Twilight of the running back

The show failed to hypnotize viewers: In the early years of television, every episode was a standalone. Recent decades have made it standard for shows to end each season with a cliffhanger, then for the series to conclude with a finale that ties up the story. ABC's prime-time crime series "Killer Women" managed to violate both norms. Ordered as a midwinter run that would introduce the characters for a full series in the fall, "Killer Women" was a ratings bust -- not helped by the worst promo of all time -- and canceled after six episodes. Filmed as the cliffhanger that sets up the second season, the finale ended on a shocking twist. Since there will be no second season, viewers will never find out what happened. The writers will never find out, either.

"Killer Women" starred Tricia Helfer, who was the evil megababe robot of "Battlestar Galactica." On a crime-procedural landscape that has featured television detectives who have psychic powers, can reanimate the dead or are immortal, the show's premise nonetheless managed to be preposterous: Helfer played a Texas Ranger assigned to catch murderers who are gorgeous, sexy women. In each episode she would cross paths early with a looker; in the last reel, the beauty queen would be revealed as a homicidal maniac. However titillating this premise might have seemed to the suits who green-lighted the series, the results were absurd plots, even by the low standards of action fare.

"Killer Women" typical nonsense: A woman in a tight red minidress commits a murder in full view of 100 people, then gets away using an elaborately choreographed escape plan. Helfer catches the stylish murderer by chasing down a tip about a hot woman in a tight red minidress acting nervously as she registered at a hotel. So a master criminal staged an elaborate escape, but forgot to change clothes.

Helfer's character declared she is "trained to know when someone is lying" and to hypnotize suspects. Interrogation training is hardly foolproof -- but actual Texas Rangers have indeed gone from guarding the stagecoach to performing hypnosis. See the bottom of this page.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: In March, the Bucs waived Darrelle Revis in order to avoid sending Jersey/B a third-round draft choice to complete their 2013 trade, which stipulated that if Revis were not on the Tampa roster when 2014 free agency began, the Jets would receive only a fourth-round choice. So in effect, the Bucs traded Revis and a fourth-round draft choice for a third-round choice.

For having Revis on the team for 16 games, the Buccaneers paid $16 million and first- and fourth-round draft selections. This is on a par with the Oakland Raiders' 2008 decision to trade second- and fifth-round selections for DeAngelo Hall, pay him $8 million, then waive him after eight games. Apparently $1 million per game is the going rate for high-profile corners a team will immediately want to get rid of.

The Buccaneers have a new head coach and new general manager. Trashing the Revis deal shifts blame toward the previous front office. New general manager Jason Licht can imply that predecessor Mark Dominick screwed things up so badly, Licht took over a sinking pirate ship. For many NFL teams, setting expectations low is essential. That the new guy is lining up excuses is not a great sign.

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