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Doorways (1993)

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 11:54 am    Post subject: Doorways (1993) Reply with quote

Doorways, April 21,1993 was a sci~fi TV movie that also served as a pilot.

Created by George R.R.Martin the premise for the potential TV series was about parallel Earths.

Cat, a mysterious woman suddenly appears on a freeway in the midst of traffic. She fires her unique looking weapon at an oncoming truck which then explodes. She is wounded by flying shrapnel & is taken into a hospital.

Treated by Dr. Thomas Mason who is most curious about her. F.B.I. agents sweep in and take Cat from the hospital and an outraged Dr. Mason.

F.B.I. agents take an interest in Cat by holding her prisoner at a secure facility where they have scientists examine her hand weapon. A device that is far advanced from our current technology.

They also are studying Cat's bio-organic bracelet.

Getting nowhere, the agents recruit Dr. Mason to help get answers from the defiant & mistrusting & frightened Cat. Thomas is given Cat's strange bracelet to ask her what is its purpose?

Cat is able to convince Thomas that she is indeed not of his Earth but from another Earth in a different dimension. She was a slave there by a Dark Lord before she escaped & was able to journey to another Earth. The bracelet begins to glow which tells Cat that her former captors are nearby.

She is being pursued by the Dark Lord and his bounty hunters who arrive at the F.B.I. facility.

During the battle between the agents & the bounty hunters Cat is able to grab both her weapon & bracelet & flee with Thomas in a stolen auto.

Cat's bracelet displays a hologram which indicates when & where the next doorway will open to another Earth.

Cat & Thomas arrive at the designated location just as the bounty hunters & Dark Lord arrive to capture her. After a firefight Cat & Thomas are able to escape through the vortex to another Earth.

Cat & Thomas appear on a world where all the oil has been consumed by genetically engineered creatures. Their purpose was to clean up an oil spill but they raged out of control,bred,and devoured all the oil.

This world has fallen into a savage world where people prey upon one another.

As a big fan of Sliders which was also a sci~fi TV show involving traveling to other Earths, I would have enjoyed this similar themed series.

Journeying to alternate Earths offers the same scope of possible stories as TV shows like Star Trek. On ST a brand new world had different and unknown civilizations that offered a new adventure for the star ship crew.

The same would apply to the various and unknown Earths on Doorways. These Earths developed differently and writers could take these Earths in any direction they could imagine.

The show could cover a plethora of issues & do so in various manners. The new Earths could range from tragic to comedic with their cultures. Humor, horror, sci~fi technology, pure adventure, could all be adapted for such a premise and keep it interesting and fresh.

ABC sadly did not pick up this compelling pilot and instead (and unfortunately) decide to go with Lois & Clark: The Adventures of Superman for their schedule that year.

I am hoping and praying that with Martin's enormous hit with his Game of Thrones TV show on HBO that interest in his Doorways could awaken & the concept be given another opportunity for television.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


Thanks, Pow! This unsold pilot sounds cool! Cool

YouTube has a video of the movie, but it's one of those versions with the picture darkened way down, with a slightly brighter spot in the middle. Rolling Eyes

But they do have a short video of the opening scenes with a good picture (even though it's stretched horizontally to fill the screen, dammit . . . ), so at least we can enjoy the well-done promo from the beginning of the movie. Very Happy

____________ George R R Martin's DOORWAYS


Listen carefully to what the narrator says about the alternate universes.

Perhaps this is not the only world. Perhaps for every world where the coin came up heads, there's another where it came up tails.

~ A world where Hitler won the second world war.

~ A world where Indian "Columbus" discover Europe in three tiny sailing ships.

~ A world where John Kennedy assassinated President Lee Harvey Oswald.

~ A world where Elvis is still sing . . . and Marilyn lived on to win a dozen Oscars!

~ A world where dinosaurs still rule the earth, and a world where magic works — and physic's won't!

~ A world where the Dodgers never left Brooklyn.

Worlds upon worlds, universe upon universe, lying as near to each other as pages in a book, yet each different, each telling its own story. An infinite number of worlds, all dimly dreaming of one another.

And between them . . . perhaps there are . . . Doorways!

Some of the ideas are very different from the standard Sliders concepts, like an Earth where Germany got the atomic bomb first. I mean, who'd have ever thought to suggest a world that reversed the roles of Kennedy and Oswald, or the Native Americans and the crews of Columbus' ships! Shocked

Such concepts don't just suggest a small change in History which would lead to large consequences, like the German A-bomb. With differences like these we'd have to consider changes that went far back into history.

The dinosaur world idea, for example, would mean the asteroid missed Earth, and evolution ended up causing multiple sentient species on Earth . . . some of which are reptilian! Shocked

The Kennedy / Oswald concept would mean a drastically different history for both the entire Kennedy family and Oswald's ancestors, before we even got to the point where John shoots Lee, instead of vice shooting versa! Confused

My favorite idea is the one about the Native Americans discovering Europe. That one means the Indians developed a more advanced civilization than the one which occurred on this Earth. They actually became a sea-going culture who traveled by ships back and forth between the East and West coasts of North and South America.

