Although I've fallen behind again in recent genre television, such as time-travel drama New Amsterdam, I have managed to find time to see a few new things. For example, on Wednesday, 26 March 2008, Janice and I watched an adaptation of Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf on PBS. I was favorably impressed by the labor-intensive stop-motion set to classical music.
On Saturday mornings, I caught the series finale of Superman and the Legion of Superheroes, which was decent, but not as good as its animated DC Universe predecessors Batman, Superman, Justice League, and even Teen Titans, some of which I can catch late at night on Boomerang, Toon Disney, or the Cartoon Network. I am still enjoying the new animated Spectacular Spider-Man.
The latest legal settlement regarding the heirs of Superman co-creator Siegel may threaten future comic books, television series, and movies using the first true superhero, but remedying the injustice done by Warner Bros. predecessors to such artists is long overdue. I guess we'll have to wait a few months for the direct-to-video Gotham Knight, which is timed to be released around the same time as the live-action Dark Knight movie.
Thanks to the Cartoon Network, animation fans can also look forward to the computer-animated Star Wars: Clone Wars series and somewhat retro-styled Batman and the Brave and Bold on Friday nights. Nickelodeon will have the Marvel Comics-based Wolverine and the X-Men and young Iron Man programs. I hope the change in directors won't hurt the Gatchaman movie from Imagi Studios, which released the computer-animated TMNT. Speaking of which, Disney has announced its upcoming slate of animated movies.
Speaking of Friday nights, the SciFi Channel's Battlestar Galactica has returned. I know that many viewers and critics claim that it's the best science fiction on television, but I've often found the revisionist BSG to be rather nihilistic. On the other hand, the acting and thinly-veiled political allegory of the military space opera have been strong.
We'll see how the postapocalyptic series winds down and if the cable network's revised lineup can bounce back in the ratings. I do plan to watch the youth-oriented Sarah Jane Adventures as well as returning parent show Doctor Who. Speaking of children's literature, I reluctantly watched Tim Burton's adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which may have been darker in tone and more faithful to the Roald Dahl book, but it didn't displace Gene Wilder's Willy Wonka in my childhood nostalgia. As with L. Frank Baum's Wizard of Oz or Frank Herbert's Dune, multiple adaptations are possible.
Although it currently broadcasts Stargate: Atlantis and is planning a Stargate: Universe ship-based pin-off, the SciFi Channel hasn't shown The Ark of Truth, the direct-to-video movie that wrapped up some of Stargate SG1's storylines. While the Star Trek franchise is getting ready to come out of hibernation, it's a pity that the long-running SG1 doesn't get more recognition. Thomas K.Y. and I (pictured above with David I.S. during his visit last month) may rent Ark of Truth during Byron V.O.'s visit to the Boston area from St. Louis this coming weekend.
On Sunday nights, I've watched some of Showtime's bodice-ripper The Tudors and Tracey Ullman's amusing mockery in State of the Union, but we still need to catch up on Masterpiece Theater's "The Complete Jane Austen."
I don't know if I'll get to see the SciFi Channel's Odysseus: Voyage to the Underworld, martial artists Jackie Chan and Jet Li in Forbidden Kingdom, or the Iron Man movie when they first come out. The coming weekends will be busy with the aforementioned visit by role-player Byron V.O., travel to my in-laws to Pennsylvania, and CW's off-site meeting, in addition to the usual gaming schedule.
Speaking of role-playing, I was pleased to learn recently that Ray C., who was one of my first Dungeon Masters back in high school, has started running a D20 Star Wars: Saga Edition game in Florida. We'll see how this coming weekend's D&D3.5 "Vanished Lands: the Broken Chains" and "Holy Steel" fantasy sessions go this coming weekend, as well as the one-shots planned for next month…