JUST FOR ONE DAY: Calling Entertainment Weekly from the picket line where he’s protesting his own show, Heroes creator admitted that the onetime must-see show has suffered the sophomore slump from hell in its second season.
“We assumed the audience wanted season one — a buildup of intrigue about these characters and the discovery of their powers,” Kring said. “They wanted adrenaline. We made a mistake.”
Kring also admitted that they’ve taken too long to introduce too many new characters, and that not all of them will survive the end of the current storyline. The world-saving stakes weren’t raised till almost halfway through the story, the love stories were damp squibs, and viewer-favorite character Hiro (Masi Oka) was kept in 17th-Century Japan and out of the plot for far too long – Kring says he should have done his little time-traveling jaunt for three episodes, tops.
The writer’s strike has apparently been a gift for Kring and the show, as they’ve been forced to consider writing the December 3rd episode into a potential season finale – the end of the volume 2 – with an eye to kicking things back into gear at some undetermined point with volume 3.
It sounds like a good idea, and one that more shows currently looking at unexpected production hiatuses should consider. I’m looking forward to Desperate Housewives acknowledging its roots and returning as a full-blown ‘50s Technicolor melodrama, Ugly Betty transforming itself into a musical, and procedurals like CSI and Law & Order slimming down to brisk, half-hour shows paced like radio serials – easily managed by simply cutting down on broody close-ups and most of the technical gobbledegook.
STRUCK DUMB: THE SAGA CONTINUES: The writers’ strike heads into the end of its first week with no shortage of news. This weekend’s Saturday Night Live has been cancelled, sparing us the prospect of a juicy Amy Winehouse on-camera trainwreck, and according to the Chicago Tribune, shows such as Dirty Sexy Money that were still struggling to build audiences and remained without full-season pickups from the networks might not survive a long strike. The ABC primetime melodrama is looking pallid, as are other new titles such as Gossip Girl, Aliens In America, Life and Reaper.
Larry David and Simpsons creator Matt Groening have joined the ranks of celebrities spotted walking the picket line in Los Angeles, and Eva Longoria was coldly received by strikers – including Julia Louis-Dreyfus, whose show has been shut down by the strike - when she tried to make nice and deliver pizza to them outside the Desperate Housewives set, according to the New York Daily News. Strikers launched into chants like “We've got Julia, yes we do! Hey now, Eva, what about you?” Longoria, of course, is under no obligation to leave work and join striking members of a union to which she doesn’t belong, but it’s nice that the strike has revealed Hollywood as the hypertrophied high school we always knew it was.