Sunday, May 22, 2011

Awesome Shows Getting Canceled

Network television has just finished its yearly upfronts season, the weird time when NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox, and the CW decide what shows are going to be picked up for the Fall, and try to convince advertisers to buy as much advertising time on them as possible. Hurrah!

I'll admit to being pretty excited about some of the new shows coming down the line (Will Arnett, Christina Applegate, and Maya Rudolph all in one place? Yes please!), but as we all know, some shows had to go by the wayside to make room for more. And so my yearly mourning period begins - when I have to sigh and grapple with some really awesome shows being canceled.

This year, my "Aw crap" moments came for just a few shows. The Chicago Code comes to mind first, starring the amazingness that is Jennifer Beals. This cop show, focused on bringing down corruption within Chicago's government, was skillfully written and equally well acted. It also featured cutie patootie Matt Lauria from Friday Night Lights (one of my mourned shows from last year) and Jason Clarke as a wise ass detective team.

"Sorry you had to actually pay attention to the words of dialogue, America."

I also felt like I could've gotten a little more into Mr. Sunshine if they gave it a chance, although Matthew Perry has already scooted back to rehab, so that might not have worked out anyway.

I won't regurgitate a list of "Canceled Too Soon" shows here; that already exists in about 1000 other places on the internet, featuring classics such as Freaks and Geeks, Arrested Development, Veronica Mars, Pushing Daisies, etc. etc. etc. Rather, I'd like to focus on the upsetting reasons why these shows get canceled. Or rather, one reason.

America is dumb.

I could rest my case there, but what the heck, let's talk about it further. America seems to get super sleepy and apathetic when a show arises that requires one to:

a) follow the characters and their stories over several episodes
b) concentrate on dialogue that might be fast or witty
c) think

That's really what it boils down to. The shows that consistently get the best ratings involve ex-"celebrities" dancing like fools in stupid outfits, randos singing to Aerosmith and J Lo, OR Mark Harmon running around arresting criminals. Then of course there's Glee, which I've already ranted about elsewhere on the internet.

It's too much of a generalization to say everyone who watches these shows is dumb (especially because my friends and family, the only ones who read this blog, are viewers themselves). I'm all for escapist entertainment where you don't have to think much, and I'm not saying every show I watch should be racking up the Emmys. Although Hoarders should give everyone who works on it awards just for being willing to go into those disgusting houses.

"There's an Emmy buried somewhere in here!"

I also understand how difficult it is to keep up with a show that relies on knowing what happened the last episode. But in an age where it's so easy to pop onto,,, etc., and catch up on anything you've missed, I truly think everyone can make the effort! I don't even have a DVR and I keep up with no less than 15-20 shows. To answer your next question, no, I don't have much of a life, but that's besides the point. I am a committed fan!

All I ask is that next time you hear a show is smart, witty, and interesting, try to sit down and watch it. Make the effort.* Even if it means skipping a week of watching Kirstie Alley humiliate herself again. She'll still be there next time around.

This literally hurt my soul.

*Especially if you have a Nielsen box! For God's sake, watch good shows!

1 comment:

  1. smart girl, you know the pure amazingness that is jbeals. sigh.