Thursday, December 01, 2005

FOX Sucks

I read somewhere the other day that FOX has cancelled Reunion. Now, this isn't surprising, the show isn't that great and the ratings apparently suck. However, I've been watching it anyway, simply because it was a unique idea and I was interested to see something different. In case you haven't heard about it, it follows 6 friends through 20 years from high school to the present, with each show detailing a year in their lives. The interesting part is, in the present, one of them has been murdered, and possibly one of the others was the murderer. Anyway, like I said, it's not that great, and I'm not one to get too upset over shows being cancelled, but this one bothers me because from what I've read so far, it looks like they aren;t even going to finish the season, which means we won't find out who the murderer is, or what led up to the murder. The reason I think this sucks is that they're basically saying "fuck you" to all the people who have invested time in this show so far.

Now, you could say that about any show that gets cancelled, and they can't keep every show on the air just because they might piss off a few people by cancelling it. But the reason I think this kind of show is different is that the main draw of the series is the ongoing developing story, not the story in the individual episodes, like in CSI or Law and Order or a more conventional show. I think when you put a show like this on the air (and hype it the way FOX did), then you should make a commitment to your viewers to at least complete the story in some fashion, and in this case that means a full season. If FOX wasn't comfortable with making that commitment, they shouldn't have put it on the air. And not just because of the (apparently few) viewers they may piss off with this particular show. But because next year, if they do a show that has a ongoing plot, no matter how good it is, anyone who was screwed over this time will be less likely to watch it. I know I was excited to watch Prison Break this season (and it's pretty good), but if it hadn't started yet, I certainly wouldn't start watching now. Because I'm not going to commit my time to a show that isn't going to commit to giving me the full story promised.

And this doesn't even take into account that FOX seems to have a quick hook for some shows in the first place. They wouldn't have had to bring Family Guy back, if they had never gotten rid of it in the first place. If FOX keeps this shit up, when the Simpsons run finally ends, the entire network may come crashing down like a house of cards.

And while I'm on the subject, I've heard rumors that Rome may not be coming back to HBO. And to the people at HBO, I would say, The Sopranos (if it ever actually returns) has to be near the end, Six Feet Under is over, you cancelled Carnivale. Deadwood is a great, great show, but it can't carry your network alone, and if you have to go back to showing movies all the time, you're in trouble. The only reason I (and I would guess a lot of others) still subscribe is because of the great original shows. Last year, I would have watched anything you put on the air, and I probably still would, but if you keep cancelling the good shows prematurely, that won't be true for much longer. Your next show may be the greatest show in the history of television, but if no one watches it because they're afraid you'll cancel after one season, then it doesn't do you any good.

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Robert Bayn said...

I don't think i watch anything thing on fox, in fact the only network show i watch is 'SuperNatrual' on WB.

John Howard said...

I'm not sure WB really counts as a network.

Me4Prez said...

I am still mad about Arrested Development. Why does Fox not like shows that involve intellect?

maurinsky said...

I recently rented the DVDs of "Undeclared", an excellent and funny that was treated capriciously by Fox - they ran episodes out of order and changed the scheduling several times, and then cancelled it.

One of the extras was a panel discussion at the Museum of Radio & Television, with the cast and producers and a couple of writers. Judd Apatow, who created the show, laid out the network way of thinking, which is that they believe that people will only tune in to, at best 4 episodes, so rather than build an audience over time, they prefer to run what they consider the better episodes, even if it takes stories out of context or out of the timeline.

This is what Fox did with Undeclared, it's what they did to Firefly. They killed Futurama by putting it on at, like 7pm during football season. They moved Brisco County all over the schedule. Fox is a show killer.

Since this is their MO, I wonder why they even bothered to put on a show that is designed around slowly building a story.

When Arrested Development goes off the air, the only shows I will be watching will be The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and Veronica Mars.

Robert Bayn said...

I don't know they call fox a network, so i guess WB has to be too.

Toast said...

Get the fuck out. They wouldn't cancel Rome, would they? That show was a masterpiece. 6FU was at the end of its run. Carnivale was tedious (although I would like to see them wrap it up). But Rome? They wouldn't dare.