SciFi Weekend: Agent Carter; Mr. Robot; Supergirl and The Flash; TV Renewals; Malevolent

Agent Carter Hollywood Ending

Agent Carter recently concluded its second season, showing once again the advantage of telling a self-contained story over a short season. Whitney Frost made a great villain for the season, with the dark matter providing a strong science fiction aspect. Other highlights of the season include meeting Jarvis’s wife and the return of Dotty. Howard Stark was also used well, just appearing enough to spice up some episodes. Peggy’s love life also attracted a lot of buzz.

The season finale provided an excellent Hollywood Ending which tied up the plot lines of the season and, other than for a cliff hanger at the very end, would make a satisfactory series finale if it comes to this. Major spoilers ahead.

Entertainment Weekly discussed the finale, and some questions left open, with executive producers Michele Fazekas and Tara Butters:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Why did you kill off Jack Thompson?!
We did not kill off Jack Thompson, we shot Jack Thompson.

In the chest!
Yup, that was the intent. We shot him. Honestly, he might not be dead, and that’s what we as writers have said, and that’s what we told Chad. That’s the truth.

Let’s talk about the person who may or may not have killed Jack. Is it someone we know? Are they connected to the Council of Nine?
It’s unrelated to the Council of Nine. It is not for the reasons that you’d expect. It’s unrelated to Council of Nine, Zero Matter, any of that.

Purely related to the file?

This file reveals Peggy’s exploits with the S.O.E. and some kind of massacre. Thompson thought it was too good to be true, ultimately, and it didn’t seem to affect Peggy when he mentioned it. What’s really going on here?
You have to pay really close attention to what exactly we showed that was in the file. You see that there was some sort of massacre, and I would say, don’t make assumptions by what you see in that file. We were really specific about what information was given for a reason.

Later in the interview:

Turning to Whitney Frost, why did you ultimately decide to have her go crazy? And is that the last we’ve seen of her?
: I hope not. I hope we get to bring her back. She was delicious.
FAZEKAS: We probably don’t exactly tell that story again, but I loved working with Wynn. We didn’t want to kill her off. The Zero Matter, all along, had this increasing affect on her, where it was driving her mad. That felt like the organic way to end that story, because we didn’t start out that way, but boy did she end up that way. That was a direct result of Zero Matter.
BUTTERS: There was a little Frances Farmer connection of Old Hollywood taking its toll. I like her being a rogue’s gallery for Agent Carter, people who can come back like Dottie (Bridget Regan).
FAZEKAS: I really like how sad I feel for Ken Marino. Oh, Manfredi still loves her!

In the closing moments of the episode, Peggy is torn between New York and Los Angeles. Are you already thinking about whether you would keep the show in L.A. or whether you’d move the setting back to New York in season 3?
The nice thing is you can put the show anywhere, because it’s spies. We loved doing L.A. If I had a choice between doing New York and L.A. again, I’d pick L.A. But London has been dropped. It’s all going to be determined by what story we want to tell. I loved L.A. I loved how it looked, I loved how it looked on Peggy. We would be very happy to do another L.A. season, but we’re not married to it.

Haley Atwell Hollywood Ending

Haley Atwell has also discussed the finale, and the question of who Peggy Carter will ultimately marry:

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How do you feel about Peggy and Sousa finally making a go of it?
I’m so happy! I love Sousa! I think what makes it work is that she saw something in him that’s the same quality she found attractive in Skinny Steve (Chris Evans), which was a man with great morals dealing with very real physical hardships. In the workplace, her gender is considered a disability. Sousa has a disability from the war, and therefore has to deal with that limitation. Because he deals with it with such dignity in the way that Skinny Steve did, that’s what attracts her to people. I think it’s inevitable that they end up together. He’s not intimidated by her. He respects her and admires her, and supports how brilliant she is and how good she is at her job, and is not threatened by that. I think that’s a bloody hard thing for men in the 1940s to not be intimidated by. He’s pretty special in that regard.

