I like TV. In some ways, they are better than movies. Even the supporting characters in a TV series are more interesting than some of the bland stereotypes we see in frantic blockbusters, such as Pacific Rim. Also, it’s nice to know that there will usually be more of your favourite characters. There is always going to be more Doctor Who out there, whereas cult movies normally are a stand-alone breed (and in most cases, sequels destroy their reputation).
But TV has its downsides. All forms of media do. While writing this blog, I have to keep up to date with most TV series, as well as go back and watch some of the old ones to make myself knowledgeable, when it comes to cult shows. Sometimes it can be a bit of a hassle. I thought I would collate some of the drawbacks to TV programmes. Leave a comment if you agree with any of my views.
4 – IT’S A COMMITMENT
TV series kind of remind me of how I feel about books. I am sure anyone who has studied English Literature will know where I am coming from. I loved books as a kid, so when it came to picking an A Level, and then an university degree, English Lit seemed like the logical choice. However, when you get there, your lecturers throw a book at you and ask you to read it in a week. Some of the books were actually really good, but because reading them had been relegated to a chore, I began to hate them. To this day, I cannot sit down and read a book.
TV series are beginning to go that way. Before streaming shows on the internet, you had to be at a certain place at a certain time to watch a show. Even now, if I have a busy week, sitting down to watch that show on BBC iPlayer, suddenly becomes a hassle. I’m a handful of episodes behind on ‘Under the Dome’ and I really can’t bring myself to catch up on it. It’s a shame, because I know I will enjoy them once I end up sitting down and watching it, but movies, with a two hour run time, always seem like a much nicer use of my time.
3 – THEY CAN OVERSTAY THEIR WELCOME
Everyone can usually agree with this one. There’s nothing more heart-destorying than seeing your favourite season slowly descend into mediocrity. I love Dexter, but there seems to be little point in some of the newer seasons. Heroes had an amazing opening season and by the end, it was a laughable excuse for a show. Even light-hearted comedies do this. ‘Only Fools and Horses’ should be one of the more morish shows going, but by the final seasons, it turned into more of a character piece. I know it is fun to dissect some of these characters we love so much, but it often takes away from the jokes, which is why we turned up in the first place. As a side-note, I have bookmarked ‘Big Bang Theory’ for that fate too.
At least with movies, producers sometimes decide to pass on a sequel, as the public cause an outrage over it. I can see people being unwilling to fund another Die Hard. However, with a season, we expect another outing with the characters. That’s when we cannot understand why the show is a former shadow of itself. In some ways, it is our own fault. Sometimes, part of me is glad that Firefly was cancelled, before its content could be tarnished by overstaying its welcome.
2 – THERE’S TOO MUCH OF IT
Do you know how hard it is to keep track of every season going? I have missed out on nearly every great TV show, because I rarely put much faith in new shows. ‘Game of Thrones’ looked awful, but now people say it is the greatest show in years and I have missed that bandwagon. Comedies are the worst for it. Comedies never pitch well, but I was so sure that people were sick of flatmate comedies. But nope, New Girl apparently is awesome and I have got a lot of catching up to do.
Now, I am watching every new season I can (Defiance, The Following, Under the Dome), and a lot of it is rubbish. I am kind of glad Agents of Shield is pretty much a sure thing. I am just drowning in the amount of TV there is out there, but I have grown scared that if I slip up, I am going to miss out on the next big trend. Just once I want to be a part of a hit TV show from the very beginning, rather than always playing catch-up and hiding from spoilers.
1 – THEY’RE NEVER AS GOOD AS YOU WANT THEM TO BE
You know what, a lot of TV has been disappointing me recently. Don’t get me wrong, there’s very rarely a terrible piece of TV, but the premises are always better than the content. For example, we all agree that ‘The Walking Dead’ is good, but should be so much better. ‘Arrow’ also promised us a superhero TV season, but the first half of that season is nearly all family drama. The last season of Doctor Who was almost painful to watch. Basically, I find myself watching TV that should be good, but isn’t really.
I keep telling myself I should stop giving these shows a chance, but truthfully, I can’t help myself. I always expect the next episode of Walking Dead or Arrow to be what I have always expected (and in fairness, they ended up picking up in the end). However, at the end of the day, I can’t complain about TV too much. I get to sit on my ass watching Breaking Bad and pretend I am working. In the words of Icona Pop, I love it!
The commitment to the shows gets me! I end up watching them later when they’ve ended online. Then I can watch as much as I want, start to finish, no pressure. 😛
There is definitely too much TV to keep up with. I don’t see how the pros do it. I’d blow my brains out if I had to keep up even a passing knowledge of everything that’s on. I usually stick to movies, but considering your claim that The Walking Dead “should be SO much better,” you might be interested in a post I recently did on the show. There are better shows, but I’m sincerely mystified by the fact that TWD hasn’t received a single Emmy nomination. Check it out: http://ikeandmikeblog.wordpress.com/2013/07/24/television-academy-to-zombies-drop-dead/