Archive for the ‘Dark Matter’ Category

As promised in yesterday’s blog entry, here are your choices for the Episode 304 titles.  Select one…


Do you notice a, uh, recurring theme?

Vote!  Polls close in 24 hours!

I’ve started compiling my Best of 2016 lists in preparation for the the third annual Rogue Star Awards.  Over the course of the next week or so, I’ll offer up my favorites in the following genre categories:

Best Short Story (31 shortlisted)

Best Novelette (7 shortlisted)

Best Novel (16 shortlisted)

Best Comic Book (13 shortlisted)

*Best Horror Film (contenders still under review)  *denotes a new category this year


Big day for Bubba.  This morning, he was the opening act in our family trip to the vet.  Dr. Batruch at the Front Street Animal Clinic is truly amazing and took us through the recent test results, our options, and the pros and cons of the Palladia treatment we’d been considering.  Following the visit, we decided to proceed with the Palladia and carefully monitor our boy.  We’ve also made an appointment to visit a homeopathic vet.


Suji rode shotgun on this one.  She was mainly there for moral support.


We swung by the bank today so I could pick up my replacement VISA card after the last one was compromised (No, I did NOT use my card to try to purchase gas in Phoenix the other day).  I’m a creature of habit, often frequenting the same restaurants and retailers, so when something like this happens, I tend to zero in on the out-of-the-norm places I recently used my card – and come up with two possibilities: a local restaurant and a pay-parking machine at a local lot.  My suspicions lean toward the lot.  I’m almost tempted to use another card to test my theory.


Apparently, Bubba’s life expectancy is 2-3 months but, aside from his hacking old man’s cough, you wouldn’t even know he’s sick.  He walked a good ten blocks today, his appetite is healthy, and he seems in great spirits.


Bubba’s Bucket List begins and ends with food.  Today, we took him to a place he’s been wanting to try for months – Bang Bang Ice Cream – where he shared some purple yam ice cream and a waffle cone with Akemi.  I had a toasted hazelnut ice cream and chocolate chip cookie sandwich.  That was some fine ice cream.

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My third and final batch of hot sauce (habanero, shallots, garlic, salt, pepper, smoked Chilean merken pepper, organic apple puree, apple cider, honey, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar) is a lip-smacking (in both senses of the word) masterpiece.  It’s a scorcher…but delicious as well.  A true culinary capsicum achievement.  I don’t know whether to eat it by the spoonful or smear into the eyes of my enemy.  It’s THAT good!


Today, I had lunch with Dark Matter Episode 305 director (and Bitten Executive Producer) J.B. Sugar, a guy who’s as gracious and good-hearted as he is talented. It was a sit-down to review his experience on the show which, I’m happy to report, was nothing but great.  Like his episode, a manic adventure chock full of action, humor, bittersweet character moments, and the Android’s most bizarre undercover guise yet!

On our way, we happened across this familiar fellow adorning some sidewalk art in support of the local Canadian film scene…


Why, yes, it’s none other than Cowboy Bruce McDonald, indie film auteur and occasional Dark Matter (Episode 107, 202, 206, 302, and 312 so far!) director.


Speaking of the Android – she is also enjoying a well-deserved break from all the shipboard mayhem.  Pictured above in relaxed mode.

Hey, who feels like voting for another episode title?

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photo courtesy of Roger Cross

photo courtesy of Roger Cross

And that’s a wrap on Dark Matter Season 3 Production Phase II.  The third and final phase commences a little over a week from now.  Until then, it’ll be R&R&R (Rest and Relaxation and Reading) for me.


Unfortunately, not everyone made it to the hiatus.  But those that did have earned a well-deserved break from 7:30 a.m. crew calls and 7:30 p.m. wraps.


A rare shot of the bridge from fake space.  This is usually where the actors kick back between scenes.

(Security feed playback courtesy of 1st Assistant Art Director Sumeet Vats and 2nd Assistant Art Director Victor Mare)

Hey, do me a favor and keep an eye on The Raza nest cam while we’re away!

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“It’s like when you make ganache and you put it in the fridge and when you take it out it’s an hour too early and it’s not yet set.  That’s what it was like.”

Akemi describing Bubba’s stool sample this morning.


