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Millennium Failure

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Why was it that Millennium failed? You had a new series by the creator of another series that was at the height of its popularity. You had the big name actor, an awesome premise, and the Millennium was just around the corner. The show was shot beautifully and episode after episode it sunk me in deeper. Now TV is filled with sitcom's, crime drama's, and reality TV. All which are highly sucessful but so tiredly over played. Are the Networks out of ideas? Just churn out another Law and Order spin-off(there are what about 80 of them now?), and collect the bucks.

Does anyone think that if the show Millennium was realeased today that it would succeed. It would certainly be fresh and new and a pleasent change of pace to the nightly programming I am left to deal with. The premise could be tweeked, the end could still come eventually, and Frank could thwart these attempts season to season, week to week, with the "serail killer of the week" shows sneaking in inbetween.

Millennium was the greatest show to grace my tube and the only thing that signaled that the "End was near" were the ratings. Since 3 seasons are all we got I am certainly glad to of had them..., aren't we all?

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MM did have huge rating for the Pilot but then rapidly dropped off. Which would lead me to conclude (and it's not a far stretch) that people were turned off by the extreme images and violence. There was a huge mix of sex and violence. It was very dark to say the least. The main star is not what anyone would ever call freindly, sexy, or for most people, likeable. Really, I love this show but it's very easy for me to understand why mainstream America was turned off. It seemed to defy almost every hit show formula. And on another not, I actually like "Law and Order: Criminal Intent". I think it's really good, you should cheak it out.

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I'm not very good at doing the critical analysis stuff - but I'll try.

I think the main reason for MM's failure was in fact its most successful aspect. I don't know whether I'm talking absolute rubbish, but my feeling is that some aspects of life can only really be dealt with successfully through the medium of story. When I look at the various topics dealt with in MM episodes, then I get more and more the feeling that they couldn't be dealt with in documentaries. The latest ep I've watched is The Well Worn Lock. I really don't think that any documentary would be allowed to show the depths of fear and abuse that is conveyed in this episode.

In many ways, I feel that's what turned people off from MM. Being not in the US/Canada, I don't know how the series was promoted but I would guess it was on the basis of another show by the creator of the X-Files. I would think people had certain prior assumptions about the show - and then found it was not only something completely different but also dealt with subject matter that unsettled them.

I'm a pretty ignorant person, at least in terms of literature and literary analysis, but I wonder if it's the case that some aspects of life can only really be addressed through drama? If people tuned in expecting to be entertained, but in fact found out they were being informed by thought-provoking drama - maybe that's why they tuned out. I'm not implying that people who don't like MM are intellectually deficient - just that perhaps after a hard day at work/school/whatever, wanted they wanted was an enjoyable yet intelligent hour's worth of entertainment, only to find that instead of the strange and wonderful world of the X-Files, they were actually seeing something of the real world than even documentaries are shy of showing.

Actually, I think MM would have even less chance of succeeding in the current climate. As news technology improves, people are getting more and more reality via their television sets. Television has always done well with shows that don't require too much input from the viewers, but in recent years I've had the feeling more and more that people want time in their day when they can escape from all that. I don't think there's a single episode of MM which would allow them to do that.

But then, I watch very little television - and what *I* want are shows that aren't superficial and don't pull their punches. Shows that have an impact on me, make me feel and think.

Incidentally, some years ago my daughter (bless her) having watched some MM episodes, advised me strongly not to watch it because she was concerned I'd find it too disturbing. I heeded her then, but not now - well, both she and I have grown up quite a bit since then ...

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I think the 1st season turned a lot of people off. It was brutal and violent with no remorse. I think those first few episodes determined it all for a good majority of the viewers. They were giving it a chance and probably never tuned in again. Like Libby said, people came into it expecting something similar to the X-Files. X-files has a lot of fans that love the relationship side as well as fans that love the shows and ideas. And it was lighthearted unlike MM. I've talked to several people about Millennium and most of them tell me that they didn't like season 1 at all but they loved season 2. I didn't like Millennium too much when it first came out. I didn't really care for the Serial Killer of the Week format. I got into it in season 2, specifically when "The Curse of Frank Black" aired. From then on I was hooked. I like the mystery, Mysticism, and storylines. Now looking back I appreciate season 1 but at the time it was just not what I wanted to see. I think season 1 killed any huge fanbase that Millennium ever hoped to have.  People didn't tune in to season 2 because they thought it was going to be like season 1 and the ratings were lackluster. Then when they caught on that it was different it was almost over.(And a lot of people I know got into it when it was in syndication.)

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Hi

I think too that a today MM would not be a success. In fact, it seems that since before it was shot, TV has tended to broadcast very light material. Want it or not, you have to laugh as soon as you turn it on. Laugh is a new credo. With sex, but from an humourous point of view, with vulgarity if possible. All TV shows are fast and tasteless, meant to make you escape the day-to-day gloom of work, transportation and home. They are even made to allow you to flee your family life if you are not careful.

