New Independent Star Trek Film: Axanar

The long wait for a decent Star Trek spin-off is almost over. Not wishing to knock JJ Abrams’ attempts, but I’m referring to Star Trek story lines that follow the original timelines, ie. those that leave the Vulcan culture & planet thriving!

There have been a lot of fan based films but as a general rule, even though the storyline may be good, the acting is not so great and the special effects are even more limited (the latter not being the most important though, in my opinion) due to the understandable limited budgets.

However, a new star has emerged after nearly two decades that the official Star Trek franchise left our screens and it has arrived in the form of Star Trek: Axanar. The official site for those of you who wish to get their information direct from the horses mouth is: http://startrekaxanar.com/ (really? you don’t believe me? Shame on you!)

I’ve recently been in touch with one of the geniuses behind the project, called Terry, and he informs me (as can be backed up on their site, yes go ahead & visit it!) that part of it’s success is because it features professional actors such as the legendary JG Hertzler (although this time not in his famous Klingon attire), and Gary Graham (know in the Star Trek world for his portrayal of Vulcan Ambassador Soval and for me personally, his role of Matt Sykes in the 80s series “Alien Nation”).

Add to the above the fact that there are amazing special effects involved, filmed in a professional studio, based on an original Star Trek storyline event, and the creators are 100% Star Trek fans, then this film is more like an official Blockbuster Movie than a fan made project.

Last Saturday even saw the World Premiere of the prequel “Prelude to Axanar” at the Comicon event in San Diego, something which Terry neglected to invite me to so hopefully the rest of us mere mortals will be able to get our hands on copies soon enough. In the meantime, enjoy the short official preview and as always, please let me know your thoughts.

Doctor Who Number 12 Revealed

Many people, especially newcomers to the BBC Doctor Who saga, just think that the series began in 2005 with Christopher Eccleston staring as The Doctor. However, Doctor Who goes way back to 1963 and is a sci-fi series about a Timelord who, instead of dying, regenerates a new body; cue new actor.

Doctor Who 12 - Peter Capaldi

There is a 50th Anniversary Special planned for the end of the year but this evening it was officially revealed by the BBC that the twelfth Doctor will be portrayed by the actor Peter Capaldi. According to the official Website, and I quote, “Steven Moffat, lead writer and executive producer says : “It’s an incendiary combination: one of the most talented actors of his generation is about to play the best part on television. Peter Capaldi is in the TARDIS!””

Still Wondering Who Is Doctor Who?

Then look no further than the Official BBC Doctor Who Site to fill you in on the past 50 years and an eternity of cult history. Enjoy!

Yolanda’s Star Trek Uniform

When Star Trek Becomes Reality!

Imagine my surprise today at work when my work colleague Yolanda is there sat at her desk, mobile in hand, dressed in what I can only describe as a Star Trek: Next Generation officer’s uniform. Both Yolanda & Kelly have very modern dress sense but today, Yolanda shot to number one in my opinion. Sporting a gold and black two-tone dress, it resembles the command colours from the TV series “Star Trek: The Next Generation”.

After taking a photo (what Star Trek fan wouldn’t?) just so I could show my friends, I decided to put my limited Photoshop skills to use and show a ‘before & after’ picture. I’m quite pleased with the result but decide for yourselves.

Yolanda - Star TrekThanks again to Yolanda for her unending patience with me and my photography & Star Trek obsessions! As always, comments are welcome. The original photo is shown below so that you can compare the two. Just click on it to see full size.

Yolanda in Star Trek Dress

Spock and Spock – The Ultimate Challenge

spocks and audi

Two Spocks, an Audi and a Mercedes. You may think that there’s a type-o there but then you’d be wrong. The latest video from Audi for their S7 features not one but two Mr. Spocks from the famous Star Trek franchise. The following video in lovely High Definition presents us with Leonard Nimoy’s Spock (from the Original Series) and Zachary Quinto’s Spock from the new JJ Abrams films. Both actors (or Spocks, for those of you who often confuse fiction with reality) agree to a challenge in which the loser will buy the winner their lunch.

