Categories
Science Fiction TV Shows

Poor state of Science Fiction on TV

Being a fan of science fiction and enjoying many shows on TV such as Star Trek, Babylon 5, Stargate, Fringe and many others I thought I should write some quick comments on some shows that have failed to impress me recently.

Stargate Universe
Having caught on to Stargate SG-1 around season 5 I became fan of this series after one show (Cannot remember which episode). I actively followed Stargate SG-1 and later Stargate Atlantis. When details of Stargate Universe arrived I was not to happy about the new approaches they wanted to take. When I saw the casting list my first thoughts were that this was too many main characters to focus on. For the moment I am watching because it is ‘Stargate’, however if there is not an improvement soon I may have to switch to repeats of SG-1 and Atlantis to get my Stargate fix.
The opening episodes of  Stargate Universe I enjoyed: I enjoyed that those whole episodes could be devoted to simple things other programmes seem to gloss over; issues of air, water and the reality of a door that would not close. When it god bad for me was when they started using the stones to contact people on Earth. Then all of a sudden there was focus on Earth based storylines. Eh! I thought the whole point of getting them stuck on a spaceship galaxies away would have been to explore the human condition in said environment, not body swapping stories with the folks back home.
I enjoyed the episode ‘Time’ as it seemed at last some real story lines were taking place, plus I hoped that Chloe would stay dead. She also got kidnapped by aliens later in the series and yet again I hoped she would not return.
I was a fan of Atlantis and I loved the initial premise of a group of people stuck in another galaxy without contact with Earth. When they made contact with Earth I thought that it would not last, but it worked and I loved the first three seasons. With Universe, you kind of had the same premise in the opening episode, but instead of being on a bright and working technological marvel they found themselves on a dark and broken starship but still managed to phone home to say what was going on.

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Being a fan of the original series I found this hard to relate to. I found it very difficult to make any kind of attachment with the characters and during the first episodes never got any kind of ‘WOW’ factor feeling. I think that in the first episode a reference was made to the film ‘independence day’. Well seeing a spaceship over a city should have been a ‘wow’ moment, but having seen so many spaceships over so many cities in various films and series, that initial reaction was lost. I can see the characters developing but I don’t really give a damn. Which is not good for a TV show that is supposed to be drawing me in. I’m only a few episodes in but I am interested enough to keep watching.

The Prisoner
Not exactly science fiction but I did enjoy the original series. This for me is an utter disaster. I really don’t know where to start on this. Let’s just say that I have three episodes left and I’m not looking forward to them one bit. The constant stream of shocks such as places blowing up, the appearance of grenades and slit throats made no impact for me. The scene of a little girl being sent for ‘treatment’ and her horrified screams just knocked me sick. The only reason I will keep watching is to see what happens but I’m only expecting major disappointment on this one.

Doctor Who – Series 5 (relaunch)
I am mystified as to what has happened here. Compared to recent seasons I have found the delivery poor. For example: The recent two-part story regarding the weeping angles now I think about it sounds great, especially as I think that the Weeping angels when first shown a few years ago delivered a wonderful episode. But watching the episodes I just felt completely detached. I don’t know if it is the acting style, the choice of actors or even the budget cuts which are really apparent in some scenes which is causing the problem. The weakest episode by far for me was the World War 2 episode with the Daleks. The whole episode seemed to be a press release that kids now have different colours of Dalek toys to pester their parents for after the show.

As so not to appear completely negative about every show on TV, I am really enjoying Fringe at the moment. I just which I could add other shows to that list of one.

Categories
Hardware

Blast to the past: My first digital camera – Fujifilm @xia SlimShot

Fujifilm @xia SlimShot
Fujifilm @xia SlimShot

While going through a mass of computer stuff including computer leads, floppy disk drives and even a USB vacuum cleaner, I came across what I think was my first digital camera, the Fujifilm @xia Slim Shot. I liked this camera so much at the time I actually bought another! Featuring a cool 0.3 MP camera, 8MB internal memory and being 6mm thin this camera produced some good pictures in a good light. At one point apparently it was listed in the Guinness World Records™ as the world’s thinnest camera.

Taken with the Fujifilm @xia SlimShot
Taken with the Fujifilm @xia SlimShot

I decided to plug it into my computer to see what happened. As I was not expecting much I was not surprised to see after a quick online search that official support for the camera is non existent and that no drivers would work with my Windows 7 64-bit OS. Then I remembered a feature of Windows 7 which I had a play with a few months back: Windows XP Mode. I fired the Virtual PC mode up, attached the camera so XP could see it and then inserted the installation CD. Using the driver installation window that had popped up I pointed to the folder on the CD containing the XP drivers and away it went. And then surprisingly I was met with success.

Using the pripority Slim Shot Photo Album (No mass storage) I managed to connect up each question in turn and even found photos still on each from ages ago. I was going to take these to the local recycling centre but now thanks to Windows XP Mode I can once again use these old cameras. Now time to stick them in a draw for another 8 years!