21 votes

'Foundation' — Teaser

17 comments

  1. [12]
    determinism
    Link
    It's been a while since I read this series but the clips they showed were relatively unrecognizable to me (other than the allusions to psychohistory in the dialogue). I didn't even think Hari...

    It's been a while since I read this series but the clips they showed were relatively unrecognizable to me (other than the allusions to psychohistory in the dialogue). I didn't even think Hari Seldon's predictions were appreciated or broadly known by his contemporaries other than a small group that he convinced to follow him.

    5 votes
    1. [11]
      Omnicrola
      Link Parent
      Skipping over the prequel books to the original 1951 story, it starts with Hari standing trial for allegations if reason for predicting the fall of the empire. So yes, his work is quite well...

      Skipping over the prequel books to the original 1951 story, it starts with Hari standing trial for allegations if reason for predicting the fall of the empire. So yes, his work is quite well known, though misunderstood.

      While I admire this series greatly, I do hope that the writers of the TV series take some creative liberties. Since the original "trilogy" was written as a series of short stories the pacing feels odd when I went back and read them again as an adult. I think there's great opportunity for foreshadowing and misdirection of there audience using visual storytelling. I also hope they don't try to ham-fist a single protagonist into the whole series, and keep switching them as time moves forward.

      5 votes
      1. [9]
        Algernon_Asimov
        Link Parent
        But there is a single protagonist who spans the whole series, even if they spend much of the time in the background, hidden and unseen. From what other people are saying, that character appears in...

        I also hope they don't try to ham-fist a single protagonist into the whole series

        But there is a single protagonist who spans the whole series, even if they spend much of the time in the background, hidden and unseen. From what other people are saying, that character appears in this trailer, in a time period when the character was not included in the stories. (I don't know who's who in this trailer, but other people have done the detective work on IMDB to match actors' faces to actors' names to characters' names.)

        It seems the writers have taken advantage of the existence of this background character to provide that single protagonist so that the audience has a sense of continuity. Because we all know television audiences wouldn't cope with having a new set of characters every season! /s

        3 votes
        1. [8]
          NaraVara
          Link Parent
          Do we need to do spoiler space for something like this? The series is ancient and I feel like the statute of limitations on spoilers should have passed, but I don't know what the etiquette is. In...

          From what other people are saying, that character appears in this trailer, in a time period when the character was not included in the stories

          Do we need to do spoiler space for something like this? The series is ancient and I feel like the statute of limitations on spoilers should have passed, but I don't know what the etiquette is. In any case, just assume spoilers below:

          Seldon shows up in holographic form periodically as a "pre-recorded" message. For modern audiences it wouldn't be too hard to re-imagine him as a Siri-esque virtual assistant instead if they want a more permanent character, but I really think his role would work better as a narrator. I'm not sure when he shows up in a time period where he wasn't in the series though. The trailer is really unclear about who anyone is or when anything is taking place so I don't know how people would draw that conclusion.

          There is a lot that will need reimagining in the Foundation series. One of the funny things about it is the series' assumption that nuclear technology will transform everything. People have nuclear toothbrushes and communications arrays and all kinds of stuff where it's hard to imagine what nuclear power could even do. If I was remaking it today, I would probably change it to talk about machine learning/automation everything. It also just works better for a "society gets lazy and indolent until it collapses, except for a secret society of AI/ML researchers since they're the only ones who know how anything actually works" tale.

          4 votes
          1. [3]
            mat
            Link Parent
            fwiw my personal take on spoilers is that there is no statute of limitations. Just because the books are old doesn't mean everyone has read them. The story isn't any less spoiled for a new reader...

            I feel like the statute of limitations on spoilers should have passed, but I don't know what the etiquette is.

            fwiw my personal take on spoilers is that there is no statute of limitations. Just because the books are old doesn't mean everyone has read them. The story isn't any less spoiled for a new reader by knowing who the character @Algernon_Asimov is alluding to (ps, it's not Sheldon) just because the books were published last century.

            The usual relevant XKCD, although it's relevant in a slightly different way here.

