Thursday, May 12, 2005

Thoughts On A "Season" Finale

Among the things I do besides writing this blog is to write recaps for the Amazing Race newsgroup, and believe me it's a taxing self imposed job to the point where I'm often totally exhausted on the day after because I've been up until four in the morning or later. Consequently I haven't reviewed two of my favourite series this year - House and Lost not to mention Smallville. I intend to remedy that now that Amazing Race is over... but not right now.

Actually this post is about a show I've reviewed earlier. Last night was billed by The WB as the season finale of Jack & Bobby but the whole exercise stank of being the series finale. Not only did we finally meet the boys' father, played by Lou Diamond Phillips with the thickest Hispanic accent I've ever heard him use, but we also found out how Jack dies - gun downed in a convenient store robbery after being a war hero, a conscientious public defender and a Democratic Congressman. It also seemed to wrap up the documentary on the life of President McAllister with a final coda from Bobby's mentor Peter Benedict, played as an old man by legendary TV producer Norman Lear, and the documentary narrator played by Gore Vidal. The episode was good and set up the course that Jack and Bobby's lives would take because of their trip to meet their father, but there's a depressing finality to it as a way to end a show's season.

Of course it probably is the series finale. While The WB hasn't announce its "upfronts" yet, Jack & Bobby has been the lowest rated show on any network (with the possible exception of the soon to be defunct PAX network of course) in the United States and being last on the ratings list doesn't normally get you renewed even on The WB. Which is a damned shame really because the show is generally quite good. The problem may well have been when they chose to show it. It stated out on Sunday nights with Charmed and was moved to Tuesday nights following Smallville. Neither show was exactly a good fit for it - a better match for Jack & Bobby might have been on Monday nights with either Seventh Heaven or Everwood but with both series continuing and the network not wanting to anger affiliates like WPIX, WGN or KTLA by running a third hour of shows (thereby postponing the local news) putting it on Monday night is out. And the network doesn't have another night where the shows they have will work with Jack & Bobby. It's a shame really that a show like this will likely get cancelled when Joey has been renewed for next year.

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