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joshing123
June 2nd, 2004, 11:25 AM
http://tv.zap2it.com/tveditorial/tve_main/1,1002,274|88478|1|,00.html

Watching the Web
(Tuesday, June 01 11:00 AM)
By Kate O'Hare
HOLLYWOOD (Zap2it.com) - - In many ways, fans of science fiction, fantasy and horror have made the Internet their own.

Not only are there fan sites, fan fiction and the usual chatter amongst fans, but the proliferation of spoiler sites -- which ferret out information on upcoming TV episodes -- has affected how shows are produced. An unprecedented level of secrecy now surrounds -- or at least tries to -- sweeps episodes, season premieres and season finales of many shows, from "Alias" and "Angel" to "Smallville" and "Stargate SG-1."

Multiple endings, scripts printed on red pages (a favorite "24" trick), closed soundstages -- producers try many things to keep their secrets, but as often as not, they fail. Information is the currency of the Internet, and making one's bones by spoiling hit shows is an everyday practice.


So fans heading out into cyberspace to find info on a favorite show should be forewarned that there be spoiler-breathing dragons out there (of course, anyone watching certain networks' on-air promos should also be wary).
On the other hand, while producers struggle to keep secrets, many have also used the Internet to communicate with fans as never before. J. Michael Straczysnki used the Web to bring fans along with him on every step of the five seasons of his sci-fi epic, "Babylon 5."

Joss Whedon and the other writers and producers of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and its spin-off, "Angel," have kept up a running conversation on message boards, along with mingling with fans at fan posting-board parties.

When his recent show "Wonderfalls" was in danger of cancellation on Fox, writer-producer Tim Minear, formerly of "Angel," turned to his Internet fans to rally support for the ultimately doomed dramedy. And the fans of "Angel" fought back in unprecedented ways against the cancellation of that show this past spring, coordinated by such sites as "Saving Angel", at http://www.savingangel.org.

They're hardly alone, considering the fierce Internet fan support in the past for shows such as "Farscape," and the current campaign to save UPN's troubled "Star Trek: Enterprise."

So the Web is both a blessing and a curse, and the future influence can only grow greater. Here's a sampling of genre and general-interest sites -- both spoilery and spoiler-free -- that would be fine additions to any fan's Favorites list.

<snipped >

It goes on with a list of web sites.