Once again I find myself on the soapbox about G4, the video game cable channel that apparently doesn't want to be about video games anymore. The one bright spot on that channel has been Icons, a Biography-style show about pivotal people, technology, games, and characters in the video game industry. It was canceled last year (of course), but I've been watching reruns lately on my cable system's OnDemand service. They've had some interesting stuff such as the history of the Game Boy, the rise & fall of the Sega Dreamcast, a profile of Yuji Naka, the life & times of Donkey Kong, and even a look at Ralph Baer's impact on the video game industry. Now G4 is set to relaunch the show, but it won't be about video games anymore. Variety has the story.
One of [Laurie] Finn's priorities will be to scout people to profile when Icons relaunches this summer. The Biography-style skein has been revamped to focus on figures that appeal to young men, including J.J. Abrams and Bryan Singer.
Let me be blunt: I don't care about J.J. Abrams or Bryan Singer. I like Lost and the X-Men films, sure, but I don't care about their life stories. I'm just not interested in biographies about the current "hot name" of the month. The original incarnation of Icons could hit some obscure topics, something that I believe was part of its charm. I cannot believe that the new "hip" Icons would even consider approaching someone removed from the 18-24 year old demographic (someone like Ralph Baer, for example). This is all part of G4's move away from video gaming, and I just wish that the channel would move on and officially dump the gaming theme already. They obviously no longer want it. If the channel wants to be an all-purpose young mens' network, then just let it happen. Don't keep killing the few bright spots of the network in slow pieces like a prolonged torturous execution. Just swing the blade and be done already!