|Index||10 reviews in total|
One of the few shows of the 90's I really loved.Quirky,eccentric and difficult to classify,"Strange luck" followed the adventures of freelance photographer Chance Harper,who is afflicted/blessed with,well,strange luck,which leads him into all sorts of odd and at times dangerous situations.A lot of the charm of the series was thanks to D.B.Sweeney,a low key and enormously likable actor,who breathes life into the slightly seedy,lovable Chance,denizen of one of TV's weirdest rundown apartments,and eternal wearer of an ancient overcoat.Angie is Chance's friend,a counter assistant at the second rate eatery where he hangs out.Probably too odd for popular success,Fox soon pulled the plug on Chance and his overcoat. Should become a cult show.
I really enjoyed this show, too, although fans of today's TV attempts at realism in police and medical dramas might find it "unrealistic." Mainly, it was just a very nice, neighborly world with its own intrusions of intrigue, and the way the random "chance" happenings played into the plot were usually pretty inventive. There were simple romances, but no "who's bedding whom, who's breaking up?" devices to "spice up" the plot. The third episode, "Last Chance," remains one of my favorites because of the character of the guy on death row and the other guy who struggled to take responsibility for his own crime after years of keeping his secret. The song that covered the climax and the way the climax was resolved were, in my mind, unusual for TV drama-light because it used a heavy dose of irony and left you trying to decide if it was a happy ending or not. "Healing Hands" was another personal favorite, even with the odd "faith healer for the guy who looks like Stephen Hawkins" crime plot, because Chance's parents got an expanded role, James Cromwell and the other guest actors played nice characters, Mary Black's "The Holy Ground" was used as the soundtrack for the sentimental wrapup, and I liked the way things were resolved for the characters. I wish the series would have run longer if for no other reason than to see "Healing Hands" revisited with a followup episode. At the least, it would be nice to see Fox pick this up for official DVD release while it's trotting out so many other series.
I remember watching this show when it was first on. D.B.
was a photographer who had "strange luck." It didn't matter if it
was good or bad. It was just "strange." The plot revolves around Chance Harper, or Alex Sanders, and his search for his identity. As a child, Chance/Alex, survived a plane crash in which everyone on board, including his mother, were killed. Too bad it was
canceled. It was just starting to get good.
I was a real fan of this show. I first watched it because it came before The X-Files. Gradually, I got caught up in the whole mythology of this show, too. It had all the quirkiness, great characters, and paranoia that made the X-Files great. There were even hints of a crossover episode (as there was, recently, with X-Files and Millennium). Then suddenly, there was a reveal-all episode and the series ended on a sour note. What happened? How could such a fun show not have gotten the needed ratings? Let's have a moment of silence for a creative show that could have been so much more.
This show was one of the many casualties Fox incurred when they shifted
X-FILES to Sundays and tried to fill it's old Friday slot with more
quirky shows. This show was great but Fox forgot that X-Files took time
to build an audience; they canceled it after less than 10 airings, I
believe. DB Sweeney and Francis Fisher were very appealing, but the
real star was THE WRITING! Clever plots, centering on luck and
coincidence, and good dialog.
I guess Fox didn't think it was a REAL network until they started killing potential late-breakout hits with early cancellation decisions... the one moronic TRUE indicator of a network exec at work!
An adult version of creator Karl Schaeffer's "Eerie, Indiana," Strange Luck mixes film noir, a smattering of the supernatural, and just plain goofiness (two brothers fight over a potato that looks like Elvis) that seems to be mocking the very type of contrived plot "coincidences" that most shows rely on for their serious plots. Catch it if you can.
I miss the series. It was full of incredible coincidences which were
continually interesting. The strangeness was the main attraction, other
than the appealing cast of characters. I was always impressed by the
inventiveness of the writers in weaving tales of intrigue. Something
new and fresh which was unapologetic about coincidence. Always
A favorite episode contained the opening scene of Harper fishing from a boat when he begins to hear something far off, before we do. Finally a body falls from the sky into the lake and the story begins. This image immediately borough to mind the adventure of DB Cooper, and here is DB Sweeney playing the protagonist who unravels the mystery.
coincidence fascinates all of us. we even have a word for the
coincidences that seem meaningful to us: synchronized. whether or not
we necessarily believe in a greater power or flow of the universe, it
is fun to try to back track from the coincidence and see the actions
that bring us to that brink of oddness and wonder.
"Strange Luck" was someone's idea of watching the pathway from the random to the seemingly ordered and predestined moments in peoples lives. Chance Harper(DB Sweeney) had the odd fortune to be riding the wave. DBS is a brilliant actor, understated and a lot of fun to watch even if the material ain't so great(ie, the cutting edge). His development of the character as a guy on the outside watching the oddities around him take place, trying to decide whether he believes in what is happening to him, is outstanding. The writing is great, every character nicely rounded as the show progressed. It is a shame that it was dropped after only one season.
The Best thing about this show was its absolute refusal to make judgments about what was happening to Chance. he appears to be a conduit, but there is nothing great about that, because for every good thing he connects with, something comes along that shatters all perspective. Balance between "good" and "bad" coincidence is maintained. The basis of the series then becomes, 1) his attempts to free himself from this "destiny"(if that is what it is), and 2)the question of affect he may or may not be having on those around him, and 3) would all of this be happening anyway if he weren't around to witness it.
though i doubt the existence of meaningful coincidence, i have, myself, wondered if things would be happening the same way if i weren't around to see them. humans bend the fabric of reality in all sorts of small ways, just by interacting with it, and this show explored the possibility of that. I was disappointed to see it go.
Fox made a mistake, but it wasn't the first mistake made by a television company, and it won't be the last. i would definitely buy the dvds if they were ever released, especially episodes that may not have been aired, even though they were completed.
...but I guess the ratings weren't good enough to keep it on the
"they" were to put the episodes on a DVD, I would certainly pick up a copy
(or two) and share it with those who didn't get the "Chance" to see it.
If it ever comes to some cable channel in reruns, you should try and catch it.
I've only found two times in my life where a show that I really liked was canned and no more info of ever seeing it again and that was "Key West" and "strange luck". I am a bit bi est with "Key West" because I went to high school there, and I was living in Boise when that came out. I would tell my friends the strange true stories about some of the places that they were seeing on TV. But with a bit of my own strange luck, I ended up back in Key West. Now, it is true... there is not much more to do in Key West other than drinking and fishing.... and I always got sea-sick so what did that leave for me?! However, every Friday night, my friend Sean and I would meet up to watch Strange Luck and X-Files before going to party at the place we worked. We were always serious about partying, but we had to see Strange Luck first, and that is saying something to the importance of priorities of a Conch! But why should I ever get mad at Fox for the death of a show like this?! Hey "reality shows" are very important to people like me who grew up in a place were reality dose not exist!? If I wanted that kind of crap it seems more logical to never watch TV, just go live it right? That way I could be a star. I'd by this show on DVD in a second, yet guess what else.... they wont even offer it to sell??!! What's up with that? I wonder if it violates the Patiot Act or something.
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