            My take is that spoilers should always be avoided and/or hide-tagged unless you're in an explicitly defined spoileriffic thread.

            5 votes
            1. [2]
              NaraVara
              Link Parent
              Very few stories actually hinge on surprise. And a well constructed story should hold up regardless of whether the surprise has been ruined or not because it's about how the characters feel about...

              Just because the books are old doesn't mean everyone has read them.

              Very few stories actually hinge on surprise. And a well constructed story should hold up regardless of whether the surprise has been ruined or not because it's about how the characters feel about the surprise moreso than the reader. If it's an actual mystery novel it makes sense, but for most things I think the zealotry around spoilers is both extreme and deleterious to quality discussion or critique.

              2 votes
              1. mat
                Link Parent
                It's not so much surprises, although that does happen sometimes, it's more that I prefer to experience a narrative through reading/watching/whatever that narrative itself rather than learning...

                It's not so much surprises, although that does happen sometimes, it's more that I prefer to experience a narrative through reading/watching/whatever that narrative itself rather than learning about it by proxy. Most spoilers aren't of the "Hermione shoots Dumbledore!" ilk, but more just taking away something from the enjoyment of experiencing something for the first time. It's also why I rarely read reviews in advance of reading something.

                You make perfectly valid points regarding the discussion of things but it's easy enough to have a known-spoilerful thread if people want to discuss plot details (and I'll happily join such threads once I've seen/read the media in question). But it's about giving people the choice not to have things spoiled if they don't want such. I know people who love spoilers and actively seek them out, and people who don't care about them - and that's fine. I just want a clear way to be able avoid them, because for me they.. well... spoil things.

                Although in this particular instance, it would make quite a difference to know that character is around.

                4 votes
          2. [3]
            Algernon_Asimov
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            I used to moderate a Star Trek subreddit where spoiler-protection was actively prevented: spoiler-tagging was deactivated, and people who wrote too circumspectly would find their post/comment...

            Do we need to do spoiler space for something like this?

            I used to moderate a Star Trek subreddit where spoiler-protection was actively prevented: spoiler-tagging was deactivated, and people who wrote too circumspectly would find their post/comment removed and be asked to be more direct. And I 100% supported that approach. If someone wants to protect themself from spoilers in a brand-new Star Trek series, they should take some responsibility for their own preference by not hanging around a Star Trek subreddit where the new series is being discussed. It's impossible to discuss something properly if people are continually having to write in hints ("Remember when that character did that thing?").

            And I'm aware that spoilers can make you enjoy stories more.

            However... I've also been the victim of a few pitchfork-bearing mobs when I revealed something that people think should be protected as a spoiler. So I've learned to be circumspect when I'm not in a known pro-spoiler environment.

            Seldon shows up in holographic form periodically as a "pre-recorded" message.

            @determinism and @mat are correct: the character I was hinting at is not Hari Seldon.

            It's R. Daneel Olivaw. The grand architect of humanity's development from the times of humanity's second expansion into space 9,000 years before the Galactic Empire, through the 12,000-year life of the Galactic Empire, to the Empire's collapse, and then on to the Foundation's rise - and Gaia's rise. He's the only character who exists throughout the entire series, living for over 20,000 years, and guiding everything from behind the scenes.

            And his existence is necessarily a spoiler, because Asimov himself had no idea when he wrote the first Foundation stories in 1940, or created the character of R. Daneel Olivaw in 1952, that he would bring Daneel into the Foundation stories in the 1980s. The early Foundation stories don't mention Daneel because Asimov hadn't created him yet. The only way to bring Daneel into the later stories is to retcon the earlier stories and say that Daneel was there all along, but working secretly behind the scenes. His appearance in the later Foundation stories is therefore a surprise to both the characters and readers of those stories - and it's supposed to be a surprise.

            However, if the audience needs a character to provide continuity throughout the Foundation television series, Daneel is it. He already is that character in the books. When Asimov linked his Robots stories to his Foundation stories, he made Daneel the protagonist of the now-combined mega-series, and demoted Hari Seldon to second place.

