An Ascension Community
Syfy (ended 2014)


Forget sharknados and whatever creature Tara Reid is, because Syfy is finally getting back to sci-fi basics with two of its upcoming projects, the space drama Ascension and the time-traveling 12 MonkeysAscension was ordered as a six-episode miniseries but could potentially run for multiple seasons, similar to the network's popular series Battlestar Galactica—and coincidentally starring BSG's Tricia Helfer. 12 Monkeys is a re-imagining of Terry Gilliam's 1995 film of the same name, about a man from the future who travels back to the present day to eradicate the source of a deadly plague that will eventually decimate the human race. 

Ascension, which is set to premiere Monday, November 24, was inspired by the real-life Project Orion that existed under President John F. Kennedy. The series follows a covert space mission that began in 1963 when hundreds of men, women, and children embarked on a century-long voyage to populate a new world known as Proxima. When the travelers are nearly 50 years into their journey and approaching the point of no return, the murder of a young woman aboard their starship—the first homicide since their departure—causes them to question the true nature of their mission. 

"The murder is the starting of the unraveling," Ascension's executive producer, Phil Levens, told reporters at the Television Critics Association summer press tour on Monday. Because the series is set on a ship that is self-contained and self-sustained, the people have evolved and developed differently than they would have if they'd remained on Earth. Not only is the technology different, but they think differently, too. "Their morals and the values that they're dealing with are still from the '60s," explained series star Tricia Helfer, who plays Viondra Denniger, the wife of the ship's captain.

Helfer noted that she's excited to return to Syfy, the network where she got her start in acting. "I started my career with Battlestar Galactica. I got lucky for my first job to be on something so character-driven, something that made people think. I was fascinated by the idea [of Ascension]. It's interesting to have this alternate story, a Plan B for reality."

The society on the ship is very hierarchical and uses genetic linking—arranged marriages, basically—to sustain human life (three generations will be be born during the trip to Proxima). Helfer's character Viondra started out on the lower decks but rose through the ranks, as did her husband, who's portrayed by Brian Van Holt. "They're a power couple," Helfer said. "Viondra will do anything to stay in power."

Van Holt described his character as a bit of a go-getter himself: "He's a very ambitious character who sought out a leadership role, which was presented to him after an act of heroism on the ship."  


Also joining Syfy's lineup is 12 Monkeys, which is slated for a January debut and stars Nikita alums Aaron Stanford and Noah Bean, as well as Amanda Schull (Suits) and Kirk Acevedo (Fringe). But the series, which hails from former Nikita story editors Terry Matales and Travis Fickett, as well as executive producers Richard Suckle and Natalie Chaidez, is not looking to mimic the movie from which it draws its name and premise. “We were all big fans of the original film and had a deep love and respect for the material," said Matales. "We didn’t want to just redo what the movie does.”

One way the TV series will differ is that there won't be any ambiguity about whether Stanford's Cole is actually from the future or just a little bit crazy. "He is a time-traveler," said Fickett. But that doesn't rule out the latter option, of course, as Ficket also noted that "we're not saying he's not an insane person [too]." Matales went on to call the character an antihero, because "[Cole's] not out to save 7 billion people, he's out to save himself."

The creative team hopes to create a series that's more grounded than the film, yet with a bit of a thriller element, as it will toy with the consequences of time travel. "Just because you can change the future doesn't necessarily mean you should," Matales said. 

12 Monkeys currently has a 13-episode order. Unfortunately, if you were hoping to catch a sneak peak at Comic-Con in a couple weeks, you're in for a bit of disappointment. The producers opted not to attend the four-day convention because it coincides with filming and they'd rather spend that time working on the show. Thanks a lot, jerks!


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 12/17/2014

Season 1 : Episode 3

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If Syfy really wants to go back to its roots, they need to change the name back to SciFi. Then they need to get rid of WWE, and add more scripted science fiction shows like Stargate and Eureka. It's now to the point that I currently watch only one show at time (Helix and now Dominion) on a channel that I used to practical live on.
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12 Monkeys has great potential for a TV show IMO.
Ascension sounds good too.

"Their morals and the values that they're dealing with are still from the '60s,"

Sounds good, but then "arranged marriages" came and I got doubts... Could be interesting though.

