“Yatta!”
July 15, 2015 8:17 AM   Subscribe

 
Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
posted by Fizz at 8:18 AM on July 15, 2015 [37 favorites]


THIS FALL: more of that show everyone stopped watching because it was bad and they hated it.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:21 AM on July 15, 2015 [45 favorites]


I remember really liking the first season and then very abruptly losing interest maybe around the finale? It was all so long ago.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:23 AM on July 15, 2015 [11 favorites]


Its really amazing that they managed to bring back the one scifi show that doesn't have a vocal fandom demanding it come back.
posted by litereally at 8:23 AM on July 15, 2015 [93 favorites]


Why would they name the new show after one of the most reviled comic events of all time?
posted by Sangermaine at 8:29 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


On the one hand, you have to ask "WHY?"

On the other hand, you also have to ask "HOW?"
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:30 AM on July 15, 2015 [13 favorites]


Another show that if it had been a ten episode limited mini-series, we'd probably all remember it fondly but US network TV being what it is, they had to run it into the ground.
posted by octothorpe at 8:30 AM on July 15, 2015 [14 favorites]


This, along with lost, was one of the strongest "Oh they don't know where they're going" moments I've experienced as a viewer. Especially season 2's nightmare set of new characters. My wife and I still use "ay dios mio" as shorthand for a show/comic/movie totally losing it.
posted by French Fry at 8:30 AM on July 15, 2015 [8 favorites]


Why would they name the new show after one of the most reviled comic events of all time?

Green Lantern was already taken.
posted by Fizz at 8:31 AM on July 15, 2015 [12 favorites]


Why would they name the new show after one of the most reviled comic events of all time?

Look, if there's one demographic smaller than Heroes fans it's probably people who still have strong feelings about the 1996 Marvel/Wildstorm/Extreme crossover event Heroes Reborn.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:31 AM on July 15, 2015 [21 favorites]


Its really amazing that they managed to bring back the one scifi show that doesn't have a vocal fandom demanding it come back.

Next up: Automan! Make it happen! Cursor demands it!
posted by tittergrrl at 8:32 AM on July 15, 2015 [17 favorites]


I think I liked the first season, that's my memory of having watched it once, though I've retained no details of what happened in it other than something about a cheerleader and a world or something maybe. I kept watching for a bit after that, but I recall never getting as into it again. Then something happened that suggested that no one really needed to stay dead once they die (is that right? ), and I was gone for good.
posted by doctornecessiter at 8:33 AM on July 15, 2015


Season 1 was great, let's all just hang onto that.
posted by Artw at 8:33 AM on July 15, 2015 [20 favorites]


The best part of the first season was Zachary Quinto and he's not even in this, sooo
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:35 AM on July 15, 2015 [7 favorites]


Next up: Automan ! Make it happen! Cursor demands it!

Misfits of Science! I can see the ad: "DID YOU MIS US?"
posted by doctornecessiter at 8:35 AM on July 15, 2015 [8 favorites]


I loved Season 1. It was fun and it nailed the comic book format it was paying homage to.

And then Season 2 happened. And now I have this Season 1 Heroes DVD sitting on my shelf. It's fine if you train your mind into thinking it was a stand-alone event, but every once in a while I forget and it mocks me.

"This is what hope failed looks like."
posted by Fizz at 8:36 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Yeah, I remember telling my wife how amazing it was - we were living in Singapore and bored to death at the time, passing the hours watching En Block, Police & Thief and (shudder) American Idol - and when we tried to watch an episode of S2 it was just so horrendously bad that we turned it off and watched Sense Of Home instead.
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:39 AM on July 15, 2015


litereally: "Its really amazing that they managed to bring back the one scifi show that doesn't have a vocal fandom demanding it come back."

I'm starting a movement to convince NBC into bringing back The Man From Atlantis. Who's with me?
posted by octothorpe at 8:40 AM on July 15, 2015 [6 favorites]


LOST reboot. Who knew the island held more pointless mysteries?
posted by Artw at 8:41 AM on July 15, 2015 [10 favorites]


LOST reboot. Who knew the island held more pointless mysteries?

Umm.....Colony
posted by Fizz at 8:42 AM on July 15, 2015


I feel like this show had the LOST problem of making promises in the beginning that it just couldn't keep. At least this one crashed quickly in the second season instead of petering out slowly like LOST.
posted by Aizkolari at 8:43 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Just remember, season 2 pretty much happened because of the writer's strike, and they never recovered. There's a chance that this could be OK. At least it could be better than everyone's lowered expectations...
posted by jozxyqk at 8:44 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


Oh. Not Yatta!.
posted by qcubed at 8:45 AM on July 15, 2015 [16 favorites]


Yeah but the writers were back for seasons 3 and 4 and I heard from friends who kept watching that they were also prettty bad.
posted by Aizkolari at 8:46 AM on July 15, 2015


I hear the main protagonist will be someone whose power is they can take whatever you throw at them and give it back, but smaller and weaker. Codenamed Diminishing Returns, this person will team up with Flagging Careerman and It's This Or Dinner Theater Lad to infiltrate the world of television and create an exciting television show called...
posted by Shepherd at 8:48 AM on July 15, 2015 [21 favorites]


I remember things starting to fall apart as early as the second half of season 1. But I really don't remember enough now to know why I thought that.
posted by kmz at 8:48 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


I gave Heroes S02 a slight pass because it was the year of the WGA strike, which led to a weirdly truncated season with aborted story arcs all over the place. But the front half of Heroes S03 made me realize that pretty much everything I actually enjoyed about Heroes had to do with Bryan Fuller's involvement, so I bolted and never looked back -- even when they brought Fuller back for a handful of episodes later in the run.