            Supposedly, Daneel appears in this trailer, albeit played by a female actor.

            (P.S. I've now added a "spoiler" tag to this thread.)

            3 votes
            1. [2]
              NaraVara
              Link Parent
              I'm not sure how people are concluding that? The only people named in the trailer subtitles are Seldon and Gaal.

              Supposedly, Daneel appears in this trailer, albeit played by a female actor.

              I'm not sure how people are concluding that? The only people named in the trailer subtitles are Seldon and Gaal.

              1 vote
              1. Algernon_Asimov
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                People are seeing actors in the trailer, and matching those actors in the cast list against their character names. In this case, they're seeing the actor Laura Birn in a couple of scenes, and...

                People are seeing actors in the trailer, and matching those actors in the cast list against their character names.

                In this case, they're seeing the actor Laura Birn in a couple of scenes, and matching her against her character name of Demerzel in the cast list. In the Foundation prequels, Eto Demerzel was one of the roles played by Daneel to perform his manipulations. Ergo, Daneel is played by a woman.

                It's interesting to note that, of the characters listed in the series cast, only 4 of them were in Asimov's stories. The rest of the characters are non-canonical.

                1 vote
          3. determinism
            Link Parent
            Jehoshaphat! I don't think Seldon is the character that is being referred to here.

            From what other people are saying, that character appears in this trailer, in a time period when the character was not included in the stories

            Jehoshaphat! I don't think Seldon is the character that is being referred to here.

            2 votes
      2. DonQuixote
        Link Parent
        Regarding a single protagonist and foreshadowing, you almost make me wish there was a true JarJar Binks character in the earlier part, because I'm of the opinion George Lucas was borrowing from...

        Regarding a single protagonist and foreshadowing, you almost make me wish there was a true JarJar Binks character in the earlier part, because I'm of the opinion George Lucas was borrowing from Asimov and the Foundation Series when he wrote Episode One.

  2. mrnd
    Link
    I'm somewhat interested in what they manage to do, but I'm not very hopeful. The most I can say based on this trailer is that it looks very "dark", in more than one sense. I fear they're going for...

    I'm somewhat interested in what they manage to do, but I'm not very hopeful.

    The most I can say based on this trailer is that it looks very "dark", in more than one sense.

    I fear they're going for generic gritty scifi mood, and that doesn't fit at all with how I imagined Foundation.

    4 votes
  3. [2]
    zptc
    Link
    Starting off with a comparison to/name drop of Star Wars doesn't give me hope. Even though it's true that Foundation did influence SW to an extent, "rousing action-adventure hero's journey" and...

    Starting off with a comparison to/name drop of Star Wars doesn't give me hope. Even though it's true that Foundation did influence SW to an extent, "rousing action-adventure hero's journey" and "Foundation" are two very different things.

    4 votes
    1. NaraVara
      Link Parent
      I thought trying to thematically link Apple Inc. with the First Foundation was the most eye-rolly part of the whole thing myself.

      I thought trying to thematically link Apple Inc. with the First Foundation was the most eye-rolly part of the whole thing myself.

      7 votes
  4. YogyrtMaej
    Link
    This both gives me hope and spurs angst for Denis Villeneuve's 2020 Dune adaptation. The Foundation trailer set the bar high, and I mean high.

    This both gives me hope and spurs angst for Denis Villeneuve's 2020 Dune adaptation. The Foundation trailer set the bar high, and I mean high.

    1 vote
  5. monarda
    Link
    I don't know how I missed this when it was first posted, and I am so happy to hear about it! The trailer doesn't at all instill the feelings I had when I read the books, which I have read many...

    I don't know how I missed this when it was first posted, and I am so happy to hear about it! The trailer doesn't at all instill the feelings I had when I read the books, which I have read many times, but I am excited anyway.

    I don't have Appletv, but I've been meaning to drop my Prime account soonish anyway. Does anyone know if this will be dished out in episodes, or if it will be bingeable on release?

    1 vote