Wednesday, March 14, 2012

HBO Kills Third Horse and Euthanizes "Luck"

A third horse has died on the set of the HBO original series Luck leading the network to cancel the underperforming television drama. Two horses were hurt and subsequently euthanized during filming of the first season of the horse-racing centered series, and now with filming of the second season underway, another of the star animals has been put down due to injury. Citing that "safety is paramount," HBO has pulled the plug completely on the project.

Considering that Luck is executive produced by David Milch, who also created and produced the critically acclaimed and moderately popular HBO series Deadwood, I had high hopes for the series.

Sadly, Luck fell far short of crafting the kind of compelling story lines and vibrant characters that populated Deadwood, and the series has been a major disappointment. Critics described Luck as "impenetrable" and "a drag," and based on its ratings struggle, the rest of the viewing world agrees.

If Luck had been a ratings blockbuster, rather than declining to barely half a million viewers weekly, I imagine HBO would have found a way to continue filming while keeping its animal actors safe. As it stands now though, putting the series down is probably better for viewers, and definitely better for horses.

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