Dead on Arrival

What Lone Star's cancellation means to a conned Texas film industry

What Lone Star's cancellation means to a conned Texas film industry

After airing only two episodes, Fox has laid to rest the Dallas-shot TV series Lone Star.

Its tombstone should read, “Dead on Arrival,” and the cast and crew in Texas are justifiably crying into their beer.

Despite its early critical acclaim (Lone Star received some the best reviews of any of the new fall shows) its premiere night ratings were disastrously low. Some of us thought there wouldn’t even be a second airing. The Internet and Facebook were burning up with rumors. This series meant a lot to the Dallas-area economy and to the Texas film industry in general.

When Fox announced the second episode would air after all, as planned, show creator Kyle Killen wrote on his blog, “For us to survive, we’re going to have to pull off a minor miracle,” and he urged everyone to spread the word to build viewership.

Texas talent agent Linda McAlister, who has had several clients cast in Lone Star, posted a Facebook alert to help drive viewers to the show. So did others.

Unfortunately, the second episode was 23 percent lower in eyeballs than the first. That, my friends, is worse than dead.

The good news is that five episodes were completed (and those babies aren’t cheap) so perhaps they’ll continue shooting and find a way to reach an audience. Houston casting agent Dolores Jackson likes to think positive, “Fingers crossed they do something constructive with the episodes filmed and maybe complete the first season arc. Perhaps air online or go straight to DVD? I know it’s a long shot, but here’s to hope!”

Who knows why a show with such potential, according to critics anyway, bites the bullet so early? In this case, according to Variety, Lone Star’s cancellation is one of the earliest in recent memory.

Could it be that Monday night was a bad night for the drama? Could it be that the premise of a con man living two separate lives — with two gorgeous wives in two Texas towns — wasn’t appealing enough? Could it be that viewers didn’t want to watch a bad guy screw good people out of their money? (Uh, they had no problem with The Sopranos.)

No, the show is gone, I believe, because it wasn’t on the air long enough for anyone to know it was there.

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Lone Star lasted two episodes,, making it one of the most quickly cancelled shows of all time.