Q: After all the hype and interviews for ABC’s “The Assets,” the series has gone missing. What happened?
A: The spy drama, a collaboration between ABC’s entertainment and news divisions, premiered to woeful ratings.
And the numbers dropped in the second week. ABC then dropped the series in favor of “Shark Tank” reruns, which promptly drew more viewers.
ABC Entertainment Group President Paul Lee has said the remaining six episodes of “The Assets” will be shown at some point, either on the air or online.
At this writing, ABC.go.com has episodes online, but only the two that aired.
Q: I read in your column that “The Glades” hasn’t been renewed. How can they leave fans of the show hanging like that? Will they have one more episode to show if Jim lives and gets married, and who shot him? That’s a terrible way to end a series.
A: My mail over the years often includes notes from readers left hanging by abruptly canceled shows. (Some shows, like “Breaking Bad,” know well ahead of time when they are going to end, but we are talking here about shows that are simply told they’re done.)
Whether they get an appropriate ending depends on how much notice they get, and whether their network or studio is willing to invest in a wrapup.
Sometimes series get enough warning that they can come up with a finale; “Last Resort” was a relatively recent example of that.
Other times shows sense that the end could be coming, and can craft episodes that will serve as an ending if they are done; “Community” did that more than once, and so did “Army Wives,” (Another show, “One Tree Hill,” deliberately built a huge cliffhanger into a season finale with the hope that fans would demand that it keep going.)
But there are still shows that have completed one set of episodes before learning there won’t be another.
“Deadwood” was one example, ending before it planned, and leaving series mastermind David Milch to explain what could have come next in an extra on the DVD and Blu-ray collections.
As for “The Glades,” it is done, and I know of no plans to wrap up the stories. It recalls another series, “Under Suspicion,” that ended its first season with the main character, a detective named Phillips, being shot. Then the series was canceled.
The show’s creator, Jacqueline Zambrano, said Phillips would have recovered if the series continued. But since the show was dead, so was Phillips.
For “The Glades,” then, you should just imagine your own ending.