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Ronald D. Moore's CARNIVALE 1.6!!

I am – Hercules!!

Previously, on Coaxial News Talkback:

“Would this be the same Ronald D. Moore whose ‘reimagining’ of Battlestar Galactica is the same one giving us a female Starbuck and that Edward James Olmos emphatically warns all original fans to steer clear of? My interest in ‘Carnivale’ just went south faster than the runtime most of these shows will probably get.” – Phimseto

"Deep Space Nine" vet Ronald D. Moore, showrunner and lead creative force behind “Carnivale,” did write the upcoming “Battlestar Galactica” miniseries, and will, in fact, serve us up some fabulous actress in a tight-fitting flight suit and call her Starbuck. (And he's right about Eddie Olmos too: the new Adama warns all fans of the original to ignore the mini and buy that shiny new Cylon DVD box set instead.)

So “Carnivale,” which airs its sixth installment (and the latest penned by Moore himself) this evening, can’t possibly be any good, can it?

Take up valuable bandwidth with your predictions, reactions and opinions.

I am – Hercules!!

Looking for bumper stickers, plush toys and girls’ underwear covered with cute cartoon double-amputees? Visit The Herc Store!

Readers Talkback
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  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:07 p.m. CST


    by Lawash1980

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:10 p.m. CST

    HBO's Best Series

    by PiratedTV

    This, in my opinion is HBO's best show yet. Taking their time exploring both the good and bad in every character in the show is a brilliant idea, and although more people haven't latched onto this show like HBO's other fares I will take this to my grave as HBO's best show yet.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:14 p.m. CST

    Haven't seen yet ...

    by Itchy

    Any good ? I saw some nudie screen caps of Carla Gallo. Let me know when the chick who played Rachel from undeclared guest stars and the 2 of them do some nudie carnie action, a la Kristy McNichol and Sherilyn Fenn in Two Moon Junction. Rowrrr.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:18 p.m. CST

    I just want to see Barbeau naked.

    by Fred

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:33 p.m. CST


    by evilreno

    i went in thinking it was going to be horrid and almost didn't even watch it, but now i'm enthralled. i think it's excellent. although, i wonder if some things are part of the story or are just there to freak out the 'normal' viewing audience.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 8:35 p.m. CST

    It is very Vertigo

    by PiratedTV

    I agree w/ you 100%, and that's not a bad thing. The storyline, characters, heck, even the cinematography tends to be based on still pictures, with gorgeous composition, that looks like they were pulled from the DC Adult Line.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 9:02 p.m. CST

    Thanks, Herc...

    by Johnny Smith

    ...for this talkback.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 9:06 p.m. CST

    well, I'm convinced, I'm gonna try to download some episodes

    by Tall_Boy

    and as for the revamped Battlestar, I'm gonna watch it cuz I have zero connection with the original

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 9:39 p.m. CST

    midget can't act

    by yawning

    no one here really can - even ganz feels third rate. reminds me of watching small town public theater...

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 9:47 p.m. CST

    too much midget on the show

    by yawning

    aimless plot; the whole carnie justice story line is wince inducing lameness. whoever handled the casting on this fumbled badly - not a single charismatic character.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 10:15 p.m. CST

    The Man From Another Place

    by Purple Toupee

    I want to see Samson talk backwards and dance. Kyle MacLaughlan guest stars next week as a pie-and-coffee-loving FBI agent. Still haven't decided if I like Carnivale, yet I can't stop watching...Mr. Crabs kicks ass on that show.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 10:21 p.m. CST


    by foochuck

    Was that BILL MOSELEY's voice I heard in Episode 6 of Carnivale as they were in town looking for the townspeople? This show is terrific. My interest in it grows each week. If you haven't given it a chance yet check out the first 7 episodes on HBO on Nov. 2 !

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 10:30 p.m. CST

    Finally! A Carnivale talkback! Now if I can only watch it.

    by Han Ol' Buddy

    Have to wait for it to be available on bit torrent. Then I can partake in the discussion.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 10:45 p.m. CST

    Goddammit where is my Buffy talkback

    by ThingsThatTimDog

    Just thought I would return the fucking favor.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 11:01 p.m. CST

    bizarro jerry

    by drstinkfinger

    Is Feldman going to be in the next town?

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 11:14 p.m. CST

    At some point am I supposed to know what this show is the fuck A

    by Chastain-86

    Christ. Throw me a bone, it's been six goddamned episodes. Enough.

