When Good Shows Go Bad

“This is the way the world ends, not with a bang but a whimper” The question is; is this how we want our shows to end? It seems silly to quote Eliot when talking about something as trivial as television, but as an avid TV watcher, I’ve seen too many shows get cancelled before their time and far too many last beyond their prime.

So this is the question; is it better to cancel a TV show prematurely or to let it go on too long? I think I already have my answer for this one as a lover of doomed TV shows. I’m not going to be that annoying guy that’s like “Oh, but I watched it first” but when it comes to shows like “Arrested Development”, I watched it since day one. Don’t get me wrong, I agree with people’s outrage that the show got cancelled, but at the same time, it’s definitely possible in my mind that it had run its course. It ended with a strong finish, even though no one really saw it coming and I almost prefer that.

But then you have to consider Hollywood’s latest trend of turning TV shows into movies. It used to be older shows that my generation wouldn’t have watched in the first place, i.e. Starsky & Hutch. But since then, it’s lent itself to the cult classic TV shows such as Strangers with Candy or “Firefly” basically being turned into Serenity. Now I have no complaints about these shows turned movies, but for the most part, it’s nothing I haven’t seen before. Usually it’s just a cheap bid to get more people interested or an extremely long episode.

Still, my biggest fear came to life May 30, 2008. Okay, well, that may have been a bit melodramatic, but I guess I just realized then that more of the characters I loved wasn’t always a good thing. I admit to being a “Sex & the City” fan. For the most part, I could really get behind what carrie was saying. Now every so often, Charlotte would go on a rampage about wanting a baby and I didn’t fully get that, but for the most part, it was a product of good writing and solid acting. By the time Sex & the City came out, I’d already said goodbye to these characters. Furthermore, the giantesses on the movie screen were not the women I’d been ashamed to have spent 6 years with. These women were shallow and vapid and self-pitying. They simply weren’t the same.

I’m not saying, just accept it when a show is cancelled prematurely. I guess I’m saying, take a look on the bright side. I’ve stuck around with shows that have lasted past their prime and the end result was resentment for having ever watched it in the first place. However, those shows that were cancelled before their time, they have the unique privilege of being re-watchable for some reason. I can never seem to get enough of my shows that have been cancelled before I’d had a chance to say my goodbyes. So in the end, looks like Eliot was right. At least he was about my TV world. I’d much prefer it to end with a bang than to slowly fade out.


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