Saturday, April 12, 2008

Virtuality on FOX

There's one thing you have to grant FOX. They really do take chances on new shows. Admittedly they have a truly terrible record for canceling shows too; but I don't think anyone can blame them for not at least starting on the right track, especially when it comes to science fiction. Case in point, as reported today FOX has greenlit a backdoor pilot for BattleStar Galactica helmer Ronald D Moore's newest sci fi foray Virtuality.

Producers say the sci fi show "is set aboard the Phaeton, Earth's first starship. It revolves around its crew of 12 astronauts on a 10-year journey to explore a distant solar system. To help them endure the long trip and keep their minds occupied, NASA has equipped the ship with advanced virtual-reality modules, allowing the crew members to assume adventurous identities and go to any place they want. The plan works flawlessly until a mysterious "bug" is found in the system."

Its a show about fantasy vs reality. And while you may imagine that you've seen all this in the endless stream of bad Star Trek holodeck gone wrong episodes, I think we can at least hope this show will have a more modern sensibility. And since the pilot was writter by the Battlestar Galactica guys, I'll give it some credit upfront.

Interestingly enough, NBC first apparently passed on this show, saying it was too sci fi for their network, and that's how it ended up at FOX. I sure hope that doesn't mean it will alienate all the non-sci fi viewers. I mean I love hard sci fi, but a show doesn't stand a chance on FOX unless its accessible. Frankly this sounds like it could be a lot more fantasy that sci fi.

But I'm calling it right now. If at the end of this series we realize it was ALL some virtual reality sim in a different world, and non of the characters are really real I will be furious...

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