Do you think Sousa could be the husband that Peggy was talking about in Captain America: Winter Soldier?
I don’t know, because she says that Captain America saved her husband. It could be that what we don’t know yet is that in the war, at one point, Steve Rogers did save Sousa, and Sousa wasn’t telling me or didn’t know it at the time. Or they embark on a fabulous love affair, but then they realize they’re really bad at domestic chores and that they can’t compromise on who washes the dishes and they decide to go their separate ways. That’s a possibility, too. I like to think that this is the start to a beautiful relationship.

How do you think Peggy will handle Thompson’s potential death, especially since it’s happened because of that file?
She has an interesting relationship with Thompson. I think she deals with him with a bemused tolerance. I think she sees his façade and she understands why a lot of his bravado and his need to be liked and approved comes from, because he’s harboring a very guilty secret about his past that he confided in her in season 1. She’s not a dismissive person. She’s quite tolerant of people. She’s quite patient and wants to appeal to the good in him. Planting that seed in him is her hope that he will continue to be a good man. So to lose him, I think she would grieve, but it’s not the same. I don’t think she would regard him as a friend. He’s not someone that can be trusted. She suspects that he’s capable of making really bad decisions, but not malicious ones. I can imagine that he would get blinded by Vernon Masters, Whitney Frost and power, but she has sympathy toward that rather than sees that as something bad in him.

How much do you actually know about this file that discusses Peggy’s exploits with the S.O.E. and a massacre? Peggy seemed to dismiss it before, but do you know what’s really going on there?
James D’Arcy is so nosy, so he went sniffing around the writers’ room trying to figure it out. He finally found out what the secret was, and then on the last day he ran up to me and told me. I do know what that secret is. It’s really exciting, and it changes a lot. It basically gives us our core for season 3 if we were to go to a season 3. It’s really amazing, but I don’t want to get too excited about it in case we don’t get picked up again, so I can’t really say anything. Or it might get picked up in a couple years. I’m sworn to secrecy on it, but it’s really clever. Those clever writers!

Word as to whether there will be a third season is expected in May, but it appears Haley Atwell is interested despite working on another pilot. Even if she is busy with other projects, perhaps the series can be kept alive with fewer episodes to make it feasible.

Mr Robot s01e03

It appears that Mr. Robot will remain topical next season with encryption becoming a major subject. Deadline reports:

Mr. Robot showrunner Sam Esmail insisted at SXSW today that he’s no “fortune teller,” even though the show’s first season went into production just as a massive post-Snowden national debate about surveillance and the collusion between government and big business flared up. In any case, his luck continues, with the USA Network show’s second season heading into production with a storyline about privacy and encryption just as the FBI and Apple are having a very public fight about access to private iPhone user data.

“What’s weird is that we were really going into [Season 2] talking about encryption and privacy,” Esmail said during a SXSW show panel titled “Coding on Camera: Mr. Robot and Authenticity on TV.” “And then this whole thing with Apple and [CEO] Tim Cook happened.”

Esmail said he thinks the difficult-to-grasp real-life issue will play out over the next decade, with public discourse over the idea of a right to privacy. “Do we have that, do we not?,” he asked.

Is Mr. Robot meant to be a straight-up polemic? “I don’t know if it’s to make commentary, but it’s to bring it up and have a conversation,” Esmail explained later, offering as an example “the Apple/FBI thing. … We talked to our FBI consultants about this, and their view is that encryption should allow for this sort of third-party side-door thing.”

Esmail says he’s “totally opposed” to that. “I’m on Tim Cook’s side,” he said, a line that unsurprisingly got huge cheers from the SXSW room. Ultimately, he says, “if you keep breaking [the issue] down in a credible way and if you show both sides so that the audience can understand the debate, hopefully it gets people interested and invested in wanting to learn more about it. If our show contributes to that conversation, brings that conversation up again,” then he’s happy with the reception.

