Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose

Via the very-readable film/TV criticism blog The House Next Door comes a great posting by Joan O'Connell Hedman who ponders some possible reasons for the continued struggles of NBC's Friday Night Lights.

This is the best drama on television. This statement is true even with this season's rather obvious attempts to expand its audience base by making it more of a traditional prime-time soap (e.g. road trip to Mexico! dead body in the river!). Even with that tinkering this remains a tough show to categorize, a fact that is clearly driving the NBC promotions department crazy. Everyone agrees it's a good show, but how to get good ratings? This isn't a slick, violent, high-concept police procedural like CSI or an over-the-top, wink-wink dramedy like Desperate Housewives.

Friday Night Lights may be a little too gritty and real in its depiction of everyday life. Yes, there are some uncomfortable and painful truths, but there's also some poignant and uplifting triumphs. But you'll never know unless you try it.

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