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I Wonder Why?11:41 PM -- Mon October 10, 2005

We just finished seeing the entire series of Wonderfalls via Netflix. It's like 13 or 14 episodes, only 4 of which actually aired. Another in the long and distinguished line of series that the networks (usually Fox) didn't "get" and couldn't be bothered to promote or pursue, but which are in fact much better than the shows that continue on year after year. Or maybe they didn't get ratings for real reasons, I don't know. Wonderfalls is cool, and I recommend it on two grounds - for one, it's a very good TV show. But better yet, the episodes of it that were made work together perfectly, like a miniseries. If you watch the whole set, you'll be left probably wanting more of course, but you'll also feel that a complete story was told. So I recommend it on that basis. Watch it for what it is and enjoy, and don't worry about what isn't there, because it's complete as it is. Wish the same could be said for Firefly! Sigh. Cut down in their prime...

But there is a certain goodness to that. Some series just go on too long and eventually jump the shark, and you hope for them to be put out of their misery. I think it's better to be left wanting more than to watch the sad decline and wacky new sidekicks and babies. Firefly was definitely not ready to be chopped, but I'm quite happy with what I got from Wonderfalls. It is all it needed to be. And then the creators of those shows, if they cut them off (with a reasonably satisfying conclusion, not some cliffhanger) in their prime, can then go on to make something different that will be equally compelling, rather than beating the same dead horse into glue. It won't always capture that same magic, but neither will the first series if it keeps dragging on. Hey, I'm just gonna come out and say it... The Simpsons should have ended 5 years ago when they were amazing! Futurama was the new and wonderful project from that group, and it indeed was fresh and great (and had a whole different take on comedy, more heartfelt and moral, and more ridiculous at the same time). Sigh, Futurama... another one abused to death by Fox. When will they learn?

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