Author Topic: The 4400 and other con jobs.  (Read 2403 times)

Offline mightyjoeyoung

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The 4400 and other con jobs.
« on: January 26, 2011, 06:30:40 am »
Did anyone here see The 4400?

If so, are you as angry as I am that it bit the dust with no real conclusion?

I didn't catch the broadcasts, so I buy four box-sets of the thing, watch all in sequence, only to discover that it ends abruptly at an interesting point. The reason for this? The American Writer's Strike.

Ok, I am all in favour of Writers getting better conditions et cetera, but isn't it wrong of production companies to drop a series part way through yet still continue selling DVDs without informing the public that the series ends with no real conclusion? I know it would be a huge undertaking to finish the series, but even if they made a ten minute short in which the entire universe vanishes down a rabbit-hole at least we'd have some sense of finality.

Imagine you go to a Macdonald's, order a Big Mac Meal, pay for it, and get served just the fries and drink with no burger, you'd be asking serious questions about where the burger is. If they then say 'sorry, we decided to cancel the burgers this morning without bothering to cross it off the menu' I think you'd be livid. It's sort of an unwritten contract that when you pay for something you expect to have it in totality, not a percentage of it followed by a hearty 'f*** you' when they decide to pull the plug.

Films and TV shows are an investment we make, both in terms of cash paid for buying them to watch at home and in the time you invest watching them and keeping up with plots and characters, so why should we put up with being conned into buying something incomplete?


Offline David A. Riley

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Re: The 4400 and other con jobs.
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2011, 07:52:16 am »
I agree with you, it does seem nonsensical and a bit of a con job to put out a boxed set on a series - or serial - that ended prematurely. I enjoyed the first couple of series of The 4400, but I lost a lot of interest when things changed radically, and not for the better - a central character was killed off and another aged considerably. It seemed to lose direction and, though I have copies of the remaining episodes on disc, I've never bothered to watch them.

Unfortunately a few series have ended before they should over recent years. The Sarah Connor Chronicles was one that seemed to improve as time went by, but it was never able to recover from the audience drop off after the first less than brilliant episodes before the back story started to kick in and things became much more interesting.

That seems to be a problem with these kind of serials. They depend on the continuing support of the TV networks and if audience figures or other factors act against them, that's it.

Offline mightyjoeyoung

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Re: The 4400 and other con jobs.
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2011, 08:48:19 am »
There are scores of such series. The strike affected a lot of them, and like you say, some just get canned because of poor figures, but even so, you'd think they would tidy up the loose ends with a one-off. Nowadays I don't watch many series' on TV, except for shows on Channel Four or BBC Three, because they repeat them so often during the week that you can get to see them all even if you miss them first time around. Instead I wait for box-sets at car boots and second hand shops. Largely because I check the internet to see if it's a whole series/season before buying.

I know it seems a little 'pissy' doing that, but for me things have to be a certain way or it becomes an obsessive irritation. Not that everything has to have a distinct structure, as I like cliffhanger endings, such as the excellent example of 'The Italian Job' (Michael Caine version of course). That was a non-ending that was planned that way. Cutting a show dead part way through is to my way of thinking inexcusable.


« Last Edit: January 28, 2011, 09:36:41 am by mightyjoeyoung »