Why do I still watch network sci-fi shows? This is the question I find myself asking today, and I'm sure after reading this, a lot more fans will be asking themselves the same thing. NBC has just canceled the best show most people aren't watching, that being the excellent sci-fi series/cop drama Awake.
For those unfamiliar (which judging by the ratings is most of you), Awake follows Det. Michael Britten (Jason Isaacs, delivering an absolutely terrific performance), who finds himself living in two parralel realities following a fatal car accident. In one reality, Britten's wife died, while in the other, his young son was killed. Every time he falls asleep (or is otherwise knocked unconcious) Britten wakes up in the other reality. Each episode features the usual "case of the week" format common to most cop shows, but the sci-fi elements are really what the make series shine. Britten finds clues in one reality that lead him to solve a case in the other. Some information he learns is even leading him to believe that the accident that changed his life was no accident at all.
But I guess now, we'll probably never know which reality was real, or who caused the accident. There are still two more first season episodes set to air, but I highly doubt they will provide much closure, since the producers were not informed of the cancellation before filming on the finale wrapped up. Awake is yet another great high-concept show to meet its end after low ratings on a broadcast network. These shows do so much better on cable, where the 5+ million viewers Awake draws would be downright good. Sigh.
In other NBC news, the comedies Are You There, Chelsea?, Bent, and Best Friends Forever have all met the cancellation axe. None are too surprising, as all three make Awake's ratings look great. Especially "Chelsea" which was critically thrashed. The critical reaction on Bent was actually very good, but the network didn't even bother to promote it, making it's demise a self-fulfilling prophecy. Best Friends Forever's reviews were just a medicore as its ratings, garnering a solid meh from most critics.
Are you bummed about the end of Awake? Will you miss Chelsea, Bent, or BFF?