Rain. We need it anymore. But it is cold.
I watched most of this week’s return of “Alias.” Crazy. As usual. And, just a tad predictable. (well, I was one of those people who felt pretty sure that Agent Vaughn wasn’t really dead. But he was pretty darn close to dead, so I’m not sure how they’ll explain that).
The news is that J.J. Abrams, the creator of “Alias” and “Lost” (and the man behind the new “Mission: Impossible” movie), is going to be making a new Star Trek movie:
The as-yet-untitled “Star Trek” feature, the 11th since 1979, is aiming for a fall 2008 release through Paramount Pictures, the Viacom Inc. unit looking to restore its box-office luster under new management, the trade paper said.
The project will be directed by J.J. Abrams,
whose Tom Cruise vehicle “Mission: Impossible III” will be released by Paramount on May 5. Abrams, famed for producing the TV shows “Alias” and “Lost,” will also help write and produce.
Daily Variety said the action would center on the early days of “Star Trek” characters James T. Kirk and Mr. Spock, including their first meeting at Starfleet Academy and first outer-space mission.
Look, I applaud Abrams for “Alias,” and “Lost” and even for “Felicity” (well, I didn’t watch as much of that show as I could have), but I’m very skeptical of anyone’s pulling off a new Star Trek movie by 2008. I don’t pretend to speak on behalf of fans, but I’m still trying to get my Trek bearings oriented again and I’m of the view that Trek fatigue needs time to simmer. Plus, I don’t know if 2008 is too soon after “Star Trek: Enterprise.”
And, really, do we need yet another prequel?! Look, a prequel done well is all well and good, but I really have no big desire to see Kirk and Spock’s pre-Enterprise days. And, I could have sworn that Kirk and Spock did not meet each other during their Academy days? At any rate, I feel the need for something new and hopeful but relevant if I want to see new Trek again, not a re-visit or re-making of the past. I’m not asking for a return to “Deep Space 9” or “Next Generation” or “Voyager” either. I just want some well-done Trek. It’s a big thing to ask, I guess.
And, speaking of a blast-from-the-past, apparently, “Captain Planet” is coming back on a Time Warner’s network. In honor of Earth Day, Boomerang network will air a “Captain Planet” marathon:
His shaggy green mullet gives away his age, but the animated superhero Captain Planet is, improbably, mustering enough midlife energy to fight a few more villains seeking to destroy the world.
To commemorate Earth Day today, Boomerang, the digital cable and satellite channel, is showing two commercial-free marathons of 13 “lost” episodes of “Captain Planet and the Planeteers,” Ted Turner’s sometimes ridiculed pet television project for teaching environmental issues to children. First shown in 1990 on Mr. Turner’s TBS network and in syndication, the series, which tried to make children environmental crusaders — its slogan is “The Power Is Yours!” — ran for five seasons in the United States. [….]
Except for an episode in which villains try to renew the cold war, the plotlines of the sixth season are surprisingly topical, considering that they are 10 years old. The five international Planeteers, who invoke powers of wind, fire, water, heart and earth, combat evildoers like Dr. Blight and Looten Plunder, who are clear-cutting old-growth forests, running puppy mills, destroying the Mississippi Delta, even running for president. The messages are hardly subtle. In the “Twelve Angry Animals” episode, the Planeteers are tried for humanity’s crimes against their fellow species. “Fry ’em, fry ’em,” cries a raven when the humans are found guilty.
As one of the last vestiges of Mr. Turner’s slate of cause-related programming, the “Captain Planet” episodes are as much artifacts as entertainment. Not content just to devote his wealth to foundations, Mr. Turner in the 1980’s and 90’s also loaded his networks, including CNN, with programs and shows promoting his favorite concerns. [….]
Yeah, I remember “Captain Planet” as a campy kind of cartoon back when our local syndicate showed it. But, I really like that Ted Turner had his good intentions. Environmentalism is tough stuff, and if we can teach kids via a weird cartoon, so goes it.