When Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome was first announced, it was as a 10-part online web series. But upon the cancellation of Caprica, Syfy announced that it would be coming to broadcast as a 2-hour backdoor pilot for a potential TV series. Now, it seems, Syfy is second-guessing that decision.
According to AOL TV, Mark Stern has seen a rough cut of the production, and is still weighing the decision of whether to air it as a TV-movie or a web series. While this comes as a bit of unexpected news to me, it’s not a shock, because there are many reasons to believe that the numbers simply wouldn’t be there to sustain a TV production. The numbers for Battlestar Galactica were never wonderful, and they continually sunk as the series went on. The numbers for Caprica were absolutely abysmal, possibly indicating some franchise fatigue.
Especially when Live + 7 numbers are all that counts for TV-broadcasting, Syfy may be able to expand their market power by using a per-view model for each 5-10 minute online episode. (Science fiction fans are notorious for DVR viewing, online viewing, and doing all the wrong things to get their shows canceled.)
In addition to all of the aforementioned factors, the way for premium web content is being paved by upcoming productions like H+, and certainly, if any show could last several seasons on the internet, it would be a Battlestar Galactica show. The only downside I could see to this is that a season on the internet would be smaller than a typical trial-run of 13 episodes for a season of TV, but I could see them expanding a second online season for Blood & Chrome well beyond just another two-hours.
I daresay, this could be the jump-start that the mainstream web series genre needs! Very exciting stuff!
What do you think? Would you like to see Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome as a web series?