Jump to content
rllmuk
Sign in to follow this  
Treble

TV Gone Bad: when shows make terrible decisions

Recommended Posts

 

31 minutes ago, Vimster said:

Prison Break - really should have ended after season one. How they managed to stretch that out is beyond me.

 

I'd vote to keep season 2. You need a season to resolve the story of the two brothers, show how they survived while on the run, and deal with the peripheral characters with whom they escaped. Season 3-5 seemed unnecessary, though I'm wiling to be convinced otherwise.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, knightbeat said:

 

 

I'd vote to keep season 2. You need a season to resolve the story of the two brothers, show how they survived while on the run, and deal with the peripheral characters with whom they escaped. Season 3-5 seemed unnecessary, though I'm wiling to be convinced otherwise.

"Uhm what if they have to escape from ANOTHER prison? Eh? Eh?" followed by "Uhm just to mix it up, why don't they break INTO something instead of OUT? Genius eh?"

 

Everything after S2 was doomed to be shit, the core concept just doesn't work beyond one season. Two seasons maybe, when you use the second season as an epilogue of sorts as you say.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Vimster said:

Totally. for years they had set up the condition for that show to end, they reached that in a decent episode... then came back with that stupid Batman and Robin rubbish. It was so disappointing, in fact I was disappointed as I sat there and saw them appear, awful.

 

Yeah, no. The Batman and Robin rubbish was part of the good finale trilogy - when they became millionaires and literally walked off into the sunset. It was when it came back again that it was shit. 

  • Upvote 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 17/08/2019 at 16:18, DeciderVT said:


It's interesting to see that much interest in a series dissipate so quickly. I feel really sorry for everybody who put real effort and passion into making it, only to be let down by half-interested showrunners that appear to have become bored of their own project.

I keep eyeing my Blu-rays of S1 and S2 and there's a part of me that knows I'll probably never watch them again now.

 

 


I've started my first re-watch of Breaking Bad, five years after the series ended. It's not something I usually do- I'm enjoying it a lot but there are some interesting missteps along the way that I couldn't see Gilligan making now. BCS feels like the superior programme and I suspect that it's because they'd honed their skills on BB.

 

Just out of interest, what Breaking Bad mis steps did you see? I still rate BB as the best drama ever but after watching it for the third time started to notice a few flaws myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Mawdlin said:

 

Just out of interest, what Breaking Bad mis steps did you see? I still rate BB as the best drama ever but after watching it for the third time started to notice a few flaws myself.

 

Marie's story arc never really went anywhere for one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 16/08/2019 at 13:35, Stigweard said:

 

For me Greys Anatomy is a prime example of when something outstayed its welcome. I genuinely loved the show for several seasons, even with some of the outlandish episodes, it had heart, some great drama and full of really funny moments. It also had surprises that were genuinely gut punching (if you've seen the show, I'll just say George). But as it started getting on, actors left, new characters weren't as interesting, storylines just kept going round in circlesa and a fall out between Patrick Dempsey and the shows writter/producer resulted in the shitest ending for such a beloved character. I gave up around season 12, but my wife still watches and its now on season 15, renewed for 16 and 17 I believe.

 

I was getting bored by it anyway but the final straw for me was when they had this amazing cliff hanger episode and thought it was back on track, but then the next episode centred around a group of the doctors called to another hospital to help out with something. The episode didnt mean anything or touch on the cliffhanger once. It was this shitty random epsiode they stuck on that meant nothing and I just decided it wasnt worth my time anymore.

 

Season 8 is where I threw in the towel. I wasn't massively invested in it and was just watching it as the missus was but after the fallout of the plane crash I actively did something else while she watched it. Absolute fucking garbage.

 

On 17/08/2019 at 16:18, DeciderVT said:

I've started my first re-watch of Breaking Bad, five years after the series ended. It's not something I usually do- I'm enjoying it a lot but there are some interesting missteps along the way that I couldn't see Gilligan making now. BCS feels like the superior programme and I suspect that it's because they'd honed their skills on BB.

