SciFi Friday: Freema Agyeman Helps Us Get Over the Loss of Billie Piper, Attempted Surprises, and Top Movies

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We’ve now had three episodes of Doctor Who without Billie Piper, but neither us fans or The Doctor are ready to forget her. The Christmas episode as well as both episodes of the third season have had references to her character, Rose. The Christmas episode, The Runaway Bride, has The Doctor meet Donna, who was a real match him. I don’t think either viewers or The Doctor could take a full season of Donna, but Freema Agyeman as medical student Martha Jones is starting out as a strong companion who is helping many fans forget about the loss of Rose. They meet the first episode of season three in Smith and Jones in which the the hospital where Martha works is transported to the moon to allow aliens to hunt down a fugitive hiding in the hospital. The Doctor is impressed by the strength Martha shows despite the shock of winding up on the moon.

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It appears that one way in which the show was modernized to appeal to television viewers for its revival was to give The Doctor beautiful women for companions. Freema Agyeman has received great reviews as she replaced Billie Piper. While they don’t repeat the sexual inuendo of last season’s opener, Smith and Jones does give The Doctor an excuse to kiss Martha–in order for them to exchange genetic material. The second episode, The Shakespeare Code, even has them in bed together. (Nothing happens–remember, the BBC does clasify this as a children’s show.) Later this season we will see Daleks in Manhattan, and the season is rumored to end with the return of The Master. A couple of trailers for the season are available from the BBC. Bit torrent is needed to download the actual episodes after they air. Note that this week’s episode might be postponed if a soccer game runs over.

Lost increasingly seems to feature characters doing dumb things. I’ve recently commented on Jack ignoring the chance to get information from Cindy and the other tailies. As Locke, who has been blowing up everything in site recently, wasn’t on this episode, it came down to Jack to make the stupid mistake. Did anyone really not see it coming that Juliet is still working with the Others? From the moment we saw that she had the key to the handcuffs, it was pretty obvious that this was all a set up. Despite the obvious “twist” at the end, it was an excellent episode as we saw Juliet’s backstory pick up from from where Not in Portland ended.

The other obvious twist this week was on 24. It took until part way into the episode for me to guess that Wayne Palmer was bluffing about the attack, but the fake rescue of Fayed was obvious from the start. Then again, I was surprised (and a bit relieved) that they wrapped up the suitcase nuke storyline. After they actually had a nuclear bomb go off in the suburbs of Los Angeles in the first episode, all the chases over the bombs were anti-climatic. Even the conflict over the removal of Wayne as President all seemed like something we’ve seen before (as we have with his brother.)

I bet nobody was surprised to find that Audrey was still alive ever since they claimed she was killed looking for Jack in China. Even if this wasn’t planned from the start, once The Nine was yanked we knew she was available again. It is a bit surprising that Jack hasn’t gotten together with his daughter Kim, but after her scenes in recent years this might be for the better.

One thing which will remain a surprise is the ending of the final Harry Potter novel. In The Devil Wears Prada, Ann Hathaway was given the job of getting Meryl Streep’s kids a copy of a Harry Potter book before it was released. In reality, security will be far too tight to pull this off, not to mention the various curses which would be placed upon anyone who violates the security arrangements:

Libraries nationwide have been dealt strict rules regarding author J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.”

Among them: Libraries must limit the number of employees who handle the books before the release and provide names and contact information for each branch manager, according to the contract from Scholastic Inc.

And absolutely no reading ahead…

Failure to keep the novel under wraps until July 21 could mean serious retribution by Scholastic, who “intends to monitor the ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’ … very closely.”

“Any such violation will cause irreparable harm to Scholastic and the author, J.K. Rowling, and that monetary damages will be inadequate to compensate for violations,” the publisher said.

SFX Magazine’s poll of top science friction movies released earlier this year came as a surprise as Serenity came in first. While I liked Firefly, the show upon Serenity was based, I’m not even sure I’d put Serenity in the top ten. The top movies in the survey are:

1. Serenity (2005)
2. Star Wars (1977)
3. Blade Runner (1982)
4. Planet of the Apes (1968)
5. The Matrix (1999)
6. Alien (1979)
7. Forbidden Planet (1956)
8. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
9. The Terminator (1984)
10. Back to the Future (1985)

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15 Comments

  1. 1
    kj says:

    I think Locke has joined the Others and that’s why he wasn’t on last week’s episode, he went with them (where ever they went).

    Wheaton crashed on burned with Firefly, despite its mini-cult status. He took a leap with the dialogue, but instead of creating “Wheaton Verse,” he created the most tortured Civil War era Southern drawl I’ve ever heard. It actually hurt my ears to listen. Ah well, win some, lose some. Joss will rise again. Although no Spike, watching Angel playing a human FBI agent on “Bones” is tiding me over for now. 😉

  2. 2
    Ron Chusid says:

    KJ,

    Locke is with the Others (who also captured his father) but that doesn’t mean he still can’t do something stupid. Actually, going off with the others is in itself something pretty stupid. As much of a pain as they are, they sure seem to have a high casualty rate among themselves.

  3. 3
    kj says:

    Ron,

    I’m thinking Locke has gone over the deep end. He’s gone from faith (in the island), to lack of faith (preventing Echo from entering the number sequence on the computer), to what? a search for absolute power? Is that what he thinks the Others have? Because he certainly doesn’t want to return home and end up back in a wheelchair. Does he want the power that he thinks Henry has?

    And why (tears hair) doesn’t anyone sit Juliet down and ask her some basic questions? Like, how do you know my name, Juliet? ???!!!

