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16 January 2009 @ 07:16 pm
Fringe and Sanctuary  
These are just some thoughts on these two shows since I mostly caught up on them today. These are the two shows I've been considering dropping, so if you are very sensitive to them, you might not want to read. Especially the Sanctuary one.


Fringe
I'm all caught up on this show. I'm very torn. I like the premise. The music is great. The way it is shot is great. And it mostly takes place in Massachusetts/Northeast. That's a big plus.

When I watch it, I find it geninuely interesting.

But there is something off about this show and I can't really place it. I like Walter and Astrid(?). Charlie - I think that is his name - is cool. Peter is hit and miss. And Olivia needs some kind of personality. Even if they want to make her the straight-laced one, we still have no idea anything that she likes. I feel like the show should be all kinds of awesome but it just sits there looking pretty without much going for it.

I want to like it so much because it should be the type of show I totally fangirl. I'm just not. I'm not feeling the love.

I'm going to stick with it a tad longer but it's definitely on my warning list.


Sanctuary

Probably the biggest disappointment for this entertainment year for me. As you know, I adored the webisodes. I really did. But perhaps my taste and standards have changed over the past two years. I hated the pilot and the subsequent episodes even though they used a lot of the plot from the webisodes.

The premise is great. I love the idea that there is a Sanctuary for creatures that just don't "fit" into the world. However, it has this uncomfortable paternalistic tone that troubles me, one that doesn't seem to be addressed on the show as far as I have noticed. Magnus is a scientist and keeps these creatures locked up. Her character feels that is the best thing to do. That is fine for the character. But I also get the vibe this is the moral stance the show and the writers are taking and that troubles me a bit. Just like I had issues with the show and writers taking a very colonal type stance for the Atlantis team in S2/S3. It's great to set up these hot uncomfortable attitudes and situations, but the writers never dive into it and create drama. Instead, that view is then the show view and if you are one of the good guys or are to sympathize with the good guys, you have to accept that view. That is highly problematic.

Will wasn't so special in the webisodes and it bothers me that he is here. I still enjoy him as a character.

The hairy guy who I never remember his name I adored in the webisodes and he was my fave character. I am indifferent to him here.

I still don't like Ashley.

I really love the focus on a mother/daughter. That is very awesome. It's a nice contrast to many of the male centered relationships on TV. Though, I do have a hard time buying this relationship half the time because of Ashley.

Highlights are definitely the main mythology of the show. The Kabal vs the Sanctuary people was the right type of story to go with here. Also, they seem to have their strongest writing when dealing with the core of the story. So I did enjoy episodes like The Five and Revelations Part 1. If they show would just focus on this aspect and have a tighter narrative, I could see staying. Unfortunately, like every show there is filler and I find this show's filler so bad that I can't wait around for the decent episodes.

I don't know. I don't mean to bring down any Snactuary fans, but something just isn't clicking for me with this show. And again, like Fringe, it should. You all know how I love mythology, history, and supernatural tales and myths. I really am in love with what I think the show is trying to do, but it's just falling in the execution for me.

There is something very off and/or missing from this show. Pacing is part of the problem. This show suffers some of the same problems I found in the later seasons of SG-1 in terms of urgency and pacing. Though, I think they improved on this area somewhat. The newer episodes feel more grounded and better written than the earlier ones.

One of the issues with this show might just be it's too amibitious for the budget that it has. They want to be a very urban/worldly type of show. You can accomplish a lot of this through their green screen work, but other times it comes off extremly fake and distracts from the show. As a show nearly all based in green screen, this can be problematic.

Lastly, one of the absolute biggest problems I have with the show is the dialogue and some of the writing. Again, aside from The Five and Revelations, I really haven't been impressed. The dialogue is often forced and clunky. And some of the plots don't do it for me.

The Morgana were cringeworthy. The Nubbins were outright embarrassing. And the fight club thing annoyed me. So often they overdramatize everything. I just don't buy it.

I'll stick around for Revelations Part 2, but the negatives far far outweight the positive on this show for me. I really wanted to like it and I was so excited for it to premiere, but at the end of the day I just can't force myself to watch something that I'm not enjoying.

So I'll just have to wish Amanda Tapping the best of luck with her project and maybe I'll enjoy her in something else later down the line.

I'm kind of cranky this week, so I've passed on reading reactions to SV's "Legion" and SPN's "Family Remains" on LJ. (I made the mistake and looking at "Legion" reviews on the boards. I loved them both, but I don't want anyone harshing any squee that I have left *clings*
 
 
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(Deleted comment)
Working for the Mandroid: Sanctuarymoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 01:10 am (UTC)
I saw his name pop up on most of the episodes I watched today. What eps did he do of SG-1?

