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i am not a stuffed tiger.

cruel world

O.K., America, this is quite serious:
"Arrested Development" may have finally played its last get out of jail free card. Fox has cut back its episode order on one of TV's most critically praised shows to just 13 segs, down from 22. Skein, from 20th Century Fox TV and creator Mitch Hurwitz, has also been pulled from the schedule for the rest of the month, another sign that the network may have finally given up on trying to bring an audience to the show. [variety]
This implies that Fox tried to bring an audience to the show.

Really, they should just show the mole vs. jetpack clip over and over again until ratings improve. The funny thing is that the second season is ranked #24 on Amazon's DVD sales page [#]; so there must be some people interested in it.



At the very least, they should just finish making a full season and hope to make up the costs with third season DVD sales. It might be a brave new episodic comedy distribution model.

Comments

Firefly anyone?

Under the current Fox strategy, the Simpsons wouldn't have made it past year 1. Perhaps another installment of Temptation Island to fill the slot?

Re: Firefly anyone?

on one hand, they did give it approximately three seasons. But three badly promoted seasons with multiple timeslots and large gaps in the schedule.

Re: Firefly anyone?

the most r-e-t-a-r-d-e-d part of this is that they're going to put a re-run of Prison Break in the Arrested Development spot. WTF?
AIGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/TV/11/11/television.shows.reut/index.html
I'm still clinging to the it's not officially cancelled mindset. See Danny's comments, below.
They did this last year during sweeps, remember? Though, the episode cut was an understandable 4 episodes, not 9. This was done so that the show wouldn't get killed because of the bad numbers (apparently the execs only pay attention at sweeps), and enabled them to just sneak the show back into the lineup after sweeps.

It still has not been announced as cancelled oficially, though. If they wanted to cancel it outright they would do so, and just put the unaired episodes on DVD.

I don't understand FOX. Why spend so much money on high quality shows and then bury them in a linup or constantly pre-empt or skip airings? I still can't believe they are scratching their heads over this. I thought after the 'Family Guy' fiasco that it would be a mistake they won't make again.

If you recall, Family Guy was cancelled (twice) because of low viewer numbers vs cost per episode (same thing as Futurama and AD). They couldn't figure out why the show was so "popular" while the numbers were so bad, until critics and fans pointed out (after the DVDs broke records) that while they love the show, they gave up on watching it regularly on FOX because they couldnt' find it reliably each week. Most people now just download the episodes or buy the DVDs, because they are tired of tuning in and being dissapointed when the lineup is different every week.

I thought the point of having "powerhouse" shows was to put them in a steady lineup so that fans would be drawn in at the same time every week, and (hopefully) keep watching. It kind of defeats that point if the viewer tunes in, gets confused, and turns the TV off.

HBO did the same thing to Bob and David, and it lead (along with burnout and stress) to the show ending before its time. The show was critically and publicly acclaimed, but HBO kept putting it on later and later at night and moved it to a weeknight spot. Then HBO got mad that the numbers were good when the show was on at like 11pm on weekends but bad when it was on at 3am on weeknights and started putting pressure on the show.

I just don't get it!

To work around this issue, I have just cancelled my cable (haven't had it for a few years) and I just buy the season DVDs as they come out.
I like your theory about hiding the show from sweeps to save it. Believing that will really help with my denial.

I totally agree with your confusion about FOX's treatment of the show. I can't remember seeing an advertisement for it or hearing about any of the cast members being on talk shows to promote it.

With all of the people downloading, watching shows on TiVo, or waiting for DVD, it really seems like there should be a better measure of a show's success than what 1,000 Nielsen families are watching for a few weeks a year.
Oh, and:

Michael: "They cut back our housing order from 24 to 18 houses"
Geoarge, Sr: "Those BASTARDS!"

(paraphrased from memory)
honestly, I'm not sure that I'd see a problem with them just ordering short season(s) every year. It worked for the Office, but maybe it wouldn't be enough money to keep the cast interested in sticking around from year to year?
That is really disappointing. Frankly I thikn this season is even funnier than the first (and both 1 and 3 are funnier than 2). It seemed like, after the castration of last season's shows, the writers had regained their confidence and were as witty and irreverant as ever. I'm in love with the last couple of episodes.

And I agree that it just doesn't make sense that the DVDs could sell so well, but (apparently) no one is watching it.
yeah. it seems like this season they're really going for the big laughs instead of the more subtle stuff from season 2.

I think that some of the the George Sr./Uncle Oscar stuff from Season 2 sort of upset the balance of the series. Having this "Surrogate"/house arrest thing is not quite as good as the scenes with George Sr. in jail, but it's an improvement.
Every time people talk about AD around the water cooler here at work, I want to start singing "Mister Wendelllllll" or at least "I challenge you to a game of horseshoes. A game of horseshoes!!"
That's some fucking bullshit right there. It's the old problem of using shows to make money (US) vs making money to make shows (UK).