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 11:28 p.m. CST


    by casmcthorn

    I liked this episode. I believe they are all on acid in the sixties and are tripping thinking its the dust bowl and there are carnies. Everyone knows bad acid trips+midgets its a fact.By and by Samson ruls!!!

  • What the f*ck is going on? Who's really bad and who is really good? I'm not sure the Preacher is good. He's conflicted. I mean he checked out his sister in the shower. Great acting though. The ghost town was cool, but what's the purpose? Fuuu**ckkk....what's it all about????

  • Oct. 19, 2003, 11:54 p.m. CST

    Ok answer me this

    by Whedon

    If the bartender knew every person in Babylon were ghosts then why the hell did he stay in town? His "I always try but never make it" excuse doesn't cut it with me. And I'm telling you all now that Nick Staul's character has the power for evil and not father Justin, just wait and see. His dad burying pickaxes in people doesn't send of warning bells with you guys? Oh and Herc could you get another Angel;Mutent Enemy talkback going again, come on you caved to their whining.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 12:18 a.m. CST

    Damn it..I have to wait until Wednesday to see this...Alias is o

    by Russman

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 1:07 a.m. CST

    better late than never eh?

    by GrandoCarIissian

    halfway through there's finally a carnivale talkback? ah well. the show's confusing and pretentious, and the first couple episodes had me completely lost. but when they got to the revival, things finally got more interesting. and then when brother justin started giving people visions, and he did the darth vader joke on that one guy. and when the girl was killed so suddenly and unexpectedly. and who (or what) exactly is Management? I don't know what any of it really means, but I'm expecting it to add up to something special. at the end of this series, everyone will either a) think this was an amazing show or b) feel incredibly let down or cheated. i'm hoping for a. also, i think brother justin's story will be a much more compelling version of a good man falling to the "dark side," so to speak, then the whole star wars prequel-anakin story. here's a guy who basically started out a good man, trying to do good, and then seeing it turn so badly, and now he's much more vulnerable to bad influences. no doubt, there were larger forces at working pushing him this way the whole time. in the end, the character will be a prime example of how the worst evils are often committed in by people who believe they are doing good. after all, how many evil acts have been committed by men who believe god is talking directly to them: osama bin laden, adolf hitler, george w. bush, the list goes on and on...

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 1:08 a.m. CST


    by GrandoCarIissian

    the Darth Vader CHOKE on that guy...

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 1:35 a.m. CST

    what a great show

    by alexnivek

    And for all you people complaining that it's too slow, well, go watch MTV or something. Some of us like a show that takes its time setting atmosphere and building characters. And Samson the midget is cool, although it would be even cooler if Audrey and Agent Cooper would join him. Re: who is good and who is bad--I think Ben is probably good and Justin is bad. Sometimes the obvious answer actually is the correct one. Look at how they've used their powers--Ben has healed the sick, while Justin's driven a man to kill himself and nearly killed another.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 1:38 a.m. CST

    Another uneventful episode...guf

    by aceattorney

    Unfreakinbelievable...this show is getting too slow.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 2:02 a.m. CST

    A lot happened in this ep..

    by Rinse

    The MOTW ghost town itself was kinda neat, but we saw Justin take off; Ben "reliving" his father's part in his dream; Lodz having some sort of tie to the bear, which has some sort of tie to management; that Lodz had in fact given up his sight at one point as he noted two eps. ago; how Jonsey lost his leg; what Ben's father did to a whole town of people; on and on and on.. Might not be your cup of tea, but to me a lot happens in the details. I agree that it's the best HBO show yet! It might not survive on a network, but that's why I subscribe to HBO. :P

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 2:30 a.m. CST


    by Peter Venkman

    I don't mind a show taking it's time setting things up, but this show is a major snoozefest. I have lost all interest in this show, due to it's refusal to actually push it's story forward. For God's Sake! Even THE WIRE was slow moving but it was at least interesting...Nothing has happened on this show since episode one, which really showed a lot of potential. Well, what do you expect from the creator of WOLF LAKE?

