TV

Television Q&A: What happened to ‘Roswell’?

You have questions. I have some answers.

Q: What happened to "Roswell"? It was a good show with an interesting idea.

A: For folks tuning in late, first there was "Roswell," a science fiction series that aired on the old WB and UPN networks from 1999 to 2002. Then, in January arrived "Roswell, New Mexico," a reworking of the older series, on The CW (which was formed with pieces of WB and UPN). The newer series did well enough in its first run that The CW has ordered a second batch of episodes to premiere at midseason. Other series resuming later this season on the network include "DC's Legends of Tomorrow," "The 100" and "In the Dark."

Q: Do you know what happened to Brian Lamb, who appeared on C-SPAN on Sunday nights? He is no longer there.

A: The founder of the ground-breaking public-affairs network retired in April, with his last new telecast, an interview with historian David McCullough, airing in May, and some repeats of Lamb appearances airing after that.

Lamb had stepped down as CEO and chairman of C-SPAN in 2012 but kept his TV appearances going until this year when, at 77 years old, he had had enough. "It's just time," Lamb says. "I remember, sadly, when David Brinkley was doing the ABC Sunday show near the end, he shouldn't have been. And he waited too long – and people were talking about it."

Brinkley had a long, distinguished career with NBC and ABC News but, at the age of 76 in 1996, made some unexpectedly harsh comments on election night when he reportedly did not realize he was on the air. He retired not long after and passed away in 2003.

Q: Could you please tell me what happened to "Vikings" on the History channel? I have watched all of it and hope it comes back.

A: It will. The sixth season will begin with a two-hour premiere Dec. 4. Eight weekly episodes will follow, then the show will take a break before airing the season's 10 remaining episodes in 2020. This will be the final season but there has been regular talk about a spinoff.

Q: Years ago there was a major change to movie screen size with the introduction of the Cinerama series with moderator Lowell Thomas showing us the wonders of this beautiful world. There were even movie theaters built specifically to accommodate those larger screens (three smaller screens synchronized together to make one very big movie screen). I loved those travelogue movies. Has there ever been an attempt to bring them to DVD?

A: Cinerama was an intriguing process that let people feel as if they were surrounded by the movie images (accompanied by quality sound). But it was also cumbersome for theaters, and you could sometimes spot the seams between the screens. So only rarely was it used for productions other than travelogues. That said, Flicker Alley (flickeralley.com) offers on DVD and Blu-ray titles such as "This is Cinerama," "Cinerama's South Seas Adventure," "Cinerama's Russian Adventure" and "Cinerama's Seven Wonders of the World." Flicker Alley also has streaming options. You can find samples on YouTube of the way the films are presented. While not an exact rendition – you're not going to put three projectors in your home, are you? – the streaming versions I've seen still look and sound good and offer a sense of what the old productions were like.

Mailbag update: After my unsuccessful search for a DVD of the 1951 version of "Tom Brown's Schooldays," several readers pointed that, in fact, it is available on DVD from VCI Entertainment (www.vcientertainment.com) . Thank you to those video sleuths!

(Do you have a question or comment about entertainment past, present and future? Write to Rich Heldenfels, P.O. Box 417, Mogadore, OH 44260, or brenfels@gmail.com. Letters may be edited. Individual replies are not guaranteed.)

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