I don’t watch Fox’s “Prison Break,” but I do count myself as a fan of the NBC series “Heroes” and when Susan and I watched Monday’s episode last night it finished with a hard sell about their upcoming “Fall Finale” and reminded me of a recent promo for “Prison Break” that did the same thing with the same phrase.
Fall finale? Apparently that’s some sort of network euphamism for “We don’t have the next several episodes in the can… or maybe the several ones after that too.” But of course they can’t just say that. Instead they have to song and dance it as if it’s all just business as usual.

Well it’s bad business as usual.

At least when “Lost” went missing a couple weeks ago ABC didn’t try to lipstick the pig. They just enthusiastically pitched its audience with “When ‘Lost’ returns in 2009…” (actually it comes back in three months but it might as well be three years) and hoped any harumphing would die down. I’m sure they’re crossing their fingers and toes hard hoping said harumphers will come back — and frankly I’m not sure if I will. Harumph!

And so now “Heroes” is going bye-bye in a couple weeks for I don’t even know how many more weeks or some such nonsense, and again I’m not all that keen on sitting around like a good and loyal TV viewer during its sabbatical waiting for it to come back to me.

It’s one thing when a semi- and low-rated turkey like “Nine” gets yanked while the honchos figure out whether to kill it or reposition it in hopes the numbers will rise, but it’s another thing entirely when popular crap just up and vanishes.

It’s enough to make me yearn all the more for “24,” whose new season will bow in January and promises six straight beginning-to-end months of new episodes of Keifer Sutherland’s Jack Bauer kicking ass. When you’re saving the world there’s just no time for any kind of seasonal interruption.