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When ‘October Road’ first premiered, I was quickly drawn to it. The premise of a New York novelist who returns to his hometown of Knight’s Ridge, Massachusetts after a ten year absence…it held so much promise. Nick Garrett may have had a bestseller under his belt, but now he must come to terms with the world he left behind. There is the matter of a ten year-old boy who may or may not be his child. There is the boy’s mother, whom Nick still pines for even though she has moved on. And then there is a bevy of characters who have never really escaped that small Massachusetts town, including an agoraphobe and a fella who just really looks homeless.
Now in season two (the final 13 episodes), we begin in New York City because one of Nick’s pals has run off there after his wife had an affair. For a hot minute, we get to see a sliver of Nick’s life as he once knew it, including a loft that I would throw a small child under a bus for. Then we are back to the Ridge, and some storylines that really feel like they are killing time (there’s a whole subplot about the shut-in dude’s television – which he has named, mind you – giving off its last breath). I mean, if I were the network and I saw these first episodes, I would have cancelled it, too. Only in the latter half, do some of the good storylines get new blood: true loves, questions of paternity, cancer, the usual. In fact, to get the scoop on who the boy’s father is, one must go to the bonus features for something called “Road’s End: The Final Chapter,” which looks like it was produced on the fly, but at least it answers all the lingering questions we had. Unless you are up at night wondering about this stuff, then your time is probably better spent on another show to keep IT from being cancelled.