While thinking about Avatar, my mind wandered to other similar Earth military in space (say it Pigs in Space style) themed shows. Foremost was :
Fox Network Presents to be Canceled Soon:
Space: Above and Beyond
Starring: Crusty Commander- Miss Bad Ass- Rebel Without a Clue- All American Minority- The Driven One
Featuring: Admiral No Nonsense- Slutty Villainess With 80's Hair- That Guy Who Got Famous Playing Himself
Special Guest Star: Red Shirt
Based on that movie we didn't watch. Based on that book cover the director found blowing down the street.
It was derivative to the extreme, yet somehow it managed to work. I thought all the actors did very well considering what they had to deal with, and I wish some had gone on to bigger stardom. Good special effects for TV, ship design was wanting. (Why is the X-Wing still the standard?) There was even a willingness to throw in some ethical problems and character development.
I like more lasers and robots with my space wars, so Space: Above and Beyond is a matter of personal taste; however, I must say this scene is one of the best in sci-fi TV: