With a new Doctor in Peter Capaldi and one chapter of his adventures with Clara closed in tragic fashion, the long wait for season 9 of Doctor Who has begun. Thankfully, you can revisit most of the Doctor’s “modern” adventures — beginning with Christopher Eccleston and stretching through the David Tennant and Matt Smith years — on Netflix. I would be very surprised if some of you weren’t in the midst of a trip back through those episodes as I write this. Well, I’ve got some bad news for all you Whovians: Netflix will be dropping Doctor Who from its streaming lineup at the end of the month, along with other British favorites such as Who spinoff Torchwood, cult favorite Red Dwarf, and a ton of other British fare.
This is who he called.
This is just four-play.
Time to clear your schedule.
As much as we love science fiction on TV, on the big screen, on the comics page, and in video game form, there’s just something irreplaceable about digging into a good book. There’s no shortage of new sci-fi adventures hitting shelves on a regular basis, but GFR is your one-stop shop to keep up with what’s hitting shelves in a given week. Here’s what’s new on the Giant Freakin’ Bookshelf!
“Blackout” by Meredith McCardle
Seventeen-year-old Amanda Obermann (code name: Iris) has more on her mind than usual. As a member of a covert government organization called the Annum Guard, which travels through time to keep history on track, Iris has been getting some particularly stressful assignments. Plus, Jane Bonner, the Guard’s iron-fisted new leader, seems determined to make life as hard as possible. Thankfully, Iris has Abe (code name: Blue), her boyfriend and fellow Guardian, who listens to her vent — and helps her cope with her mentally ill mother’s increasingly erratic behavior.
When Guardians start to disappear on their assignments, Iris makes a terrifying discovery: a ‘blackout’ squad is targeting anyone who gets in the way of a corrupt force that’s selling out both the Annum Guard’s missions and Guardian lives. Together, Iris and Blue must go undercover to untangle the Guard’s elaborate web of secrets and lies. But when Iris discovers that the terrible truth may involve her own father, a former Guardian undone by his own greed, she must decide how much she’s willing to risk to rescue her friends…and how dangerous the consequences will be for all of humanity.
A thrilling time-traveling adventure that spans from Abraham Lincoln’s assassination to the Cuban Missile Crisis and back to the present day, this pulse-pounding sequel to The Eighth Guardian reveals that playing with time can turn into a deadly game.
AMC currently rules the horror TV landscape, at least popularity wise, with their mega hit zombie drama The Walking Dead. And while they’ve tackled weighty fare with Breaking Bad, the western with Hell On Wheels, and the police procedural with Low Winter Sun, they’ve yet to dive full on into science fiction. That’s changing with their upcoming Humans, and now we have a new look at the series.
This new image shows actress Gemma Chan, who plays a “Synth,” as their called (it sounds like a very derogatory term), named Anita. Set in an alternate reality that parallels our own, in Humans these robotic servants—think super fancy Rosie from The Jetsons—have become the must-have status symbol for any family on the rise. One suburban family reaches beyond their budget and means to purchase their very own Synth, hoping it will change their life. And it does, just not for the better. When they buy a refurbished model, they discover that living with a machine has “far-reaching and chilling consequences.”
Of the three continuing Doctor Who titles Titan Comics currently has running, The Tenth Doctor has easily been the best of the bunch. The latest, Issue #6, ushers in significant changes, however. Not only does it kick off a whole new story arc, it brings an entirely different creative team to the table. Writer Robbie Morrison and artist Daniel Indro replace Nick Abadzis and his cohorts, and put their own stamp on David Tennant’s Time Lord. While there is definitely a different mood and tone going on here, they’re still playing the long game, letting the narrative arc unfold and the characters develop over multiple installments, and Issue #6 reads like what it is, the first chapter in a larger story.
The first story for The Tenth Doctor might have had giant killer sculptures and sinister bipolar twin entities, but everything about this latest issue, from the plot to the setting to the art, has a grim, serious edge to it. Now that Gabby Gonzales has signed on to be the Doctor’s full time traveling companion, their next adventure finds them in a blasted, desolate place full of death and destruction, as a minor miscalculation (Gabby tried to make a spot of tea in the TARDIS) plops them down smack in the middle of No Man’s Land in World War I.
For his next book, the much adored Neil Gaiman is revisiting two fan favorites from his past. The celebrated writer’s next book, Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances, will include not only a Doctor Who story, but a new jaunt in the epic world of what may be his best novel, American Gods. As if a new Gaiman book isn’t enough to get you salivating, that should do the trick.
Gaiman has famously penned two episodes of Doctor Who, “The Doctor’s Wife” and “Nightmare in Silver,” and fans keep clamoring for him to write more. And while this isn’t exactly what they ordered, Trigger Warning does include a Doctor story. The story was apparently written for the show’s 50th anniversary last year, and though it isn’t explicitly named anywhere (at least not that I can fine), it’s assumed to be his story “Nothing O’Clock.” That’s not quite as exciting as a brand spanking new offering, but if you haven’t read it, it’s still new to you.
If you’re one of those people who hates it when you turn on a channel that’s supposed to be scientific, or at least science based, and get irritated when you see some nonsense, you’re in luck. Now under new leadership, Discover Channel vows that all of the publicity stunts, ratings grabs, and not-really-science spectacles are all going the way of the dinosaurs.
According to Entertainment Weekly, this is in response to viewer reaction to a slew of ridiculous programming choices that go against the scientific mission of the network. One instance cited is Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives, a fictional movie they aired during the last Shark Week that is a faux documentary about the “serial killer of the sea.” Sister station Animal Planet’s fascination with mermaids has also been the source of much consternation among audiences.