Arrested Development

Arrested Development is, by far, the best comedy program to come to television sets in the past five years. But why is it being canned? Because, at last, there is a show that is aimed at a high-brow audience, with intelligent scripts, talented actors and a comment on the rest of popular culture items that, obviously, the networks don’t like. A.D. is a talent packed show, and a fair few of the stars are relatively unknown. This is probably one reason why the show doesn’t have top billing on a network. However, if a show can create five, six, seven top new talents for future shows (Jason Bateman (a wider fan base), the extremely talented Michael Cera and Alia Shawkat, Tony Hale, David Cross (though already with a reputation), Will Arnett), why wouldn’t a network push it? God only knows. But that’s exactly what this show can do, and with known names in main character roles like Portia de Rosi, Jeffrey Tambor, Jessica Walter, and Ron Howard (as the narrator, but still) and the numerous real superstars that appear in the odd episodes, Charlize Theronn (Academy Award winner, almost the entirety of Season 3, just show one ad for this and everyone will be watching!), Henry Winkler (The Fonz, in nearly all of both Season 1 and 2, come on!), Zach Braff (one off, but would have drawn the Scrubs crowds), Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Seinfeld devotees do still exist you know?), Ben Stiller (Probably as much drawing power (unfortunately) as Theron), Jack Black (Funny guy + acting skills + always has a movie in release = free publicity = rating), Richard Simmons (If de Rossi wasn’t drawing anyone from the ‘gay’ demographic, this guy certainly will), Martin Short (Any explanation needed? Classic funny man!), Frankie Muniz (Malcom In The Middle was a great show (also killed in Australia by the networks), and those fans will also be drawn), and a fair few more that are famous to fans of certain shows, with proper advertising, exposure and prime time, this would have, guarantee, lock on, price favorite, have pulled massive ratings. It would have gone beyond the mere 14 episode Season 3. It would have gone on for ages. It would have been a money maker for the network, and instead, they bury it. They give it a shoddy time slot, world-wide mind you. Channel 7 over here felt the need to bang this in at smack on midnight Monday. Talk about smart management by the network.

You’d have thought that after the first round of Emmys the show won for Season 1 they would have played up its popularity. And even after Season 2 won the haul of Emmys, again, you’d have thought that the show would have been given more exposure. But no, instead they cut back on the Season 3 episodes and then put it on the back-burner, effectively, six-foot under. The networks have something to answer to when a show like A.D. is being canned and something like Stacked is getting renewed. Yes, that show Stacked: Pamela Anderson’s atrocious acting abilities combined with tight fitting shirts and enough cleavage to complete three breast enlargements and still make ten more motherboards for my computer. Fox has to seriously evaluate itself here, in that, sure, they have a few smash hits in 24 (though the past series have shown it is beating a dead horse (with high hopes though for the latest series)), Prison Break and The O.C., but it is wasting any future that A.D. has (or had), with God-awful social commentaries like American Dad.

So, what can you do? Nothing. A.D. is resigned to never show up on T.V. again, bar the DVDs. So if you wanted to know what exactly I was talking about, raving about, in this show, and want to watch a really good, quality comedy that a) doesn’t look for cheap laughs because b) there isn’t a live audience and c) makes you smarter* because of the high-brow comedy it employs, go pick up Season 1 and 2, watch them, and by the time you’re done with that, Season 3 will be released and, after that, you can cry yourself to sleep knowing that crap is playing instead of the great Jason Bateman leading his family into a new and funny life.

Thomas.

*No actual scientific backing for this claim, but it’s assumed by 90% of the world (no results to support the 90% either)

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