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For Matt's writing projects, please go to storiesbymatt.net. Enjoy your visit here!

03/30/08: Random stuff:

03/02/08: One of our favorite shows from last season was Jericho. We watched every episode after catching the terrific pilot, waited patiently during the almost three-month break that CBS inflicted on us before showing the second half of the first season, and were upset and heartbroken when the show was canceled. We weren't among the group that sent thousands of pounds of peanuts to CBS to protest the shows cancellation, but both Stephie and I signed the on-line petitions, and I bought the DVD set when it came out. Stephie thought I was a little nuts (pun intended) for buying the series after we watched every single episode, but I figured that it was my way of directly supporting the show. Plus, I wanted to see the first season again before the second season started, and we don't get channel 2 in very well, so I couldn't really tape it to keep when they reran it over the summer.
     As time rolled by, and the date of the second season premiere approached, I mentioned that I wanted to watch at least part of the DVDs before getting into the second season. Stephie was less than enthusiastic, because "we already watched them." I convinced her that we should at least watch the pilot again, and she agreed that maybe she's like to see the season finale before the new season starts, so a couple Sundays ago, I pulled out the set and popped in the first disk. After the first episode, Stephie said "Maybe we should watch the next one." Seven episodes later, she wanted to watch more, but it was late and I had to go to work the next day! We wound up watching a disk a night after that, finishing the set in a total of four days. On the fifth day, we watched the first two episodes of the new season, and now we're stuck, waiting for more!
     This little marathon confirmed what I thought last year, that Jericho is a terrific show. It's a little like Lost, where you have a group of characters isolated from the rest of the world, and have to rely on each other to survive. But unlike Lost, which we eventually gave up on, there's a logical progression of the plot, and the writers actually give you answers to some of the mysteries as they add more puzzles to the storyline. And while we really enjoyed it as a weekly show last season, I think it works better when watching multiple episodes in one sitting. During last season, I thought the tone of the story changed in the two-and-a-half months it was off last year. It seemed like it abruptly shifted from the town surviving on its own to defending from hostile outside forces, but watching the series as we did over a couple days, the shift now seems more reasonable to me, and much more logical.
     Judging by the first two episodes this year, the quality has not suffered much due to its temporary cancellation, although it's a little different show this season. Where last season was about the town and how it was going to survive after the bombs destroyed most of the major cities in the US, this season seems to be about rebuilding in the aftermath, and also finding who was responsible. I'm curious to see how they're going to do that while still focusing on this small town in Kansas.
     But while they have announced that this second season is only going to be seven episodes long, there are no assurances that it will be back for a third. I understand that the ratings haven't been spectacular, which means that this compelling, unique show is possibly going to be canceled again. I hope that doesn't happen, because quality TV is getting harder and harder to find. We watch less network TV every season, as they cancel shows that we like and replace them with "reality" shows, game shows and other garbage. And when something interesting does find its way to the airwaves, we're hesitant to start it, for fear that we'll get sucked into the show, only to have it canceled after a single season or less, recent examples being Traveler, Invasion, Threshold, The Class, Commander in Chief, Out of Practice, The Job, Joan of Arcadia, It's All Relative, Hidden Hills, and the list goes on. Maybe these were not high art, but we liked 'em. And they were a darn sight more entertaining to us than American Idol! But I digress...
     If you haven't given it a chance, try Jericho. The DVDs are available from Netflix or probably your local video store, and the entire first season is viewable on-line. New episodes are on Tuesday night. And if you like it, tell people about it, like I'm doing here.

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