Inhuman Swill : Cliffhangers

Tomorrow morning I expect to be disappointed.

Like many of you, I've been following the Serial podcast for the past few months. My reactions to the previous eleven episodes have ranged from bored to enthralled to confused, but I'm pretty sure that tomorrow's final episode will leave me feeling disappointment.

I'd love to be wrong. I'd love for Episode 12 to pull everything together, to fill me with a transcendent sense of the ephemeral nature of truth, or to turn up the final damning piece of evidence that either implicates or exonerates Adnan Syed. I don't have much confidence in either outcome.

Maybe part of this comes from my own unreasonable expectations. When I first started listening to this true-crime story, I assumed that Sarah Koenig was well ahead of the game and had unraveled the mystery already. I assumed from the very title, Serial, not just that twists and turns and cliffhangers and reversals lay ahead, but that a sure hand on the tiller was guiding the ship to a known destination.

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At last! A web site that proves I'm not alone in remembering that obscure but wonderful classic of lost '70s television—Cliffhangers! What? A television series that ends every episode on a cliffhanger? Unthinkable!

God, I hope some enlightened soul puts this on DVD someday. I didn't miss an episode of this as a kid of eleven, at least until my sisters won an argument about what program we were going to watch one night, and I'm still bitter about never having seen the endings of "Stop Susan Williams," "The Secret Empire," and "The Curse of Dracula." (Cliffhangers! was cancelled before "Stop" and "Empire" were concluded.)

I really thought I was the only one who had ever seen this show (which would explain why it vanished without a trace), and sometimes I wondered if I had only imagined it.

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