Of course, once Hannibal wraps up in a few weeks, NBC will be completely and utterly dead to me as a broadcast entity (except for the occasional SNL episode), so I'm not even going to waste my time watching this.
posted by Strange Interlude at 8:50 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Just remember, season 2 pretty much happened because of the writer's strike, and they never recovered.

Has anybody written a book about the impact of the strike on TV in general? I feel like I went looking once and didn't find anything.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:51 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


When I saw the original teaser for this, I was like, SERIOUSLY NO ONE MISSES YOU SHOW
posted by Kitteh at 8:52 AM on July 15, 2015 [6 favorites]


It's This Or Dinner Theater Lad

Human Torch and Firestorm called, they wanted to give you props for the sick burn.
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:55 AM on July 15, 2015 [10 favorites]


I really liked the first, heady days of Heroes... before they basically showed everyone that they had no idea where they wanted to go with the storyline, which stumbled and twitched around like a drunk crackhead.

The idea for the show? Very strong. It's hard not to spot other shows, such as Sense8, that borrow heavily from it. The actors? Strong. Several have gone on to be quite successful. Lots of good cameos, too... And it was also quite clever how they used ARG-style online elements, too... though that might've been too much of a distraction at times.

But yeah, the totally screwed up writing, that couldn't create and follow a single cohesive narrative for half a season at a time? Boo.

I hope they will fix their obvious writing problems this time around, and have actually outlined where they want to go for the next couple years already. Perhaps the show was, at least in part, a victim of its own success, because its initial success might've introduced a lot of disparate elements into the show that made the plot into a Frankenstein's monster of bits and pieces.

So, yeah... I will watch it for awhile, but they better have a nice, short, sweet strong arc to start off with, or I will disappear faster and longer than Christopher Eccleston's rather pointless cameo.
posted by markkraft at 8:56 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


"On the one hand, you have to ask "WHY?"

On the other hand, you also have to ask "HOW?""



I'm looking forward to a sequel to Blakes 7, myself.
posted by markkraft at 8:59 AM on July 15, 2015 [8 favorites]


I think I bailed on the first season of this, only tuning back in to watch Spock murder a girl I went to high school with.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:59 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I really liked the first, heady days of Heroes... before they basically showed everyone that they had no idea where they wanted to go with the storyline, which stumbled and twitched around like a drunk crackhead.

Yeah, I liked the first five minutes too.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:00 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


One thing Heroes had going for it is it wasn't just rehashing Marvel storylines. But between the more or less continuous Mutant Registration Act / Sentinels arcs and variants and the upcoming Civil War, this looks like it's trying to horn in on some territory that is extremely well covered rather than be itself.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:07 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


You know what I would do to make the storyline work? Use Hiro as a kind of deus-ex-machina to give the storyline a clean slate. Everything was going to be effed up, so... Total reboot.

If that doesn't work, well... there's probably a virus in the system somewhere. Might as well junk it.
posted by markkraft at 9:07 AM on July 15, 2015


Look, if there's one demographic smaller than Heroes fans it's probably people who still have strong feelings about the 1996 Marvel/Wildstorm/Extreme crossover event Heroes Reborn.

There dozens of us. Dozens!
posted by Sangermaine at 9:10 AM on July 15, 2015


Such disappointment.
When I clicked the link I thought I was about to see a new video by The Green Leaves!
posted by AxelT at 9:14 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Heroes started strong, but the story could have fitted in 14 episodes and by the end they really were out of ideas. Season 2 was a complete mess that lost me on the first or second episode. Sure, the writers' strike surely didn't help, but I doubt it would have been any better.

Picking it up again now seems more like someone at NBC thought "now that everyone loves superhero movies, what if we picked up Heroes again, mixed it up with the X-Men, and throw in a few analogies to persecutions similar to LGBT rights/#blacklivesmatter to have the nerds at IGN and AVClub feeling smart for making the connection and saying how progressive it is? Uh? Uh?".
In brief: NBC has turned into 30 Rock's Kabletown-NBC.
posted by lmfsilva at 9:15 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


My least favorite thing about Heroes was the mind-bogglingly stupid change they made to the cheerleader's powers. They made it so that she no longer felt pain. I realize they probably had their own ideas about what they could achieve with that change, but it ruined the best thing about her: she was really brave. Because, yeah: she could run into a burning building to save a fireman's life. But to do it, she had to fucking get burned. She'd get better from those potentially lethal wounds, yes. But she still had to go suffer them in the first place to use her powers and help people. The courage and strength of will that took for a kid her age was stunning and they took that away, instantly making her painfully boring.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:23 AM on July 15, 2015 [21 favorites]


Next up: Automan ! Make it happen! Cursor demands it!