 

I remember Breaking Bad being excellent after the end of S3, but there was an awful lot of filler there before that. This is the problem when they make 22 episodes a season because of advertising revenue. I don't think I could get through all of it again.

 

Surprised noone has said the Simpsons yet. Around season 8ish is where the good ends. When they started the formula of completely random events in the first ten minutes compared to the last twelve is where they lost me. They traded humour for wackiness and it was shit.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Mawdlin said:

 

Just out of interest, what Breaking Bad mis steps did you see? I still rate BB as the best drama ever but after watching it for the third time started to notice a few flaws myself.


I'm only just on to the third series at the moment so there are probably more. They're minor though- little things I'm not sure would exist in their current form if written today.

- The Twins. Goodness.
- The music video
- Hank in the El Paso office
- Gus openly doing business with Walt at a table in his restaurant

Some of it is retrospective- Jimmy/Saul is so much sleazier than he is in BCS ("Thailand, Czech Republic... some of those girls are just grateful to be in the country") but that can't really be helped.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, DeciderVT said:

I'm only just on to the third series at the moment so there are probably more. They're minor though- little things I'm not sure would exist in their current form if written today.

 

The twins and Gus doing business in his restaurant also happened in the latest series of BCS. The music video?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Chadruharazzeb said:

 

The twins and Gus doing business in his restaurant also happened in the latest series of BCS. The music video?


The guitar band at the beginning of one of the episodes. Gus going to such lengths to point out that he's careful rings a bit hollow when he's brokering $3 million meth deals a few metres away from his employees a couple of episodes later. I maintain that the twins are still ridiculous- calmly walking away from that exploding truck was just silly.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Mr. Gerbik said:

In terms of an obvious single moment or event that clearly caused an immediate and unrecoverable turn for the worse, I can't think of a better example than Niles and Daphne getting together in Frasier.

 

The programme was past its peak by the time Daphne learned that Niles was infatuated with her, and there was definitely a drop in quality when they got together - but only a slight one, and there were still plenty of great episodes afterwards that would be the envy of most other sitcoms.

 

I think the later season where Daphne's mum comes to stay represents a bigger drop in quality (though again, even that run contains good episodes).

 

6 hours ago, SeanR said:

well, that's just an example of jumping the shark.

 

I wouldn't describe it like that. Some people have broader definitions, but I think of shark-jumping as when you can point to a specific episode with an outrageous, implausible gimmick that has few traces of what appealed about the show in the first place. With Frasier, I think that only really applies to the episode in the last season that ends with Martin in a dream musical number, and maybe a couple of other episodes like the caviar one where the farce ideas were taken too far. (The episode where Niles makes the halfway-line basketball shot was also very much an outrageous, implausible gimmick, but I'll forgive that because it was a good episode!)

 

Daphne discovering Niles' love for her was, I assume, more a case of the writers thinking that keeping her oblivious for much longer would stretch credibility and offer diminishing returns for jokes. So they decided to make the jump and bring them together in the hope of getting new comedic possibilities out of it.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, moosegrinder said:

Surprised noone has said the Simpsons yet. Around season 8ish is where the good ends. When they started the formula of completely random events in the first ten minutes compared to the last twelve is where they lost me. They traded humour for wackiness and it was shit.

 

I don't think The Simpsons really fits Treble's first post in this thread, which said "I'm thinking not so much about great shows that faded because they ran on to long and out of ideas, but the ones that made baffling and egregious choices when things were still chugging along nicely."

 

I think that The Simpsons' decline was more the former: a gradual fade-out, rather than a specific, disruptive event. People can blame specific events for marking the point of no return ("The Principal and the Pauper", directors and writers leaving to focus on Futurama and King of the Hill, Mike Scully becoming showrunner, the death of Phil Hartman) but I don't think it's any one thing.

