Monday, May 18, 2009

TV Cancellation News: The Sarah Connor Chronicles gets terminated

Bad news for Terminator fans: It looks like FOX's Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles has officially been canceled (at least according to Entertainment Weekly's Michael Ausiello). It seems a bit premature, considering the fact that Terminator: Salvation will be out later this week. But even though I was a fan of the series, I will admit that it had a tendency to be fairly inconsistent -- maybe things would have been different if we'd had more episodes like the last season finale.
Should FOX executives be crucified for this move? As much as it pains me to say it, I don't think so. I would have loved to see Terminator continue for another season, and some are speculating that it could in the form of DVD movies. However, let's not forget that the show did get another chance after a first season hampered by an industry-wide writers' strike. This was not another situation (a la Firefly) where the show's episodes were consistently aired out of order. Maybe it has been prematurely canceled -- this is something we may never know. But the fact remains: the show got two seasons, which is more than most well-liked, but poorly-rated shows tend to get.

Another thing I've noticed is that many fans are railing against Dollhouse as if that show really had anything to do with Terminator's cancellation. And I don't get it, even though I was a Terminator fan first and didn't even like Dollhouse much until its sixth episode. Though Dollhouse has a polarizing effect on viewers, and though many say its Whedon's weakest show, it does happen to have fans. And it's still a triumph for a poorly-rated science fiction show to be saved for at least one more season.

For all you know, Dollhouse will ultimately yield a poor profit for FOX (I'm sure they'll be watching those DVD sales this summer) and wind up getting canceled as well. So let's not turn this into a war. As a creative person, I'm extremely disappointed to hear about Terminator's cancellation, and I genuinely sympathize with the show's actors and production team. But even though we hate to admit it, TV is ultimately a business. And since this is not a colossally cruel cancellation of Firefly proportions, we can't be surprised (though we can still be disappointed) by this news.

[Entertainment Weekly]

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