The saga begins…
As we told you last week, Save Hiatus the webcomic is going on, yes, hiatus for a brief time while we retool it to fit into our working lives without having to use index cards to remember the names of our immediate family members. However, it is vitally important to keep “Hiatus” alive lest the Network think they were correct in dumping it, so I have started a new project: I am writing the novelization of the pilot episode.
This is a huge endeavor. Not only do I have to remain true to the original screenplay by showrunner Manny Ulrich, I have to add motivations and scenes that weren’t seen on screen because written fiction is different from television. There are fewer pictures, it turns out. Knowing the fans as I do, it is virtually certain that not all of you will be happy with my changes. Some of you may feel obligated to inform me of your displeasure, possibly with pipe bombs. I ask that you bear with me, and please keep your criticism constructive and non-lethal. Excerpts will be posted Mondays and Fridays. Once these start piling up I’ll create a page that collects the entire thing so you won’t have to go hunting for earlier passages.
So without further ado, here we go. Hear that? It’s the theme song…
by C. A. Bridges
(Based on the teleplay “Encounter in Forever on the Edge of the City of Tomorrow” by Manny Ulrich)
“Everything has a beginning. And every new beginning is also the end of something else, usually something you’ll miss later when you’re alone and it’s raining and nothing’s on. Moral: I need to drink more.”
– Captain Parvo’s Personal Log
Inky black space, sparkling with gemstone stars, fills your mind to overflowing. The sheer, unfathomable enormity of it threatens to burst open your brain like a child’s balloon. Here and there bright marbles sparkle in the distant sunlight but they remain marbles, easily lost or discarded. Below you is the marble that keeps you alive. Earth is wrapped in a frigid embrace, streaked with blue and green and wreathed in fluffy white fluffiness, but from up here it is chillingly apparent that almost anything — natural disaster, particularly viral pathogen, sufficiently violent political upheaval, asteroid strike, planetary temperature rising a mere 10 degrees — could take that paper-thin ecosystem keeping humanity alive and rip it away, leaving billions of souls gasping and boiling where they fell, even as–
Actually, spaceflight only affects you that way if you stick with classical music. That’s why early spaceflight pilots were awoken with peppy tunes piped in from ground control; enough replays of “Thus Spake Zarathustra” could make anyone want to set their controls for the heart of downtown Houston and fire all thrusters. And the song chosen for inclusion in humanity’s letter-in-the-bottle Voyager launch was The Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” which should have served to warn any approaching aliens of both our race’s general crankiness and our love of the double negative.
Judging from the pounding bass line that was just barely audible through the thin air of the stratosphere, the captain of the small two-man Orbhopper ship currently blasting over the horizon preferred to vanquish the terrifying insignificance that space bestows by cranking up “Exhaust Port Woman, You’re a Shot in a Million” by The Walloping Pandroids. Also a good choice.
But music aside, what really helps you ignore the vastness of eternity is to be really, really pissed off.