TV show creators worth knowing about, part 1

These are people who created brilliant science fiction and fantasy TV shows. I’ll mention all their SF & F TV shows, as well as some of their other projects. These are people I’m most likely to follow wherever they go — TV shows, comics, books, movies. Many of them also had some interesting-sounding projects that didn’t end up getting completed.

J.J. Abrams

Abrams’ first show of a science fictional nature was Alias, which I haven’t seen (yet). He co-created the brilliant shows Lost and Fringe. He served as executive producer on various shows, including Person of Interest, Revolution, and Westworld. The first movie he directed was the amazing Mission: Impossible III. He’s the only person to have a big impact in both the Star Trek and Star Wars worlds — he directed Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He also directed Super 8. Among other things, Abrams once worked on a Superman movie that didn’t end up getting produced.

  • Masterpieces
    • Lost
    • Fringe

Rick Berman

Berman was a writer and producer on Star Trek: The Next Generation. He oversaw the whole 2nd generation of Star Trek after Gene Roddenberry died. Berman co-created Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise. He also co-wrote all 4 of the TNG movies.

  • Masterpiece
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
  • Great TV shows
    • Star Trek: Enterprise
    • Star Trek: Voyager

Chris Carter

Carter created The X-Files. He also created the spinoff The Lone Gunmen, which I enjoyed. He created Millenium and Harsh Realm, which I’m less interested in. Although I don’t expect him to come up with another show at this point, The X-Files itself might not be over — the recent 6-episode season 10 was successful enough that the network would like more. I think the episodes he wrote for season 10 were not as good as the episodes other people wrote, but I will still happily watch more episodes that come in the future.

  • Masterpiece
    • The X-Files
  • Good TV show
    • The Lone Gunmen

Bryan Fuller

Fuller started out as a writer on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager. He created several brilliant shows of his own but they only lasted 1 or 2 seasons: Dead Like Me, Wonderfalls, and Pushing Daisies. I have a lot of fondness for each of these shows. He did some preliminary work on the upcoming Star Trek: Discovery, but left because he felt he had to focus on his other show American Gods. He wrote for Heroes, and created the show Hannibal — which I’m uninterested in.

  • Great TV shows
    • Dead Like Me
    • Pushing Daisies
    • Wonderfalls

Matt Groening

Groenig wrote and drew the comic strip Life in Hell for many years. He created The Simpsons, which is currently the longest-running US primetime TV show ever. I haven’t watched it in years but it was certainly funny in the old days. Groenig also created an animated science fiction show, Futurama. Futurama was very clever and often hilarious. It initially ran for 5 seasons, later came back for 4 made-for-DVD movies, and later came back for 2 more seasons.

  • Great TV show
    • Futurama

Ronald D. Moore

Moore started out as a writer on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and he also wrote for Deep Space Nine and Voyager. He created the reimagined Battlestar Galactica, which was brilliant, along with its spinoff Caprica, which was great. He worked on the first season of Carniv├ále, and now he’s now working on the show Outlander — which I have some interest in. He co-wrote the TNG movies Generations and First Contact. He also co-wrote the not-so-great Mission: Impossible II.

  • Masterpiece
    • Battlestar Galactica
  • Great TV show
    • Caprica

Michael Piller

Piller was a writer and producer on Star Trek: The Next Generation — he is generally credited as the person who made the show better starting in the 3rd season. He co-created Deep Space Nine and Voyager. Piller co-wrote the movie Star Trek: Insurrection. He created the short-lived Legend and the drama Wildfire. He also created the show The Dead Zone, along with his son Shawn, which I have some interest in watching.

  • Masterpiece
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
  • Great TV show
    • Star Trek: Voyager

Gene Roddenberry

Roddenberry created Star Trek, Star Trek: The Animated Series, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He wrote for shows like Have Gun — Will Travel and created The Lieutenant. After his death other people developed a couple of shows based on his ideas — Andromeda and Earth: Final Conflict. Roddenberry was heavily involved with Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and wrote the novelization of it, but was less involved with the sequels. I still read many books set in the Star Trek universe. Star Trek and TNG were the first science fiction shows I loved — and they have a special place because of their hopeful vision of the future.

  • Masterpiece
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation
  • Show that would have been a masterpiece if I’d seen it in the 1960s
    • Star Trek

J. Michael Straczynski

Straczynski created Babylon 5. This was the first non-Star Trek science fiction show that I loved. He created a 5-year plan for the storyline ahead of time, which was unprecedented. Crusade was a spinoff of Babylon 5 — it wasn’t as successful but that was because of the network. His other show Jeremiah lasted 2 seasons, and was very good. He has since moved on to movies, including the brilliant Changeling. He returned to TV along with the Wachowskis with Sense8, which I’m interested in watching. Straczynski has also written books and comics, including an amazing run on The Amazing Spider-Man. He’s working on the upcoming TV show Red Mars.

  • Masterpiece
    • Babylon 5
  • Great TV show
    • Jeremiah
  • Good TV show
    • Crusade

Joss Whedon

Whedon’s movie version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer didn’t quite turn out as he intended. But he later turned it into a brilliant TV show, as well as the spinoff Angel. I’m still reading the comics that take place in this universe. Whedon’s other shows were short-lived but brilliant: Firefly and Dollhouse. He’s written comics, and written and directed movies — including Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, Much Ado About Nothing, and The Avengers. He can probably do whatever he wants now — the thing I’d most like to see is a sequel to Serenity. The latest show he’s involved with is the great Agents of SHIELD. He had a few projects that didn’t pan out, including a Wonder Woman movie that probably would have been superb.

  • Masterpieces
    • Angel
    • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
    • Firefly
  • Great TV shows
    • Agents of SHIELD
    • Dollhouse

This entry was posted on Thursday, January 19th, 2017 at 2:13 pm and is filed under My thoughts. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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