There will also be a lot more on Evil Corp. as two characters have been promoted to series regulars. From TVLine:

The acclaimed USA Network drama has promoted Stephanie Corneliussen (who recently guested on Legends of Tomorrow) and Michael Cristofer to series regular status for the sophomore run, as Joanna Wellick and Phillip Price. They join the previously announced Grace Gummer, who will be playing an FBI agent investigating the Evil Corp. hack.

Supergirl Flash

CBS has released the above promotional picture and a synopsis for the upcoming Supergirl/Flash crossover (and Glee reunion):

Kara gains a new ally when the lightning-fast superhero The Flash (Grant Gustin) suddenly appears from an alternate universe and helps Kara battle Siobhan, aka Silver Banshee, and Livewire in exchange for her help in finding a way to return him home.

I can recall old DC covers with Superman racing the Flash but I’m not aware of whether Supergirl ever raced him. With CBS not having the television rights to Superman, several story lines and other aspects of Superman have been used in Supergirl–similar to how Arrow borrows from Batman.

The CW has renewed its lineup shows, including several genre shows. Renewed shows include:

Arrow (season five), Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (season two), Legends of Tomorrow (season two), The Flash (season three), iZombie (season three), Jane the Virgin (season three), The Originals (season four), Reign (season four), Supernatural (season 12), The Vampire Diaries (season eight) and The 100 (season four).

USA Network has announced that the eighth season of Royal Pains, which starts on May 18, will be the final season.

Netflix will release the second season of Daredevil on March 18 and Luke Cage will be released on September 30.


Malevolent is requesting assistance to get out this animated horror movie, which has quite an impressive cast:

  • Morena Baccarin (Deadpool, Gotham, Firefly)
  • Ray Wise (Twin Peaks, Robocop, Agent Carter)
  • Bill Moseley (The Devil’s Rejects, Texas Chainsaw Massacre II)
  • Rising star Dani Lennon (Bite Me)
  • William Shatner (Star Trek, Boston Legal)

MALEVOLENT is about a young woman named Miriam DeKalb (Dani Lennon, FearNet/Machinima’s BITE ME) who works for a non-profit which promotes global peace initiatives. When her billiionaire sociopath father Cyrus (Ray Wise) learns he is dying, Cyrus calls Miriam and her three siblings together to “discuss his will.” However, what he actually has planned is to pronounce judgment on them all. They are, in his view, traitors, and he has grisly death traps planned for each of them.

The wrinkle: a race of intergalactic gamblers, who wager on human conflicts as bloody sport, have chosen Miriam as their protagonist for this match. Thus the entire situation is being manipulated by the Gamemaster (Morena Baccarin,) who has the power to reverse time and reconfigure events as they play out. And so the playing field is constantly changing under Miriam’s feet — sometimes to her benefit, but usually, not. Through it all, The Overseer (William Shatner) calls the game.

SciFi Friday: Lost Spoilers; Star Trek and Boston Legal; Kristen Bell as Princess Leia Slave Girl; and Respecting Jessica Simpson


Lost returns on January 31 and will air Thursdays at 9 pm. The video above shows a trailer for the upcoming season and gives a (very slight) hint regarding the cliff hanger from last season. Charlie is also seen, but considering he is dead I suspect this is some sort of vision. More spoilers regarding the Oceanic 6 are available here for those who want further clues as to the direction the show might be going.

Boston Legal must have set the record for the most appearances by actors and actresses who have appeared in any of the versions of Star Trek. William Shatner isn’t going to be the only starship captain on the show as Scott Bakula (Enterprise) will be making a guest appearance. A comprehensive guide to the cross overs between Star Trek and Boston Legal is available here. Bakula also appeared as Murphy Brown’s love interest in 1993 and he will be appearing with Candice Bergen during this guest appearance. Boston Legal’s season ends December 14 due to the strike.

