THE SCI-FI PODCAST BONUS: The Tahmoh Penikett Interview

Tahmoh Penikett 2
Hey, space cadets! After a meteor shower of technical difficulties, The Sci-Fi Podcast is back in action! That’s not to say that the technical difficulties are over, mind you. We’re still sputtering along like the Millennium Falcon with a broken hyperdrive, but this special bonus episode is a test of our feed to make sure you can get future episode of the show straight to your iTunes and Sticher and other pod-catching software once we finally “punch it” like that giant walking carpet would do.

In this bonus episode, Mattroid brings you a fun interview with Tahmoh Penikett while both of them are on their phones, driving their cars. Clearly, Matt and Tahmoh haven’t seen Werner Herzog’s PSA documentary, “From One Second to the Next,” but you’ve seen Tahmoh Penikett on Dollhouse, in his guest appearances on Supernatural, Arrow and Smallville and, of course, on Battlestar Galactica, where he unforgettably portrayed Helo.
Riftworld Tahmoh
Now, Tahmoh is out on the press circuit, promoting his new web series, The Riftworld Chronicles–which drops tonight at midnight–and he’s a great interview. We were happy and lucky to get him. Unfortunately, due to the above-mentioned cars and telephones, this interview sounds like the contents of all the detention-level trash compactors on the Death Star–that’s “garbage” for the uninitiated. Or better yet, do you remember when Princess Leia called the Millenium Falcon a “bucket of bolts”? Well, this interview sounds like it was recorded inside an actual bucket of bolts! But, Tahmoh is still a great interviewee and this is still a fun listen, so give it a shot.

And if all goes well, The Sci-Fi Podcast will be blasting into hyperdrive and into some earbuds near you in the very near future and blowing your mind in the process! Afterall, this is the podcast that made the Kessel run in less than 12 parsces.

—Send emails or pre-recorded voicemails to ask [at] thescifipodcast [dot] com
—If you’re on Facebook, please “like” the TSFP Facebook page and connect with other listeners.
—Theme music courtesy of I Hear Sirens, featuring Matt on bass and Liz on keyboard. Hear more of I Hear Sirens ethereal, instrumental, post-rock at BandCamp.
—Podcast production by Mattroid and SpaceWolf. SpaceWolf can be found podcasting at Movie Stream Cast and Horror Movie Podcast. You can also follow him on Twitter @IcarusArts.

66 thoughts on “THE SCI-FI PODCAST BONUS: The Tahmoh Penikett Interview

  1. Thanks Spacewolf, and not just for the repeated jabs at my best efforts on an extremely short-notice interview, but for helping us navigate the odds…which you should never tell William!

    Oh boy, I need some sleep.

          • It wasn’t that bad you guys! It sounded ok and I never had trouble understanding what was being said.

            Great interview by the way. I can’t say I’m a big fan of Tahmoh Penikett because I haven’t seen him in a lot of stuff, but I did love his work in Dollhouse. The guy sounds humble and down to earth, so I liked him like 100 times more after this interview. You guys make such a big deal about Battlestar Galactica that it makes me want to watch the show. I’ve seen one or two episodes of the remake and it was ok, but I suppose there’s so much to the show that I’d need to watch a whole season in order to make a real assessment of whether the show’s for me or not. From the shows that you’ve praised in the past, I’m with you 100% on Dollhouse, Firefly, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and Angel. I’m a huge Joss Whedon fan as you can tell. Knowing that, do you think Battlestar Galactica would be a show I would enjoy?

            Anyway, I’m glad to hear you guys are back. It was about time!

  2. Mr Penikett sounds like a genuinely intelligent and lovely chap and this interview was great.

    I’m going to risk having my Sci-Fi card revoked and admit that I’ve never checked out the new “Battlestar Galactica” (though I did watch the old one a lot when I was a kid) or “Dollhouse” for that matter. I’m not even sure if the latter is Sci-Fi but either way after this interview I’m tempted to give both shows a watch. And of course I’ll check out “Riftworld Chronicles” too because it sounds like a lot of fun.

    • One of the most sincere and courteous celebrities I’ve met, and I’ve met many.

