Where are my ‘Drive’ episodes? A request to networks

July 11, 2007

Before I went on vacation, I diligently set my DVR to tape the long-awaited final two episodes of the short-lived series Drive on Fox on July 4th.  When I came home on Monday, I was more than a little disappointed.  Why do these networks keep screwing with us?

I’ve made it very clear in earlier posts that I don’t think Fox gave Drive a decent shot at finding an audience after only four episodes so I won’t dwell too much on that fact.  In fact, I think Fox has a history of canceling shows with potential before they’ve found a footing.  And what for?  Another dumb reality show.

However, I was mildly sated by the fact that I would get to watch the last two taped episodes, even if I had to wait until July.  But alas, Independence Day has come and gone and I’m no closer to seeing the missing two episode of Drive.

And to add insult to injury, the network has already canceled the second date (July 13th) that it planned to air these episodes.  At this point I’ve given up hope that I’ll ever see those episodes (unless they finally put them up on the Internet).  By the way, for those of you who want to know more about what happens in those last episodes of Drive, check out this DriveFans interview.

As for me, I’ve lost all faith in Fox and, with the exception of House and Bones, will be very leery of adding any more Fox shows to my watch list.

But Fox isn’t the only network messing with its viewers.  After canceling the serial drama Nine in November after just seven episodes, ABC has decided to show the six unaired episodes on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. starting August 1.

Okay, I’ll admit this one wasn’t a great series and I had no silly notions of it making it past a single season.  Still in for a penny, in for a pound.  I still got hooked on the series and wanted closure, so when ABC abruptly canceled it last fall I was peeved.

Now nine months later, they want to bring it back!  I can’t even remember all the characters names, let alone the story line.  If that’s not bad enough, this August stint of episodes still won’t provide resolution for fans because when the 13th episode was filmed, producers didn’t know that the series would be canceled so they had no chance to wrap up storylines. 

At this rate, ABC is giving me no reason to tune in in August.  Why would I?  Just to be bummed out again when I still have no idea what went on in the bank.  ABC, you can count me out.

Now comes my time to plead with the networks.  I have five little requests.

  1. Please give a good, quality show with potential a chance to find an audience before deciding to axe it.  Yes, that means more than five or six episodes.  If we like a show, we will spread the word.  Just give us a chance. 
  2. Show the episodes in order.  You can’t build an audience if the storyline jumps around because the episodes are shown out of order.  We need to be able to follow a show to enjoy it.
  3. Please if you are going to cancel a show, especially a serial one, give the producers a chance wrap up the storylines.
  4. If you are going to cancel a show, especially one with a fan base — even a small one, please show all the filmed episodes.  You’ve already spent the money to produce the episode, go ahead and air it.
  5. Show the final episodes immediately, please.  Do not insult us by making us wait months to see a few missing episodes.  If you don’t want to use your precious air time, put the episodes up on the Internet.

I don’t think that my requests are that much to ask.  But I can tell you this; there are a lot more options out there than there used to be.  If networks don’t start respecting their audiences, I, for one, will be taking a lot more advantage of these choices.


20 Freshman Shows that Deserved a Chance to Wrap Up their Stories

May 31, 2007

As I look at all the new series scheduled for the 2007-08 television schedule, I’m a little hesitant to get excited about any of them.  The networks seem less willing to give a new show a chance to find an audience before giving it the axe.  I’m still very bitter over the cancellation of Drive, can you tell?

Some shows are destined for failure even before they start despite a good premise or a captivating storyline because the networks put them in a lousy time slot, keep moving their time slot or run the episodes out of order.  Here are 20 series that never got a chance to wrap up their storylines before getting axed.  Some never even got the chance to finish their freshman season. 

  1. Firefly
  2. American Gothic
  3. Lone Gunman
  4. Harsh Realm
  5. Drive
  6. Reunion
  7. Nine
  8. Threshold
  9. Strange Luck
  10. John Doe
  11. Boomtown
  12. Freaks & Geeks
  13. Karen Cisco
  14. Touching Evil
  15. Jake 2.0
  16. Miss Match
  17. Keen Eddie
  18. Invasion
  19. Eyes
  20. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (I realize they are currently showing the last of the taped episodes, but I’m not convinced a real ending is in store.)

