Author Topic: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot  (Read 7271 times)

Online JasonAW3

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #20 on: 07/24/2017 03:15 PM »
I also keep thinking of Space 1999 reboots, and like a lot of posts here Im always thinking about how a hardSF tv series could work.

For Space 1999 I had a couple of ideas that I admit are not very hard SF.

---(1)---
The first was just to replace the astronomically implausible notion of an explosion that sends the moon carreening through space to orbit a different earthlike planet every week. The show had such great somewhat plausible models, and potential for all round plausibility, then they gave it to the pilot and he threw it out the window.

A minimal change would be to just say "It was aliens". It is a cop out, a blatant plot generator like the stargate, but then everything else could plausible human technology. I was thinking that the collision that formed the moon from the earth could have been with some huge almost indestructable alien machine, say 100km across, and the moon formed around it. Humans find it and this triggers a vast international scientific project, with bases from different nations sort of like Antarctica. There is also a lot of political intrigue and suspicion of spies embedded in the teams.

Our alien plot generator gets triggered, and the moon begins to jump to unknown destinations, similar to the stargate plot generator. It always replaces a singularity or other body of the same mass at the destination, so the destination is not disrupted by the gravity.

So you actually have 3 plot generators:
(1) The stargate plot generator
(2) Alien secrets still hidden within the moon itself.
(3) All the cooperation and intrigue between the various bases that are now cut off from earth.

---(2)---
The second idea could be slipped into (1). What if it was a parallel earth that found this alien artifact, not us. Suddenly the moon in our sky is replaced with a colonised one. The culture on that moon is pretty much the present day as envisioned by people in the 1970s. There would be some comedy, with 1970s culture next to ours, but also they would represent what we could have been. They were the ones that made it.

Gee, I like yours and BenTheSpaceBrit's ideas better than mine.  :D
You both should come up with a plot synopsis for a pilot episode.

I too had thought about Alien_Technology™ being hidden inside the Moon - perhaps even deep below Moonbase Alpha itself - and that could even be the Big Secret - the hidden reason why the Moonbase was established, with nearly everybody on Earth being kept in the dark about this.

Your idea of connecting it with the collision that originally formed the Moon sounds cool. That would make for a very large and nearly-indestructible alien spacecraft/structure.
Alternatively, using the other origin theory of the Moon having been a wandering satellite that was captured by Earth's gravity, could then make for Space1999-in-reverse (ie. a Moon that had previously wandered through other solar systems and perhaps collected various things from them) It also creates the possibility that the Moon somehow selected the Earth as a destination, perhaps deliberately sent to Earth with the goal of fostering life/intelligence (a la 2001 monolith)

Having a large alien spaceship/structure embedded inside the bowels of the Moon reminds me a bit of that old movie Forbidden Planet, which featured highly advanced technology hidden deep underground by a lost civilization.

Maybe investigation/examination of the Alien Technology beneath the Moonbase inadvertently triggers some signal/beacon, which then summons who-knows-what from parts unknown. Or maybe it accidentally triggers some kind of doomsday device, or awakens a bunch of frozen aliens who have their own agenda.

I personally prefer a science experiment screw up.

      Someone was testing an experimental warp drive.  It had previously been tested in a lab near Gila Bend Arizona, now known as the Gila Bend Crater, for self explanatory reasons.

      While the initial experiment was a disaster, enough data was gotten to prove that there was a lot of promise in this drive approach, but there appeared to be a bad interaction with the Earth's magnetic field.  Rather than risk another incident like this, it was decided to try the experiment on the far side of the moon, in case of another such incident.

      Unfortunately, the accident wasn't just because of an interaction with Earth's magnetic field, but also with it's gravity.  Isolated on the moon, with no real magnetic field to speak of, the drive essentially enveloped the entire moon, warping past Earth, (As the moon, it's mass and nearby stations and spacecraft were essentially outside of normal time/space, the effects of the moon's disappearance would only take effect years later) into interstellar space.

