Thursday 1 December 2011


Life's Too Short
1x03 Episode 3
[Watch it (again) in HD on iPlayer.]

The Mentalist
4x02 Little Red Book
[Watch it (again) on Demand 5.]

4x01 (14/3/11 edition)
I'm sure there's a reason these Pointless repeats just skipped two episodes into the start of series four... I just don't have any idea what it might be. Still, this is the series I started watching in (albeit later on) and now everything looks more familiar -- the higher-definition question screen, the lack of needless repetition of scores on said screen, the more dramatic lighting... Super.
[Watch it (again) on iPlayer.]

2x03 Episode 3
[Watch it (again) in HD on iPlayer.]


Andrew Stanton Tells Me It’s On His Agenda To Completely Change The Way Movies Are Made by Brendon Connelly
(from Bleeding Cool)
On how Pixar make movies differently, and why live-action should be done that way too.

A daily dose of sci-fi - Day 18

Best use of special effects on the small screen

Much like yesterday's film topic, there's a lot to choose from here. TV special effects were even cheaper for even longer, but since at least the '80s there's been some excellent model work, and in the last decade or so CGI has caught up too. Big budget films still rule this arena, but there are plenty of lower budget (and, certainly, direct-to-DVD) ones with poorer effects than, say, Doctor Who.

And actually, it's from that very series that this choice comes...

I said yesterday that effects had to be iconic and I think this one is. It also represents the culmination of decades of dreams. Daleks have been seen invading en masse in comic strips since the '60s, but the TV series has always been limited to half a dozen real ones and maybe some cardboard cutouts (seriously, they used to use cardboard cutouts).

But with the development and cost-effectiveness of CG, this became an on-screen reality in 2005. And it was incredible. Thousands of Daleks, pouring through space... Click the link above for a video clip if you need reminding.

Much like yesterday's choice, there may be better-realised, or even more groundbreaking, examples of special effects work in TV. But this beats many of them for sheer impressiveness and the realisation of all those childhood imaginings.


Read about a daily dose of sci-fi, with links to the rest of the series, here.