Battlestar Galactica’s Iconic Viper Starfighters Could Have Looked Like This

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VipersWhile Glen A. Larson’s original Battlestar Galactica may seem a little cheesy when viewed through cynical 21st-century eyes, it still had a helluva lot going for it. That incredible theme composed by Larson and Stu Phillips. There was the effects work by John Dykstra. And there was a foundation built by, among others, concept artist Ralph McQuarrie. With a per-episode budget of a then-unthinkable $1 million or more, Battlestar Galactica hoped to right the wave of excitement kicked up by Star Wars, and so Larson and company had the canny idea to hire McQuarrie to help imagine what the world of BSG would look like. He helped create the look of the ragtag fleet and the Viper starfighters that defended it, but they almost looked very different.

Below is a McQuarrie image showing the Viper BSG fans know and love, a design that was changed very little when it came time for Ronald D. Moore to reboot the series for The Sci-Fi Channel a few years back. It’s sleek shape is perfectly suited for those unforgettable sequences where the Vipers rocket down the Galactica’s launch tubes.


Battlestar Galactica, Knight Rider Creator Glen A. Larson Dead At The Age Of 77

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LarsonSad news today as word has spread that TV veteran Glen A. Larson has passed away at the age of 77. GFR fans will likely know him best as the creator of the original Battlestar Galactica, but even if you didn’t recognize the name, you almost certainly know his work. In addition to giving us BSG, Larson’s long resume included shows such as Knight Rider, Magnum, P.I., The Fall Guy, and Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. The sheer volume of entertainment this guy contributed to my childhood is staggering, and I’ll always have fond memories of the BSG/Buck Rogers block that I thought was the greatest thing since Cylon-sliced bread back in the day. Larson passed away Friday night of esophageal cancer at UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica. On behalf of both GFR and myself personally, I’ll be raising a cup in his honor.


How Big Is That Comet We Just Landed On? Here Are Some Sci-Fi Comparisons

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Comet 67PYesterday humanity made history by successfully landing a spacecraft on a comet for the first time ever, thus bringing the scenario from Armageddon one step closer to becoming a reality. The European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission, which has been going on for the better part of a decade now, approached Comet 67P and unleashed its Philae lander, which touched down and started transmitting information back to Earth. It’s a momentous occasion for the species, and this ball of rock and ice hurtling through space is now the seventh heavenly body we’ve touched. We know this is a big form flying around out there, but it all sounds so abstract and can be hard to visualize. Fortunately for us, some folks out there have taken it upon themselves to put Comet 67P into a context we, as science fiction fans, can wrap our heads around.

Over at Nerdist, they took dimensions of the comet and compared it to the specs of various elements of popular science fiction, which, again, gives those of us familiar with such things a new way to think about this that makes sense to our pop culture addled brains. For instance, if you ask yourself, well, how does this compare to a Galaxy Class Starship from Star Trek? This handy image shows you just how it compares. It’s also much bigger than Deep Space 9, but is roughly equivalent to both the Borg Cube and a Federation Space Dock. So now you can picture just how big this thing is.


Battlestar Galactica Swaps Music With Top Gun, And The Results Are Badass

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One of the many things Ron Moore’s Battlestar Galactica reboot had going for it was Bear McCreary’s amazing score. It was by turns sweeping, epic, emotional, and evocative of the sense of mystery and wonder the show often explored. It felt like exactly the right music for the show, even before “All Along the Watchtower” entered the equation. But how would the tale of the ragtag human fleet’s search for a planet called Earth play out with very different musical accompaniment? Say, that of the classic 1986 Tom Cruise flick Top Gun. Like this:


Battlestar Galactica Is Leaving Netflix This Week

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BSGAll of this has happened before, and all of this will happen again. But if your “all of this” includes wanting to watch (or rewatch) Ronald D. Moore’s Battlestar Galactica reboot, you’d best get your frakking ass in gear, because you’re about to lose your chance — at least on Netflix. Watch it while you can right here.

While the movie side of the Netflix catalog is largely choked by z-grade direct-to-DVD flicks you’ve never heard of, Netflix actually has a pretty solid collection when it comes to TV shows. However, it’s about to lose one of the jewels from its crown, because Battlestar Galactica will be disappearing from the streaming service as of Wednesday, October 1 at 3am PST. Trying to get all the way through the series in that time might actually kill you, but I’m sure I’m not the only one who has had a BSG rewatch on their to-do list for months. Now what the hell am I supposed to do? I mean, I guess I could watch one of the 10,000 other items on that list instead…


Faux-fanity: Ranking Science Fiction Swearing From Shuck To Shazbot

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ParentalThe Maze Runner hit theaters this past week, and it turned out to be the rare YA adaptation that actually held our interest. But when we tried to come up with some clever feature to tie in with its release, we drew a blank. The more we thought about it, the more frustrated we became, and the more frustrated we became, the closer we inched to just throwing up our hands and exclaiming, “$#@%!”

Say, wait a minute…

See, The Maze Runner follows in a fine, upstanding tradition of many a creative universe to come before: making its own profanity. Because while science fiction teaches us that there may be no limits to how wondrous or strange our future may be, George Carlin teaches us that there are some things you just can’t say on television, or in polite company. Sci-fi creators have been skirting this issue for decades by conjuring up their own off-color vocabularies for the worlds of their imagination. Here at GFR, we think Deadwood is about as quotable as it gets, so in a spirit of shucking solidarity, we decided to embrace our inner ten-year-olds and look back at some of our favorite sci-fi swear words. First up, the movie that inspired the whole frelling article…

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