Sci-Fi Sunday (TV): Doctor Who, Chuck, Eureka, TSCC, Daisies, Torchwood, True Blood + more

As we did last week, we will for now on be splitting our weekend Sci-Fi news wrap ups into two articles (one for TV and one for movies). Even most TV seasons are over, we have lots of small screen news, including a new companion for The Doctor, definitive word for Sarah Connor, an update on the future of Chuck, previews of summer shows like Eureka and True Blood, TV Season DVD news and more.  

 

Doctor Who Heading to BBC America, New Companion, Feature Film News + more
BBC America outbid the SCI FI Channel for the US rights to "Doctor Who".  The network will air last year’s Christmas special "The Next Doctor" on June 27th, followed by the four 2009 specials — which feature the final performances of David Tennant as the Doctor — starting with July’s airing of "Planet of the Dead".  The second special "The Waters of Mars" and two as-yet untitled specials will premiere in late 2009 and early 2010 in the states.  Meanwhile, BBC has confirmed that Tennant will guest star on two episodes of the upcoming third season of the spinoff "The Sarah Jane Adventures"BBC has also cast the new companion, relative unknown Karen Gillan.  The actress will co-star with new Doctor Matt Smith when he takes over for the fifth season.  Rounding out this week’s "Doctor Who" news, the BBC has confirmed that they are developing a big-screen version of the franchise (not clear if Tennant, Smith or someone else will star), while Den of Geek reports that a second animated series, titled "Dreamland", will air on Children’s BBC.  The seven 6-minute episodes will feature the voice of Tennant.

The new companion, Karen Gillan

Set images [more at Sky TV]

Summer Glau in Dollhouse?
Joss Whedon told EW’s Michael Ausiello that he’s already talked to Summer Glau ("Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles") about her jumping over to Fox’s "Dollhouse":

"If anybody thinks [bringing Summer onto Dollhouse] hasn’t occurred to me already then they have not met me," he says. "I mentioned it to her before [SCC] was canceled. I was like, ‘You know, we should get you in the ‘house.’ But first we have to come up with something that works."

Whedon insists, however, that were Glau to be cast it would not be as a Doll:

"Summer would be perfect to play an active, but she’s done that [type of role] a lot," he says. "I’d rather see her play someone who talks too much. The most fun I have is when I get somebody who’s good and comfortable at doing something, and then I make them do something else. Summer said to me, ‘I would like to play a normal girl before I die of extreme old age.’"

TSCC Creator Josh Friedman: "The Show is Over"
"Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles"
creator/executive producer Josh Friedman rules out continuing the show via another network or on DVD, at least at the moment [via io9]:

"I know there’s been a lot of talk online about moving the show elsewhere but I’ve said before and I still believe that the show is over. I don’t own it, control it, or have any pull with those who do. James Middleton and I had conversations a while back to do our homework in the case of cancellation and didn’t find anyone receptive to moving it. There has to be a motivated buyer or seller to make it work and currently we don’t have either one."

Friedman also discussed the show’s season two/series finale:

I think the finale can be looked at both as an end and also as a springboard to a new part of the story—that’s what I intended, at least. I wanted to bring an end to many of the questions that I’d raised in the episodes previous but it’s dramatically unsound to try and create a rogue’s gallery of scenes just to check off every narrative box. I knew there was a chance we were being cancelled but I also needed to let the network see where we could take the story if given the chance. So I tried to close one door while opening another. There’s obviously different opinions as to how successful I was hitting that target. But I’m very proud of the episode.

Head on over to io9 to read the rest of the interview.

Bryan Fuller on What To Expect The Last Episodes of Pushing Daisies
"Pushing Daisies"
creator Bryan Fuller talked to SCI FI Wire about what was planned for show’s second season:

"The unfortunate thing about how we were breaking the season was that we were taking a break from the Chuck and Ned central storyline for three episodes to tell an Olive story, to tell an Emerson story, to tell a Lily/Vivian story," Fuller said. "And then with episode 14, open back up the whole thing with Chuck’s father and Ned’s father in a bigger way that was going to be our arc of the back nine of the season, … but we ended up not getting a back nine. So, in an unfortunate way, those elements of Chuck’s father and Ned’s father and the pocket watches, that story is the story that’s going to be continued in the comic book. So we’ll understand all about that, but the three episodes that are about to air I’m really excited about."