I tried so hard to like it. It has so many elements I should like. It just won't click for me. I find a lot of the acting to be lukewarm, aside from a couple of characters and some decent moments, and the writing is bad compared to other shows on TV.

Something is missing and it just won't click. So instead of trying to force it, I'll let it go. The people that love it can watch it and everyone will be happy that way. ;)

And I am so happy for AT. She does seem like the most successful out of SG-1 so far and that is amazing as she is female and past 30.
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Working for the Mandroid: Runmoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 01:28 am (UTC)
Hmm. I liked Need A LOT when I was new to fandom, but the smarm fanfic for the episode soured me on the episode later on.

However, I do like Forsaken, Fragile Balance, and Avatar. They weren't stellar overall type stories, but Avatar was great for some insight into Teal'c and I liked mini!Jack in Fragile Balance.

I can't remember why I liked Forsaken, though.

The rest I don't care for.

I particularly HATE The Other Guys, Babylon, Forth Horsemna, and the big winner Prometheus Unbound.

It's good to know he wrote some of the eps I loathe the most.
Nialla: Sam and the Writersnialla42 on January 17th, 2009 02:38 am (UTC)
Speaking of Amanda though, who thought that she'd be the one having the most success outside of SG1? Women past 30 don't usually get hired for anything in Hollywood and I'm so happy she just went for it.

This isn't a knock against AT, but she had to pony up part of the money to get the webisodes made. She essentially created her own job (not just acting, but as a producer and I believe she directed too). It wasn't like some Hollywood casting director made the decision to hire a woman over 30.

But still, more power to AT for getting some control in what's still very much a Boy's Club, where the members only want to see hawt young things grace their tv screens.
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Nialla: Teal'cnialla42 on January 17th, 2009 03:33 am (UTC)
I think having not just AT, but some of the same folks behind-the-scenes from Stargate was an influencing factor. Sci Fi probably looked at it as having a crew that has experience working with them, while the lead would draw in an audience from Stargate viewers. It's win/win, and Amanda got her foot in the door. Or perhaps kicked the door down. *g*

MS and CJ's show is still on go, but the writer's strike threw off the timing, but oddly enough, not due to writing.

They have a specific person they want to be the showrunner, Brad Turner. He's directed for both SG-1 and SGA, and is now a producer for 24. The plan was he'd work on "Rage of Angels" when the current season of 24 was completed, but production was halted due to the strike, so he wasn't available when they'd planned.

I'm really curious where it's going to end up airing, because comments from Judge indicate it will be too adult to air on Sci Fi. There was even talk of the pilot going theatrical, but I haven't heard anything recently.
(Anonymous) on January 17th, 2009 07:27 am (UTC)
Actually Amanda was initially hired just as an actor and they specifically wanted Amanda for Magnus. It wasn't until further down the track that they asked her to be an EP. So she didn't get the job because she ponied up some money - she got it on talent.
Working for the Mandroid: Steadfastmoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:06 pm (UTC)
Either way, she was still working with people that already knew her personally. I'm sure that was a big factor. It's a huge factor in how people are hired in every field.

So while I am not denying she is talented - I'm an Amanda fan myself - I can't really say she got the job based on her talent alone. I'm sure it factored in, but her connections, comfort with the network itself, and the fact it's done by Stargate alums played a huge role in this.
Nialla: Sam and the Writersnialla42 on January 17th, 2009 02:52 pm (UTC)
Every article I read gave the impression she was in on the project from the inception, as both an actor and funding backer.

I didn't say she got the job because she ponied up the dough, but that was certainly not a detriment. Especially in an untried business model of the webisodes, where they had no idea if they'd make back their initial investment.

Also helps that those behind-the-scenes are also Stargate folks who know her well, and Sci Fi knows Stargate = fanbase. With the way Hollywood works, it's all about who you know, especially after working 10+ years in the same franchise. She parlayed that quite well, and even though I don't care for the show, it got renewed for another season, so more power to her.
Working for the Mandroid: SG1moonshayde on January 17th, 2009 03:01 pm (UTC)
I've been following the project closely since it began and I always had heard of her as part of major think tank of this from the beginning. I could be wrong and I would admit so if I was, but before the webisodes even happened she was listed as an EP and as one of the creative team that created the series.

I think a mix of talent, connections, and the network landed her this job. That is how the industry works. And as you've mentioned, the network knew they could tape into her fanbase.
Nialla: Stargatenialla42 on January 17th, 2009 03:23 pm (UTC)
That's along the lines I was recalling too, but I hadn't paid close attention, so I wasn't sure if I was remembering right.