If Boston Legal likes everything Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica really likes Bajorans. After giving a prominent guest appearance to Michelle Forbes in the episodes involving the Pegasus, as well as in the made for television movie Razor, another former Star Trek actress who played a Bajoran will appear next season. Nana Visitor (Kira Nerys on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine) will play Emily, a cancer patient who Laura Roslin gets to know in sickbay. More information on the upcoming season of Battlestar Galactica is available here.

The scenes of Princess Leia as a slave girl in Return of the Jedi has been a major fantasy for geeks for the last generation. (Photo of the original in this previous post.) Kristen Bell has recreated this image for her role in Fanboys, with two pictures above.

In researching this post (tough job, somebody’s got to do it) I also discovered that Olivia Munn of G4’s Attack Of The Show also did the Leia slave girl thing last spring (pictured above).

And, finally, Female First reports that Jessica Simpson is desperate to be respected as an actress and has found a role which she believes will grant her this:

Jessica is in the running for a role that, if she gets it, will put her right on the map in terms of acting. The only hitch is that the script requires a number of quite graphic scenes including a full-frontal nude scene. Jessica is so desperate to land the role and get the industry’s respect that she’s ready to go against her better judgement, and her family, by agreeing to bare all.

Yes, Jessica, do it. I promise to respect you if you do.

SciFi Friday: More Heroes Cast Additons, Doctor Who, and Jerry Was a Man

The cast of Heroes has been expanded for next season to include the population of the planet Earth. Ok, that might be an exaggeration, but they sure are adding a lot of cast members. At one time Boston Legal appeared like a home for former Star Trek cast members in having both William Shatner and Rene Auberjonois (Odo) in the regular cast along with Armin Shimerman (Quark) appearing in an arc. Next season only Shatner will remain as a regular, but Heroes is moving well beyond Boston Legal’s record. Heroes started with George Takei (Sulu) last season and then actually made their own Star Trek star when Zachary Quinto (Sylar) was chosen to play Spock in next year’s Star Trek movie. Next season Heroes is also adding Nichelle Nichols (Uhura) and Dominic Keating (Malcolm Reed from Enterprise).

I’ve already posted on the addition of Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars). Heroes will also be adding a second former star of Alias, David Anders (Sark), to join Steve Grunberg. Other additions include Stephen Tobolowsky of Deadwood and Jessica Collins of The Nine.

With all these additions to the cast of Heroes, The Boston Globe asks if the show is overreaching.

USA Today has interviewed Zachary Quinto regarding his upcoming role as Spock. Quinto appears to verify rumors that the movie will take place before the events of the original television show:

“I really identify with Spock’s struggle,” he says. “We’re going back to a time before anything (Nimoy did in the original series) was established. These characters are in a completely different stage of their lives.”

Heroes isn’t the only show to make news with new cast members this week. I’ve recently posted on the controversial addition of Janeane Garofalo to the cast of 24.

Doctor Who might be having an old cast member joining for an episode next season. While it is unconfirmed, Sylvester McCoy, who played the seventh Doctor, apparently let it slip that Peter Davision, the fifth Doctor, will be appearing in a multi-doctor episode. As time travel is an integral part of the show, it has long been a staple to have periodic episodes in which several different versions of The Doctor meet each other.

This week SciFi Channel shows Human Nature, the first part of one of the best episodes of Doctor Who ever produced. I’ll avoid any spoilers for those who have not seen both parts of this story this yet. (I have previously discussed both parts of this two-part episode here for those who have already seen them).

The third of four episodes of Masters of Science Fiction last week featured an adaptation of a short story by Robert A. Heinlein, Jerry Was A Man. The original story dealt an attempt by a genetically modified chimpanzee to achieve human rights. The story was altered to deal with a robotic being which also contains a small amount of human DNA. Instead of a serious story on human rights, the episode was played largely as a comedy decreasing its impact. Star Trek: The Next Generation handled this topic much better when Data went on trial to argue that he was not property which could be disassembled. With some believing we might have the potential to develop intelligent self-aware robots in the foreseeable future, the issue of robot rights has received serious attention.