      Once the drive is deactivated, it is determined that they are on course towards another solar system.  after running the numbers, they find, by warping towards the star system, ans using the gravity of the system, they can steer a course back to the solar system.  But, they will have to steer the moon through a long wide loop, taking thousands of light years of travel, and dozens of solar system pass throughs, and decades of travel, to get back home.

      At least that's how I'd write it...
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Offline MATTBLAK

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #21 on: 07/24/2017 03:39 PM »
Believe it or not; E.C. Tubb's standalone Space:1999 novel has plot elements fairly close to what you said:

https://randall120.wordpress.com/2013/02/14/ffb-space-1999-earthfall-e-c-tubb/
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Online jgoldader

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #22 on: 07/24/2017 05:09 PM »

I'd pay real money to see a faithful adaptation of Starship Troopers.  Or Have Spacesuit Will Travel.

There was a CG-animated series adaptation of Starship Troopers, called Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles. It had the power-armor, Marauders and everything.

I saw an episode or two on TV back in the day.  Maybe I should get the DVDs.  The CG was pretty primitive, as I recall.
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Online Thorny

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #23 on: 07/24/2017 06:59 PM »
Space: Above and Beyond.  Originally planned to run 5 seasons but cancelled after only one due to poor ratings.
I liked it and I thought it had great potential.  Rebooted with 20 year newer technology it might be a winner.

It was mocked as "Space: 90210" at the time. They'd have to fix that youth-centric angst problem if they want it to be taken seriously.

I'd nominate "UFO" be redone. There was talk of it for a while a few years ago, but it seems to have died. "UFO Season 2" turned into "Space: 1999", so some sort of hybrid UFO/Space: 1999 series could work, as long as they get rid of the purple wigs and fishnet uniforms. "Independence Day: Resurgence" sort of approached this, with its moonbase defense system.

I'm actually surprised no one has remade "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" (the movie) yet, and changed the 'Van Allen Belts On Fire' plot to some global warming catastrophe that only the Seaview can thwart.

Online eric z

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #24 on: 07/24/2017 11:06 PM »
 Man, They just showed the VTTBOTS episode where the Clown takes over the Seaview and turns the crew into wax...I bit my lip a few times from laughing too hard! :D

Offline Kansan52

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #25 on: 07/24/2017 11:28 PM »
Blake 7.

Online Coastal Ron

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #26 on: 07/25/2017 12:10 AM »
I actually enjoyed "The Starlost" when it was on.



It had a young Keir Dullea (of 2001: A Space Odyssey fame), and was originally created by famed writer Harlan Ellison. Unfortunately Ellison had a falling out with the production, but it was a great premise at the time. The series was also going to use a camera system called "Magicam", developed by the then-young Doug Trumbull, which was computer controlled, but unfortunately it was too far ahead of it's time to work. Obviously too many "unfortunately's" cut the production short...
If we don't continuously lower the cost to access space, how are we ever going to afford to expand humanity out into space?

Online sanman

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #27 on: 07/25/2017 10:46 AM »
The Starlost also had sci-fi author and aerospace engineer Ben Bova as a technical advisor to the show (he likewise quit along with Ellison)

The show was ambitious in its vision and concept:



Bova later wrote The Starcrossed, a humorous satirical novel about an engineer working as a technical advisor on a sci-fi show, forced to deal with Hollywood types who keep messing up the show. The novel is said to have captured his frustrations in working on The Starlost.

The Starlost has recently been revived as a comic book, under Ellison's original title, Phoenix Without Ashes:

http://strangersandaliens.com/2012/04/comics-review-harlan-ellisons-phoenix-without-ashes/
« Last Edit: 07/25/2017 10:51 AM by sanman »

Offline notsorandom

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #28 on: 07/25/2017 02:10 PM »
Space: Above and Beyond.  Originally planned to run 5 seasons but cancelled after only one due to poor ratings.
I liked it and I thought it had great potential.  Rebooted with 20 year newer technology it might be a winner.
The show had potential and I remember liking it at the time. I also remember it was all over the place, the writers just threw every sci-fi trope they thought of in the show. There were shape shifting aliens, evil androids, genetically engineered humans, a shadowy government conspiracy, and in one episode a character found out she was psychic. Were it to be remade today I think it would benefit greatly from tighter more consistent writing. It might be difficult to keep it from being to close to the remade Battlestar Galactica.

