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Sci-Fi Television

Science Channel Buys Rights To Firefly 380

Posted by samzenpus
from the welcome-back dept.
citking writes "The Science Channel has purchased the rights to Firefly and plans to air all episodes in order and in high definition. In addition, physicist Dr. Michio Kaku will appear to explain the theoretical science behind the show's sci-fi concepts. There's a brief interview in the article as well with Nathan Fillion, who chimes in with his thoughts on Firefly and playing Mal."
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Science Channel Buys Rights To Firefly

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  • This is important? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by redemtionboy (890616) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @08:55PM (#35263532)
    Since when is it news that a second rate basic cable channel gets the rights to air a show? Call be when they buy the rights to make new episodes.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:04PM (#35263606)

      Since when is it news that a second rate basic cable channel gets the rights to air a show? Call be when they buy the rights to make new episodes.

      since Firefly is the best show of ALL TIME!!

      • by Asmor (775910) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:23PM (#35263760) Homepage

        Since when is it news that a second rate basic cable channel gets the rights to air a show? Call be when they buy the rights to make new episodes.

        since Firefly is

        [snip]

        I'mma let you finish... but I just wanna say... Stargate is the best show of all time!

        • by u17 (1730558) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @10:00PM (#35263956)

          I'mma let you finish... but I just wanna say... Stargate is the best show of all time!

          Oh, come on, mods, do you think it responsible to mod up flamebait comments like this as insightful?

          Besides, I thought everyone knew that Babylon 5 is the best show of all time.

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by X3J11 (791922)

            Oh, come on, mods, do you think it responsible to mod up flamebait comments like this as insightful?

            Besides, I thought everyone knew that Babylon 5 is the best show of all time.

            I'm sorry, but you are both mistaken. Farscape was far superior to both.

            • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

              by ooshna (1654125)

              Besides, I thought everyone knew that Babylon 5 is the best show of all time.

              I'm sorry, but you are both mistaken. Farscape was far superior to both.

              You are all wrong it was Lexx that was the best.

            • by MrLint (519792) on Monday February 21, 2011 @12:02AM (#35264584) Journal

              I describe Farscape as "Epic" in the proper sense. Its really quite as fantastic as the old Greek epics. Death, betrayal, strange places and monsters. Heroic deeds, sacrifice coming home, leaving again, love, loss. It really had everything.

              • by slashdot_commentator (444053) on Monday February 21, 2011 @04:57AM (#35265722) Journal

                I always look at Farscape as the '90's version of American cultural propaganda.

                The archetype of American cultural propaganda was Star Trek (The Original Series). It portrayed a world (galaxy) of the future, free from the fear of atomic weapons wiping out humanity. Where the Earth was united, racial differences irrelevant, the guy in charge was a handsome white guy, reminiscent of JFK, leading an interracial crew, who zipped through the universe, boffing females of every species, kicking the asses of their (evil) enemies with superior weaponry, spreading democracy (the federation) throughout the galaxy, solving every problem with technology and "The American Way". People throughout the Earth ate it up, hook, line and sinker.

                But that storyline became tired and incongruous in a post-Soviet world. Hence, American cultural propaganda program 2.0, Farscape. Instead of pushing American military imperialism, it was American economic imperialism. Moya's crew now consisted of interspecie free-agents, a group of (H1-B) aliens led by a handsome white guy, reminiscent of JFK. Since its post-AIDS, great white leader now sticks to a monogamous relationship. Instead of a grand Federation uniting the galaxy fighting evil empires, its now the big Peacekeeper gov't that's the bad guy, while the plucky entrepreneurial startup who are the good guys. And now all these alien factions are struggling to seize control of Critchton's technology (wormholes), while the crew, at various times, scheme to backstab each other when its to their advantage and struggle to take control of the ship (startup).

                • by Canazza (1428553) on Monday February 21, 2011 @07:31AM (#35266316)

                  you do know it was an Australian show right...

