Flash Gordon 8/17

Well, that’s two episodes down, and Flash Gordon is still in Vancouver … oh, I mean, on Earth. Which looks a lot like Vancouver. The one shot of the ice smuggler at the Mongonian police station looked like Vancouver, too. Maybe Mongo is Canada. That would explain a lot, like why Canadians are always shooting sex rays all over the place.

I can’t say I cared for the male Mongonian bounty hunter. He looked and acted too much like a professional wrestler. I kept expecting him to hit Flash with a chair when he wasn’t looking and steal his belt. Also, I was surprised that the female bounty hunter was willing to kiss him, because it didn’t look like the guy had brushed his teeth during the five years he spent in the dungeon.

Um, I did notice there was a bondage scene in the episode. But don’t get all excited on my behalf, the ropework was very sloppy. You’d think a bounty hunter would know of better ways to tie people up than winding rope round and round them like they was bobbins. Also, what with the similar appearance of all the female characters in the show, it was kinda hard to tell if Flash was tied to Dale or Aura, or his mom or some innocent passer-by.

The water smuggling and so forth that was the main plot on Mongo felt very old-school Los Angeles detective noir to me. All this feuding and killing over water rights – wouldn’t be surprised if the series ends with someone saying, “Let it go, Flash – it’s Mongotown.”

Anyway, I’m glad they seem to be planning to get Flash to Mongo for good by episode 3. I think they should do that fast, before SciFi Channel cancels the show.

100% (at least) improvement over the pilot. Enough that I will watch it again, but it should know that it is on a very, very, very short leash.

Was anybody the least bit surprised when [del]the Water Commissioner[/del] Mongo showed such concern for the wellbeing of the sick girl, but still had her father executed?

And yes, that was incredibly sloppy bondage. I thought of you and your comments in the previous thread as soon as I saw it, Evil Captor.

What’s 100% of zero again?

Boring and predictable. Golly, the busted hole-puncher sends you to oblivion? Wonder who that will happen to? The smuggler (who probably should have used plastic bags) has a sick daughter? Wonder how that will turn out?

This has one more episode before I write it off.

Just saw this last night for the first time and was so majorly underwhelmed. Could they have found a less exotic Ming? The 1980s movie had its problems but Max von Sydow was at least properly odd and menacing, but this guy looks like Larry Birkhead’s older brother. Even a Jr. College theater department could have cooked up a more imperial and demented outfit and makeup job (unless they’re trying to make him mundane, in which case “Why?”).

I saw it during a chase scene for about two minutes and it left me with no desire to know how the scene turned out or to ever tune in again. They should have known they had a stinker and never aired it.

So this is what Thun and Jugrid are going to look like. Well, it could have been a lot worse. It’s actually pretty close to the way Alex Raymond originally drew the Lion Men. Given the show’s low budget, elaborate facial prosthenic make-up would probably have been badly done.

I admit, “Arborean” is a rather silly name. But, in my opinion, “Verdan” is just as bad. They’re not arboreal tree-dwellers, they’re verdant tree-huggers!

The cute bounty hunter chick is a Verdan, and her name is Baylin. Does she have a brother named Barin? Or is she going to completely replace the role of Barin? If so, what does the future hold for Aura? Would the network suits have the courage to follow through on that storyline?

Ming rules by controlling the world’s water supply. I am trying to decide if this is an homage to Larry Niven’s novel World Out Of Time, or just a rip-off of the movie Ice Pirates.

No, but I actually liked that scene. It is just the sort of over-the-top sadism that the comic-strip Ming would have done.

I watched the show for the first time last night. Evil Captor is right about the bondage scene – not too good!

I will probably keep watching it just bacause I enjoy looking at Karen Cliche (the other girls are nice to look at as well, but she is my favorite) – I have had a crush on her since first seeing her in the old syndicated series “Adventure Inc.”. Heck, maybe she will even get KOed and captured before the network cancels the series!

Does any one know how the show is doing in the Nielson ratings?

