FX's Elmore Leonard-inspired neo-Western Justified is closing out a stellar fourth season, with a fifth already greenlit for January 2014. It just reinforces the old adage about the third time being the charm, as Justified represents television's third attempt at launching a successful Leonard-based series. The first was Maximum Bob, which came and went in 1998 and while that show has its fans, it never had the makings of a breakout hit and the author himself reportedly didn't care for it one bit. That was followed by Karen Sisco in 2003, which seemed destined for success. It had a gorgeous star (Carla Gugino), a great setting (Miami), an experienced producing team (including Danny DeVito and future FX head honcho, John Landgraf), sparkling scripts (including a handful by Leonard himself) and a high-profile primetime berth on ABC's Wednesday night line-up. The ace pilot alone deservedly inspired critical hosannas, suggesting that U.S. Marshal Karen Sisco -- previously seen in the form of Jennifer Lopez in Steven Soderbergh's equally great big-screen Leonard adaptation, Out of Sight -- would be solving crimes for years to come.
A few months ago we lamented some shows that weren't on DVD, but now it's summer and we're lacking substantive shows to watch this time of year. We'd love to retreat into a box set of an old favorite. Sadly some classic (and not-so classic) shows aren't available on DVD (at least legally). It is sort of crazy, because we can get all of Saved by the Bell: The New Class, 'Til Death, Seventh Heaven and Home Improvement, but yet The Wonder Years isn't available. Most delays are due to rights issues or companies that owned them went out of business, but still, we'd like to see someone figure it out and get these seasons out to us, stat.