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Sci-Fi Media Television

Farscape is Back 234

cioxx writes "FilmForce has substantiated rumors of Farscape, widely popular TV miniseries, returning as a standalone project with no new episode commitment attached, independent of Sci-Fi Channel." Previously, some rumors had been flying around that the original series would be finished off in this way, but many Farscape fans are just happy to see more of the show on the way.
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Farscape is Back

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  • by CGP314 ( 672613 ) <(ten.remlaPyrogerGniloC) (ta) (PGC)> on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:07AM (#7481050) Homepage
    Frell yeah!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    ...when I spent a whole morning standing out in the cold in front of Sci-Fi HQ handing out flyers and stuff with a bunch of strangers.

  • Babylon 5 is the only scifi i ever mourned.
    • Re:Babs (Score:3, Interesting)

      by TTMuskrat ( 629320 )
      Babylon 5 at least got to tell its whole story (or at the least the story that J. Michael wanted to tell.)
      Farscape was not allowed to do this and it makes me a happy scaper that they might actually be allowed to wrap up the main story arc.
      • Re:Babs (Score:2, Informative)

        by Holi ( 250190 )
        Actually no it didn't. It was meant to have a 5 year run (and yes I know it did) but prior to the 4th seasons end the show was to be cancelled so J.Michael had to rewrite to end the series at the end of the 4th season. When he was told that it would have a 5th he had to hack together the tacked on 5th season.

        • Hmm, not how I remember it, but close. The show was always 4 seasons + 1 optional, and the optional season wasnt to be decided on until well into the 4th season. So JMS concluded the series in the 4th season, with the last episode that was to be screened filmed near the end of the third season. This was always going to be the way, and various things were filmed in a way that they could put back from season 4 and inserted into season 5 with minimal fuss if the extra season was decided upon, but this was n
      • Yeah, in fact JMS got to tell his entire story, plus a whole extra year :)
    • Re:Babs (Score:5, Interesting)

      by zakezuke ( 229119 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:32AM (#7481136)
      Bab 5 was cool, really cool, but I wouldn't go so far as saying I mourned it because they did manage to actually complete their 5 year story arch.

      Crucade on the other hand didn't really get a chance to go anywhere, other then some hints that the shadow virus that infected earth might be nano based.

      Farscape on the other hand didn't complete their 5 year story arch... we were left at a cliff-hanger awaiting a next season doomed to never come. I caught the BBC download of it, and they basicly said something to the effect of "yea that's it, it's a cliff hanger but no more episodes".

      • Babylon 5 actually didn't finish quite as intended. They didn't have a commitment to the 5th season, so JMS had to pretty much wrap the main arc in 4 seasons. That explains alot about the lower quality of a lot of the 5th season.
      • Farscape on the other hand didn't complete their 5 year story arch... we were left at a cliff-hanger awaiting a next season doomed to never come. I caught the BBC download of it, and they basicly said something to the effect of "yea that's it, it's a cliff hanger but no more episodes".

        Honestly, by that time, I didn't care. Maybe I was disappointed that they didn't seem to be moving in the "Earth is the Peacekeeper homeworld 1 million years ago" theory I had been nursing, but really, after (and during)

    • I'm currently mourning Star Trek.
      • Re:Babs (Score:3, Insightful)

        by willtsmith ( 466546 )
        Mourning Star Trek is like Mourning Dracula. It's not alive, but it's not dead. Voyager and Enterprise are/were terrible.

        It's undead. It would be nice for Paramount to cut off it's head, cut out the heart, and finally burn it. The real Star Trek died with Gene Roddenberry. The animated corpse still adorns telivision.

        • by Myxx ( 21264 )
          You really need to be watching this season then. The Trek boards I lurk on were all mainly in agreement that season1 and 2 sucked, but almost no one says that anymore. Even the most die hard critics grudgingly agree it is better and in some cases as good as Trek gets. You should give this season another chance.
    • "Babylon 5 is the only scifi i ever mourned."

      I was sad when B5 died too. I had nobody to argue with about how great DS9 was. Just when I had them wriggling within the grip of reason. *sigh*
  • by bigbigbison ( 104532 ) * on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:21AM (#7481107) Homepage
    Earlier this week, Dark Horizons [darkhorizons.com] reported that he had learned the production office is open, but that he was unable to learn anything else. SOMETHING is going on but that article simply seems to be plagiarizing the Dark Horizons article.