                • by JackieBrown (987087) <dbroome@gmail.com> on Monday February 21, 2011 @09:14AM (#35266928)

                  I always look at Farscape as the '90's version of American cultural propaganda

                  Your assumption that this Australian show was an American show demonstrates how well you have succumbed to the notion that all things are American :)

                  This show was very pro-UN control (versus American control,) very much against the idea of a group making themselves the police of the galaxy that nobody asked for or wanted, renamed NASA to ISA (or something like that,) and towards the end was pro-peace to the point that I was expecting them to break out in song. HEck, they even had an episode that showed how the US was letting 9/11 destroy world unity over the space program.

                  That said, this is my second favorite shows of all time only trumped by Babylon 5. And it surpasses Babylon 5 in terms of consistent awesomeness.

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by wisnoskij (1206448)

            Oh come on mods, show a little professionalism for once.

            Stargate gets Insightful and Babylon 5 gets Flamebait??? I don't care what show you like, their is nothing in this comment that deserves a modding down.

            And Babylon 5 is the best show of all time.

            • And Babylon 5 is the best show of all time.

              You are Sheldon Cooper and I claim my five "*knock* *knock* *knock* Penny"'s.

        • Yeah, dammit. Seeing SGU canceled was like watching Firefly die all over again. :(

    • Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

      • by Scutter (18425) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:07PM (#35263646) Journal

        Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

        I'm prepared to pretend the movie never happened if it mean more episodes. Who's with me?!

        • by jamesh (87723) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:27PM (#35263784)

          Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

          I'm prepared to pretend the movie never happened if it mean more episodes. Who's with me?!

          What movie?

        • by Schadrach (1042952) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:56PM (#35263916)

          Or more reasonably, that any new episodes would fit between the two, since it's implied that a lot of time passed between the series and the movie.

        • by H0p313ss (811249) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:58PM (#35263940)

          Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

          I'm prepared to pretend the movie never happened if it mean more episodes. Who's with me?!

          As much as I loved the series I'm awfully tempted to say let sleeping dogs lie. That one season's worth is a work of art

        • I liked the movie. It was well done; it explained the backstory to non-fans in a seamless way and the plot was well written. It actually extended the series by revealing the true origin of the Reavers. Do I wish that some of the characters were not killed? Yes. If for some miracle that Firefly is ever resurrected, they can create new characters.
        • or soldier on with out them.

          I mean, death and loss are a part of story telling. Particularly when it's supposed to be a Western but in Space.

        • Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

          I'm prepared to pretend the movie never happened if it mean more episodes. Who's with me?!

          I really didn't like the way the movie tried to rush a wrap-up of all the story lines. Some of them might have proven interesting.

      • by Leuf (918654) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:16PM (#35263718)
        There were characters other than Kaylee?
      • by Necroman (61604) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:30PM (#35263798)

        Wrapped up? Joss Whedon loves to kill off main characters. He probably would have killed off at least 1 of those people if he had a second season.

      • by lilomar (1072448)

        um, there is a gap between the final episode and the movie, plenty of room for a season or two :)

        • by grahamd0 (1129971)

          I don't think it would work. I doubt that Summer Glau, while a she is right purdy lady, can pull off 17 anymore.

          Now, I would love them to do another season or two, I just don't think a timeline that involves Wash and Book would work.

        • by hedwards (940851)

          Eh, just throw them through some sort of space/time anomaly, I'm sure that will fix the plot holes necessary to make it worik.

      • Unfortunately, I don't think that will happen after the movie wrapped up the story line and killed off major characters.

        Not to mention that the lead actor is already committed to a different series that's on a different network.

      • by retchdog (1319261)

        You mean "a major character," that being Shepherd Book.

        But seriously, it'd be a bit challenging to keep things going. River is now a fully-capable uber-assassin and psychic, which would make continuing petty heists kind of unbelievable after a while; not to mention that she could almost replace the entire crew, from Jayne to Kaylee, single-handed. Either she and Simon would leave (which is kind of unsatisfying) or the crew would go full-out revolutionary (which could very easily come off cheesy).

