It’s over for CBS’s Jericho

March 25, 2008 at 10:52 pm 1 comment

I don’t think I’ve ever blogged so much about one topic before. Anyway, the series finale for Jericho just aired in the West Coast, and I have to say that it’s everything I expected. I wish there was at least one surprise, but the creative team behind the show really played it safe, but that’s a good thing since I’m sure the majority of the fans will be happy.


Major Beck, the only new regular that’s been added this season, was a smart addition. When Season 2 started, the events in the show had become so big, the town of Jericho couldn’t possibly hold it. I loved the direction the show was taking, since one of the obvious questions on the minds of fans would be, “So what’s going on with the rest of the country?” Beck represents a strong and organized military, but a military that doesn’t know what country to fight for. Beck wants to do the right thing, but he never gets a straight answer from his superiors.

While the parallels to the Iraq war are obvious, I don’t believe they were trying to shove anything down the viewers’ throats. The one theme I picked up on throughout the season was one of rebellion and fighting to keep what is yours, two themes that are very American. This country was born from an armed rebellion, then fought another war with itself in order to keep the nation together. I guess it’s only fitting that the end of the series led up to, but obviously did not show, the start of a new American Civil War between Allied States and the United States. And because I’m an optimist, I’m going to assume that the Ohio-based United States, now joined by the Republic of Texas, kicked ass and put the country back together.

Well, the show was great while it lasted. I know there are still theories out there about how another network can pick up the show, but with the way they ended things on the finale, I’m inclined to say, “Let it be.” I just wish that more shows had writing as good as this (the only one I can think of is Battlestar Galactica, whose final season airs next week). So long, Jericho, we hardly knew ya.

Below is an excerpt of an interview with Carol Barbee, one of the producers or the show. Will viewers have any burning questions coming out of the alternate ending/series finale?
Carol Barbee:

Let me see…. I can tell you that in the original ending, Hawkins has to sacrifice himself to let Jake get away with the bomb and get it to Texas so it can be tested and prove that they were telling the truth. Texas would then swing their support to Columbus and defeat Cheyenne. Does Hawkins mortally sacrifice himself, or just let himself get captured?

Well, he gets captured but he’s also shot…. He’s pretty messed up, and Jake feels like he’s leaving him for dead. So we show you where he’s taken and you see that the mission for the next season is, “We have to go rescue Hawkins and we have to stop these [bad] guys.” When they see the alternate ending, it certainly completes the story from this season and tells you everything you need to know to have understood Season 2. It just doesn’t point to that next mission. You meet John Smith, the guy who’s been pulling the strings. It’s [played by] Xander Berkeley (24). You’ve heard him on phone calls, and Hawkins is surprised by who he is and where he is. So you know who John Smith is, you know who planned the attacks, you know why, you know how…. Now it’s just a matter of making things right in the United States?

Right. We would have moved on to the next level of a civil war between the Cheyenne government and the Columbus government. But if your readers do have any more burning questions, let me know! If Jericho does find a new home on another channel, will Season 3 work off the alternate ending or the original cliff-hanger edit?

What we would do is take the information that is in the original ending, and that would be the opener for the next season. When we leave them at the end of the original ending, we’ve got Hawkins back and he’s OK, but we still need to go fight the larger fight. I’ve always said that the alternate ending doesn’t wrap up the series. It just lets you know that everyone is OK and it closes out this seven-episode arc. But we could definitely keep it going!


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