You misspelled Bicycle Repair Man.
posted by slater at 9:28 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Heroes S1 was fun, but the screamingly stupid backstory (which had me constantly clenching my teeth to stop myself shouting "EVOLUTION DOESN'T WORK LIKE THAT!" every time they dipped into it) was a pretty sure sign that the whole thing was doomed to become a hot mess sooner rather than later.
posted by yoink at 9:29 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Think this got shown in the UK a bit behind the US showing... anyway remember hearing how bad the second series was, watch the first ep of that which has some of the worst Oirish accents I've every heard and ditching it. Did anyone stay the distance to the end? (I did read the summary on wiki a bit back and it sounded not great at all)

Was always amused that one of the big fights of the climax of season 1 was litarally behind a closed door with some light flickering under it... great budget saver!
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:37 AM on July 15, 2015


I dunno. Heroes was a good idea and some of S1 worked, but think of all the useless characters they had even back then. Like, people talk about liking S1, but did you really enjoy watching ALL of it? There was the druggie artist dude and I think he maybe also had a girlfriend who did nothing? Whoever Greg Grunberg played? Recognizable actors appeared as though they were going to be important and then never appeared again: Christopher Eccleston, Clea DuVall, Nora Zehetner. I mean, we all know they added too many characters in S2, but looking back, there were twelve regulars in S1 and EIGHTEEN important recurring characters. It was doomed from the first episode.
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 9:39 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


I would joke about a revival of Land of the Lost, which I loved as a kid, but I guess they already did a shitty reboot of that with Will (spit spit) Farrell. How about The Starlost (I just want to troll Harlan Ellison with that idea) or Land of the Giants (perhaps the most boring and slowest-paced sci-fi tv show ever)?
posted by aught at 9:41 AM on July 15, 2015


Wait, Bryan Fuller worked on Heroes?

But it's not about death or food.
posted by nonasuch at 9:52 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


On a fantasy/science fiction forum I post on, Heroes is still the gold standard for bad writing/idiot plots, even above Star Trek: Into Darkness. If a TV series is tanking, or off to a bad start, someone is sure to point out that as wretched as it may be, it'll never be as bad a Heroes.
posted by Ber at 9:54 AM on July 15, 2015


It's so easy
Happy go lucky
Pleeeeeeeaase watch our show
YATTA!
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 9:54 AM on July 15, 2015 [6 favorites]


In many ways, we are living through what appears to be an emergent Golden Age of Sci-Fi / Fantasy programming. There's a lot out there, and a lot of it is quite good.... oftentimes in ways that prior shows would've had a hard time pulling off, due to the studio's commercial demands and notorious tightfisted behavior... but when sitcoms got larger audiences for a fraction of the production costs, well, it's understandable.

There are so many good choices of content to watch that don't treat their audience like a child, being produced with global partnerships and viewed by an increasingly global audience.

And while I have fond memories of Heroes as being something that helped get us from there to here, and would probably get a bit fanboy around Zack Quinto or Masi Oka, I can't say I really wanted to go back there again, any more than I wanted to go back to Lost in Space.

It's actually pretty amazing that people still want to revisit Star Wars / Star Trek, if you think about it.
posted by markkraft at 9:55 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


WHERE'S MY NEW EPISODES OF CARNIVALE YOU BASTARDS!
posted by lumpenprole at 9:59 AM on July 15, 2015 [8 favorites]


Psi Factor reboot. If X-Files can be dusted off, so can it's Canadian non-union equivalent. Let Dan do product tie-ins for Crystal Head Vodka in his intros ("After seeing a ghost, nothing calms my nerves like a drink of triple distilled..."). Matt Frewer has shown he will be in pretty much anything so long as the check clears. I even think that Dignified Elder Doctor Character Actor is still kicking around somewhere. Hell, let Dan's little brother back in the team. They call all work together to track down artifacts sold from a mysterious cursed shop on Friday the 13th or something. Every episode they could call in a special syndicated guest hero like Forever Knight or Nightman or Airwolf.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 9:59 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


So... anyone else excited that HBO got the rights for this?!
posted by markkraft at 10:03 AM on July 15, 2015


IMHO, the problem with Heroes was they couldn't kill Sylar. Redeem him or kill him, but he got boring as a villain.

Also Peter was super whiny.

Also they couldn't remember how Hiro became a badass.

Also they made Mohinder a mutant with stupid powers.
posted by maryr at 10:08 AM on July 15, 2015 [9 favorites]


So... anyone else excited that HBO got the rights for this?!

Given that 99% of the action of the Foundation Trilogy is two people in a room talking to each other it certainly won't need much of a budget.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:08 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Heroes, like Desperate Housewives, should've been a one-season show. The mystery was solved; the cheerleader and the world were saved.

The remaining seasons, which I watched because...I don't know...I hoped it'd make sense eventually? (SPOILER: It didn't.) were a mishmosh of ideas and moments: Sylar's bad! Now he's good! Now he's bad! Really, the only good thing I could take away was Kristen Bell as Elle. Maybe she can reappear alongside Sloth-Man in the new show. That'd be the only reason I'd give NBC another minute of my viewing life.
posted by the sobsister at 10:10 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Given that 99% of the action of the Foundation Trilogy is two people in a room talking to each other it certainly won't need much of a budget.

Don't worry, HBO will turn that into Sex Box somehow.
posted by maryr at 10:10 AM on July 15, 2015 [10 favorites]


If they do make a Foundation series, I hope they go with an old-school 50s SF future look and don't try to modernize it.
posted by Sangermaine at 10:11 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Where's my Mutant X / Birds of Prey crossover
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:16 AM on July 15, 2015


Don't worry, HBO will turn that into Sex Box somehow.

It'll have to be gay sex, what with the total lack of female characters for most of the first book
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:17 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


"Given that 99% of the action of the Foundation Trilogy is two people in a room talking to each other it certainly won't need much of a budget."

