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Author Topic: The Rise, Decline and fan-pandering of TV lately  (Read 551 times)

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Offline TigatagaTopic starter

The Rise, Decline and fan-pandering of TV lately
« on: March 05, 2014, 11:49:11 AM »

TV Lately...

Is it just me, or is there something about TV lately going with a rise, decline and fan-pandering in programmes. Things like Glee, Teen Wolf and Big Bang Theory, just for ones that I watch have this continual loop that I see them going through.

They start with varying levels of praise, but as they gain a fandom, they slowly start leaning towards them rather than trying to tell their own stories. There’s a leaning towards giving fans what they want. Glee, more recent and popular songs along with simpler, one episode plot lines. Teen Wolf, making the plots simple whodunits which are sadly not given enough screen time as they should. BBT, becoming the reverse of what it initially was, making more fun of the smart people rather than making the smart jokes.

And yet, watching Glee recently, especially the last two episodes, they’ve not exactly gone back to their roots, but they’ve started taking a step in the right direction by having plots last longer than a single episode and choosing more fitting song choices for their stories rather than doing a song just because they can… for half for their hour long slots. The New York parts of their episodes are indeed about the development of characters and beginning to show more than simply fan-pandering, but the other half remains singular slapped on plots and oh look, we did that just because we can. It’s sad to think that half of the regular cast is going to be cut after the next few episodes as they’ve barely been touched on for half the season which is disappointing, people might not have liked the newer characters as much as the old, but removing a character from the series doesn’t give you chance to show off more of the remaining set, it takes away the opportunity to make the entire cast likeable and give them interesting storylines.

In fact, with Teen Wolf, I believe that’s what this whole killing off a main character shocker is for. Rumours and spoilers going around the internet are saying it’s Isaac Lahey, whom is an adorable ball of sunshine with a backstory that just makes you want to hug him, but in the last few episodes, he’s been nothing but a replacement love interest, given nothing to do and been placed in a coma, removing his chances of trying to have a last hurrah. Killing him off at this point is more likely to upset fans in an angry way than sad, because he has been under utilised and killing him just takes away that opportunity to give him one. You DO NOT remove characters for shock value or because they do not currently run a storyline, you remove a character if there are conflicts behind the scenes, their contract runs out, the actual actor passes away.

Admittedly, the reasons behind it are unknown to the public, and it might not be him, but the fact of the matter is, if it turns out to be him, there needs to be his last hour, his epic moment of glory with which he truly shines.

The funny thing is, this came from me watching the most recent episode of Glee, which, despite still not being great, has been far better than the first portion of the season thus far. And this is more an open letter about the rise, decline and fan-pandering in TV of late, and really, it needs to stop. Writers, I beg of you, DO NOT write something simply because the fans want it.

Prime example, and I’m putting my flame shield up in case this post does start spreading around, as I do actually like this ‘ship’…


DO NOT make this canon. Seriously.

Fans practically attack Tyler Posey for his comments on how the couple shouldn’t be the reason for watching the show, the way he said it was somewhat wrongly worded, I will not defend him of that. But what he said is right in a way. The fans have taken this idea and run with it to the far corners of the earth, which in a way is beautiful, as it shows how dedicated and creative they are. But at the same time, he has a point. It should not be the reason you watch a show as it is the entirety of something that should be taken in rather than what you perceive outside of canon.

The pairing, much like Tyler Hoechlin has said before, is something akin to the reverse of Scott and Stiles. They are brothers in the caring sense, playfully ribbing each other but also looking out for one another. Derek and Stiles on the other hand are brothers in the sense of protection. They don’t have many feelings for one another, in fact, even classing them as friends is a stretch, but they can relate to one another in that they have suffered losses and feel responsible as such in their own right, and look out for each other when they are hurt (well… Stiles does for Derek, but that’s another page of text).

The point is, yes, you can look at them and say that there are romantic feelings for each other. You know who else you can do that for? Kirk and Spock. Dean and Castiel. Buffy and Faith. Various rainbow colours of the fucking Power Rangers for god’s sake!

This isn’t an attack on people who ship something or complain about a TV show, it is your opinion which you are obligated to have. What is not okay is when you in turn attack other, notably the writers and actors of certain shows because you don’t agree with them. In turn. Writers, your fans are your fans because they enjoy what you write, you should not just give them what they want because they want it. Indulging them every now and then with sly nods and implications are fine, but start writing things that a portion of fans want is alienating to the rest.

In summation;

  • Fans, love the show for the show, not just the ships and the pairings.
  • Writers, make it YOUR show, your fans will thank you more for it.
  • Also, so not write shocking plots and removing characters simply because you can or cannot write for them any more. Removing characters just takes away the chance to further explore them and making them better as a result.
  • If you must remove characters, make it their greatest achievement and finest hour (I’m looking at you Joss Whedon)

Offline RedPhoenix

Re: The Rise, Decline and fan-pandering of TV lately
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2014, 02:24:23 PM »
Hmmm. You picked two shows that I hate and one that I've never watched as your examples so I was already disposed to agree with anything bad you said about them. But I think sometimes people forget that TV shows are there to make money off advertisers and the way you get a lot of people watching is to do what your fans want. I do appreciate your rant though. =)

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: The Rise, Decline and fan-pandering of TV lately
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2014, 03:20:33 PM »

Seen exactly ONE episode of Teen Wolf, nothing of Glee (ever!), and maybe HALF an episode of the Big Bang Theory.

I can say this.. yes, there is a tendency in Television to pander to the audience you have. Shows are expensive things, in time and money, and if a producer can keep what he has in an audience..they tend to do that.