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 4:24 a.m. CST

    too slow?

    by GrandoCarIissian

    i think the people who can't get into this show just don't get what kind of show this is. i don't think it's meant to be a plot-driven or character-driven show... it's much more expressionistic and metaphorical. a lot of what happens on the show happens inside people's heads, or in some reality that isn't necessarily shared in common by everyone. a lot of the scenes are intended solely to be evocative of a certain feeling or mood, rather than to advance the plot or develop a character. not everything has a clear meaning, and many things are so subtle that they won't be picked up on until the series is finished most likely. if you don't have much patience for this kind of thing, then you probably won't like carnivale. usually i don't have much patience for these kinds of shows either, but i'm intrigued enough by this one to keep watching. it's kinda refreshing to have a show that doesn't hit you over the head with the obvious, but rather lets you discover things for yourself. tonight's show was worth watching just for the scene of the girl in the window at the end. a scene like that, and what it implies... that's much more creepy than some over-the-top cgi ghost fx.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 9:05 a.m. CST

    It's OK

    by LewMoxon

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 9:11 a.m. CST


    by LewMoxon

    but nothing special. The best HBO series? No, that would be Sopranos or Oz. The Twin Peaks comparisons are valid, because that was also an over-rated series that was boring, pretentious and strange just for the sake of being strange. Nick Stahl shows all the emotional range of broken window. But, Brother Justin is a blast, and so is Samson, Jonesy and the rest of the Carnies. It balances out. BTW, the bartender does try to leave Babylon (at the beginning of Ep. 5). Apparently, he's cursed to always return. Kind of like Spike has to return to Wolfram and Hart (there's your damn Whedon connection).

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 10:17 a.m. CST

    Great great great

    by purplemonkeydw

    Love this show...look forward to it every Sunday...HBO has the best shows on television, and I can't wait for Angels in America... the way The Sopranos...has lost its steam...drop it...

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 11:08 a.m. CST

    Yeh harlot.

    by StigMata

    SPOILER - When the "harlot" carny was pulled back into an afterlife of rape by the miner ghosts, how many of you were reminded of Satan pulling the heroine into the depths in John Carpenter's Prince of Darkness? Li'l eerie from the weary. I found some of the acting from the secondary carny's quite stiff when discussing justice and that worries me. I want to love this show -the elements are all there, but something is missing. And those WW1 sequences with the killer bear (wha?) are just silly. There is a disconnect here, between coloring the characters and giving us the plot. There aren't many episodic payoffs, but I don't doubt there will be a whopper of a shocker come finale time.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 12:21 p.m. CST

    When will the friggin' characters ever finish a damned conversat

    by thegrunter

    I've said this before and I'm sure I'll say it again. I'm sorry, but aside from some masterful cinematography work - that this series simply DOES NOT DESERVE - this show is an utter disaster. Complaining about the pace of a show implies that the show might actually be building to something. I'm sorry, but some of you are much more optimistic about the direction of this series than I, since as far as I can tell this show has no narrative drive whatsoever. It simply meanders and sputters. It's one long string of one-sided, anti-climactic conversations. Two random characters isolate themselves, approximately four lines of pseudo-cryptic dialogue bounce back and forth, complete with some tangential reference to something biblical and then one or the other of the characters clams up in a huff and storms off into the dust. There's only a mystery to this series because none of the characters will finish a damned conversation! It just doesn't work on any level - let alone come close to the metaphorical heights to which it seems to aspire.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 1:41 p.m. CST


    by 007-11

    I missed last weeks show, but fortunately there was a nice recap, still want to see that one though. This is the only show I make a point of watching. The list would include Karen Sisco, but I never get a chance to watch it. I love this show for simply not dicking around, every show pushes the story forward and adds new layers. After watching this last episode I really can't decide whether or not Justin or Ben is the creature of darkness. Neither of them are particularly malicious. The ending where you see the girl's soul trapped in Babylon forever was an exceptionally stark image. On a side note, Clea Duvall is very attractive, and to hell with all those who say any different.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 2:14 p.m. CST

    LewMoxon, people like you make HBO so good

    by coop

    And that's because HBO is one of the only channels that doesn't program to the idiotic masses. Try getting an attention span Billy Bob. This show has a lot of things going on, you are just too dimwitted to catch it. Maybe you should quit checking out your sister's cleavage and flipping channels and pay attention a little closer. Also, Twin Peaks was a great show but you and the rest of the masses gave up when they didn't tell you who killed Laura Palmer quick enough. If only HBO had done Twin Peaks.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 3:44 p.m. CST

    Holy God Jesus!

    by Han Ol' Buddy

    This episode was fantastic. Much better than last week's. I guessed about the miners and also about Dora Mae's ultimate fate. Seriously, other than the Brother Justin stuff, which was semi-unfulfilling (the kid's ghosts was a nice, creepy touch though), it was a great ep. Anyone who thinks nothing happened or that the ep was too slow is crazy. Next ep looks like it'll be an exciting one as well. Herc, I pray to God that there will be another one of these talkbacks next Sunday, even if the writer isn't Ronald whatever-his-name-is.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 7:19 p.m. CST