Syfy always have some good shows. Keep 'em coming!
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Two interesting sounding shows with some actors I have previously liked, I will give them a chance.They have got a new zombie series coming out soon too. SyFy is getting back to its name (well at least it old name.)
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Also, Sci-Fi, Alphas please, seriously, that is a show up your ally that was lookin good.
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It's a wait and see for me. Syfy has broken my heart too many times.
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Stupid Syfy...
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pretty much word for word what I was thinking.
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Ascension sounds good....., SyFy had better shows back when they were the Sci-Fi Channel. I hope they do start going back to their roots.
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I will always take a look since I am a sci-fi junkie... :-P
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ascension sounds like this http://www.tv.com/shows/virtuality/ with out the 'vr' and in a retro style...


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It seems any SyFy produced show gets 3 seasons at best before they decide not enough people (18 to 49 year olds?) are watching to justify the cost and then cancel it regardless of quality, if any to begin with. If you like their shows, enjoy them while you can, but don't complain when they go off the air.
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Ascension sounds exciting and hopefully will be good and made into a actual series like BSG. I was not interested in 12 monkeys till I read it stars the awesome Aaron Stanford. I am glad he got to be a main lead plus the show has the same story editors (which means writers, right?) as Nikita so it should be good. Nikita had good stories.

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Nice to see people from Nikita doing well, it was one of my favourites too.
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Good, maybe we can get back to Sci-Fi and not WWF every night. It is said Networks are winning fewer viewers in the over hyped 18-to-49. It might be this is the wrong audience, firstly since they don’t have money to buy the products advertised, and increasingly – gasp — they live at home in mommy’s basement., Secondly they are more into the internet and Xbox
It fascinates me that with all these channels I find there is nothing to watch on some nights.


I am over 50, I like Science Fiction, Good Sci-Fi, and action stories. Too many good concept shows are ruined by the feminists. Right from the start we get the little black girl with a sword, or some skinny arms and itti bitti titties girl beating up men. We see it on the shows where the social engineering writers and producers have this formula where the woman is portrayed as the lead action hero. Men on most shows are demoted to nitwits or the woman takes the lead as the men cower and act helpless in the background. You don't need to make a strong woman character by belittling or demeaning men.
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They seem to think that a strong woman can only be one that has superhuman strength to beat up men twice her size. I don't watch those shows. Stupid and insulting to women. Not everything comes down to a physical fight.
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You're an idiot.
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Good concept shows ruined by the feminists?
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Yep, they are going to make a black female Captain America. Probebly gay too.
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If you mention Kirk Acevedo please reference his first and most awesome role from many of our collective memory - long before 'Fringe' - he was 'Miguel Alvarez' the inmate who escaped (for a while) from The Oswald State Penitentiary. (He stole Busmalis's escape route.) 'OZ' STILL RULES!

Also, I'll follow 'Number Six' anywhere.
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I really hate the SyFy channel, but I'm definitely on board for Ascension, and most likely 12 Monkeys. SyFy is just so bad about cancelling good shows, I hate to let myself get into anything on their channel.
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Ascension sounds a little bit like Defying Gravity. If it´s somehow close to it, I´m more than happy to watch! :)
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Defying Gravity was awesome. I loved that show - I still can't believe they cancelled it :(
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I was crushed when they cancelled Defying Gravity. I feel like it was a good sci fi show that was killed when it was marketed as Grey's Anatomy in space
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I've lost all faith in Siffy, so it'll take a great amount of critical success with these to get my attention on the NEXT shows they put out.
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When the travelers are nearly 50 years into their journey and approaching the point of no return, the murder of a young woman aboard their starship—the first homicide since their departure—causes them to question the true nature of their mission.

If they wanted to make scifi, it should start with them actually finding Proxima or getting way off course or something like that. This story rather seems like a good way to destroy a good setting and premise by making the story something that does not have to take place in a scifi setting at all. Just as they did with seasons one of Stargate Universe or whatever it was called. They also had the perfect setting and perfect premise, and ruined it by having an extremely crappy story line about people sdamn feelings and relationships and whatever. A story that could just as well have taken place on earth, on a boat, a train or the "paradise hotel" or "big brother" house.

