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Cross The Streams: Firefly Fans Find Lost Skeletons By The Bay

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Friends, Streamers, Countrymen, I certainly hope you guys are Netflix users, because they’re the only ones with anything to show for themselves this week. So we won’t Cross the Streams so much as just concern ourselves with one specific stream. But what Netflix is offering is solid entertainment for all ages and all tastes, though I don’t think any one person is going to enjoy everything on this list. Feel free to make it a challenge, though. Winners are eligible for free high fives for life.

done the impossible
Done the Impossible: The Fans’ Tale of Firefly & Serenity (Netflix Instant)
Done the Impossible, its title taken from one of Mal’s quotes in the Firefly pilot, isn’t a behind-the-scenes documentary about Firefly and its feature follow-up Serenity so much as an almost obsessive love letter to the series from the fans who played a part in turning Joss Whedon into a geek god. Hosted by Adam Baldwin, the 2006 doc features talks with much of the cast and enormous fanbase, and shows just how big a role they played in getting the unlikely Serenity film made. Will it anger you that the same fanbase hasn’t been able to sway anyone to make more Firefly? Maybe.

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The CW Cancels Cult, Stunning Exactly No One

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cultgone

When it was announced that Farscape creator Rockne S. O’Bannon was bringing a non-space-y meta-thriller to the CW, it raised a lot of eyebrows, though not necessarily a lot of interested ones. Cult was a thriller-within-a-thriller, telling the story of a journalist whose brother got caught up in the for-real cult following of a CW show called Cult — therein lies the meta — about a cult leader whose following is infiltrated by a cop whose sister he kidnapped. Everything everyone did was drowning in conspiracy, and it seemed like everyone was in on it. It could have been a pretty solid one-off, if nothing else.

So it’s no surprise that the CW has canceled Cult after only seven episodes, at the height of its central mystery! Only that was to be expected, because the ratings weren’t great, especially after it moved to Friday nights just a couple of episodes in. There’s a reason why those ratings were so low: the show seemed to have been written by someone who only found out about things like TV shows and mysteries secondhand, without ever experiencing these things for themselves. The overall approach in everything from the writing to the pacing to Matt Davis’ understated way of overstating everything made for a wacky combination that was 90% fun to watch because of its WTF factor, and 10% to actually see where the mystery was going. O’Bannon tweeted his response, keeping it cool.

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Farscape Creator Returns With Cult: This Week In Science Fiction

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Cult

Cult
The CW, Tuesday 9/8c

Given that Farscape occupies a high slot in both my list of best science fiction shows ever made and best shows of any sort ever made, it’s a bit of an understatement to say that I’m excited to see his return to television with The CW’s Cult and Syfy’s Defiance. We’ve still got to wait until April for the latter show, but Cult is headed our way Tuesday night, and it looks intriguing and batshit-crazy. It’s a potentially cult TV show about a cult TV show about a cult, which may actually be more than just a cult TV show. Whew.

The show follows an investigative journalist (Jeff Sefton) whose unstable brother vanishes after claiming that a mysterious TV show wants to hurt him. In search of his brother, the journalist begins diving deeper into the world of the show (also called Cult). Meanwhile even those people working on the fictional series itself are uncertain where the lines between fiction and reality lie, including actor Roger Reeves (Robert Knepper), who plays charismatic cult leader Billy Grimm on the show-within-a-show.

If Cult works, it could be a trippy, addictive bit of metafiction that channels shows like Lost or Twin Peaks. Hopefully O’Bannon and his writers have learned the lesson of those series that came before: if you’re serving up a narrative that hinges upon complex mysteries and mythology, be sure you can pay it off. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that O’Bannon and company won’t let us down.

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Watch Farscape Creator’s New Show, Cult, Online Right Now

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It’s hard to believe that, nearly a decade after Farscape wrapped its run, series creator Rockne S. O’Bannon is about to return to the airwaves with not one, but two new shows. We won’t get to see Syfy’s Defiance until April 15th, but his metafictional thriller Cult is set to debut next Tuesday, February 19th, at 9/8c on The CW. But to hell with waiting: you can watch the first episode online right this very minute.

O’Bannon tweeted the news out yesterday, and you can view the first episode, entitled “You’re Next,” via The CW’s website or on Hulu (warning: link automatically begins playing the video).

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