After the breakout success of Lost in 2004, the following year saw three big-budget attempts at science fiction series with dense continuity. Unfortunately, it also saw those three series ultimately fail to hang on to their viewers, through internal problems or network mismanagement, and fans were left with three frustrating cliffhangers.
While they were allowed to complete more episodes than many series that followed them, I suspect this trinity of cancellations is a big reason current TV viewers are nervous about jumping on board complex shows with intricate continuity and details.
I watched Surface, Threshold and Invasion that season, but always found myself much more involved with the stories and drama unfolding on the latter of the three. Despite Katrina-related sensitivity due to its hurricane-themed opening, Invasion did an amazing job of building tension during a possible alien infiltration. V could learn a thing or two from this show.
Don't get me wrong. I like Michael Rappaport. I've seen him in dramatic and comedic roles and he's equally impressive in both, but something just didn't work at all every moment he was on screen in Monday night's season premiere of Prison Break. Maybe it's because everyone from Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell to William Fichtner and even Robert Knepper talks in this sort of subdued menacing whisper. And then here comes Rappaport all filled with bluster and his thick New York accent and that quarter smile that's always on his face.
I don't know what it was, but every time he spoke it pulled me right out of the fiction. I know Prison Break isn't anywhere close to Shakespearean in quality or writing, but one thing it's always had going for it is the quality of the cast and their performances, making you believe all the ridiculous things that happen.
If you don't know what I'm talking about and don't want to know about it, don't read beyond the spoilers warning. I suggest you also stop watching FOX until September 1 at 8 p.m. and that you stay clear from anything Prison Break related. Because, as I've said before, it's clear the network wants you to know and they are not hiding that reveal at all.
Beware: spoilers ahead!
Seriously though, while there were some good elements in their list, and I absolutely agree with their number one choice, there were some real problems and omissions as well. Wonderfalls ranked way too high and Homeboys in Outer Space didn't even make the list? Outrageous! So I've taken it upon myself to make my own list of The Top 10 Sci Fi Short-Lived Sci-Fi Shows That Weren't Pulitzer Worthy But Went Great With Popcorn. And I intentionally didn't include any of the shows on their list, because I'm acting like a spoiled brat and I don't want to play with their toys.
Along with Surface, Invasion was one of my favorite new shows that season, with each episode getting better and better. By the series finale, I was hooked. I'm still miffed that ABC didn't give it more time to flesh out the story and characters.
Incorporating a sci-fi-alien mystery, a government conspiracy, and plenty of family drama, Invasion had a built-in audience because it aired directly after another sci-fi mystery, Lost. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough to keep the series on the air.
I thoroughly enjoyed Season 1 because it was all about the ingenuity of the escape plan and Michael trying to put it in motion. In retrospect, Season 2 was entertaining even if not that good: there were too many storylines going on at the same time and all the characters were spread out over the country.
When I was given the chance to review the Season 2 DVD, I was not only looking forward the insights brought by the DVD extras but also to watching the entire series almost non-stop and see if my opinion would change on the second viewing.
The answers to some of these questions and more after the jump. Spoilers ahead!
I can't remember the last time I paid attention to hockey. In the 70s and 80s it was really big in my home, but that's when the Boston Bruins were doing really well (same with the Celtics, but that's another story). Hockey is that "other" mainstream sport, one that you really have to be a fanatic to get into (unlike baseball and football, which even casual fans watch). And some of those fanatics turn out to be celebrities, and they're keeping blogs about the NHL playoffs.
Bones star David Boreanaz, Ed's Tom Cavanaugh, Christie Brinkley, William Fichtner from Prison Break, and Eddie Cahill from Friends share their views on the Eastern Conference teams, while The Office's Brian Baumgartner, Dancing with the Star's Willa Ford, and singer Amy Grant provide analysis of the Western Conference teams. I thought that it would be all Canadian celebs, but as far as I can find out only Cavanaugh is from our northern neighbor.
[via Pop Candy]
Writer Paul Davidson always has run-ins with celebs out there in sunny California. Coffee shops, restaurants, convenience stores, supermarkets, and everywhere in between. But this time he actually worked with a celeb. Or, in this case, a future celeb.
Years ago, Davidson worked in the film department of The Jim Henson Company. Guess who worked at the same place, answering phones, delivering office mail, getting bottled water for people, etc? That's right, Prison Break's Wentworth Miller! (You can probably guess that from the title of my post). Davidson has all the details.
But Paul, come on...I actually like "Smuggler's Blues."
TV Squad Hot Topics
Most Popular Articles
From Our Partners
- 'Glee' Season 6 Premiere Photos: Everyone Comes Back to McKinley
- 10 Unforgettable Moments from 'The Amazing Race' Season 25
- Steroline: 9 Pivotal Moments of Stefan and Caroline's Relationship on 'The Vampire Diaries'
- 'Revenge' Episode 4.11 Photos: Will Grief Unite Emily and Victoria?
- 'The Amazing Race' Season Finale Recap: Which Team Wins the Race?
- More From BuddyTV
- TVLine's Performers of the Week: Laurie Metcalf and Stephen Colbert
- Ratings: Amazing Race Ticks Up With Finale, Splits 3-Way Demo Win
- Mysteries of Laura Adds Boardwalk Alum Meg Steedle as Series Regular
- Darlene Love's Final Late Show Visit: Watch Her Full Performance
- Late Late Show: Craig Ferguson Says Goodbye With Incredible Twist Ending
- More From TVLine