Tagged: Eureka

John Ostrander: Alphas

In the past, I’ve generally shied away from ongoing series on the channel now known as Syfy. Their version of The Dresden Files sucked toads (sorry, Emily, but compared to the novels by Jim Butcher, the series was execrable) and they put on a Flash Gordon with no space ships. I repeat: No. Space. Ships!

This trend was reversed with the re-imagined Battlestar Galactica and continued with such shows as Eureka, both of which I’ve enjoyed a great deal. They have several other original series now that have gained a viewership but the one that attracted me most has been Alphas. The series concerns a group of metahumans who are dubbed alphas, each with different abilities, all of which were gained at birth. Can you say X-Men? You’d be right. There’s good reasons for that.

The series was created by Michael Karnow and Zak Penn. The latter worked on story and/or script on several X-Men movies, The Incredible Hulk, The Avengers, and my own personal wonky fave, Incident at Loch Ness. So he has chops. And he knows what the X-Men are about.

The series centers around a team of Alphas, recruited to handle bad alphas (sound familiar?) by brilliant non-Alpha Dr. Lee Rosen, a psychiatrist, played by David Strathairn (notable in the last two Bourne movies and, in one of his best roles, Good Night and Good Luck where he played Edward R. Murrow to stunning effect). Straitharn was a large reason I decided to watch the series in the first place; he’s an excellent actor and I’ve never seen him in anything in which he wasn’t honest and believable, even when he plays bad guys. Frankly, I was surprised to see him doing a cable TV series but he has done a significant amount of TV work. In this, he’s the Professor Xavier analog without being a copy.

There are other analogs in the show. The main bad guy, Stanton Parish (played by John Pyper-Ferguson) is a Magneto type. While he doesn’t have the same powers, he’s an alpha (read mutant) who is gathering his fellow alphas and wants to save them from common humanity. He has a respect for his opponent, Dr. Rosen, and seems to be a reluctant mass murderer.

One character, Bill Harken (Malik Yoba), is sort of a Colossus analog in that he is the strongman of the group. The most original character, Gary Bell (Ryan Cartwright), can plug into and read any wavelength but the character is also autistic (on the level of Dustin Hoffman’s character in Rain Man) and his interactions with the team and the world around him are always interesting.

Do I like the series? Yes. It’s not a rip-off of the X-Men per se; it’s more a re-imagining of the core concepts of the X-Men. People are born with special powers and some of them try to save a world that fears and hates them but it’s a more realistic take on the concept (“realistic” being a relative term). No costumes, no spandex. A touch of soap opera, yes, but almost all comic book superheroes have that these days.

Above all, it has David Strathairn who I think I would watch in almost anything. His character is nuanced and fallible and shows a deep, if sometimes flawed, humanity. I’d give the whole series a B+, A-. A third season has not yet been announced but I hope it will be. You may want to catch the first two seasons before it comes back because the storyline and underlying mythology does build. Not as impenetrable as the X-Men have gotten but I’m not sure just jumping in on the third season would be the best idea.

Besides, it’s enjoyable to watch.

MONDAY: Mindy Newell

 

Aaron Rosenberg has No Small Bills

ComicMix contributor Aaron Rosenberg is a prolific writer, editor, and graphic designer who has written role playing games, comic books, fiction, and non-fiction. As a member of Crazy 8 Press, he has the honor of being the second author to launch an original work through the ePublishing site, a seriocomic work called No Small Bills, which goes on sale later this week (UPDATE: Already available now at Barnes & Noble). We sat down with Aaron to get some background on the project.

ComicMix: Aaron, you’re a writer of fiction and non-fiction. Where does No Small Bills fall?

Aaron Rosenberg: Gosh, I really hope it’s fiction! If that story’s real, we could all be in a lot of trouble!

CMix: Seriously, you’ve written fiction and non-fiction in a variety of genres, but you’re not known for comedy. Was this a stretch as a writer?

Rosenberg: It was, yes—and it wasn’t. It’s not what I normally write, but anyone who knows me in person knows that I can get a bit silly at times, so this was a chance to actually write that side of myself. As one friend commented, it was the first book of mine he’d read where he saw my actual voice instead of my “authorial” one. I also went about it much more freeform than usual—I’m normally an obsessive outliner but with No Small Bills I actually started with a basic notion and just let DuckBob lead me along on his merry little journey for a while, so in a way it was very freeing.

CMix: Where did the notion for NSB come from?

Rosenberg: It started as a joke, years back. I honestly don’t remember the circumstances, but I made some comment about a guy with a duck head, and that led to my slapping together a very silly picture of a duck-headed surfer with the label “DuckBob Surfs the Ion Storm!” And then I thought he’d be a fun character to write about, so I copied that line into my “Notions” folder, along with the second line “A fun-filled story of a man-duck’s quest for the perfect galactic wave.” And it sat there for a long, long time, until I decided to try my hand at writing something silly for once. Then it seemed like the perfect time to trot DuckBob back out and let him get some air.

CMix: Many writers are their character’s alter ego; can that be said for you and DuckBob?

Rosenberg: Well, DuckBob certainly bears some similarity to my snarky side. I don’t know about the rest of him, though. I hope I’m not that lazy! Or loud! We do have similar taste in shirts, though. (more…)

Getting Back To EUREKA

 On Monday, Syfy kicks off their “Powerful Mondays” with Season 4.5 of EUREKA. Colin Ferguson and Salli Richardson-Whitfield catch us up on one of the network’s hottest shows,
plus news on the TV Barrage coming to ComicCon and it’s a classic Marvel Comics brawl coming to FEAR ITSELF.

Check out The Point Radio for constant pop culture updates – and please check us out on Facebook right here & toss us a “like”.

