Monthly Archives: March 2013

TV Shows & Trust

This was my final post at my old blog (thehollywoodrant.blogspot.com) and it’s an issue I’ve always been passionate about. To me, there’s nothing worse than investing my time in a television show that gets cancelled without any closure. Having this happen to me way too many times, I’ve found my trust int networks to do right by me slowly dwindling to the point where I’m not willing to give any new show a chance until I’m sure it won’t be cancelled.

As I age I become more hesitant to watch anything new that comes on my television. Work, love, family; these are just a few real-life factors that force us all to have less time for TV as we get older.

But there’s another factor at play here: TRUST. Years and years of withering trust in the shows I watch to give an ending to building story-lines has made me very unwilling to give a new show a chance. Why should I waste my time on anything if they’re not going to finish the story?

I don’t stand alone here. There’s not a single person out there who hasn’t had this happen to them on multiple occasions. It usually happens in the form of struggling shows filming a huge, game-changing finale, complete with cliffhanger ending, all in the hopes of drawing enough interest to save said show. Then the show gets cancelled. This is infuriating, but usually some time passes, the weather heats up, trips to the beach are taken, and I’ve quickly forgotten about it.

Problem is, that’s all fine and dandy the first few times it happens, but sooner or later, trust in the television industry to do right by me and all of the people who invested their time falls apart completely.

For some reason, when a show is cancelled a few episodes in, it feels even worse. Maybe it’s because there’s no summer to wash away the hurt, I don’t know, but it feels worse nonetheless. Recently, a coworker invested her time in Zero Hour, and I begrudgingly invested my time in Do No Harm. Both of these shows were cancelled after only a couple of episodes. We can quickly and easily look back at the two, three hours we wasted and think of all the things we could’ve done instead, or all the other shows we could’ve put our time into instead. I still have four episodes of Shameless to catch up on. Damn, wish I would’ve done that instead.

I believe all of this is causing anger amongst the fans of television, and I’m pretty sure this is playing a role into lower-than-expected ratings for some of the network’s biggest debuts. The networks were expecting big things from the previously mentioned Zero Hour and Do No Harm as well as the earlier debuts of 666 Park Avenue and Last Resort. All of them failed. But even in failure, at least 10 to 20 million different people invested some of their time in at least one of these shows, and stuck with them past their first and second episodes. That adds up to a lot of pissed off people who want to know what happens next.

To solve this problem, I propose that television networks do the following: first, if a show has failed in a prime spot in your schedule, burn off the remaining episodes on Saturday instead of four to six months later in the summer. Second, if a show gets cancelled without a chance to wrap up story-lines, allow the show to film a two-hour TV movie to please the fans and give them some closure. There is no third. This is simply about building that trust back, and if these two steps are followed, the fans will again have trust that their time won’t be wasted because the stories they decide to invest in will be guaranteed to have an ending.

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IF I WERE IN CHARGE: MAGAZINES

This post was a stretch for my topic here, but I do feel that magazines qualify as entertainment. I’m a lover of magazines. I love everything about them, from opening my mailbox to find the latest issue to paging through them, looking for that interesting article. I’m aware that they are on their way out and this post is full of suggestions that will help them change for the better to maybe keep the people like me fans of the forum.

EDIT: I have restructured this post to fit in my “If I Were In Charge” series.

I have always been a lover of magazines. At one point in time, I subscribed to a dozen of them, and right now I have six subscriptions. I’m aware that the internet has decimated the magazine industry, but I also know there are other people out there who still love opening their mailboxes to find the new issue of whatever they are subscribing to.

If there’s any hope for actual hard copy magazines, changes are needed, and if I were in charge…

1. Many of us love to fold our magazines in half to read them. For the first half of the magazine, it’s easiest to fold the left side, and for the second half, it’s easiest to fold the right side. Advertisers have taken note of this and have demanded advertising on the half that doesn’t get folded, making it impossible for the reader to easily fold their magazines in half. First order of business is to change this.

2. Some advertisers have decided it is best for them to use really thick construction paper stock to print their ads. The only way around this for the reader is to tear out the whole page and throw it away. Magazines need to be an enjoyable experience for the reader and things like this and #1 make them a less enjoyable experience, so I’m doing away with this as well.

3. Some magazines have decided that shorter articles are what the reader wants, so they then decided that the way around this was to cut the articles up in a “choose your own adventure” style format: to continue reading, turn to page 87. I’m not doing away with longer articles, but I am doing away with this format.

4. I don’t know a single person who still subscribes to a magazine through those little cardboard mailers that the magazine stuffs into their issues, so why do two or three of them fall out of each issue I receive and another two or three are attached to the inside? Why is my bathroom floor littered with these things? I will make the first page of the magazine filled with information on how to subscribe: A phone number, an internet address, a mailing address.

When I initiate these first 4 changes, I will be well on my way to making a better magazine that is more fun to read. I’m not going to bring them back to where they were, I know that, but I will not continue to alienate the people who still read them, I will bring in new readers and I will help the magazine I’m in charge of survive longer.

Entertainment Weekly Loves Twilight

I like WordPress more than Blogger. Because of this, I’m moving one of my Blogger blogs over here. Rather than start fresh, I’m bringing some of my favorite posts with me, but with intros.

This post is not about hatred of Twilight. If it was, I could’ve easily written about sitting through five movies, eagerly waiting for the climactic battle, only for it to be a dream sequence. No, this post is about Entertainment Weekly and how they gave credit for everything under the sun to Twilight, and how I prove them wrong. Enjoy.

No, there’s nothing inherently wrong with loving Twilight, but what Entertainment Weekly did was absolutely ridiculous to the highest degree. They gave the credit to Twilight for everything that has ever happened in the world and more!

 Hollywood’s obsession with Young Adult novels? Thank you, Twilight. It had nothing to do with Harry Potter, nothing at all. Nope, it was all Twilight!

“Twilight created a tidal wave of interest in the paranormal-vampires, werewolves, zombies…”

Wow, what a sentence. So big and so flawed, it must be deconstructed piece by piece. Let’s start with “vampires.” First off, I guess we have to ignore the books here because if we don’t, then EW crediting Twilight for Vampire Diaries would be all wrong because Vampire Diaries came out in 1991. But the real argument goes to a great show called True Blood. It debuted September 7th, 2008 and was a success for HBO. The first Twilight movie didn’t come out until almost THREE months later. So, the credit for the vampire craze would belong to True Blood, not Twilight.

But don’t forget, Twilight is not just getting credit for vampires, it’s getting credit for ALL paranormal creatures here. So next up, we have zombies.The one-two punch of 28 Days Later and the remake of Dawn of the Dead in 2003 and 2004 ushered in the new age of zombies and began or reinvigorated many people’s love affair with this paranormal creature. Over the next few years, a string of cool, new zombie moves came out in the theaters, but after four years, interest was beginning to wane and the zombie craze went underground for a while, living on in straight to DVD movies. Hollywood was looking for the next paranormal creature to bring back from the dead.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer had been off the air for three years by 2006, and continued to have a dedicated and loyal following. So let’s just rip off Buffy, right? Central female lead? Check. Fall in love with a vampire? Check.

What I’m saying is that a strong and logical argument can be made that Buffy deserves the credit for Twilight, Harry Potter deserves the credit for the explosion of Young Adult novels in Hollywood, True Blood deserves the credit for the vampire craze and 28 Days Later/Dawn of the Dead deserve the credit for the new wave of paranormal creatures in the movies.

A strong and logical argument can’t be made at all that Twilight deserves the credit for any of this. Unless, of course, you’re Entertainment Weekly and you just say it is so.