Ghost Protocol

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After getting rave reviews for season 4.5, shooting all of season 5 (to air next year) and getting picked up for at least a 6 episode 6th season, Eureka got up-picked up and cancelled. Normally I would nerd-rage against SyFy or its parent company NBC/Universal or their new parent company Kabletown… err, Comcast for being short sighted or too focused on profits at the expense of quality, but this time it’s a little different. This is the first prematurely cancelled show I’ve enjoyed  where I’ve had multiple friends working on said show. Amy Berg, pictured in the panels above, is the co-executive producer and a writer on Eureka, and Wil (as most of you know) plays Dr. Issaac Parrish on the show. So instead of spitting indignant geek venom all over the internet, I’ve decided instead to focus on my friends, the great show they’ve created and what they’ve (we’ve) lost.

At San Diego Comic-Con this year I went to the Eureka screening with Amy and our friend Dammit Liz. As we watched the never-before-seen episode I found myself getting nervous. What if the crowd didn’t respond well? What if I didn’t laugh enough? The lady right next to me made this show! Luckily the crowd loved it, and lack of laughter was not an issue. It was a great episode and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Still it made me realize that geek TV was starting to fall off of the unattainable pedestal I had always kept it on. Sitting next to a television writer as she laughs at her own show then criticizes the use of high heels in an action scene where high heels would have actually caused the character to die was sobering and served to humanize the whole experience.

The show was larger than life (especially since it was being projected on a 50ft wide screen), but at the same time it was very small and personal. I was surrounded by the crew that worked on the episode and I realized I had never before seen a TV show reflected on the faces of the very group of people that made it. Immediately afterward I turned to the writer, Ed Fowler, and congratulated him on a job well done. TV had never really been this accessible to me. After the screening the writers and crew gathered outside the hall for a congratulatory huddle and group hug. They were proud of their work and proud of each other. That experience is why I’m viewing the cancellation of Eureka differently than say, SG:U or Terminator: TSCC. I loved those shows, but all I knew of them was the finished product. The gloss and polish. Thanks to Amy, Wil, Ed and the other Eureka crew members I met, I see this show in a different light. I feel like instead of a show being cancelled, a family is being broken up. I realize that is not a unique occurrence within the Hollywood machine, but it was the first one I was even tangentially close to and it saddens me.

Still, fans of Eureka do have some 19 or so episodes to look forward to. That is probably the longest run for an already cancelled show that you have ever gotten or ever will get. At least it gives us time to get used to the idea. And at least Syfy IS giving them one extra episode to wrap things up. My guess? Eureka is purgatory and they’ve all been dead the entire time.

COMMENTERS: DO NOT SEND ANYONE FROM EUREKA YOUR IDEAS/GUESSES FOR THE FINALE!!! THEY REALLY DO HAVE TO BLOCK YOU IF YOU DO! NO JOKE. Still, I bet you could post your ideas here, on my site and nobody would get in trouble. Probably.

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39 Comments

  1. I don't have any comments on Eureka cos I don't have pay TV and therefore no Syfy. But, Joel, what's with the eyebags? Were you mega-tired? You don't look that old in photos! Is this the effect of comic-con?

    • Hmmm… the eye bags have always been there. My eyes have always had dark circles in real life due to lack of sleep/ unrestful sleep. Ive just always drawn them that way.

  2. Dude i love the VS idea! also uber props for the 30 rock reference! i mean I’m like totally in love with liz lemon! not Tina fey (she okay and all but she just an actor) but liz lemon, she is so funny and such a hot mess. She gets the geek stuff and is just nearlly the perfect woman. Thankfully my wife understands which makes her perfect but oh god if i could just ‘squeeze’ the lemon for a bit

  3. So glad I canceled ComCast as a service provider. Hopefully, someone will buy them out and fire them all. My town told ComCast to go take a hike. What are they going to do? Contract for more Wrestling air-time? What idiocy!

  4. I'm guessing SyFy noticed that the current plotline involves space. "Wait, what? There's no space travel allowed on SyFy! Cancelled!"

    There are a lot of threads from old, prior Eureka plotlines that I'd love for them to wrap up or at least make big nods to in the finale ep. For example, did they ever give a solid explanation of Carter and Zoe passing themselves driving the other way in the pilot? I feel like they did but I can't seem to remember it. A nice tie-in to the very beginning would be tidy. Similarly, addressing things like how Henry is the only one (unless Beverly does as well? It did seem potentially implied) who remembers ALL the past timelines. Actually, that's one of the things I hope Eureka gets really back to in the bakers-dozen-and-a-half eps to go; there was awhile where Eureka deftly threaded in undercurrents of ongoing plot that a casual viewer would neither need to nor be able to notice. I always thought that was a brilliant compromise between standalone accessibility and grander/deeper storytelling.

