If it’s Thursday, this must be the mailbag, with some talk about different ways people now watch shows.
Q: Is there a second season of “House of Cards?” Can the show be seen anywhere besides Netflix? It is a very interesting story.
A: Yes, there will be a second season of the drama starring Kevin Spacey as a ruthless politician, based on a British TV series. Since the idea behind the show was to draw viewers to Netflix, I have not yet seen any news about it airing on broadcast or cable; Amazon.com does offer the first 13 episodes as streaming video — and is taking orders for a DVD and Blu-ray, although without a specific release date.
If you are longing for something comparable, the British House of Cards Trilogy is on DVD.
Q: I understand “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” are coming back, which is great news. However, it’s hard for me to get excited because I don’t have a computer and they are going to be shown on the Internet. Is there any possibility that for old-school folks such as myself that Lifetime or maybe SOAPnet will pick them up?
A: At this writing, the soaps are set to start their new online lives on April 29. The only carriers announced so far are Hulu, Hulu Plus and iTunes, all online services. I have seen no news about a cable or broadcast window. The people behind the soaps clearly want to see if the online model will be successful.
It’s much like the way Netflix, in the above question, has gotten extra attention through new offerings like House of Cards, and other originals are being made for YouTube and sites like FunnyorDie.com. Viewers are increasingly making use of online resources for their viewing, especially when their smart TVs are connected to online services.
Q: I’m hooked on the ABC new show “Zero Hour.” It has disappeared from the schedule and I can’t find any mention of when it will be aired again on the ABC website. Any idea why they take a new show that is just beginning to get a following and then have it disappear into thin air?
A: ABC pulled the thriller starring Anthony Edwards after three telecasts. There was no indication that it was “just beginning to get a following.” The numbers were so bad that you couldn’t do much less than Zero.
The first episode, Deadline.com noted, “marked the lowest-rated in-season debut for a scripted show ever on the network.” It was even lower than the premiere of Last Resort, which previously occupied Zero Hour’s Thursday time slot — and was canceled because its ratings did not meet ABC’s expectations. Then the numbers dropped even more for the next two telecasts, and ABC dumped the show. You may get to see the remaining episodes at some point, but no one will be adding to Zero after that.
Q: I really enjoy the program “Death in Paradise.” I was wondering where it is filmed. I never seem to catch that in the credits.
A: The BBC mystery series uses real-life Guadeloupe for its fictional island of Saint-Marie. In a look at the show’s location, RadioTimes.com said, “Guadeloupe is shockingly vivid. Everywhere you look there are bright primary colours — deep blues, greens, yellows, reds — all year round.” And Ben Miller, the star of the show, said you could not match that kind of look in an English TV studio.
MAILBAG UPDATE: A couple of weeks ago, I reported that Vegas would return March 12 after the new CBS drama Golden Boy was tried out in the Dennis Quaid series’ time slot for a short time before moving to Fridays. After looking at the Golden ratings, CBS changed its plans. Golden Boy remains on Tuesdays (aside from a previously set Friday telecast) through its season finale on May 14. Vegas will move to Fridays effective April 5, remaining there until its season finale on May 10.
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Rich Heldenfels writes about popular culture for the Beacon Journal and Ohio.com, including the HeldenFiles Online, www.ohio.com/blogs/heldenfiles. He is also on Facebook and Twitter.