      Next to James Marsters and John Rhys Davies, Tahmoh was the most real. Such a great guy.

      Watched Riftworld yet? And if you don’t watch BSG or Dollhouse, I’m coming to the UK to whomp you.

      • I’ve seen the first four episodes of “Riftworld” so far and have been thoroughly entertained. Tahmoh is charismatic and genuinely funny in his fish-out-of-water role.

        As for BSG, I’m planning on giving the miniseries a whirl pretty soon. I’m especially excited to find out that Ronald D. Moore is involved. He did significant work on “Deep Space Nine” which is in my opinion the best written of all the “Star Trek” shows.

          • I love TNG but I think the overall arc of DS9 is way stronger and more compelling (though arguably less Star Treky). The tone is darker and feels less naive (not necessarily a positive attribute but just more to my taste) and I think it’s overall a more consistent show.

            I will say that TNG probably has more utterly classic moments and it’s best episodes exceed anything from DS9 but taken as a whole I find the latter a more cohesive and satisfying show.

            Also, TNG just sort of putters to a stand still at the end whereas DS9 goes out with a bang.

            All that said though I’ve only seen each series once all the way through so maybe repeat viewings would alter my perceptions.

            Either way, we’re nerds.

  3. Welcome back, everyone!

    It’s awesome to have you blokes/chaps/dudes/friends return, and if I might speak for all of us at TSFP, thank you for your support. It means a hell of a lot.

    Juan, brilliant. BRILLIANT. You’re my Whedon brother in arms (David, that’s your official cue to watch Dollhouse) and I firmly believe you (and again, David) would really like BSG.

    As with most great shows, some of the decisions/paths the show takes polarized the viewers, and I understand. For the record, it’s not like how Lost ended up, a lie built on lies only to deliver milktoast. It a stellar journey with a conclusion that I personally found immensely satisfying, despite the reservations people have.

    It’s a rare bird in that it’s fun but also serious; it’s philosophical, touching on theology, race, gender and social classes. Most importantly it does so with careful craftsmanship and an attention to detail, so it doesn’t waste opportunities to explore these subjects.

    Helo, played by Tahmoh Penikett, is one of a few lynchpin characters that will make you want to follow the actor’s career. He, Chief, Adama and Gaius are all extremely solid points of the show’s heart.

    So watch it! Watch watch watch!

    Also, I have a serious question for you all…even YOU, Dino:

    Buffy is more about horror than anything; it’s largely about vampires, after all. How would you guys feel about us doing a genre bending episode where we bring over someone from HMP (or if ever possible for my own gratification, Gregermortis) and did a special episode on Buffy/Angel? It sounds like this is a self-serving idea for Station and myself, and it is, but we take pride in getting people hooked on these shows and this is a pretty good vessel in which to do that.

    • OMFG! Are you serious!? Of course I’m all about that Buffy/Angel special. Would it be one long episode that includes both shows since they overlap at certain points? Or are you thinking separate episodes for each show? There’s just so much to talk about. It’s kind of daunting. I can’t wait!

      • Well, I don’t know if William has seen it, but Station and I watch both series twice a year at least, so we are well versed.

        We could get a guest or two as well.

        It’s all just an idea for now, but I really, really want to do it.

      • Like Juan, I’m game for that. I never finished Angel, but Buffy was my show through high school and college. SMG… ahhhhhh.

        I’m partial to the HMP guys, but bringing GregaMortis over would be fun, too.

      • Juan,

        Regarding whether or not you would enjoy BGS: It didn’t really tickle my fancy, to be honest. I think it could go either way for you.

        • Dino, ahhhhhhhhhh okokok yes, SMG was my dream girl for a while. A huge part of that was her role in Buffy.