Which Spock Is Better?

That is likely to be an eternal debate, almost as heated as ‘Which is better: Star Wars or Star Trek?’! However, the video presents both actors interpreting the same role and in a light-hearted setting, thus providing not only a touch of humour but should keep fans happy, both of  the Original Show and the New Films. Enjoy and don’t forget to comment. Thanks.

Almost Human – New Series

Fox Almost Human Cast PhotoBeing an avid “X-Files” fan and still not being happy that it came to an end (and has never been renewed either), I was more than happy to come across another sci-fi series called “Fringe” by the director J.J. Abrams. Like most good things, that too came to an end and I was once again left without a good, iconic sci-fi series to get hooked on.

I watch “Warehouse 13” with interest but I must say it lacks that spark or, as the French say, “Je Ne Sais Pas”. The last series has been deplorable, outright silly and boring in my opinion and I fee that so much more could have been done with it but alas, I digress.

Imagine my surprise and joy to hear that JJ is bringing out a new series called “Almost Human” this November. It is a sci-fi police series and features Karl Urban (“Bones” from the new Star Trek films) & Mackenzie Crook (Gareth Keenan from “The Office”). Cutting a long story short (you can read the full official version at the end of my Blog post), it’s set in the nearish future when the police work with androids on the force but Karl’s character is not comfortable working with them after losing his partner and ends up with an artificial robotic implant in his leg (hints of “I Robot” there). He then gets to work with a ‘not 100% with it’ android who seems to have human qualities. There you have it: “Cagney & Lacey” for the 2010s.

I have high hopes for the series as I was a big fan of “Alias” with Jennifer Garner, even though I felt that said series lacked impetus towards the end. I’m hoping that it will focus on individual storyline episodes and strong leading characters rather than dragging the series out with a common thread throughout all episodes. Plus, if JJ wants to renew the “X-Files” franchise and bring back the original “Mulder & Scully”, that would also bring a smile to my face.

I leave you with the official spiel from the FOX Network site for those of who are too lazy to visit the OFFICIAL “ALMOST HUMAN” SITE:

Karl-Urban-AHThe year is 2048. Meet JOHN KENNEX (Urban), a cop who survived one of the most catastrophic attacks ever made against the police department. After waking up from a 17-month coma, he can’t remember much – except that his partner was killed; his girlfriend, ANNA MOORE (guest star Mekia Cox, “Crazy, Stupid, Love.,” “Undercovers”), left him after the attack; and he lost one of his legs and is now outfitted with a highly sophisticated synthetic appendage.

Michael-Ealy-AHSuffering from depression, mental atrophy, trauma-onset OCD, PTSD and the “psychological rejection of his synthetic body part,” John returns to work at the behest of longtime ally Captain SANDRA MALDONADO (Emmy Award nominee Lili Taylor, ” Six Feet Under,” “Ransom”). By mandate, every cop must partner with a robot. And despite his passionate aversion to androids, John is paired up with a battle-ready MX-43. But he abruptly terminates his partnership after the robot discovers incriminating information about him.

Mackenzie-Crook-AHSo technician RUDY LOM (Mackenzie Crook, “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise) introduces John to DORIAN (Ealy), a discontinued android with unexpected emotional responses. Although such responses were deemed flaws, it is in these “flaws” that John relates to Dorian most. After all, John is part-machine now, and Dorian is part-human. John and Dorian’s understanding of each other not only complements them, it connects them.

Minka-Kelly-AHAs he adjusts to working with his new partner, John also must learn to get along with his new colleagues, including the eager and somewhat starstruck Detective VALERIE STAHL (Minka Kelly, “Friday Night Lights,” “(500) Days of Summer”) and the distrustful Detective RICHARD PAUL (Michael Irby, “Law Abiding Citizen,” “The Unit”), who does not welcome John back with open arms.

ALMOST HUMAN will follow the week-to-week missions of John and Dorian, as they fight crime across this futuristic landscape, while the mysteries surrounding his attack and the larger mythology of this new world unfold.