I think the "think tank" aspect is correct too. I got the impression they were going to do a project together outside of Stargate, but didn't necessarily have a specific project in mind when they started talking.

AT made use of her connections. Just as CJ and MS will for their project (already have a former director and a former castmate lined up). And DH used the hell out of his connections to get A Dog's Breakfast released. They've very smart people and they'll use whatever tool is available to get the job done.
{red wine and ambien, you're talking shit again}: SPN//Dean//no place like home *spits*powerof3 on January 17th, 2009 01:31 am (UTC)
I like Fringe, but I'm not sure what they're trying to do with Olivia's character. Give her some direction already! Really, I just watch for Peter and Walter. ♥

Never was able to get into Sanctuary. I wanted to, because I adore Amanda Tapping, but the whole accent thing threw me, and I just gave up halfway through the first episode. *shrugs*
Working for the Mandroid: Gravemoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:09 pm (UTC)
The Sanctuary episodes have gotten better, but they just are not well constructed enough to hold my attention for long.

Fringe frustrates me LOL

I like Peter and Walter together. It's an interesting show. But I don't get Olivia and that bugs me. Right now she is just THERE. They haven't really done anything to give her her own personality quirks (aside from the numbers thing) or make her relatable.
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Working for the Mandroid: Flamesmoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:10 pm (UTC)
LOL Okay.

Yeah, I am in a position right now where I cannot really read anything critical on my fave shows, especially SPN. Life is so messy it's basically all I have so I'm extremely sensitive. When things calm down, I should be fine again, but this is my preservation mechanism. :)
     Mandya_phoenixdragon on January 17th, 2009 02:58 am (UTC)
*hugs you*
Working for the Mandroidmoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:11 pm (UTC)
*hugs back*
Muse Chaser: Fringe ~ Walter & Peter (& cow)platysseus on January 17th, 2009 03:15 am (UTC)
I understand the iffy-ness with Fringe. I really want to like it more, but there's just something missing... and I don't feel like delving through the story depths to find it (if it's there).

I've unfortunately let others harsh my squee over SPN. :(
Working for the Mandroid: Divinemoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:12 pm (UTC)
Oh no! No harshing SPN squee!

So yeah, that's why as unfriendly as it sounds, I can't read anyone's reviews and it's why I haven't written any of my own. Just not right now. I'm very sensitive right now and if this helps keep me sane, then so be it.

It's bugging me that I can't figure out what is missing in Fringe.
I am never merry when I hear sweet music: SPN: brb going to hell!paper_tzipporah on January 17th, 2009 04:19 am (UTC)
Ha, my reaction was mostly AH SCARY and then a lot of thinking that everything Dean says is unintentionally really dirty. Seriously, what is with the constant talk about being unable to fill that empty hole? DIRTY, I tell you.

Oh, also! My dad watched the first ten minutes with me, and I was gushing about how awesome the car is, and he snotted something about how it's just an Impala and when he was a kid, everyone drove one. Except his was ugly and brown.

Harshing squee is just wrong. OH GOD I HAVE TO PACK FOR DC.
Working for the Mandroid: Bring Itmoonshayde on January 17th, 2009 12:16 pm (UTC)
I really loved the episode so I don't want to taint that love right now because fandom can kill squee really fast. It was creepy and actony and suspenseful, and they haven't done one of those in a very long time. But we all nitpick, as I even do, and I'm just trying to ignore that for the time being. I'm so stressed I don't need my shows ruined. It's just TV LOL

Ha, yeah. My dad won't watch the show because he hates that kind of thing. But he had a '66 Chevy Impala I think.

You're going to DC? *Gasp* Are you going to the inaugeration??
I am never merry when I hear sweet music: SPN: brb going to hell!paper_tzipporah on January 17th, 2009 12:57 pm (UTC)
YES I AM GOING TO THE INAUGURATION OMG. I will probably not be able to see anything. I might get smushed to death by the crowds. BUT IT IS GOING TO BE GLORIOUS.

Apparently the Obama t-shirt/button/hat/etc vendors are out in force. I am seriously hoping to acquire underwear that says YES WE CAN. Because that would be AWESOME. Someone has to be selling that, right?

My dad wouldn't watch most of the show (but then, he teaches kindergarten and goes to bed very early)), but on his way out of the room, he loomed over me and yelled BOO and then showed me how our door squeaks and how creepy it is and reminded me to turn off all the lights on my way out.