Try to come up with the best idea imaginable for a TV show. Got it? Too bad, because there’s a good chance that Syfy has already acquired it while I was talking to you just then. The cable network is getting a little ridiculous with its slate of upcoming projects, but each one sounds nearly as interesting as the last, so we’re not complaining. In anticipation of today’s upfront presentation, Syfy has announced they’re moving forward with the space-bound adventure series Killjoys, and are developing an adaptation of the time-traveling graphic novel Pax Romana. I would trade in everything currently airing on the network to assure these two projects get made, except for that whole “not running Syfy” thing.
First up is the more questionable project, Killjoys, which is the product of Orphan Black producers Temple Street Productions and Michelle Lovretta, creator of Syfy’s Lost Girl. The adventure drama has been picked up for a 10-episode season, and will center on a threesome of “fun-loving, hard living” interplanetary bounty hunters employed in the Quad, a distant star-system nearing an all-out multiplanetary class war that will no doubt end in death and destruction for many. Yet the trio still remain fun and airy as they zip around, chasing down deadly targets.
This makes it the umpteenth recent pick-up for the network with a space setting—which itself is a feat that deserves a house party or two—and network president Dave Howe says it features “explosive action, smartly-drawn characters and fun and provocative storylines.” It’s hard to get a read on how Killjoys will work tonally, but if these characters are even half as interesting as the Firefly crew, we’re on board.
The second project, Pax Romana, is a four-issue series from Image Comics that utilizes time travel to create some of the most awesome action sequences imaginable. Written and illustrated by Jonathan Hickman, this story follows a Special Forces team that attempts to quash an impending World War III by jumping back to ancient Rome to alter the past. But instead of just starting conversations and trying to sway people’s minds on an intellectual level, these guys start a gigantic anachronistic warzone, where Roman warriors go head-to-headlights with tanks and helicopters. I mean, sure the Romans were tough, but they’re definitely not bulletproof.
Matthew Federman and Stephen Scaia, who wrote and produced for Jericho and Warehouse 13, will write the Pax Romana pilot. While part of my gut twitches when I think about Syfy attempting to deliver such high-octane action sequences, I just need to take some heartburn medicine, hope that they dump a huge budget into this thing, and that they find a director with suitable experience.
These projects, along with an adaptation of Lev Grossman’s novel The Magicians, join a laundry list of upcoming projects brewing over at Syfy, including the space operas The Expanse and Ascension, the 12 Monkeys remake, and many more.
Which of these two are you guys more excited about?