The perfect is the enemy of the good - Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles replaced by bromidic sitcom

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Back in April I made a heartfelt plea for support for Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, a show that deserved a third season but never got it. At the time it was difficult to find online support for the show - posts to sites like Reddit (among others) appealing for a concentrated effort to get the show a third season were often met with comments along the lines of "Yeah, but John Connor isn't as tough as I had hoped" or "Those three episodes about Sarah Connor's mental state were boring so no support from me" or "Not enough action" or "I don't like the actor that plays Weaver" or a whole multitude of whiny excuses to not back the show for a third season. As a result the campaign to get the show a third season was mostly limited to fans, and eventually the show was cancelled. The world wept. Okay, fans wept. But now that we know what the show has been replaced with it's time for you to weep too.

During the latter part of the second season, the show was broadcast at 8 pm on Fridays, followed by Dollhouse at 9 pm. Dollhouse was renewed for this season, and now that September has come around I thought I would take a look at the show that has replaced Terminator: TSCC. Well...there is a sample of the show on YouTube, but it's not pretty. Watching the video may ruin your day, so don't say I didn't warn you. First of all, here's a scene from Terminator: TSCC as a reminder of what the show was about.

Okay, now that we remember what the show was like, here's the show that replaced it.

That's right - Terminator: TSCC has been replaced with a steaming pile of crap sitcom called Brothers, about a former NFL star that decides to return home and straighten out his life. If you were one of the people that failed to support Terminator: TSCC for one of the lame reasons given above, this is your doing.

Thanks to you, the story about the continued evolution of John Henry's AI has been replaced with "Hey momma!" (door closes on brother in wheelchair, cue canned laughter) -- ROTFL he got hit with a door d00dz major lulz!

Thanks to you, a show that taught people about the concept of the Singularity has been replaced with "I'm in the best shape of my life! Come on, hit me!" "Sucka!" -- That's gotta hurt! #epicfail

Thanks to you, a show with one of the most complex and intricate storylines seen in a show over the past few years has been replaced with "What you watching, pop?" "Championship game against the Packers. Man, you really stunk the place up! Worst part is, you got outrun by a white quarterback!" (cue canned laughter) -- Suhweeeeet burn!

Thanks to the myriad excuses conjured up for not giving Terminator their full support, this is what has replaced it this year. Think about that. This is exactly where Voltaire's comment about "the perfect is the enemy of the good" comes from.

What's that you say? Terminator brought it upon themselves for the slow episodes during the middle of the second season? I thought you'd bring that up. Here, let me show you another couple of slow episodes from the second season of another show we all know, and then we'll decide whether a few lame episodes during a show's second season really results in it deserving to be cancelled.

The Dauphin - Wesley Crusher falls for a mysterious young girl. Let's see how that one ended. Ah yes, "Worf escorts Anya to another transporter room to return Anya to her home. Salia thinks she will never see Wesley again, but he hurries to the transporter room to say goodbye and give her a last taste of chocolate mousse. She reverts back into her natural form to beam down through the planet's thick atmosphere, and Wesley is amazed at how beautiful she is."

The Royale - The crew is trapped in an alien casino. Oh no! And there's a gambler named Tex!

Manhunt - Picard is subject to Lwaxana's amorous advances. Will he escape? Or will her amorous advances continue?

The Child - Troi is impregnated by pixie dust! Tune in to learn more about Betazoid birth control issues!

Shades of Gray - why film an entirely new episode when you can just film five minutes and fill the rest with clips?

Just like Terminator: TSCC, Season 2 was a bit sketchy but with a lot of good episodes along with it (The Measure of a Man, Q Who, Peak Performance...). And as we know, Star Trek: TNG went on to become one of the greatest sci-fi shows of all time. Imagine if Star Trek: TNG had been on the verge of cancellation and its fans failed to support it because of lame Episode X or Episode Y. Maybe it would have been replaced by a cheap imitation of Family Ties instead, and we would remember Star Trek: TNG as being that unsuccessful spinoff of Star Trek that just wasn't all that good, and what a tragedy that would have been.

Here's the lesson learned: if you like the concept of a show, enjoy somewhere around half the episodes, and think that it has the potential to become even greater, then support it 100%. Do not waver, do not support it only if the plot happens to turn out exactly the way you wanted, do not withdraw your support because Character Y isn't developing as fast as you wanted. Because the vast majority of shows on TV are crap, and that's what the show you aren't giving your full support to is likely to be replaced with...and has been. Thanks for not getting behind Terminator: TSCC when it counted, and enjoy your new sitcom.

Edit: wow, perfect timing for this article from the Onion. September 25th is exactly when this show is slated to begin.


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