TV trends I'm tired of

  1. Reality shows. They were fun in the beginning when they were a novelty but I just can’t get into them anymore. Without scripts, people sound kind of dumb and predictable.

  2. Imaginary Scenes. When a sitcom flashes between reality and what the character would actually like to do, often using special effects. A la Ally McBeal, Scrubs, Andy Richter. It seem like a throwaway device because they couldn’t think of a better way to advance the story.

Here’s some:

Kids who are wise beyond their years
Hearing the thoughts of animals (Married…with children excepted)
Couples who hate each other and end up in bed (Moonlighting?)

The ingestion of insects and worms, either alive or dead, i.e. Fear Factor and Survivor.

I’ll add one more
Quirky Characters. Again Ally McBeal is the archetype. Shows where every damn one of them has some stupid thing they do. Oh boy, I wonder what zany thing they’ll do next for no reason!

Wacky weddings and births. Enough. Just have people get married and produce children.

It’s especially bad because these days it’s so expected to have a zany wedding episode and everyone’s doing it, that they have to constantly one-up each other.

[li]Laugh Tracks[/li][li]99.9% of all sit-coms with Friends at position #1[/li][li]News (both local and network) that is becoming more Entertainment Tonight-ish every year.[/li][li]News (both local and network) that passes off fluff pieces and barely concealed product advertising (Ooh look! Boeing has a new jet!) as real news.[/li][li]Blatant copying of shows that work for other networks.[/li][li]The Oprah-ization of America.[/li][/ul]

Well, my entire after-work TV schpiel is X Files, Buffy and MASH.

I get all I need out of that, and since it’s on FX, they’re all older episodes without the “New Millenium” lack of creativity crap.

And I hate reality shows.

Shows that centre on the working lives and personal lives of[ul][li]lawyers;[/li][li]doctors; or[/li]police.[/ul]It’s all been done already!

Actually, I’d like to see news when I watch a scheduled newscast. Not “entertainment news” about which celebrity in Hollywood or New York is doing what, but real news.

There was a time when a half-hour newscast was mostly news, with a little weather and sports thrown in. Now, the much-longer newscasts seem to feature mostly entertainment gossip with a little news, weather, and sports. I don’t really care which celebrity is doing what, but I do care to know what’s happening in the world. Put news back in the news!

*Originally posted by Narrad *
**Shows that centre on the working lives and personal lives of[ul][li]lawyers;[/li][li]doctors; or[/li][li]police.[/ul]It’s all been done already! **[/li][/QUOTE]

Let us not forget the rapidly growing spate of shows about the personal lives of political figures, spies, and college kids.

*Originally posted by Narrad *
**Shows that centre on the working lives and personal lives of[ul][li]lawyers;[/li][li]doctors; or[/li][li]police.[/ul]It’s all been done already! **[/li][/QUOTE]

Everything’s been done already. Those three continue to be done because they give a lot of dramatic possibilities. If you took them off, you’d be stuck with reality TV.

Count your blessings.

Those damn ticker things at the bottom of the screen on news networks. At least have them match up with what the talking head is reading for pete’s sake!

Those network promo things that scroll across the screen when they finally get done with the commercials and get back to the show. Just let me watch the show, dammit!!!

So there’s no professions other than these three? No one else experiences any drama?

I think it laziness and fear more than anything else. Why risk a dramatic show about some other profession when you know cops, doctors, and lawyers will work?

I too am sick of them. I simply can’t imagine anyone saying, “You know what we need? A COP show!”

Never watched Twin Peaks huh? And I assume that somebody will come in and mention an even older show.


I agree, they are easily slotted into 3 acts and can be self-contained in one episode.

This entire thread is precisely why I’m down to watching about 2 hours of TV a week.

I just feel like there’s something better I could be doing. Even if that “something better” is sleeping or sitting & staring at my navel.

I don’t think I’ve disagreed with a one of you yet!

