Picture it now. Your world has just become that little bit more miserable as you hear of the impending cancellation of a TV series you were absolutely sure had potential to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. That blow of finality hits you out of nowhere and it hurts. It’s the saddest thing you can ever imagine, all that effort you put in to straining your eyeballs to watch that show and now your hopes and dreams have been crushed. Curse those evil networks that wasted your time. Week on week, it pulled at your heart-strings like a violin and caused your body to dehydrate every time you cried. You became anxious, excited and tense waiting for its scheduled weekly release. But now you have nothing…What’s left, where is your release? Alas, you are broken and disheartened but you will not surrender. You must save the show. Save it with a petition! YES that’s it! I’ll get a thousand million signatures to show those evil networks that fans refuse the cancellation and demand a second season. You tweet like your life depends on it, you rally the troops and you feel inspired. You’ve made an impact or have you?
As Adam Savage Of Mythbusters always says. “I reject your reality and substitute it with my own.”
Yes, this is a growing pain we can all relate to. How many times have you been put in that situation. You’ve got excited and started investing your time in to a TV show, only to see it cancelled? Plenty, I’m sure. But what defines the success and staying power of a TV show, how could you save it and what could the networks do differently? What’s the point of doing a pilot, releasing the first season and then cancelling it without closure. Surely the only thing this does is piss off viewers that bring in a steady profit!
Why not at least try to have a worst case scenario in place as part of the boot up of a new series:
- Have a script in place to provide an ending even if it’s just a 1 season run. Provide people with closure
- Put viewership targets up as full disclosure for everyone to see. Be clear about the expectations required to make a second season feasible. Social media platforms are powerful motivators, they can change the world
- Move the show in to a slot that’s subsidized with more adverts. If that’s what it’s going to take, then offer it up as an alternative. If people value the series enough, then a compromise can be reached
Sadly TV stations can afford to ignore things like this, for now. Blow back is minimal and viewers continue to contribute to the costs of running the TV networks at their own dissatisfaction. The unfortunate truth is that there isn’t much we can do. It’s not about what the fans want, it’s just business and revenue has to be generated. Yes, you could start a protest and hopefully generate a following through a fan base on social media platforms. You could ask fans to do an embargo by not subscribing to that network or just blatantly refuse to watch adverts. But what is the likelihood that the fans would truly care or follow through on this. Has a fan petition for the rejection of the cancellation of a TV series ever mitigated that cancellation and actually worked? I don’t know.
I don’t have an exact answer for this situation and it’s incredibly frustrating. Consistent disheartening of viewers will eventually impact on the performance of networks. For now people will moan for the sake of moaning and hope things are going to change without intervention. That type of attitude is not going to affect change. Nonetheless, the world is getting smaller and people are beginning to understand that the control is in their hands. It’s just a matter of time before everyone wakes up and works together.
How long it’s going to take for that transformation to happen is anyone’s guess…