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Series / Drive (2007)

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A short lived show about an illegal, underground, cross-country, The Cannonball Run style street race, written by Tim Minear and starring Nathan Fillion. Everyone had a reason to be in it, with many of those reasons involving blackmail. It was supposed to mix character study and action, but it didn't last long enough to succeed at the character study, at least not to the level advertised.

No matter where FOX put this show, how many ads they ran for it, or who was in it, the show couldn't get any viewers. Four episodes aired in two timeslots on two weeks before it was canned, at which point the usual people blamed FOX for everything.

This show's failure is a major reason that Sunday nights on FOX are reserved for animation, and perhaps vice versa.

This show provides examples of:

  • All Bikers are Hells Angels: Subverted; the badass-looking people riding the black Harley are revealed to be an old couple once they take their helmets off.
  • Cool Car: Subverted at first, as most of the characters are entering the race with their own cars, which include a Ford Taurus, an old landscaping truck, and even a minivan. (Only the Salazars' Impala lowrider and the Lairds' Trans Am count.) Then, in episode three, Alex gets that black Dodge Challenger.
    • The Pontiac Solstice that Leigh steals also counts. Too bad she can't drive stick...
  • Cut Short
  • Dick Dastardly Stops to Cheat: As a reward for being the first team to reach the checkpoint in Rome, Georgia, Alex and Corinna are given a chance to skip the next checkpoint in exchange for completing a task. That task turns out to be robbing a bank. It doesn't end well.
  • Epic Race: The reason the Race exists, naturally.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Leigh realizes that the clue to the next checkpoint, "Surrender, America", is a reference to Appomattox Court House in Virginia, where Lee surrendered to Grant, after seeing that the highway is named for a Confederate war hero.
  • Exact Words: Susan tells Leigh that they should keep competing in the race because she had a dream where God said "You will win this race". As she dies in episode four, she repeats it with clarity: "God told me you will win this race".
  • Guide Dang It!: Many of the clues to checkpoints require knowledge of fairly obscure trivia to figure out, which you wouldn't expect to be in the hands of ordinary people running in an underground, cross-country road race.
    • "Kennedy killed in '73," accompanied by a countdown. The destination? Cape Canaveral, known as Cape Kennedy until 1973, the name change "killing" the Kennedy name. The countdown was for a shuttle launch.
    • "Surrender, America." The destination? Appomattox Court House, Virginia, where Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant.
    • A pair of hot candies with wrappers that say "Atomic Fireball". The destination? The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, with the clue referring to the song "Great Balls of Fire". Made especially frustrating by the fact that Three Mile Island would've been a much more obvious destination, given the clue.
  • I Have Your Wife: How Alex is forced into the race.
  • Like You Were Dying: John Trimble.
  • Long Lost Sibling: The Salazars.
  • Loophole Abuse: As punishment for being the last person to cross the first checkpoint in Jupiter, Florida, Wendy is given a gun and told that Ivy, one of her competitors, could not arrive at the next checkpoint in her vehicle. Wendy is too sweet-natured to kill Ivy, so her solution is to convince Ivy to abandon her teammates Susan and Leigh, and partner with her instead. Ain't no rule saying that she had to kill her!
  • The Mountains Of Florida
  • Not Named in Opening Credits: Dylan Baker for five of the six episodes, despite appearing in all of them. (He finally got moved up to the opening for the finale.) Oddly, Rochelle Aytes, Riley Smith, and Mircea Monroe do appear in the opening credits despite not appearing in all of the episodes.
  • Pimped-Out Car: The Salazars' 1964 Impala lowrider, which Winston brags used to be owned by the former leader of the Latin Kings.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: "Can't Stop the World" by Gavin Rossdale.
  • Screaming Birth: Wendy is in the middle of one when she's introduced.
  • Same Character, But Different: Detective Early, who is pursuing Alex (Nathan Fillion) is played by the same actor that portrayed Jubal Early in "Firefly" who chased after Nathan back when he was Malcolm Reynolds.
  • Shout-Out: Alex's Challenger is a reference to the classic road movie Vanishing Point.
  • Viewers Are Goldfish: The Soup put together a montage of how many times characters used the phrase "secret illegal underground road race" to describe what they were doing when asked. It lasted a minute and a half.

Alternative Title(s): Drive