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #29 on: 08/03/2017 10:42 AM »
FWIW, I got the impression that the real issue with S:AaB was that the scriptwriters were having a real difficulty in understanding and communicating the meta-plot to the audience in a comprehensible way that still maintained interest. The last few episodes had a string of 'wham' reveals that turned the show on its head but were handled so clumsily that you got the impression that the producers had realised audience interest was waning and had decided to drop all the twists into the show in a panicked attempt to save it.
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Offline Star One

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Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #30 on: 08/03/2017 11:53 AM »
The recent attempted Space 1999 reboot called Space 2099 was axed before it even got very far into production.
« Last Edit: 08/03/2017 11:53 AM by Star One »

Offline joncz

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #31 on: 08/04/2017 09:29 PM »

      Once the drive is deactivated, it is determined that they are on course towards another solar system.  after running the numbers, they find, by warping towards the star system, ans using the gravity of the system, they can steer a course back to the solar system.  But, they will have to steer the moon through a long wide loop, taking thousands of light years of travel, and dozens of solar system pass throughs, and decades of travel, to get back home.

      At least that's how I'd write it...

Sounds like Tau Zero, which would be my vote.

Online nacnud

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #32 on: 08/04/2017 09:59 PM »
A couple of reboots that I would watch would be:

Star Cops https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Cops

A series based on Enemy Mine https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enemy_Mine_(film)

Something based in Iain M. Banks culture universe, although that would be a boot, rather than a reboot.

And if we are going to allow boots then a series based around House of Suns by Alastair Reynolds could be amazing.

Offline Ben the Space Brit

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #33 on: 08/11/2017 11:13 AM »
The Mouse on the Moon - A satire of space exploration and the motives behind it. On a technical perspective, this was a very interesting in that it anticipated the emergence of electric propulsion in its low-thrust/high-energy transfer stage (the Grand Fenwickian spacecraft needed to spend weeks transferring to Lunar orbit due to the nature of its propellent and the limitations of the tiny principality's ability to manufacture engines that could handle high chamber pressures). A high-thrust mode was available but only at the cost of fuel efficiency and safety.

Other interesting technical features: Like most 1950s-1960s fiction, TMotM anticipated a direct descent/direct ascent mission profile. The Grand Fenwickian spacecraft also used propulsive Earth EDL; the high potential energy of the local spirits being sufficient to give the spacecraft an enormous potential dV reserve.

IMO, it could be usefully rewritten as a satire of the 'race' between government and commercial space to carry out BEO space-flight. Especially if you put a SpaceX expy in the place of the Soviet Union, who, in the original film, jump-start the Grand Fenwickians' plans by giving them an R7 to use as a launch vehicle.

Another political thread that a script-writer could pull is the Grand Fenwickians' shameless embezzlement of international relief aid funds to support their space program. This is especially relevant to a Brit like myself; there are criticisms in some quarters of British international aid recipients (like India) having an advanced space program and you could use such a story to explore both sides of this argument through satirical comedy.
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Offline Ludus

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #34 on: 08/30/2017 02:51 AM »
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/19141
Complete text free from Project Gutenberg

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0151YRG6A/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1
99 cent Kindle edition

Thomas Edison's Conquest of Mars

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edison%27s_Conquest_of_Mars

1898 Unauthorized sequel to the Wells The War of the World's serialized in newspapers. A world devastated by the Martian invasion realizes there may be a second attempt and mounts a counterattack to conquer Mars lead by Thomas Edison and a cast including many real people.

This is an amazing book for being so obscure. It's the ultimate SteamPunk SciFi. It actually has a major place in the history of the genre for being the first to describe all sorts of space tropes. It gets more of the science right than much later science fiction. It practically single handedly invents the space opera decades before Buck Rogers.

A big budget movie. Like the Wild Wild West but in space, and more charmingly actually written in the Victorian era so it has that part down perfectly.