        Still, the

      • by dAzED1 (33635)
        did you watch the same movie as me? It already deviated pretty hard from the show. I preferred to think of it as the same characters (with one exception - shepherd got changed a lot) in a completely different timeline.
    • by bill_mcgonigle (4333) * on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:24PM (#35263768) Homepage Journal

      Call be when they buy the rights to make new episodes.

      Well, that's Plan B [helpnathanbuyfirefly.com].

      • by Fluffeh (1273756)

        That is the downright shiniest website I have seen all week! I think I have found a new hobby to put effort and time into!

    • I have to question what you consider a "first rate" channel. The Science Channel is one of the only channels with anything even remotely interesting on television.

      • When they have enough importance that they're not channel 305, and when advertisers revere them enough to put on ads beyond electric nicotine inhalers and not-from-the-US-mint "collectible" money.

        • Do you actually think channel numbers are ranked by order of importance? Channel 1 is the best or even one of the best channels? Or even that channels have the same numbers across networks/the country? (It's not even near 305 where I live)

          • I guess the poster means that typically the single digit channels are local. For most cable systems, the next 90 or so are holdovers from analog days and are more popular like ESPN, CNN, etc. After that you get to the extended channels that don't as much viewership. For HD, a lot of the popular channels are no longer in the first block but there are still many people who don't get HD cable. They don't have the equipment (like a typical senior citizen) or they don't want to pay the extra.
        • by mug funky (910186)

          because advertising dollars determine what i choose to watch, too.

          perhaps if geeknet had a budget they'd start spamming the science channel with TVCs?

        • by citizenr (871508)

          When they have enough importance that they're not channel 305, and when advertisers

          Its called Education. WTF, doesnt US fund educational TV channels like the rest of civilized world?

        • That's funny, because out here (Portland, Oregon) all the premium movie channels are high-numbered, while all the crap (including such gems as QVC or one of its clones) hangs out around the low-numbered local channels. The pr0n channels sit way up there in the 800's-900's, next to the freebie music channels.

          (Besides, Comcast has The Science Channel at 272 here, if that helps you out any).

    • by westlake (615356) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:40PM (#35263842)

      Since when is it news that a second rate basic cable channel gets the rights to air a show?

      The Science Channel is a Discovery network.

      Market penetration, 100 million households for Discovery Channel, 50-70 million households for each of its second-tier networks. Discovery Networks U.S. [wikipedia.org]

      Discovery tends to stay on target. True crime on I.D. Animals on Animal Planet. No pro wrestling to pump up the male demographic. I'm looking at you, SyFy.

      You could do much worse if you were looking for a new home for "Firefly."

      • Seriously, I couldn't agree more. Science Channel did wander a bit off the reservation with the whole 'Punkin Chunkin' thing, but otherwise they tend to stay pretty much within the realm of science-related bits.

        I'm kind of hoping they could cough up a weekly/daily topical news show (err, again?), and a little Science Fiction would do the place wonders, IMHO.

        • by westlake (615356)

          Seriously, I couldn't agree more. Science Channel did wander a bit off the reservation with the whole 'Punkin Chunkin' thing, but otherwise they tend to stay pretty much within the realm of science-related bits.

          In the late 1970s, TVOntario seems to have pioneered the idea of taking a series like The Prisoner or Dr. Who and framing it with first-class commentary by a journalist like Warner Troyer or the science fiction writer Judith Merril.

          If I remember rightly, supplementary materials were available for The Prisoner as part of a distance learning course for college credit.

          The first time I can remember a commercially broadcast TV series being given that kind of academic credibility and significance.

    • by CAIMLAS (41445)

      Eh, I'll second this, though I will say that Sci Fi (er, SyFy), being second rate, still manages to put out a fairly large amount of decent original content on their own (or airs it when it dies somewhere else). Also, they're one of the highest watched cable channels out there, for all age groups (very even demographics). They're about as close as you can get to generally acceptable family fare anymore. (I'm not saying most of their internally produced stuff is -good-, mind you, but for evening fare with th

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Leave Firefly alone, you attention whore!

    I can't watch half of the Science channel programs because I'm sit of seeing him spew bullshit on camera.

