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January 12 2005

Hey, Fox boss: Take your network back. A San Francisco Chronicle columnist takes Gail Berman (Fox network's entertainment president) to task. There's the obligatory Buffy, Firefly, Wonderfalls and Point Pleasant mentions.

We may disagree on some shows -- come on, there's no way "Firefly" was going to work -- but I like your instincts. You helped launch "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" way back in the day. At Fox, you've steered the network to wonderful creative heights -- "Andy Richter Controls the Universe," "Wonderfalls" just to name two of my personal faves.

Firefly was never going to work, I'm assuming because of the concept, yet praise for Buffy and Wonderfalls, which on paper aren't exactly easy to sell concepts. Seems strange to me, especially since there's a very large chance that if Buffy had been on Fox it would've been cancelled during it's 1st season.

Either way I like a lot of what Gail Berman has done and it would be nice if she took control and made more the aforementioned shows - Point Pleasant definately looks like a step in the right direction and way to go for championing Arrested Development
I really am starting too get exited about Point Pleasant.....I hope I do not "hype it too much in my own mind"....
Not sure I understand what the writer means by saying
there's no way "Firefly" was going to work

It would be interesting to have seen what the original Firefly concept actually was, from the commentaries on the DVD's you get the impression that the show as it stands is very much a result of the compromises between Joss's original vision and the notes and comments provided by the network.
From the DVD commentaries I get the feeling that Joss original ideas where leaning towards a quite dark 'Twin peaks in space' rather than the lighter 'Buffy in space' that I'm sure the network where expecting.
I think Firefly could have worked if it was given half a chance to find an audience. It really was a brilliant concept.

And I know what you mean, Jonas, I'm trying not to hype Point Pleasant too much in my mind as well, since Fox has a track record of squashing shows that don't break records from episode one. We'll see, though.
Tim Goodman's point about Fox's failure to promote their critically acclaimed shows such as Firefly, Wonderfalls, and Arrested Developement is especially worth noting--if Gail Berman or anyone else at Fox is out there reading.

They do seem to be advertising Point Pleasant--maybe the success of Lost has made them more optimistic? I'd love to see Marti have a big success with it, but no matter how good it is, it probably won't hold the O.C. audience--different appeal (even though I'll watch both shows--but I'm funny that way).
I think Firefly would have had a chance if they promoted it better then they did, plus they hardly promoted and stuck it on friday night. Also, I have to disagree with this author on '24'. What a great show, one of the best shows for an on going story arc that I love so much.
I also think Firefly would've succeeded if it had actually been promoted well, given a better night and time slot and not been pre-empted over and over again for baseball (and when they did this, they didn't let people know it would be on later - like at midnight!). I'm thinking this author doesn't know the history of the show and that it has been a huge success in it's dvd sales and is now going to be a big screen picture.

I remember being furious when it was cancelled and I mentioned to my sister how mad I was and she never even knew about the show. I've run into that a lot with people who now love it but didn't know it was around when it was on Fox.
Not only was Firefly stuck on Friday night and barely promoted, but Fox didn't even air it in the correct order.
Huh. His intentions are good, but the columnist is a bit irritating, no? But that's besides the point...

I've been looking forward to Point Pleasant for some time, so here's hoping it's good. I'm a little worried, as the internet seems oddly silent about the show as far as advance hype goes, but the commercials are intriguing and I'm sure Marti will turn out something good.

Other random reactions: yeah, Fox should be hyping the heck out of Arrested Development and I'm angy, and hey, 24 is not stupid!
I want to wish Point Pleasant all the best, it sounds really cool, but, I realised today it clashes with Alias, and I so want that show to keep going, hopefully there'll be a happy medium.

The point pleasant website seems quite good, not sure if it's been linked here so I won't put it on the main page, it's here.

I'm definitely going to check out the pilot, but while I don't want it to destroy Alias in the ratings every week, I really don't want to get into another Fox mid-season show only to have it taken away after 4 episodes like I did last year.
Point Pleasant will only be in that time slot for one night, Ghost Spike. The next night it moves to its real time slot Thursdays at 9 p.m.
Yeah, Thursdays at nine. Because we all know that's where you put shows if you want them to have a chance...
Ah, thanks for that eddy, I can wish Point Pleasant all the best now.

Let's hope it fares well in that slot, but wasn't that where Tru Calling and Wonderfalls both spent some time during their short lives.
Firefly would have worked, especially with the already established fanbase of Mr. Joss Whedon. He made a complex, character driven story which is what catapults his shows. I was really starting to get into Firefly. Obviously a lot of other people were too with the DVD sales
I emailed Tim Goodman about his line: " We may disagree on some shows -- come on, there's no way "Firefly" was going to work -- but I like your instincts. "

I said "That must be why it's spawned a big budget motion picture, which according to many surveys is on the list of the 10 most anticipated movies of 2005. It didn't work."

I actually got a reply within a minute or two of sending my email. This is what Goodman said:

"It doesn't matter if it's a feature film. It failed as a TV series. That's just a fact. - Tim"

Then I think he blocked my emails.
Heh. Guess that confirms my "a bit irritating" suspicions.
Nebula1400 - welcome to Whedonesque. I can see Tim Goodman's point though - the failed series point, not the "not going to work" one. Fox lost on Firefly at the time and may or may not ever get money back, even with DVD sales etc. From their limited perspective, Firefly=loss. Now whether that loss was justified/avoidable/caused by bad decisions etc is, for them, irrelevant. The bottom line is the bottom line for these guys: Firefly=loss is their measure of the series. If you have a look at the Serenity RPG thread, you will see reference to that by the game designers (I think it's them, anyway). Frustrating but in the end, as much as we celebrate and support Firefly, I think Fox will always have that point of view.
Why are those people so mean?

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