 

IMO season 8 definitely has a different feel from what came before, but it's hard for me to really judge how, because my overriding mental dividing line for that season is that it marks the point where I stopped getting Sky One and didn't see those episodes until they turned up on BBC2.

 

Season 9 (the first Scully season) had a definite decline but there's still lots of Pure Gold in there.

 

Season 10 contains "Homer Simpson in: 'Kidney Trouble'" and "Monty Can't Buy Me Love", the first Simpsons episodes that I would call outright bad.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Breaking Bad suffers in the same way as other TV shows, in having to front load the plot in order to make sure the show took off. I mean, I am not sure if they planned the whole arc from day one, but it turned into Mr. Normal's descent into evil, which rather needs to leave aside the fact that

he murdered someone in episode one.

The Shield had a simiar issue. The worst thing they ever did (by their morality) was all wrapped up in episode one.

  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Nick R said:

 

I don't think The Simpsons really fits Treble's first post in this thread, which said "I'm thinking not so much about great shows that faded because they ran on to long and out of ideas, but the ones that made baffling and egregious choices when things were still chugging along nicely."

 

I think that The Simpsons' decline was more the former: a gradual fade-out, rather than a specific, disruptive event. People can blame specific events for marking the point of no return ("The Principal and the Pauper", directors and writers leaving to focus on Futurama and King of the Hill, Mike Scully becoming showrunner, the death of Phil Hartman) but I don't think it's any one thing.

 

IMO season 8 definitely has a different feel from what came before, but it's hard for me to really judge how, because my overriding mental dividing line for that season is that it marks the point where I stopped getting Sky One and didn't see those episodes until they turned up on BBC2.

 

Season 9 (the first Scully season) had a definite decline but there's still lots of Pure Gold in there.

 

Season 10 contains "Homer Simpson in: 'Kidney Trouble'" and "Monty Can't Buy Me Love", the first Simpsons episodes that I would call outright bad.

 

Yeah I'd read 4 pages by then and forgot, but some would say that it changed when Sam Simon left (season 5?). But that's a different thing again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Following. Season 1 was brilliant, gripping stuff. Great ending to the first season.

 

Then we got to season 2 with all the interpersonal shit with the other cult and it just bored me to the point where I never bothered finishing the season. 

 

I hear season 3 was even worse.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This probably won't be a popular choice, but...

 

tp_pancakes.0.thumb.jpeg.bea694ee3b706922e2ffcfcf259df8ec.jpeg

 

I like Dougie... but I love Coop so much more, and Dougie's ongoing presence felt like a bizarre and cruel middle finger from Lynch for such a long part of the series.

  • Upvote 3
  • Empathy 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/08/2019 at 15:15, Mr. Gerbik said:

"Uhm what if they have to escape from ANOTHER prison? Eh? Eh?" followed by "Uhm just to mix it up, why don't they break INTO something instead of OUT? Genius eh?"

 

Everything after S2 was doomed to be shit, the core concept just doesn't work beyond one season. Two seasons maybe, when you use the second season as an epilogue of sorts as you say.

I actually preferred season 2 of Prison Break!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, DeciderVT said:

I like Dougie... but I love Coop so much more, and Dougie's ongoing presence felt like a bizarre and cruel middle finger from Lynch for such a long part of the series.

 

It was, in a way, but it made

 

 

the bit when Coop FINALLY re-emerged probably the most triumphant moment I've ever seen in a TV show. I was really beginning to wonder if it was ever going to happen.

 

I think Twin Peaks season 3 is probably the finest TV I've ever watched. It didn't give one single shit what anybody thought should happen, it did its own thing all the way through. I'm not sure we'll ever see its like again.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Garwoofoo said:

 

It was, in a way, but it made

 

  Hide contents

the bit when Coop FINALLY re-emerged probably the most triumphant moment I've ever seen in a TV show. I was really beginning to wonder if it was ever going to happen.