Today, we took Bubba a very relaxed Bubba (he’s already on vacation!) to see his oncologist.  This was the result of our meeting –


In a nutshell, no to chemo but yes to targeted therapy which is comprised of a single pill (Palladia, which sounds like a great scifi world) given every second day. In a perfect world, it will target the tumors in Bubba’s lung and not the person charged with  administering said pill since the instructions explicitly caution anyone handling it to wear gloves while doing so!  We’ll alternate the Palladia with Prednisone, an anti-inflammatory.  I’m also going to look into a few promising-looking home therapy treatments.


Suji and Bubba.  They’re like an old married couple.


Despite her recent injury, even Lulu gets in on the action.


Meanwhile, on Dark Matter, it was business as usual in the Raza underbelly.

Finally, presenting Dark Matter’s diabolical and deadly Misaki Han like you’ve never seen her before…

Ellen Wong Flips Out:

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“Is your dog relaxing or in distress?”asked the receptionist, prompting Akemi and I to swing a look over to the shiba inu sprawled out on the floor by a row of seats at the back.

“Relaxing,”replied her owner.  “She hasn’t eaten in five days.”

Five days?!!!  If any of my dogs skipped a single meal, it would be enough to set off the alarm bells that would send me off to the vet.

“Oncology triage to the front, please,”we heard the receptionist call over the P.A.

It was 9:45 a.m. and we were at the clinic, taking advantage of a late cancellation to get Bubba seen.  His cough, and the outlook, were looking progressively worse.  He’d had blood work done the previous night and this ultrasound would presumably confirm the worst.

And, this afternoon, when the results came in, they did.  The biopsy all but confirmed the cancer diagnosis and its advancement, between the results of the ultrasound and the x-rays taken the other day, suggested it was aggressive.  The doctor prescribed some cough suppressants to make Bubba more comfortable. Tomorrow, we go in to see an oncologist to discuss our options.


I realize that fourteen and a half years is great for a pug and it’s almost two and a half years more than Maximus had, but about two years less than Jelly had.  Still, it’s hard and I had a great talk about this with Anthony Lemke this afternoon, all about family, relationships, and tough decisions.  Not sure how much time we’re going to have with the little guy, but we’re going to make the most of the time we have left.

Because of this morning’s appointment, my two awesome lieutenants were on set to cover for me as usual – Co-Executive Producer Ivon Bartok was on second unit, while Co-Executive Producer Lawren Bancroft-Wilson was on main.  I thank them for stepping up

Some Dark Matter-related goodies…


Emperor Ryo Ishida (Alex Mallari Jr.) and his man Ash (Michael Reventar) – photo c/o Michael Reventar.


Finish him! 

Security drone c/o VFX Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson (concept design by Henry Fong, modelling by Ethereal Assets, shots by CVD VFX)

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Let’s celebrate Valentine’s Day (except in Pakistan where it’s apparently been outlawed) with a brand new episode title!  Here are the results of yesterday’s fan poll:


Wow.  This one wasn’t even close.  I honestly thought “This Galaxy’s Most Notorious” would have put in a better showing, but what do I know?  That’s why I just write and produce the episodes and leave the naming to those more qualified.


The “helmet” for Episode 307 is a glorious thing.  Gorgeous workmanship by On Set Key Props Lisa Amaral Wright.


A few more pods for your consideration c/o Set Designer Karl Crosby.


If and when I get that new military SF series off the ground, I’ve already reserved Karl’s seat on the hero destroyer.


A costume design sketch from, appropriately enough, Costume Designer Noreen Landry.


Director (and Dark Matter Stunt Coordinator) John Stead calling the shots.


And ordering our the new crew (?!).


Incoming transmission.  But who’s calling?  Commander Nieman, I presume?  (Playback still c/o 1st Assistant Art Director Sumeet Vats).


Our apartment is now a veterinary clinic.  Poor Lulu, laid up by a paw injury enjoys some R&R.

This is poor Bubba and his hacking old man’s cough.  Based on the x-rays, the early prognosis isn’t good, but we’ll learn more after tomorrow’s ultrasound.


Despite this, he seems happy during the day and his appetite is good.  This afternoon, he hit the park with doggy uber (aka Akemi).

Tonight, Akemi and I celebrate Valentine’s Day by taking Bubba for some blood tests, eating leftover pork, and watching Gail Harvey’s director’s cut of Episode 306!  Pretty romantic.

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The polls are open once again.  Cast your vote for your preferred Episode 303 title:

Then enjoy these gorgeous pod designs, c/o phenomenal Set Designer Karl Crosby…





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