Thursday, May 24, 2007

Lost: Interruptions

One of the most interesting things about watching the fabulous "Lost" finale-- "Through the Looking Glass" --last night was that the local weatherman seemed to have learned a valuable lesson.

I wish I had the citation, but a while back now, Christine read an article in The New York Times Magazine, I believe, noting that local TV stations have invested heavily in their weather radar systems and love opportunities to trot them out.

That of course leads to overwrought reporting. "Get in your back yard and dig, dig for your lives!" the weatherman's given to shout on cloudy days. "A storm cellar is your only hope when the orange and green Rorshack pattern reaches our area! Go now!"

So anyway, couple of weeks ago an episode of "Lost" called "The Brig" was the offering of the evening. Unfortunately it got cloudy around the time the show was set to begin.

The weatherman came on the air right around the end of the re-run of the previous week's episode and started talking about where it might begin to rain next.

He put up video of what the station's parking lot had looked like minutes earlier. I'm not sure why. Basically you could see a few branches waving in the breeze.

Lost hope
As the top of the hour neared, Christine asked me to stop suggesting so loudly that the weatherman was overweight and that his parents might not have been legally wed.

As minutes ticked by it became apparent he had no plans to shut up in time for us to find out how things were going with Locke.

I finally gave up and bought the episode the next day from iTunes. I'm easy going except when I'm not.

So anyway, flash forward ;-) and last night, minutes until the finale was to start, thunderstorms started rolling through our area.

Miraculously, there was a crawl across the bottom of the screen, and a tiny little weather map, but no interruption.

The show began and played on without a hitch. Then at a commercial break! the weatherman came on and said: "Don't worry you won't miss any of `Lost' but I thought you'd like to know there's a Queen Mother of a thunderheadabout to hit Smithburg."

They gave up commercial air time. Apparently some people didn't reserve their remarks for their living rooms.

And the station listened. Democracy in action.

They finally figured out interrupting a vastly popular serial drama--known for its surprises and plot twists--with trivialities is not a way to win the hearts and minds of the viewership.

And that was danged near as cool as Hurley driving the VW microbus to the rescue!


Charles Gramlich said...

I rather wish I'd heard your comments on the weatherman. But yeah, democracy in action. Sometimes the little guy wins.

Sidney said...

I guess they were a bit colorful. By the way, my prediction that Locke would live proved true in the finale.

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