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29 June 2008 @ 09:42 pm
Flavors of First Season  
[Crossposted from forkni-l.  In Saturday's digest, a long-time listmember reminisced about running dual VCRs to discover the differences between the Canadian and US cuts long ago, and pondered doing it again now to pin down what's missing from the DVDs, in response to what wiliqueen and I discovered missing from "I Will Repay" on the DVD.]

That would be a great favor to the fandom!  I would follow your progress eagerly.  But I'm afraid it might even take three TVs this time: US cut, Canadian cut and the DVDs.  Four if we can circulate the first-run German cut.  (Is it lucky or unlucky that only first season comes in quite so many flavors?)

When the first-season DVDs came out, I checked "Last Act" to reassure myself that no footage was missing, even though the run-times clearly indicated the first-run Canadian cuts.  I picked "Last Act" because it's peculiar in having some footage that aired only in the US as well as some that aired only in Canada (and, besides, it's so good! ~g~).  At a friend's home in '97 -- traveling far for a con -- I saw a fan-vid that used footage of Erica's ghost in the Caddie, footage I had never before seen.  When I got home, almost the first thing I did was post to the list in all excited curiosity.  In a few days of back and forth, we established that I wasn't the only one who hadn't seen that footage, but many people had seen it, and apparently it had aired in the US but not in most Canadian broadcasts.  That thread wandered into other notorious missing bits, like the scene in "False Witness" present-day in which Janette learns Nick killed Lacroix (not broadcast in the US), but Erica's ghost in the Caddie stayed the ultimate benchmark for me, personally.

I should have checked more episodes, obviously. :-)  Why, why, why would anyone cut Nick and Lacroix's exchange about souls from the flashbacks of "False Witness"?  Madness!

Golly, but I love first season.  I rewatched "Fatal Mistake" recently, and kept thinking that while it was perhaps the least admired episode of first season, and surely suffers two painful script burbles as well as arguably one of the worst necks-of-the-week ever, it is nevertheless smart, well-constructed and satisfying.