With so much to watch, and much of it available on high definition television, those regular DVD’s just are not looking as great as they did when the format was new. I’ve held off on going to a high definition disc format to see how the war between HD DVD and Blue-ray would pan out. There were developments this week when Panasonic and Dream Works went with HD DVD and Fox went with Blue-ray. Unfortunately this only confuses the matter even more.

SciFi Friday: Cast Changes From Boston Legal to 24, Harry Potter Hacked, and Upcoming Shows

This week there’s a lot of news about casting, including characters coming back to shows next season and characters who are leaving.

While some shows such as Battlestar Galactica, 24, Lost, Jericho and will wait until mid season to start, Heroes is going the reverse route. They are going to end early, after a full twenty-four episode run, in order to show the Origins anthology series. This will run for six weeks from mid-April thru May and feature a different new superhero each week. Tim Kring has also stated that, while there will be breaks between new episodes, there will not be a long break as there was last year.

There has been no official announcement as to who will be back, but blogs covering the press conference have provided some hints. Greg Grunberg (Matt) let it slip out that he’s back at work on filming the second season. Hiro is returning, and will remain in feudal Japan for several episodes. The Petrelli brothers look different after that explosion. Milo Ventimiglia’s hair is extremely short, and Adrian Pasdar has grown a beard.

There will be major cast changes on 24, which no longer will take place at CTU in Los Angeles. Besides Kiefer Sutherland, it is possible that only Mary Lynn Rajskub (Chloe) will return, but once again the President will play a part in the plot. Ausiello reports that there will be a new President who might be a woman.

Boston Legal also plans major casting changes, and will be down to only one former Star Trek character in the regular cast. Rene Auberjonois (Odo of Deep Space Nine) will be leaving, along with Mark Valley,Julie Bowen, and Constance Zimmer. As has happened in past seasons, some of these may return for an occasional episode. John Larroquette and Tara Summers will be joining the cast . Christian Clemenson (Jerry Esperson) will be made a regular member of the cast.

Looking ahead, this weekend we will finally see what Mr. Saxon is up to in England on Doctor Who. I previously reviewed last weeks episode, Utopia, here. The episode was not as good as the previous three episodes, but it would have been difficult to sustain that quality. Although the show initially seemed like a run of the mill episode (except for the return of Captain Jack), the payoff at the end turned it into another excellent episode. With this one as a start, it appears that Doctor Who is set to end the season with a strong two part follow up.

For those who haven’t seen it, Jericho will be replayed starting July 6. They will show the first episode, a mid-season recap episode, and then episodes 13-22. If you plan to start watching the show, I’d suggest catching the first twelve episodes which are available for view on line. While the later ones pick up the story leading to the season finale, in many ways the earlier episode which dealt with more day to day life were better.

The creators of the Masters of Horror series on Showtime are making Masters of Sci-Fi which will be an anthology series written by science fiction authors. ABC has ordered six episodes but currently only plans to show four starting in August. They are scheduled to air at 10 p.m. on Saturday nights, which doesn’t give the show a very good chance.

While there’s little to watch on television until fall, there’s always plenty to read. It’s not long until the final Harry Potter book is released. Despite all the security surrounding the book, a hacker claims to have hacked into her publisher’s computer and obtained a copy. He has posted what he says are key plot points. Of course we have no way to know if they are accurate, and even if they are I wouldn’t want to spoil the end of both the novel and the series. As curious as we are, I would think that most fans would prefer to find out how it ends as we read the book.