  • by v1 (525388) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:07PM (#35263648) Homepage Journal

    what a novel idea!

    the whole first attempt at airing this was a textbook trainwreck, and the result was blamed on the show's merit.

    • by hedwards (940851)

      It debut on Fox, right? I'm surprised that anybody is willing to trust them with their show ideas, given the number of them they've killed prematurely with their incompetence. They killed Family Guy what, like 3 times so far? And failing to give Futurama a consistent slot, I mean what the fuck? Is it really so strange to give viewers the chance to get used to watching a show at the same time long enough to get hooked?

    • by Thing 1 (178996)

      what a novel idea!

      the whole first attempt at airing this was a textbook trainwreck, and the result was blamed on the show's merit.

      Exactly. I remember seeing the "naked girl in a box!" trailers, and then wondering that it was weird to not see that for something like 8 episodes, and that the eighth episode was two hours, and seemed to be a back story; I thought "oh, flashback time" until I later bought the DVD. Fox sucks.

  • (yeah, so I ripped off a different show for that title, but...)

    Maybe this will (I hope?) mean that the Science Channel picks up some actual Hard Sci-Fi (as in "science", kids, not "horror") shows, perhaps expanding on them?

    Doesn't necessarily have to mean making new Firefly episodes (though it would be damned cool if they did that too). Just making new shows that don't suck will suffice.

    They can play 'em on one or more nights of the week, and have documentaries (and yeah, even An Idiot Abroad, semi-sucky as

  • by straponego (521991) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @09:33PM (#35263816)
    Okay, yay Firefly and all that. But the science? I'll be very interested to hear how interplanetary travel, which takes a matter of days, almost invariably results in passing within a couple hundred feet of another ship headed the opposite direction at a few feet per second relative velocity. ...very small solar system? With a couple hundred planets?
    • by jbeaupre (752124)

      The short answer is because an entire season of watching people stare out the window, as they spend months a million miles from anything of interest, doesn't get very good ratings.

      • I'll be very interested to hear how interplanetary travel, which takes a matter of days, almost invariably results in passing within a couple hundred feet of another ship headed the opposite direction at a few feet per second relative velocity. ...very small solar system? With a couple hundred planets?

        The short answer is because an entire season of watching people stare out the window, as they spend months a million miles from anything of interest, doesn't get very good ratings.

        Yeah, but think of the dramatic potential for when they go insane and start trying to murder each other.

      • by ISoldat53 (977164)
        Hence the demise of Stargate Universe.
    • Re:...the science? (Score:4, Informative)

      by retchdog (1319261) on Monday February 21, 2011 @03:20AM (#35265396) Journal

      it's "explained" in the show. it is a smallish solar system, and yeah, most of the offworld sites are moons. also, since they're mostly a trading vessel, they'll be mostly following standard trade routes for fuel economy.

      it's not very plausible, but it does make the show mostly consistent at least.

  • Oh, you mean the "How It's Made" channel!!!
    Or maybe it's the "Technology Channel".

    Yeah, I know it. So now it gets even further off track with sci-fi?
    What's next? Wrestling and reality shows?
  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Sunday February 20, 2011 @10:03PM (#35263988)

    they should buy the rights to SGA, SG1 and SGU and make SGA S6 and SGU S3!

    • by muphin (842524)
      why? because SGA and SG1 have hundreds of episodes, SGU died as it didnt follow the SG mantra.
      Firefly on the other hand had SG1 potential but was cut short due to incompetency, with only 10 episodes (i think) it had gotten a huge following, with a movie aswell... this plainly shows there is a HUGE demand for it, buying the rights to this show would be a winner, just get in there before someone makes a try hard copy and ruins it for everyone.
  • Someone else on another board ( perhaps on this one as well ) mentioned that The Science Channel didn't buy the Firefly IP rights but only bought the syndication rights. Can anyone confirm or deny this?
  • by amstrad (60839) on Monday February 21, 2011 @12:13AM (#35264610)
    ...we'll be alright. Once he strays into other areas of science he becomes a blathering idiot.

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/02/why_do_physicists_think_they_a.php [scienceblogs.com]

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