... and The Lord of the Rings was a long hike.

There's a lot to be said for simplicity. One show I have been digging lately has been Humans, which is based on the Swedish show Real Humans.

... and the great thing about making a solid sci-fi show about human-like robots?! They're human-like robots! Massive budgets not required.

It's like the networks have finally discovered that some of the best sci-fi out there is just humans, talking to each other.
posted by markkraft at 10:20 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


... and The Lord of the Rings was a long hike.

Except for the endless battles and terrors and physical hardships and ghosts and ships and magical puzzles and gollum-wrestling and attacks from all directions from one monster after another and... seriously, have you read it?
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:26 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


So... anyone else excited that HBO got the rights for this?!

I'm actually kinda not. I reread the trilogy last year and despite it being masterfullly written and groundbreaking, it is just painfully out of date. From use of existing technology, to expectations of future technology, to societal attitudes towards, well, everything.

If directly translated, there's a lot of it that would play as comedy these days.
posted by lumpenprole at 10:28 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Maybe it'll turn into an elaborate time travel farce revealing it's a prequel to Grimm.
posted by Small Dollar at 10:34 AM on July 15, 2015


"Except for the endless battles and terrors and physical hardships and ghosts and ships and magical puzzles and gollum-wrestling and attacks from all directions from one monster after another and... seriously, have you read it?"

Well, there is a little of that, too... but does that *really* need to be in there, in order for it to be dramatized?

"Wow! That was a long snowy hike!... Hey, look, it's a door with all sorts of squiggly Elvish writing on it. Let's go in....!"

"Wow... sure is dark in here... whaaaaaaa?! RUUUUUNNNNNNNN!"

"Whew! It's been hours, or maybe even days, but we're out the other side of the cave finally. Um... anyone seen Gandalf?! Ah well... maybe we'll catch him later if we hike down to that valley there. Sure hope there's water. I need to refill my canteen!"
posted by markkraft at 10:38 AM on July 15, 2015


BTW note I wasn't in any way disparaging the Foundation Trilogy. I was simply pointing out that it rather famously doesn't depict action. A faithful screen rendering wouldn't be, well, very HBOish.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:40 AM on July 15, 2015


I'm very, very, very, very, very interested in the new Foundation adaptation, but also scared. On one hand, Jonathan Nolan and HBO, but on the other hand it's my favorite book series in the universe, so any changes will be hard to accept. And no doubt there will be changes.

As for Heroes...

DirtyOldTown:
My least favorite thing about Heroes was the mind-bogglingly stupid change they made to the cheerleader's powers. They made it so that she no longer felt pain. I realize they probably had their own ideas about what they could achieve with that change, but it ruined the best thing about her: she was really brave.
I thought she already had a serious case of PTSD from all the injuries, and they were going for a River's Edge kind of portrayal of a young person already burned out on life. But they definitely went a different way.


Heroes turned out to be an extremely disappointing TV series, but it had so much potential in the first season! I'll watch this new miniseries, though. Hopefully they've condensed the best stuff into it and left out the bad. It would have been much better to do a total reboot, but maybe they can still pull off a continuation if they selectively ignore the wonky stuff from before and "reinterpret" the stuff they want to remember.
posted by Kevin Street at 10:40 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Foundation, to me, is uncomfortably imperialist. Oh, one single dude knows for an absolute fact what will be best for humanity 1000 years down the line, which is of course an all-controlling galactic empire, so he sets about manipulating all of mankind's destiny to suit his individual picture of what society should be, and damn everyone else who might think differently. Damn all the other potential people of vision in the future who might take the galaxy on an entirely new course. Nope, what we need is to refresh the status quo of empire as quickly as possible.

I know that the point of the book is that psychohistory can accuratly predict the future, but the conclusion that Seldon reaches - empire > no empire, whatever the cost - is fucking terrifying! I feel like in a modern retelling his organization would be the villains!
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:42 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Part of that disconnect comes from Foundation being inspired by the fall of the Roman Empire. (And the rise of successor states.) In the real life historical model Asimov was emulating the choice was often between empire and barbarism, with tall bearded guys burning the libraries and killing everybody in sight. "Empire" was synonymous with "civilization."

It is kind of horrible that one man could secretly manipulate the fate of trillions, using nothing but mathematics as his moral justification. But the same math showed him that many more people would suffer under generations of barbarism if he didn't act.
posted by Kevin Street at 10:49 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Definitely not a fan of Foundation, even though I read about five of the books at one point. Not only is Asimov's depiction of the future woefully out of date, but I feel like he's one of the many science fiction authors who put ideas before characters. And his ideas are pretty weak; even at thirteen I found the idea of "psychohistory" to be an absurd premise.
posted by Edgewise at 10:49 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I hope they go with an old-school 50s SF future look and don't try to modernize it.

While Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow proved that it doesn't matter how pretty your retro futurism is if you don't have a goddamn script worth mentioning, y'know what I would really like to see? A series set in the Forbidden Planet future, with completely faithful costumes, ship, technology, scene design and, if you can get the actors and writers to do it, speech patterns and even bizarrely dated midcentury attitudes.

To some extent that's what Star Trek was, but it was too updated, Westerned and Roddenberried. It needs to be more John W. Cambpell meets South Pacific, and less Wagon Train to the Stars meets Vietnam Era Consciousness Raising.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:54 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Wow, all you haters. I am totally going to watch this.
posted by desjardins at 10:54 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Foundation, to me, is uncomfortably imperialist. Oh, one single dude knows for an absolute fact what will be best for humanity 1000 years down the line, which is of course an all-controlling galactic empire, so he sets about manipulating all of mankind's destiny to suit his individual picture of what society should be, and damn everyone else who might think differently. Damn all the other potential people of vision in the future who might take the galaxy on an entirely new course. Nope, what we need is to refresh the status quo of empire as quickly as possible.
showbiz_liz

That's not exactly accurate.

First, Seldon specifically doesn't know for an absolute fact what's going to happen. Psychohistory is described as only being able to predict very, very large-scale trends, so he can only tell in general what will happen to everyone, not what will happen with any one person or group.

Second, he didn't say "empire > no empire". Seldon found was that the current Empire was going to fall, and that there would be a 30,000 year dark age of suffering and ignorance, but that this could be reduced to 1,000 years via the Foundation. So it's more like "relatively short dark age > extremely long one".

If you accept the internal logic of the books, then this isn't really terrifying. He's trying to do what he can to reduce overall suffering.

A good SF counterpoint to this might be the "Golden Path" from the Dune series. There the clairvoyant god-king of humanity sees that continuing the status quo would cause humanity to stagnate and die, and so intentionally engineers the fall of his empire and a dark age to free everyone.
posted by Sangermaine at 10:56 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Back to Heroes...

It would have been much better to do a total reboot, but maybe they can still pull off a continuation if they selectively ignore the wonky stuff from before and "reinterpret" the stuff they want to remember.

I'm actually pretty excited about some upcoming continuations of old series, specifically Twin Peaks and Ash vs. the Evil Dead. The idea of picking up on these characters twenty+ years later, with all that implies, is so compelling. Of course, these are continuations of good things; they should have just left Heroes alone, but that was never in dispute, anyway.
posted by Edgewise at 10:56 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


And his ideas are pretty weak; even at thirteen I found the idea of "psychohistory" to be an absurd premise.
Edgewise

Why? I read somewhere that he was extrapolating from the concept of Brownian motion, which says that you can't predict the behavior of any individual molecule of a gas, but you can accurately predict the behavior of the whole.

We also already do trend analysis at a macro level. I'm not saying psychohistory is real science, just that it's extrapolating from reasonable grounds.
posted by Sangermaine at 10:58 AM on July 15, 2015


Second, he didn't say "empire > no empire". Seldon found was that the current Empire was going to fall, and that there would be a 30,000 year dark age, but that this could be reduced to 1,000 years via the Foundation. So it's more like "relatively short dark age > extremely long one".

I guess it's the concept of this 'dark age' that I take issue with. What does that actually mean, and why is it necessarily worse than an empire?

As if nothing good or worthwhile ever came out of a smaller, more isolated civilization, or as if no one ever suffered under an imperial one.

It actually reminds me of some contemporaneous (to the books) forms of city planning! There were all these great ideas about how to maximize the efficiency of cities based on Scientific Principals, and then they built these cities and they turned out to work terribly because the designers had made all sorts of tacit assumptions about human nature which were not borne out in practice. That's how Foundation feels to me.

Obviously, within the confines of reality as described in the books, Seldon is a hero. But that reality doesn't match up with what I see as actual reality.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:00 AM on July 15, 2015


I actually agree with what you're saying when it applies to real life, but in the Foundation series they seem to imply (or maybe outright state, I can't remember) that humanity reached its apogee under the Empire. Countless thousands of years of progress culminated with that organization. Technologically or culturally there wasn't any other possible trajectory without it other than straight down. Therefore, the way to climb back up and better things for the majority is to create another one.
posted by Kevin Street at 11:08 AM on July 15, 2015


The underlying assumption I guess is that it's better for people to be connected rather than isolated, and working together instead of working against each other. And when you consider that Asimov wrote the first three books of the series during WWII you can see why that would appeal to him.
posted by Kevin Street at 11:14 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I actually agree with what you're saying when it applies to real life, but in the Foundation series they seem to imply (or maybe outright state, I can't remember) that humanity reached its apogee under the Empire. Countless thousands of years of progress culminated with that organization. Technologically or culturally there wasn't any other possible trajectory without it other than straight down. Therefore, the way to climb back up and better things for the majority is to create another one.

Right - but that very attitude reflects some very disturbing attitudes in Western culture that are ahistorical and racist. "We are the pinnacle of civilization, if you can't be like us there's no point in existing, better hurry up and become us so that you will be legitimate." You know? So when Asimov presents an idea like "this empire is definitely the apogee of all aspects of human existence" uncritically as absolute fact in the books, I can't just think "well, these books are about this particular book reality" - they really do come off, to me, as justifications for imperialism in general.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:15 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


Wait why are we talking about this in the Heroes thread anyway
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:16 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Because it's fun?
posted by Kevin Street at 11:17 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


More fun than watching Heroes will be anyway, and I say this as someone who stuck with it up to the circus season.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 11:23 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


...the circus season?
posted by Elementary Penguin at 11:25 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


I felt like the circus season was where things were just starting to get interesting again. And then (spoilers) the whole reason the circus leader guy was bringing the group together was to impress a girl. Which was just lame, compared with what it could have been.
posted by JDHarper at 11:29 AM on July 15, 2015