I’m not saying that all these series deserved a second season (most did), but at least their fans deserved a chance to see closure to these stories. 

The problem with single season shows is that if you didn’t see the show the first time, you have no idea what I’m talking about.  You won’t find these shows in reruns and, in most cases, you won’t find them on DVD.  For me, that’s the case with Jericho.  I understand that several are upset about its cancellation; however, I couldn’t include it on my list since I never saw it.

What shows would you have on your list?

A Glimmer of Satisfaction for ‘Drive’ Fans

May 9, 2007

Disappointed Drive fans everywhere get a slight reprieve after the new Fox show was canceled after four episodes.  The final two unaired episodes will air on July 4th.

While I’m glad that we get to see these two episodes, I think Fox added insult to injury with this move.  Not only did it cancel the series after a mere four episodes, but now it’s going to air the last two episodes on one of the few days of the year when nobody’s watching TV.

Of course, we won’t get any closure with these episodes — who expects to wrap up a series after just six episodes?  But I’ll take anything I can get at this point in time.  I’ll be setting my DVR for July 4th.

Fox’s ‘Drive’ already out of gas

April 26, 2007

While watching Wednesday’s American Idol, I noticed a promo for next Monday’s 24 said it would be preceded by a special showing of House.  What?  That 8 p.m. Monday slot is reserved for Fox’s newest show, Drive.  This announcement can’t be right.  But a visit to tvguide.com confirms my fear  — Drive has been canceled.

Apparently the show has been canceled after just three episodes due to ratings.  How can the network decide on a show after three episodes.  Give us a chance to get to know the characters, to decide we like the show and to tell our friends. 

Why bother airing a show if you aren’t really going to give it a chance?  No wonder no one is tuning in to new shows.  It’s not worth our time if the networks won’t even given them a real chance.

The only small satisfaction is that it is rumored that you can see the two unaired episodes in May on Friday nights.

I was really looking forward to Nathan Fillion finally finding a series to showcase his talents after a brief stint on Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s final season and the lead on the short-lived cult favorite Firefly.

C’est la vie.

‘Drive’ full of intrigue, fast cars and interesting characters

April 17, 2007

The new Fox series Drive has captured my attention with its intriguing storyline.  The fast cars and good-looking cast don’t hurt either.

I originally tuned into the premier because of Nathan Fillion.  A big fan of Fillion from his Firefly and Buffy the Vampire days, I was glad to see him back in prime time.  

Drive’s Alex Tully (Nathan Fillion) and Corinna Wiles (Kristin Lehman). PhotoI wasn’t sure how Fox was going to pull off the concept of a secret, illegal cross-country race in a television show.  We’ve seen it done on the big screen with CannonBall Run and, it’s predecessor, Gumball Rally.  But how do you keep the story interesting week after week?

Unlike the movies where comedy was the driving force, Drive is founded in intrigue.  While the purse is surely a draw for many of the competitors as it was in the films, we are slowly learning that it’s not the only reason many of the drivers entered the race.  In fact, some were forced to participate, like Nathan Fillion’s character Alex Tully, whose wife (played by Amy Acker of Angel) was kidnapped by the mysterious people behind the race.

This intrigue has me hooked.  I’m fascinated about each of the character’s motivation for entering the race and eager to learn more about their backstories, particularly Tully’s.  There’s definitely more to this guy that we’ve seen so far — a shady past, perhaps?  Even more so, who are the people behind this race?  Why are they doing it?  And who else works for them?

I will admit that I was expecting to see a showcase of hot, muscle cars and European sports cars — not the minivans, sedans and old pickups we saw in the two-hour premier on Sunday.  But if Monday was any indication, maybe more of our contestants will be trading up like Tully did.  Tully’s new ride, the black charger, is sweet (although Supernatural’s black impala is still my favorite car on television today).

So fasten your seatbelt and stay tuned because Drive is going to be one remarkable ride.

(photo courtesy of imdb.com)