The Fall TV lineup, Or Heroes and everything else.


Honestly, it goes without saying that television these days is nothing but worthless junk spread out over 99% of the day on 4500 channels. It’s gotten to the point where quite often the best thing on TV was made in 1994. Every once in a while a show like Heroes comes along and actually provides us with some entertaining television, but most of the time we get another version of CSI, a new reality show, or Law and Order CAARIWS (Crimes against angry rabbits in white suits) Unit. The main problem is that the studios have no idea what people actually like. Sure, they have a pretty good idea of what people watch, but when it comes to what shows people really enjoy and why they enjoy them, they are clueless. Take for example the new shows on the fall lineup:

ABC – Cavemen (aka ‘it’s like those funny Geiko commercials, see!), Carpoolers (nothing says hilarious like 3 hours of morning traffic), Pushing Daisies, Private Practice, Dirty Sexy Money (…what?), Big Shots, Women’s Murder Club (…?),
CBS – The Big Bang Theory (oh euphemism), Cane, Kid Nation, Moonlight, Viva Laughlin! (musical/drama… I’m bashing my head into my desk right now).
CW – Aliens in America (Never been done before!), Reaper, Gossip Girl, Online Nation (It’s a show about the internets!), CWNow (lolnews?), Life is Wild (rawr?).
FOX – K-Ville (a village of K-feds? I could only dream.), Back to you, Kitchen Nightmares (a reality show about cooking, how unique), American Band (oh boy, more bad music from reality TV stars), Nashville (MORE bad music from reality TV stars – country edition),
NBC – Bionic Woman (Vroommchahahahahhaa), Life (Always look on the bright side of it).

So that is the network TV schedule. Just by the names alone you can tell that the majority of these shows are going to suck. The returning shows aren’t much better. In fact, in the entire network TV lineup only one show is worth watching: Heroes.

And cable isn’t much better. Comedy Central brings us new episodes of Futurama and South Park, but they also bring us new episodes of The Sarah Silverman Program, and for that they cannot be forgiven. FX gives us a heaping wad of nothing. HBO decides that they want to stop offering quality TV. SciFi takes a break from playing movies like Megasnake to give us new Battlestar Galactica. Showtime… well, does anyone even watch Showtime? Finally, USA proves that they can in fact show nothing but Law and Order for 23 hours a day.

As I said, American TV studios have no idea what makes entertaining TV. The key word in that statement is “entertaining.” We have gotten very good at making flashy, quaint, charming, high-budget, and star studded TV, but we have no idea what makes entertaining TV. Lets look at Japanese television and a show called Ninja Warrior. The concept is simple, take people who’ve been training for months and put them on a challenging obstacle course. When they win it is a feel good story of triumph, and when they lose we get to chuckle that they just fell in muddy water. We used to do television like this. We were the nation that brought the world American Gladiators, but now we remake it years later as a reality TV show.



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