How 'Farscape' influenced The CW's 'Cult' (and whatever happened to those 'Farscape' webisodes?)

Tuesday, 19 February 2013 01:49 PM Written by 

Farscape LogoPASADENA, Calif. –  The CW's "Cult" (9 tonight, WPCW), which I reviewed Sunday in TV Week, was created by Rockne S. O'Bannon, who previously created Syfy's "Farscape," a series that inspired its own cult fandom.

At a January CW press conference, O'Bannon said no specific, direct fan experiences inspired "Cult."

"The origin of the show actually did come out of my 'Farscape' experience where I witnessed the kind of incredible fan passion for a show and the ability of fans to kind of find each other through social media and connect up," O'Bannon said. "And in the instance of, 'Farscape' -- which is a very kind of benign science-fiction adventure show, but it started me thinking what if the show were something with a little bit darker edge and what kind of fans would that then draw? And so 'Farscape' obviously was the kind of catalyst for the idea."

Read more after the jump. ...

Fellow executive producer Josh Schwartz ("Gossip Girl," "Chuck," "The O.C.") is no stranger to fandom himself.

"Obviously 'Farscape' is very different from other shows that I've produced," he acknowledged, "but the level of fan passion that you get, whether it's about a storyline or about shipping a particular couple on that show, it crosses over any genre and people feel a tremendous amount of ownership and investment in their shows. And now you have such access to the people creating and writing those shows and starring on those shows that you also feel as if you can control that conversation as well. And so when things don't go the way you have tweeted to the show's producers or writers or actors, you know, there's a certain level of animosity that can start to grow."

As for those "Farscape" webisodes that were announced in 2007 with O'Bannon developing them, fans should not hold their breath. O'Bannon said there are no plans to revive the series in any form.

"There are no plans right at the moment but I get a call from Brian Henson every three months or so about keeping it alive, what we can do," O'Bannon said, adding that the websidoes simply did not come together. "We couldn't get it to work. It was an expensive show to make initially. To try to make webisodes that didn't look under-nourished relative to the original show, we couldn't figure out a way to do that. Believe me, we took a huge swing at it. We tried to make it happen but everything we came up with was such a diminished version of 'Farscape,' we just didn't want to do it."

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