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Revisiting The Guild of Echo Transit

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For another visit to my idea factory – well, really more like conceits or hooks, because none of them are fully formed – I’m hitting the Guild and continuing the trend of music and existing IP turning into something weird. This one has a lot of similarities to “Serenity Spec Ops,” but they were originally published eight months apart, so it probably wasn’t noticeable when it was first presented.

Originally presented 29 Jun 2010

Okay, so here’s the latest brainstorm, courtesy of the Crystal Method’s Vegas album, but more specifically supported by “Keep Hope Alive,” the awesome tune that intro’d Chow Yun Fat in the fun but ultimately forgettable Replacement Killers. That movie remains a go-to movie for me because it has Mr. Chow, it has Mira Sorvino being all hot and action-y, and it tries to bring John Woo’s Gun-fu to North America along with Mr. Chow. It’s a fun movie, it just isn’t a great movie.

In any case, on the way to work this morning and I’m on the bus, listening to tunes. As has happened so often in the past, that leads to the plotting out of a movie and even a couple of scenes.

The elevator pitch? The cast of the Guild as a team of extra-terrestrial technology recovery specialists called Echo Transit 1.

You need more details before you decide to invest in this movie/mini-series/TV series? Why certainly.

Echo Transit 1—or ET1 . . . yeah, stupid I know, but it amuses me—is part of MAGENTA, set up when MAJESTIC went rogue back in the 1980s. MAJESTIC had all the cool alien artefacts, and MAGENTA was tasked with recovering them. Protocols are now in place to have a MAGENTA recovery team as first responders to any alien incursion anywhere in the world. Most of MAJESTIC has been . . . removed, but some are still around, and they may be aligned with sinister outside influences—possibly alien, possibly not.

That’s all background.

The movie would start with an explosion near a small village in Russia’s back-and-beyond. The villagers who to investigate are vaporized. Cue Echo Transit 1.

During the credits, the team is shown being assembled. Felicia Day plays “Alfa,” the team leader, and an ex-spook for an unnamed agency. She is having a coffee on a patio somewhere in the Mediterranean when she gets the call on her smartphone. She drops some money and goes. When she puts her wallet back in her purse/bag/whatever, we see the weapon with which she travels. It looks like a pistol, but not. Oh yeah, that’s some alien tech happening.

Then we are in a Buddhist or Buddhist-like temple. We are watching “Kilo” meditate. Kilo is played by Jeff Lewis. He is one the team medic and operations man—kind of an executive officer for Alfa. He likes to make sure nobody gets up after going down, so he carries a Desert Eagle .50 autoloader. He gets his activation message and we pan back to see he is somewhere very, very mountainous and a chopper is en route to pick him up.

Next we have Sandeep Parikh playing “Tango.” We see him teaching a young woman some advanced martial arts in a gym. The young woman happens to be “Charlie,” played by Amy Okuda. Tango is the team’s—you guessed it—martial arts expert while Charlie is the weapons specialist. She’s into suppressive fire, so she tends to use two H&K MP7s. They both get the message at the same time, both excuse themselves, then, after reading their respective messages, kind of look at each other like “Hey, wait a minute . . .” There’s a pull back to show that the gym they are using is somewhere inside an underground bunker in a mountain—maybe the Cheyenne Mountain facility?

Finally we are in a university classroom talking very high-level, incomprehensible quantum biology stuff about possible exo-systems existing beyond our planet. The lecturer is quite young. He is also a fucking genius. This is “Victor,” played by Vincent Caso. He’s the team’s xeno-biology expert and general tech-head. He gets the call, ends the class, gathers up his stuff, and is met by two suited, sunglass-wearing goons, who escort him out to the chopper.

But wait, doesn’t that leave one member? Yes it does.

The credits are done, and we are now at a Russian command and control facility. A junior officer indicates that the Russian platoon sent to put things in order at the “incident site” has disappeared. The flag officer to whom he is reporting tells him that the Russian Space Forces now has command of the location. He accepts this without question. As he leaves, the flag officer tells her aide to ready a contact team, and to have satellites survey the area. There is some discussion about the time this will take, but the flag officer is adamant. She goes to her office, picks up her smartphone, and indicates that the Russian contact team has been delayed, and that she will need exfil at the agreed upon location.

This is Ruby, a deep cover operative for Magenta, and she is played by Robin Thorsen.

Where does it go from here? Picture the first act: ET1 getting into position, figuring out that this is an extra-dimensional incursion (apparently this kind of thing happens). What’s more, something survived the transposition, and it’s dangerous.

Act two would be the team hunting down the baddie. They are up against the clock because the Russian contact team is due. Since the team isn’t exactly supposed to be there, this is a problem. Perhaps as big a problem as the extra-dimensional, weaponized sentient the team is tracking.

Act three is the big bash up, as the team realizes this is the first step in a possible invasion. Yes, MAJESTIC is involved, those bastards. Worse yet, there’s more than one of those dimensional thingees running around, and they can subvert regular people, turning them into scaries—are zombies still cool? Should we use werewovles?

Okay, so I can write this script for you, and my prices are very reasonable.

Oh, and the pilot of the Ghost—an uber-futuristic stealth VTOL aircraft? They call him Hawkes, and he’s played by Wil Wheaton.

Oh yeah.

Seriously, wouldn’t you totally love to see this movie? Even as a SyFy original?

Who is the Crystal Method?

What is the Guild?

Where have I done this before?