Television

04.13.08

Lost to get two-hour season finale: At one point, due to the writer's strike, the fourth season of Lost was going to be a fractured disappointment. Before us fans could even settle down for the season premiere, the writer's strike reared its ugly head and shut down production on the show, leaving only the first 8 episodes (half of the proposed season) with completed scripts. There was no time to pen a new ending, so the mini-cliffhanger at the end of episode 8 was going to have to last us until the show returned to the air (and no one quite knew when that was going to be).

But then the writer's strike came to an end, the clouds cleared, and it was announced that 5 additional episodes would be written and shot to close out the fourth season. However, due to a busy Thursday night on May 22, which included the one-hour finale of Ugly Betty and the two-hour finale of Grey's Anatomy, there simply wouldn't be a way to squeeze a two-hour finale of Lost into the schedule (this was strange, because the previous three finales of Lost were all two-hour events). But still, we were getting a 13 episode season and the ending that showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse had originally intended. Us Lost fans didn't have much to complain about.

Then more good news arrived. Apparently, a 14th episode is going to be shot that will join with the 13th episode to become a two-hour finale! Now, the May 22 schedule remains the same, so the plan is for Lost to take that night off and then return the following week (May 29) for its season ender.

So, in other words, this rules.

 

Battlestar Galactica's second season ends with a bang: I mentioned earlier that I had started watching the critically acclaimed sci-fi series Battlestar Galactica. At that time, I was halfway through season two, but now I've made my way through the entire second season and I have to say, the finale is one of the best I have ever seen. I thoroughly enjoyed the first season of the show, but found much of the second season lacking in quality. There was still lots to like, but the show lost its sense of humour, becoming dry and angry, and somewhat empty as a result. Story arcs were built up over several episodes, seemingly powering to some exciting conclusion, only to end abruptly with a whimper. The focus seemed to be primarily on the younger characters, leaving the older (and more intersting, if you ask me) characters scowling in the background. It was still smarter and more engaging than most stuff on television, but it was a step down from the previous season and not deserving of the overwhelming praise that has been heaped upon this series.

And then I watched the last three episodes and my brain nearly exploded due to the stunning narrative genius. It was as though the writers were just killing time until they could get to the good stuff. Suddenly, the show found its sense of humour again, the already great villains became even more fascinating, story arcs began to converge, the stakes were infinitely raised, and it all concluded with the very definition of a cliffhanger.

So, to anyone at all interested in this show, I now recommend it more highly than before. And if you do check it out, then don't worry when the second season begins to drag and lose focus, because trust me when I say you're in for a real treat.

 

04.04.08

The more TV I watch, the more I realize that, for me, Lost is by far the best thing out there right now. I'm not a fan of the extremely popular crime procedurals (though I do like Law & Order and its spinoffs) and I watch a handful of reality programs (and not much else), so it's not like Lost has a huge amount of competition, but still... I'm convinced that it is as good as TV gets right now. And with my two favourite shows of all time (Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Seinfeld) having ended years ago, it fills the void quite nicely.

Plus, I have started watching the critically acclaimed new version of Battlestar Galactica. The show is just about to start its fourth and final season, but I'm trying to catch up with the DVDs and am currently about halfway through season 2. It is really good, featuring smart, mature storylines, engaging, believable characters, and amazing special effects. That said, it's still nowhere near as good as Lost.