    The fact that people can't send in their ideas because if someone sees them they can no longer do them is crazy, although sadly crazy in a way that's entirely expected and unsurprising considering our contemporary approach to intellectual "property" (especially how large organizations like media conglomerates and professional guilds treat such issues).

    • "The fact that people can't send in their ideas because if someone sees them they can no longer do them is crazy"

      Thats not a Eureka rule or a SyFy rule. That's all of hollywood. If you remember a while back a lady sued the Wachowski's because she submitted a screenplay to a contest (which techincally IS solicited) which they eventually turned into The Matrix without paying her a dime. Eventually they settled out of court for an undisclosed amount. Now that we have instant access to most if not all celebrities via twitter and such, they have to be careful that "Hey Joss Whedon, you should kill Wash! LOL! #firefly" doesnt turn into "HEY! THAT WAS MY IDEA! I WANT MONEY!"

      • Besides, Whedon never needs encouragement to kill his characters. If he could, I bet he would kill other people's characters. "Peter Bishop? You're just not working anymore. Boom, you're instantly dead from something."

    • "did they ever give a solid explanation of Carter and Zoe passing themselves driving the other way in the pilot?"

      Yes, in the pilot itself, but it was cut. Jaime Paglia said so in an interview years ago which, as I type this, is the first hit when you google jaime paglia +bookend.

      As with Doctor Who, real life caused me to get so far behind in the 3rd season that I was never able to catch up. But I'll be sad to see it go, nonetheless. Even if I never get the chance to see the whole series, it makes Warehouse 13 richer by sharing its universe in a whimsical, probably-not-entirely-canonical way.

  5. Eureka was one of those shows that I never got around to watching, but it made me happy to know that it was on the air. Getting cancelled sucks, but being able to have the time to wrap things up is a rarity these days.

    • Yeah, I gotta catch up with the series on DVD. I'm ashamed to say, after viewing ALL of season 1 on DVD, the ONLY Eureka episode I watched on TV was part of the crossover with Warehouse 13 (another good show).

    • US Being Human is OK. Not great, but I do enjoy it for what it is. Other than that, yeah the network can pretty much get flushed now for all i care.

      • Funny you'd list the US being human as a reason for the networks continued existence. Personally, I think it kind of sucked. Compared to the the original BBC version the US one was just shallow and boring. and the fact that the SO "Twilight-ed" it up is laughable. the Vamps on the US Being Human are one step away from freaking sparkling in the sun.

        No offense to anyone who's a fan, I just think it's a pretty cheap remake of a good original series. I don't get why they bothered making it when they could have just re-aired the BBC version. Surely that'd cost less then making a whole new series.

  6. Syfy's making way for the newest reality series: Ghost Hunter Wrestlemania! Joing your favorite WWE stars outside of the ring as they look for nonexistent creepy-ass sounds in America's best historical tourist traps!

  7. I've watched Eureka from the beginning – because I was so excited there's a show about science. And it was – originally – about science. They've lost more and more "science" since the first season ended. Gotten much more on the drama and relationships and whatnot. Yes, I know that stuff happens, even in science-town, but I still expected science to happen. More than fairy tales and yeah-rights.
    I love Warehouse 13 because it's make-believe. I love the Big Bang Theory because it's science. I've been trying to continue to love Eureka in spite of its lacking science.

    The bad news, though, is SyFy is running out of shows to let wrestlers appear on now.

    Unless they decide to do a paranormal reality show where wrestlers beat up ghosts. (Is it even possible to say "paranormal reality? I mean, really.)

    • *voiceover*
      "One of the things that you learn as a spy is not to talk to anyone that works in Hollywood…"

  8. I like that you're rolling with the shark idea from the last comic.

    I was honestly surprised that no one came up with CSI (Crime Shark Investigation): Miami

    Coroner: It looks like this car fell on the victims limbs and severed them.

    Sharkuso: It looks like that Ferrari cost this guy *glasses* an arm and a leg…

    YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH!

  9. I find it cool that Eureka, Warehouse 13, and now Alphas all share the same mythical universe. The problem is that this universe is being maintained by the SyFy Network… I wonder if Eureka can get a Starz deal for a Season 7 like Torchwood did?

    • I don't think Starz thing would work. The majority of the viewership for Torchwood still comes from BBC, thus most the $$. Unless you can convince the Brits to watch Eureka I don't think there would be enough $$$ to produce the show.

      Gonna miss the show. It's the only sci-fi show I've ever got my wife to watch with me.

      • @ Radec

        You couldn't even get her to watch "Stargate: Atlantis", the TV show you were in for four years?

        No wonder McKay walked all over your ass, not man enough to even get your wife to park her ass in front of the boob-tube for 44 minutes to watch you risk your life week-to-week.

        • @ seriously
          Uhh, that would be Radek-with a K, not Radec
          Hint-Try making a killzone reference, that would make much more sense.
          R

      • My wife just watched the whole Eureka run without me. I still haven't seen an episode. The geek apprentice has become the geek master.

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