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Stardate 07.02.01: ENTERPRISE Upside Down
Plus: Duchovny reconsiders X-FILES; XENA ressurects (maybe); and BUFFY sings.
By Michelle Erica Green
July 02, 2001
The eponymous ship in ENTERPRISE is said to resemble the original, but upside down.
© 1966 Paramount
While still months away from the series premiere, nearly two-thirds of all online genre reporting has been focusing on ENTERPRISE
the STAR TREK
series that apparently will not have the words "Star Trek" in the title. According to reports at Ain't It Cool News
, the early starship Enterprise will look much like the original series' vessel...but upside down. The new ship is said to be smaller and flatter, with warp nacelles and a saucer section beneath the connective midsection (usually where engineering is located on Starfleet ships). The Dark Horizons
site claims to have gotten a hold of the "Broken Bow" (the pilot) script and gives it a positive review. In the first episode summary, Captain Archer's crew rapidly assembles for a rescue mission to Qo'nos after a Klingon crashes on Earth. But Silik, a member of the chameleon-like shape-shifting Suliban race who takes orders from a shadowy figure from the future, abducts the Klingon. The S.S. Enterprise (built in part by Archer's father) pursues the Suliban to learn why the Klingon is so important to him. Vulcan first officer T'Pol has more space experience than the humans do, but she is reluctant to reveal too much information until she has to. Ain't It Cool
reports that James Cromwell will reprise his Zefram Cochrane role from FIRST CONTACT
in the series premiere the character will give a dramatic speech that sends the enterprising explorers on their way. Trek Today
adds a different twist to the actor's participation, reporting that Cochrane will appear as a hologram, since previous Trek history suggests that the human inventor of the warp drive would be presumed dead by the era of ENTERPRISE
. Another news item on Trek Today
has Scott Bakula revealing at a QUANTUM LEAP
convention that ENTERPRISE will be set 150 years from now, in the year 2151. The actor, who will play Captain Archer, told fans at Orlando Leap, via videotape, that the new Trek show would be similar to THE RIGHT STUFF
: "It's basically these people getting on a ship and going out to explore for the first time."
IN THE NEWS
SPOILER WARNING! Many of these news items reveal information about upcoming events, guest stars and plots for genre-related television shows. E! Online reports that many fans are unhappy with the tragic demise of XENA: WARRIOR PRINCESSso unhappy, in fact, that they are demanding a sequel that would bring the character back to life. "Our hearts need to mend, along with Gabrielle's," says the "Bring Back Xena to the Xenaverse" petition, which was ridiculed last week on Yahoo, but has many supporters among Usenet posters and regulars of the fan site Whoosh! (recently immortalized onscreen in the episode "Soul Possession"). "We certainly have taken the heat," Tapert told E! "[But] I really thought Xena's death was appropriate...we knew it would be emotional for the right reasons. [Besides,] this is about the fifth time that Xena has died in the series." As with STAR TREK funerals, an eventual reversal seems more likely than not.
In two weeks time, Fox's genre anthology series NIGHT VISIONS will premiere and viewers can expect to see a lot of metaphysical horror. Producers Dan Angel and Billy Brown told Sci Fi Wire that they are fans of THE OMEN, ROSEMARY'S BABY and TV programs with "the kinds of twists and turns that a show like TWILIGHT ZONE used to have." Each one-hour episode will be made up of two stories, for a total of 26 installments. Well-known genre actors and directors including Bridget Fonda, Randy Quaid, Jack Palance and Joe Dante will appear during the show's 13-week run. Early episodes feature a dead voodoo priest, a stalked shock jock and a hallucinating air traffic controller. "We were very successful with GOOSEBUMPS for kids...I think the good news is we were able to convince Fox that this could work," said Brown. "I think the audience is ready for this."
Remember the reports last week that Kevin Sorbo wanted his former HERCULES co-star Michael Hurst to make an appearance this season on GENE RODDENBERRY'S ANDROMEDA? Well, guess what? At Trek Expo 2001 in Tulsa, AZ last weekend, Sorbo announced that Hurst would play a Magog bounty hunter in an upcoming episode. According to a post at Slipstream News, Sorbo himself he will be directing an episode this season. No word yet on Bruce Campbell's planned appearance, though it's still scheduled to happen this season.
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER co-executive producer Marti Noxon revealed last week that Joss Whedon is working on a musical episode. "Almost all the cast sings," she said. "Joss himself is writing the music." The episode will be the sixth of next season, though there's still no word on how the title character will return from her fate at the end of this season. Experimenting with different genres is nothing new for the series, and Noxon goes so far as to joke about doing an episode of BUFFY as a puppet show: "I'm dying to do an episode where you just turn it on, and for no explained reason, they're all just puppets."
