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Pilot Errors

How well does a pilot indicate a show's success? TV critic Ken Tucker answers reader questions

How well does a pilot indicate a show's success?

How accurate are pilot episodes at indicating that the show will be good? Can you think of recent pilots you've enjoyed, but the series turned out to be stinkers? -- Ben Mosteller

There's more time to tinker with pilots, and their budgets tend to be higher than subsequent episodes, so they can be deceiving. I thought Fox's ''Skin'' looked promising last season, but its porn-family saga went trite fast. Reaching back a few years, the pilot for ABC's ''Lois & Clark'' was crackerjack, but soon the series became just a superhero soap opera, and that way lies cancellation and Radio Shack commercials.

(Got a TV-related question for Ken Tucker? Post it here.)

Originally posted May 28, 2004 Published in issue #767 May 28, 2004 Order article reprints

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