Sure, this can still be good but from those lines i get bad vibes. The other show might also be good, but, remake? Really? Re-use only good ideas, not whole shows. Farscape, Star Trek Voyager, and Stargate Universe is all built the good (and creatively unlimited) idea of getting lost far away from home. Re-use good ideas like that. Ideas that have almost endless potential. But do not copy whole shows or films.
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".... ruined it by having an extremely crappy story line about people sdamn feelings and relationships and whatever."

That's called character building, and most people find that it's an asset.
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I felt SGU was only that, thus wasted the whole setting and premise on a story that did not need to take place in space to be told. Like if some Jane Austen book was filmed but the location was the moon instead of England while everything else the same. Now, i like Jane Austen but it would not add anything to the story if it took place on the moon instead of England. But we all feel differently i guess. :)
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Ascension sounds a bit like the CW's the 100, not that that's a bad thing. Syfy better be really careful with 12 Monkeys, cause I love that movie/story.
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Then you better get prepared to be horribly disappointed, because THIS. IS. SIFFY!
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i hope the creative team saw from dusk til dawn tv series which was very good and expanded on the movie. i hope 12 monkeys does that, tells the main story at the same time expanding the story.
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I agree, Fargo was another Movie-to-TV adaptation that was handled excellently. They need to capture the spirit of the movie instead of trying to do a scene-by-scene copy of it.
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Not that either of those things sound bad. But the idea that Helix, Dominion etc are taking SyFy back to it's glory days I don't like. In my opinion 2006-2009 about is where they had their best balance. They had Battlestar Galactica, Eureka, Warehouse 13, Stargate Atlantis, Sanctuary etc. It was more of a line up where you did not have to be a hardcore sci fi or horror junkie to enjoy it. I will admit with the cancelling of Eureka and Warehouse 13 and the preponderance of reality series the network hasn't been the best recently. But they would be wise to have a few more shows like Stargate that go back to the roots of being sci fi but with a little softer side and not just trying to gross people out for the sake of grossing them out.
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I've known about the 12 Monkeys project for awhile now, but I'm glad for the new info. I'm looking forward to it.

Still mad at Syfy for cancelling Alphas.
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Why remake 12 monkeys? the original is wierdly wacky and stands the test of time. Is there nothing original anymore, it's just remake after remake and variations on a theme {sigh}
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In a lot of cases it actually goes the other way around. The Hollywood big cheeses talk about an idea they had, like say... Fighting insects in space.
Then eventually someone goes and says "okay, find me an existing IP that has something similar so we can likely increase the audience" - and voila you get Starship Troopers - even though the movie has practically nothing to do with source material.

Truth is, most of these so called "remakes" have very little to do with the source material.

Teen Wolf, Under the Dome, Vampire Diaries just off the top of my head. Heck, the last one is so hilarious in that they got the rights for the books and ripped it from the original author so that the books will fit the show instead of the other way around.

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It's probably fear more than anything... fear of making a mistake and wasting the money.

Try out a brand new story or intellectual property, and maybe the execs or focus groups were completely wrong. Maybe it WASN'T a good idea to make a show about a talking mutant frog that likes to fly in outer space and fight cyborgs. Even IF the production values were good.

But... they know that a decent population of people like STORY-X with characters Y and Z. So... then it's just a matter of not screwing up the production and ensure the writing keeps a similar feel.
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The typical phrase of a bad developer team "The creative team hopes to create a series that's more grounded than the film...". "More grounded" scifi tv-shows always...always fail.
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I am worried about 12 Monkeys. And well I also believe nothing can top Battlestar Galactica in its class (considering SyFy) so I hope Tricia Helfer's image stays the way it has been since Battlestar.

And I hope to be wrong and that we get good mature and entertaining shows.
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I was down on Syfy, for a long time. I stopped watching for a while, after their treatment of: Stargate Atlantis, Caprica, and Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome. I didn't go back, until Helix, and i picked up Continuum.

But i have to say, that i'm optimistic about them lately. I'm impressed with their new development. I look forward to 12 Monkeys, Ascension, The Expanse, and Z Nation. They bought the US rights to Killjoys. Add that Continuum, Helix, Dominion, Defiance, and Bitten; and it has potentially the most shows, i watch from any network, including FX.

