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(Salon)   Twelve TV shows that went on way past their prime. Sure, it has Glee on the list, but for some reason they put the US version of The Office on it too   (salon.com ) divider line
    More: Fail, Minor Key, television shows, Californication, Glee, The Office, Showtime  
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6785 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 11 Dec 2013 at 9:34 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-12-11 12:19:52 PM  

DMZ DEATH: Supernatural should have packed it in after the Apocalypse.

As Dean would say, " You shut your mouth." I disagree, the show is still good with glimpses of great. I wouldn't mind seeing it bow out after an even 10.
Idget.


I think Supernatural should have ended with Lucifer using Sam as a vessel and Michael using Dean as a vessel as planned and they both regained control and everyone went to Hell, stopping the Apocalypse. It would have been dark as hell but it would have been a perfect symmetrical ending. 

Trainspotr: Lost should have wrapped it up in four seasons. They were never going to end it with an episode as brilliant and moving as "Through the Looking Glass", but they still had some great episodes ahead of them, like "The Constant". If they had streamlined everything from the final three seasons into one, it could have made for some riveting television.


I don't know, I guess it's cliche at this point but I resent the entire series for not having any idea of where they were going and how to end it. It's like starting a film shoot while you're still writing the script.

Seven years seemed to work for the 3 Star Trek series that weren't canceled. DS9 had a singular story arc that was resolved. They knew they were aiming for 7 seasons so it wasn't too short to resolve everything (The Sarah Connor Chronicles) and it wasn't too long that they did everything they wanted and spent the rest of the series with their dicks int heir hand (Supernatural).
 
2013-12-11 12:20:30 PM  
I say this as a big fan* of the show:
Sons of Anarchy.

Season three was maybe four episodes of story stretched into The Season That Didn't Need To Exist. I love Ron P., but Clay should have died long ago. I'm mostly liking the latest few episodes, but all this should have happened in season three or four. "Oh no! It's yet another complication dropped from the sky that will prolong Jax's attempts to go legit! And here comes another one! And another!"

*Still not over Opie.
 
2013-12-11 12:21:15 PM  

Andric: Stile4aly: Ctrl-Alt-Del: DammitIForgotMyLogin: No Dexter?

Yeah, Dexter could have been ended earlier, to much better effect

No BSG?

Frankly, I think that BSG went on for exactly the right length of time. the problem was that the story at the end blew donkey dick

The problem was a badly executed Deux Ex Machina and an insufficient explanation for the Colonists sudden bout of Ludditism.  It's not that either of these things was necessarily a bad idea, they just couldn't make them work.

The best explanation I've heard for Starbuck is that she's the reincarnation of Pythia.

The problem with BSG started well before the last season.  It started after New Caprica with the "Final Five" mystery storyline, which changed the nature of the show.  The writer's strike didn't help matters - the first half of season 4 is basically one long multi-part episode.  The pacing is so bad it's almost laughable.

That said, given how far the show had already gone off the rails, I didn't have any particular problem with the finale.


I think the flaw of the show was the promise from episode 1 that the Cylons had a plan.  The further the show went, the clearer it became that no such plan could exist and if that chaos had been acknowledged and embraced from the start the show wouldn't have had to twist itself into knots.

Ron Moore made a massive mistake by trying to tell an arc driven story without knowing what the end would be in advance, and I think part of that comes from the fact that he cut his teeth in the Star Trek universe where no problem goes unsolved for more than an episode or two.  Despite this, Moore and his writers had enough talent to overcome this fundamental problem for a long time, but as things drew to a close they were painted into a corner.
 
2013-12-11 12:21:53 PM  
i171.photobucket.com


No, seriously.

This show was fine when it was about a family raising five kids, a bit Jesusy without being too Jesusy.  But as the kids started getting older, and each needed their own growing-up problems, the crises became bizarre and unrealistic.  As the kids grew up and got their own lives and families, new kids were brought into the house to replace them (not new like new Becky, new like Chrissy and Luke from Growing Pains), and they were given their own new problems to deal with.  And there's the whole 11th season return thing.

