TV last night was Monday's episode of Oz, as I was in the mood (lifer, no chance of parole) and it was pretty good. As I couldn't bear to watch any cop show set in NY, which is pretty much all of them, I switched over to Dark Angel, which I like anyways. It was the one where Zack comes back all Terminator (well, I suppose JC can rip off himself) and then gets packed off, never to be spoken of again - this is what the sidelining of Conor reminded me of. I knew I'd seen it before.
I really like Dark Angel. Great ideas. It never really hit its potentional and blossumed, you know, the way some episodes of Buffy or Angel were just magic (and it all came together when Mom sang along), and DA seemed to veer off sideways towards the end, but I liked it. At least some of the cast still have jobs.
Speaking of cancelled Angels, dark or otherwise, a recent comment in protest by SFX caught my eye, along the lines of what were they going to do now that Angel and Buffy were cancelled as some of them had families. Because this binge for cheap, crappy reality shows has led to a drought of interesting shows, the shows I like to watch, that we haven't seen in over twenty years.
It's not just the fact that I'm going to be forced to read a book, get a life or play dvds in the evenings, there's a whole infrastructure out there that depends on cult telly. There are boards, lists, communities, cons, magazines and the like which may well fold and vanish if people start to drift away.
There's one club here that charges people admission to attend screenings of the latest US shows. So what are they gonna do? I hear they're starting to show old stuff that The Kids (tm) might not have seen, but are The Kids (tm) willing to sit through bad FX and dodgy acting without the benefit of childhood nostalgia goggles? I think not if the sniping from my younger friends' ljs is anything to go by. And I'd rather enjoy old telly on my own comfy fucouch than those hideously hard auditorium chairs, anyway (though nothing can beat the calvanist cruelty of that theatrette they used to use at Sydney uni).
What are the magazines going to do? Will posters of Blake sell as well as Angel? Possibly not. They'll have to rely on all the genre films coming out (no bad thing). Funny how so many films are genre, but tv, not so much now. Obviously there's an audience. TPTB cite the expense of a weekly genre series. Is it our fault? Do we really demand expensive crappy SF over story and character? And why can't producers take a leaf from those old BW films and only hint at FX anyway, or recycle it, use the old smoke mirrors and shadows to get more bang for their buck? As in 'this monster is so hideous...ly expensive we dare not look at it'. There was a good reason vamps only ever came out at night - to hide the dodgy makeup :D
So, net groups and the like: will the diehards keep the fandoms churning away, or will they fall into disinterest, as everyone latches onto the next big thing. Assuming there is a next big thing, but we seem to be pretty good at turning to books, films, films of books, and in all genres these days. I think ljs will chug along for a while, but subject specific areas may fall into disrepair, with tumbleweeds blowing through lists until the series gets repeated on some cable channel.
As for cons, well, I think the fan run cons will survive as they churn over fandoms more often than I change my socks (cheesy grin) and I think the celeb cons will degenerate into the autograph booths that they already have.
I guess it's all a matter of evolution and survival and broadening one's horizons, being flexible and adaptable. Still, it's a bit of a bummer to have nothing to look forward to on telly next year. I shall have to crack open an evening classes catalogue. Thanks, WB, you've given me my life back, whether I want it or not - grin.