President Palmer Defends Obama

TV Squad quotes DB Woodside, who plays President Wayne Palmer on 24 as being supportive of Barack Obama:

Woodside also said he thinks comparisons between the fictional Wayne Palmer and the real-life presidential campaign of Illinois Senator Barack Obama are “unfair.” Admitting that Wayne Palmer is untested and not very commanding, he told the magazine that Obama is just the opposite and is “the most exciting candidate to come on the scene in my lifetime.”

I’ve already noted that The West Wing may have helped Bill Richardson by giving us a hispanic president as the series ended. 24 has now had two black presidents and Commander-In-Chief had a woman President possibly making Obama and Hillary Clinton appear more plausible as presidents. (Or is 24 trying to sell us on the idea of a brother of a former president, considering what we know about the conservative bias of some of the creators of the show?)

You have to feel sorry for John Edwards who is placed at a disadvantage by television portrayals of people like his opponents as president. People just might not take his campaign seriously, as they have trouble seeing a trial lawyer as president. Perhaps Boston Legal will quickly have Denny Crain get elected president.

Tuesday Night Television Controversy Part II: Boston Legal

Boston Legal was the second show Tuesday night which touched on controversial issues (with Veronica Mars discussed in the previous post.) Judge Clark Brown (Henry Gibson) hires Denny, who brings in Alan and Bethany, to sue a company which promised to cure him of his same sex attraction by religious indoctrination. Judge Brown is suing because the treatment didn’t cure him of his homosexuality, and included one of Alan Shore’s weekly soap box closing arguments, this time with soap box actually included. Besides getting a chance to criticize treatment of homosexuality by the right wing, Alan managed to also get the opportunity to mock pharmaceutical industry invented diseases such as restless leg syndrome.

ABC got a lucky break to make the episode appear more relevant as headlines earlier in the day proclaimed that Haggard says he is “completely heterosexual” AP reports:

One of four ministers who oversaw three weeks of intensive counseling for the Rev. Ted Haggard said the disgraced minister emerged convinced that he is “completely heterosexual.

Haggard also said his sexual contact with men was limited to the former male prostitute who came forward with sexual allegations, the Rev. Tim Ralph of Larkspur told The Denver Post for a story in Tuesday’s edition.

This sounds like an even bigger con than the one on Boston Legal with Ted Haggard now looking like the witnesses who claimed they were cured by the program (with Alan expressing skepticism over their long term prognosis). Andrew Sullivan notes the contradiction between the claims of sexual contacts with only one man and the statements that Haggard was treated for “sexual addiction.” Sullivan concludes:

And so the psychological and spiritual abuse that Haggard has imposed on others and is now imposing on himself continues for another cycle of denial and pathology. And that is what, sadly, a great deal of Christian fundamentalism is caught up in: a vortex of denial of reality and rigid psychological resistance to self-acceptance. It is, in my view, a fear-gripped rejection of the beneficence and compassion of God, not an openness toward the divine. It’s a therapy that is actually an illness. And Haggard is getting sicker.

Another story line on the show was also somewhat controversial. I won’t get into summarizing the details, but for those who watched I was also bothered by having the girl’s father also fill the roles of both treating psychiatrist and expert witness. The father should not have been treating a family member in making such a controversial decision, and, while I am certainly not an attorney, I question whether he’d also be allowed to testify as the expert witness.

Many aspects of this episode were also troubling to Sister Toldjah which calls this Liberal propaganda at its worst. They also make a point of linking to further examples of liberal propaganda on the show, which is hardly necessary. I don’t think anyone would deny the liberal bias of the show, however bias on an entertainment show isn’t of much concern. It’s not like they are pretending to be a fair and balanced news network. If Sister Toldjah is bothered by this episode, I suggest that they just take some Propranolol and forget about it.

