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Later Rather Than Sooner... (Expanded)

By RD Heldenfels Published: June 12, 2006

After filing some notes here this morning, a few additional points occurred to me, which I have added in bold type like this.


Thursday got away from me as I was trying to get some things written before taking care of some family business during a long weekend. (Happy 80th again, Mom!)


Thanks to all of you who have been checking in, and leaving comments. (See ''Back Soon,'' below.)Fred -- things do feel much better here now that we have a somewhat clearer idea of what the next chapter at the Beacon Journal will be. Eric -- I STILL haven't gotten to the ''Everwood'' finale. Maybe this week.


As for the DVDs, this is one of the pains felt by fans of long-running TV shows; a season or two will come out on DVD, not sell as well as expected and be followed by a long, long wait for more seasons, if they come at all.


My suspicion, though, is that DVD is becoming less important as a way of storing and revisiting beloved shows of the past. It may survive in a limited form for collectors, but we're moving ever closer to having shows available via the Internet, so you only need to acquire the specific thing you want -- and you save a lot of shelf space at home. Still, for now, it would be nice if a company would commit to releasing all of a series before they issue a single season, so consumers are not left hanging.


More thoughts about DVD: Notes that come in from fans longing for a specific show on DVD often include the complaint about other things that have arrived ahead of their favorites (as Eric noted about the release of ''F Troop''). I can understand the frustration. My weekend e-mail, for example, included an announcement of the DVD release of the ''Blue Thunder'' TV series, which ran for all of 11 episodes in 1984. But the whole DVD issue, which I talked about some in my ''JAG'' DVD post earlier, keeps coming back to what distributors believe will sell. Action shows seem to have a following, for one thing. And supernatural/sci-fi/cult shows will get a DVD hearing even when they haven't done well in prime time, because the fans will want to own the shows. They'll even buy them again and again in revised configurations. That doesn't explain ''F Troop,'' though; I have to think that it popped up in some survey of shows boomers remember fondly from childhood. (I remember it from childhood, though not especially fondly.)


Other things: My review of ''Deadwood'' is here, and my column about ''The Closer'' is here.


Later today I expect to post some notes about ''How to Get the Guy,'' an ABC series premiering tonight at 10, and possibly about ''Friday Night Lights,'' an NBC series premiering this fall, inspired by the book and movie of the same name. (Short take here: I liked it, more perhaps than I expected.) I'm also hoping to get in something about ''Hell's Kitchen,'' the Fox reality series beginning its second season tonight.


I didn't see much TV over the weekend, except for sports, and even that was piecemeal -- bits of baseball, track, tennis, soccer. I confess to being a World Cup fan. And, as I have said before, I especially like to watch it in Spanish. I don't speak Spanish, but the narration seems more dramatic, and not understanding the language makes it easier to tune out the talk and focus on the game.


Still, absent access to a Spanish channel over the weekend, I still caught some of Mexico-Iran, and far more of Trinidad/Tobago's dramatic, scoreless tie against Sweden. I enjoy seeing soccer underdogs drive the big countries nuts, as was the case in that game. And I find plenty of drama in watching two teams battle and maneuver to get the ball in the goal. Part of my pleasure may come from long-ago memories of playing soccer in high school (though I was not at all good at it), so I have some understanding of what the game requires. In any case, I do find myself looking for games. Right now I have Australia-Japan on (in Spanish, too!), and I hope to watch a bunch of the US-Czech game later today.


Also tuned to some of the men's final at the French Open, and had a reminder of how dramatically sports can turn. When we first turned on the game, Federer was up 5-0 in the first set and appeared dominant. When we tuned in later, Nadal had won the next two sets and was headed to victory.


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