TV Wasteland: Have You Heard of the Gemini Division? - Mania.com



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TV Wasteland: Have You Heard of the Gemini Division?

The age of web series tv has begun from NBC.

By Stephen Lackey     June 09, 2008


Rosario Dawson stars in Gemini Division a new web series streaming on NBC.com in July.
© NBC

The major networks are still looking at the success of independent web series and scratching their heads. They’ve tried to jump into this arena before and failed pretty miserably. It’s obvious to fans why the major networks haven’t been able to tap into the success of shows like Ask a Ninja and even the Revision 3 shows. These indie online networks focus on the content more than the presentation. They put together their programs cheap thereby making it cheap for sponsors to get behind the shows and then the series have time to grow in popularity slowly rather than having to be a major success out of the gate or bankrupt the producers. Also, these little networks aren’t locked into all of the behind the scenes trappings that weigh on the shoulders of networks forcing them to hire many lawyers and therefore drive show budgets up even further. The truly important aspect though is just doing shows on a low budget and providing unique content.

Recently, NBC has been working hard to create a unique online presence through ventures such as the successful hulu clip and streaming series portal. The network has apparently decided they can’t do the original web series so instead of wasting money trying it again they’ve just went out and acquired a series called Gemini Division starring Rosario Dawson. The official synopsis goes like this: When Sara's fiancé is killed, she discovers a microchip in her engagement ring that sets her on a journey into a biotech underworld filled with genetically fabricated life forms called Simulants. She locates the Gemini Division, who are trying to reclaim all the Simulant chips and eradicate these rogue terrorists.

Gemini Division will feature a mix of live action scenes and animation. The animation may be a low budget way of handling some of the action scenes and special effects. Rosario Dawson has shown herself over the past few years as a real fan of comics and action/sci-fi not only through her choices in film roles but also her involvement in the production of independent comics. The potential problems with this series also start with her. She’s a known entity therefore even giving all the breaks in the world she still gets paid more than some no name actress playing the part. There’s no doubt that she’ll be worth it because she’ll actually be good in the role - well if the writing is good of course. The other problem is that each episode is only four minutes long. Sure, it’ll be quick to stream but the question is: will you go to the trouble of digging through the NBC website for a four minute episode? Ultimately, NBC should make this series available for download to portable devices. If they were to do that then any issues with the brief episodes would be rendered moot. Finally, the network is promising a game built around the series that’ll be immersive and fully interactive featuring tons of bonus features related to the series. All of a sudden the budget for the series just shot up for something that most fans won’t care about.

Gemini Division hits NBC.com next month with 50 of those four minute episodes. At this point, there’s not much to see as far as previewing the seires. The official website just features a picture of Dawson. There’s a really short teaser on MySpace that says very little about the seires. Check it out here:

 

Battlestar Galactica on Friday night is really the only must see TV of the week, as it were. Fear Itself has a lot to prove this week after the sub par debut if it hopes to stick around for its full 13 episode schedule and yes, The Venture Brothers is new this week.

 
 
Monday
 
AMERICAN GLADIATORS (NNC, 8PM EST)

The men's match features a science teacher and a Columbine survivor. In the ladies' skirmish, a military vet squares off against a crime reporter. Lou Ferrigno, star of the TV show "The Incredible Hulk" (1978-82), makes an appearance.

 

DIRTY JOBS (DISC, 9PM EST) ANIMAL BARBER

Mike returns to the Spring Brook Ranch in Kalispell, Mont., to join forces with the yak and bison rancher he worked with in the 150th episode special.

 
Tuesday
 

STAR TREK ENTERPRISE (SCIFI, 8PM EST) TWO FOR TUESDAY

OK, here’s another couple of hours of Star Trek Enterprise. Is that a good thing?

 
FAMILY GUY (TBS, 7PM EST) MARATHON

Two hours of one of the best animated series on television. This is definitely not a waste of your time.

 
Wednesday
 
DRACULA 2000 (AMC, 8PM EST) 

Thieves break into a vault owned by an antique dealer and discover that he is harboring Dracula. It’s not really a bad. Nah, it actually is pretty bad.

 

GHOST HUNTERS (SCIFI, 9PM EST) GARDEN STATE GHOSTS

Two probes in New Jersey have the team checking out the Proprietary House, home of the state's last royally appointed governor, along with a 19th-century mill.

 
Thursday
 
FEAR ITSELF (NBC, 10PM EST) SPOOKED

A private investigator (Eric Roberts) on a stakeout in a haunted house is tormented by his past. Jack Noseworthy and Cynthia Watros also star.

 
Friday
 

DOCTOR WHO (SCIFI, 8PM EST) THE UNICORN AND THE WASP

Donna and the Doctor travel to 1926, where they meet the revered crime novelist Agatha Christie (Fenella Woolgar) and stumble into a murder mystery.

 

BATTLESTAR GALACTICA (SCIFI, 9PM EST) REVELATIONS

A hostage standoff unfolds as the rebel Cylons hold President Roslin captive in a bid to coax the "final five" Cylons to come out of hiding on Galactica.

 
Saturday
 
NYC TORNADO TERROR (SCIFI, 9PM EST)

Huge tornadoes rip NYC apart after a giant storm moves in over the city.

 

ROBIN HOOD (BBCAM, 7PM EST) SHOW ME THE MONEY

Robin tries to locate the Great Pact of Nottingham, written proof of the sheriff's treason, but he faces a devastating blow from Allan-A-Dale that puts Marian's life under threat.

 
Sunday
 

THE VENTURE BROTHERS (TOON, 10;30PM EST) MURDER O’CLOCK

As of the writing of this article there was no description for the episode available. But we awwume it should be good, right?

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 5 of 5
1 
sportwarrior 6/9/2008 2:56:45 AM
Rosario Dawson = hottest nerd ever?
EvilMonkey 6/9/2008 4:09:55 AM
That is the first Robin Hood (actually on at 8 EST not 7 ) it is the repeat of last Saturday's Robin Hood. 9:00 EST is the new episode.
vichussmith 6/9/2008 6:57:27 AM
Venture Bros Season 3 is definitely awesome. Gemini Division is hopefully awesome.
Wiseguy 6/9/2008 7:33:02 AM
Venture Borthers hasn't missed a step since its return. This is a must watch<BR />American Gladiators is a must watch just to see Lou's appearance and a sneak peek at the Hulk.<BR />BSG, nuff said. <BR /><BR />I haven't caught on to any of these web exclusive stuff, but I must give props to ABC for having all of Lost available on the web. It would be easy for them to limit what's available to make you buy the box sets. Yet here I am trying to catch up since I never got into it, for free.
indybyteman 6/10/2008 12:41:57 PM
I am a huge fan of Robin Hood. I fell in love with the story with the Disney movie when I was a little kid. I loved the Errol Flynn movie. Heck, I even like the Kevin Costner version. However, this BBC production is the biggest crappy waste of time ever. The Political Correct crowd got their hands on a classic tale of adventure and turned into something so banal as to defy description. As much as I love Robin Hood I cannot bring myself to watch another minute of this crap.
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