Imagine every single human being from the entire course of history simultaneously resurrected on the shores of a seemingly infinite river. Fifty billion of us, each brought back to life the moment after death in an impossible world where death means being born again in the river, an endless series of resurrections. Conquistadors, serfs, bricklayers, legionaries, kings, soccer moms, living side by side. Every peacemaker and warlord ever birthed by human kind arrives to start from scratch at once. Every religion’s version of the afterlife was wrong, and the hereafter is heaven or hell by nothing but our own hands.
Philip José Farmer’s Riverworld novels are simply brilliant science fiction, but they are just outside the mainstream enough not to get much attention outside readers of the genre. The SciFi Channel tried to adapt it into a television series back in 2003, but the pilot was widely panned and no further episodes were made. Six years on, SyFy is trying again, this time with a mini-series, starring Tahmoh Penikett and Laura Vandervoort.
Wait a second … resurrection … Helo … Gaeta … SciFi Channel … is this the real final episode of Battlestar Galactica?