In July, the current Sci-Fi channel, home of Stargate, Battlestar Galactica, Eureka, Dr. Who, and other science fiction series, will be changed to SyFy. What idiot decided that?
On various social sites, the word is that NBC, by changing the name to a homophone, could own the name, and corresponding logo. That may be, but there is the other view, the darker one, that it will allow disassociation with the core of what the network was put there for – the viewing and promoting of great science fiction, and sometimes fantasy, programming.
For a couple of years now, NBC has been moving away from that goal. It has put things as unattached to science fiction as wrestling on in prime time. It has made the core viewer turn off the channel on most weekends, too, as most of what is shown during those 48 hours are really bad horror flicks, made for television, with name stars, but scripts that must have come from aspiring fourth graders. From there, it is all down hill, with a great number of infomercials finding their way onto the schedule.
Also foisted on the science fiction lover, a series of programs that are tangentially related, but poorly done, presumably on budgets that would do any high school production proud. Ghost Hunters, Destination Truth, and Scare Tactics are some of these.
Since there are no series on main stream television that really qualify as science fiction, it is no wonder that many flock here for nourishment, but when the ‘suits’ at NBC confer with the bean counters, the channel we knew and loved may soon change into something no one will recognize as related to what we fondly remember.
The time for e-mails, letters, and possibly telegrams has come. If the Sci-Fi channel is to be saved, it will have to be between now and the July 1 ‘facelift’. Otherwise, people may start wondering, when passing by the channel, in a surfing session, what ‘siffy’ means.