Tuesday Night Television Controversy Part I: Veronica Mars

Tuesday night television hit a couple of controversial subjects tonight. Think Progress caught a significant error in the online description for Veronica Mars. The show’s description states that a classmate hires Veronica after someone “secretly slipped her the morning after pill, causing her to have a miscarriage.” Amanda at Think Progress was justifiably concerned that young women watching the show would receive the false impression that Plan B, commonly referred to as the morning after pill, causes miscarriages when its effect is actually to reduce the risk of abortion by up to 89%. Plan B works by delaying or preventing ovulation, interfering with fertilization, and it may inhibit implantation by altering the lining of the uterus. It has no effect once the process of implantation has begun and does not cause miscarriages.

The show itself was more accurate than the web description. I have not seen the shown yet, but those who have watched and commented report that the show made it clear that RU-486 was used and not Plan B. Hopefully the on-line description will also be corrected to prevent misconceptions (no pun intended).

While I didn’t get to my recording of Veronica Mars tonight, I did catch the earlier hour on CW. There was a less controversial medical error on Gilmore Girls as Richard Gilmore had a Myocardial Infarction. Richard first received underwent a cardiac catheterization and subsequently was rushed for emergency bypass surgery. Both were done by the same physician when in reality a cardiologist would have handled the initial work up, including cath, and a cardiac surgeon would be consulted if surgery was found to be necessary. (Also on this episode, Richard looked remarkably well so soon after the surgery, and they sure are turning Christopher into a jerk.)

The blurring of specialties is not uncommon for television. I also didn’t get to Tuesday’s episode of House yet, but if I did I’m sure that I would have seen House and his staff perform procedures done by a wide variety of specialties in a hospital which appears to be limited to House’s group, an Oncologist, and a Physician/Administrator.

While I didn’t get to Veronica Mars or House, besides Gilmore Girls we did watch Boston Legal. To be continued.

More discussion of Veronica Mars at Feministing, Reproductive Rights Blog, Bitch Ph.D. and Echidne of the Snakes.

SciFi Friday

Heroes, which leads the ratings among SF shows, has joined shows such as Lost and Jericho to go on a hiatus after a cliff hanger. Poor Milo Ventimiglia. After playing the bad kid on Gilmore Girls and American Dreams, it looked like he was going to be a clear cut good guy as a hospice nurse. Then Peter Petreli was temporarily arrested after the attacks on the cheerleaders, and then we learn he has a quite explosive fate.

When Lost returns it will be moved to 10:00 to keep it from getting lost in the ratings against American Idol. Daybreak is to be moved due to low ratings, but hopefully the remainder of the series will be shown at some other time. One reason I decided to watch was the assurances that there was going to be a resolution of the mystery after thirteen episodes, while who knows if shows like Lost will ever have a rational resolution.
Normally I’d probably overlook a miniseries such as this on the SciFi Channel, but The Lost Room does star Peter Krause (Six Feet Under and Sports Night). Sci Fi Wire has some information on the show.

TrekToday reports that G4 is will be broadcasting Star Trek: The Next Generation in January in the same manner they handled Star Trek, including every bit of trivia they can think of. This includes the Picard Maneuver:

Among the statistics that will be calculated for the series are the “Picard Maneuver” — in which crewmembers tug their uniforms to straighten them — and “Data Saves the Day.” A few original series stocks will carry over to The Next Generation‘s Spock Market, including communicators and transporters, but many new ones will be introduced, including most of the major characters and the Borg Collective.

Boston Legal has had yet another former actor for Star Trek. This week Allan Shore faced opposing council played by Michelle Forbes (Ro Laren). Alan defended a right wing racist couple from a paternity suit over their twins, modeled white nationalist singers Lamb and Lynx Gaede. It was another episode in which they have Allen defending some aspects of conservativism for variety from his usual cases. In this case it was simple. No matter how vile the songs the twins were singing, and how vile the information they were being taught at home, there was still no justification for anyone else to seek custody. The writers didn’t seem to think that this was enough for Allan to fight for so they threw in the national security argument which was totally superfluous to the real issue here. It would have better to save Allen’s objection to the over-use of national security for another case. Another case on this week’s Boston Legal acted to glorify frivolous suits. A widow wants to sue God because her husband was hit by lightening while talking on a cell phone. They wound up hitting up the cell phone company, which paid off to keep the case out of court.