Someone has to agree with me on this one.

/I know way too much about this show.
 
2013-12-11 12:24:12 PM  
"Married With Children" had three seasons too many.
 
2013-12-11 12:26:48 PM  
List fails without Dexter.
 
2013-12-11 12:27:58 PM  
Mugato:

Trainspotr: Lost should have wrapped it up in four seasons. They were never going to end it with an episode as brilliant and moving as "Through the Looking Glass", but they still had some great episodes ahead of them, like "The Constant". If they had streamlined everything from the final three seasons into one, it could have made for some riveting television.

I don't know, I guess it's cliche at this point but I resent the entire series for not having any idea of where they were going and how to end it. It's like starting a film shoot while you're still writing the script.


I'm not going to pretend that the ending would have been better at the end of the fourth season, but I think everything leading up to that would have been much better and less stretched out if they hadn't spent half of the series' run on the denouement. Not to mention, everyone would have spent two fewer years invested in hoping they had an idea where they were going.
 
2013-12-11 12:28:34 PM  

Stile4aly: Ron Moore made a massive mistake by trying to tell an arc driven story without knowing what the end would be in advance, and I think part of that comes from the fact that he cut his teeth in the Star Trek universe where no problem goes unsolved for more than an episode or two


Well DS9 had an overall arc and I never thought that they didn't know where they were going.
 
2013-12-11 12:28:55 PM  

MayoSlather: Orgasmatron138: MASH, Happy Days, and Scrubs are the worst offenders.

I always thought MASH was watchable all the way through, diminished perhaps, but still enjoyable.

That 70's Show's final season was some of the worst TV I've ever seen, which was sad considering how great it was for several years.


Watchable, yes, but in comparison to the show in its peak..... man.  And you are right about That 70s Show. It falls under the same rule as Scrubs and Happy Days - the main character left.

MASH did have a great finale, though. Klinger choosing to stay in Korea was one of the TVs greatest punchlines ever.
 
2013-12-11 12:29:46 PM  

Stile4aly: I think the flaw of the show was the promise from episode 1 that the Cylons had a plan.  The further the show went, the clearer it became that no such plan could exist and if that chaos had been acknowledged and embraced from the start the show wouldn't have had to twist itself into knots.

Ron Moore made a massive mistake by trying to tell an arc driven story without knowing what the end would be in advance, and I think part of that comes from the fact that he cut his teeth in the Star Trek universe where no problem goes unsolved for more than an episode or two.  Despite this, Moore and his writers had enough talent to overcome this fundamental problem for a long time, but as things drew to a close they were painted into a corner.


That whole "They have a plan" thing was something he was against anyway.  I don't know if it was David Eick or studio execs who pushed that, but Moore definitely didn't want it.

Doesn't really speak to the larger problem you mentioned, but still ;)
 
2013-12-11 12:38:27 PM  

Mugato: Stile4aly: Ron Moore made a massive mistake by trying to tell an arc driven story without knowing what the end would be in advance, and I think part of that comes from the fact that he cut his teeth in the Star Trek universe where no problem goes unsolved for more than an episode or two

Well DS9 had an overall arc and I never thought that they didn't know where they were going.


DS9 had more of a setting rather than an arc.  By seasons 6 and 7, the show became much more directional, but other than that it was,more of an anthology of stories told in wartime.
 
2013-12-11 12:42:25 PM  

mcmnky: The US The Office was about Michael Scott.  Series should have ended when he left.


I disagree, because UK Office was about Tim and Dawn. US Office jumped the shark even before Jim and Pam got married.
 
2013-12-11 12:42:51 PM  

whizbangthedirtfarmer: I would say that shows like Farscape, Breaking Bad, and The Wire are the only ones that seemed to have a definite and decent end.


I would add Babylon 5 as an "almost" in that category,  though the last minute "will we be renewed" shenanigans at the end of season 4 really marred the story - made the final season seem like an afterthought.