    There was a Henson press conference set for Thursday according to savefarscape.com [watchfarscape.com] but it was cancelled which leads me to beleive that perhaps whatever deal they had fell through.

    There is a fan convention going on this weekend, so if there is an anouncement look for it soon.
    • by zerocool^ ( 112121 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @12:01PM (#7481247) Homepage Journal
      It's speculation, but the announcement came from a post by LAScaper on the savefarscape forums, which is here: http://www.watchfarscape.com/forums/showthread.php ?s=dc744150f682e3c42e1199c30d15fdf8&threadid=17172 [watchfarscape.com]

      And duplicated here:


      Hey Y'all!!

      I am deliberately giving you this news in the dryest language possible, and I remind you that NOTHING IS SET IN STONE. It's so easy to get excited. But there's reason to at least keep our hopes and efforts going...

      After the Jay Leno show, many of the scapers returned to the hotel. RaeLee Hill (Sikozu) was in the lobby. RoseyM and I were standing there waiting for Tiriel. Naturally, I couldn't find myself standing two feet from this adorable (and tiny!) woman without saying something to her, so we struck up a conversation. RoseyM asked RaeLee if there was anything she could tell us about the show's future. I didn't have the nerve. I assumed RaeLee would say there was nothing to tell.....

      OMG! RaeLee told us several things:

      1. All of the Farscape actors are "on hold".

      2. The studio has been reserved for the months of December, January, and February. RaeLee said they had reserved the "big one" that they used when the show first started.

      3. She said the sets were being built now.

      4. RaeLee said she believes a three part mini-series and a feature movie combination is being discussed. But she's not sure....

      5. She said Ben Browder had signed something. She's not sure but, RaeLee believes it was a letter of intent of some type.

      You can imagine how excited RoseyM and I were to hear this news!! I asked RaeLee if it was ok to put this news on the internet because there were a lot of people who would want to hear about this. I also have no desire to get RaeLee into trouble. She said that no one had told her to keep this information a secret. It was ok to tell 5,000 of my closest friends. She just wanted me to make sure that I say clearly that NOTHING IS SET IN STONE

      RoseyM and I split the pleasant task of posting this information. You will find her post on the Kanasas site.

      I guess the bottom line here is that we have every reason to keep hope a alive scapers!!!

      -----end snip----

  • Original sci-fi? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DuSTman31 ( 578936 )

    Not particularly directed at Farscape, perhaps, but I see a lot of criticism about various sci-fi shows for a lack of originality, in that a lot of basic tech and plot concepts seem mirrored across many different series.

    I think creating an original premise for sci-fi is now extremely hard, all the main aspects of possible futures being represented in one show or another. I know I can't think of anything new to base a story on.

    Can anyone point to some recent sci-fi that is truly original? Thanks.

    • Futurama?
      "Yes, it's a perfect scale model of the universe's largest bottle. I put a tiny spaceship inside to keep it from being boring."

    • by cquark ( 246669 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:39AM (#7481160)
      I think science fiction is in its golden age today, both in terms of interesting well-developed ideas and in terms of the quality of writing. Here are some relatively recent novels that focus on interesting ideas that I'd recommend:
      • Stephen Baxter's Ring, Manifold:Time, Anti-Ice
      • Greg Egan's Quarantine, Diaspora, Distress, and Permutation City
      • Ian MacDonald's Terminal Cafe and Evolution's Shore
      • Alistair Reynold's Revelation Space
      • Rudy Rucker's Software and sequels, which are the weirdest fiction I've encountered since Phillip K Dick
      • S.M. Stirling's Island in the Sea of Time
      • Harry Turtledove's Guns of the South, Agent of Byzantium, and World War series
      • Vernor Vinge's A Fire Upon the Deep and A Deepness in the Sky
      • Robert Charles Wilson's Chronoliths and Bios
      • David Zindell's Neverness
      For short stories, the Year's Best SF series edited by David Hartwell is quite good. Stephen Baxter and especially Greg Egan have amazing short story collections fo their own. If you know a good used bookstore, I'd also highly recommend John Varley's short story collections (most published under several titles). He's not a bad novelist, but he's incredible in short fiction.
      • I cannot even begin to devise a plan of action for how to start to express my extreme shock that Iain M. Banks is inexplicably not on your list.

