Of all the bad television programming decisions that have been made in the last two years, the highlight, the ultimate bad decision was the “breaks” that split down entire series over a season causing severe audience losses in even top shows like 24 and Lost and leading to the cancellation of Jericho. It was suffice it to say a bad idea. A very, very bad idea.
Now the SciFi Channel has decided to improve on it by splitting down Battlestar Galactica’s final season of 20 episodes, half by half, with 10 episodes airing in 2008 and 10 episodes airing in 2009. Clearly the SciFi Channel is worried about not having a tent pole series that people actually like and wants two seasons of Battlestar Galactica without actually paying for them. This is actually an even worse idea.
The SciFi Channel suits (and these are the same sorts of people who left David Peckinpah in charge of Sliders) seem to think that Battlestar Galactica has such a built in audience that they’ll be happy to show up a year later after only 10 episodes. Considering the audience falloff from Battlestar Galactica’s second season after the long break, the wake up call obviously has not hit yet.
Battlestar Galactica is not the work of genius that many fans like to pretend it is but this kind of treatment is certain to diminish its audience even further.