The show returned to ABC last night with the episode "Window Dressed to Kill".  It drew a weak 2.35M viewers and a 0.7 A18-49 rating according to preliminary data, down 50 and 56 percent, respectively, from the prior episode (Wednesday, December, 18th: 4.67M viewers, 1.6 A18-49 rating).  Those numbers aren’t all that surprising considering the late Saturday night burn-off.  Two more episodes remain: "Water and Power" (June 6th at 10:00pm) and the series finale "Kerplunk" (June 13th at 10:00pm).  Head on over to SCI FI Wire to read Fuller’s extensive comments on the episodes.

Third Season of Chuck Could Still Run 22 Episodes
NBC Entertainment president Ben Silverman told TV Guide that while the current plan is for a 13-episode third season of "Chuck", the network could pick the show up for a full season — 22 episodes — if it performs well: "we may extend it out and continue it through the summer," adding, "We’re looking to … keep [Chuck] incredibly viral and buzz-worthy until it returns, and then hopefully have it on our air for many years to come." Meanwhile, SCI FI Wire interviewed executive producer/co-creator Chris Fedak and told the site that despite the budget cuts, the producers plan for the entire cast to return.  Here’s another excerpt from the interview:

"We’re actually just getting back up and running with our writers," Fedak said. "So I am knee-deep in the writers’ room, working on story, kind of cutting into how we’re going to tell this epic season of Chuck. … We have some really fun, super-exciting stories up on the board, and we can’t wait to tell them."

Asked about specifics, Fedak isn’t too forthcoming. "You’re getting nothing out of me," he said, adding: "Do you know what Schwartz would do to me if I give you anything? Mum is the word at the moment."

Head on over to SCI FI Wire to read the rest of the interview. And finally, Collider interviewed star Zachary Levi about the second season finale, Subway’s huge role in securing a third season, and more.  Watch it below.

Part 1

Part 2

TV VIDEOS

Eureka

Click the image below to see two clips from the season 3.5 premiere [io9]

Torchwood

"Children of the Earth" Trailer

True Blood

New season two promo

TV BITES

  • The second season of "Merlin" will debut in the UK on BBC One Sunday, June 21st.  That’s the same date as the season one US premiere on NBC. [via TV Squad]
  • Tricia Helfer, Michael Hogan and Mark Sheppard, all from "Battlestar Galactica" fame, as well as "Stargate Atlantis" star Joe Flanigan have signed on to guest star in SCI FI’s upcoming dramedy "Warehouse 13" (which premieres on July 7th). [SCI FI Wire]
  • There’s speculation that Zod may show up in season nine of "Smallville"… [EW]
  • …Meanwhile The CW head Dawn Ostroff is keeping expectations low for its move to Friday night: "I think Smallville will do better [than 2 mil]." Even 3-4M+ viewers on Thursday nights. [TV Guide]
  • "Lost" writer/producer Damon Lindelof says that since they started planning out the final season of the show, the issue that has come up the most relates to reuniting all the castaways. [EW]
  • Javier Grillo-Marxuach, creator of the canceled ABC Family series "The Middleman", has been hired as a writer on NBC’s post-apocalyptic drama "Day One".  Also, check out some new images from the show below. [via io9]


[one more at io9]

DVD/BLU-RAY BOX ART

Coraline (July 21, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD (Single and Two-Disc–includes 2-D and 3-D versions)

 

Blu-ray–includes 2-D and 3-D versions

Dragonball Evolution (July 28, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD (will also be released on Blu-ray)

Fringe: Season 1 (September 8, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD

 

Blu-ray

Heroes: Season 3 (September 1, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD and Blu-ray

Knight Rider: Season 1 (July 28, 2009) [DVD Active]

The Middleman: The Complete Series [Shout! Factoryclick for an article on the evolution of the box art]

Mutant Chronicles (August 4, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD (Single and Two-Disc)

 

Blu-ray

Race to Witch Mountain (August 4, 2009) [DVD Active]

DVD

 

Blu-ray

 

MISC VIDEOS

Batman: Arkham Asylum (Video Game)

E3 trailer

Green Lantern

Fan-made trailer

Heroes

SNL "Jizz in my Pants" Spoof [via Topless Robot]

Hi, I’m a Marvel…and I’m a DC

Wolverine (Deadpool) and Watchmen

Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 (Video Game)

E3 trailer

The Strain: Jail (First volume of Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan’s trilogy of vampire novels)

"The Strain: Jail" trailer

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (Video Game)

"One Shall Stand" trailer

SCI FI RATINGS

CHART (5/18/2009 to 5/24/2009)

Follow Russ on his blog: Your Entertainment Now and on Twitter: Twitter.com/YourEntNow.


