I think part of the problem is that the episodes are just 22 minutes long and yet packs a lot of content in those 22 minutes. In fact, I had thought it was a hour show when I was watching it with Chelle and it wasn't until I snagged the first episode that I discovered it wasn't. I think this might actually be an interesting byproduct of how cutthroat tv has gotten in the past decade or so. After all, I'm sure we all have shows that we loved which were canceled before its time. If nothing else, I'm sure there are at least a bunch of you Firefly nuts out there still frothing at the mouth. Well, that sort of quick draw, hair trigger action has meant that the remaining shows on tv have had to evolve into leaner, meaner, and better version of themselves in order to survive and not get mauled and dragged down like an impala with its neck broken. Think of this as Darwin's theory of evolution applied to network tv. It's not like the old days where a shitty show would be allowed to run season after season after season until the actors and writers finally find a formula that worked. If you need an example, Cheers would be a good one or even Family Ties which I ended up loving. Now, it's either you hit the mark right from the start or you're tossed out on your ass and your weepy fans have to buy your dozen episodes on dvd to ever see it again.
Anyway, all of this fine tuning means that you feel like you get more bang for your buck in 22 minutes. It's easy to say, 'Oh, it's just 22 minutes. I'll watch another episode.' And a half dozen episodes latter, you realize almost three hours have gone by so you tell yourself it was too late to do whatever it was you wanted to do and you should just watch a few more. I'm currently halfway through the third season, which if you think about it, is around 25 hours worth of viewing and only halfway through at this point. So far, it's been pretty spiffy. I like the storylines and the habit of jumping and cutting from scene to scene to fill in events. I also like the characters though I feel a little schizophrenic about it. Maybe it's just me but it seems that the character consistency is often a bit shaky. I can't quite figure out if Robin is both a sweet person and a jerk, or a jerk transforming slowly into a sweet person. She seems to flip back and forth based almost totally on what would be funny at the time. For some reason I find her character more troubling than Barney, who's obviously just there for comic relief and as a foil. Not to mention the Price is Right thing was Legen....wait for it....dary. As much as he would drive you crazy, I'm starting to think that everyone should have a Barney in their lives, if for no other reason than to keep life interesting. Just remember, anything which doesn't kill you automatically makes a great story 5 years down the line. Of course, if it does kill you then you're screwed.
So far, there hasn't been much info put out about the Mother, and I'm curious on how they're going to wrap it up. I read on wiki that if the show had been canceled after the first season, Victoria would have been the Mother, which sounds spiffy to me. She was absolutely adorable. I'm sad to see her character doesn't make a return even after when the whole baking scholarship thing should have ended. It must be sort of hard to plan a storyline like this when you're never sure how many seasons you'll have. You can't let the secret out too soon, but you definitely want to be able to do it before the show ends and preferably as more than a 1-episode BAM ending. About the only way to set some groundwork is to have it be someone who was already in the show and simply returns to win in the end, but I think that's been pretty Jossed. I almost wish they would just film the last 3-4 episodes in advance to be pulled out whenever the series ends rather than running the risk of a rushed and crappy end. I can only imagine it's probably hard to get the studio to greenlight the money for something like that and pay for it in advance, not to mention adjusting for unforseen story events like if someone squirts our a rugrat in the meantime or drastically changes somehow.
Anyway, it looks like I'm going to be trucking my way through the series for at least another few days. Till then, most everything else has been put on hold. It's like my own particular form of OCD.