Wil Wheaton, everyone’s favorite nerd-that-isn’t-Chris-Hardwick, has preached the Word of Nerd in almost every way imaginable, from his podcast Radio Free Burrito to hosting and sitting on panels at various fests and cons. And he’ll get to do it on a weekly televised basis starting Tuesday, May 27, as Syfy announced they’ll be airing The Wil Wheaton Project, a half-hour run through the science fiction gauntlet giving viewers the funniest and most interesting news and videos that the genre has to offer. Syfy has ordered 12 episodes of the series.
Perhaps best known to sci-fi fans as the perfectly coifed Wesley Crusher on Star Trek: The Next Generation – and to others as Gordie in Rob Reiner’s Stand by Me – Wheaton will bring his trademark humor and positivity to the worlds of movies, TV, video games, viral videos and pop culture in general. If Patrick Stewart takes a picture of Ian McKellen standing next to it, you can bet we’ll see Wheaton talking about it. And it’s possible he’ll have a couple of guests helping him along the way, though no names were given.
Wheaton announced the news himself via his highly popular blog site WIL WHEATON dot NET, where he describes the Project as “sort of like Talk Soup for geeks.” He points out the show’s original concept was based purely on making fun of over-the-top paranormal shows that Ghost Hunters ushered into existence. (I’m already calling this to be my favorite part of the show, as I abhor Zak Bagans’ Ghost Adventures and anything even closely resembling it.)
Wheaton’s announcement is a delightful read, as are most of his musings, and it documents the series’ entire existence, from the pitch meeting to the shooting of the pilot. A little drama is injected into the story when he talks about the Syfy exec who approved the show leaving the network before the pilot was produced. If The Will Wheaton Project is written with the same level of care, it could be the best unscripted show on TV.
Even though he’s widely known for his own personality these days, Wheaton is still an actor, though a lot of that is voicework. He’s had a recurring guest role on CBS’ The Big Bang Theory over the years, along with regular roles on Eureka and The Guild, and there’s a good chance you’ve heard him on Generator Rex, Ben 10 or one of many video games. Additionally, he hosts the gaming webseries Tabletop, an episode of which you can watch below.
There’s also a good chance you’ve seen this video making the rounds on the Internet recently, featuring Wheaton’s inspirational advice to anyone who’s ever been called a nerd in a derogatory way. Can we not give this guy at least two more shows to host?