Scrap the whole idea.
Make a halfway decent X-Men or New Mutants series.
Or any combo of both teams.
With or without flagship characters.
Mixed, all boys, all girls, all alien sentient polymorphic gay rocks.
It would still be better than Heroes.
posted by signal at 11:29 AM on July 15, 2015


Yeah, I never got into Heroes, by the time I had the time to watch it about halfway through the first season, my friends were already saying not to bother, it had gone way down in quality. I keep meaning to watch it in reruns or on disk, but never got around to it.
posted by Blackanvil at 11:32 AM on July 15, 2015


"Guys, guys! What are we going to do? We're running out of Marvel and DC properties."
"C'Mon - we could actually, you know, do Wonder Woman or Squirrel Girl or Rat Queens. Something with women heroes in it?"
"Be serious! Represent half the population? No - let's bring back FireFly."
"Shyeah, as if."
"Hey! Heroes sunk itself - we can bring it back and CHEAP - no cash to Marvel!"
"Plus we can copy most of the plot themes of X Men! Nobody would ever catch on that we were creating a dystopia where mutantsEVO's are hunted down because they're feared!"

end scene, exit chased by bear
posted by plinth at 11:51 AM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


It'll have to be gay sex, what with the total lack of female characters for most of the first book

I mean, this more or less writes itself: Salvor Hardon struggles with Dr. Lewis Peen, and later against Prince Regent Weenis...
posted by The Tensor at 11:53 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


OK so we all complain when they remake something people liked, like TMNT or Planet of the Apes, I'd gotten that figured out. But we also complain when a show with amazing promise that was thrown off its rails and never recovered gets another shot?

I'm starting to think that all we do is complain.
posted by cmoj at 11:55 AM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Wait, Bryan Fuller worked on Heroes?

But it's not about death or food.


And Deep Space Nine.

When I learned he was responsible for the episode where Garak goes feral on a spacestation it all made sense.
posted by Artw at 11:59 AM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


...the circus season?

Yeah there was a season where there was a circus of people with powers. I think one of them had magic tattoos.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 12:13 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Paul Krugman was inspired to become an economist because of The Foundation trilogy.

(Foundation mike drop)
posted by angrycat at 12:16 PM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm starting to think that all we do is complain.

I'm starting to think maybe people don't like remakes.
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 12:20 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think one of them had magic tattoos.

Did they have a magic calliope?
posted by Artw at 12:23 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Remakes can be good, but it's a problem when there's nothing but remakes. In this case I agree with cmoj that Heroes had a lot of promise, and after all these years it's worth giving it another shot.
posted by Kevin Street at 12:23 PM on July 15, 2015


So did anyone watch Wayward Pines? Did it end up just being The Village in Twin Peaks dressup?
posted by Artw at 12:24 PM on July 15, 2015


So did anyone watch Wayward Pines? Did it end up just being The Village in Twin Peaks dressup?

It's not hard to google the big secret (in that it's based on a book).... it wasn't much of a surprise
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:30 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


and after all these years it's worth giving it another shot.

yeah, it's been five long years since Heroes went off the air. I'm hoping we also see some more revivals of disappointing franchises from 2010.
posted by skewed at 12:32 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


It's not hard to google the big secret (in that it's based on a book).... it wasn't much of a surprise

Oh.

That's rubbish. Glad I didn't watch much of that one.

They should do a show about the conspiracy that keeps Under The Dome going.
posted by Artw at 12:35 PM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


I'm starting to think that all we do is complain.

I'd give it a shot if instead of exhuming a 10-year old corpse they said "we're trying to do an original series with superheroes, something like Heroes, but this time, we'll listen to what worked and what didn't and try to do it right." From the trailer, this seems the "cape" persecution from Watchmen, the bits of mutant school from X-Men, while trying to push in some social issues allegories to make it seem smart than it is.

And this being NBC doesn't help one bit - it's a network that is both aimless and rudderless. Considering their last two big attempts at comedy included bringing out of retirement Michael J Fox (in a terrible sitcom that tried to hide the complete lack of purpose with an icon like MJF and a cast so large that after three episodes still had no clue what most of them were doing) and fucking Cosby. I doubt their plan to the series is more than "look, let's put Heroes back on, maybe the kids who eat up anything with a super-hero on will see it".


So did anyone watch Wayward Pines? Did it end up just being The Village in Twin Peaks dressup?

Wayward Pines on FanFare, where we argue in favor for dead kids.
Maybe just me.
posted by lmfsilva at 12:36 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also I seem to have touched a monkey paw while wishing for more spaceship shows and SyFy seems to be churning them out by the dozen now, but none of them turn out all that good.
posted by Artw at 12:38 PM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


yeah, it's been five long years since Heroes went off the air. I'm hoping we also see some more revivals of disappointing franchises from 2010.

Heh, there's a list!
posted by Artw at 12:39 PM on July 15, 2015


Count me as one of the few people that actually liked FlashForward, despite being such a goddamn mess half the time. I wanted to at least a lot of the dangling plot threads resolved.

I see that The Cape isn't on Artw's list, but I stuck it out for that one for at least three episodes before asking why I hated myself so much.
posted by Kitteh at 12:45 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think that one is 2011.
posted by Artw at 12:46 PM on July 15, 2015


Also the fact that they cast the dude from Chuck, another genre show that had early promise and squandered it starting in Episode 2, doesn't give me much hope for this. "What are two things that were annoying about five to six years ago that no one was that into? Let's put them together."
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 12:47 PM on July 15, 2015


It takes time and money to do a good spaceship show. The ones that've come out first are the cheapest and most derivative, but hopefully the the really good ones will appear when they're ready.