    Someone help me out, here.

    by Fairy

    Hi there. I like Carnivale, but I admit it, I'm slow and need the cliffnotes. Here are my questions for anyone who would like to respond. 1. Did John Hannah admit to killing her? Did he say why he did it (assuming ghosts made him do it) 2. What was the purpose of Clea Duvall going into town where she ultimately gave up her virginity and pretending to be someone she wasn't? I get what happened; I don't get why. 3. Any speculation why Ben didn't bring Dora Mae back to life? He did it with the cat "two weeks in the ground," so it seems to me that's what he should do. 4. Still trying to make some kind of sense of Clea's mother wandering out of her catatonia and telling Ben that he's the one. The one as in the savior (or the opposite)? And for the record, the girl who plays Dora Mae -- very brave. What a risky role. I hope it pays off for the actress.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 7:28 p.m. CST


    by Han Ol' Buddy

    You can check out discussions on the HBO website, but it's all open to interpretation. I assume that Ben doesn't use his gift too much because a) he's afraid of it and the attention it will bring him and b) he doesn't know what will happen to someone or something else. I also really didn't catch why Clea went to town to "do it". Maybe hormones or something. The coming storm may have had something to do with it. I also don't think the bartender confessed to killing Dora Mae. I think he was there for the carnies to take their rage out on. A device for the script and a decent one, albeit with a few loose plot threads. But it sounded like he "understood" why she was taken. The ghosts needed some "company". Very creepy indeed. Sounds like he'll be getting his own as well, since he did nothing to warn off the carnival and was killed in town. And, I don't know why the mom wandered off either. I saw that she wasn't even in this episode. I didn't see her at least. Good luck. This series takes a few eps to answer the questions that keep coming up. That's what makes it so good.

  • Oct. 20, 2003, 8:18 p.m. CST


    by 007-11

    Ben's gift was explained about 2 episodes ago by a woman who knew Ben's father, Hack Scudder. Whenever Ben gives life to something it has to come from somewhere, someplace not of his choosing. Remember when he healed the little girls legs in thhe first episode and how the field turned brown he did it and when she ran towards the house? That's how it works, I think there might be a few more things he's capable of, but so far the healing is the only one he has control over. As far as why Clea had sex, I can't really remember the specifics but it sounded like she had done that a few times before. As to why she pretended, that's just a more complicated maneuver to get some tail. Han has got it right with the John Hannah character, he didn't really say he did it. He knew what was going on though. And Clea's mother is a catatonic clairvoyant(say that 3 times fast), whatever is going on with Ben was powerful enough for her to stir, the precise answer has yet to be revealed. They're playing all 7 of the previously shown shows on HBO 2 at some point later in the week so if you have access look out for it. This is the kind of show that can always use a second viewing. Once again, great show.

  • Oct. 21, 2003, 1:43 a.m. CST

    this is the best show on television at this moment in time

    by frantoll


  • Oct. 21, 2003, 8:42 a.m. CST

    Coop, I bear you no malice

    by LewMoxon

    I was a pretentious little shit when I was 15, too.

  • Oct. 22, 2003, 9:32 a.m. CST

    Does anyone know how many episodes this show is gonna be?

    by Goon Bighead

    this is a cool show, kinda like a lynch does the thorn birds or something....i keep waiting for barbeau to do a handstand split like that fat bitch and show her cunny....i dont think knick stahl is acting too hard in this....clea duvall, the male josh hartnet, LOL!!!!!!...sampson rules....who or what is management?....why the fuck does he keep flashing back to WWI and that fucking bear?

  • Oct. 23, 2003, 1:49 a.m. CST

    I have plenty of patience, but CARNIVALE isn't letting us know a

    by Lenny Nero

    I've watched all the episodes so far very very closely, but they just seem to bring on the biblical references without explaining why any of this crap is happening. What does this have to do with the opening credits (the tarot card opening is the best thing in the show). The first episode in Babylon made a great deal of sense, even to those who aren't theological scholars, but this week's episode kind of ruined it by never really following up. Can anyone freakin' help me understand why these things are happening and why I am supposed to care? I dig the show somewhat, but I'm just lost some of the time. They've gotta explain something, right?