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MrData

It’s awesome that Chuck will be back.

Blake Powers

I love summer glau.

After seeing Terminator: Salvation I regret not seeing more than a couple bits of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles.

Lennier

I hope “Warehouse 13” turns out to be a half-decent show.

noirgwio

I was digging SCC… And I think Matt Smith’s 11th Doctor, has a cute new lady friend! Can’t wait to see them in action. And I’m happy Tenant will also be stopping by Sarah Jane’s place… If only we got to see it at the same time in the US as they do in the UK!

noirgwio

Also Chuck rocks! But you knew that… >;-D

Jeffrey S. Nelson

What about Reaper’s third season syndicated Sunday nights as mentioned a few weeks back??

Dom

Really disappointed about TSCC.

Hope the new Doctor Who is better than the last four seasons: stronger story-telling, fewer light entertainment celebs indulging in plotless fluff. Moffat’s written the best new series episodes. Let’s hope his influence refocuses Doctor Who in a more intelligent direction.

Geoffers

How can any one say tyhe last four season of who has been bad?

Here is hoping Tenant is in the cinema film of Who, he is surely the best to date.

Oh well.. at least slating who gives folks a rest from it being Trek…

Spock

Ugh, screw Sarah Connor Chronicles.

Geoffers

Does any one actualy LIKE any of the stuff that is on, either small or large screen… when did this site become “I am going to nit pic every bit of sci-fi.com”

OldDarth

Three cheers for Chuck’s return!

Also interested to see how often Nimoy shows up in next season’s Fringe.

Yeppie for Chuck!!
Yeppie for Chuck!!
Yeppie for Chuck!!

David Tenant was the best doctor ever!

SciFiMetalGirl

I’m grateful that TSCC Creator Josh Friedman was at least was able to explain a little bit about the last episode! It had to have been one of the best/worst season/series finales ever!

ResidentnEvil

#9: “How can any one say tyhe last four season of who has been bad?”

I would never say that. But the last season I could have done without almost entirely, and the first of the specials was barely watchable.

I, personally, can’t wait for Russell to leave the premises. I have nothing but admiration for his re-invention of the franchise, but his level of writing (especially last season’s finale) is starting to border on fanfiction.

paustin

#15 yes the first two specials were crap…and seeing this new very young companion sucks because we already know he will be young. I know Moffat is in charge soon and I’m very excited about that, but I’m just concerned it will become TARDIS 90210

Dom

11. Geoffers

Actually yes, people do like the shows, although no one can like everything. And saying something isn’t reaching its potential isn’t nit-picking: nitpicking is when you complain that Captain Kirk’s sideburns are the wrong colour!

I like Doctor Who, but I don’t think it’s come close to reaching its potential under the outgoing regime. When you strip away the razzle dazzle of a big budget, the new series has rarely reached the intelligence and standard of plotting seen in the best moments of the original show. Remember, the original Doctor Who is a show Harlan Ellison raved about, that Dennis Potter nearly wrote for, that Tristram Cary composed music for. It can be so much more than the rather lowbrow celeb-culture, Big Brother fan’s show that it is right now.

At the moment, it feels like it’s run by a smug bunch of writer drinking buddies from the 1990s Virgin/Big Finish stable, while completely failing to reach out to some top sci-fi and fantasy writers from this country and abroad. Imagine the show with stories written or plotted by Neil Gaiman, Robert Rankin, Iain M Banks, Harlan Ellison, Alastair Reynolds, China Mieville and so on. Hell, imagine any of their short stories being optioned and adapted into Doctor Who stories, just as Star Trek adapted Arena in the 1960s!

MH

17. Agreed.

Though Doctor Who has never been about high brow intellectualism. The secret to its success lies in its ability to balance highly conceptual and socially relevant stories with a bit of irreverence. This recent series, with some exceptions, has gone a bit too far towards the latter IMO. I enjoy it immensely though and have high hopes for Moffet and Co. I’d rather see a series that embraces its own merits and sense of identity than one that loses itself in its own rhetoric (ie. most of the Sci-Fi that has been produced for the past decade.)

Just an opinion.

Kyle Nin

I hope the “Doctor Who” movie covers the Time War. It’s a major event that has only been touched on every now and then. But that would mean that Tennant wouldn’t be in it (unless the movie is a flashback and Tennant is the narrator). But this would also give people the chance to see the Doctor regenerate from his 8th incarnation (Paul McGann) to his 9th (Christopher Eccleston. And they could also bring back Davros and the Master, who were both present during the war.