I find it very readable and entertaining.
« Last Edit: 08/30/2017 03:03 AM by Ludus »

Offline the_other_Doug

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #35 on: 09/10/2017 03:46 AM »
I've had a concept for an anthology series, set in a common universe, for decades:

"Larry Niven's Tales of Known Space"

Set your stories in Niven's Known Space universe.  Jump around, perhaps, from Kzanol the Slaver, to the Pak, to Gil the ARM, to Jerryberry Jansen, and then to Beowulf Schaeffer.  Pull in some of the stories from the Man-Kzin Wars series.  Add new stories from different writers, using some of Niven's characters, or their own, but based in Known Space.

Do a set of mini-series to end each season, each consisting of one of the Ringworld novels.

CGI lets you do Pierson's Puppeteers, Kzinti and Outsiders with real flair nowadays.

And hey, you can fix the "exploding Galactic core" mcguffin by making it an expanding wave-front of radiation and particles generated by a galactic core supermassive black hole merger.  (It's been observed that some galaxies appear to have multiple SMBHs at their cores; it's inevitable you would get energetic mergers over the lifetime of a galaxy.)

It would take a decade to run out of stories taken directly from Niven's own works, but the format lets you include additions to Known Space from other gifted writers.  A win-win that SyFy has been ignoring for decades.

As for taking individual novels and making mini-series or simple movies out of them, I'd love to see "Autopsy for a Cosmonaut" made into a film, and perhaps an update to "Marooned", this time perhaps having the sole maintenance guy on a Bigelow commercial habitat get into trouble, requiring rescue by, I dunno, an as-yet-unflown Dream Chaser crew variant that gets launched through the eye of a hurricane...?  :)
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Online sanman

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #36 on: 09/10/2017 04:44 AM »
Niven's Man-Kzin Wars reminds me a lot of Wing Commander and its Kilrathi antagonists  -- yeah, I know, Niven was first. (Mark Hamill's Commander Blair was his best sci-fi role after Luke Skywalker and Batman's Joker.)

Given the high-quality results of series done by HBO, like Game of Thrones, I think this the new format to beat, because it lasts longer than a mere 2-hour movie and so it's more satisfying. Apparently, Jeff Bezos is very adamant that Amazon TV come up with their own Game of Thrones level of hit, so that he can gain more market share. (Their adaptation of Philip K Dick's The Man in the High Castle has been very popular, and is worth checking out on Amazon, if you haven't seen it yet.) A Space Opera might be a good genre for them to try.
« Last Edit: 09/10/2017 05:35 AM by sanman »

Offline savuporo

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #37 on: 09/10/2017 05:02 AM »
Niven's Man-Kzin Wars reminds me a lot of Wing Commander and its Kilrathi antagonists  -- yeah, I know, Niven was first. (Mark Hamill's Commander Blair was his best sci-fi role after Luke Skywalker and Batman's Joker.)

Wing Commander itself is worthy of reboot. In any media - and lets just pretend like the Freddie Prinze movie was never made.
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Offline Dalhousie

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #38 on: 09/10/2017 05:57 AM »
A couple of reboots that I would watch would be:

Star Cops https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Cops

A series based on Enemy Mine https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enemy_Mine_(film)

Something based in Iain M. Banks culture universe, although that would be a boot, rather than a reboot.

And if we are going to allow boots then a series based around House of Suns by Alastair Reynolds could be amazing.

I'd definitely like to see a reboot of star cops - realistic police procedural in space.
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Offline ThinkerX

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Re: Older Space SciFi Worthy of Reboot
« Reply #39 on: 09/10/2017 08:18 PM »
One possible way to salvage the 'John Carter of Mars' tale would be to move the whole thing from the 19th to the 29th century.  Timeline would run -

2050-2300 - Mars terraformed.

2300-2500 - Massive numbers of colonists sent from Earth to Mars, while at the same time earth governments grow increasingly unstable (energy/resource/climate issues0

2500-2800 - Partial collapse of civilization on both Earth and Mars.

2900 - New civilizations on Earth and Mars, often dictatorial/monarchial.  Fossil fuel tech is pretty much out, giving things a steampunk type feel.  A handful of old 'super-tech' spaceships and other items linger, permitting contact between Earth and Mars. 

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