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Khan

Shows That Got BETTER Over the Seasons

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21 hours ago, DRW50 said:

 

I used to hear people say season 2 of a show is often the best. I'm not sure about that, although sometimes I agree. 

 

As for Mama's Family, I can't really watch anything from the syndication years for too long without cringing, mostly thanks to the shocking writing for Vint and Naomi. 

 

I agree. Each season Vint and Naomi got dumber and dumber. I loved Naomi in the first two seasons and even the third. She became so different. I liked Vint better dumb but it also made sense how he was written in the first two seasons, chasing after get rich quick schemes. But I thought Ken played it so well sometimes I gave it a pass later on when Vint got too dumb to live. 

 

I always despised how some shows took a dim bulb/naive/simple character and turned them into someone too dumb to exist and live for a laugh (Chrissy Snow, JT but especially Cody on Step by Step, etc.)

 

I can somewhat agree with the Season 2 thing for a lot of shows.

 

It's not that I don't often enjoy Seasons 1 and 2 of some shows, but when I think back, I feel so many classics hit their peak with the middle seasons. And then the last few seasons sort of go off the rails and it's time to end. I do often like sometimes how different a show is in their first two seasons compared to how it ends up. BH90210, Dynasty, Knots, Dallas and MP all come to mind when I think of primetime soaps. For sitcoms, I think Roseanne hit it's stride around Season 2, but Seasons 3 and 4 it was at it's peak. Some shows, like say Three's Company, did it well from the start (but regressed around Season 4/5 and then sort of swung back) ... I don't know, I just felt that, looking back, so many shows were at their peak between Seasons 3-5. I could give more examples but I don't want to write a thesis, lol

On 3/9/2019 at 12:36 AM, SFK said:

I love Valerie Harper, but I think The Hogan Family got better and better. Whenever I watch reruns, I actually miss those characters, and though it's unpopular to champion such things these days, I would love to see them reunited.

 

Rhoda back from the attic: alive! Breaking at 11 :) 

But seriously, they all could reunite. I'd not mind it. I'm still annoyed Family Matters hasn't been. And what happened to Sister Sister's reboot? LOL yet Mad About You is a go. Who knew?

20 hours ago, All My Shadows said:


I can agree with this. All of the growing pains have subsided, but everything is still fresh. I mentioned it when this thread originally hit, but seasons 3-5 were the heyday of Degrassi: The Next Generation. Little House on the Prairie also peaked in those seasons. I'd say Three's Company did the same. It just goes on and on and on.

The exception might be shows that didn't live past season 5, but even in that case, I'll mention it for the third time here that The Brady Bunch was at its best in the last three seasons. God bless those writers for knowing how to grow the stories up as the kids grew up.

 

100% agreed.

 

It makes sense, like you explained, why a show would hit it's stride in the middle season. I just never really thought about it before and the other day was thinking about so many different shows and how I really truly *loved* them in their middle seasons. Not that I don't appreciate the first two seasons but man, so many shows just really hit their stride and it's fun to think about.

 

As I said above already, I do like how some of them were kind of different in the first few seasons and you can see the change and difference. 

 

Not the thread for it, but personally, in the opposite vein, I think Family Matters actually regressed as it went along. The first few seasons were better. 

Edited by KMan101

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I thought of the last few pages of this thread when I was reading this Bill Hader profile (I've been on something of a Bill Hader kick lately - I think if not for my longtime disgust with SNL and anything involving Judd Apatow I would have found him years and years ago).

 

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/03/18/bill-hader-kills

 

(this has spoilers for Barry)

 

“That review was, like, ‘Oh, awesome!’ ” Hader recalled, turning to Berg on set one morning. “And then it was, like, ‘But it’s actually bad, because we’re doing Season 2 now, so . . .’ ”

 

“So tough [!@#$%^&*],” Berg said.

 

In its second season, a show must probe its characters more deeply, while remaining true to their natures, while surprising viewers, while being even more entertaining—a big ask. Among the many recent victims of sophomore slump were “Bloodline,” “The Man in the High Castle,” “13 Reasons Why,” “Mr. Robot,” “Westworld,” and “True Detective.” Matt Stone, the co-creator of “South Park,” said, “With a lot of shows, the third episode of the second season is when you get pissed off, because they’re wasting your time. You feel the media ecosystem’s effect within the frame of the art: ‘We have ten hours to fill, and not enough ideas to fill it.’ As a creator, you don’t quite know why the first season worked, and you’re trying to deconstruct the formula even as you’re trying to surpass it. Our second season was definitely our worst.”