          Station!, yeah I have a feeling that I’ll end up liking it, but it won’t be my new Buffy. I don’t think any show can ever be my new Buffy and that saddens me 🙁

    • These are probably the more obvious choices and some may not even be themes, but rather science fiction tropes. Or maybe I just don’t know how to phrase them properly. Either way, I’d be interested in listening to you tackling these topics:

      – Alien invasion
      – UFOs/Alien contact/Alien abductions
      – Time travel
      – Space travel
      – The end of the world
      – The creation of the world
      – Alternate realities/dimensions/timelines
      – Alien technology/futuristic technology
      – Mars
      – Black holes
      – Giant monsters

      • I think Juan has hit on most of the important stuff here but I’ll throw in my two cents anyway:

        – Benevolent Aliens Vs Malevolent Aliens
        – The Future of Law Enforcement
        – The Future of Warfare
        – “Sci-Fi” as the closest thing pop culture gets to modern philosophy
        – “Sci-Fi” and it’s level of effectiveness as socio-political commentary
        – Philip K. Dick adaptations
        – B-movie Sci-Fi

        These might not all be suitable as full themed episodes but they’re all subjects/discussions that I’d be interested to hear from you guys. Of course there’s the major franchises too and I’d also love to hear about as many obscure/underrated Sci-Fi films as possible because I’m always looking for stuff in genre that I’ve not seen before.

          • “Time travel for every episode is my vote.”

            That might work too, but it’ll give Andy an excuse not to listen to this podcast!

            Coincidentally I’m currently reading a book about time travel physics and another book about quantum theory. They’re frying my unequipped brain! The actual realities of these topics are just infinitely fascinating though. I’ve become obsessed with the way that light travels through the Universe and the concept that if an observer was watching the earth from a far enough distance away right this instant they might be seeing us going about our lives as we were ten years ago or something. Like each moment of our lives leaves us and goes out into the universe looping with each lightyear it travels. There’s something kind of spiritually comforting about it in a way; Happy times with people we love who have passed away might still appear to be unfolding right now depending on the distance of the point of perception.

    • Juan and David already have a substantial list started. The only themes I would add to the mix for now are:

      – The pursuit of immortality -or- consciousness/mind/personality transfer
      – Human enhancement
      – Humans vs. computers (different from a.i.)

      I’m sure others will come to mind.

  4. I just watched a new short film (twice… back-to-back) that is honestly one of the best pieces of science fiction I’ve seen in a long time. It’s called WORLD OF TOMORROW, and is available to rent on Vimeo ($3.99 for 30 days) >>

    The movie is incredibly poignant – shockingly so for such a short film – and introduces so many great science fiction ideas. There are at least three ideas presented in the film that could be the basis of an excellent, full-length sci-fi feature (and one, in particular, that I really really really want to see made into a full-length film). Oh, and apart from being smart and poignant, it’s also funny and the animation is clean, minimal, and gets out of the way of the big ideas being bandied about.

    I obviously recommend checking it out if you haven’t seen it already. The runtime is an easily digestible 16:29, and it’s one that I think you’ll want to watch multiple times. For me, personally, I actually got much more out of the film on my second viewing.

    • But animation is soooooo stupid and it’s for kids! Clearly you must be under the influence of some sort of hallucinogen.

      Said no one ever!

      This looks great, Dino! I’m checking it out fo’sho! This reminds me, I’ve been meaning to ask if anyone could recommend some shorts (moving pictures, not the clothing accessory) because I’ve never really bother to seek them out and I’m sure there must be some great stuff out there. Any classics off the top of your head?

  5. I’ll be checking this out; thanks for the recommendation.

    Reminds me, I’m sure you’ve all heard of/seen the animated film “9”, about the small doll-like stuffed beings and what not. Has anyone seen the short it was based on? It’s far better. Scarier and darker, more gripping, brilliant; kind of the anti-Toy Story in some ways.

    Anyway, sometimes animated short films are the best vehicle for sci-fi.

  6. So I finished all the episodes of “Riftworld Chronicles” that are available and I really liked it. Great cheerful entertainment in perfectly bite-sized chunks and quite addictive.

    I’m also well into “Battlestar Galactica” and so far I’m blown away by how good it is.

    Now when’s the next podcast episode due?

    • Excellent to hear, David!

      We have two in the editing process and one of them will be out next week; possibly both, we will see.

      We are rolling now. We had an awesome guest record with us this week, a real live physicist, and we talked time travel.

      Lots to come. Exciting news to follow.

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