 

I think Twin Peaks season 3 is probably the finest TV I've ever watched. It didn't give one single shit what anybody thought should happen, it did its own thing all the way through. I'm not sure we'll ever see its like again.



There's a lot I didn't like about it (poor Audrey!) but
 

Spoiler

Coop's re-emergence was just too late in the series for me personally, after all those years of wondering what happened to him in the Black Lodge. Those parts with him changing history and leading Laura through dark woods was just magical. I really wanted more of that than him being comatose and shouted at.


There were some great parts in it though.
 

Spoiler

Phillip Jeffries' final form! Such a nice send-off for Bowie after FWWM.


I hope there's more in future.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Only Fools and Horses, as previously mentioned, came back, because, in the words of Alan Partridge, "people like them, lets make moooore of them". Sadly for OFAH every episode (apart from the Gary one) absolutely sucked, they were basically just everyone going through the process.  Having said that, for me Only Fools started to lose it when they introduced the ongoing storylines in the first place. Early episodes have a 30 minute play feel about them, with often the entire episode taking place in the flat, and three characters.  The series had some peaks with the Diamond smuggling episode and the amazing Jolly Boys Outing, but it was after this when Raquel, Cassandra and Damien came into the show that you just think, who cares?  And then when Cassandra had a miscarriage in the Xmas day special, they lost my goodwill completely.  Hey granny, get the telly on, come on kids, only fools and horses is on, let's settle down in front of the telly for some big christmas chuckles.

 

But for me, the big one is Arrested Development.  It was always a bit weird that the show got cancelled as it did, with many people loving it - it always seemed a successful show but apparently it wasn't commercially successful and it ended rather bluntly.  However, Arrested Development is absolutely brilliant and definitely worth watching.  Problem is, Netflix stepped in and made more of them.  You can see the issues they faced as actors are obviously green-screened into shots because of logistical issues.  The new series had the same writer, but they made each episode about one character so it felt very different.  They apparently realised this mistake because they remixed the whole series and re-released it. Both versions of series 4 are now out on Netflix and I don't know how the viewer is supposed to decide which version to watch.  Now they have made a series 5, and I watched the first episode and found it jumpy and chaotic and it's really hard for me to get my head around the issue that this is a programme I really like, yet there's a whole series of it I have not started and it's been out a year.

 

I just think that they should leave the writers and creative teams to make their vision and leave them to it.  Other examples in the thread (Lost def springs to mind) seem to follow this same narrative.  The writers make a show, the audience loves it so the writers are contracted to make more of it.  They keep making more, often losing the thread of what made the show so special, or padding out content to stretch a 2 series story arc to a 6 series narrative, and when everyone gets bored they silently bring it to a conclusion.  I'm never going to watch the last 9 series of The X Files despite being an uber-fan in 1994 because there's just too much of it.  I find it so strange that there's something out there that I love that I'm not going to bother with.  If the executives and money men allowed the creators to create uninterrupted, you'd probably have a 2 season long series called Lost that was the best bit of telly ever, followed by two other, different shows by the creators that went on to make their next thing.  Instead you get a six series long show that everyone loved once but is now famous for losing its way and being a bit shit by the end.  In ten years time, if you recommend Arrested Development to someone, they'll binge it and come away thinking it started well and tailed off halfway through, because they won't know that it's basically 2 different shows.  

 

See also how all my friends love star wars but now the group gets smaller with every new film and some of them didn't bother going to see Solo at all. Big Star Wars fans, that didn't go and see the Star Wars films, makes no sense, but I understand their reasons.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 19/08/2019 at 15:59, moosegrinder said:

I remember Breaking Bad being excellent after the end of S3, but there was an awful lot of filler there before that. This is the problem when they make 22 episodes a season because of advertising revenue. I don't think I could get through all of it again.