  4. 4
    Ron says:

    It is astonishing to me that Blade Runner doesn’t hold the number one spot. When that movie first came out, and I saw it in the theaters while I was in college in Los Angeles, it just blew me away and I thought that they had pretty much nailed the future of that area. (I was wrong, its future likely lies under water…)

  5. 5
    Ron Chusid says:

    kj,

    I’m not sure if Locke’s loss of faith in the importance of putting in the numbers is the same as loss of faith in the island. He saw reason to believe that putting in the numbers was just a dumb experiment as opposed to being important. That’s different from his faith in the island for getting him out of the wheel chair, making him want to remain on the island.

    If he wants to remain on the island permanently, as well as to learn more about the island and have some connection to the rest of the world, it might make sense to remain with the Others. I think it is also a safe bet that this will ultimately backfire against him.

  6. 6
    Ron Chusid says:

    Ron,

    Blade Runner has withstood the test of time and will always be a classic, regardless of whether it gets voted number one. Firefly and Serenity now have a cult following, and may or may not remain on top ten lists. My bet is that over time Blade Runner will be ranked far higher than Serenity.

  7. 7
    kj says:

    Ron, you and JBK should really get together. He still talks about Blade Runner but I barely remember it!

  8. 8
    david christopher miedzianik says:

    todays date: SATURDAY: 16th JUNE 2007: a sign of MODERN TIMES:

    i gave you the darlek after the THREADS, show in here in LONDON remember ????
    i’ve always been a fan of DR WHO since i’ve been a kid:
    i saw THE WHO live in PARIS, FRANCE, on the 6th june 2007:
    bob dylan did the same venue, in PARIS, a few weeks before THE WHO: THE TIMES MUST BE A CHANGIN’. david christopher miedzianik
    cyber-cafe opposite TRAVASTOCK SQUARE: LONDON: 07847607522
    rainmanhallelujah@hotmail.com
    i’m bob dylan’s greatest bbc radio request writer:

  9. 9
    david christopher miedzianik says:

    can i have a SNOG billie ??? as i can’t find a date at present:
    there’s loads, and loads, of DATES in the TARDIS isn’t there ???????????????????????
    david christopher miedzianik say…med-gen-nick:
    cyber-cafe opposite TRAVASTOCK SQUARE: LONDON:
    07847607522 rainmanhallelujah@hotmail.com

  10. 10
    Ron Chusid says:

    David,

    When you first started posting comments from London I almost asked you if you were a fan of Doctor Who. Click on the Science Fiction tag for many more posts on the show, including one about this week’s excellent episode, Blink. The previoius two parter was also excellent, with the last three weeks perhaps being the best ever in the history of the show. It took a long time to surpass the Tom Baker era.

    As with Bob Dylan, I’ve never seen The Who in concert, but I do have several of their albums. I did, however, see The Beatles when they played in Detroit, I believe in 1966.

  11. 11
    david christopher miedzianik says:

    DEAR RON: i’m not really sure how to get back to the USA ???
    as there’s no work, no dinner dates out, wth US woman: the newspaper guy that took me around THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS has now lost his job: and his father has now died: so he’s now through with the newspaper: THE DENVER POST: the local people from the USA blame europeans for taking their red indian land or something ??? so that’s it i can’t get a woman there i can’t get a job there: i’m a very, very, good radio request writer, but it gets me stuff to annoy me, like they send me a coffee mug without any coffee in it: a signed photo instead of a job in a radio studio: its the sort of thing that can turn people to murder, or something, after being a request writer for about the last 36 years or so:
    someone on a local ROCKY MOUNTAIN radio station in IDAHO SPRINGS, COLORADO, gave me a $20 meal voucher: it’s not the stuff to keep you going while it costs about over $100 at least to stay in IDAHO SPRINGS: more like $200, or $300 a week there as you have to eat: a father with a son with ASPERGERS SYNDROME told me how he got about $80 a pop for putting windows in: while i have no job, and no money, coming in there:
    I HAVE MR CLINTONS SIGNATURE ON A PHOTO: but my life hasn’t got much better up to now for it: but it might do because it’s the US elections next year and i think his wife HILLARY is running for his old job ??? so i don’t know ???

    david christopher miedzianik 07847607522
    rainmanhallelujah@hotmail.com say…med-gen-nick

    cyber-cafe opposite TAVISTOCK SQUARE: LONDON:

  12. 12
    Ron Chusid says:

    David,

    I hope you wouldn’t consider murder over such things. It would only make matters worse. I’m sure the radio stations don’t intend to anger you and don’t realize they do. Radio stations typically will only send simple gifts for sending in requests. Lots of places send coffee mugs but I don’t know of anyone who would send it with coffee in it.

    Hillary Clinton is running for President. First they run for the party’s nomination. Hillary is the front runner for that, but nobody knows for sure what will happen as the front runner often winds up losing. If she wins the nomination, then she still has to run against the Republican candidate in the general election.

    I’m afraid that what Hillary does will not have much impact on you in London. Are there any government agencies which might be able to help someone in your situation?

  13. 13
    david christopher miedzianik says:

    i think ALICE COOPER is doing some DR WHO stuff i saw it in a newspaper: david miedzianik: ps: saw ALICE COOPER at SHEFFIELD HALLAM FM ARENA about 2 years ago: no luck today like i’ve said: david miedzianik cyber-cafe: sheffield:

  14. 14
    Ron Chusid says:

    David,

    Thanks for the tip. I just ran a Google search and found this article

  15. 15
    SCI-FI-LONDON-09-FAN says:

    » SciFi Friday: Freema Agyeman Helps Us Get Over the Loss of …: April 13th 2007 at 9:42 pm. I think Locke h… http://bit.ly/9LbYEo #sfl9

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