as I really don't desire to get hooked on some new show I'll really love when I've already got a huge collection of older shows to watch and re-watch.

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Having read the Dune series, I really really must caution everyone to only read and acknowledge the first Dune novel at the risk of being really dissatisfied with the entire story by the end.

The first book is a totally self contained epic.

Every book after the first seemed intent on a cliffhanger ending.

Dune Messiah/Children of Dune carry forth the story inexorably towards a place that becomes increasing disconnected from the original Dune novel.

Then we hit God Emperor of Dune and its been ... about a 3500 years.

Everyone we learned to care about are dead, except for the Emperor himself who is horrified by his own immortality and that he is personally denying humanity a chance to grow and evolve.

Then we hit Heretics of Dune and another 1500 years have passed, I found it hard to really become emotionally invested with the story.

Chapterhouse Dune seems to launch us even further into the future, well beyond my threshold of being even remotely emotionally invested in the story.

 

Thanks for your feedback. I had gotten some of these impressions from reading wikis and reviews. The leap to 3500 years in the future doesn't seem interesting to me, so that's one of the reason I was just planning on reading Dune Messiah and Children of Dune after I re-readthe original Dune. I expected that Dune was a completely self-sufficient story and the rest of the novels may have suffered to variying degrees from what I call "sequelitis", so I will brace myself for DM and CoD to veer off the course of Dune.

 

At this point I generally avoid TV as I really don't desire to get hooked on some new show I'll really love when I've already got a huge collection of older shows to watch and re-watch.

 

I with you in spirit, but my wife is a TVaholic so I can't completely avoid getting interested in a few shows. But I try to keep it to a minimum because I have so much else to do with my time.

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Remember my mentioning that all the rest end in cliffhangers?

The very end of Children of Dune ends with a cliffhanger that is resolved 3500 years later in God Emperor of Dune.

It becomes a "Can't stop here, this is Bat Country" for the rest of the series.

Rather like having the brakes fail on a severely icy hillside road, whether you jump from the vehicle or sit there sliding all the way to the bittermost end, it's still a disaster.

Edited by skeloric

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Thanks for the warnings, skel. I do appreciate them. But since I will know the basic plot of the novels from the CoD mini, I won't be totally shocked anyway. I'm reading the first two sequels mainly for inspiration for my Star Wars game, but I will also be able to provide an educated comparison between the novels and the TV adaptation.

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The Blue Planet RPG is another good source then, as it is Dune converted to a large water world with a "magic material" called Longjohn which enables unlimited genetic tampering.

Much of Blue planet is essentially Dune without the constraint of a series of novels locking down 6000 or so years of history.

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The Blue Planet RPG is another good source then, as it is Dune converted to a large water world with a "magic material" called Longjohn which enables unlimited genetic tampering.

 

Whoa, I just read up on that in Wikipedia and that's sounds right up my alley! I think I'll order the GURPS worldbook for that setting. Thanks!

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Whoa, I just read up on that in Wikipedia and that's sounds right up my alley! I think I'll order the GURPS worldbook for that setting. Thanks!

I was hoping you'd like.

 

Anyone else around a Doctor who fan?

Saw "THE REBEL FLESH" last Saturday on BBCA and am a bit bummed with the 2 week wait for the second part of the multi-part tale.

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Also, just got the whole set of RED DWARF onto DVD and been watching them over the last week.

Hard to believe it is the same show by the time season 7 arrives.

The first three seasons are like a classic comedy sketch sitcom.

By season 6 or so, it has completely taken on a dramatic turn, bringing the comedy down a notch.

Then we reach season 9 (which I saw recently sort of 'out of sequence' as I've never seen season 8, reigniting my love of red Dwarf).

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The Blue Dwarf GURPS book is on the way. And I finished the Children of Dune mini. All I can say is... wacky. And this is from someone who thinks the original Dune makes good sense. I think I either must need to read these novels or have the right kind of drugs (or both) to get into the first two Dune sequels. But I'll read the novels narcotics-free and see what I can get out of them first!

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LOL... Blue Dwarf.

Blue Planet perchance?

 

Well Dune Messiah takes all the hero worship and "Chosen One" and "Voice of the Outer World" prophecy of Dune and starts to create a Muad'Dib religion which threatens to destroy Paul the man -- gods are easier to worship without the original deity being around in mortal form to point out that you are "doing it wrong".

Becoming blind frees him from his mortal identity to an extent as he "must be dead" after wandering off into the desert to die.

Children of Dune then follows the Imperial Heirs as they must weave through the intrigues that their father escaped due to his "death".

It all gets wonkier and more distorted from there.

Someone mentioned how sequels are a plague upon the original, this is one damn series where it is not only very true -- it practically is the foundation upon which such a statement originates.

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Yeah, I guess I had just read your post on Red Dwarf.

 

I don't view sequels as a plague on the original because sequels can easily be ignored. I don't allow the aweful sequel Young Guns 2 to have even the slightest impact on my appreciation for the original classic Young Guns. Reap the whirlwind, Sheriff Brady... Reap it!

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Funny you should mention Young Guns and Young Guns 2. About the only thing I liked about Young Guns 2 was the soundtrack. It kind of falls into the same category as the Conan movies. The first one has a much better story. The second one a much better soundtrack but a vomit-in-the-mouth-a-little story.

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Not very RPG related, but I've recently/additionally started watching the series discs for FX television's "Justified", and I have to say I'm liking it a lot. I've also started back on season 1 of "Castle", as I've only caught a handful of them over the years. I like that show a lot too. I think both are likely available on hulu.com in case you want to try a more recent episode of it before queuing up in Netflix or other dvd send box.

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As far as what I've watched lately, my wife and I saw Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides in the theater. It was entertaining, but more of the same. If you liked the previous films you'll probably like this one too...

Edited by Whill

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