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December 9, 2004

Future of PAX's Sue Thomas, FBEye Questionable, Says Fan Group

From: Agape Press, MS - Dec 9, 2004

Fans Launch Support Campaign to Keep Series Afloat

By Melinda Baker
December 9, 2004

(AgapePress) - An ongoing trend in the entertainment industry may soon claim another victim. Many faith-based, quality family programs see their productions cut short due to financial reasoning or the misconception that there isn't an audience for moral television programs. PAX TV's Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye could soon be the latest casualty.

Created by David Alan Johnson and Gary R. Johnson, Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye is inspired by the true story of Sue Thomas, a profoundly deaf woman employed at the FBI. Thomas became the first deaf female special investigative assistant when another agent discovered she could read lips. Deanne Bray, a deaf actress, was cast in the title role opposite a strong supporting cast. In 2002 the series premiered to a vast audience that has continued growing.

For two years, Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye has offered quality family programming, creative storylines, strong principal character, clean humor, high climaxes, superb drama, and excellent writing. Each episode tackles current issues without any trace of vulgarity. By incorporating both the deaf and hearing communities, prejudice against the deaf has been cast aside.

Utilizing hearing and deaf actors to create the plots has offered a diversity that allows for novel television. Integrating American Sign Language, speaking, and lip reading into each episode would seem inconceivable, but good direction makes each episode fresh, exciting, and educational. The storylines do not offer only entertainment value, but also inspiration to the human spirit. Each episode offers spiritual encouragement through Sue Thomas and her belief in God.

"The Holocaust Survivor" episode tells the story of Sue assisting Helga, a woman overcome by hate 50 years later after encountering a man who resembles the guard at the concentration camp she was held prisoner in during WWII. Sue also deals with the pain of knowing that the Germans would have considered her defective, and that she would have been subjected to life in a concentration camp or death.

In "Did She or Didn't She," Sue offers hope to an abused wife, Carol, by reminding her that a husband should honor his wife as Christ honors the Church.

And in "Hit and Run," Sue is kidnapped and must survive without Levi, her hearing dog. Limited in her ability to help, she still finds the strength to offer assistance to her captor because she believes in him and desires to find the truth.

In an industry brimming with formulaic and simplistic projects, Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye has been a breath of fresh air. Winner of the Parents Television Council Seal of Approval, its has gained honor and recognition for its quality. Now the series faces being dropped from PAX TV, its home for the past two years. Production is slated to cease at the end of January, two and a half seasons before its contract expires. Its counterpart, Doc, has already ceased production and aired its final episode. PAX has fewer than a dozen original programs in production that are family-oriented. The cancellation of Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye would leave a void hard to fill.

Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye may become part of television history unless the voices of the fans are heard. The fans of the show have united to revive interest from networks. A campaign is being mounted through by its members through its website.

[EDITOR'S NOTE: PAX TV says it is under contract for a full season of Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye. A spokesman for Pebblehut Productions, which produces the program, confirms that production will cease at the end of January, but that the show is "not dead in the water yet." He says Pebblehut is in negotiations for the show to continue airing past this season on PAX, but it is "up in the air" as to where that might be. The production staff, he says, is hopeful about the future of the series.]

Melinda Baker lives in Florida and is a fan of Sue Thomas, F.B.Eye. She encourages fellow supporters of the series to join the letter-writing campaign through the fan club's website. PAX TV can be contacted directly via its website.

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