Monday, April 18, 2011

Come On Down....SyFy Channel!! You're Hated Again!! You're The Next Contestant on the...."Price is Right!!"


"Sy Fy Channel continues downward spiral into madness. Or is it just mediocrity?

Posted by Richard Drake on Thu, Mar 3, 2011 at 10:25 AM

Truth be told, I probably watch more science fiction these days on BBC America or Turner Classic Movies than I do on the Sy Fy Channel,
Woody Bell, who once ran Warner Cable in Fayetteville, told me sometime in the mid-1990s that if he had his way, Fayetteville cable would never be offering the Sci-Fi Channel - as SyFy was known in those days.
Shocked, I asked him why. I mean, every science fiction fan worth their salt would be flocking to the channel, surely? Isaac Asimov was on their advisory board, for heaven’s sake!
Bell explained that he had nothing against the offerings of the channel, but the high amount of infomercials that ran when there was no actual programming didn’t make it worth much of a buy, in his opinion.
Needless to say, I was aghast. I would gladly have accepted twelve hours of infomercials a day (as long as they were the hours I worked or was asleep) as long I got to watch watch the Sci Fi Channel, damn it!
Later in the 1990s, the Sci Fi Channel came to Fayetteville and there was rejoicing in the land. Classic TV shows mixed with new offerings. The channel seemed a mecca for those who were riddled with creativity.
In recent years, though, the creative folks seem to have been largely banished from the Sy Fy Channel, and in their wake, we find shows about ghost hunters, cute shows that skirt the edge of science fiction (but nothing too troubling) and wrestling.
All of this began well before the move to change the name from Sci Fi to Sy Fy, in an effort to attract more viewers - hey, we’re more than just stuff that challenges the mind! We have wrestling!
It’s a strange mix, ranging from the incredible Battlestar Galactica reboot to reality shows about would-be superheroes, psychics and shows where folks scare their “friends” - and people say that public access schedules range all over the map!
This next season, Sy Fy will be offering viewers a cooking show.
And the movies!
Back in the 1950s a lot of cheesy science fiction and horror movies came out. Sure, they were bad, but they were fun to watch, and there was some honest sincerity in the film-making of many of them.
Like the 1960s Star Trek and Doctor Who, they did the best with what they had.
The crap that the Sy Fy Channel runs on Saturday nights (“The Most Dangerous Night of Television” goes their promotion - well, maybe if you only have only channel and no books to read) is not in that class.
The films that SyFy runs are made by producers with nothing but the most abject contempt for the viewers. And by extension, Sy Fy has the same contempt, because they choose to run them.
Tyrannosaurus Azteca
Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus
Dinocroc vs. Supergator - David Carradine’s last film.
And lest we forget - Mansquito. This film is so truly bad that I have often felt that every TV series on Sy Fy should have Mansquito guest star at least once - if only to remind us of the cruddy network that we are watching.

There are a few interesting series remaining on Sy Fy, but honestly, if it went out of business today, who would truly notice? The shows with a real audience would simply move on to other networks.
And then, one day, real channel devoted to science fiction might emerge from the ashes of the Sy Fy Channel, a glorious channel where none of the executives from the current network would even be allowed in the doors."


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