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Nightflyer's showrunner explains why George Martin Martin's massive worlds are perfect for television

This evening, the Syfy Channel launches its latest major science fiction show: Nightflyers based on a story from Game of…

This evening, the Syfy Channel launches its latest major science fiction show: Nightflyers based on a story from Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin. The series is a major issue for viewers: Does humanity deserve to be afraid?

The story is adapted from a novel originally published in the 1980’s science fiction magazine Largest science facts and fiction long before Martin was a household name. He wrote it to disprove a critical statement he read, claiming that science fiction and horror were opposites, and could not be mashed together. “As a lifelong fan of both, I hit myself like nonsense, so I decided to prove wrong by mixing the two genres together. Prepared quite well for me,” he wrote on his LiveJournal in 201


Nightflyers follows a scientific expedition aimed at capturing a mysterious spacecraft from a race called volcry, passing through the galactic area. Nine researchers board a ship, the title Nightflyer and quick to do their observations. They encounter some problems – it turns out that renting a cheap ship has some pitfalls – because they discover that Nightflyer has cores and malicious events that make a scientific expedition a terrifying experience.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Martin followed his predecessor by developing his own future story, a consistent world in which he could release stories. His first novel, Dying of the Light, was followed by a number of other stories made in this distant future. Syfys Nightflyers is not the first time this world has appeared on the screen either: the story was made into a low budget movie in the 1980s, while another novel Sandkings, became a two part External Borders episode in the mid 1990s.

Serialist Jeff Buhler explains that to bring the show to Syfy, the creative team was necessarily making some changes to the original story. “One of the major changes from the novel that we tackled to make the TV series was to roll back the timeline that existed in the Millennium Universe.” The history of Martin lies centuries far forward after humanity colonized the galaxy. Along the way, humanity came into contact with many other aliens and was wrapped inside two hostile alien attacks. For the show, Buhler declared that they would go back to the point where humanity first came into contact with foreigners.

“We’ve seen many first contact stories, and they usually center on a strange species that attacks the Earth for resources, or something in that direction,” Buhler says. “I wanted to tell a kind of twist on that story.” He also wanted to make the story more relevant to modern audiences, while using it as a way to thumb “the door is open to what’s in our galaxy”.

Image: Analog Science Fiction / Science Fact

This mashup of science fiction and horror appealed to Buhler, but he also pointed to the main characters of history as a drawing: “When you dug into history, [Martin] created a whole world with incredible characters. “He had originally developed the history of movies, but ended up cutting more and more relevant information with each draft. “It was just too many ideas, too many ideas, for many things that felt like rich opportunities.” Finally, he decided to show more suitable for television.

Martin’s Nightflyers and others Thousands of Worlds tell the story of the current streaming environment. Seer, says Buhler, “begins to ask stories that have more complexity and less defined boundaries. You do not necessarily need a story and then follow-up and tell everything in a linear way. People become much more sophisticated. They like to binge on content.” He notes that Martin’s approach to creating large, boundless worlds is very appealing to the fans.

And he wants to lean into the style of Nightflyers . While the exhibition is set to a close modern era, “at the end of the first season, we have very clearly taken over the idea that we are not alone and there are things we can not explain or understand as people living with us in this universe. I love the idea that it is a big world and universe and we can take the time to get there. “

Buhler has bigger plans for Nightflyers if it would be renewed for a second season. “When I hit Nightflyers I took a journey that included more than one season. The novel describes essentially where the first season goes and leaves us in a place of total mystery.” He says that when he talked to Martin about The series was his first question “Where do you go after this?” But Martin never imagined that the story continued. By the end of the season, Buhler says: “We have some opportunities to dig a little deeper into this world.” While the initial episodes focus on the immediate story, “does not mean we would not have the potential to open up other worlds that exist in the universe of the world of thousands.”

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