Tuesday, November 7

Matt Roush on BSG

Source: TV Guide

Question: In Monday's Ask Matt, someone was asking about Battlestar Galactica's ratings and what the chances for a fourth season will be. How do you think DVD sales factor into the equation? BSG airs and we watch it, then it comes out on DVD, and we run out and buy it. Heck, they even got us to pay two times for Season 2, because they didn't release the entire season in a single set. Does that money factor into the decision to keep producing the show? - Rick

Matt Roush: Are you kidding? Damn straight, it does. A revenue stream is a revenue stream, and as I noted in the last panicked Battlestar exchange, you can't underestimate the importance of corporate synergy in cases like this. NBC Universal produces and owns the show, and airs it on one of its key cable assets. The fact that shows like these are big DVD sellers only contributes to the bottom-line wisdom of keeping it alive as long as it's viable.

But keep in mind this point, brought up by Patrick of Columbia, South Carolina: "I'm wondering if Battlestar Galactica's storytelling might best be served by going the Babylon 5 route: a beginning and an end in five crisp seasons. It seems like a stretch, no matter how critically acclaimed it might be, to think BSG will last beyond five years, anyway. That said, the third season has been spectacular, thus far. You think?"

Yes, I think. This has been a thrilling and daring season, so politically provocative and emotionally riveting. Amazing, amazing stuff. I don't know exactly how many seasons ahead they've plotted out for this, and I'm reluctant right now even to consider there being an end point. But Patrick is probably right: A show like this shouldn't be expected to last indefinitely, and as I've said before, if the producers and the network can agree to wrap this story in a way that meets both of their needs while satisfying the audience, there's no reason for us to be greedy about it. I still wouldn't worry about cancellation at this point.

Newshound: SciFi

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