TV Review: Make or Break TV 1.5 – Blade: The Series

Blade: The Series is a nice change-up for Make or Break TV.  This time, lack of viewer and/or network/syndicator interest isn’t the reason the show died.  Here, Blade: The Series was earning credible ratings for Spike.  Crucially, they weren’t nip/tuck, The Closer or Monk-level ratings, so better in Spike’s eyes to focus on the increasingly trendy UFC and launch new drama shows sometime down the road.

After three episodes, Spike TV felt Blade: The Series wasn’t edgy enough for the network. Blade: The Series initially didn’t have a second unit for more action sequences, which is a curious omission in a series based on a blockbuster action film franchise.  Former Spike TV executive vice-president Pancho Mansfield is given a bit of face time, trying to justify not renewing the show.  He comes across as a face in the crowd, and executives tend to have that quality.

Spike’s horrible scheduling ruined Blade: The Series‘ chance for renewal, as Make or Break TV states.  Why would Spike executives air an episode, then air the same episode immediately afterwards?  TVTropolis’ scheduling of Make or Break TV is almost as bad, but TVTropolis didn’t hype the show’s premiere one-hundredth as much as Spike did the two-hour Blade: The Series pilot.

Kirk ‘Sticky Fingaz’ Jones, Blade: The Series‘ title character and former member of rap group Onyx, comes across as intermittently insightful and stupid.  He’ll point out that Buffy the Vampire Slayer took a few seasons to catch on, then complain about how Blade ‘never got none.’  He seems to be having the most fun with his interview, so that’s a plus.

The other interviewees aren’t as notable, although former New Line Television vice president Jon Kroll has a good anecdote about how David S. Goyer’s pitch for Blade: The Series was enhanced by laryngitis.  Apparently whispering made Blade: The Series seem more mysterious to Spike TV.

I can’t vouch for the veracity of Kroll’s anecdote – Goyer admits he had laryngitis while pitching Blade: The Series, but Spike TV was probably more impressed by the Blade film series’ habit of making money.  The promise of making money hand-over-fist helps sell any pitch.

Make or Break TV seems to be improving week by week.  The third act lead-outs of each four-act episode are still predictable.  MoBTV deals with shows that were cancelled after a season or two, so the “will X be saved from cancellation” cliffhanger is pointless.  The show isn’t forcing drama like it was previously, so the writing’s getting better.

Make or Break TV could benefit from TVTropolis’ website identifying which episode will air next week.  Wikipedia has proven a useless guide.  It would be nice for TVTropolis to have a more informative schedule overall, that and fix spelling mistakes on its site.  One sometimes has to wonder what the point of TVTropolis is beyond housing Family Guy reruns seven hundred times a week.  There’s only so much to see of Peter Griffin’s sideboob.

C. Archer
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