And I didn't mind the end of the Sopranos, though others will disagree.

 

Mugato: I don't know, I guess it's cliche at this point but I resent the entire series [Lost] for not having any idea of where they were going and how to end it. It's like starting a film shoot while you're still writing the script.


I agree, and will add that it is infuriating that they spent the first two or three seasons reassuring everyone that they knew exactly where it was going, and exactly how it would end.


You hear me, Cuse and Lindelof? Knowing what the final scene is going to be is not "knowing where you are going" nor is it even remotely akin to writing (or even planning) an actual story arc, you stupid, lazy, self important hacks
 
2013-12-11 12:44:28 PM  
blogs.westword.com
 
2013-12-11 12:49:47 PM  

Orgasmatron138: MASH, Happy Days, and Scrubs are the worst offenders.


The author of the article is obviously much too young to know the first two even existed.

BTW...Hee Haw ran for something like 20yrs...
 
2013-12-11 12:54:43 PM  

Fano: ThreadSinger: Fano: 13. Futurama

Canceled, if I recall.

It came back wrong. Mostly it just fools me into thinking it is as good as the original run, then we get the iPad episode


To clarify: canceled again. I agree, I find that their return to Comedy Central removed much of the censorship which drove them to make great episodes. I always think about that whenever I complain about how TV has the most hypocritical censoring rules; sometimes, it forces producers and writers to reallyget creative (Sneeds Seed and Feed, anyone?). A lot of the episodes after their return had blunt-but-terrible humor, IMHO.

A few gems though. That time travel one was great.
 
2013-12-11 12:54:53 PM  

Fano: ThreadSinger: Fano: 13. Futurama

Canceled, if I recall.

It came back wrong. Mostly it just fools me into thinking it is as good as the original run, then we get the iPad episode


Yep. While there were still a couple gold episodes (The late Philip J. Fry being the best), overall it was pretty meh.

And I firmly believe it was because of the move to Comedy Central. When they were on Fox, they had to toe the line on what what they could get past the radar. Their risque jokes were subtle, but paid off well. When they moved to CC, they had too much freedom. It went from a joke about the molecular structure of farts to just a really loud fart noise.
 
2013-12-11 12:55:50 PM  

ThreadSinger: Fano: ThreadSinger: Fano: 13. Futurama

Canceled, if I recall.

It came back wrong. Mostly it just fools me into thinking it is as good as the original run, then we get the iPad episode

To clarify: canceled again. I agree, I find that their return to Comedy Central removed much of the censorship which drove them to make great episodes. I always think about that whenever I complain about how TV has the most hypocritical censoring rules; sometimes, it forces producers and writers to reallyget creative (Sneeds Seed and Feed, anyone?). A lot of the episodes after their return had blunt-but-terrible humor, IMHO.

A few gems though. That time travel one was great.


Heh, you typed almost exactly what I did (even down to the best episode) and only 10 seconds apart.

Are you from a universe 10 feet lower?
 
2013-12-11 12:59:32 PM  
Night Court should have been on the list. Dan as a phantom type character was stupid.
 
2013-12-11 01:00:04 PM  

Son of Thunder: I say this as a big fan* of the show:
Sons of Anarchy.

Season three was maybe four episodes of story stretched into The Season That Didn't Need To Exist. I love Ron P., but Clay should have died long ago. I'm mostly liking the latest few episodes, but all this should have happened in season three or four. "Oh no! It's yet another complication dropped from the sky that will prolong Jax's attempts to go legit! And here comes another one! And another!"

*Still not over Opie.


Yep.  Big fan of the show too, and that's exactly how I feel as well.  SoA is a show that's great at its core, but keeps writing itself into a corner every few episodes, only to use Jax as this genius strategist who gets the club out of the latest jam, but everyone' still broke and constantly in trouble and doing stupid things.  Soap opera on bikes - Breaking Bad, it is not and never will be.
 
2013-12-11 01:08:02 PM  
www.nndb.com

What's going on in this thread?
 
