First of all; people are surprise the show is going off? I mean I thought it was understood that the move to ABC was the nail in the coffin. Clearly the producers talked ABC into the deal NOT to give new life to the series but to end it on their own terms instead of being unceremoniously canceled by NBC. (Who knows, maybe there was a ceremony) You know it’s over for a series, just like with Morel Orel over at AdultSwim a few months ago, when they start showing 2 episodes a night. You can tell the network just wants to fulfill their obligation. And that’s a loophole that the producers didn’t count on; like they said something in the contract like “must air, must air during prime time, must advertise for the show, etc, etc.” So the idea to just dump all the episodes in a rush must seem like such a farfetched waste they didn’t think to stipulate “must air only one new episode per week.”
But having watched about 4 or 5 episodes of the new season I can tell you the show is still fresh as far as I’m concerned. The writing, acting and level of production feel pretty good. This is not easy to maintain. Not many shows manage to do it. Take for example a show like The Office; I think those guys can go on as long as they want. On the other hand the charm, of say, a Dharma and Greg burned out by the end of the first season, but it carried on for another 5 years I think. See? You had totally forgotten about the show hadn’t you?
Ok so let’s get down to what’s really on my mind? Zach looks ROUGH to me. When I started watching the shows from this season I was aware the show was going off the air and I was under the impression it was because NBC thought they weren’t making enough money from the show. BUT, as I looked at Zach all I could think was “man he looks bad!” I mean he looks gaunt, and tired, and just beat the hell up.
Now I’m not one to talk. I had a TERRIBLE girlfriend thing in my life a year back and I went to hell fast (see my “about” page). But what happened to him? Was it because all the internet searches for “Zach” now have a different spelling as they seek out that other guy now? Or was it the stress of the show? The grind of churning it out? I don’t know; I mean everybody else on the show looks ok. So maybe this ending is for the best. Or maybe I’m just seeing things. But judge for yourself…
Jesus. He comes up quite a bit on the Adult Swim program Moral Orel created by Dino Stamatopoulos, but in this case I actually am yelling “Jesus!” Because you haven’t seen anything until you’ve seen this season. I’m a regular Adult Swim viewer and to some extent I’m relatively familiar with Dino’s work, having watched every episode of Mr. Show and TV Funhouse, and of course he’s from right here Chicago. But this is supposedly the final season of Morel Orel and all beats are off, or maybe it’s the gloves that have come off. SOMETHING is off because the people behind the show are taking the scorched earth approach to TV. Basically, fuck it.
Here’s what I know; right in the first episode of the season it said “final season.” And a few months ago on the Adult Swim website they had some video footage from a comic convention where Dino and the guys from The Venture Bros had a little on stage fracas. Dino didn’t like the hair on the other guys and wasn’t happy that his show had been canceled. The Venture guys didn’t seem to attack back but said stuff along the lines of the station keeps quality shows no matter who makes them. In other words, if your show was good or even BAD but people watched it you wouldn’t be cancelled.
So this is the cauldron in which the current season of Morel Oral has been brewing. I WANT TERRIBLY to tell you what’s happened in the 5 episodes I’ve seen in the last 2 weeks. Ok, let me stop for a second. 5 episodes in 2 weeks? Yeah. The station has been showing 2 a week, plus tonight early online access to Sunday’s show. Why would they be doubling up like this? I’m guessing it’s in some contract somewhere that the shows have to air at least once (if they get past the censor) and not go straight to DVD because it’s the feeling I’m getting is just somebody saying “just get it over with.” So we have these new shows and…well it’s weird.
The episodes are very Pulp Fiction. I can’t tell if they were created like that or the network is just showing them out of order. It appears they were created like that because many scenes are repeated in the “right” time and sometimes you might see the scene earlier where it doesn’t seem to fit exactly but you get the idea. So maybe it’s more like Momento. At any rate, that still doesn’t examine the CONTENT. Holy Shit! The content of the show is bananas. Plain and simple it’s gone from a “dark” show to a BLACK show. The premise has always been this sort of satire of the Davy and Gumby religious claymation from the 60’s (50’s?), but they really only hinted at certain things up to this point. This season, on the hand, is just explicit as can be and from subject matter to depiction it’s just RAW. Take no prisoner, cut no corners, no vagueness or innuendo. Basically; show that shit is the theme they’re working from. And what can I say? I mean it’s both entertaining and sad. The obvious thing that people are saying on the message board is that it’s “disturbing.” No it’s not. I know much more hardcore shit, and even regular people should not be “disturbed” in 2008 almost 9. But it is sad that it takes a show’s cancellation for people to both stop censoring themselves and for a network to allow a creative team to really express themselves. You know what I’m saying. It’s a backed into a corner type situation. So hurry up and watch, at this rate it’ll be off the air in a few more weeks. And I’m guessing the re-run potential is pretty low for this season.