This Week in Sci Fi TV: Amazon Will Adapt William Gibson’s The Peripheral, Netflix Will Stage V-Wars, and More

By | April 20, 2018
 

Westworld Team to Bring William Gibson’s The Peripheral to Amazon

Lisa Joy and Jonathan Nolan, who developed the Westworld TV series for HBO, have their next project in the works and it will be landing at the Amazon streaming service. The have received a script-to-series order for their adaptation of the William Gibson (Neuromancer) book The Peripheral. Hollywood Reporter gives the following description of the story:

The Peripheral revolves around Flynne Fisher, a woman in a near-future America in which technology has started to subtly alter society. Flynne discovers a hidden connection to a very different reality — and the dark future of her own.

This series will of course have a lot of thematic similarities with their current show on HBO, and it should debut on Amazon at some point next year.

Ian Somerhalder Will Fight Vampires in the Upcoming V-Wars

Ian Somerhalder spent eight seasons as a vampire on The CW’s Vampire Diaries, and now he will be fighting the blood-suckers in the upcoming Netflix series V-Wars. It is based on the Jonathan Maberry book series and Variety gives the following description of the project:

Ian Somerhalder will star as Dr. Luther Swann, who enters a world of horror when a mysterious disease transforms his best friend, Michael Fayne, into a murderous predator who feeds on other humans. As the disease spreads and more people are transformed, society fractures into opposing camps pitting normal people against the growing number of these vampires. Swann races against time to understand what’s happening, while Fayne rises to become the powerful underground leader of the vampires.

The streaming service has give a ten-episode first season order for the series and it will likely debut early-to-mid-2019.

Sci Fi TV Development: East of West, Transhuman, The Order, and More

This week brings even more sci fi and fantasy TV development announcements as the Peak TV pipeline continues to overflow. Amazon has three more genre series in the works with East of WestTranshuman, and Utopia. The first two come from comic book creator Jonathan Hickman and will be produced by Robert Kirkman’s Skybound Entertainment. Deadline Hollywood gives the following description for the projects:

East of West is set in a reimagined Western landscape where America is divided into seven nations. This iconic science fiction series follows “Death” as he braves his fellow riders, monsters, and corrupt gunslingers in his quest to save his mortal family from the Apocalypse.

Transhuman is a science fiction drama set in the near future. The show centers around a divorced couple, who ran rival major corporations, offering humans the ability to genetically and robotically enhance themselves.

In addition to these two, Amazon has given a nine-episode order for Utopia which based on a British TV series and was previously in development at HBO. Deadline Hollywood gives the following description:

Utopia follows a group of young adults who meet online that are mercilessly hunted by a shadowy deep state organization after they come into possession of a near-mythical cult underground graphic novel. Within the comic’s pages, they discover the conspiracy theories that may actually be real and are forced into the dangerous, unique and ironic position of saving the world.

Netflix has placed a ten-episode order for the supernatural drama The Order which comes from the same production company that produces Syfy’s Van Helsing. Variety gives the following description of the project:

The series follows college freshman Jack Morton, who joins a fabled secret society called The Order. He is thrust into a world of magic, monsters and intrigue. As Jack goes deeper, he uncovers dark family secrets and an underground battle between werewolves and the magical dark arts.

Finally, for this week at least, Syfy has given a series order to Deadly Class, based on the Image Comics series of the same name created by Rick Remender and Wes Craig. CBR.com gives the following description of the comic:

Launched in 2014, Deadly Class is set against the backdrop of the late-1980s counterculture at King’s Dominion High School for the Deadly Arts, where the children of the world’s worst crime families send their children to be trained as assassins.

All of these series will likely be debuting at some point in 2019.

Netflix Picks Up British Series The Innocents

Adding to the number of genre shows on television, Netflix has picked up worldwide distribution for the upcoming British supernatural series The Innocents. Following is the tagline for the show:

After running away from home with her boyfriend, young June finds herself in a harrowing new world as she discovers she has a rare and powerful gift. Secrets, passions and mysterious forces collide as young lovers embark on an odyssey that will challenge everything they know about the world.

It will debut on August 24th and you can see the trailer above.

Sci Fi TV Status Report: MacGyver Gets Renewed, The Expanse Drops in the Ratings

CBS announced a slew of renewals this week and that included spy fi entry MacGyver which is currently winding down its second season. The renewal has been mostly expected because the show has produced decent numbers for a Friday night entry and regularly ranks in the Top 25 for the week among broadcast network shows based on total viewers. Its numbers are down year over year, but not by too much and it is performing just slightly lower than the network’s other two Friday entries. And since it will be going into its third year with the expected twenty-two episode order, that gets it into the syndication stretch and pretty much guarantees it a fourth season pickup. Since it is owned by CBS and since a fourth year will get it to the 88-episode threshold that the syndication market prefers, expect the network to keep the show going even if the ratings drop because the long-term profits from the syndication sale will make up for any short-term losses. MacGyver already plugs up a low-viewership hour on Fridays for CBS and expect the network to keep it in that position for at least two more seasons.

In ratings results, both The Expanse and Krypton slipped for Syfy this week. The former dropped from last week’s premiere to a 0.15 rating based on same day viewing for the 18-49 demographic and the latter slipped to a 0.22 score. Krypton is still looking good for its network and I expect a second season renewal for that one. But The Expanse can’t afford to drop any further if it wants to make it to a fourth season. You can keep up with the ratings results and renewal / cancellation status of your favorite sci fi and fantasy shows at CancelledSciFi.com and the Cancelled Sci Fi Twitter Site.

Sci Fi TV Schedule: Premieres for The Handmaid’s Tale S2, The 100 S5, and 3% S2

Next week brings three more sci fi / fantasy shows to the Spring schedule and one wraps up its current season. On Tuesday, The CW’s post-apocalyptic series The 100 is back for its fifth (and possibly final) season. On Wednesday, the second season of Hulu’s dystopian The Handmaid’s Tale debuts with the first two episodes available for streaming. And on Friday, the Netflix Brazilian sci fi entry 3% returns for its second season with all episodes available for streaming that day. On Sunday, Starz’s Ash vs. Evil Dead up its third season. You can see the full Spring schedule of sci fi and fantasy shows at this link and you can keep up with the weekly listings at this link.

More Sci Fi TV News

Spock will appear in the second Season 2 episode of Star Trek: Discovery and that will be directed by TNG alum Jonathan Frakes.

Stranger Things gets another 80’s veteran as Cary Elwes (The Princess Bride) will be joining the cast in the show’s third season.

Beth Schwartz will be taking over as new showrunner for Arrow starting with its seventh season. Schwartz has been with the show in some capacity since its first season.


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