I received the book Prime Time, Prime Movers for Christmas and have been plowing through it over the last week or so. As these things go, reading a book about the big individual creative forces in television history has me thinking about contemporary writer/producers. Therefore, today, I debut a new occasional feature where I will discuss … Continue reading Showrunner Series: Ryan Murphy = Matthew Weiner (Except, you know, awful)
The accused: Arrested Development, “For British Eyes Only” (Season 3, Episode 2) The crime: Losing control of the series’ successful and innovative frameworks Television’s failures are supposed to be obvious. From the overhyped non-starters that flop from the very beginning (hello, FlashForward, Lone Star) to the much-discussed clumsy conclusions of series we were convinced had it all … Continue reading #TVFail Entry 16: Arrested Development, “For British Eyes Only”
Tonight, the finale to Sons of Anarchy's third season airs on FX. It's a 90 minute episode that, as you can see, showrunner Kurt Sutter has been hyping on Twitter. The last two Sons finales have been pretty damn great, as have the other extended episodes of the series so I should be filled with … Continue reading How much can a great ending save a mediocre (or worse) season?
Syfy's biggest hit since changing its name -- still can't get over that -- is Warehouse 13. The second season of the series begins Tuesday, July 6 and all the promos the various NBCU networks and channels have been running reminded me that I never watched the series last summer -- even though I wanted … Continue reading Two days, 12 episodes — Entering Warehouse 13’s first season
Over the next few weeks, I’ll be summarizing my thoughts on many of the series that ended just as the “official” television season came to a close recently. Overview: The season one finale of Fringe pushed the series into new, better territory and gave us fans all hope for the second season. And almost every … Continue reading 2009-10 season wrap: Fringe
Ed Note: I'm simply trying to post various academic pieces I've written over the past few years in case anyone wants to check them out. The following was completed in the spring of 2009, so certain portions might be out of date a little. I'm in the process of updating it. Television programs with “cult … Continue reading The new “cult”: Evaluating changes in cult television through Supernatural
In a move that should shock no one, ABC has canceled FlashForward. After coming into the season with an impressive looking pilot and the most buzz for a new drama series, it all fell apart for ABC and the series pretty quickly. So yet another Lost clone has fallen. What, if anything, did we learn … Continue reading FlashForward is no more — What can we learn?
For fans of serialized television, nothing is more important than answers. Though some might claim they love the characters or individual episodes, gun to head, most fans of Lost would probably say they're watching because they want answers to the questions that have been posed. What I've noticed this season by watching two serialized programs … Continue reading The slow burn versus the really slow burn — Evaluating responses to the distribution of answers in Lost and Fringe
I've talked a lot about serialization here on the blog, and it's just as popular elsewhere (check out a nice post from Myles McNutt on Justified), partially because it's the end of two major serial powerhouses in Lost and 24 and also because I think people just love talking about it. So why not continue … Continue reading What’s the future of serialization on broadcast TV?
Rumors abound that Sony, producers of Damages, is looking to DirecTV for help in paying for a fourth season. Not to be a contrarian here, but is this really necessary? Sure, Damages is a critically acclaimed, narratively complex drama that gives FX and Sony a lot of cultural cache. Glenn Close is fantastic in every … Continue reading DirecTV to save ‘Damages?’
I'll say it, I love professional wrestling. Have ever since I was six years old way back in 1994 when I randomly started watching on a semi-regular basis. Through the Monday Night Wars, the WCW buyout and the current "PG" era of the WWE, there's one individual that kept me coming back every week -- … Continue reading Thank you, Shawn — Celebrating the performance of one of wrestling’s greatest
Curious as to what this all means? Read my introduction to this multi-post series. Of all the networks I researched for this project, I think ABC's results surprised me the most. And that's not a good thing. So what is the format of these posts? I'm not exactly sure. I'll play ABC this way and … Continue reading Innovations, er, “Innovations” from broadcast networks — ABC
A lot of ink has been spilled about the future of serial television, but even if I do not think that it is "going away" or "dying," I've recently been thinking about how troubling it is to be a fan of these types of series. As a fan of serial television, there are usually two … Continue reading Fandom and serial TV — Letting go, holding on
Last week, rumblings were that 24 would finish out its eight-year run this May on FOX. Now, Ausiello is reporting that 20th Century Fox (the studio) is pitching the series to NBC, who obviously need space-fillers on its schedule. One question for NBC: why? Let's break this down a little bit. What are the primary … Continue reading Should NBC pause the ticking clock on ’24?’
As we've all seen over the past month, the end of Lost has sparked a slew of different conversations about the future of television, formats, serialization, etc. One move that Lost proponents always cite as the turning point in the series was the agreement to end it all back in 2007. And now, that idea … Continue reading Just end it already! Genre television and end dates