The moment Rob Thomas announced the Veronica Mars movie Kickstarter, everyone with half a brain knew that it was going to meet its goal. I don’t know that there were many out there that would predict how quickly it would do so. As a matter of fact, the project, which was already the largest in the film category, was the fastest to reach two million dollars across all categories. So yay Veronica Mars movie!!!
If there was anyone that wanted concrete proof that the world of television, and particularly the world of television writer employment is an enigma, look no further than the career of Shawn Ryan. He has had the dubious reputation of being quite possibly the most canceled writer/show runner in Hollywood today. Shows such as Lie to Me, The Unit, The Chicago Code, Last Resort, and Terriers have all been canceled, the last two being within the first season. Only in Hollywood could someone repeatedly be canceled and yet repeatedly finding new jobs.
The holiday season is upon us friends. Gathering around a table full of food, sitting on couches listening to your father and brother scream at the refs in a football game because obviously that is going to help, watching your niece and nephew eat their weight in Christmas cookies, and spending that quality time with your grandmother as she tells you to never have children because they are such a bad idea.
When I started Grizzly Bomb, it was largely done with one focus – Terriers. I had fallen in love with the show and was devastated when I learned that no one else was watching it. My first several articles revolved around an attempt to raise awareness and hopefully boost ratings for the show about the two PIs and their quest to save their beach community. We were far too small however to actually make any kind of impact at the time. Ultimately, the show was canceled. Now there are a lot of things that could be blamed for the show’s fate – poor initial marketing by FX being chief among them. They flooded the channel with advertising, but people simply did not know what the show was about, myself included. I only gave it a chance because it was on FX, a station that seemed to be made specifically for me as I loved their entire schedule at the time. It also didn’t hurt that I was a fan of both Donal Logue and Michael Raymond-James, and that Shawn Ryan (The Shield/The Chicago Code) was the man behind it all.
When I started this site last year, the dominating theme at the start had a lot to with an ‘about to be canceled’ series on FX titled Terriers. Despite abysmal ratings I was holding out hope that FX might be willing to renew for a 2nd season, a show that had really moved me. I was so in love with Terriers in fact, that I’d still have to say it was the best new show of 2010, even over things like Boardwalk Empire, The Walking Dead, and Justified, all which I adore. I wrote articles and e-mails and basically begged people to watch it, but in the end, it was all for naught. The lack of marketing, combined with the confusing nature of the few adds that had been put out ultimately doomed the show.
So for our latest Staff Piece we decided to take a look at shows we feel could’ve gone a little longer. This list is consists of TV shows that could’ve benefited from one more season…
Deadwood (Brian Kronner)
This is one of those shows whose cancellation seemed to make no sense. I mean it obviously came down to the monetary expense of the show’s production and the never stellar ratings like anything else, but it seemed popular enough to survive those obstacles. Critically loved and awarded (28 Emmy Nominations in 3 Years), this is the show that put Ian McShane on the map and won him a Golden Globe during the 2nd season. The show itself ended somewhat ambiguously, with Bullock (Olyphant) and Al Swearengen (McShane) having to join forces against Hearst, who is taking over the town. The season ended with Hearst leaving town, victorious, and many local matters unresolved amongst our principal characters.
Tonight marks the 2nd time in that last year that Shawn Ryan created show, which is better than majority of the programming on Television, will be canceled after only a season on the air. The first was of course Terriers, which was one of my favorite shows ever. The next now is The Chicago Code. Tonight was the last episode of the rookie season for the show, and it will in all likely hood be the last episode ever. Unless however it’s gets a rare cable pickup, the way TNT did with NBC’s Southland, . That however is a ‘Hail Mary’ pass thrown up several times a year that almost never gets caught.
This felt all too familiar. Some 6 or so months ago, I sat here at my desk and typed pleas to the internet community to watch Terriers. I was met with: ‘that new FX show about the dogs?‘. No one could quite figure out the marketing campaign, and that hurt the show. But unlike the networks, our favorite cable station FX let Terriers play out despite the abysmal ratings, instead of canceling it mid-season. I credit FX with giving it a chance, even if they didn’t re-new it. And they’ve just done the same thing again.
CBS has a business model that works. Produce mindless, run of the mill, cookie cutter TV shows and dominate the ratings. The scripts are like those Mad-Lib books where you just fill in the nouns and what not.
The other sure-fire way to the heart of the American viewer is to take Has-Been, semi-celebs and make them do physical challenges, like dancing.
I fear for the worst. Despite my repeated e-mails to FX, it seems as though they may have already given up on Terriers.
During last night’s 90-minute season finale of Sons of Anarchy, which is sure to be FX’s highest-rated show of the winter, they found time for only one Terriers ad. I saw no less than seven commercials for the return of Archer, which is still more than a month away, but only one for Terriers which is on tonight.