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Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Defying Gravity”

Dear Frank,

This weekend, I was going through the ol’ LTF archives, and you would not believe what I found: A half-written entry from 2009 about the short-lived series Defying Gravity, better known as the very-diverse-and-weird-Canadian-Grey’s Anatomy-in-space! Here is literally how my post began:

Defying Gravity is a tricky show, because you look at how four entire episodes of this wacky soap opera set in space have already aired, and you’re like, oh, COME ON, no way this show has really lasted that long on a major network (ABC, if you’re curious). But they are sort of cheating, because the first two episodes aired together as an uber-pilot, meaning that it’s survived three whole weeks in the deadest time of year, and looks likely to at least make it to week 5…

It actually made it to Episode 8. Which, Frank, is kind of in-fucking-credible. The more I describe this show, the more you’ll agree. Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In the “Sliders” Pilot

Dear Frank,

Of all the terrible things about being a teenager, here is one that’s only really terrible in retrospect: There will be books and movies and TV shows you consume in your adolescence that, upon future reflection, might prove to be embarrassing, especially when you realize just how much they reveal about you. There’s an inevitability to this — the most you can hope for is that the media with that kind of power over your psyche won’t include a Vancouver-produced micro-budgeted Fox show about people who hop between alternate universes with the help of an oversized cell phone.

I am, alas, not so lucky.

The pilot episode of Sliders opens with Jerry O’Connell videotaping his experiments with wormhole technology in the basement of his mother’s house; blah blah blah science science science Jerry’s a genius, having successfully opened up a portal of some sort to a… I dunno. It’s a mystery! (The answer is parallel universes.) Read the rest of this entry

Liz Tells Frank What Happened In “Fringe” (Sorta.)

Dear Frank,

So this isn’t the first time I’ve tried to tell you about Fringe — when the show first premiered in 2008, I watched the first couple of episodes with an eye towards filling you in on a regular basis. I even came up with nicknames for the characters, like Agent Cate (because star Anna Torv looks like a poor man’s Cate Blanchett) and Pacey (because Joshua Jackson was on Dawson’s Creek, a show I never watched as a teenager because of its lack of space battles).

But while the show wasn’t awful, the first few episodes also failed to hook me (you’ve seen one misfit FBI team investigate strange phenomena, you’ve seen ‘em all) and so not only did I not tell you what happened in it, I stopped watching altogether — an experience, I’ve heard, many other potential fans also shared. (Especially fans unwilling to put their faith in a J.J. Abrams production after Alias and Lost failed to follow through on their narrative promise.)

Here’s the trouble with Fringe, though — once you get past those first six or so first season episodes, Fringe is awesome. I mean, it’s not immediately awesome, but about halfway through the first season it starts getting good, and then it gets better, and then it’s onto full-on awesome, and then its awesomeness quotient increases exponentially until the awesome meter breaks and gets awesome juice everywhere. But you DON’T CARE about the mess. Because of how awesome it is.

I wouldn’t have discovered this, though, if my dad — who pushed through those first few episodes and became a fan — hadn’t (with my permission) spoiled me on a detail from the season one finale. So today, Frank, I’m not going to tell you everything that’s happened in Fringe — I’m just going to tell you enough to make you (hopefully) want to watch it. Read the rest of this entry

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