 

A decade ago, Season 2 was a sweet spot. Mike Schur, the co-creator of “Parks and Recreation” and the creator of “The Good Place,” said, “On traditional comedies, the second season was easier, because those shows weren’t really funny until the audience got to know the characters.” The aim was artful stasis. David Shore, who created “House” and runs “The Good Doctor,” said, “You don’t want your character to change—you love your character!—and the audience doesn’t really want him to change. And people don’t really change. So the challenge of TV is to have your character take two steps forward and one and seven-eighths steps back. You want to see them striving to grow.”

 

Television’s shifting business model has shifted the pressures on storytelling. The goal is no longer to produce a hundred discrete episodes and sell them into syndication—where episodes would often be viewed out of order—but to addict viewers with a serialized narrative. “Friday Night Lights” initiated this approach, in its fourth season, when it moved Coach Taylor to a high school in the newly imagined town of East Dillon, to coach a predominantly African-American football team. Jason Katims, who ran the show, said that taking that gamble in 2009 was terrifying: “It used to be that what made TV TV is that the world didn’t change.” Nowadays, shows such as “The Walking Dead” or “The Leftovers” routinely rip up their worlds to start each season fresh. With four hundred and ninety-five scripted shows in production, they almost have to. Schur said, “If a narratively dense show runs in place for too long—like, two episodes—people will just go watch something else.”

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Four hundred and ninety-five scripted shows are in production?  FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY-FIVE?  Dear God!  No wonder people are beginning to feel overwhelmed in their viewing choices!

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1 hour ago, Khan said:

Four hundred and ninety-five scripted shows are in production?  FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY-FIVE?  Dear God!  No wonder people are beginning to feel overwhelmed in their viewing choices!

 

The sad thing is even with that many I often feel like I can't find what I want to watch.

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On 3/9/2019 at 11:33 AM, KMan101 said:

 

I SO agree about The Hogan Family. I love Valerie Harper but my favorite seasons are the later years without her. The only good part about the Valerie years was the chemistry between Valerie Harper and Jason Bateman and how good they both were.

 

Agreed, too. I prefer the Sandy Duncan years when the boys are older. 

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Do they really not know why they have such a hard time going into season 2? It's because, nine times out of then, what they've created is a mini-series, not a full-blown TV series. They pour their hearts and souls into a 10, 15, however many episode season with absolutely no idea what they're going to do once they're past that. And of course, that initial season is hyped to high heavensssssss, so people who aren't IN the know are shocked, shocked I tell ya, when their show wanders around aimlessly for three or four more seasons until it gets shot out back. Revenge, I am staring directly into your emotionless eyes and calling out your hands.

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51 minutes ago, All My Shadows said:

Do they really not know why they have such a hard time going into season 2? It's because, nine times out of then, what they've created is a mini-series, not a full-blown TV series. They pour their hearts and souls into a 10, 15, however many episode season with absolutely no idea what they're going to do once they're past that. And of course, that initial season is hyped to high heavensssssss, so people who aren't IN the know are shocked, shocked I tell ya, when their show wanders around aimlessly for three or four more seasons until it gets shot out back. Revenge, I am staring directly into your emotionless eyes and calling out your hands.

 

There was a great article about this recently : https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/alisonwillmore/i-wish-more-tv-shows-ran-for-just-one-season

 

So many examples of this too. Most recently I enjoyed the Julia Roberts show "Homecoming." It was really interesting, but it told a complete story. Everything was wrapped up. I can't imagine what they will do in season two, and we don't need a season two.

 

"Handmaid's Tale" has to be the biggest current example though. They literally can't change anything because then there would be no show. I thought season two was awful. And, controversial opinion, I prefer the movie to season 1, but season 1 was at least decent.

Edited by juppiter

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On 3/11/2019 at 12:11 PM, Khan said:

Four hundred and ninety-five scripted shows are in production?  FOUR HUNDRED AND NINETY-FIVE?  Dear God!  No wonder people are beginning to feel overwhelmed in their viewing choices!

 

At least they are getting back to more scripted shows instead of all the "reality" crap. 

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