Sci-Fi Friday, Sci-Fi Channel / Syfy
Okay, so... The Sci-Fi Channel launched in 1992, but of course I didn't have access to cable until I went to college in 1995. And I don't think my college had Sci-Fi when I started attending, though I soon started hanging out on the channel's website, which was then scifi.com ("The Dominion"), anyway. I seem to recall seeing ads on TV shortly before going home for Christmas break that year, saying that our cable provider was going to start carrying Sci-Fi in like January of 96, maybe, though I'm not sure about that. Anyway... at some point I started watching the network, though I don't remember anything specific about it. It was probably even then still kind of random in its scheduling. It was most likely in March of 1999, when Farscape premiered, that the channel started using Friday nights from 8 to 11* as a specific night for airing a block of new shows, as opposed to the countless reruns of shows that had mostly existed before the channel itself existed. (Though the block would sometimes air slightly older shows, as well as new ones.) But I'm afraid I didn't actually watch Farscape when it premiered; it was some time later that I watched a marathon of the first season, before the second season started. (Or maybe I'd even missed more than one season, I'm not sure. Either way, at some point I got caught up, and then started watching first-run episodes of the series.)
I also don't really remember any specific names for blocks, but while I was researching different blocks for this whole section, I saw mention of something called "Sci-Friday," which didn't exactly ring any bells, but didn't exactly not. Anyway, I couldn't find any info about it. When I "finished" the section, I posted a link to it on a board I frequent, whose owner just happened to suggest I include "Sci-Friday" or "Sci-Fi Friday," whichever it was. So I set out to do more research, and while my memory got jogged at least vaguely, I still can't remember little details like when the block started or when it might have ended. Also, I was reminded that before Sci-Fi Friday, there was "Sci-Fi Prime," and in particular "Friday Prime." So I'm going to include that era (which most likely coincided with the premiere of Farscape) under the heading of Sci-Fi Friday. As for when the block started to use the latter name, I'm afraid I still couldn't tell you, but just for the sake of argument, I'm going to toss out "roughly 2002" as my best guess. Meanwhile, I'm going to comb through Inner Mind's list of past Sci-Fi Channel schedules to see what shows aired on Friday nights starting in 1999, and, uh... I'll list those shows here.
*The block may have sometimes included the 7pm hour, or maybe 11pm. I dunno, but I'm just going to concentrate on things that aired at 8, 9, and 10pm. In rare cases I may feel bad about that, but most of the time it doesn't really bother me. Also note that several of the shows listed here debuted in other timeslots on Sci-Fi Channel prior to moving to Sci-Fi Fridays, and some moved to other timeslots after joining the Friday lineup. And they may or may not have later moved back to Fridays. Yup, believe it or not, a cable channel moved shows around a lot. And some of the things listed here were only part of the Fridays schedule very briefly, while others were part of the lineup for most or all of their runs. So it's possible I've made some mistakes in including (or not including) certain things on this page.
Sliders (1995-97 on FOX, 1998-2000 on Sci-Fi)
"First Wave" (1998-2001)
Farscape and Sliders continue, though the latter ends in early February.
"Lexx" (1997-2002; reruns of a Canadian series)
"Good vs. Evil" (1999 on USA, March-May 2000 on Sci-Fi)
"The Invisible Man" (2000-2002)
Farscape continue, Invisible Man returns in March, Lexx returns in July.
"Black Scorpion" (January-June 2001)
The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne (2000; reruns of a Canadian series)
The Outer Limits (1995-2000 on Showtime, 2001-02 on Sci-Fi)
Invisible Man and Outer Limits continue, though the latter ends in mid-January, when Lexx returns. Farscape returns in March.
The Chronicle (2001-02)
"Strange World" (1999 on ABC, February-May 2002 on Sci-Fi)
"Stargate SG-1" (1997-2002 on Showtime, 2002-07 on Sci-Fi)
Night Visions (2001 on FOX, 2002 on Sci-Fi)
The Dead Zone (2002-07 on USA; reruns)
"In Search Of..." (October-November 2002)
Farscape and Stargate continue.
"Tracker" (2001-02; reruns of a Canadian series)
"Tremors: The Series" (March-August 2003)
"Scare Tactics" (2003-present)
"Cleopatra 2525" (2000-01 in syndication; reruns)
"Code Name: Eternity" (2000; reruns of Canadian series)
Andromeda (2000-05 originally in syndication)
"Stargate Atlantis" (2004-09)
Both Stargates continue.
Battlestar Galactica (2004-09)
"Ghost Hunters" (2004-present)
Both Stargates and Galactica continue.
Doctor Who (2005-present; moved to BBC America in 2010)
"Night Stalker" (2005-06 on ABC; reruns)
Both Stargates and Doctor Who continue.
Jake 2.0 (2003-04 on UPN; reruns)
Special Unit 2 (2001-02 on UPN; reruns)
Heroes (2006-10 on NBC; reruns)
"Painkiller Jane" (2007)
"Flash Gordon" (2007-08)
"Odyssey 5" (2002; reruns of a Canadian series)
Stargate Atlantis, Doctor Who, and Galactica continue. Flash Gordon ends in February.
"Chuck" (2007-12 on NBC; reruns)
"Jericho" (2006-08 on CBS; reruns)
The Sarah Jane Adventures (2007-11 on CBBC; reruns)
"Charlie Jade" (2005; reruns of a Canadian series)
Joan of Arcadia (2003-05 on CBS; reruns)
Sanctuary continues. Stargate Atlantis ends in January, Galactica in March.
Invasion (2005-06 on ABC; reruns)
"Moonlight" (2007-08 on CBS; reruns)
Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987-94 in syndication; reruns)
"Primeval" (2007-11 on ITV; reruns)
In July, Sci-Fi Channel rebrands itself as "Syfy"
Warehouse 13 (2009-14)
"Stargate Universe" (2009-11)
Eureka, Sanctuary, Stargate Universe, and Warehouse 13 continue.
"Merlin" (2008-12 on BBC 1; reruns)
"WWE Smackdown" begins the end of Sci-Fi Fridays. Any genre programming you may encounter on Friday nights from this point on is probably just a coincidence.