Facing The Reality of Big Love

Liberal support for gay marriage creates a dilemma when confronted by those who advocate legalization of polygamy. Most of us outside of Utah probably gave little consideration to the issue until it became popularized on HBO’s Big Love. Big Love, as well as an episode of Boston Legal last season, present polygamy sympathetically and raised the question of whether this is yet another case of needing to keep the government out of people’s bedrooms.

The Washington Post looks at the fight by polygamists to gain acceptance and legality. It it was simply a matter of privacy in the bed room there would be little controversy. After all, if a few adult women decided to shack up with one man it might raise some eye brows but very few would see any justification for government intervention. Divorce but continued cohabitation was the proposed solution on Boston Legal.

While I am reluctant to make decisions about a complex issue based upon a television show, Big Love does show both the positive and negative sides of polygamy. On the one hand, the main family on the show has a voluntary arrangement in which all members receive benefits. At times it seems like the husband has the worst end of the deal in needing to maintain three homes, and I wonder if he wouldn’t have been happier sticking with his first wife (who also happens to be the most appealing). The Washington Post does state that often it is the women who support polygamy due to the bonds with other women as well as the husband. “Usually the women tend to be the biggest advocates of this way of life and men enter it more timidly,” he said. “If you are going to do it right, it’s a huge responsibility.” On Big Love, I suspect Barb, the first wife, agreed to polygamy to avoid losing her husband, but once involved does seem to thrive as the first wife in charge of the others.
Big Love also shows the downside of polygamy, including banishment of young males so that they don’t compete with the more powerful older men for wives, and young girls being forced into arrangements with older men which appear more like child molestation than voluntary marriage.

One compromise solution which appears to be in place is to concentrate on the problems where there is a clear victim and ignore others, providing de facto decriminalization for polygamy. The Washington Post gives examples, such as, “in April, Washington County prosecutors in Utah charged Warren Jeffs, the 50-year-old head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with two first-degree felony counts of rape as an accomplice on suspicion that he forced a 14-year-old girl to marry her first cousin, who was over 18.” Prosecution of clear victims while ignoring other polygamists has even received praise from some polygamists.

Republican Threatens to Slap Opponent with MS

What is it about Republicans and the handicapped and disabled this week. I’ve already mentioned Rush Limbaugh’s attack on Michael J. Fox, claiming “he is exaggerating the effects of the disease.” There’s also this AP report that a Republican candidate threatened to physically attack an opponent who has multiple sclerosis and uses an electric wheelchair:

Thomas Rankin, the Libertarian running for Wyoming’s lone U.S. House seat, said Rep. Barbara Cubin, R-Wyo., threatened to slap him after a televised debate.

During a debate Sunday that also included Democrat Gary Trauner, Cubin and Rankin had a testy exchange over campaign contributions Cubin received from former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas.

Rankin, who has multiple sclerosis and uses an electric wheelchair, said Monday night in a telephone interview with The Associated Press that the confrontation occurred immediately after the debate.

“My aide and I were packing up to leave the debate, and Barbara walked over to me and said, ‘If you weren’t sitting in that chair, I’d slap you across the face.’ That’s quote-unquote,” Rankin said.

Update: I heard a good response to Limbaugh’s attacks on Michael J. Fox while driving and listening to NPR this afternoon. When Michael J. Fox is on Boston Legal or other shows and they make him appear as if he doesn’t have Parkinson’s Disease, that is acting. When Fox is having tremors and showing the effects of Parkinson’s Disease, that is real life. It took a long time to film Fox’s scenes on Boston Legal to obtain periods in which he was free of tremors and they could obtain film which could be used.