2013-12-11 01:12:29 PM  
Californication is still decent.  Really can't see how they'll end it without killing Hank off in some drug and sex fueled blaze of glory.

/The final season of That 70s Show had a few good episodes.  The one with the stolen clown head is probably one of the funniest episodes of the show's entire run.
 
2013-12-11 01:34:12 PM  

jmudreamscape: Only really watched The Office and Weeds from that list.  The Office's 8th season was a major letdown, but its final season was tremendous and its finale was the kind of finale other shows dream of pulling off.  Weeds also finished satisfactory, though it was at its best when Nancy was just a fun pot dealer instead of running from the Mexican cartel.

But no True Blood?  How I Met Your Mother?  My Name Is Earl?  Oz?  Dawson's Creek

/perhaps one of those shouldn't have been included.


Add Scrubs and Gilmore Girls too.  Plus all the interchangeable procedural crime dramas - the 9 versions of Law & Order, etc.
 
2013-12-11 01:34:50 PM  

macadamnut: [blogs.westword.com image 550x431]


Only the finale of Seinfeld was bad. The show was brilliant right up to that point.
 
2013-12-11 01:53:21 PM  
"The Beverly Hillbillies" ran about three seasons too long. "Petticoat Junction" should have ended after Bea Benederet's death. "Bewitched" should have ended when Dick York had to leave due to health issues. "Get Smart" should have ended before the move to CBS. "Under the Dome" should have been a 13-episode miniseries. "Hostages" should have been a 2-hour TV movie.
 
2013-12-11 02:00:56 PM  

MayoSlather: macadamnut: [blogs.westword.com image 550x431]

Only the finale of Seinfeld was bad. The show was brilliant right up to that point.


It was bad but at the same time was about the only way they could have ended a "show about nothing".
 
2013-12-11 02:12:07 PM  

MayoSlather: macadamnut: [blogs.westword.com image 550x431]

Only the finale of Seinfeld was bad. The show was brilliant right up to that point.


The only thing that really bugged me about the Seinfeld finale was that every time a guest star would show up (Teri Hatcher for example), they felt the need to show a clip from that star's original episode. On top of that in a lot of the cases, like Teri Hatcher, the star also gave a recap of what happened in their original episode. It bugged me because before the finale there was already an hour long clip show/retrospective, so why are they showing more clips from old episodes? Why not use that time for more new jokes. It was like they were writing it for the millions of people who they expected to watch who had never seen the show before, not the millions of regular fans who didn't need a reminder who the Sidra or Babu or the Bubble boy or the Soup Nazi are.
 
2013-12-11 02:12:26 PM  

Cletus C.: browntimmy: Cletus C.: Entourage? I could have handled at least a couple more seasons of that.

But go ahead and hate on The Simpsons. It proves just how superior you are.

Are you in denial? Even though it's still on it fell off the cultural radar like a decade ago. Hell, I still think of it as a '90s show.

Uhm, you may want to sit down for this. Since you left, Lionel Hutz, Troy McClure and Fat Tony all died in one horrific shooting.


Hartman only voiced Tony once. Wiki says that Joe Mantegna did it all the other times.
 
2013-12-11 02:21:25 PM  

scottydoesntknow: ThreadSinger: Fano: ThreadSinger: Fano: 13. Futurama

Canceled, if I recall.

It came back wrong. Mostly it just fools me into thinking it is as good as the original run, then we get the iPad episode

To clarify: canceled again. I agree, I find that their return to Comedy Central removed much of the censorship which drove them to make great episodes. I always think about that whenever I complain about how TV has the most hypocritical censoring rules; sometimes, it forces producers and writers to reallyget creative (Sneeds Seed and Feed, anyone?). A lot of the episodes after their return had blunt-but-terrible humor, IMHO.

A few gems though. That time travel one was great.

Heh, you typed almost exactly what I did (even down to the best episode) and only 10 seconds apart.

Are you from a universe 10 feet lower?


Hehe!

