The 20 Sexiest Sci-Fi Babes Part 2

Originally posted 11/26/06 on Furinkan High School Kendo Club.

Be sure to read part one.

Max Guevera10. Max Guevera (Dark Angel 2000-02)

I could make all kinds of inappropriate jokes about a girl with spliced-in cat DNA, but I’ll restrain myself.

I don’t have to tell you that Max, aka Government Experiment X5-452, was hot – she was played by Jessica Alba, who takes hot to a new level not possible under the standard laws of physics. (Hey, I know! Let’s cast her as Invisible Girl!) But the show was kind of centered on Max being sexy, as well as kicking ass. Sort of like a futuristic, Seattle-based Abercrombie & Fitch ad.

Maybe Max would go out with me if I could score her some tryptophan. (Wait, the tryptophan prevents her from going into heat? Never mind.)

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Lana Lang9. Lana Lang (Smallville 2001-Present)

Yeah yeah, you’re with Clark, you’re not with Clark, you’re with him, you’re not, with, not, with, not, then you find out he’s Superboy, you die, come back, and Lex gets you pregnant. It’s too much drama, Lana. Especially since he’s just gonna move to Metropolis and fall for Lois.

You’ve got that Chinese-Dutch thing working for you, Lana. You’re gorgeous. Work it. Find yourself a real human male, not some Aryan übermensch from space.

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Rose Tyler8. Rose Tyler (Doctor Who 2005-07)

One day she’s a poor London shopgirl living in a council flat with her overbearing mother and shiftless boyfriend; the next, she’s a time-traveling Universe-saving inter-galactic superheroine (and a very, very Bad Wolf). How does a girl pull it off? By batting her beautiful eyes at any Time Lord who wanders by, of course.

Rose is smart, funny, vivacious, and in love with The Doctor, although the two of them never want to admit it. And it doesn’t hurt that she’s played by Billie Piper, the British Britney Spears.

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Theora Jones7. Theora Jones (Max Headroom 1985, 1987-88)

The United Kingdom takes four of the top twenty (and an honorary fifth for Trillian? She was British in the books).

As Edison Carter’s brainy and beautiful controller/sidekick/partner/love interest, Theora Jones was guardian angel to Network XXIII’s star reporter. If you were a geek in the 1980s, then Theora Jones was your ideal woman.

As Max Headroom would say, “I-I-I-I-I-I wouldn’t kick her out of bed for eating crack-crack-crackers!”

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Kaylee Frye6. Kaylee Frye (Firefly 2002, Serenity 2005)

“Goin’ on a year now I ain’t had nothin’ twixt my nethers weren’t run on batteries!” You know, Kaywinnit Lee, if’n that tree stump of a doctor ain’t gonna help y’all out in that respect, I reckon’ I might be willing ta fill in there.

Little Kaylee is as much the heart of Serenity as the ship’s photon-reaction drive. But the plucky, homily-spouting cutie is apparently a wildcat in the sack as well. She’s the one ship’s engineer with whom I’d like to get trapped on an island. Sorry, Scotty.

Kara 5. Kara Thrace (Battlestar Galactica 2003-Present)

They said a woman couldn’t be a cigar-chompin’, bar-brawlin’, whiskey-chuggin’ hotshot Viper pilot. Well, by “they” I mean Dirk Benedict. Dirk, you have officially had your ass handed to you.

In a stellar ensemble cast, Katee Sackhoff’s Kara Thrace is first among equals. It’s not just that she’s incredibly sexy – she shares screen time with Boomer, Six and Xena the Warrior Princess. Kara kicks ass and takes names in every way the original Starbuck did – PLUS she’s clever, bitter, loving, conflicted, and secretly paints pictures. She’s neither the stereotypical kick-ass superheroine, nor the stereotypical kick-ass superheroine who is secretly fragile. She’s the kick ass superheroine who is secretly fragile, but will never let that fragility take her down. Not ever.

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Seven of Nine4. Seven of Nine (Star Trek: Voyager 1995-2001)

Who would Annika Hansen have been if she hadn’t been assimilated by The Borg at the age of six? A big fat nobody, that’s who! Well, maybe not big and fat – on a typical Federation diet, she would have been at least Jeri Ryan-hot. But she would never have been Seven of Nine-hot! There’s nothing like a skin-tight gray jumpsuit and a metal eyebrow to turn a guy’s crank.

Sure, Seven was emotionally unavailable, but that was just because of her alien upbringing. Also, if your only choices were the “men” of Voyager, you might choose chastity as well. Yikes. No wonder she only hung out with the Doctor.

