Thursday, July 19, 2018

Favorites - Planet of the Apes Movies: Least Favorite to Favorite - Part 1

Well, this was definitely a long time coming. Years ago, I decided to quickly browse over the original Planet of the Apes movies. Rise of the Planet of the Apes was just about to be released. I also remember an old friend who really liked the movies… sigh. Now, that’s someone I’d like to forget about. Anyway, my overview of the movies wasn’t all that great. Those were the first movies I ever talked about on the blog and I was still improving the in this writing thing. I always wanted to revisit that post since, at that time, I hadn’t seen the movies in years.

Now that the newer POTA movies have been released, I think it’s finally time to rank these things from least favorite to most favorite. I’m saying least favorite because even when the movie or show is bad, you can still find something worthy in it. This time, I’ve re-watched all of the original movies, the newer movies, that Tim Burton thing, and the TV shows. I did think about including the TV shows with this list, but this thing’s going to be long enough without them. Besides, I’ll just tell you now that I’d rather watch some of those episodes more than a couple of these movies. With all that said, I’ll get to it.

Friday, July 13, 2018

TV Talk - The Planet of the Apes TV Shows

Well, after some time away from the keyboard, I’m back. I was going to first do a post involving the Planet of the Apes movies, but I’ve decided to make a quick pit-stop. As I said in my look at the POTA short story collection, there were two Planet of the Apes TV shows in the 1970’s. After the last movie, the franchise was far from over. The first three movies were being aired on TV, so the Apes were still kicking in some form of fashion. The rights for the franchise were handed over to 20th Century Fox, so they tried to churn a lot of stuff out.

The first series was the live action show. Planet of the Apes aired between September and December of 1974. Only 14 episodes were produced. Instead of continuing the story from the movies, the series was pretty much a revamp of the concept. Two human astronauts, Alan Virdon (Ron Harper) and Peter Burke (James Naughton), somehow end up transported from 1980 to 3085. They land on Earth which has been taken over by apes with humans (speaking by the way) being slaves. Luckily, Virdon and Burke have help from a cool chimpanzee named Galen (Roddy McDowell). The series revolves around the three on the run from Doctor Zaius and General Urko (Mark Lenard).

The cartoon series, Return to the Planet of the Apes, aired between 1975 and 1976. 13 episodes were only done for the show. Like the live-action show, this show was pretty much a revamp of the concept. Unlike the other show and the movies, this show immediately went places where the others didn’t. It borrowed elements from the movies and the 1956 novel. On the show, three astronauts (Bill Hudson, Jeff Allen, and Judy Franklin) get transported from 1976 to 3979. The three then have to deal with threats coming from the apes and other forces in the world. Luckily, they have help from kind apes like Cornelius and Zira.

Monday, June 18, 2018

TV/Movie Talk - Battlestar Galactica: Razor

Wow, and I thought I was done with Sci-fi Month. Yes, it’s a return to the revamped Battlestar Galactica. Since I finished reviewing Season 3 last month, I’m nearing the end of my retrospective. Before I get to Season 4, I did have one place to stop at.

While I liked Season 3, I gotta admit that it wasn’t the show at its best. Apparently, someone thought the same thing because it was a year before we got Season 4. If you think waiting for Game of Thrones was horrible, try this. Since Season 3 ended the way it did, it was decided to do a stand-alone, made-for-TV movie. It would air on Sci-Fi and then get released a few days later on DVD. Ron D. Moore, the show’s executive producer, was definitely for this because it’d mean that NBC Universal would help fund the production. I remember seeing most of this when it aired in 2007 and I just recently re-watched it.

Instead of taking place during Season 3, Razor goes back in time on us. We go back to Season 2 and see what happened when Lee Adama took command of the Pegasus. We never knew how his time as commander went since it was right before Season 2’s finale. Things are pretty much the same. Starbuck’s still around and not too annoying, Tigh hasn’t lost his eye yet, and Athena (Helo’s Number 8) is still a prisoner. It’s a fun time, ain’t it? So, what happens when most of the main cast is forgotten about and the rest of the time is saved for a new character, flashbacks, and a nod to the original show? Something kind of cool.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Book Review - Foundation

And now, I end Sci-Fi Month… On June 8th. Maybe saving a 300-page novel for last wasn’t a good idea. It’s especially a problem when that novel isn’t one you can just breeze through. To the three (or four) of y’all out there, I’m sorry. Things are fine. I just had other stuff getting in the way and reading a novel got put on the backburner. Luckily, I’ve gotten to the end and can finally talk about some Asimov. It was either this or A Scanner Darkly and something tells me that Dick’s novel about drug use would have been a bit depressing.

I don’t remember when I first heard about Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series. It was probably when I read I, Robot. I know SFDebris has talked about it as well, so it could have been there too. I’m not so sure. I do know that it’s been one series that’s been on the backburner of novels I’ve acquired over the years. I have a couple of other Foundation books at the house. Now that I’ve read this, maybe I’ll finally get to those.

Foundation as a whole was released in 1951. Before that, four of the five stories were released in Astounding Science Fiction throughout the 1940’s. Asimov essentially wanted to do a story about a declining Galactic Empire. It was supposed to mirror the fall of the Roman Empire. Each story looks at events that occurred before and during the Empire’s fall. It centers on the Foundation, a group led by Hari Seldon in order to preserve the best of what the Empire was.

Writer: Isaac Asimov

BRIEF BLURB: This chronicles the events of the Foundation, a institute created to preserve the best of the galaxy as the Galactic Empire falls.