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Showing posts with the label Where Pilots Go to Die

Where Pilots Go to Die: FOX's "The Oaks"

It's always sad when you watch a botched pilot of a script that you really, really loved and are just wholly disappointed by what you see. In this case, I'm talking about the pilot episode for FOX's supernatural drama The Oaks , which wasn't picked up to series. Last I heard, studio 20th Century Fox Television was attempting to shop the project to other networks, but I would be surprised if anyone picks it up after what I've seen. (You can read my original review of the pilot script here .) It's not that there isn't an interesting story there because there is. I was utterly captivated by David Schulner's gorgeously nuanced script for The Oaks , which tells the story of three very different couples living in the same house in three different decades: there's twenty-something couple Mike (Matt Lanter) and Sarah (Shannon Lucio) who have recently weathered the death of their young daughter and have fallen apart as a couple; middle-aged blue collar paren

Where Pilots Go to Die: FOX's "Spaced"

Ah, schadenfreude . There is something innately satisfying about watching a terrible pilot project go down the tubes when it was doomed from the very start. And there were few more misguided and foolhardy attempts this past pilot season than that of the US adaptation of UK cult series Spaced . Created by Simon Pegg, Jessica Hynes (née Stevenson), and Edgar Wright, the original Spaced was a brilliant and hyperkinetic pastiche: at once a tongue-in-cheek satire of sitcoms, an inversion of social stereotypes, and a collection of astounding sight gags, blink-and-you'll-miss-'em pop culture references, and endearingly quirky characters. It was most definitely a product of its time as well, fused into the fabric of 1990s Gen-X slackers and offering a commentary on both American and British cultural sensibilities of the time. In a word, it was brilliant. Cut to 2008, following a rough development year, in which the stars/creators of Spaced spoke out against the US version of the seri

Where Pilots Go to Die: An "Ultra" Letdown

Welcome back to another installment of "Where Pilots Go to Die." Last time, I took a look at the CW's underwater drama Aquaman / Mercy Reef which failed to make it onto the CW's fall schedule. I have a fascination with series that don't go any further than the pilot stage. So imagine my excitement when a copy of CBS's dead pilot Ultra ended up in my greedy little hands. When I first heard of the project a few months ago, I was surprised to learn that CBS was developing a series based on Jonathan and Joshua Luna's superb comic of the same name ("Ultra: Seven Days"). I was even more surprised to discover that other than sharing a title, the two projects had nothing in common whatsoever... The Luna Brothers ' "Ultra: Seven Days" (pictured below) is a smart, edgy, sophisticated comic that's rather like Sex and the City ... with superpowers. It recounts the story of Pearl Penalosa, a sexy Latina superhero with the codename of Ultr

Where Pilots Go to Die: "Aquaman" Drowns in Shallow Waters

I was planning on writing about ABC's new drama Six Degrees today, but last night I saw something so awful, so unintentionally hilarious that I needed--no, was forced--to share it with all of you. I looked into the darkness of the abyss where pilots go to die and the darkness looked back at me... and I laughed. Yes, my friends, I am talking about the aborted CW pilot, Mercy Reef, a.k.a. The Reef , a.k.a. Aquaman , which recounts, as the tagline puts it, "The Legend of Aquaman." Helpful, that. Like Smallville before it, this pilot attempted to put a youthful spin on the origin story of another DC Comics superhero, this time the somewhat openly mocked Aquaman. Let me begin by saying that I have nothing against Aquaman as a character. He's from the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, can swim really fast, and can communicate with sea creatures. I know all about how DC tried to toughen him up a bit and give him a rather, um, macho overhaul by having him lose his hand... whi