Bring back Apollo! Sci Fi Wire reported last week that the producers of the new BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, Dan Angel and Billy Brown, will feature some characters from the 1970s incarnation of the series, which actor Richard Hatch tried for years to revive before THE X-MEN's Tom DeSanto and Bryan Singer obtained the rights. "We want to honor the old show," promised Brown.
WHAT'S ON THE TUBENOTE: All airtimes given are Eastern Daylight Time. Most network shows will broadcast in the same time slot elsewhere in the United States, but cable movies may begin earlier. Please consult your local listings.
THIS WEEK'S PICK: Wednesday, July 4
William Shatner in the TZ episode "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet."
© Image Entertainment
On July 4, Sci Fi kicks off an original TWILIGHT ZONE marathon with all the episodes that get parodied, plagiarized and paid tribute to this day. During prime time, viewers can catch such classics as "To Serve Man" (with croutons) and "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" (with William Shatner going bonkers on a plane). Later that night, creepy episodes like "The Invaders" offset depressing installments like "Time Enough at Last." Set your VCRs, because the complete series is not yet available on DVD, and when it is, it'll probably be too expensive for completists. Plus, it'll get you in the mood for NIGHT VISIONS coming later in July.
MONDAY, July 2
You'd think it was Halloween with all the vampires running around. At 8:00 p.m., TNT will show BRAM STOKER'S DRACULA, the 1992 adaptation directed by Francis Ford Coppola that starred Gary Oldman as the creepy count. Then it's an ANGEL rerun night on the WB at 9:00 p.m. The title character has an "Epiphany" after a night with Darla and tries to regain the trust of Wesley, Cordelia and Gunn. (The Hollywood Reporter recently published the good news that Julie Benz will return as Darla next season, so this might be a good catch-up episode for those who missed it the first time around.) For more horror, TNT follows DRACULA with MARY SHELLEY'S FRANKENSTEIN at 10:30 p.m., starring Kenneth Branagh as the ill-fated doctor who creates a human out of dead body parts. Meanwhile at 9:00 p.m., Sci Fi hauls out ASTEROID, in which Earth faces a potential deep impact or Armageddon from giant space rocks. Cinemax rounds out the offerings with THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL at 10:00 p.m.
TUESDAY, July 3
On the new WITCHBLADE episode at 9:00 on TNT, Sara falls for an alternative rocker but may have to make a "Sacrifice." Max, too, makes a sacrifice on DARK ANGEL (Fox at 9:00) in "The Kidz Are Aiight," in which Zack asks for her help saving Manticore refugees from Lydecker. UPN offers back-to-back episodes of SEVEN DAYS at 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. In more of a movie mood? Turner Classics has THE WIZARD OF OZ at 8:00 p.m.commercial-free for the entire run of the moviepreceded by actor memories on the making of the film, and followed by a special entitled WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ: FIFTY YEARS OF MAGIC. The WB has a youthful fantasy at 8:00 p.m. as well, A LITTLE PRINCESS, about a girl in boarding school who tells fairy tales from India so she can bear separation from her father. It may sound juvenile, but the alternatives are DEATHSPORT on TNN, starring David Carradine as a nomadic leader in a futuristic cycling society, and TOWER OF TERROR on Disney, with Steve Guttenberg as a reporter investigating the Halloween-night haunting of a Hollywood hotel.
WEDNESDAY, July 4
Sarah Michelle Gellar as BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER.
© 2000 Warner Brothers Television
Although coverage of local patriotic events will preempt regular programming on U.S. networks, it's still a good night for genre. At 9:00 p.m., the WB offers an encore presentation of "The Body"the devastating episode in which BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER lost her mother (the episode is getting much press as Emmy nominations draw nigh). UPN reruns VOYAGER episodes "Repression" (Tuvok goes crazy) and "Nightingale" (Kim gets ambitious) at 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. respectively. Otherwise, there are lots of movie choices. At 7:00 p.m., Disney airs the contemporary Arthurian fantasy KIDS OF THE ROUND TABLE, wherein a youngster pulls a sword from a stone and we all know what happens next. Meanwhile at 6:45 p.m., Cinemax shows WILD, WILD WEST, in which Kevin Kline and Will Smith save the United States from a massive weapons platform. Sean Connery has a similar assignment in NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN, his 1983 return as James Bond, on Fox Family at 8:00 p.m. At the same time, AMC will rebroadcast THE GODFATHER. Then at 10:30 p.m., Disney's got SUPERMAN II. Happy Independence Day!
THURSDAY, July 5
Eek! Eek! Eek! That's for SCREAM 3 on Showtime at 8:00 p.m., in terror of additional sequels. Maybe THE METEOR MAN can save us; he's on Sci Fi at 9:00 p.m., trying to protect inner city high-rises despite his fear of heights. The sisters from CHARMED have their own problems on this week's rerun, "Sight Unseen," when someone breaks into their house and smashes all the mirrorshow will Alyssa Milano check her makeup now?
