Television & Film

Happy Gets a New Home. What Should We Expect?

A Happy pilot comes to Syfy, hopefully sometime soon. 

Let me begin by saying that the comic book Happy is quite bloody, very gritty, and very… VERY dark.  This is a grim tale about Nick Sax, who is a disgraced detective; a good man who is beaten down and broken by the world he tried to save.  

Nick used to be happily married with a good job on the force.  Then he had to start working crime scenes and the worst of humanity began chipping away at him.  Unfortunately, Sax is just human.  No super powers or resolve-of-steel here, folks.  His only salvation may lie in an imaginary tiny blue flying unicorn named Happy that sees the best in humanity and is willing to drag Sax kicking and screaming into the light to save a missing girl.  Can this cop-turned-hitman find enough hope and Christmas cheer to stop a kidnapper in a Santa suit who has taken Happy’s friend?

What can we expect from this show?

The pilot is being co-written by Grant Morrison and Brian Taylor.  Comic book fans may know Morrison who is the author of the comic miniseries Happy, The Invisibles, Animal Man, and my two favorites, All-Star Superman and WE3, among countless other series.  

Brian Taylor is known for directing Crank and its sequel.  If you haven’t seen Crank, you should check that out because it is JUST INSANE.  Make sure the kids are out of the house first though.  Crank is an action movie that can only be described as a cross between Looney Tunes and the Grand Theft Auto video games.  

So, after hearing who is directing it and the writing team behind it, I would say viewers could be in for one seriously wild ride.  No lie, this has become my most anticipated show for Syfy.  I expect that the show will be tamed down from the source material at least a little, as keeping true to the comic would require airing it on HBO.  Again, the comic is VERY graphic.  The potential is here though, for a long hard look at society, our disconnection from each other, and every-man values.  Having Morrison writing the pilot ensures that at least the launch will receive the treatment it deserves.  

I only wonder how much Syfy will shackle Morrison.  If left to his own devices, Morrison can get very dark, VERY abstract and quite esoteric, requiring multiple viewings/readings.  I for one am quite excited, as having Morrison on board means Happy could turn into the worlds largest onion-of-a-tv-show.  Sooooo many layers (and probably tears).

The main star will be Chris Meloni.  I think Chris is a great pick as his prior work on CSI means Sax’s history as a detective should come easy, as well as being exposed to the dark underbelly of humanity.  Throw in some of those fairly gross clothes he wears on Underground and you have a ready-made Sax.  I mean, just look at Meloni in Underground!

Meloni could be staring down a homicidal Santa here!
Photo Credit : Sony Pictures Television from Underground Season#1 Episode #1


I will end with a quote from one of Grant’s most well known comics to give you a modicum of what you can expect in terms of breadth:

Your head’s like mine, like all our heads; big enough to contain every god and devil there ever was. Big enough to hold the weight of oceans and the turning stars. Whole universes fit in there! But what do we choose to keep in this miraculous cabinet? Little broken things, sad trinkets that we play with over and over. The world turns our key and we play the same little tune again and again and we think that tune’s all we are. ~ Grant Morrison, The Invisibles

Check out the graphic novel here. Mature audiences only!



Dave Baker

I am a lifelong geek who has been collecting comics and loving B movies for 25+ years. I grew up on movies like Critters, Phantasm, Animal House, Blues Brothers, Goonies, Blade Runner, Flash Gordon (1980) and worked my way through the horror, comedy and action sections of the local video store. I currently read comics from publishers like Image, Aftershock, Black Mask, Boom, etc. I do read Karnak and Moon Knight from Marvel and All-Star Batman from DC (Snyder's current run). I am a HUGE science fiction and horror fan. My most prized comic is my complete original run of Preacher #'s 1-66 which I bought myself as they came out back in 1996. I have been attending comic conventions across the country for years and have attended Planet Comicon since it's 2nd year. I also love table-top gaming, D&D, and am currently (slowly) 3D printing a map of our custom world.

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