Archive for the ‘G. Philip Jackson’ Tag

Frozen/Frozen (Redux)   5 comments

Above:  Dr. Devon with Ryan, His Son

A Screen Capture

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

SEASON 1, EPISODE 7

MAIN CAST

Michael Paré as Dante Montana

Claudette Roche as Lucretia “Luc” Scott

Tanya Allen as Percy Montana

Murray Melvin as Caravaggio (the ship’s AI)

Stephen Marcus as Rudolpho DeLuna

SUPPORTING CAST

Yves Beneyton as Dr. Devon

Kai King as Billy Tsunami

Philippe Simon as Etienne

Matthew Crabbe as Ryan

Debiiey Dunn as Qunita

J. Michael Boudreault as Zakal

Sheldon Gordon as Raider #1

Meredith Vuchnich as Tracey

Barbara Longaphieas as Luc’s Mother

BEHIND THE CAMERAS

Director = François Basset

Writer = Lorne Wise

Composer = Donald Quan

Length of the original episode = 0:47:23

Length of the Redux episode = 0:44:05

GENERAL COMMENTS ABOUT THE EPISODE

Above:  Dr. Devon

A Screen Capture

  1. Meredith Vuchnich is an actress, screenwriter, producer, and director.
  2. This episode is one of Matthew Crabbe’s two credits at the Internet Movie Database.  The other credit is Episode #15, Dark and Stormy Night, which incorporates clips from various episodes, including this one.
  3. One theme of this episode is the sacrifices fathers make for their sons.  Rudolpho’s opening transmission, omitted from the Redux version, fits into this theme; he recalls sacrifices his frequently absent father, the member of a crew of space ship, made for the family.
  4. Another theme of this episode is forgetting and remembering parents from whom one has been parted for a long time.  Ryan does not remember his father at the beginning of the episode, but calls him father at the end.  A Raider tells Dante that Travis (Dante’s son) has forgotten him (Dante).  Yet a Raider captured on board the Transutopian says that he remembers his mother.
  5. The Raiders are despicable for more than one reason.  The kidnapping of children is one of these reasons.
  6. Etienne (last seen in Family Values) is back.  He provides much of the comic relief in this episode.
  7. Billy Tsunami, Percy’s favorite singer, is back, too.  We last saw him in Siren’s Song.
  8. Luc, referring to the Omega 47 virus, refers back to Siren’s Song.
  9. I enjoy continuity from one episode to another.
  10. Dante feels guilty for failing to protect Travis from the Raiders.
  11. Dr. Devon feels guilty for failing to protect Ryan from the Orchard and the Raiders.
  12. A Raider double agent betrayed Ryan to the Raiders.
  13. Dr. Devon’s wife, Tracey, died after giving birth to their son, Ryan, born with a rare brain disorder.  Dr. Devon, a specialist in pediatric research, tried to cure his son.  The Orchard financed his research, which resulted in “an electromagnetically altered genetic cocktail.”  The cocktail transformed Ryan into a boy who, while seemingly asleep yet really in a trance, unconsciously manipulated the magnetic fields of nearby people, accessed their memories, and caused them to see and hear illusions.  The Orchard kidnapped Ryan and told Dr. Devon that the boy was dead.  Dr. Devon rescued his son, stole a small transport ferry, and set out, with a squadron of Raiders in pursuit.  There was also an Orchard vessel, which never intercepted the Transutopian, which rescued Dr. Devon and Ryan.
  14. Dr. Devon accurately describes the Orchard as “the bastards” who finished what he started.
  15. Etienne pretends to be infatuated with Luc and to love women.  He tells Luc that, if any woman could make him “jump ship,” she could, though.
  16. Ryan’s condition causes Dr. Devon to see Tracey (his late wife), Dante to see Travis, Luc to see her mother, Percy to see herself, and Etienne to see Luc.
  17. After Raiders board the Transutopian to seize Ryan, he causes them to see the illusion of a shuttle departing the former luxury liner.  The Raider squadron pursues the illusion.
  18. Etienne works for the Orchard.
  19. Luc, who also works for the Orchard, ensures that Dr. Devon and Ryan can settle on Titan, a moon of Saturn, and begin a new life.
  20. Titan has been free of Raiders for years.
  21. Dr. Devon’s most ardent desire is to be a good father.
  22. This episode tells us that Dante used to be a corn farmer on Titan.
  23. Percy is 18 years old, according to G. Philip Jackson, who should know, given that he was one of the creators of the series.
  24. Percy is cute and not intimidating when she orders Etienne to surrender to her authority.

