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Posted on Thu, Apr. 07, 2005

`Titanic' listed, but their hopes get sunk




If it's Thursday, this must be the TV mailbag...

Q: The movie ``Titanic'' was listed in Channels with Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet on WE on March 27. We tuned in and there was a different movie ``Titanic'' with Catherine Zeta-Jones. I didn't know there were two movies of ``Titanic'' made in recent years. Please explain.

A: A bunch of people dying on a big, sinking ship is just the sort of thing that producers believe will attract an audience -- especially when they don't have to pay anyone for the rights to the story. So, according to the Internet Movie Database (www.imdb.com), there are nine different movies with the title Titanic.

The 1997 Oscar winner is, of course, the most famous of those. But the year before that came out, there was a made-for-TV version starring, among others, Zeta-Jones, Peter Gallagher and George C. Scott.

This next letter is a reply to another reader's complaints about The Office.

Q: My husband and I read with great interest the comments regarding the new series ``The Office'' and were disappointed to learn some people thought it was not very good. All I can say is these people just don't get what the whole series is about. It is a parody of what goes on in most offices, is done with tongue-in-cheek and irony. We love it!!

Please see Mail, E3

Mail

`Office,' `Eyes,' `Miracles,' more

Continued from Page E1

A: I like it, too. But there are still other folks out there who don't get this Americanized version of a British comedy.

Q: I totally agree with the (letter) writer that ``The Office'' is not the least bit funny. I don't know where you have worked but I never worked with such individuals, especially a boss like this one. This show has been promoted as the greatest comedy ever -- and it certainly does STINK.

A: That letter writer at least admitted to watching the show twice. And love it or hate it, you should give it a chance.

Now here's a reader's thoughts about another series.

Q: I watched the ``Eyes'' premiere, with Tim Daly and thought it was excellent. I really hope the show is a hit. It was unique, tricky, intriguing, yet light; plus I'm sure I'll enjoy the ongoing plot of the main characters, too. I look forward to reading your thoughts on the program. I hope you like it as much as I did.

A: Can't say that I do. I can understand your enjoyment. I like parts of the show, including the snap in a lot of the dialogue and some of the cast. But it feels too deliberately light to me, as if it was satisfied with being an amusing hour and nothing more. So I don't mind it, but I won't be setting a video recorder for it, either.

Q: What ever happened to the short-lived series starring Skeet Ulrich as a young man who grew up living in a Jesuit brotherhood, who seemed to be cursed with spiritual powers? Seems like I'm the only one who watched the show, as no one remembers the name. I liked it, and wonder if it will be resurrected (no pun intended) with all the interest in ``last days'' phenomena.

Miracles and aired on ABC in 2003. The series itself is not coming back but the original episodes are coming out on DVD on April 19. And NBC is trying its own version of the ``last days'' in the miniseries Revelations, which will premiere Wednesday. I'll have a review in Sunday's Channels.

Q: My son would like to know if NBC will be showing ``Father of the Pride'' anymore. He really liked the show, but it hasn't been on for quite a while.

A: The show did not live up to NBC's expectations and has ended production. But the episodes that were made will be released in a DVD set in June.

Q: On March 31, in response to a question about ABC selecting men as ``Person of the Week,'' you wrote about ABC featuring Rachael Scdoris, a legally blind woman who participated in the 2005 Iditarod. No musher, whether male or female, deserves this recognition. Instead, ABC should have condemned Scdoris for forcing her dogs to run in the Iditarod, a race with a long, well-documented history of dog deaths, illnesses and injuries.

A: This e-mail came from Margery Glickman, director of a group called the Sled Dog Action Coalition. It contained much more material than I have quoted here, and was followed by three other e-mails documenting the group's concerns about the Iditarod. As such, it demonstrates the Law of Unintended Mailbag Consequences: I wrote about ABC's Person of the Week and tripped over someone who has an issue with the Iditarod.

Do you have a question or a comment for the TV mailbag? Write to me at the Beacon Journal, 44 E. Exchange St., Akron, OH 44309, or by e-mail to rheldenfels@thebeaconjournal.com. You can also post questions on www.ohio.com.

Letters may be edited. No phoned-in questions, please.


R.D. Heldenfels writes about television for the Beacon Journal, and in a new Weblog you can link through www.ohio.com. Contact him at 330-996-3582 or rheldenfels@thebeaconjournal.com.

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