A Day In The Life Of A ComicMix Guy

People occasionally ask me: so how do you fill your days working for ComicMix? Here’s what I did yesterday…

After getting up around 10 AM (because I’d been working overnight on various programming changes for the web site) I went into New York City to have lunch with authors [[[Dave Smeds]]] (X-Men: Law Of The Jungle), [[[Aaron Rosenberg]]] (World Of Warcraft, Eureka), [[[David Alan Mack]]] (Farscape: Scorpius for Boom!, Star Trek: Vanguard) and ComicMix contributors Alexandra Honigsberg and Kim Kindya, among others.

Headed off to a post-lunch survey of comic book stores, where I discussed with the owners about DC’s digital plans, and the meeting that DC will be having on Friday between their executives and various comic book store owners. We expect there to be fireworks a bit early this summer.

At one of the comics stores, also caught up with [[[Michael Uslan]]] (executive producer of the Batman films and author of [[[Archie Marries…]]]) who revealed that he’s in town to speak at the United Nations on Friday with Jerry Robinson (Batman artist and creator of Robin and the Joker) to address political cartoonists from all over the world.

Then after a brief meeting with a possible investor, I hopped a subway to Citifield, where I sat in Joe Quesada-provided seats with Peter David and his family to watch the Mets battle the Oakland A’s. Joe was a gracious host, and Peter and I spent a lot of time discussing an upcoming project of his we’ll tell you more about later this week.

It was a looooong game– started an hour late due to rain, and went to 13 innings. (The Mets won on a bases-loaded hit-by-pitch with two outs.) Between innings, I also played chess with Marvel Senior VP of Publishing, Tom Brevoort. I think it’s mate in seven moves, but I’m not sure for which of us yet.

But after the Mets victory, as I headed towards the number 7 subway station, I saw one more comics tie-in– our Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man was there, alternately serenading us with Take Me Out To The Ball Game and his own theme song.

Then back here, setting up a few more things for the site before I had to drive a friend to a 5 AM flight. And after I get back from the airport, the morning press releases will be coming in.

So how was your day?

The Point Radio: Felicia Day Sees Red

The Point Radio: Felicia Day Sees Red


You were probably expecting something scary this weekend? We’ve flipped it around with two of the cutest guests – JESSICA LOWNDES (90210) talks about her new movie thriller and her hit music video, then FELICIA DAY reboots Little Red Riding Hood as only she can!

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Don’t forget that you can now enjoy THE POINT 24 hours a Day – 7 Days a week!. Updates on all parts of pop culture, special programming by some of your favorite personalities and the biggest variety of contemporary music on the net – plus there is a great round of new programs on the air including classic radio each night at 12mid (Eastern) on RETRO RADIO COMICMIX’s Mark Wheatley hitting the FREQUENCY every Saturday at 9pm and even the Editor-In-Chief of COMICMIX, Mike Gold, with his daily WEIRD SCENES and two full hours of insanity every Sunday (7pm ET) with WEIRD SOUNDS!

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The Point Radio: HACK SLASH On The Big Screen?

The Point Radio: HACK SLASH On The Big Screen?

Visits to ComicCon and a weekly fantasy series are part of the creds that Allison Scaglotti brings to the game – but is it enough for her to portray Cassie from HACK SLASH in a big screen adaptation? A lot of people think so, and Allison updates on the latest from her internet born campaign. Plus Felica Day and more are headed to EUREKA and are you shocked to find out there will be a NEMESIS movie?

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Don’t forget that you can now enjoy THE POINT 24 hours a Day – 7 Days a week!. Updates on all parts of pop culture, special programming by some of your favorite personalities and the biggest variety of contemporary music on the net – plus there is a great round of new programs on the air including classic radio each night at 12mid (Eastern) on RETRO RADIO COMICMIX’s Mark Wheatley hitting the FREQUENCY every Saturday at 9pm and even the Editor-In-Chief of COMICMIX, Mike Gold, with his daily WEIRD SCENES and two full hours of insanity every Sunday (7pm ET) with WEIRD SOUNDS!

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The Point Radio: SyFy Close Encounter Of The Geek Kind

The Point Radio: SyFy Close Encounter Of The Geek Kind

In comics, team-ups are cool and on TV they are way cool. It’s a close encounter of the geek kind when ALLISON SCAGLOTTI and NEIL GREYSTONE team up for crossovers on WAREHOUSE 13 and EUREKA. They fill us on how a chance meeting at ComicCon began the process, plus Tarantino on…THE SHADOW? Well, maybe!

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Don’t forget that you can now enjoy THE POINT 24 hours a Day – 7 Days a week!. Updates on all parts of pop culture, special programming by some of your favorite personalities and the biggest variety of contemporary music on the net – plus there is a great round of new programs on the air including classic radio each night at 12mid (Eastern) on RETRO RADIO COMICMIX’s Mark Wheatley hitting the FREQUENCY every Saturday at 9pm and even the Editor-In-Chief of COMICMIX, Mike Gold, with his daily WEIRD SCENES and two full hours of insanity every Sunday (7pm ET) with WEIRD SOUNDS!

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN LIVE
FOR FREE or go to GetThePointRadio for more including a connection for mobile phones including iPhone & Blackberrys.

 

 

The Point Radio: A Stop Over in EUREKA

The Point Radio: A Stop Over in EUREKA

JOE MORTON, star of The SyFy’s original series EUREKA, shares his desire to sing, dance and direct Plus –  Is Universal kidding? A BATTLESTAR GALACTICA reboot with Bryan Singer?  And PeeWee opens his PLAYHOUSE gain while DOLLHOUSE hits the iTunes Store.

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PROGRAMMING NOTE: Catch the Special RE-BROADCAST OF THE COMIX4SIGHT AUCTION
Saturday and Sunday (August 15th & 16th) at 9:00pm (Eastern Time)
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