REGARDING YEARS IN STARHUNTER (ORIGINAL) AND IN STARHUNTER REDUX

Frozen 07

Above:  Luc

A Screen Capture

  1. In both the original and Redux versions of this episode, Dante gave the date of the abduction of Travis Montana as November 2, 2264, from Titan.
  2. In the original version of the first season, the current year in The Divinity Cluster is 2275.  This is consistent with the abduction having occurred ten years prior.  Most people do not speak of the past in precise terms.  “Ten years ago” can mean ten years, two months, and seven days, for example.  It can also men nine years, eleven months, and ten days, for example.
  3. In the Redux version of The Divinity Cluster, the current year is 2285.  This change helps to reconcile the dates in the (first) two seasons.    Season Two was originally Starhunter 2300, set about fifteen years after the first season.
  4. Series co-creator S. Philip Jackson has written to me.  He has informed that the 2285 is indeed the correct year in The Divinity Cluster, and that the abduction of Travis was in 2275.  (It could have been in November 2274, I suppose.)
  5. I detect a contradiction between the audio in a scene and information from a co-creator of the series.  I believe the latter.
  6. Given Dante’s mention of 2264, even in the Redux version of this episode, I have a question about the timing of the Callistian Civil War of 2254-2257, mentioned in The Man Who Sold the World.  I wonder if the civil war could have spanned 2264-2267 in the Redux chronology instead.  Advancing the timeline by a decade seems to be normative.

Next:  Past Lives, with the Orchard, more skullduggery, and Eric, Luc’s former husband.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Peer Pressure/Peer Pressure (Redux)   2 comments

Above:  Dr. Nasreen

A Screen Capture

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

SEASON 1, EPISODE 6

MAIN CAST

Michael Paré as Dante Montana

Claudette Roche as Lucretia “Luc” Scott

Tanya Allen as Percy Montana

Murray Melvin as Caravaggio (the ship’s AI)

Stephen Marcus as Rudolpho DeLuna

SUPPORTING CAST

Laura Landauer as Dr. Nasreen

Jazz Mann/Jasbir Mann as Ajit

Peter Pacey as Dr. McIntyre

BEHIND THE CAMERAS

Director = G. Philip Jackson

Writer = Annie Ingham

Composer = Donald Quan

Length of the original episode = 0:47:23

Length of the Redux episode = 0:44:05

GENERAL COMMENTS ABOUT THE EPISODE

Above:  Ajit

A Screen Capture

  1. Laura Landauer is a singer and comedian who impersonates both Celine Dion and Elvis Presley.
  2. This was the first filmed episode.  The original episode from 2000 plays like a pilot episode.  The Redux version does not.
  3. We see the end of Rudolpho’s opening transmission from the original episode.
  4. The storytelling in the Redux episode is tighter than in the original episode.
  5. Dr. Nasreen, an expert in psychological traumatic stress, is insane, dangerous, and cruel.  She also has an unhealthy interest in her son.
  6. Caravaggio is a wonderfully sarcastic artificial intelligence.
  7. Dr. Nasreen developed a method of controlling hardcore criminals:  manipulating their magnetic fields to make them docile.  If they want to live, they must obey orders.  If a prisoner disobeys, his or her cerebral cortex self-destructs.  The delivery method is a red light flashed into the eyes.
  8. Dr. Nasreen is the suspect in the murder of one Dr. McIntyre.
  9. Percy is cute.
  10. Percy and Ajit flirt and have mutual puppy love.
  11. Percy does need to get off the ship and find more people to whom to talk.
  12. Dr. Nasreen orders Dante, under her control, to kill Luc and to enjoy doing so.  Then Luc, immunized from the red light zapping by Caravaggio, seizes control of the association and forces Dr. Nasreen to reverse the procedure on Dante, back at Mimas, from which Dante picked up Dr. Nasreen and Ajit.
  13. Mimas is a moon of Saturn.
  14. After Caravaggio humiliates Percy in front of Ajit, she reduces the AI’s intelligence so much that it begins to sing “What Shall We Do with the Drunken Sailor?”
  15. Ajit understands his mother’s character.  He stops her by spacing himself.
  16. Nasreen zaps herself.  Then she, back in a holding cell aboard the Transutopian, rocks back and forth and says, “Tell me what to do.”
  17. Percy mourns Ajit alone in her quarters.