And although there ARE other professions out there, I doubt you’ll ever see a drama out there that chronicles the exciting life of accountants like me. sigh

Squeezing the closing credits to the side so that the network can run a promo or the local station can do a news teaser. Sometimes I may actually want to find out who that actor was in the episode I just saw, and I have to squint to find out. Ugh.

I’ll echo what the others have said earlier about local news. It has become a complete joke. I never watch it anymore. At least the local ABC affiliate has stopped running their endless advertising campaign hyping the fact that they have not one, but two news helicopters.

NBC had the Olympic Logo right below their Peacock logo during much of their network programming for what…three years prior to the Salt Lake Winter Olympics? Irritated the hell out of me that they would hype the fact that they were the network that paid the most to cover the Olympics for so long. And then they utterly botched the coverage. I see that NBC no longer has the Olympic logo squatting underneath its Peacock…I take this as a sign that they will not be televising the 2004 Games in Athens.

It also seems to me that there are fewer new episodes of a series each season. Except for sweeps month, it never seems to happen that we get three or four new episodes of anything in a row.

Primetime gameshows. No. Don’t. Stop. Please.

Most annoying trend: promising shows that are killed in its crib. IIRC, “Cheers” wasn’t exactly a monster ratings hit in its first year. It gradually built its audience over time. Nowadays the networks don’t let this sort of thing happen anymore, hence the cancellation of so many wonderful shows that were never given the chance. “Cupid” is Exhibit A in this department.

Onscreen advertising during shows.

There isn’t enough profanity in the unabridged dictionaries of the world to express the annoyance that overwhelms me when, in the middle of watching an absorbing show that I’ve been looking forward to, a banner ad pops up on the screen, blowing the diogesis all to hell.

And what are they advertising?

Other shows.

I’ve got a freaking TV guide. I can look up when your shows are on. Having content-free reminders of when other shows are on, during the show I’m watching, just makes me less likely to watch either show, for fear that in the middle of some dramatic sequence, the network will plaster a moronic ad for a moronic show over the screen, making it impossible to enjoy the show I was watching.


Let’s see:

Plumbers (“My god, that toilet is going to blow!”)
Computer technicians (Horace has only two hours to debug the code or Windows XQ ships late!)
Wal-mart employees (“We’re almost out of size seven in those loafers in the shoe department.”)
Stockbrokers (“Let’s change the rating from a buy to a hold!”)
Accountant (George finds an $2 error in the tax return).

The point being, that other professions don’t have the same life or death situations that make for good drama.

Sure, you can create a soap opera about any profession, but it’s very difficult to get dramatic stories from professions that only deal with mundane issues. And when you need to do 22 shows a year, you need a premise that allows for as many different possibilities of drama as possible.

Cops, doctors, and lawyers and produce that. Few other professions can.

BTW, comedies work in just about any job situation.

Hear, hear! Allow me to propose a new Thursday Night Lineup:

8:00 p.m.: Take A Number: A look at the trials and tribulations of Scout1222, a bustier-wearing accountant (hey, gotta pull the viewers) whose wacky tax-time clientele includes an exotic dancer with even more exotic investments, an ex-hippie who attempts to pay for Scout’s services with a 25-year-old dime bag, and a dog who’s inherited the $20 million estate of his dearly departed Human Papa.

9:00 p.m.: Don’t ask ME: The unprofitable yet highly entertaining adventures of auntie em, Director of Information Services and Planning at a four-person non-profit agency that always smells like pee. Although she dreams of one day owning and operating a writer’s colony, all she seems to write these days are checks to the people who come to fix exploding things in her house, or to the vet who cares for her THREE dogs and two rats.

10:00 p.m.: The News According to Why A Duck: No dancing kangaroos. No Elephant Poo Bowling at the zoo. No exposes on kids who steal candy bars from the 7-11. Just the stuff that’s going to affect you directly, delivered by a smart, unattractive person (not talking about Why A Duck) who neither has big hair nor talks as though he/she is attempting to keep tongue from touching any surface on the inside of his/her mouth. The show’s motto: “Just the shit that’s important.” We stand by it.