I can’t get past Flash living with his Mother. :rolleyes:

Oh, I agree. It was set up perfectly by the conversation with his daughter. I wonder if there’s going to be any follow-up… could the father’s execution turn into the basis for a revolt?

I don’t know, the Flash taht I alwasy knew would never have gladly sent someone to their death… Now, I know that this “interdemsional” stuff is a mystery and all, but Flash would’ve done everything in his power to be-friend angryMan to gain an Ally in his quest to stop Ming…

Oh, but this is the Flash that has daddy issues and can’t quite seem to get to Mongo.


I am somewhat underwhelmed by the series.
As far as Ming goes, I am reminded of the Tom Smith song Rocket Ride.

This Ming ain’t it.

So… any Hawkmen yet?

I saw the pilot. I thought it was awful. Achingly bad. I might have actually had more fun punching myself in the nuts. It takes forever for the plot to even get started. Instead we get this attempt at romantic tension that takes up a remarkable amount of time for being so tacked on and obligatory. Whatever this “chemistry” thing is, this wasn’t it. The first sign of menace we see is the bad guys supposedly in a space ship, but it appeared to actually be some kind of utility corridor at best. If it was an actual built set, it was nothing but pipes and a short section of mesh catwalk. They holoprojected a display in front of these guys who had no place to sit, and that’s what was supposed to make it look like a spaceship. It’s come to this: computer animation is now cheaper than building sets.

Of course, any revival of old pulp/serials franchises requires figuring out what to do with the racial content. Back in the day, the bad guy was of course an inscrutable Chinaman. In the 80’s movie, they kept the oriental trappings, but cast the whitest guy on earth to play him. This time they seem to be trying to avoid the issue by making us so bored with the villain we don’t care what stereotype he may represent. But he’s still called Ming.

Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s very progressive of the Sci-Fi Channel to give some guys in the mail room a chance to be writers. But maybe they could have had somebody check up on what they were churning out before it went into production.

Hire George Takei. He can swashbuckle, a critical part of wearing a cape, and he is a seasoned science fiction actor, not a racial stereotype. :slight_smile:

Yeah, but Takei would need some serious platform shoes. He’s too short to be the ruler of the Universe (but I agree otherwise he’d be great).

I think Takei wuold be great, too, but I’d be saddened to see him saddled with the kind of role the creators of this series are likely to produce. Right now what we got is Ming, the Evil Middle Manager of Mongo.

Takei is one of many Asian actors who could play a sufficiently menacing Ming, without the “yellow peril” stereotypes originally associated with the role. Heck, I have always thought of Ming as a kind of spacegoing Genghis Kahn, something that done well would be lots of fun.

Besides an Asian Ming would give them and excuse to cast an Asian actress in the daughter role, assuring that when the three lead female characters were in one room, there would be one who didn’t have to wear a name tag.

The whole show just projects the idea that it’s really a bunch of college kids tromping around Vancouver with a video camera. I can’t put my finger on why exactly, but all Mongo interiors scream “soundstage!” while the costumes similarly evoke images of JoAnn fabric outlets and seamsters whose sole experience involves grade school Halloween costumes. The actors are fairly attractive, but have zero charisma. Or maybe the director just fails to elicit any charisma or chemistry.

But I think all this could have been relatively alright, if they’d invested in decent writers. Nothing is howlingly bad, it’s just all really boring. I found myself thinking about watching *Buffy *reruns, and how I’ll read the episode description and think, “I’m not really fond of that one,” but wind up enjoying it just for all the fun dialog and character interaction. And how Flash Gordon is almost, but not quite, untirely unlike that experience.

As for the identical female leads, it struck me in this episode that not only are they physically similar, but one is named Dale Arden, and another Balen Verden. Are they *trying *to confuse people?

I can just see him, “I promise your daughter will be cared for.” Smile, swish of with cape in the wind, and over his shoulder, “Proceed with the execution.”

I keep expecting him to turn to a flunky, and ask him, “Did you get that memo about the new cover sheets for the TPS reports?”