Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Streaming Sci-Fi Summer Camp

If there's one thing unemployment is good for, it's catching up on TV. Suffice to say that I've had the opportunity to enjoy a fair amount of sci-fi programming in the last few weeks. To make it through the thunder and lightning of evening storms, I've already begun revisiting some classics I love and some classics I always meant to love but never got around to -- and it's been AWESOME. I am leveling up in nerd-dom after the epic Doctor Who marathons I've gobbled down. Here are my suggestions to stave off the swass:


DOCTOR WHO
I've heard the phrase "You never forget your first Doctor" -- and now that I'm working backwards past the fantastic Matt Smith, I know it's true. Tennant is good, but Eccleston is a bit of a let down (though I've loved him in other things -- he's the general in 28 Days Later, remember?).

Doctor Who is a must if you like shows that are funny, smart, dumb, self-aware, fanservicing, and sometimes really quite moving. If you're new to Who, start with Series/Season 5 of the reboot with Matt Smith as The Doctor. The first two seasons of the Eleventh Doctor are on Netflix, and the third that just wrapped up is available streaming on Amazon and iTunes. For the ultra-anal, this guide is your bible.


STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION
In fifth grade, I bought a TNG lunchbox at a thrift store after discovering afterschool back-to-back TNG/DS9 in syndication. It's like coming home. Jean-Luc Picard, Riker, Data, Troi, Geordi, Worf, Crusher... and Wil Wheaton as Ensign Wesley Crusher. (I know this might be sacrilegious here in these hallowed internet halls of geekery, but am I the only person who wants to punch him in the face sometimes?)

TNG is on Netflix and streaming on Amazon. Yes, sometimes it's really really cheezy, but it can also be thrilling and funny. I now present: Riker Sitting Down --


Why, Riker, why??


SHERLOCK
Ok, this isn't sci-fi, but it's damn fine TV for geeks. Bilbo and the bad guy from Star Trek Into Darkness finally hit the nail on its homoerotic head and blow pretty much every other Sherlock Holmes adaptation out of the water. (I feel like Tobias Bluth... "There's gotta be a better way to say that.") The fanfiction for this show must be insane.

Watson's patience and awe of Sherlock's Asperger-fueled genius fluctuates with his entirely understandable frustration. But really this is the Benedict Cumberbatch show, which is all anybody really wants it to be. The Series 2 ending made me cry and scream... my dog had no idea what was going on. But don't worry, SPOILERS, SWEETIE.

But the real answer to the question "How can I avoid going outside?" is so obvious. May 26 -- all your dreams come true: Arrested Development, Season 4, 15 episodes streaming on Netflix. Really, it's a good thing I'm unemployed or I'd have to take the day off of work.



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