Syfy has announced that it will be developing a documentary series, Hackers, with Relativity Television (Catfish: The TV Series), to add to its ever-expanding slate of reality programming. Using “sophisticated digital graphics,” the show will look to do something that AMC’s Halt and Catch Fire couldn’t quite manage: to make someone working on a computer look exciting. Hit the jump for how things have changed since Jonny Lee Miller and Angelina Jolie were Hackers in 1995.
Syfy is a channel that has never been afraid to throw things at the wall and see what sticks. Some of its scripted programming is terrible (Dominion) while other series show promise (Helix, Ascension). Its reality programming follows a similar dichotomy, although just within two categories: the paranormal (Ghost Hunters, Haunted Highway) and the super nerdy (Heroes of Cosplay, Wizard Wars).
The Hackers TV show will most likely fall into the latter. According to a press release for the show, “Hackers, will take viewers deep inside the shadowy and dangerous world of high-tech hackers for the very first time.” The show will also work hard to make viewers feel like they are inside of the process, instead of just watching someone stare at a screen and type furiously.
The press release also says episodes of Hackers will unveil “ripped from the headlines” stories, which makes it seem like this will be a series fully run on reenactments. But Syfy also seems to have real hackers on hand, “who will reveal how they committed the crime, from trolling the Internet to rooting out vulnerabilities inside the company websites.”
As wary as one should be about the series, Relativity Television has had a (surprising) bonafide hit with Catfish: The TV Series, which could make Hackers ultimately more promising than it first seems. And of course, seeing just how easily someone can breach security, to reveal a credit card you used at Target six months ago, may make Hackers one of Syfy’s scariest series yet.