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Jean Grey3. Jean Grey (X-Men films 2000-2006)

First let’s get something straight. The real Jean Grey committed suicide in The Uncanny X-Men #137 in 1980. Every issue since then with “Jean Grey” in it is a PACK OF LIES.

That said, Famke Janssen’s Jean Grey in the X-Men films is its own, separate character, and that character is amazing. Call it the superheroine who is openly, obviously, heart-breakingly fragile. You just want to run over to her and wrap your arms around her, even if it means, a la Brett “Let’s destroy the franchise” Ratner, she’ll disperse you into millions of colored CGI chunklets. If there’s another X-Men movie, let’s hope this time they do bring Jean Grey back from the dead.

Oops, that was a spoiler. If you haven’t seen Last Stand, don’t read that last sentence.

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Sharon 2. Sharon Valeri (Battlestar Galactica 2003-Present)

Grace Park plays three characters on BSG.

There’s Athena, who the producers call Sharon and fans call Caprica-Boomer. She’s Helo’s wife, and mother of the Cylon Miracle Baby. She lives on Galactica.

Then there’s the one the producers call Boomer and fans call Galactica-Boomer. She was in love with the Chief, shot Adama, and teamed up with Caprica-Six to “save” humanity. Now she lives on a base star.

Finally, there’s Number 8, which is all the other thousands of Sharons, who always call Athena a traitor.

And I am in love with all of them. Even the ones that would kill me.

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Leeloo Dallas multi-pass!1. Leeloo (The Fifth Element 1997)

The perfect woman, the Supreme Being. That’s Milla Jovovich. No, sorry, I mean Leeloo, a.k.a. Leeloo Minai Lekatariba-Laminai-Tchaii Ekbat De Sebat, a.k.a. The Fifth Element.

Is it the orange dreads? The pale blue-green eyes? The perfect body? The Gaultier outfits? The adorable accent? The martial arts? The saving the Earth from the Ultimate Evil?

Out of all the science-fiction female ass-kicking secretly-fragile alien super-powered hotties, Leeloo is the ultimate. The perfect prototype. The geek’s ideal mate. Sigh. Too bad she doesn’t exist.

Be sure to read part one.

The Best and Worst Sci-Fi TV Show Openings (Part 1)

Photos and YouTube links updated 5/7/09.

I suffer from insomnia, and you benefit. Here are my picks for 10 Best and 10 Worst Opening Credits for Genre TV Shows.

By “genre,” I mean science fiction, fantasy, and horror. I only included shows made in English. I also decided to limit myself to those credits sequences I could find online – but this turned out not to be a problem. Hooray for YouTube! Hooray for copyright violations!

I was worried that I would subconsciously rate the title sequences not on their own merit, but based on the quality of the show overall. But I ended up with one of the worst shows of all time on the “Best” list, and one of the best on the “Worst” list. And they both have the same title!

Numerical order is approximate.

The 10 Best

BSG v.110. “Battlestar Galactica” (1979)

One of the most common mistakes made by sci-fi TV openings is the “expository monologue,” with which jittery television executives try to explain the show’s premise to viewers who don’t “get” sci-fi. As I researched this list, I learned how ubiquitous this problem is. Blah blah blah.

The original BSG features a long, long, loooong expository monologue. Yeah yeah, Toltecs and Mayans, got it. But the monologue is well written, and it’s read with tremendous gravity by the brilliant Patrick Macnee, who also voiced the Imperious Leader. The theme song kicks ass. And most importantly, the edited scenes (viewed through a circle — why?) really make the show look impressive. Too bad it sucked ass.

The Greatest American Hero9. “The Greatest American Hero” (1981-83)

It’s all about the theme song, baby. Mike Post’s theme song is goofy, poppy, cheesy, and almost but not entirely unrelated to the content of the show. And once you hear it, you will NEVER get it out of your head. This credits sequence is fun, funny, and engaging, and it has no expository monologue whatsoever. That UFO, left over from one of Steven Spielberg’s garage sales, is also very cool.

Watch for snakes!8. “Mystery Science Theater 3000” (1988-1999)

“Robot roll call!” We’re only concerned with the first two credit sequences here, the original Joel Hogdson credits and the first Mike Nelson opening. After Frank Conniff left, the show jumped the shark; and once it moved to the Sci Fi Channel, well, it’s just best not to think about it. Catchy song, goofy models and puppets, and the iconic “corridor crawl” a la “Get Smart.” And the theme song doubled as the expository monologue, which was a real time saver.

Make it so.7. “Star Trek: The Next Generation” (1987-1994)

What do you get when you cross the theme from “Star Trek The Motionless Picture” with the Shakespearean monologing skills of Patrick Stewart and a clever tribute the opening of the original “Star Trek?” Um, this opening, duh. By the way, the original “Star Trek” opening was pretty weak (“whoosh! whoosh!), although nowhere near bad enough to make the “worst” list. As far as I can tell, “Space… the final frontier…” invented the expository monologue.

Like Babylon 5, but slightly less sucky.6. “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” (1993-1999)

There was nothing special about the DS9 opening until season four, about the time the show started to not completely suck. The morose theme song got a boost from a bouncy backing track, and the CG guys added a bunch of business involving spaceships, little space-suited construction workers, and the Defiant flying into the wormhole. Suddenly, Deep Space 9 became a place you might conceivably care about. Then, in season seven, they screwed the whole thing up. This award goes to seasons 4-6 only. (Special props to DS9 for dropping the “Final Frontier” speech.)

What if the bad guys had salads for heads?5. “Star Trek: Voyager” (1995-2001)

Finally, the “Star Trek” credits sequence perfected. Great theme, excellent effects. Voyager actually interacts with its surroundings, which gives the sequence more reality.

Of course, in 9 out of 10 episodes, once the opening credits ended it was all downhill from there.

This show was saved near the end by exactly two things — marginally better writing, and Jeri Ryan.

So, what's the plunger for again?4. “Doctor Who” (1963-89, 1996, 2005-present)

First let’s discuss that theme song. When some hack isn’t ruining it by trying to “update” it, Ron Grainer’s “Doctor Who” theme is spacey, dramatic and memorable. Most of the “Doctor Who” credits sequences have been mediocre or terrible (see this – Jesus Christ, did that Zardozian giant floating head just wink at me? Exterminate! Exterminate!), but two really stand out. Coincidentally, they’re the openings for the two best Doctors to date. Tom Baker’s (1974-81) was modeled after previous openings, and included the dreaded “head shot.” But the music was great, the effects were cool, and you got to see the TARDIS fly around. In the Christopher Eccleston/David Tennant credits (2005 – present), the music was great, the effects were cool, and you got to see the TARDIS fly around. And no headshot! Plus, “Doctor Who” has never burdened us with an expository monologue. Can you imagine trying to explain “Doctor Who” in 30 seconds?

D-d-d-d-d-d duh duh duh duh duh.3. “The Six Million Dollar Man” (1974-78)

The awkwardly-titled series that made Lee Majors a star had opening credits as heart-pounding and dramatic as anything on TV. Steve Austin’s whole origins story was presented in under a minute – and they didn’t tell us, they showed us. Sure, Richard Anderson (no relation to Dean) talks through the credits, but he’s in the story, trying to convince his unnamed listener that blowing $6,000,000 in 1970s dollars to turn a crippled astronaut, and the astronaut’s girlfriend and dog, into cybernetic freaks isn’t a violation of the public trust. This opening is artistic and beautifully edited; and the cheesy theme song doesn’t cut in until the last 15 seconds.

SEPT!!! 13!!!! 1999!!!!!2. “Space: 1999” (1975-77)
This is a really interesting case. Some openings, like “The X-Files” or “Farscape,” were good, but not good enough to make it onto the “Best” list. (To answer your question – “The X-Files” had a great theme, but the visuals were dorky as hell. Oh look – Mulder is falling into an eye! Spooky!) Some were bad, but not terrible enough to make the “Worst” list (see “Lost In Space”). Only “Space: 1999” almost made it onto both lists.

The great: brilliant music, heart-pounding action, real drama, and no expository monologue. The terrible: it’s overwrought to the point of silliness – “SEPT 13!!!! 1999!!!!” In the end, the good beats out the bad. BTW, we are ignoring the hideous second season opening, just as we ignore the hideous second season.

(For more Gerry Anderson goodness, check out “Thunderbirds,” which just barely missed the Best list.)

Gorram Fox Network!1. “Firefly” (2002)

Wow. Just… wow. I’m not going to ruin it with words. If you don’t get it, nothing I say can help. Burn the land and boil the sea – you can’t take the sky from me.

(And Gina Torres gets to be the only actor on both the Best and Worst lists, unless you count Richard Hatch.)

Now read… the 10 Worst!