The first shot has been fired, and it’s come from Fox. No, I’m not talking about politics; I’m talking about the end-of-season cancellations. Just because a show has made it past its first – or third, or fifth – season and been renewed in the past doesn’t mean its guaranteed another, but a freshman show is certainly most in danger of being cancelled. Last in, first out, as they say.
The first one to go? Terra Nova. Now, granted, I never did get around to watching an episode – and maybe that right there tells us why it was cancelled. But it’s a reminder that sci-fi and fantasy shows, with their larger budgets, tend to be judged even more harshly. For me, it’s also a reminder that most of the shows I like from this season are likely contenders for the chopping block.
So here are a few that I feel should go, some that should stay, and some that I’d like to see stick around even if they don’t quite deserve it – yet.
Wish it to the cornfield
The Finder – So Fox had a hit with Bones, which was based on a book series by Kathy Reichs. They decide they need more of the same, so they choose a different series by a different author – and then try to capitalize on Bones by calling it a “spin-off.” They introduce a brand-new character for one episode of Bones so that the shows can be “connected.” While generally I love series based on mystery novels, but this one just rubs me the wrong way. The quirky characters/location/eccentric lead? It all feels like it’s been done before. In a Carl Hiaasen novel. Or on USA. Save the prime-time real estate for something else.
The X-Factor – Though I’m not a fan of The Finder, at least it’s an actual fictional television show. Fox sacrifices far too much of its evening hours to the monopoly of American Idol. Now, for the off-season, we’ve been given X-Factor. It had its shot to reinvent the talent show for American audiences, and it failed. Move along.
Should get a callback
Grimm – This one started out a bit of an underdog, but it’s quickly earned a place in my heart. As Monroe, Silas Weir Mitchell keeps the show hilarious and adds some authenticity to the universe at the same time, without being a blatant scene-stealer. Really, the entire cast brings something to the table, but always in an understated manner. This may be the most underrated show of the season, in terms of entertainment.
Alcatraz – Well, it was a mid-season replacement, and it’s not the second coming of LOST, but it’s developed into a fun, solid show. Alcatraz is finally beginning to feel comfortable in its niche – it’s shaking loose the procedural constraints of the first few episodes, but we’re still meeting a new member of the ’63′s’ each week, and the mythology is finally getting rolling. Here’s hoping it gets to stick around now that it’s hitting its stride!
We all need guilty pleasures
The Secret Circle – I had super-high hopes that this show would be the next Vampire Diaries (which I actually don’t watch) in popularity, but it’s been a bit uneven. Should it get renewed for a second season, the writers need to step up their game, balance out the plot so the main character doesn’t seem like such a Mary Sue, and let the Circle actually do magic! That being said, the potential is there. As Faye, Phoebe Tonkin keeps me laughing, and there were some great scenes in recent episodes. Pretty much any time there’s some “down time” in the plot where the various cast members can play off one another, it’s a good thing. I look forward to watching it each week, so I hope it gets the chance to grow and find its footing.
Pan Am – Man, this one really is a guilty pleasure. It’s probably on the “most likely to get cancelled” list, but I hope it gets another shot regardless. Though Christina Ricci and Kate Garner were probably considered the main draws, it’s actually “supporting” actors Margot Robbie, Michael Mosley and especially Karine Vanassi who kept me watching ’til the end. It’s certainly no Mad Men, but if it gets a second shot, or finds a home elsewhere like USA, I’ll keep watching it – with the blinds closed and a bowl of ice cream.
What about you? What shows should go, and what would you like to see stay (whether it deserves it or not)? Leave me a comment below!