16 December 2011

FWS News Feed: The end of Terra Nova? And the Goliath Trailer

Terra Nova cancelled by FOX?!
It seems that Terra Nova is finally going to be put out of its misery. Monday's episode had a promo for next Monday's (12/19) two-hour season finale, and some sites are saying, along with star Jason Omara (via Twitter) that the final decision to send Terra Nova to the Gallows Pole will be made around the first part of the new year. That seems unlikely, the overall arch of the central plot, Taylor's son, the 11th pilgrimage, the Phoenix Group are all coming to a head at an accelerated pace, and it seems that the climax will be showed on 12/19's two-hour finale. These signs all point to a show that has entering the end of its life and the creators are trying to wrap the storyline up for the fans and DVD boxset.

The 11th Pilgrimage and the Phoenix Group?

So, where is the nuclear fusion power station to run this?
The powers that created the time portal and the colony of Terra Nova do not share the goal of using the Terra Nova settlement as a second chance for mankind with Commander/Governor Nat Taylor in charge of the operation. Since the pilot, there as been a shadow storyline (much like Lost) of some other group seeking to control Terra Nova in the past and in 2149. During the last few episodes, it as come out that Taylor's long-lost son, Lucas, has been working with the Phoenix Group to establish a stable time-bridge and use Earth-of-the-Past for resources to save the dying Earth of 2149. Prior to this, the Phoenix Group attempted to use the Sixth Pilgrimage as a force to oust Taylor from power, but lost, exiled, and became the central pain-in-the-ass to the colony since. Lucas finally got a working micro-time portal device and attempted to rise a coup with the arrival of Taylor's commanding officer, General Philbrick. The plan didn't work out, and Taylor had his son exiled, taking him years for him to gather the resources to rebuild the device along with working out the math. Lucas and the exiled Sixers allied together with the 2149 Phoenix Group to achieve their similar goals, apexing in the 11th pilgrimage. With military forces coming to the Terra Nova settlement, we can all bet that the settlers will use dinosaurs to win the day, then send a message to 2149 for the colony to be left alone, and the colony disappear into the past...

What happened to Terra Nova?

There were high hopes for Terra Nova, especially with the big names and bucks behind it, and I have to give FOX credit for attempting to keep this show around longer than they would have if Steven Spielberg wasn't a name on the credits. What killed this $1.5 million-per-episode time-traveling epic was that the characters, storyline, and the general mood never gelled, creating a show that always felt half-baked, and unable to move the ball down the field. There is simply a lack of creativity on the series, they wasted the concept of Taylor's lost son, the Sixers, and a fresh start for mankind. The Shannon family was to be core of the show originally, but these characters failed to say or do anything that mattered, often the Shannon family boiled down Jim Shannon and Commander/Governor Taylor going off on bro-love missions into the jungle together. This lack of having characters that were not developed enough and could not carry the show forward or for us to care if they were eaten created the downfall of everything else...wait, that might have made a better show.
Then there is the heavy-handedness of the storylines, and lack of being able to build the mysteries that were raised during the pilot. In the end,  Terra Nova's fate is similar to another Steven Spiedlberg TV series, SeaQuest DSV, where big names, big money, and a big network would not make it work. It just goes to show that it all comes down to writers. Maybe in a few years, Terra Nova will get a relaunch or remake.  

The GOLIATH Trailer

This very low-budget Military Sci-Fi/Alien Invasion trailer for a proposed movie is directed by Alex Popov, and it is quite simply amazing. More amazing is how technology allows filmmakers without a company or backers, like bloggers, to make impressive adverts for their craft. My brother and I made movies with our Super 8 camera, and later, a VHS camcorder, and it impresses me the level of beauty that be achieved via modern software. My hats off to the filmmakers of this daring trailer, and for making an original idea that I wished I come up with! It is my hope that someone in Hollywood sees this, and allows this military sci-fi dream to be a bloody reality.


  1. Shame, rather enjoyed some of the aspects of Terra Nova, I thougt it had promise to become as good as the Stargate series with some better
    writing!Great find with the The GOLIATH Trailer, that should be passed on to the hit and miss producers over on the Sci-Fi channel!

  2. No surprise about Terra Nova. Brandon Bragga sinks another good idea. Goliath does look great, though.

  3. It is odd how Stargate was able to survive and evolve into a good series when Terra Nova was allowed to die...I would guess money. Brandon Bragga track record is hit or miss, Enterprise good, Voyager bad, Flashforward could have been good. Shame about that one. "
    I am excited about Goliath. Would it is odd is that the "American forces" were using the French FAMAS

  4. One of my favorite films, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, started out as a trailer made in Kerry Conran's living room. Kerry showed it to some producers and they decided to make it into a movie. If you haven't seen Sky Captain, check it out- its a fun film that retains the optimistic and whimsical vision of the future people had in the early 20th century.


    So, sometimes films start out like this! It is odd that the "American forces" are using the French FAMAS- maybe those were the only airsoft guns they could get their hands on? (I've seen a lot of hobbyist small film makers on youtube using quality airsoft guns as weapons props, and I think the makers of Goliath probably did the same.)

    I see some Iron Man influences in the design of the bio-droids. I suspect a real alien invasion would be not nearly as colorful. There are many subtle ways to massacre the human population that don't involve powered armor- or even an enemy humans can shoot at.

    The concept that hapless humans are made into bio-droids is similar to your story Empty Places...

    Christopher Phoenix

  5. I know! I watched the trailer, and I was like "Waitaminute! That's my idea!" errr....
    I forgot about Sky Captain being a promo-ad trailer, the internet at work I guess.

  6. My question is, why do we need to stick a human in the biodroid in the first place? Why not a neural net of sorts, or maybe even a computer made of lab-grown brain cells. There was a research project where scientists used a culture of 25,000 neurons taken from a rat's brain to fly a F-22 fighter jet simulator. The stated goals were understanding how the human brain performs and learns computational tasks at a cellular level- yeah, sure...

    I think the real way to robotic assistants like we have in SF stories is to simulate the human brain either with an electronic neural net or even by a brain-computer interface with a lab-grown slab of brain cells. This means that real robots will not be programmed like your cell phone. These robots will grow and learn, even have emotions. Without emotions, we would all be unable to make decisions. Someday, our machines won't be mindless, programmed computers that simply follow instructions that we programmed them with. Instead, they will emulate life, learning about the world around them like a human baby does.

    Christopher Phoenix

  7. That is a good point Mr. Phoenix, I would like to think more robots of the future will be more like Data from ST:TNG than Cybermen for Dr. Who, or the metallic Cylons. There didn't need to place the organic element to the APS...it remains me of the Robotech: Masters' Bioroids.