        Aside from that mindbending omission, I agree that SF is as good today as it ever was.

        Complainers who think that there's no good SF anymore have two key problems. One is that they're forgetting about the selection effect; if you average (for example) one good SF movie every three years, then it feels like an eternity between new ones, but the past is littered with
        • extreme shock that Iain M. Banks is inexplicably not on your list.

          And my extreme pleasure that he's not. I've tried. I've read Use of Weapons (twice), and Consider Phlebas... both are drek. So horrid that I reread one, certain I was missing something. Nope. Lent it to a friend. Same thing - absolutely awful. Yes, I'll admit that I may read trash. I love Simon R. Green. L.E. Modesitt Jr. Jack L. Chalker. Robert A. Heinlein. James Alan Gardner. Ken MacLeod.

          But Iain Banks? Pass.
      • ... so very, very, very much.
      • Don't forget Kim Stanley Robinson's Mar's trilogy Red Mars, Green Mars, Blue Mars), hard SF at its finest.
        True it's a little long (looking at about 1800 pages of not very large print in total) but can't I've ever read such a complete series. The science and society was as extremely well thought out, there were no inconsistencies nor convenient amnesia of scientific laws or even loopholes, only slightly a couple times did I find myself having the slightest doubts about the technology but they were very slig
      • I just finished Revelation Space and Chasm City (A related novel, but not a direct sequel or prequel to rev space), and I must say, these were the best novels sci-fi novels I've read in some time. Reynolds plays a little fast and lose with the explainations of the technology at times (usually writing it off as the POV character doesn't know the details) - but that only enhances the realism of the world, since the POV character is rarely someone who would know how things work.

        I'm going to buy the latest,
        • For much of the technology in Revelation Space, see its sequal Redepmtion Ark. It explains where the conjoiner drives came from, and mostely how they work and why only the conjoiners can make them. (I could tell you now, but I dont want to spoil, post back if you want to know.) The final book in the loose Revelation Space trilogy is out at the end of this month, and I recommend buying it.
        • Sorry to reply again, missed this out on my last post. Redepmtion Ark is most definately out in paperback at the moment, it must be as I have it on my bookshelf at the moment in paperback format.
          • It must be doing really well then - because all I can get ahold of are hardbacks, and I had to go to three bookstores just to find one in stock :) Good news for the publisher and the author. less than 30 days ago, each store which is now sold-out had many copies of Redemption Ark(hardback) and Chasm City in stock - I know this because I was hunting around for Rev Space, which everyone was sold out of at the time.
  • Farscape (Score:2, Interesting)

    by yoder ( 178161 )
    Excellent! Now they just need to bring back the Invisible Man and I will be happy.
  • I'm glad (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Scholasticus ( 567646 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:30AM (#7481131) Journal
    I was a fan of Farscape, and was saddened to see it cancelled. That the series ended with a cliffhanger was a frustrating disappointment. At least now they will be able to tidy things up a bit. I have no hope that Farscape will be revived as a series, but at least this miniseries will give it a fair ending.
    • Re:I'm glad (Score:3, Interesting)

      I was devasted by the cancellation of Farscape as it was the only show I could truly get excited about watching. It didn't help that it was replaced by SG-1, which I consider to be both poorly written and uninteresting. I am one of those fanatics that stopped watching the Sci-Fi channel altogether after the last episode aired. Okay, so I watched Children of Dune. We are all hypocrites.

      To be fair to the Sci-Fi channel, to call the 4th season of Farscape substandard is being generous. I enjoyed that the
      • I am one of those fanatics that stopped watching the Sci-Fi channel altogether after the last episode aired. Okay, so I watched Children of Dune. We are all hypocrites.

        Well, I'm not the only one. Children of Dune is the only thing I've watched on SciFi since Farscape was cancelled. I hope someone from the SciFi Channel is following this and realizes how many viewers they lost when they dumped Farscape. There's just nothing left for real SciFi fans. I used to turn it on for Farscape and watch the othe

