So I’ve been watching a TV series called “The Glades” on Netflix. I like it primarily because of the south Florida scenery and locations, but the criminal plotlines (it’s a crime show, about an obnoxious detective) have an almost Carl Hiaasen feel to them at times.
But the producers of the show have decided to include an on-again off-again romantic relationship between a whiny struggling single mother nurse and the detective. And halfway through the first season, I knew that if I never saw that character again, or her son, I’d be quite pleased. It isn’t just the whininess of the character, it’s that you can see the writers pulling the strings on the relationship a mile away – it’s THAT obvious. So now when I see the single mom or her kid I just pull the headphones off until they’re gone. Makes the show MUCH better.
It occurs that there must be other shows out there with the same flaw: uninteresting supporting characters, secondary plotlines that are a total bore. Any nominees?
**Joan of Arcadia **was a somewhat schizophrenic show. Half of it revolved around the title character, her family, and her friends at school (and God, in all his various incarnations). This half was excellent. The other half revolved around the police station, where her father was Chief of Police. That half (a) sucked, and (b) had little or nothing to do with the ongoing story in the other half. You could skip every scene set in the police station and lose absolutely nothing.
The show even made it easy to skip the police half, because every scene in it was shot through a heavy blue filter for immediate recognition. When the color balance returned to normal, you could start paying attention again.
The Khalessi storyline in Game of Thrones was really a drag on Season 4.
Her rise to power through the first 3 seasons was interesting but in S4 nothing really progressed her storyline towards getting back to Westeros.
Law & Order could have dispensed with most of its personal side stories. I wouldn’t say that they were actively bad, just not what the show did best. And most of them were spread out in small snippets over multiple episodes, so in reruns it’s hard to piece them back together into any kind of proper story. For years I’d heard references to Van Buren suing the police department for something. Just last week I finally saw the episode where she tells her detectives why, and I have no idea how it turned out.
Most current cop/detective shows start out good butreally get dragged down by involving us in their various personal lives and having the case du jour be the secondary arc of the story. I don’t care about your interpersonal issues and sex lives, get back to doing your jobs.
I totally agree, but they ALL do that. I have to assume that among TV scriptwriters it’s considered the smart path to take. I’ve never understood why it was. Really, the cop’s role in most cop dramas is to be a straight man to the wacky criminals, suspects and regular folks that create drama for the show. Having him or her “humanized” fucks up the show almost every time.
Rusty is Sharon’s kitty. They needed to make her caring, and thus likable after her being the “hatesink” on The Closer for so many years. Actually, the first couple of Rusty episodes on The Closer were pretty exciting.
If the soap-opera-y aspects of cop shows are for women, FAIL, as far as I’m concerned. One of my all-time favorite shows is Law & Order, because it did so little of that crap. I’ve been pretty fed up with SVU lately, and I don’t even think I’ll watch it next season. All that stuff with Benson makes me want to puke, and she used to be one of the best characters on TV. It’s like some Evel Knievel thing, trying to see how many sharks she can jump at one time.
My original thought was to answer the thread title: Secondary Characters/Plotlines That Are A Total Drag On The Show/Movie…are almost always my favorite part. I love a soap opera aspect to a T.V. show. I was even waiting for someone to come along and mention the Rusty storyline on Major Crimes, which of course is my favorite part.
Fortunately I don’t watch most of the other shows mentioned in this thread, but if I did, I’m sure I’d like all the stuff that you don’t.
I am female, but I can’t speak for all women – just that with few exceptions, a show with no focus at all on interpersonal relationships can’t hold my interest. OTOH, what is with violence, chases and explosions? They make my eyes glaze over, and if there are too many, I’ll tune out entirely.
I like the SyFy show Defiance, but I DVR it just so I can fast-forward past all the parts about Datak Tarr and his family. They’re like fingernails on a chalkboard to me and I just don’t give a shit about them at all.