Tube Bits For 08/15/07

  • The Philadelphia Inquirer has a short piece on the book What’s Science Ever Done For Us: What The Simpsons Can Teach Us About Physics, Robots, Life and the Universe (what a long title). I always like it when The Simpsons foray into science and all I can say is, “Mmmm. Forbidden donut.”
  • Despite the horribleness that is Flash Gordon, it still managed to pull in a 1.5 rating, which isn’t bad for a cable show, but doesn’t come close to Galactica‘s premier. It should be very interesting to see the second episode’s ratings. Can you say disappearing faster than Ming’s masculinity?
  • SciFi Chick (hi Angela!) has a couple of nice NBC items: a Heroes clip and a link to the Bionic Woman related website, Ethical Bionics. NBC really seems to have its internet act together. Now if they would just put the HD versions of shows on their website for later viewing, like ABC.
  • How much of a SF fan are you? Are you man, or woman, enough to name your child after a SF character, but can’t figure out the right name? Well Sci-Fi Baby Names offers 500 names to choose from, including Jabba. Seriously. That’s just asking for trouble. Greedo is a much better name.
  • Chris Weigant offers 4 things Hollywood gets wrong about SF. I will say I think people are catching on to the ‘no sound in space thing’. I’d also like to add ‘There’s no up or down in space.” Why do all spaceships seem to face each other and all have the same orientation? Just once, I’d like to see a ship attack at an angle from below. Which points out that the best shape for a warship in space should be a sphere…
  • Buddy TV offers us two shows that evoke similar feelings to LOST, and then asks for your recommendations. If Nowhere Man is on DVD, I may have to check that out. Another canceled Fox show I think.

17 thoughts on “Tube Bits For 08/15/07”

  1. RE: 4 things Hollywood gets wrong about SF

    I submit that there are more than 4 things Hollywood gets wrong!

    I had a problem with her #4 “What time is it?” question. Red Planet (2000) handled the time delay in communications very well, then Val Kilmer pretty much FUBAR’d the rest of the movie.

    5. Gravity on a space ship is rarely explained.

    6. Apparently no one ever eats or poops in space.

    7. SPACE TRASH!!!! Earth has tons of it. Oddly enough “Lost in Space” (1998) did a good job of showing space trash, while the rest of the movie tanked. GLARP!

    8. Power. At least Star Trek came up with the whole dilithium crystals “fluff” to explain power sources. Most movies don’t even try.

    I could go on forever…..

  2. Actually, it’s been a tradition in my immediate family to name members after sci-fi and fantasy characters. Here’s the list –

    Jessica – first name, Dune

    Chani – middle name, Dune

    Paul – first name, Dune

    Merlin – middle name – um, specifically taken from Mary Stuart’s series but there’s, um, a *few* other books you could claim for this one too.

    Gandalf – cat’s name – LOTR

    Zorro – cat’s name – guess this one doesn’t fit, but it’s a great name for a cat i think!

    Jaxom – cat’s name – White Dragon – Pern series

    Harley – cat’s name – after the bikes. Also doesn’t fit. but I’m being completest by listing it here because it’d be the only one left out of the list.

    Note – this represents several generations of cats – we never had more than 2 at a time. We lived in the city – not a farm w/ actual space for that many animals!

    I definitely plan on continuing the tradition if I actually end up with a kid (not even likely at this point) although not one that’s ridiculously identifiable (“Hey, Evenstar, how was gym class? You’re all sweaty…”). More like a secret password you might get if you’re let in on it.

    ‘Course, haven’t picked one yet… but it’s better than some of the other trends in baby names… and some of the names the stars come up with – yeesh! – one celeb’s kid is named “Peaches Honeyblossom” I’d take my middle name, “chani” over “honeyblossom” any day. And the combo – hard to take someone seriously with a name like that, just like it would be hard to take a “Frodo” seriously at this point.

  3. tditto –

    “her”?!? I’m assuming that’s just a typo.

    You’re right about Red Planet, I had forgotten that one. Still, that’s one exception to a general rule — most movies just ignore time lag in communications.

    As for your #5, I almost included that one — “space ships have to SPIN to have pseudo-gravity!” but then Star Trek has their “gravity plating” to explain it, so I left this one out.

    As for everyone’s comments on two-dimensionality, I totally agree. Especially when they’re in the “war room” or “control room” and they ALWAYS map out their battle plans or star maps on a TWO DIMINSIONAL board. “Stargate” springs to mind, but they’re certainly not the only ones.

    “The enemy’s gate is down.”

    (Ender’s Game)

    -CW

  4. Which points out that the best shape for a warship in space should be a sphere…

    Nah…space ships need wings in order to fly….and a sphere is not aerodynamic enough…wind resistance would slow it down to much ever to ever reach light speed.

  5. You’re right about Red Planet, I had forgotten that one. Still, that’s one exception to a general rule — most movies just ignore time lag in communications.

    Outland

    2001

    2010

    Alien

  6. No I had misread, I though the article came from SFchick. My bad I did not look closely. Sorry Chris, I post from work and sometimes get so distracted I forget where things originated from. Thanks for pointing it out. (H)

  7. At last, a place to respond that I don’t have to login to :)

    Ok, most of you should realize that a movie lasts roughly about two hours, or 90 minutes if it’s going on TV….

    This raises the question how much scientific accuracy do you wish to sacrifice for the sake of actual story? Have you not heard of willing suspension of disbelief? (H) Or, do you wish to be bored with a five minute scientific explanation of something that you already know about, and most of the rest of the audience doesn’t care about?

    I know that, “You kenna change the laws of physics!!” However, at the same time, if everyone is in the same universe, they all have the same problems to solve.

    Or, put more simply, did you think it was cool when Han Solo attached the Millennium Falcon to the back of the Star Destroyer to hide from it, or did you want to see him take ten minutes to pull off the move that is scientifically accurate?

    :-$

  8. @Mike Shields

    What you say reminds me of a Star Trek anecdote.. I don’t recall where I read it (think it was David Gerrold’s “The Making Of TROUBLE WITH TROUBLES”) but TOS Star Trek producers received a 15 page paper from a science major who outlined the necessary requirements and orders for the Enterprise to “reverse course”.. The director thought it would be too time-consuming so they just went with Kirk ordering, “REVERSE COURSE!!”..

    I thought about that when CW wrote his little tirade… :D

    Don’t get me wrong.. Like always, I agree with “SOME” things that CW writes…

    But we do have to give up a little scientific accuracy for entertainment..

    A recent example of that would be DAY AFTER TOMORROW, but PLEASE… Don’t get me started on THAT!!! :D

    Michale…..

  9. @Mike Shields

    Also, you claim that, “we are all living in the same universe”…

    I know several people who would disprove that claim… :D

    Michale…..

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