Monday, May 10, 2010

On the Bubble

The phrase “on the bubble” is one of those somewhat lame industry terms that essentially describes a TV show that may or may not be returning next season. It’s usually a show that doesn’t get great ratings, which means the network has to really consider if it’s worth going through with another batch of episodes, regardless of the quality of content (hence why we’ve had to say farewell to so many great shows in years past). But ratings is only part of it... Actually, for a better explanation as to why some shows make it to air over others, I’d suggest checking out Craig Engler’s (yep, that dude at Syfy I interviewed not too long ago) latest post over at Boing Boing. It's a little different when it comes to a returning show, but he's sharing some good insight regardless.

One show that’s on the bubble, that I happen to really enjoy, is Lie to Me. The conceit of this show is clever – a man who is essentially a human lie-detector solves crimes – yet his great talent is often his greatest inhibitor. I have high hopes that the show will do well when it returns to Fox this summer (and I think it’s a good sign it’s been paired with The Good Guys, that new badass-looking cop show featuring Bradley Whitford and Colin Hanks), and higher hopes it will get a season three pick-up.

However things aren’t looking good. Not only did showrunner Shawn Ryan recently leave the show, but I’ve got a source who just told me today that the Lie to Me sets are sitting wrapped outside on a street on the lot, adding “Why would their sets be stored outside to the elements for the past month if it was going to stick around?” A solid point my friends. Le sigh. Man, I really, REALLY hope this isn't the case! Maybe weathered props are the next hot thing in set design?

So, all you TV watchers out there – if you are sad to say goodbye to a lot of your shows over the next two weeks, fear not because you’ve got a whopping 12 new episodes of Lie to Me to look forward to! Watch 'em! And keep your fingers and toes crossed this show doesn't stay on the bubble for too much longer - let's go for a third season!


Victoria said...

I love "Lie to Me" and I really hope it gets a season 3 pick up!

Kim said...
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Rich said...

Coming from production myself, many times when they "strike a set," it is usually to clear stage space for any other mid-season projects. Though I never thought that leaving a set outside "in the element" was a great idea, it is done from time to time. This doesn't mean a show is canceled. That's why studios have a set department, to rebuild the sets if needed. As far as Shawn Ryan is concerned, personally I don't think he brought much to the show. He may have bumped up the action, however bringing in the idea of "Cal-Vision" didn't compare to how details were caught through Cal's eyes in the first season. Shawn Ryan simply has too much on his plate, so with the loss of "24" for FOX, they have the perfect candidate to step in and take over the helm of "Lie To Me." It's Hollywood, and show runners are a dime a dozen. The world doesn't stop revolving because Shawn Ryan decided to jump a ship that's not sinking.