Dom

19. Kyle Nin

A movie would really need to stand alone, as plenty of people going to a Doctor Who movie wouldn’t know the series. I’d open with a new version of An Unearthly Child with teachers Ian and Barbara investigating a mysterious schoolgirl, with Bill Nighy as the Doctor, and replacing the subsequent caveman episodes with a more grandiose adventure.

Huh. Gotta admit, even though I could pick out about 80 percent of the clips they used, the Green Lantern fan-made trailer was pretty good (notwithstanding the fact they also used the STXI trailer music).

Was that Brendan Frasier? Actually, the more I think about it, he’s got that “fish-out-of-water” sensibility about him that would make a pretty good GL.

Mike Ten

I’m glad BBC America got Doctor Who over Sci-Fi (SYFY now?). At least BBC America doesn’t seem to hack the shows up to fit in all of the Extenze male erection supplement commercials SYFY likes running during prime time shows.

Kyle Nin

#20:

I don’t think that’s a good idea. They should really focus on the more recent characters, ones that current viewers are more familiar with. The Time War is the perfect story to tell, and it connects the old series with the new.

Plus, a story with the first Doctor doesn’t really seem all that exciting. And movies usually need to be more exciting than TV episodes. They can get away with slower stories on a weekly basis, but movies usually only come around every two years or so. And besides all that, I’d rather see something new, not a remake of something old.

#22: “At least BBC America doesn’t seem to hack the shows up to fit in all of the Extenze male erection supplement commercials SYFY likes running during prime time shows.”

When did they start doing THAT?

fred

i agree the time war would make a great doctor who movie. im so glad they have pick up chuck its a wonderfull gem of a show

7 of 69

I just hope DishNetwork gets an HD feed of BBCA before The Doctor makes his debut.

Chris

Second season of Merlin is coming out this FALL in the UK, not this SUMMER. You put in June 21st. Which is a Sunday, for starters, and Merlin comes on Saturdays.

Bob Tompkins

Chuck—-yuck. To think NBC had the choice between renewing this piece of insufferable drek or the far better Journeyman 2 years ago…..

Bad choice NBC, but hey, these are the same people who are writing off the 10- 11PM timeslot every weeknight in favor of Jay Leno primetime. Jay Frakking Leno.

What a way to save a little money.

Drama fans everywhere are in mourning at that move.

Crazy Trek Girl!

EUReKA!!! YAYA!!!!!
:D
!!!!
!!!
!!
!
!!
!!!
!!!!

#21: “Was that Brendan Frasier? Actually, the more I think about it, he’s got that “fish-out-of-water” sensibility about him that would make a pretty good GL.”

Nah, that actor Nathan Fillian from “Desperate Housewives” and more familiar to genre fans in “Firefly/Serenity.”

I don’t believe they have selected an actor yet to play GL, though I like the idea of Bradley Cooper playing him.. not even sure it is concrete that a movie will even be made aside from the DC Comics animated movies (which are quite good).

Have plans for the “Green Hornet” feature film gone dead? I haven’t heard much about it of late (and I think the casting of Seth Rogen is a dubious casting choice at best).

oops.. that should have said… nah, that is actor Nathan Fillian…

(usually I can multi-task better than that…)

Dom

23. Kyle Nin: ‘They should really focus on the more recent characters, ones that current viewers are more familiar with.’

A few UK viewers and a cult fanbase worldwide. Most people aren’t any more familiar with nu-Who characters than the old.

‘The Time War is the perfect story to tell, and it connects the old series with the new.’

No, it doesn’t. What’s Doctor Who about? A man who travels through time and space in a police box, having exciting adventures or an epic sci-fi version of Gotterdammerung? Part of the problem with nu-Who is it’s messianic fervour about the Doctor as a ‘lonely god’! The intergalactic hobo is far more interesting!

Also, you’re making a big assumption that David Tennant, Billie Piper and so on will be ‘familiar’ by the time a Who film gets made: three years from now, there’ll be Matt Smith finishing his second year on the TV show and Stephen Moffat might well have taken the show in a different direction (think how different Phillip Hinchcliffe’s era was from Barry Letts’ or Graham Williams’s was from Hinchcliffe’s.) Believe me, having lived through seven Doctors’ eras, people move on pretty fast!