Science-Fiction Weekly – Star Wars Rebels, Solo, Lost In Space, The Dark Tower, Heaven's Vault
Danger, Will Robinson. Netflix is revisiting science-fiction's past with a reboot of the 1965 television show Lost in Space. Set 30 years in the future at a point when Earth's resources are dwindling, the Robinson family is tasked to travel the cosmos to find a new home for mankind. Their mission doesn't go as planned, and they are thrown off course. Their fate is sewn to two outsiders: Don West, a blue-collar contractor who is in it for himself, and the mysterious and charismatic Dr. Smith, who has a different vision of the future. The first 10-episode season of Lost in Space stars Toby Stephens (Black Sails) as John Robinson and Molly Parker (House of Cards) as Maureen Robinson. The show is currently slated to launch on April 13. You can take your first look at the Robinsons in the teaser trailer below.
Neflix is currently the streaming service of choice for big-budget original series, but Amazon wants to change that narrative. Along with an upcoming show based on the Lord of the Rings novels, Amazon is adapting Terry Pratchett's Discworld, Iain M Banks' Culture, Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash, Larry Niven's Ringworld, and Steven King's The Dark Tower. The recent film treatment of The Dark Tower didn't do the books justice, but did show the potential it has in the video medium. Amazon's adaptation is in the hands of Glen Mazzara, who was the showrunner for The Walking Dead's third season.
Star Wars Rebels' final episodes are airing now, and are quietly shaking up the Star Wars universe in big (and possibly problematic) ways. The latest episodes, "Wolves and a Door" and "A World Between Worlds," hammer home closure for the series, while also introducing new ideas into Star Wars' canon, including what appears to be force-powered time travel. Obi-Wan's line "The Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us; it binds the galaxy together" is heard by Ezra years before he said it. He also hears Princess Leia, Rey, and Kylo Ren. I won't spoil anything else, but I have a bad feeling about what this new wrinkle in the lore could mean for Star Wars moving forward. Ezra doesn't just hear voices. Something big happens and it's a game changer. The Force Awakens toyed with this concept when Rey grabbed the lightsaber, but Rebels goes beyond teasing the idea of time travel. It now exists in Star Wars. I'm still in somewhat of a state of shock from this development. It really does change everything.
Speaking of time travel, fans may have uncovered the successor to Rebels through a trademark listing for something called Star Wars Resistance. The listing features the same fields as all Star Wars movies and shows, and the name alone screams of a follow up to Rebels. Disney has several shows in development for its forthcoming streaming service, and we should start hearing about them soon, as they are believed to launch next year.
A trip to the past Star Wars fans seem hesitant to take is Solo: A Star Wars Story. Random House Books has revealed where exactly this prequel film fits into the overall Star Wars canonical timeline. It appears to be roughly 10 years before the Battle of Yavin. Oddly, the Last Shot book that is slotted before Solo, jumps all over the place in time. Here's Random House's synopsis for Last Shot:
THEN: It’s one of the galaxy’s most dangerous secrets: a mysterious transmitter with unknown power and a reward for its discovery that most could only dream of claiming. But those who fly the Millennium Falcon throughout its infamous history aren’t your average scoundrels. Not once, but twice, the crew of the Falcon tries to claim the elusive prize—first, Lando Calrissian and the droid L3-37 at the dawn of an ambitious career, and later, a young and hungry Han Solo with the help of his copilot, Chewbacca. But the device’s creator, the volatile criminal Fyzen Gor, isn’t interested in sharing. And Gor knows how to hold a grudge....
NOW: It’s been ten years since the rebel hero Han Solo last encountered Fyzen Gor. After mounting a successful rebellion against the Empire and starting a family with an Alderaanian princess, Han hasn’t given much thought to the mad inventor. But when Lando turns up at Han’s doorstep in the middle of the night, it’s Fyzen’s assassins that he’s running from. And without Han’s help, Lando—and all life on Cloud City—will be annihilated.
With the assistance of a young hotshot pilot, an Ewok slicer prodigy, the woman who might be the love of Lando’s life, and Han’s best and furriest friend, the two most notorious scoundrels in the New Republic are working together once more. They’ll have to journey across the stars—and into the past—before Gor uses the device’s power to reshape the galaxy.
Last Shot launches on April 17, a full month before the film's May 25 release.
If you're in the market specifically for an archaeological science-fiction adventure game, keep your eyes out for Heaven's Vault, a new game from Inkle, the creators of 80 Days. Heaven's Vault tasks players to find a missing roboticist by exploring ancient ruins filled with hieroglyphs. Figuring out what these hieroglyphs say will further the story, but you won't necessarily know you are translating them the right way, as you may be lead down the wrong path. The hieroglyphs are inspired by ancient Egyptian and Chinese writing systems. Inkle says the "words are formed out of smaller "atoms", as they often are in German."
Heaven's Vault sounds like it's going to be a unique puzzle game, which is currently slated to launch on PlayStation 4, PC, and iOS later this year. You can take a look at the adventure, which also features open world and ship components, below: