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Anger on social media swamps A&E over 'Glades' cancellation

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- I'll be honest. I didn't really have much of a column for this week. I was going to write about how it's almost time for the fall season to start and cover the few big network happenings this week.

Then, while I was compiling the weekly listings, I watched last week's episode of "The Glades."

It was the season finale, and it was a HUGE cliffhanger (which I won't spoil for even bigger slowpokes than me). It involved the fate of a major character in the time leading up to Jim and Callie's wedding.

The episode originally aired Monday, Aug. 26. Six days later, on Sept. 1, A&E canceled the show.

I howled with rage when, after seeing the episode, I read the news. It's not that I'm devastated the show is over; I am just furious that it ended -- or rather, didn't -- like it did.

The action was leading up to a wedding; is there a more perfect ending than that? Had it ended that way, I would have shrugged and thought, "Well, it had a good run," but since it didn't, I'm left thinking, "Really?! Four seasons of loyal viewing, and this is how you repay the fans, A&E?"

I understand TV is a business and it's all about the money, so if something's not making enough of it, it's got to go. However, when a show's been on for several seasons, it would be nice for the network to have even the teensiest bit of respect for the viewers.

Sure, the writers are partially to blame since they chose to go the cliffhanger route. But clearly, they must have felt at least fairly secure in their renewal odds, or I doubt they'd have chosen the path they did, especially in this case, where there was such a perfect option for an ending readily available.

Maybe before filming concluded, the network suits could have said to the show, "Hey, your ratings aren't so hot this season. Maybe you shouldn't plan too far ahead." Or, even better, just come right out with it and make a decision with enough time for the show to craft a proper ending -- or at least re-tool what it's already got to make it as satisfying as possible.

I've been extremely lucky in recent years that two of my favorite shows -- "Chuck" and "Breaking Bad" -- have ended knowing that they were done and thus able to go out on their terms. As sad as I am at their end, I am extremely grateful that they weren't just abruptly cut off.

It seems like within the past two years, more and more long-running shows have headed into their last seasons with the knowledge that it is the final season, and I think that's how it should be. Even if it ends up only being a half season, give them a chance to plot a proper exit.

That way, when the final credits roll, fans still may not like the ending, but at least they can hate it knowing it was the one chosen for them by the show and not foisted on them by the network.

•••

Scripted series premiere: "Last Tango in Halifax," 8 p.m. Sunday, PBS (BBC drama about former sweethearts reunited after 60 years).

Other series premieres: "The Customer is Always Right?" 10 p.m. Thursday, OWN (customers get a week to try revamping struggling national brands); "Hello Ross," 10 p.m. Friday, E! (pop culture talk show with Leno's former "Ross the Intern"); "Miami Monkey," 10 p.m. Sunday, VH1 ("Mob Wives" spin-off); "The Million Second Quiz," 8 p.m. Monday, NBC (trivia game show taking place inside around the clock for 11.57 days); "The Arsenio Hall Show," 11:30 p.m. Monday, Fox (late-night talk show); "Snake Salvation," 9 p.m. Tuesday, National Geographic (non-W.Va. snake-handling preachers); "Too Young To Marry?" 10 p.m. Wednesday, Oxygen (four-part series on teens planning to wed).

Season premieres: "Tamar & Vince," 9 p.m. Thursday, WE; "Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders: Making the Team," 9 p.m. Friday, CMT; "David Tutera: Unveiled," 9 p.m. Saturday, WE (preceded by "My Fair Wedding" special at 8 p.m.); "Sons of Anarchy," 10 p.m. Tuesday, FX (90 minutes); "The X Factor," 8 p.m. Wednesday, Fox (new judges Kelly Rowland and Paulina Rubio join Simon Cowell and Demi Lovato).

Returning: "Six Little McGhees," 10 p.m. Saturday, OWN.

Series finale: "Do No Harm," 10 p.m. Saturday, NBC (turns out there was one more episode after last week's original billed finale).

Season finales: "Wilfred," 10 p.m. Thursday, FX; "Mistresses," 9 p.m. Monday, ABC; "Breaking Pointe," 9 p.m. Monday, CW; "So You Think You Can Dance?" 8 p.m. Tuesday, Fox; "Rizzoli & Isles," 9 p.m. Tuesday, TNT (midseason finale); "Dance Moms," 8 p.m. Tuesday, Lifetime; "Who Do You Think You Are?" 9 p.m. Tuesday, TLC ("Big Bang Theory's" Jim Parsons); "Master Chef," 9 p.m. Wednesday, Fox; "Royal Pains," 9 p.m. Wednesday, USA; "Camp," 10 p.m. Wednesday, NBC (likely series finale).

Specials: "Teach," 8 p.m. Friday, CBS (year-in-the-life documentary and star-studded teacher celebration); "American Masters: Billie Jean King," 8 p.m. Tuesday, PBS; "Hero Dogs of 9 /11," 8 p.m. Tuesday, Animal Planet; "9 /11 Firehouse," 8 p.m. Wednesday, Discovery (NYC firefighters recall the attacks); "Nova: Ground Zero Supertower," 9 p.m. Wednesday, PBS (building One World Trade Center and the National September 11 Memorial Museum); "The President's Gatekeepers," 9 p.m. Wednesday, Discovery (two-night, four-hour documentary with all 20 living chiefs of staff).

Film of note: "Metropolis," 8 p.m. Friday, TCM.

Of note: "Parks and Recreation" starts in syndication at 8 p.m. Monday on WGN. It will air in primetime 8-11 p.m. Monday, 9-11 p.m. Tuesday and 9:30-11 p.m. Wednesday before settling into its regular 9-10 p.m. Monday slot. It also airs 12:30-1:30 a.m. every Monday through Saturday.

Reach Amy Robinson at flipside@wvgazette.com.


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