5 Fall Shows That Could Be Improved With A Little Scifi

Click to viewTry as hard as you like - and we've tried, trust us - but a fan cannot live by scifi alone. That's the only explanation we have for the fact that we're all secretly also addicted to non-SF shows like Gossip Girl, Psych and Grey's Anatomy. But even while we watch these shows, there's a little voice in the back of our head that asks, wouldn't it be better if they all had lasers and space ships? So we decided to figure out which fall shows most need some science fiction, and how we'd do it.90210: It may be one of the buzz new shows of the season, but let's face it: the revamp of Beverly Hills 90210 is never going to replace Gossip Girl (or, if you're me, The OC) in our hearts. After all, who cares about anyone other than the few returning original cast members? We say, use that to your advantage, and reveal that Shannon Doherty, Jennie Garth and Jason Priestly are the only humans left in Beverly Hills, and that the secret story arc of the first season is their slow discovery that every other character in the show is actually a Terminator. It may sound crazy now, but give it a moment to sink in, and then realize that you've laid the groundwork for that Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles crossover where we discover that David Silver was really an undercover Derek Reece all along.


Prison Break: Sure, Lincoln and Michael have already spent three seasons escaping from prisons and getting more and more involved with a labyrinthine conspiracy that threatens to make The X-Files understandable in comparison. But here're seven words that will change everything: Now they're in a prison... in space. Imagine the acting quality of Prison Break mixed with the special effect quality of, say, Moonraker, and the results can be summed up in two words: Ratings bonanza. Who could resist tuning in to see how our heroes could tattoo the schematics of an entire space station on their bodies?

House: We admit it; we're already in love with Hugh Laurie's snarky doctor and his parade of patients with ever more ridiculous and unlikely ailments. We're happy that they're pretty much shunted Cameron and Chase off to the side (If only because we remember Chase's stint on Australian soap opera Neighbours), and we're anxiously waiting to see the emotional fall-out of last season's finale that, yes, may have brought tears to our eyes. But that doesn't mean that sci-fi wouldn't make it better. This is what we're suggesting: Dr. Gregory House, Cyborg Physician. It's perfect! It make his tantrums more dangerous - watch out for that arm-loaded concussion cannon! - and makes his his constant struggle with his own humanity that much more literal. And if you think that Laurie's American accent is good acting, just wait until you've seen his robotic movements.


Law & Order: Criminal Intent: If you've been wondering how Vincent D'Onofrio's Bobby Goren can solve all those cases with just a squint of his eyes and uncanny intuition, we've got the best answer possible - He's an alien. And so is the show's new detective this season, as played by Jeff Goldblum because, well, come on; it's Jeff Goldblum. While the introduction of extra-terrestrials may upset some fans of the long-running cop franchise, we're betting that when everyone else sees the emotional turmoil brought on by the revelation - as well as Goren's sweet new UFO ride - new viewers will be jumping on board quicker than you can say "Alien Nation."


This Old House: Admit it; you've been a fan of PBS' long-running home improvement show since Steve Thomas was a host, and you're wondering what science fiction could do to give Norm Abrams a new coat of paint. Well, we're suggesting that producers keep the name and start over from scratch. I mean, it's one thing to spend weeks watching people put up drywall and talk about plumbing, but what if the title of the show was taken literally, and Norm, Kevin O'Connor, Tom Silva and the rest of the crew travelled back in time to view the original construction of the houses in question? Just imagine the excitement of watching fine Bostonians dealing with squalid conditions in the late 1800s while trying to see what kind of lumber was used, and then get upset that PBS' budget doesn't stretch to the research, experimentation and materials necessary to create a time machine.

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