<P><EM>Meerkat Manor</EM></P>

Meerkat Manor

Watched by more than four million people, one of TV's most addictive soap operas and Animal Planet's current No. 1 series, Meerkat Manor (8:30 pm/ET), ends its third season tonight. "In the finale... there is turmoil in the Kalahari, there's turmoil with the Whiskers and there will be some new groups surprising everybody [and] coming to the forefront," says executive producer Mick Kaczorowski. "It's not quite certain whether or not Rocket Dog, who right now is taking over the role of dominant female, [is] going to be strong enough to lead the Whiskers." Asked if Flower's tragic death, witnessed by viewers on Sept. 28, could break up the family, Kaczorowski answers, "Most likely not, because of how strong a leader she was and what a good mother she was — she passed on those traits." And now for the question on the minds of Meerkat fans everywhere: Why didn't the film crew intervene to save Flower? "We're part of a study with Cambridge University, so our responsibility is just to observe — we don't learn anything from the meerkats if we intercede." Makes sense, but it still breaks our hearts. At least we have something to look forward to: In 2008, there will be a feature film based on Flower's life, and Season 4 of Meerkat begins next summer.

Check out clips of Flower and the other meerkats in our Online Video Guide.

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