Monday, August 06, 2007

Dear BBC America...

... you kipper-eating, Beckhamless, Thames-floating links of doody.

Thank you ever-so-kindly for rerunning the episodes of The Prisoner a few months back, allowing me the opportunity to have my DVR record them all so I could watch them at my leisure over the course of several weeks. It's a show that, for decades, I've heard described as one of the all-time greatest science-fiction programs in the history of television and is one I have never had the chance to watch until you began rerunning it. For that, I genuinely thank you.

However, allow me to complain that in your haste to rebroadcast The Prisoner, you seem to have gotten a bit mixed up as to the actual broadcast order of those episodes in two unfortunate ways.

Firstly, you began with Episode 1 (good start), then jumped to Episodes 10 - 17 (not so great) before going back to broadcast Episodes 2 - 9. Again, a complete set in the end, but not exactly broadcast in order forcing me to have my DVR to record them all first, then watch each episode only after checking the episode numbers in each episode's description so that I could watch them in sequence.

Secondly and most tragically, the final two episodes of the series were mistakenly labeled as Episodes 8 and 9 rather than Episodes 16 and 17, as they should have been. Imagine my dismay at reaching what should have been the half-way point of the series only to find the series had ended right before my eyes (if you call THAT an ending).

To put it another way, I was robbed.

By you.

And you now owe me.

To make it up, I must insist that you broadcast the entirety of Torchwood (in its proper broadcast order), as well as The Sarah Jane Adventures, (also in its proper broadcast order). You might also throw in repeat broadcasts of classic Tom Baker Doctor Who episodes and any Rik Mayall comedies you might have on hand.

And if you really want to get back in my good graces, you may refrain from showing any more episodes of Are You Being Served? from now until the end of time.

And if you really REALLY want to get back in my good graces, you might also use the Tardis to go back in time and convince the actors who played Jeff in Coupling and the ones who played Archie and Duncan in Monarch of the Glen that it was a very bad idea to leave those series at the height of their popularity and that the shows just wouldn't be the same (or, in some cases, MAKE ANY F%$#!NG SENSE) without them and that they should really stay on to wrap things up. Give `em more money if they ask for it. They deserved it.

Oh, and more Red Dwarf, please.

That, I believe, should do nicely.

Yours forever and ever,



Rebecca said...

Torchwood kicks ass - it's darker and more edgy than Doctor Who (at least, the episode I saw), but still pretty good. They're airing it on CBC in the fall.

Marie Godwin said...

I second the Coupling suggestion.

crsunlimited said...

Ok. Fess up. You wouldn't have actually noticed the episodes being out of order had it not been listed in your guide. I have watched several episodes of the Prisoner, and have even seen the last episode of the series in which he finally meets #1. They really made little sense when watching them, and as far as Sci-Fi goes these rank right up there with the last 15 minutes of 2001 a space odyssey.

I wasn't aware that torchwood had been out a while. Only recently have I seen previews of the upcoming series of it. Or are you talking about an older series?

Juice S. Aaron said...


I fess. Actually, in watching them as sporadically as I did, I forgot that they weren't in order and began watching some of the episodes in the early teens before I'd even seen the alleged episodes 8 & 9, which turned out to be the final two. It wasn't until I figured out I was seeing things out of order that I went back and resumed proper order and 8 & 9 were the next ones up at that point. Beyond the final two there were only about three I hadn't seen at that point.

I think there is an order to the show, though it is subtle. Some of the Prisoner fan sites point out some of the things to look for to be able to tell when the episodes fall chonologically, because TV stations have been showing the reruns of them out of order for 40 years now. However, if you study them, they did seem to be building to a conclusion of sorts, just not one I think was worthy of the rest.

I can see how the 2001 analogy might apply, cause I didn't "get" that ending either when I first saw it and was a bit put out with it for a long time. Then I read the Arthur C. Clarke book and while the ending is exactly the same, it all makes perfect sense and makes what you see in the movie's ending make perfect sense as well.

As for Torchwood, while it hasn't been broadcast in this country yet (it's actually scheduled to hit BBC America in September, I think) a whole season has been broadcast in England and they're allegedly working on the second. The Sarah Jane Adventures has just begun its first season.

An employee of a small town "liberry" chronicles his quest to remain sane while dealing with patrons who could star in a short-lived David Lynch television series.