NBC delays "Southland" until late October

TV Arts


NBC pushing back 'Southland'
Cop drama to premiere Oct. 23 instead of Sept. 25

NBC is pushing the sophomore season premiere date for "Southland" back
a month.

The John Wells cop drama will now bow on Friday, Oct. 23, instead of
its original Sept. 25 air date.

Insiders said the Peacock hopes to use the extra month to further
promote the show, which they worried was getting lost in the fall
marketing shuffle. New premiere date will move "Southland" away from
the noisy launches of CBS' "Medium" and Fox's "Dollhouse," both of
which were set to preem against "Southland" on Sept. 25.

Peacock will air "Dateline NBC" in the Friday 9 p.m. timeslot until
"Southland" bows.

"Southland" launched strongly last spring for NBC, but then saw its
audience erode over time. NBC likely wants to give "Southland" a
launch akin to a series premiere, and hopes to do so once others
(including "The Jay Leno Show") have bowed.
Wow - this is a 'vote of confidence'... NOT!

I say this is pulled permanently by X-Mas...
And probably replaced by Chuck, thus causing those of us who will be
wataching Chuck and Dollhouse and perhaps even Stargate Universe (if
it doesn't suck -- yes, a very big 'if') a lot of unwarranted
DVR/TiVO/VCR-programming-related stress.

  -- Rob

PS:  Those of you who hate Dollhouse, try it again, starting with the
*second* episode, "The Target" (admittedly an homage to "Most
Dangerous Game").  The aired pilot sucked just as much as the unaired
pilot did.  The rest of the series (particularly the second half of
the season) is MUCH better.
I've watched every ep, including the original pilot and the unaired ep.  
It was the vileness of the aired 'finale' that finally killed the show 
for me.
Huh?!  I mean, seriously -- huh?!  Vileness?!

  -- Rob
Yes.  Vileness.
Because . . . ?

  -- Rob
The Dollhouse finale?  We went over that at great length.  The series 
had been improving, and suddenly they hit us with the single worst 
episode, which *totally* fell apart with the insipid line about "you 
can't go on being a slave to the Dollhouse, now that a black man is 
president!!" (which actually WORKED) and suddenly every character took a 
stupid pill, and ran around doing stuff that didn't make sense, and the 
bounty hunter chicks just vanished, and our heroes just got the vital 
clues handed to them, and that stupid 'drop the hard drive' scene and 
GRRR ARGH enough!
Oh, so you're saying that the show is too Meta for you . . . Oy.

Well, unfortunately, I didn't actually start watching the show until I
got the DVDs at the end of July, so those review threads had already
gone to the deletion bin three months lprevious, so I can only go by
my reactions to the show.

IMO, the "drop the hard drive" scene was metaphorically necessary --
*earned.*  So was the "stay back or I shoot this hard drive" scene,
which I think is probably the most hilarious death threat since John
Malkovich threatened to shoot the bunny in Con Air.

You *do* realize that the show not only isn't supposed to be
realistic, it's thematically in the same territory as The Prisoner,
Kafka and even, arguably Marat/Sade?  Stop taking the plot so
literally -- it's distinctively, blatantly Post-Modern in the best
sense of the term.

And FTR, IMO, the characters' (and "characters'") actions were
consistent with their motivations given the situation.  Whiskey was
losing her grip on her Dr. Saudners persona as Alpha's attack on
Victor caused her to start reliving the trauma of her own
disfigurement at Alpha's hands.  Ballard realized that he was in it so
deep that the only way that he was going to, well, stay alive and have
even a little bit of hope of bringing down the entire worldwide
Dollhouse operation was to work it from the inside -- thus, his
engineering his deal to set November free.  (Whether she's actually
free or not remains to be seen, IMO.)  And, frankly, Topher is a
sociopath -- an amiable sociopath, yes, but as Epitaph One shows, he
hasn't really thought through any of the implications or moral
ramifications of the Dollhouse as a whole, much less his part in it.
He doesn't really come to grips with what the Dollhouse *is* until the
Imprint technology goes viral in E-One.  So his sociopathy in the
present-day parts of the Dollhouse story are due to his inability to
be introspective.  He's still dazzled by the technology and in love
with his own ability to create the Dolls' Engagement personasto really
sit back and take any of it in.  The whole "science moves faster than
ethics' ability to keep up with it" dilemma.

Moreover, even setting aside what we know from Epitaph One entirely,
the entire season has been about how the lack of ethics in the mere
premise of the Dollhouse project, much less the organization itrself,
is affecting Adele, Boyd, Dr. Saunders/Whiskey, etc.  Boyd really has
qualms about the program, but as long as it exists, *somebody's* got
to look out for the Dolls.  Dr. Saunders has similar motivations, but
is further along in her objections even before she realizes who she
really is.  Topher is, of course, Topher (or Warren of the Nerdly
Trio, but before Warren killed anybody).  And Adele is in complete
denial -- denial that her own concept of the Dollhouse is, of course,
that it's a sci-fi escort service but also in denial of the threat
that the Imprint technology poses and thus, the great potential it
holds for military use.

I mean, to me it sounds like you're shocked, I tell you, shocked that
morally and ethically compromised characters are both capable of and
actually making clearly stupid decisions.

  -- Rob
[email protected] says...

Or to sum it up: Way to clever for network TV ;-)
No, I'm shocked, shocked I tell you, that the finale got away from the 
director and turned into a crapfest, and was allowed to air.