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New Escapist Column! On the Strange Logic of Netflix’s Cancellations…

I published a new piece at The Escapist today. With Netflix announcing a number of major cancellations recently – from GLOW to Altered Carbon – it seemed like an interesting topic to discuss and explore.

Netflix operates a bit more opaquely than more conventional television broadcasters, and so its internal logic is a little rougher around the edges. However, the logic of cancellation has become a little clearer over time, as the streamer has drawn the shutter down on more and more of its shows. Indeed, with the benefit of the growing dataset, it appears that the underlying logic of cancellation for the streaming service is not radically different from that of television – even if the underlying math is a little more unusual.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Escapist Column! “Titans” as a Meditation on Found Family…

It’s another In the Frame column at Escapist Magazine.

This time taking a look at Titans, the new live action adaptation of Teen Titans that formed one of the cornerstones of Warner Brothers’ DC streaming service. The series focuses on a bunch of teenage sidekicks who find themselves forced to work together for the greater good, particularly focused on Dick Grayson who was the former Robin. The series explores themes of trauma and found family, but is particularly interesting for its rejection of conventional (or even conventionally coded) family units.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

New Podcast! The Time is Now – Season 1, Episode 14 (“The Thin White Line”)

As ever, a delight to stop by The Time is Now to talk about Millennium, this week with the estimable Christopher Knowles.

This week, I got to show how deep my love was for The Thin White Line, the last episode of the first season to be penned by James Wong and Glen Morgan. As with Force Majeure, this is one of my favourite episodes of the first season. It is interesting, because it’s also one of the last “serial killer of the week” stories in the season. It is also among the very best of that subgenre, and deals thematically with ideas that the show will explore in the season ahead.

This was a fun, broad discussion. As ever, you can listen to the episode here, subscribe to the podcast here, or click the link below.

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Verdict on V: Needs More Lizards

Well, the first four episodes of V have aired now. It’ll be 2010 (March, I believe) before we see any further action on that front. It seems like a very long break if the show wants to retain its audience (we’re talking the bones of four/five months – a third of a year), but it probably makes sense since ABC decided to clean house behind the scenes. And – looking back over the first four episodes, it seems like a necessary decision. Despite the Obama-centric publicity which followed the first episode, I don’t think I’m alone in being a little bit disappointed with the initial run. Being honest, there are a whole rake of problems with the episodes that have aired, but these are typified by one thing that everyone I’ve been talking to over the past few weeks has observed: it needs more lizards.

I always found Diana oddly a-peeling

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Non-Review Review: X-Files – I Want to Believe

The title just about says it all. I want to believe in The X-Files. I want to believe in Mulder and Scully. I want to believe in Chris Carter. But I’m looking for proof. Proof that the franchise that held the entire world’s attention for a few minutes in the mid- to late-nineties still has some life in it. Proof that a ridiculous complicated and illogical and poorly written final few seasons on the air had not sucked the marrow entirely from the bones of a once unique pop cultural entity. So, what does the movie give me? Not concrete proof, but a little hint of faith. The film is not as bad as the final two years of the show. That’s the good news. The bad news is that it isn’t as good as the first five.

"X" doesn't mark the spot...

"X" doesn't mark the spot...

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