Tag: SyFy

Let’s Talk About “The Expanse”


About seven months ago, a kid I work with told me about a science fiction TV show he thought I’d enjoy. It was a little something called “The Expanse.” It had a great premise. The only problem was that it was on the Syfy channel.

If you’re not familiar with Syfy, until they rebranded themselves a few years ago, they were the Sci-Fi Channel, a cable station nominally devoted to science fiction television. The only problem is that … their programming was terrible. If you need an example of their garbage programming, they’re the folks behind Sharknado. The fact that they changed their name to “Syfy” should tell you everything you need to know. But I was assured, by my coworker, that this one series was the shining gem of the network and that it was worth watching. And, boy howdy, was he right.

The series is set a few centuries in the future. There’s a united Earth, under the UN. There’s a colonized Mars, attempting to terraform, and there’s The Belt, the people who live and work in the asteroid belt. They are the Third World of the solar system. They have their own culture, their own language, their own society, and they are perpetually under the boot of the Inner Planets. The series centers on two main characters, James Holden, who begins the series as XO of an ice freighter, and Miller, a hard-boiled detective who lives on one of the inhabited asteroids in The Belt.

“Woke” Without Waking Up to History … and Real Life


Four days ago on the website of the SyFy Channel, film critic, screenwriter, and comic book author Marc Bernardin wrote about the 2018 slate of pictures to be released.

If 2017 was the tip of the representational spear, then 2018 will be the long shaft that follows. This year will deliver Black Panther, A Wrinkle in Time, Ocean’s 8, and Crazy Rich Asians — studio movies catering to historically underserved audiences, many of which are written and directed by members of those same audiences.

In other words, 2018 is the year that white dudes will be confronted with inescapable media that isn’t about them.