Tag Archives: Syfy

The Fading Diversity Of Lost Girl

By Guest Contributor Shilpa K.


Bo in Lost Girl. Image via Syfy.com.

Racial diversity in science fiction and fantasy can be difficult to find. Perhaps that’s why the Canadian fantasy show Lost Girl’s casual, anyone-can-be-anything attitude towards race, gender, and sexuality is so refreshing—and why this season’s shift in representation has been so disheartening.

Continue reading

Web Shows Trek Past Sci-Fi’s Color Line

By Guest Contributor Aymar Jean Christian, cross-posted from Televisual

From Blacula to Sleep Dealer, filmmakers of color have always been interested in science fiction and fantasy. But these days in Hollywood, sci-fi/fantasy films demand big budgets, and it seems like only Will Smith and Denzel Washington are powerful enough to greenlight a genre film starring an actor of color. The rare project that pushes boundaries can often go unnoticed: stellar alien invasion flick Attack the Block won over critics but couldn’t find an audience here in the States (please see it!).

Of course, on the web, things are different. While most web series are comedies and soaps, a number of creators are bucking conventional wisdom and creating stories for the black, latino and Asian sci-fi fans.

Last month, Al Thompson’s Odessa won big at the New York Television Festival — a development deal with SyFy — and released a well-financed drama, Osiris. Odessa follows the story of a father and daughter with super powers running from the bad guys whose experiments created their abilities; Osiris follows a man who is immortal.

While those two series are among the more sophisticated series to hit the web, I’ve been noticing a string of shows over the past two years looking to break the sci-fi color line. As costs for simple special effects go down, independents can afford to simulate space ships, alien worlds and laser beams. And creators are using low-cost production to diversify the space in numerous ways, adding female leads and blending genres (horror, comedy, thriller, surrealism).

There’s an artistic tradition here. From Samuel Delany to Octavia Butler, sci-fi has long attracted society’s outsiders, who use the imaginative potential of fantasy to create utopian or dystopian worlds and interrogate contemporary culture and politics.

And the audiences are there, enough so that most high profile sci-fi TV shows and films take pains to include at least one character of color. Star Trek (TV and movies) is the classic example, and continues today with shows from Alphas and Falling Skies to Battlestar Galactica and now even Game of Thrones (look out for season two!).

Below I’ve listed what shows I could find in alphabetical order. Please let me know if I’m missing an important or great series out there!

Continue reading

The British (Television Adaptations) Are (Still) Coming (And Won’t Bloody Stop!): A Look at Syfy’s Being Human

By Arturo R. García

Based on a few glimpses, what stands out most about a North American adaptation of British horror dramedy Being Human is its’ brazenness: the original show is barely about to start its’ third series, and we’re already getting a remake, which starts tonight on Syfy in the U.S. and the Space network in Canada.

(An aside here for fans of the original BH: Season 3 kicks off on BBC3 on Jan. 27, but “The Annie Broadcasts,” a series of monologues where Annie (Lenora Crichlow) explains what she’s been going through since the events of last year, are available online. From this point on, I’ll try to keep the spoilers at a minimum for newcomers.)

For new viewers: this new BH, a Canadian production, looks like it will retain the premise of the original: a vampire, a ghost and a werewolf share a home and attempt to hang on to as much of their humanity as possible while dealing with their respective “conditions.” But let’s take a look at some of the initial similarities – and differences – between Syfy’s version and its’ predecessor.

Continue reading