The last couple of years have brought us drama series with brilliant and innovative concepts that unfortunately run out of gas too soon. The best example of them being 24, a brilliant ground breaking thriller that had everyone glued to their seats, but later on succumbed to the same ancient Hollywood rule the Matrix sequels suffered from: When in doubt, do everything BIGGER and LOUDER.
The problem is that a brilliant concept is not enough. Because once people get passed the concept, they need something else to keep them watching, something much more basic. Characters you can relate to. Humanity. Or at least some god damned sense of suspension of disbelief. Since 24 has cardboard black & white characters, it had to continue to rely on the concept, and keep making the concept more and more extreme until it becomes preposterous at some point.
The same thing happened to Prison Break. The entire first season was like an extended version of a movie with a genius concept. The conviction of Michael Scofield's character was extraordinary. The amount of thought put into the details of his plan (Both by Scofield and by the writers) was exceptional. All the characters were reliable and contributed their part to the plot. But everybody knew that once they broke out of that prison, everything would change, for the worst. The second season was like a really crappy sequel. It really should be called Prison Break Reloaded. Yes, it's that kind of manure. And much like Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen, I hate manure. Everything was blown out of proportion, and suddenly characters that were there to advance the plot, became liabilities. Who the hell cares what happens to that bitch C-Note, or the prison guards, or even Sucre? And how the hell is T-bag even still alive? They cut off his fucking hand, for Moses' sake. He was bleeding for hours without medical care. And How come Geary, a trained prison guard, couldn't handle a fucking handless gimp? You have TWO hands, he has ONE. The fact that he's a psycho killer doesn't change the fact that you're not a 13 year old girl.
I could go on for hours about the inconsistencies of this show, but I won't. It's frustrating when an excellent show goes bad. But what can one do? You don't cancel a series after one season because it's GOOD. If a show is popular, it's in everybody's interest to keep it running as much as it can. Or is it?
Lost is experiencing the same difficulties. The bombastic concept is no longer the center of attention. Fortunately in Lost's case, they actually created a whole stack of interesting characters you can identify with and even love, which is why you're still compelled to watch even though there's always that feeling at the back of your head telling you it's not really as good as it used to be.
After watching five episodes of Heroes, I fear it's also on its path to becoming an enormous shadow of itself. Your beloved characters are still there, but the thrill is not the same thrill. The plot thickens too much, and characters start to act unreasonably, as seen in the Bennet family's very loose definition of the concepts of "Laying low" and "No more secrets". So much for learning from your mistakes. It's still not as ridiculous as Prison Break or 24, but oh yeah, it's getting there. I mean, it is a show about super heroes. There's no way to go but to the extreme.
On a brighter note, re-makes! I recently found out that they've actually made a TV remake of FLASH-GORDON! That's right! I'm sure it sucks, but I'm not even gonna bother checking. There are only so many hours a day. On the other hand, I've been watching the remake of The Bionic Woman, and I have to say, I know that this is trash, but it's fun trash. It started off kinda obscure, with a weird choice of Battlestar Galactica's Starbuck as the "Evil Bionic Woman", but it's slowly settling down as an obvious Nikita rip off with all the unclear conspiracies and politics between made up government agencies. But on top of it all, that Michelle Ryan is hot in ways that I can't even describe. It almost makes up for not having the slow motion running effect.
Hmmm… I completely forgot what I was talking about. Oh well. Here's a picture.