Months ago, while zonked on the couch waiting for my body to repair the giant holes in my gums where I once stored my four wisdoms, I caught up on some Netflix selections. After watching a few choices from my Instant Queue, I decided to check out a drama about which I’d heard good things from my momma and my friend Mike Ford.
Ryan and I had seen the previews for Kings early in the year and were intrigued. Truthfully, I’d hoped beyond all hope that it wouldn’t be another show geared toward Christians within which the bar of quality is set so low that even the most forgiving of us can’t watch. That hope was fulfilled.
Kings was a smart, well-written, fascinating, suspenseful drama and I already knew the whole story! Once I got beyond the fact that EP Michael Green got a “created by” credit for a bible story, I was held rapt for 43 minutes (I watched it on Hulu.com). The show was well shot. It was well paced and edited. Well performed and well written. The story was fascinating. And I was emotionally connected. It had an unearthly sort of raw, yet fantastical quality to it. The writting sounded shakespearean. The cinematography was beautiful. And I could watch Ian McShane for hours and hours.
Why on earth was it cancelled?
Perhaps it was because the character that Ian McShane played was carrying the series and, unfortunately, he needed an equal. The character of David was written as meek and gentle, but I think a powerful, reckless David would have been more interesting to watch. Chris Egan was a delight to watch, mind you. And what’s up with all the hot, young blond actors coming from Australia?
Perhaps it was NBC.
While the show was on the air, NBC hosted (and still hosts) a blog by the writers called The Court Historian. I thought it was a rather clever little way for the audience to sneak behind the scenes and learn about television production. The latest post, written by creator Michael Green, is a fascinating look into the cancellation of the show. He shows great restraint and with this quote:
Even if it is tempting to trash NBC, we do owe them gratitude. Writing, acting, filming is about the work, not the reward, and NBC allowed us to make the best possible show we could. They let us film in New York. They let us assemble a cast without equal on the network landscape. A group of actors who came ready every day to spin the broken-meter mouthfuls we wrote for them into song. Ian McShane, Chris Egan, Susanna Thompson, Sebastian Stan, Allison Miller, Dylan Baker, Eamonn Walker, Marlyne Afflack, Becky Ann Baker… Every one of them suffered long hours, cold nights, and still came prepared, passionate, elevating every piece of material put to them. They made us look better than we deserve.
Read the rest of the post if you’re at all interested in the inner workings of the entertainment industry.
I had considered writing a spec for Kings. But alas, that would be pointless now.
I am gonna buy some butterfly stickers. Just for kicks.
I loved this show, too. I didn’t know they were cancelling it and told my brother about it and he and his wife got hooked on it. If I remember correctly, if you’re trying to get work on a specific show, they don’t want you to submit spec scripts of that show, but of similar shows, so maybe you could still do one for Kings. I’d like to read it!
That’s true that you’re not supposed to submit specs to the show of the show you want to write on, but you’re also not supposed to submit specs of shows that are no longer on the air. I thought I had a 6 month grace period but my writing mentors tell me that I should move on. 😉