  • It's about frelling time.
  • Even if it's just a miniseries, maybe they can bring some closure to the series, or at the very least the end of the last season. Of course, this thing could still be a long way off, and there's a lot that could go wrong, so I'm going to try not to get too excited too early.
  • Not a miniseries (Score:2, Informative)

    by InfoCynic ( 71942 )
    It's inaccurate to call Farscape a miniseries. It was a regular tv show, running 4 seasons with 22 episodes in each. Perhaps the author was confused after reading the article (although that would seem to imply he read the article, which on /., seems unlikely...), that mentions that the new project will be a miniseries.
    • Re:Not a miniseries (Score:5, Informative)

      by Quarters ( 18322 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:52AM (#7481210)
      The show got called a miniseries in the article header because the poster just grabbed various phrases from the linked story and combined them incorrectly. The comment in the article is:

      The Henson company would not comment on the information but a source close to the production has confirmed that the new
      project will be a miniseries, not a new season as originally hoped for by the fans. While no plot details are available, sources have also confirmed that the new project will be independent from the Sci-Fi Channel, the network that broadcast the series. No information is currently available about just where the new miniseries will be appearing or when.

      Obviously, this is good news for the fans that have fought so hard to bring the series back but there may be cause for guarded optimism. The miniseries is currently seen as a standalone project with no new episode commitment attached, so nothing is guaranteed beyond this project. More information as it becomes available right here at IGNFF.

  • I know that not everyone agrees with me that Farscape is possibly the best show to have graced TV since, well since, hell since forever.

    But even if you don't get Farscape you have to have some sympathy for us fans.

    You realize they didn't even have the common curtesy to delete the words 'To be continued' from the last scene of the last episode?

    In the last 3 minutes of the last episode the 2 main characters are blown away by a previously unknown badguy, and then the other good guys are left with jaws in th
  • yay (Score:5, Funny)

    by teamhasnoi ( 554944 ) <.teamhasnoi. .at. .yahoo.com.> on Saturday November 15, 2003 @11:54AM (#7481222) Journal
    I discoved Farscape after it had been cancelled, and Sci-Fi was running the episodes midnight on Sundays.

    I didn't miss one.

    Then they moved it to mondays during the day??! How the hell am I supposed to have a job and watch Farscape.

    So I quit my job.

    It was worth it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 15, 2003 @12:16PM (#7481312)
    The first season or two were pretty interesting. Live actors and puppets working on the same stage in a dramatic setting was kinda cool. And the use of puppets allowed some variation from the common TV sci-fi convention of all aliens as humanoid knock-offs.

    The show began to get tied up in multi-episode arcs (trying to outshine the Babylon 5, I suppose) and ordinary notions of story structure got lost. Attempts to wring "surprise" out of regular characters overwhelmed the growth and development that had been an enjoyable aspect of the principals up to then.

    Humanoid knock-off aliens began showing up in droves, reducing the novelty level. A lot of time spent on earth allowed homo sapiens to be viewed as the "aliens." This got carried to an extreme not needed for long-time sci-fi fans. (Quibble alert: Characters who lived in the midwest of north america but tended to speak with Australian accents was somewhat disconcerting to a native north american. End of quibble)

    The plots went out of control. Elements would be introduced that had no background, tensions would arise that were not resolved. The show's writers and producers promised in the trades and fan publications that upcoming episodes would knock everyone's socks off -- but what hit the screen was just more of the increasingly muddled mess that had now become Farscape.

    The last scenes shown didn't really strike me as a cliffhanger ending, but just another weak set up for following episodes that wouldn't make sense or break through to new visions.

    Let it go.
    • Au contraire -- that Farscape's plotlines were intelligent enough that they couldn't be captured in the standard "1 hour minus advertising" TV slot. That was part of what made the show a step above the rest. The plot was in fact very consistent, if you view it as a whole. More like a movie, spread out over episodes. If you miss several episodes, then yeah, I can see how one might not understand some elements.

      Quibble: the introduction of Americanism following 9/11 was an unfortunate downturn in the seri
      • Quibble: the introduction of Americanism following 9/11 was an unfortunate downturn in the series, possibly motivated by the absurdly Americanized competing series, SG1. SG1 is so "go USA" I can't even watch it. Patriotism and sci-fi are just a terrible mix.

        Well since you are not watching it, you aren't qualified to comment. Sg1 is not so bad (perhaps because most of the crew are canadians) - sure its for american audiences and apparently you have to protray them as gods, but there is a constant undercurr
    • As a series as well!
  • by NormAtHome ( 99305 ) on Saturday November 15, 2003 @01:09PM (#7481537)
    There's seems to be a lot of unanswered questions about if this is actually going to happen or not and Henson & Co. aren't talking...

