Talking about television is not ruining television

When you run in certain circles online or follow a bunch of people in the same field on Twitter, certain events or pieces become “things.” Over the last 36 hours, the “thing” has been Ryan McGee’s piece about The Sopranos and the HBO model’s impact on television narrative. McGee’s well-reasoned and detailed piece created a … Continue reading Talking about television is not ruining television

Test Pilot: File #36, Profit

Test Pilot #36: Profit Debut date: April 8, 1996 Series legacy: Known for its dark, complicated story and even darker lead character; thought to be ahead of its time Welcome back to Test Pilot guys and gals! With that extra-special Joss Whedon Theme Week behind us, it’s time to fall back into the typical, but … Continue reading Test Pilot: File #36, Profit

Test Pilot: File #29, Lucky Louie

Test Pilot #29: Lucky Louie Debut date: June 11, 2006 Series legacy: Louis C.K.’s first major foray into television, and one that should be forgotten For nearly a decade-and-a-half, HBO has been the biggest power player in the television industry. More than any other individual network or entity, HBO has shaped our perceptions of quality … Continue reading Test Pilot: File #29, Lucky Louie

Test Pilot: File #27, Carnivàle

Test Pilot #27: Carnivàle Debut date: September 7, 2003 Series legacy: A rabidly-beloved series that was deemed too dense and too slow for even the refined pallets of HBO’s audience For nearly a decade-and-a-half, HBO has been the biggest power player in the television industry. More than any other individual network or entity, HBO has … Continue reading Test Pilot: File #27, Carnivàle

Quality television-by-the-numbers: On AMC’s continued misguided laziness

This is not a review for the pilot episode of Hell on Wheels. You see because I don’t think I could barely muster up more than 150 words about that initial offering. At the pilot stage, Hell on Wheels is dull, sloppy, clunky and generally trying to do way too many different things without accomplishing … Continue reading Quality television-by-the-numbers: On AMC’s continued misguided laziness

Compelled, not connected: On my lack of emotional connection to Boardwalk Empire (and why it doesn’t matter)

I don’t know about you folks, but to like a television program, I have to feel some connection to the characters in that program. I don’t necessarily have to adore every lead or cry when a character gets murdered, but I almost always have to care, in some way. Clearly everyone is different and what … Continue reading Compelled, not connected: On my lack of emotional connection to Boardwalk Empire (and why it doesn’t matter)

Test Pilot: File #19, St. Elsewhere

Test Pilot #19: St. Elsewhere Debut date: October 26, 2982 Series' legacy: Another jewel in the MTM crown, one of -- if not the -- most-heralded medical drama of all-time Authorship is a really tricky thing and perhaps no more so than in the world of television. Numerous scholars have discussed the problems with analyzing television … Continue reading Test Pilot: File #19, St. Elsewhere

Surveillance Summer Watch: Hill Street Blues, “Hill Street Station”

This is the next post in 2011's Surveillance Summer Watch series featuring Cheers and Hill Street Blues. For the next couple of months, I'll be writing weekly reviews of episodes from each series' first seasons, with Cheers on Tuesdays and Hill Street Blues on Thursdays. For more information, see this post. Just a quick house-keeping … Continue reading Surveillance Summer Watch: Hill Street Blues, “Hill Street Station”

Aimless Prognosticating: Predicting the Television Golden Globe Awards: Series Categories

I feel like I probably know the answer to the primary question of this post. We all know that the Golden Globe Awards are a crock, especially when in reference to television. I originally wanted to write a post discussing whether or not it was worthwhile to even predict the outcome of the Golden Globe … Continue reading Aimless Prognosticating: Predicting the Television Golden Globe Awards: Series Categories

Musings on the Emmy submissions and the importance of the awards

This past weekend brought us the full ballots for this year's Emmy awards (PDFs for writing, directing and performing), which means we can now see who submitted what and try to deduce why. The one thing that I've learned over the past few years of following the Emmys very closely is that the submissions are … Continue reading Musings on the Emmy submissions and the importance of the awards