I don't think so... a universe 10 seconds in advance, perha--OMGLOOKOUTTHEWIND----
+CARRIER LOST+.
 
2013-12-11 02:21:42 PM  
Andy Griffith show.

Seasons 6-8.

I'm not sure if it is because they are in color, or the addition of the hipster Howard, but they are not good.
 
2013-12-11 02:22:02 PM  

Red Shirt Blues: No M*A*S*H?


That sucked the moment they put the laugh track on it.
 
2013-12-11 02:25:01 PM  

mechgreg: The only thing that really bugged me about the Seinfeld finale was that every time a guest star would show up (Teri Hatcher for example), they felt the need to show a clip from that star's original episode.


Well that and that they were on trial for being assholes which would make sense except they never really got away with being assholes in the series. They always got screwed over for being dicks. Then there's the goofy shiat that the prosecution somehow found the Soup Nazi and the guy who sold Elaine too many sponges and just the whole thing seemed like a fark you to the audience.
 
2013-12-11 02:33:44 PM  

Whatthefark: Scrubs should be on the list. The final season was dreck.


Med school doesn't count. If that's not what you meant...put em up
 
2013-12-11 02:35:17 PM  
The Walking Dead should be on that list.
 
2013-12-11 02:39:04 PM  

spottymax: [www.nndb.com image 251x230]

What's going on in this thread?


Man, what a crap list. I don't think Ted McGinley was on any of those shows.

/deserves to make a guest appearance during the final season of any TV show, just on principle.
 
2013-12-11 02:42:09 PM  

FrancoFile: jmudreamscape: Only really watched The Office and Weeds from that list.  The Office's 8th season was a major letdown, but its final season was tremendous and its finale was the kind of finale other shows dream of pulling off.  Weeds also finished satisfactory, though it was at its best when Nancy was just a fun pot dealer instead of running from the Mexican cartel.

But no True Blood?  How I Met Your Mother?  My Name Is Earl?  Oz?  Dawson's Creek

/perhaps one of those shouldn't have been included.

Add Scrubs and Gilmore Girls too.  Plus all the interchangeable procedural crime dramas - the 9 versions of Law & Order, etc.


I try very hard to forget about the last couple of seasons of Scrubs.  They actually gave the show a great finale...and screwed that up by continuing the show.
 
2013-12-11 02:46:40 PM  

Mugato: mechgreg: The only thing that really bugged me about the Seinfeld finale was that every time a guest star would show up (Teri Hatcher for example), they felt the need to show a clip from that star's original episode.

Well that and that they were on trial for being assholes which would make sense except they never really got away with being assholes in the series. They always got screwed over for being dicks. Then there's the goofy shiat that the prosecution somehow found the Soup Nazi and the guy who sold Elaine too many sponges and just the whole thing seemed like a fark you to the audience.


Thank you for putting your finger on what didn't quite ring true about the finale- though they ruined people's lives they usually didn't get away scot free, so it really wasn't a good humiliation conga. It was just a curtain call for all the beloved secondary and tertiary characters.
 
2013-12-11 02:48:59 PM  

jmudreamscape: I try very hard to forget about the last couple of seasons of Scrubs.  They actually gave the show a great finale...and screwed that up by continuing the show.


More than any show I can remember it really was a money thing. I remember reading at the time that the syndication deal that the show had meant that any new episode they produced would pretty much instantly make an extra million dollars from the syndication rights. Although it is kind of funny because since the show ended I don't recall seeing it in syndication anywhere. Especially not those final season med school episodes.
 
2013-12-11 03:02:42 PM  
Stargate SG1 is one that went on too long. They should have ended with the Gao'uld. Even with them bringing in actors in liked, the whole Oni plot line was just bad.
 
2013-12-11 03:06:20 PM  

Mugato: A slideshow and frames. Nice.

Supernatural should have packed it in after the Apocalypse.


This. Season 9 is just unbearable. I don't know why I keep watching it.
 