FRIDAY, July 6
It's FARSCAPE night on Sci Fi, though first comes a new INVISIBLE MAN episode ("Insensate") at 8:00 p.m. Afterward, Crichton and his crew finally learn the true mission of the Peacekeeper Retrieval Squad in "Relativity" at 9:00 p.m. At 10:00 p.m., it's the OUTER LIMITS episode "In the Blood." Also at 10:00 p.m., STARGATE SG-1's new episode "Threshold" takes Teal'c to the edge of death to discover his mission in life. BABYLON 5 fans missing Claudia Christian may want to check out THE HAUNTING OF HELL HOUSE at 7:00 p.m. on Cinemax. The well-reviewed ZENON: THE ZEQUEL, on Disney at 7:30 p.m., features a teen on a space station who talks like HEATHERS, but works like BUZZ LIGHTYEAR OF STAR COMMAND. HBO airs ROBOCOP 2 at 8:00 p.m.; TMC shows HIDEAWAY at 9:00 p.m.; USA offers INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM, also at 9:00 p.m. At 11:00 p.m., AMC offers 1957's THE BLACK SCORPION, in which man-eating creatures (courtesy of stop-motion effects by KING KONG's Willis O'Brien) make Mexico City an unpleasant place to be.
SATURDAY, July 7
The live-action remake of SLEEPY HOLLOW.
© 1999 Paramount
It's movie night! For those who loved MARY SHELLEY'S FRANKENSTEIN earlier in the week, Mel Brooks' warped parody YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN airs today on AMC at 6:00 p.m. And those who enjoyed KIDS OF THE ROUND TABLE can see Richard Gere, Sean Connery and John Gielgud in the revisionist Arthurian myth FIRST KNIGHT at 5:00 p.m. on HBO. Showtime airs THE GREEN MILE at 8:00 p.m.; TMC has SLEEPY HOLLOW at 9:00 p.m.; also at 9:00 p.m. HBO offers a film with few critical peers (unfortunately, that's not a good thing): BATTLEFIELD EARTH. Those who missed INDIANA JONES earlier in the week can catch a double feature of THE TEMPLE OF DOOM and THE LAST CRUSADE on USA. Fans of genetically engineered clones also get a double feature, CHAMELEON II: DEATH MATCH, followed by CHAMELEON III: DARK ANGEL on Sci Fi, starting at 8:00 p.m. But if you've had enough chameleons by 10:00 p.m., switch to TBS for JACKIE CHAN'S FIRST STRIKE and watch Chan fight on or in snowboards, ladders and shark tanks to track a stolen nuclear warhead.
SUNDAY, July 8
A busy movie day gets started with TITAN AE on HBO at 4:30 p.m. At 5:00 p.m., THE STEPFORD WIVES turn into automatons on A&E. USA airs the original STARGATE movie with Kurt Russell and James Spader at 7:30 p.m. Brian De Palma's Nicholas Cage vehicle SNAKE EYES incorporates end-of-the-world imagery as it parallels a political conspiracy with prize fighting. That airs at 8:00 p.m. on NBC; meanwhile THE SIMPSONS reruns on Fox, while BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER offers an encore presentation of "The Replacement" Xander on the WB. Meanwhile, TNT presents THE POSTMAN, Kevin Costner's controversial, but underrated tale of a man pretending to represent the U.S. government after nuclear holocaust devastates North America. Also at 8:00 p.m., the Comedy Channel airs TANK GIRL, a less serious look at post-apocalyptic society. Then at 9:00 p.m. on Sci Fi, Ethan Hawke buys genetically engineered credentials to get a job with GATTACA Space Corporation. Also at 9:00 p.m., Fox's X-FILES reruns time backward for a friend of Agent Doggett in "Redrum."
SYNDICATED AND CABLE
Public television explores one of Britain's oldest mysteries in "Murder at Stonehenge" on SECRETS OF THE DEAD. XENA may be finished, but she'll live on forever in reruns; this week it's "The God You Know," in which Xena faces off with Caligula. SHEENA faces "Friendly Fire"; lovers Renee and Jeff on EARTH: FINAL CONFLICT try to reconcile their "Hearts and Minds"; and Captain Hunt takes a trip down memory lane with his long-lost wife in "Banks of the Lethe" on ANDROMEDA. By the way, for fans trying to catch up on Scott Bakula's career before ENTERPRISE starts airing, Sci Fi has QUANTUM LEAP every weekday at 3:00 p.m. this summer.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK"I play an alpha ape. Of course, I always play those parts: kings and cardinals and presidents and geniuses." --Charlton Heston, to Sci Fi Wire, on his role in the upcoming PLANET OF THE APES remake.