 

Breaking Bad only has 13 episodes a season, except for the first (7 episodes) and last (16, with a distinct split).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Fry Crayola said:

 

Breaking Bad only has 13 episodes a season, except for the first (7 episodes) and last (16, with a distinct split).

Fair, I didn't check. I thought it was much longer than that. It seemed much longer than that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, moosegrinder said:

Fair, I didn't check. I thought it was much longer than that. It seemed much longer than that.

 

I totally agree though, as wonderful as Breaking Bad is, it's the 4th to 6th series where it becomes fantastic - parts of series 3 where Jessie has people living in his house, really drag.  It'a lucky that the it's all shorter runs, because it's still very watchable as a box set. a 24 episode series would risk ruining it all halfway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tell you what I have noticed due to recent viewings that  I totally didn't notice at the time....

 

If you watch Friends from the beginning you can really see when the show got successful and how this affected the writing.  When the show became as huge as it did, the cast and writers all stuck together to make sure they were compensated for the success of the show, and negotiated pay deals that were equal to each other but also massive (a rumoured million dollars per cast member, and the writing team got way more than other shows' writers at the time too). This is fair and I'm not knocking it (the show still earns ridiculous sums for all involved and it's only fair that the cast get a relevant proportion of it), but you can see how the scripts revolve around product placement. 

 

If you watch episode one, it's a bunch of little know, fresh faced actors.  In series 5 onwards they all look like models from the catalogue, and they have episodes that are basically product placement throughtout:

 

  • The One Where Phoebe likes Pottery Barn
  • The one where they spend 30 minutes saying how wonderful the homemade cookies are, only to learn that they are Nestle Tollhouse brand.
  • The one where Phoebe gets a Miss Pac Man Machine
  • The ones where Rachel works at Ralph Lauren and Bloomingdales
  • The onewhere Chandler loves smoking and spends the whole episode saying how wonderful it tastes.  I'm convinced that's product placement.
  • The one where Chandler replies "You're getting him a Sony Playstation?" in response to "the best give you can give.

The thing is, there was always product placement, and that's par for the course in an American sitcom, but in Friends it's really obvious how entire storylines and plotpoints revolve around obvious adverts and it seems to get worse every series. I barely noticed it at the time, but maybe I've got older and I'm more cynical about the whole thing.  Either way, it's really distracting.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, dumpster said:

Tell you what I have noticed due to recent viewings that  I totally didn't notice at the time....

 

If you watch Friends from the beginning you can really see when the show got successful and how this affected the writing.  When the show became as huge as it did, the cast and writers all stuck together to make sure they were compensated for the success of the show, and negotiated pay deals that were equal to each other but also massive (a rumoured million dollars per cast member, and the writing team got way more than other shows' writers at the time too). This is fair and I'm not knocking it (the show still earns ridiculous sums for all involved and it's only fair that the cast get a relevant proportion of it), but you can see how the scripts revolve around product placement. 

 

If you watch episode one, it's a bunch of little know, fresh faced actors.  In series 5 onwards they all look like models from the catalogue, and they have episodes that are basically product placement throughtout:

 

  • The One Where Phoebe likes Pottery Barn
  • The one where they spend 30 minutes saying how wonderful the homemade cookies are, only to learn that they are Nestle Tollhouse brand.
  • The one where Phoebe gets a Miss Pac Man Machine
  • The ones where Rachel works at Ralph Lauren and Bloomingdales
  • The onewhere Chandler loves smoking and spends the whole episode saying how wonderful it tastes.  I'm convinced that's product placement.
  • The one where Chandler replies "You're getting him a Sony Playstation?" in response to "the best give you can give.

The thing is, there was always product placement, and that's par for the course in an American sitcom, but in Friends it's really obvious how entire storylines and plotpoints revolve around obvious adverts and it seems to get worse every series. I barely noticed it at the time, but maybe I've got older and I'm more cynical about the whole thing.  Either way, it's really distracting.

 

I really think you are reaching on most of those.

  • Upvote 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.