Anthony Michael Hall by Philippe Bosse/USA Network; Billy Campbell by Billy Zenuk/USA Network
UPDATE: I just got my hands on an exclusive statement from Jeff Wachtel, USA Exec VP Original Programming, regarding the demise of Dead Zone and The 4400: "We wish we could keep all our great shows alive forever. But we feel we need to give some of our new shows a platform to grow, and it's with great sadness that we say goodbye to two shows that had a great run and helped create the resurgence of original programming on our network and on all of cable."

My original story appears below.

Next time USA Network gives you a lump of coal for Christmas, be thankful - very thankful - because this year, my moles tell me, what you're getting is the cancellation of both Dead Zone and The 4400.

Yep, per multiple sources, the much-discussed Armageddon came early to Dead Zone - so early, in fact, that the show's last episode aired... gee, back in September. What turned out to be the 4400's series finale aired the same night.

In a statement posted on the official 4400 message boards, series creator Scott Peters said, "We've had a great time bringing you this story and submersing you in the lives of all these incredible characters. Let me raise my metaphorical glass to you all and thank you for being so loyal and so dedicated. I wish we could go on forever, but the party has come to an end."

Already, petitions were circulating to get The 4400 renewed, but is the effort too little, too late? Can anything bring The Dead Zone back to life? Or should the shows be allowed to rest in peace? Discuss, debate and, if you have to weep, do it quietly, huh?