I've got to say, though, that it really freaks me out to see a spaceship named Rocinante. Have Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck somehow been reading my unpublished fifteen year old stories? ಠ_ಠ
posted by Kevin Street at 12:47 PM on July 15, 2015


Ha ha.

On March 2, 2011, NBC announced that the series finale would be aired only on the network's website.
posted by Artw at 12:47 PM on July 15, 2015


...the circus season?

American Heroes Story! Two horrible tastes that taste horrible together!
posted by FatherDagon at 12:49 PM on July 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


What I would give to know the website traffic for that.
posted by Kitteh at 12:50 PM on July 15, 2015


I've got to say, though, that it really freaks me out to see a spaceship named Rocinante. Have Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck somehow been reading my unpublished fifteen year old stories? ಠ_ಠ

Ooh. Foss-like.
posted by Artw at 12:50 PM on July 15, 2015


Oh man, Flashforward. Fun book, terrible TV series. It was so kill crazy and violent! Not about ideas at all. Kind of like The Event.

But maybe the worst thing Flashforward did was give Robert J Sawyer the idea that he could sell every book to Hollywood. His last couple novels are like extended elevator pitches. The President has brain surgery and gets the memories of a combat vet, but terrorists might have his memories now! There's this private detective on Mars...
posted by Kevin Street at 12:59 PM on July 15, 2015


Aw man, I loved Flash Forward and the first season of Under the Dome. I'm starting to wonder if I have terrible taste in TV. Did anyone see The 4400?
posted by desjardins at 1:07 PM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I feel like Under The Dome, like Heroes, fumbled the chance to be an outstanding (or at least decent) miniseries and went for being a rambling and nonsensical ongoing series instead. And the thing is still rolling somehow!
posted by Artw at 1:11 PM on July 15, 2015


I've got to say, though, that it really freaks me out to see a spaceship named Rocinante. Have Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck somehow been reading my unpublished fifteen year old stories? ಠ_ಠ

They're probably just Rush fans.
posted by The Tensor at 1:14 PM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Oh god, I've just remembered the V revival... I think I lasted about 10 mins of that. Wiki tells me there was a second series... whaa?
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:23 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Humans is a good show with i guess an annoying libertarian streak
posted by angrycat at 1:35 PM on July 15, 2015


I've got to say, though, that it really freaks me out to see a spaceship named Rocinante. Have Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck somehow been reading my unpublished fifteen year old stories? ಠ_ಠ

They're probably just Rush fans.


Jebus, how did I miss that?! That said, the trailers for The Expanse and The Magicians show that SyFy might actually be able to pull off something substantial. Damn, that Magicians trailer just nailed the audition to the college scene.
posted by Ber at 1:35 PM on July 15, 2015


Can't they just bring back something popcorn inducing and easily forgettable like ALF with revamped special effects like JJAbarahmsesque lens flare?
posted by Nanukthedog at 1:45 PM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


The kid from 3rd Rock from the Sun is big right now.
posted by Artw at 1:47 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also the fact that they cast the dude from Chuck, another genre show that had early promise and squandered it starting in Episode 2, doesn't give me much hope for this. "What are two things that were annoying about five to six years ago that no one was that into? Let's put them together."

Jeez, Chuck. The show that could have been great if it had been about Yvonne Strahovski being a funny Australian version of Black Widow.
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:49 PM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


From Reddit: here's what Heroes could have been if there was no writer's strike: Inside the Alternate Ending of "Generations" and the un-produced volume "Exodus."

Basically Peter fails to catch the falling vial of Ashanti virus at the end of episode 211, which leads to a deadly plague outbreak and the quarantining of Odessa. Then the next "volume" is about saving the world from the contagion (instead of just New York), with payoffs for earlier arcs like Peter's trip into the future and much more natural progression for the newly introduced characters. Maya even becomes important to the plot! Then it leads into "Villains" like before, but with the revelation that the Company was way more evil than anyone knew (since they wanted to destroy Odessa) it was supposed to make the villains fighting them halfway sympathetic.
posted by Kevin Street at 1:58 PM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Or they could just make it Carnivale.
posted by Artw at 2:01 PM on July 15, 2015


I've always forgiven Heroes for its descent into crapitude on the basis of the writer's strike. That doesn't make that descent any less lamentable or make anything post season 1 worth watching but it does temper my attitude towards the showrunners and writers. They had an excuse. Most shows start as garbage and don't have the excuse of a strike.
posted by Justinian at 2:04 PM on July 15, 2015


Oh god, I've just remembered the V revival... I think I lasted about 10 mins of that. Wiki tells me there was a second series... whaa?

That was another one I slogged it out with because I had such fond childhood memories of the original. I didn't even make it to the last half of the second season because, much like The Cape, I wondered why I was punishing myself.
posted by Kitteh at 2:14 PM on July 15, 2015


YO DID SOMEBODY SAY V
posted by kittens for breakfast at 2:53 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Nononono... Do that crazy Al Swearengen vs The Butterflies In Medieval Now Times show!
posted by robocop is bleeding at 3:00 PM on July 15, 2015


Basically Peter fails to..