At least MM was spirited and never for first-degree viewers, and that is perhaps why it sank: people may have expected more first-degree stories or characters. I guess that it is what will decide of the fate of Veritas and Miracles. Veritas aims at a younger audience, showing muscular action and dealing its marvel stories though a pictured generation gap. Miracles deals with flames: mature understanding, religious themes and no more appeal than what its myth will have to offer. I would not be surprised if Veritas could go on several seasons and Miracles be chopped off after a few episodes à la Lone Gunmen.

Regards

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For my part, I think UK audiences would be much more appreciative of Millennium if it aired now for the first time at prime time.

Over the past year we've had disturbing, difficult to watch programs such as "Wire In The Blood" and the recent "The Second Coming" which aired over the last two nights. I say disturbing and difficult because that's generally what people thought of Millennium. Too dark. Yet now TV companies are creating more and more dark and perhaps millenniumistic dramas to be screened at prime time.

I was amazed when my partner Val came home and told me that most of her colleagues 60+ were talking about "The Second Coming" all day. Only a couple of years ago this program would never have been screened prime time 9pm over Sunday and Monday nights.

We're becoming darker and our acceptance of darker entertainment is increasing. I have no doubt that Millennium would fare better now than then...

Regards,

Graham. :ouro:

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I think that a major factor in its failure was that people didn't know what to make of it.  It wasn't a nitty-gritty "Law and Order" spinoff, and yet it wasn't a SciFi "X-Files" clone.  It had influence from both, and yet had an all-new feel and genre that nothing touched.  Today, people want something different than that on TV.  Maybe they always have.  But it seems that on TV, they want something lighter that won't make them think, or they want it to be more realistic.  They can handle it in a movie and in fact eat it up in that format.  TV doesn't seem to be able to hold it, though.  Quite a shame.

I have no doubt that were MM released today, it would fail just as quickly or quicker.  What amazes me is that while "Freakylinks", deity help me, is given chance after chance to pick up and FINALLY was beat to death, they don't even try to get shows out there that could actually change everything -- like XF.  That was a completely unprecedented success, after a meager first season, but picked up amazingly in reruns during the following summer.  Perhaps if they promoted certain other shows as good as they did that, then they would have more hits on their hands.  Unfortunately for them, I've stopped watching FOX altogether, which used to be the ONLY network I watched.  Now it's only ABC, because the only television I have use for is "Veritas"\"Miracles".  I saw my first and ONLY episode of "Joe Millionaire" last week (I hear about it constantly, and I decided I should stop dissing it without seeing for myself -- I shouldn't've bothered) and was absolutely disgusted.  Yes, as they say, the fellow seems to feel guilt, but at the same time he's gettin' action with HOW many girls?  Misogynists.  It's amazing what TV has fallen to.  It should enlighten WHILE it entertains!  Or at least entertain!

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OK heres my take on why Millenium failed.

1)  It's dark, grim and fairly unrelenting and whilst this could happen in the x-files the perpetrator of these crimes would be a monster or an alien, in millennium the monsters was us regular people.

2) The main character wasn't a young good looking guy but was Lance (Don't get me wrong Lance is the business but demographically viewers want to see younger guys)  I always thought having Lance was a stroke of genius but there you go.

3)  The format of the show - In the first series there was very little in the way of a story arc it was just a different case each week - (I personally loved season 1)

4)  Did I mention it was too dark? lol

I thought it was a damn shame Millennium didn't catch on as I personally adored the show, its style content, acting and stroylines were nearly always fanatastic.  Too bad more people didn't tune in every week.

:(

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I think it didn't fail.   I am pretty sure at the time, it was doing decent in rating, not great by any means by ok.  

FOX wanted to see if they could capture a bigger audience, so, they took the show off the air in hopes that Harsh Realm may suceed.  Of course, it didn't, cause FOX gave up on it before it even started.

Their is a strange sense of justice in all this.  Not one show has ever lasted more than 2 years on the Friday night slot.  Only Millennium lasted 3 years.   "The Curse of Frank Black" is alive. ;)

Harsh Realm, Dark Angel, Freaky Links, & Some cop show.   I am sure their was a few others, but, all gone.  

Darwin's Eye.

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......let's see if i can fire up a few brain cells here:

MM-SEASON-1-END RATING: 63RD-(OR 67TH)

MM-SEASON-2-END RATING: 117TH-(i "think")

MM-SEASON-3-END RATING: EITHER 105TH OR 108TH

     ...sill better than any other so-called hit on WB or UPN!

                                                 ~se7en:ouro:

(i've got to find those issues of "variety")

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