    Truthfully I loved Farscape but I could also see where the show had serious problems. The major one being that the story arcs were so long and the stories so complicated (often based on things that happened in previous episodes / seasons) that it just couldn't attract new viewers.. I know that for a fact since I tried to get a lot of my friends to watch it and they always had a 1000 questions about why things were happening and why the characters were acting the way that they were which pretty much required giving them a two hour synopsis of every significant event from the last two or three seasons. So far everyone who I've loaned my season one and two DVD's to have really loved it once they managed to watch them all.

    The second problem is that the fourth season (for the most part) just plain sucked.. there were very few good episodes from the first part of the season but it really didn't get good until the last six episodes (I think the writers realized that they needed to pull it together).. I loved the last couple with Criton running around with the fusion bomb that had "Hi There!" (a reference to Dr. Strangelove) written on it strapped to him.. that made the rest of the bad episodes somewhat worth while.

    • Unanswered questions are good. It gets people to watch the next episode (and re-runs) Open books are boring.

      The most successfull shows on TV (Soap Operas) have story lines that span years. The key is to keep adding new themes to drag in new viewers and keep things fresh.

      I'm waiting to see someone make a sci-fi soap opera ;-)
      • May I suggest you run, not walk, to your nearest video store and buy the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine DVD set?

        If you want the best from Soap Opera (long story lines, new themes and character development) in a sci-fi setting, this is the closest approximation you can get. In fact, it's whole Soap Opera character was what turned off a lot of hard-core Trekkies, so it seems that this is just what you're looking for.


    • While the complex stories may make it hard to attract new viewers - that is the same thing that makes the show better than most others. It just has a lot more depth and history.

      Of course, I understand that to me, "good" means interesting/exciting/stimulating. To the studios, "good" only means they sell advertisements. I am looking for quality and depth - studios only care about the money. As a result, truly great SF shows are practically impossible.

  • w00t! (Score:2, Funny)

    by DCowern ( 182668 ) *
    Maybe now someone can write a ALF episode... I've only been waiting since I was 7 for it to come. I mean it's about time, the poor guy has been reduced to shilling for 10-10-220. :)
  • I actually canceled my cable after Farscape was killed off.

    I guess now I will have to get cable long enough for the miniseries.

  • I've downloeaded and started watching Farscape, since I missed it on air. I'm about 1/3rd of the way through the first season. Does it get better? I've been kind of underwhelmed so far (lacks the tightly interconnected storyline of B5, and not as interesting as TNG). So does it get better, or is this just not a show to my liking?
    • It starts to climb uphill fast with the episode "A Bug's Life," which is something like 1.19, when the story line becomes pretty tightly integrated.

    • I felt like you did - the early episodes are "OK". It picks up shortly and when it does, it blows everything else away. However, I've found it somewhat distressing to watch ST* anymore. Compared to Farscape, ST* has thinner plots, thinner characters, and is far less emotionally compelling. Had I never seen Farscape, I would never have developed this feeling about ST*. That is the only thing I'd warn about.

    • Don't panic, it's not just you: the first 5-8 episodes were mostly pretty lame. The show didn't really hit its stride until about 2/3 of the way through the first season.

      Episode 16, "A Human Reaction", was where they started firing on all cylinders.
  • Just closing out the cliffhanger that could have been eliminating in editing anyway. What Farscape really needs is a 22-episode 1-arc final season. But that isn't going to happen. Period.
  • The original thinking was all done on Lexx, and even ignoring that, the writing on Lexx was so superior to Farscape as to make it painful to watch Farscape due to the inevitable comparison.

    Besides, my very non-tech girlfriend really likes Lexx and got bored immediately with Farscape.

    PS: Actually the idea of living starships was around for a while, going back at least to Jaques Vallee's "Fastwalker [amazon.com]" and John Walker [elfis.net]. I expect the Lexx guys picked the idea of a living starship from one of these sources.

  • I liked Farscape well enough, I would even consider myself a fan.

    But from the moment Mal pushed that guy through the engine intiake on his ship I knew that Firefly was a better show. (e.g. if the two were scheduled against one another, I would have to choose the Fly...)

    So yea, I would be happy to see more Farscape, but the cancelation of Firefly should have caused riots... 8-)

"I will make no bargains with terrorist hardware." -- Peter da Silva