Plus they have : Letter 44 (another space opera, that makes 4!), Magicians, Pax Romana, Robert Kirkman's Clone, and Frank Miller's Ronin in development.
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Yes, that looks like a pretty solid line up.
Even "ship shows" are making a come back.
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I hope the 'returns to its roots' is true. I love everything Science Fiction but lately my SF taste is on starvation mode. Both shows look interesting although I like more the cast of 12 Monkeys.
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Both projects sound good, maybe I can begin the slow process to not hating SyFy anymore.

I hope the 12 Monkeys show also has the protagonist travelling to the future, like in the original La Jetee.
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I'm looking forward to Ascension (hopefully Tricia Helfer will return this time for good to tv).

However, Syfy should keep its filthy, sticky tentacles away from 12 Monkeys. They're already changing things and soon it will be new The Last Ship...
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Wait, wasn't Hefler on TV this whole time? I know she's been awhile on Burn Notice and did a couple of other things. Not to mention that pilot on the fairy tale police force (forgot its name)
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That's why I wrote "this time for good" - her last show "Killer Women" was cancelled.
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Oh, gotcha ;)
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Sci-Fi Channel "return to its roots"? Old Lorne Greene Battlestar Galactica and Kolchak: The Night Stalker reruns? Or that caustic sludge known as "Sci-Fi Channel Original Movie"? I would much prefer they stick with their recent "it's so crazy, it just might work" strategy of producing somewhat watchable and entertaining series like Helix.
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Hey, there's nothing wrong with old Kolchak: The Night Stalker reruns.

David Chase and Robert Zemeckis had to start their careers somewhere...
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No, of course not (I liked both of those series), but that's undeniably the channel's roots.
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FireFly Series 2. The only way to restore SyFy's credibility. That and a return to non-retarded spelling - i.e. "SciFi"
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They would call it "FyrFly" and it would star an all-new, 20-somethings cast.
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Didn't someone try to bring 12 Monkeys to a series a few years back? Or I'm plucking that memory from my butt? :)
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'Syfy' +' returns to it's roots' in the same sentence! Yeah,I'll believe it when I see it. Oh,look what's on,it's 12 Monkeys and what's that......oh,everyone is being attacked by.......... Sharknados!!!!LOL ;p But seriously,I hope they start offering thought-provoking sci-fi series again.
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Loving the cast lineup for 12 Monkeys! Lets just hope Kirk Acevedo sticks with it instead of jumping onto every sinking ship and limited acting opportunity that comes his way.

Ascension sounds fairly bland, but hey I'll give it a chance, 6 episodes doesn't give them too much time to screw up.
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The original 12 Monkeys is absolute perfection. One of my top 10 all time favorites and Gilliam at his best. No idea why it is being redone.
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Ironic that 12 Monkeys was a remake of the French film La Jetee, that imo was much better (and very different). La Jetee included some stuff that didn't happen in 12 Monkeys. I really hope the writers are aware of the actual source of the material and draw from it.
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What scares me is that they'd completely muck up the view of time travel Gilliam had in the movie. Assuming Bruce was actually a time-traveler, there was never any attempt to *alter* history. He was only there to bring back something that could save the present (our future). While I am looking forward to the show, I'm quite certain they'll end up having the "anti-hero" change the past (our present), and that's gonna piss me off.
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But they do change the past... isn't that the whole point of the last scene where the red head sits next to the virus guy?
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Cole (Bruce Willis) discovered that Dr. Peters was the one that spread the virus, but get the information necessary to counter it. Cole tried to alter the past by shooting Dr. Peters in the airport, but failed because, as he had been saying all along, "This already happened." The redhead was sent as followup to discover exactly what the virus was and how they could create an anti-virus for it in their present/our future.
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I always assumed the ending meant that she stopped him and they changed the past.
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For exactly the reason you said. It's great. Great things get remade all the time. It's not nearly as bad as most people make it out to be. Sometimes the remakes even surpass their predecessors.
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Good point. Although, exactly the thing that makes 12 Monkeys great is the thing they're taking out. Without the question of is this true or is he crazy, 12 Monkeys is just another plague flick.
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