This is the premise of almost all bad episodes of Heroes: Peter fucks up in some way. In the rest, Mohinder fucks up in some way. Either way, the plot could not advance without them acting like idiots.
posted by Ber at 3:03 PM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I've always thought the fundamental reason that "Heroes" went wrong is that the writers and producers forgot that people want to see superheroes doing super-heroic stuff, not just trying to save their own sorry asses.

Yes, there were too many characters, plot threads were started and dropped, etc. and there was way too much Milo Ventimiglia; any time that guy has more than a very minor supporting role in your TV show or movie, it means the production is doomed to fail. But the real problem was that after the whole government-conspiracy-hunting-people-with-powers storyline took over, the titular "Heroes" just weren't very heroic.
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 3:15 PM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


When one of your main characters can pretty much do anything, you've got to get drama out of the edge cases where he fails. Or introduce something like kryptonite to hobble him.

Totally agree with you, Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner. Unfortunately, that de-emphasis on heroics was one of the ways that Heroes was ahead of its time. Now all the comic books heroes act the same way. It would be nice to go back to basics and be heroic again.
posted by Kevin Street at 3:16 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


there was this weird thing where the actors playing Claire and Peter were a couple IRL and then in the show Peter would creepily say to Claire, "I want you to stay innocent" and it was like, come on, show.
posted by angrycat at 3:22 PM on July 15, 2015


You mean there was a season 3 & 4 of Heroes? Circus with magic tattoos? When does Bobby climb out of the shower with a Deatheater?
posted by arcticseal at 4:21 PM on July 15, 2015


I'm kind of appalled that no one has said it yet, so here goes:

Misfits was an infinitely better take on the same premise, and it will not be topped.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:36 PM on July 15, 2015 [11 favorites]


Oh god yes.

I particularly liked the pocket sized micro budget Days of Future Past they managed to pull off.
posted by Artw at 4:38 PM on July 15, 2015


Hey remember the Irish girlfriend that went to the future with Peter but got left there?


Neither did Peter.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 4:56 PM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Did anyone see The 4400?

The writers strike is nothing. That show had to deal with actors who would leave the moment any other opportunity opened up, including fun boat trips.
posted by Gary at 5:33 PM on July 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'd be excited for a Heroes remake if someone who WASN'T Tim Kring was doing it. Seriously?! The guy who fucked it up the first time gets another chance?

grumblegrumblewhere'smyfireflyjoanofarcadiapushingdaisiesanythingelsebutanotherheroesalready
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:04 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


When Peter's Irish girlfriend went the way of Chuck Cunningham (trigger warning: TV Tropes), I knew the show was doomed. Kept watching it, though.
posted by Kevin Street at 7:15 PM on July 15, 2015


They should make a TV series about Highlander. Or a movie sequel.

I guess when I think about it more, though, it's best to just keep it as a one-off, like The Matrix.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 8:14 PM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


But Highlander: the Series really was better than the original movie. At least if you're seeing both for the first time as an adult. (I don't think this holds up for the movie sequels but I'd have to watch them to have an opinion.)
posted by asperity at 8:16 PM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


I'm kind of appalled that no one has said it yet, so here goes:

Misfits was an infinitely better take on the same premise, and it will not be topped.


Can't believe I forgot about that show, which I adored until Nathan left. It was so hard to convince people to watch it because of how much it sounded like Heroes.
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 8:36 PM on July 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Normally I hate the idea but I'm kinda glad that there's going to be an American version of Utopia as they might actually give it a proper ending. (Oh I'll never forgive you for that Channel 4... even though I'm now hooked on Humans.)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:07 AM on July 16, 2015


Misfits was good for the first two seasons, and as much as I like Joseph Gilgun, those remaining series were patchy at best.
posted by Kitteh at 7:17 AM on July 16, 2015


Misfits was definitely a better version of Heroes.

And I'm still iffy on the idea of an American version of Utopia.
posted by Fizz at 7:56 AM on July 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


TBH they are both such UK things that direct U.S. equivalents are difficult to imagine. I hope something good comes out of the remake, but it won't be Utopia.
posted by Artw at 8:00 AM on July 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


For too long there was a place in the back of my mind hung up on the origins aspect of Misfits: a "storm", never explained and seldom mentioned again, which consisted of a crew member throwing blocks of snow at the cast for a minute, IIRC.

Eventually I had to explicitly tell myself that it didn't matter and the writers clearly just didn't want to be arsed with a Sci Fi origins story which would have been digressive: most superhero origins are crap and a lot of times they don't even bother to have one, like in Heroes. After that I was able to get on with enjoying the show.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:07 AM on July 17, 2015


Pretty much all superhero origins amount to that anyway.
posted by Artw at 9:20 AM on July 17, 2015


But it was a radioactive spider/storm/space thing/eclipse/bat/vat/cat/hat wait no the hat was magic and when they put it on his head he began to dance around.

And that was the origin story of Dr. Freeze.
posted by maryr at 9:39 PM on July 20, 2015


The thing that made Misfits so brilliant was the utter non-earthshattering scale of their powers and how it affected their lives. The kids spend almost no time ruminating on their origin and the characters accept and adjust to their powers quickly--no extended garbage about how do they work or what does it all mean. By and large, most of the kids feel no particular responsibility to use their powers for the greater good. Their natural late teens/early 20s self-absorption renders that a nonfactor. As a result, they avoid most of the cliches that make shows about people who get superpowers so tiresome.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:28 PM on July 28, 2015


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