But wait, the Aztecs and the Incas might well have done that eventually if the Spaniards hadn't destroyed them after they arrived in search of gold!

But what if those early American cultures had developed large sailing ships and begun to trade, cooperate, and advance long before the Spanish arrived? In that universe, they might have sent an expedition to the east well before Columbus set out towards the west!

With fleets of ships like those that were common in Europe during the Age of Discovery, starting in the 15th century —

— the united Native American cultures would have flourished along the expansize coastlines of both North and South America. Rather than battling with each other (which they frequently did), a robust trade would have made peace more profitable. The diverse cultures would have mixed and "standardized" to some degree, easing cultural conflicts.

Communications between the regions would have occurred more rapidly, making localized governments easier to manage.

So, where am I going with this?

If the Native America cultures were united, prosperous, and as technologically advanced as the Europeans before Columbus discovered the New World, history would be VERY different if they discovered Europe — instead of the other way 'round.

In that universe, the Native American's would be much less superstitious and easily deceived by the greedy Europeans. A hundred-plus years of travel, trade, and cultural exchange throughout the two American continents would have prepared them just as well as the Europeans for the culture shock which resulted.

And the Native Americans would have plenty of resources to trade with the Europeans . . . including an abundance of something highly valued in Europe.


Yes, indeed, I can imagine a very different world history if the Native American's had developed a thriving sea-going civilization before the Europeans even showed up.

Interesting idea, eh? Very Happy

Is there no man on Earth who has the wisdom and innocence of a child?
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

George Martin talked a little about it at convention. He said it fell apart during discussions with ABC. They wanted to do shows about truly different civilizations. ABC wanted to do shows like, it's just like here but the men wear dresses. They just couldn't agree.

I haven't seen the pilot, but supposedly, there are some suspicious resemblances to this show in "Sliders".

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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Krel wrote:
ABC wanted to do shows like, it's just like here but the men wear dresses. They just couldn't agree.

Wow, that would be wild! Men wearing dresses! And to make it REALLY crazy, the men wouldn't be real MEN . . . they'd secretly be . . . women! Shocked

(Wait, that brings everything right back to normal! I did a 360° instead of a 180° . . . . )
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2019 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

George R.R.Martin first pitched "Doorways" in 1991. The movie/pilot was filmed in 1992.

"Sliders"debuted on March 22,1995 & ran to February 04,2000 for 5 seasons & 88-episodes.

I'm a fan of "Sliders." Did the creators of the show,Robert K.Weiss & Tracy Torme,borrow some of Martin's concepts from "Doorways?" Who knows for certain?

Film and television does have a history of taking material from other sources and adapting it for their own productions without consulting the originators.

Gene Roddenberry said that CBS had him in for an interview regarding his idea for a science~fiction TV show called "Star Trek.'' The network said later they weren't interested in his series.
GR said that it later dawned on him that CBS was never really interested in doing Gene's show at all. They just wanted to hear about his concepts & story ideas so that they might later apply it to their sci~fi series "Lost In Space."
In other words Gene had been had.

Harlan Ellison successfully sued the producers of "The Terminator"because the idea was lifted from his sci~fi short story "Soldier"which was later done on The Outer Limits for an episode.

I always thought that creators for film or television projects would legally be sure that their ideas would make their projects untouchable by other producers.

I guess there are ways to get around that by some producers. Sometimes they get away with it,sometimes they are caught with their hand in the cookie jar.

I've no clue as to whether "Sliders"profited from "Doorways"in any manner.

Other than the premise of people journeying to alternate Earths,the shows were different enough to not be exact copycats.

As much as I enjoyed "Sliders"& the wonderful(original)cast,I found the "Doorways"concept stronger from the point of origin story.

On "Sliders"we have brilliant science student Quinn Mallory able to create a vortex to other worlds.
Quinn was actually investigating the force of gravity when he stumbled upon opening gateways to other Earths.
Some of science greatest discoveries are indeed accidental.

I always had to chuckle at this origin. A lone kid creates all of this without any other scientists or massive government or corporate funding.
Did it all by his lonesome in his basement.
Sounds more like a Disney movie.

"Doorways"had the technology for crossing over to other worlds come from just such a world.
It made much more sense to me.

Our Earth is incapable of scientifically creating such tech at this time...maybe ever.

But "Doorways"makes it feasible by not having such technology from our Earth. It comes from another Earth that one can make a case that it was able to be far in advance to our technology.

Sadly,both series never were able to fulfill thire respective promise.

"Doorways"because it wasn't picked up for series.
"Sliders"did have a number of strong episodes in its early season but suffered with the FOX Network's mishandling of the show.
FOX interfered enough that the show's creators walked away. Producers and writers came and went,and so did cast members.

All of those disruptions made for uneven seasons and episodes with variable quality.

It would be fantastic to see either "Doorways" or "Sliders"revived and their potential realized.
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