Friday, October 9, 2009
It is a time of death.
There are many shows we could name. Hundreds, perhaps, have gone into that cold time slot. Always there is hope: perhaps this will be another X-Files; perhaps it will escape.
But, in time, it is always the same. Always the screens are black. Always there is the same silence. And then the sound of an ax falling. And then nothing.
Nine o'clock at night. You know it; it is the witching hour, when the TV executives stalk the shadows. Pity the show that stumbles into their path.
We remember. You know what we speak of: the show that transcended description, the program that rose above the limitations of mere television and stood as something... something more.
We speak of Firefly. We speak of a television show that came as close to perfection as any ever has. But it flew too high, too close to the sun. And there were those who were jealous. They could not abide something so brilliant, so they sent it into the abyss of Friday night. Nine o'clock. Eight central.
And it was gone.
We thought we would never love television again. Then Dollhouse appeared, a show overseen by Joss Whedon. In the same time slot, it was placed, sent to die, we assumed.
But Joss was wily. He knew the slot hunted the greatest shows that wandered in, so he made the first season flawed. And so it escaped, barely, to grow into a second season.
We have seen the first episodes of this new season, and we are scared. Because its flaws have been beaten, its errors corrected. Now, it has become a thing of intrigue and power.
And, like a storm, the dismal ratings are in. Already, we can hear the sounds of gnashing teeth and the sharpening of the ax. The curse is descending. Can it be stopped? Can it be undone?
We don't know. But we will hope.