Ant
2013-12-11 03:14:37 PM  

Confabulat: Dexter and True Blood come to mind.


Dexter was so bad at the end that now I don't even want to read the books or rewatch any earlier episodes.
 
2013-12-11 03:18:30 PM  

Ant: Dexter was so bad at the end that now I don't even want to read the books or rewatch any earlier episodes.


Don't worry, the books suck.  And Dexter doesn't hold up well to rewatches, especially the 1st and 3rd seasons (I stopped about halfway through season 5).  I think the sheen of originality wears off somehow.
 
2013-12-11 03:27:47 PM  

MayoSlather: DammitIForgotMyLogin: No BSG?

BLASPHEMER!!!


I loved BSG, but season 3 did NOT need to exist.
 
2013-12-11 03:34:45 PM  

Stile4aly: I think the flaw of the show was the promise from episode 1 that the Cylons had a plan.


Seasons 1 and 2 were so tight, I assumed the entire story arc was mapped out in advance.  Then Season 3 was almost entirely filler and Season 4 was a wreck.  Start listening to Moore's commentaries and find out the show was just being hotbooked a few months in advance of filming, and they were picking up plot points and then dropping them a few episodes later because they had nowhere to go with them.  Caprica 6's pregnancy being one of the most odious examples.  What a disappointment, can you imagine if the entire series had the same high quality as the first season?
 
2013-12-11 03:34:59 PM  

The Banana Thug: Son of Thunder: I say this as a big fan* of the show:
Sons of Anarchy.

Season three was maybe four episodes of story stretched into The Season That Didn't Need To Exist. I love Ron P., but Clay should have died long ago. I'm mostly liking the latest few episodes, but all this should have happened in season three or four. "Oh no! It's yet another complication dropped from the sky that will prolong Jax's attempts to go legit! And here comes another one! And another!"

*Still not over Opie.

Yep.  Big fan of the show too, and that's exactly how I feel as well.  SoA is a show that's great at its core, but keeps writing itself into a corner every few episodes, only to use Jax as this genius strategist who gets the club out of the latest jam, but everyone' still broke and constantly in trouble and doing stupid things.  Soap opera on bikes - Breaking Bad, it is not and never will be.


I stopped watching after they killed Opie. Same farking plot every season just got to be to repetitive.
 
2013-12-11 03:37:24 PM  
Just about every fictional program I've seen on TV really needs to wrap up the story arc and severance the team after three years.  Season Four is generally Not Good and it just does not get better.  I say that as someone still watching Big Bang Theory.   Get Raj laid and wrap it up, people.
 
2013-12-11 03:38:58 PM  
Throw in this one: Sons of Anarchy should've ended back at season 4.

/SOA season 5 finale was bad enough, but season 6's was just pissing on its viewers.
 
2013-12-11 03:41:47 PM  
Babylon 5, Season 5 was an affront to everything decent in the world.

If  I have the story right, JMS originally planned for 5 seasons, then before filming S4 was told they were done so they shot their entire load to finish the story, and then TBS was all like, "Surprise, season 5 after all!"
 
2013-12-11 03:43:37 PM  

Contents Under Pressure: Just about every fictional program I've seen on TV really needs to wrap up the story arc and severance the team after three years.  Season Four is generally Not Good and it just does not get better.  I say that as someone still watching Big Bang Theory.   Get Raj laid and wrap it up, people.


My biggest complaint is that it gets really obvious when the point of the show becomes keeping the show going instead of telling a story.  The US version of The Office is a great example; they tied up the Jim and Pam story, but because they couldn't end the series, they recycled the story arc with Andy and the new receptionist.

Show should have ended with the wedding episode, IMO.
 
2013-12-11 03:52:08 PM  

r1niceboy: Red Shirt Blues: No M*A*S*H?

That sucked the moment they put the laugh track on it.


I think the series started with a laugh track and had one right up until it became a full-on dramedy (somewhere around Winchester's arrival.) So maybe you're just sayin' that the whole series sucked?

That's crazy talk.
 
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