Posted by: Peter Hall
Directed by Jeff Renfroe, 2009
Written by Raul Inglis
When the Sci-Fi Channel announced a campaign to re-brand itself as Syfy even non-fans scoffed at the silly name change. When a representative for the network was asked on Twitter why the change was made and how it would impact programming, the official answer was, “Syfy is about catching up to where our programming mix is, not about changing it.”
As I see it that’s not the diplomatic marketing speak of an ombudsman, it’s actually an extremely candid answer. The Sci-Fi Channel has never been about airing Science Fiction. Oh, it’s put the backing to some remarkable and legitimate Sci-Fi, but that programming has always been peripheral to what the network is really about; uncategorical shit.
You’re not going to see anything new or significantly different on Syfy than what the outlet has been airing for years. The only change is that now the community at large has a unique label to place on this particular brand of shit. It may be a stupid name, but it’s distinguished.
If there was any doubt to this just look at the first original film to air under the newly re-branded Syfy moniker, SAND SERPENTS. It’s a production that reeks of tasking, of Suit A to Suit B:
“Remember TREMORS? That movie was awesome! Can we remake it without paying for the name?”
“I don’t see why not. Let me just feed the script into the Syfy Originalmatic and see what comes out.” … “K, got it. Set it in Afghanistan, make the Graboids bigger and call ’em serpents.”
“Who can we get to star in it?”
“How much you wanna spend?”
“You’re right, fuck it.”