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Weeds Could Make Showtime Must-Pay-for Television


i wanna be cool too!
Oct 22, 2005
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USA -- Not only is "Weeds" the best series on "Showtime" -- run out immediately and get the first-season DVD, and do not delay in that quest -- but it's also one of the best shows on television, end of story.
Ah, but when you're dealing with Showtime, that can never be good enough. People want to speculate on whether "Weeds" will bust the pay cable channel into the must-buy arena now dominated by HBO. Many people who are paid to ponder these issues also like to wonder aloud whether "Weeds" is the series that will open the door for more great series, writers and actors to flood into the Showtime family, thus making it particularly hard on working families with good taste to meet their monthly cable nut.

The answer is, don't worry about it.

Greatness will out, and when that doesn't work as it relates to the business end of television, there's always the DVD. Let's not overly concern ourselves with how "Weeds" helps Showtime and let's certainly not compare it to "The Sopranos."

Expectations are a *****, and it's hard enough to live up to the relentless praise of critics, much less be the series that turns Avis into Hertz in the pay cable universe. Besides, that only detracts from speaking to the merits of television's best pot comedy -- and they are many.

First, it's important not to think of "Weeds" as a comedy (some might say dramedy) about marijuana and, specifically, a suburban widow who turns to dealing to maintain her lifestyle. That's merely the jumping-off point, the neat trick that sets up a series with a much bigger, less easily categorized agenda. Showtime makes the pot jokes and allusions go very, very far, but it's debatable whether the series wouldn't reach a wider audience by an ad campaign that separates the smoke from the substance. In that regard, it's easy to think, having never seen the series, that "Weeds" uses marijuana as a crutch to hipness and too-easy descriptions of suburban life and a less-than-upstanding existence.

Note: Weeds: Comedy. 10 p.m. Mondays, Showtime.

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