REGARDING EARLY EPISODES OF THE FIRST SEASON

Above:  Percy Montana

A Screen Capture

The first season has a story arc in two parts:  the Divinity Cluster and the search for Travis Montana.  Some of the early episodes merely seem disconnected from each other, in the style of episodic television.  A few of them are so disconnected.  The relationships among many of these early episodes become clear in the fifteenth episode, Dark and Stormy Night, possibly the only good clip show ever.

Next:  Frozen, in which we see the Orchard and Etienne (from Family Values) again.  The Orchard is, overall, an assembly of amoral, sick bastards (including some female ones) who think that the ends (which are impossible) justify the means.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

OCTOBER 20, 2019 COMMON ERA

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Trust/Trust (Redux)   4 comments

Above:  Tanya Allen as Percy Montana

A Screen Capture

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

SEASON 1, EPISODE 2

MAIN CAST

Michael Paré as Dante Montana

Claudette Roche as Lucretia “Luc” Scott

Tanya Allen as Percy Montana

Murray Melvin as Caravaggio (the ship’s AI)

Stephen Marcus as Rudolpho DeLuna

SUPPORTING CAST

Mark Pegg as Alistair McNaughton

Gideon Turner as Jeremy McNaughton

Federal Agent #1 = Paul F. McCarthy

Federal Agent #2 = Robert A. Corbett

BEHIND THE CAMERAS

Director = George Medeluk

Writers = Nelu Ghiran and Peter I. Horton

Composer = Donald Quan

Length of the original episode = 0:47:23

Length of the Redux episode = 0:43:19

GENERAL COMMENTS ABOUT THE EPISODE

Above:  Tanya Allen as Audrey and Ken Finkleman as George in The Newsroom:  The Campaign (1997)

A Screen Capture

  1. This is a well-named episode.  Can Dante and Luc trust Percy?  Can Percy trust Jeremy?
  2. The Redux version of this episode benefits from tighter editing than in the original version.  Rudolpho’s opening transmission offers little information we do not learn during the course of the episode.
  3. In the original version of the episode, we learn that Rudolpho has four bounty hunters under contract.
  4. Percy is 18 years old, according to G. Philip Jackson, one of the creators of the series.  Tanya Allen was 24 or 25 years old when she filmed the first season, though.  That she was no longer a teenager was evident whenever the camera filmed her face from certain angles.
  5. Tanya Allen is cute.  She was cute in The Newsroom (1996-1997), in which her character, Audrey the intern, could never find a bran muffin.  She was cute in Starhunter (2000-2001) and Starhunter 2300 (2003-2004).  She has been cute in movies and in episodes of other series.
  6. Percy is brilliant.  She is a fine engineer and mechanic.  She is also immature and naïve.  Percy, boy-crazy, lets her guard down when she receives male attention.
  7. Alistair and Jeremy McNaughton are guilty armed robbery and attempted murder.  Jeremy attempts to convince Percy that he is a victim of a corrupt legal system.  Then he and Alistair try to kill Dante and Luc.
  8. Alistair and Jeremy become the first two prisoners at an automated prison, Mercury Correctional One, on the side of Mercury that faces the Sun.  They have life sentences.
  9. The new effects for Mercury, the Sun, and Mars Orbital One are beautiful.
  10. Percy’s sparring, which angered Dante at the beginning of the episode, helped her fight the prisoners at the end of the episode.
  11. At the end of the episode, Dante and Percy have stopped arguing and reached an understanding.
  12. Dante is very protective of Percy, his niece.  He has one other surviving relative, Travis, his son, whom Raiders kidnapped years ago.
  13. The Transutopian is Percy’s home.
  14. The set design of the interior of the Transutopian is excellent.  The faded elegance is obvious.
  15. The only hint of the Orchard story arc comes at the end, when Luc hastily puts away her Orchard communicator when Percy knocks on the door of her quarters.

Next:  Family Values, an episode relevant to the Travis story arc.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

OCTOBER 10, 2019 COMMON ERA

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Starhunter/Starhunter 2300 and Starhunter Redux: Opening and Closing Credits   1 comment

Above:  The Title Card from Starhunter (2000-2001)

A Screen Capture

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

I’m a bounty hunter, but that’s just something that I do.  I’m looking for something that was stolen from me.  Ten years ago, they took my son.  As I search there are signs that something is happening, that humanity is about to change.  But I won’t be distracted.  How do you find one small boy in a lawless universe?  I’m not sure, but I have to keep trying.

BACKGROUND

Starhunter (2000-2001) and Starhunter 2300 (2003-2004) have become some of my favorite viewing.  In fact, I have written an episode guide to the series.  That episode guide is available at this weblog.   That is old news from 2010 and 2011.  This post exists and at least 44 other posts will exist because of Starhunter Redux (2017), available via Amazon Prime.

I have had some difficulty finding much background information about Starhunter and Starhunter 2300, for they seem to be cult series.  I have, however, learned that series creators Daniel D’Or and G. Philip Jackson had some “creative” differences with executives.  I wrote “creative” in quotation marks because I do not assume that executives necessarily possess creativity.

As I have written in my episode guide, the visual differences between Starhunter and Starhunter 2300 are impossible to miss.  The same space station looks quite different in each season.  The exterior of the Transutopian (the Tulip) is quite different in each season, and the bridge area seems to have gone through a renovation while in hyperspace for 15 years.  (The steps off the break room/dining area, absent in Starhunter, are impossible to miss in Starhunter 2300.  Also, some windows are different, with different sometimes meaning present.   Furthermore, the exteriors and interiors of shuttlecrafts and the shuttle bay are different.)  In Starhunter Redux, however, the visual design of Starhunter 2300 takes over in the altered versions of first season episodes, except in the bridge area and the interiors of shuttlecrafts.  The two series/seasons feel cohesive, mostly.

Above:  The Transutopian, from Starhunter (2000-2001)

Screen Captures

Above:  The Transutopian, from Starhunter 2300 and Starhunter Redux

Screen Captures

I prefer the original appearance of the Transutopian, given the backstory that the vessel is a former luxury liner long since relegated to a junkyard and converted into a bounty hunting ship.  The unused sections of the ship that lack a hull help to sell that backstory.

I plan to write a series of posts comparing the original and altered episodes.

CREDITS

The opening credits of Starhunter (2000-2001) are here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aGbiOACX9Qw.  The narration explains the backstory:  Bounty hunter Dante Montana is really looking for his son, whom Raiders abducted some years prior.  Meanwhile, the human species is changing.  These two plot threads merge throughout that first season.

The opening credits of the first season of Starhunter Redux retain that theme yet feature a different  arrangement of it. Dante’s exposition is absent.  The visuals also differ; most scenes come from both Starhunter and Starhunter 2300, and some are new.  The opening credits of the second season of Starhunter Redux are similar to those for the first; the differences are most obvious in scenes depicting the cast.  The Starhunter 2300 theme (an arrangement of Peter Gabriel’s Darker Star) is gone.  (Darker Star does work well for a science fiction series, though.)  The opening credits for the second season of Starhunter Redux also differ from those for Starhunter 2300 in that the opening credits for Starhunter 2300 do not show the actors.

The closing credits music for Starhunter 2300 is here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dfiJllkhaw.

A slightly extended version of the end credits music from Starhunter plays over the end credits of both seasons of Starhunter Redux.   (Start playing at about 4:29 for the original end credits music.)  Donald Quan is a talented composer.

Next in this series of posts:  Season One, Episode One:  The Divinity Cluster.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

OCTOBER 7, 2019 COMMON ERA

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++