I remember when NBC-owned cable network SciFi changed their moniker to “SyFy”, which prompted several of us die hard fans call it “sii fee”.  For awhile there, it looked like they had traded all their original scripted content in for the more ‘audience friendly’ and ratings heavy WWF/WWE/RAW wrestling events.  Let’s be honest, aside from the reruns of Stargate and the 4 seasons of Battlestar Galactica, the most science fiction the channel gave us for a few years there was their fantastically campy B movies (Sharknado, Ice Twisters, Chimera, Mecha Shark vs Crocosaurus) which I really really enjoyed.

Part of the DragonCon parade from 2011.
Part of the DragonCon parade from 2011.

Many supporters of the previous content of the channel said those of us who watched the various ‘monster of the week’ movies weren’t helping the cause. Even saying giving those films ratings was ‘taking away interest from the possible series the network could be producing’.  I disagree with this, as many times officials from the network have stated revenues generated from the advertising during these films is what funds their scripted series.

What really brought the network back for me was Defiance.  Launched as both a series and a video game, this was the first stride the network had made in a long time to bring in a new source of engaging programming.  I will say they were really trying my patience by waiting to the last minute to announce a third season pick up last year, that was HORRIBLE!!  (Yes, I’m leaving out fanfavorite Haven because we have another contributor who will be talking about that; as well as Continuum, Being Human, The Almighty Johnsons, Dominion, and Primeval.)

Last year, they also premiered Helix, a series produced by Ron D. Moore. Tonight Helix   returns for it’s second season, showing that SyFy finally has their commitment to bring their original scripted content back to a place of importance.

Also tonight, this new Friday night lineup will be anchored by brand new series 12 Monkeys, which will (from everything we’ve seen so far) be a retelling of the 1995 Terry Gilliam film Twelve Monkeys, without Gilliam’s involvement.  You can watch the first episode for free on SyFy’s website here.

We can even talk about the NBC series Constantine returning tonight for the back half of their first season.  There is still no word on whether the series will continue for a 2nd season on NBC, chances are if it isn’t, it’ll get ushered over to SyFy and continue there, and they seem keen to keep up momentum.  After all, they greenlit another series from David S. Goyer, Krypton, which will supposedly take place many years before Man Of Steel and center around where the world builders went wrong.

Most recent trailer for Helix season 2:

First 9 minutes of 12 Monkeys:

ABOUT >> Mary Anne Butler
  • BIO >> Mary Anne Butler (Mab) is a reporter and photographer from San Francisco California. She is a lifelong geek, huge music nerd, occasionally cosplays at conventions, does Renaissance Faires, and in general lives the life of a True Believer. She may be short, but she makes up for it with a loud voice.
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