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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
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June 26 2005

Sci-fi, Fantasy and Horror Return to TV. "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," which did five seasons on The WB Network and two on UPN starting in 1997, was a critical darling but a commercial hit only by weblet standards."

interesting read on the state of genre television. Finally, we have something to watch this fall.

How can you take someone seriously when he/she states that "Buffy"'s ratings wouldn't have allowed the show to survive on NBC, CBS, ABC, or Fox? Gosh guy (or person whatever..), ever consider that ratings on the "major" networks would obviously be higher based solely on availability...??
I'm not sure if it was intended, but the structure of one of her sentences makes it sound as if "Charmed" is a 'critical darling.' Kill me now, please.
I've heard "Charmed" called many things but never a "critical darling"...not really all that bad a show, sorta like "Buffy-Lite". It was pretty obvious though, when they finally gave Charisma an episode with camera time, that she was hotter and a better actress than the Holliwell sisters combined!
Unfortunatly she is right about the rating though. Tru calling got the same ratings Angel season 5 did, but that was not good enough for Fox.

Genre shows are always a gamble. And typically do great in sundication, not so much on any network, no matter the availabilty.

Stopped watching Charmed when SD left, but it has a strong fanbase and support of the network.
If Angel was supported by Fox and if it was on their network, and they promoted it well unlike WB, I think Angel would of been a awesome hit, more then cult, it was the closest series of being almost a live action batman series in a way. Those batman references in season one of angel, in the first two episodes were there for a reason, although angel is no bruce wayne of cource, but the show could of been a bigger hit I say then the loyal audience it had on WB, Fox were silly not to use it on their network.

Same with Buffy as well, when Fox gets behind a show, they support it well, like X files.

I don't agree with comparing Tru Calling to Angel in terms of ratings, Angel was a better show, but not promoted well, plus not every area had WB network, Tru Calling was a show that became good near it's end, yence it wasn't that good consistently from the start, yet it got the same ratings some say as Angel, imagine if Angel was on fox then, would of gotten bigger ratings, unless the amercian public really are that dumb not to appreciate a great show, tru calling wasn't a great show, it could of been better and deserved a longer chance, but Angel took it's chances right from season one with quality, tru calling never really had a premise for a ongoing tv series from the beginning, must of effected audiences.

Fox should of given Fire Fly a better chance, that's what fox are guilty of, not backing new shows long enough. I felt Tru Calling had been given a better then average start by Fox LOL, considering they stop Fire fly after 14 episodes, yet they were willing to do a 2nd season of Tru Calling, even after it's problems, what was wrong with fire fly etc

[ edited by SeanValen on 2005-06-27 01:56 ]
She mentions the remake of The Night Stalker. One of my favorite memories of the seventies is Darren McGavin's performance in that show. I read on his website that the new show will include a three second shot of McGavin in the newsroom as an homage. Whoever is playing his part has some big damn shoes to fill. I suspect his feet will be sliding around inside said shoes willy-nilly.

Calledon, I couldn't agree with you more about Charisma. I just don't get Charmed. Of course I didn't get Leif Garrett or Pet Rocks either, so maybe it's just me.
I've seen most episodes of Charmed (background noise while I play on the computer at 6pm - it's on after Angel repeats and I don't change the channel). There is only one episode I really liked, and I consider it outstanding, so the show had potential, it just only tapped into it one time if you ask me. The episode was guest starring John Cho (Harold and Kumar, and in Kitchen Confidential this fall), he died recently because a gangster killed him to fake his own death, and the spirit of death was trying to take him in punishment in the gangsters place, while Phoebe protected him.

And I hate to say it, but I have seen the pilot episode of the show Supernatural, mentioned in the article. And it was really good. I wanted to hate it, because it should have been Season 6 of Angel, and it was wrong of them to promote it as an Angel substitute(salt in the wound). But I loved it, thoroughly entertained the whole thing. I knew I liked Jared Padalecki (Dean from Gilmore Girls) and I really thought he was going to be the only one of the stars I liked, as I couldn’t stand Jensen Ackles (Lana’s bf Jason in Smallville) in Smallville, but I guess he was bad in it due to a bad script, as he was really good in this. Don't know if it will keep being as good after the pilot, but the pilot was excellent, even had some great music in it.

[ edited by Odysseus on 2005-06-27 03:06 ]
I don't know how they're going to make 'Fathom' a series... it sounds even more limited than 'Lost'.

I do, however, think 'Invasion' and 'The Night Stalker' (mostly only because of it's cast) have potential.

I need a smart genre series on air! Without Angel or Carnivale... I am lost
As much as I love Buffy and Angel... and I love Buffy and Angel, they would have withered and died on one of the major networks. No matter how much promotion, how much network backing, how much anything. They would have withered and died. Unfortunately, genre shows tend to do better on the smaller networks that don't require MAJOR ratings to keep a show on the air. Show's like Buffy, Angel, etc. just don't appeal to everyone. Plain and simple. That's why I'm shocked Lost did as well as it did. That's probably about the closest to a genre show you'll ever get on a network. I'll be amazed if even one of those new genre shows coming up this year makes it to season two.

[ edited by CrazyMutha29 on 2005-06-27 05:00 ]
I've got to agree with Crazy on this. You just can't get the ratings out of a genre show of any type on television, unless it appeals to older, possibly married people. I do believe they need to start tracking DVR recordings as it may be telling that college kids are watching re-runs of Buffy at 9:00 AM and not Law and Order in the evening. At any rate, I think that a good science fiction show should remain in syndication or on a smaller network. Take Star Trek, for instance. It was a flop on NBC, so Gene Roddenberry chose to put the Next Generation and DS9 in syndication. It worked well.

On that note, I'll not be watching ""Threshold," with executive producers Brannon Braga ("Star Trek: Enterprise") and David Goyer ("Blade"), a sleek thriller about a team of experts dealing with an alien threat." As a fan of "good" Star Trek, I will be boycotting anything done by Brannon Braga or Rick Berman for a long time.
I've watched Charmed a few seasons, but it was too boring for me to continue to watch it. I too think that both Buffy and Angel wouldn't have worked on the bigger networks.

[ edited by Koos on 2005-06-27 10:16 ]
I really think Charmed is a horrible show. The acting is poor, the stories are unoriginal and nonsensical, even the action and effects are very cheap looking. It lacks even an ounce of the intelligence and wit that Joss's shows have.

I do think there is hope for genre television though. Look at Lost and Alias, both have a good time slot and seem to be performing very well. I think if they continue to receive critical acclaim then hopefully more people will tune in and eventually they can get the same sort of ratings as Desperate Housewives or E.R. or something. It's wishful thinking, but they're certainly good enough to deserve that sort of audience.
I really don't think "Charmed" is that bad, it's certainly not "Buffy" but neither is anything else! The acting is adequate, I actually like two of the three stars...the special effects are generally poor and the "demons" lack creativity but it's obvious the network wants to showcase three attractive women.
I hope folks are wrong about network TV, but history seems to be on their side. Nevertheless, I honestly think that either "Buffy" or "Angel" could be wildly successful on the "majors" if properly promoted. The biggest problem would be the censorship zealots...and that would be a matter of turning their ranting into increased ratings, something a network executive with a little courage could do!

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