When I compiled the list of current Sci-fi shows recently, one show that I was unsure whether to include or not was Haven. It airs on the Syfy channel and it has some scientific elements in it, but my general feeling was that it was more of a fantasy/supernatural show; I am pretty sure that most people would agree with me on that, even though the definition of what science fiction is can be fairly murky.
Based on the novel, ‘The Colorado Kid’ by Stephen King, Haven revolves around a community plagued by odd phenomena and abilities, which are being investigated by an FBI agent, Audrey Parker, after she finds herself in the town on another case.
Initially, Haven was a bit of a ‘monster of the week’ affair, much like most new series, but as the first season developed it spread its wings and ended on a very effective cliffhanger, which opened up the possibilities. The second season has so far continued to build upon these developments and raised several questions that have yet to be answered. It is this development that makes me wonder if it is a sci-fi show instead of, or possibly as well as, a fantasy/supernatural one.
There are story lines that suggest genetic and geographic connections between people and places, which could possibly indicate an underlying scientific basis, and most issues tend to have rational explanations, albeit within a different context than mainstream society. This wouldn’t completely discount a non-scientific basis co-existing with the scientific though.
On the other hand, is the science more fundamental than just being one element of the puzzle?
If you used the premise that all magic is just natural phenomena that has yet to be explained by science, then most of the things in the show would become science fiction, or at least could be viewed as having scientific elements at their core. Without going down any amateur philosophy rabbit-holes though, it would raise several questions/concepts about the nature of the universe and would apply to a lot of fantasy series!
Really, all of this is just an interesting thought exercise and ultimately, it comes down to the question of whether we really care what genre it is? I, for one, will just enjoy it as it continues to improve!