What Up Wit Dat? A List of Complaints, Whines and Bitches about TV Over the Past Month or So.

Now that the elections are over (except in Alaska and Minnesota, apparently) all the voters have been suppressed, all the opinions have been biased, all the mud has been slung, the clothing purchased, the pit-bulls be-lipsticked, the terrorists palled-around with, the geritol consumed, and the right guy elected for a change (whew!) I thought it would be appropriate to reflect on some of the upheavals in TV over the past month or so.

Yes, the TV Maven has come out of hibernation, and is sufficiently annoyed to refer to himself in the third person.

Complaint #1: Cancellations: C’mon people! King of the Hill, Mad TV, My Own Worst Enemy are gone, but fracking KNIGHT RIDER stays on? WTF? NBC has apparently decided that the viewership of two or three decent sit-coms and Sunday Night Football are enough to maintain ratings throughout the year. Memo to NBC morons: The really good dramas come back in January. What are you going to put up against Lost and 24? Against that kind of competition, Sara Connor has about as much hope as a T-1000 in vat of molten metal. (see what I did there?) Other networks are guilty of this gratuitous cancelling of series as well (right, FOX?) but they seem to forget that it’s a good idea to have REPLACEMENTS for these shows before sending them to the great beyond. To wit: A decent, if a bit aged King of the Hill beats the snot out of “Who wants to Marry my Dwarf, Transvestite, Lesbian, Bulimic, Coke-Addicted, Attention-Whore Father?”

Whither Thou goest, propane salesman?

Mad TV may be failing to “bring the funny”, but its worth keeping around for a number of reasons:

1. It’s still better than SNL.
2. It has promoted some exceptional, if not mainstream talent (most of which is currently on Family Guy)
3. It, like SNL, is one incredibly talented writer/actor/impressionist away from a revival. (If SNL stayed on through the years that Kevin Neelon was their star power, surely MadTV can be given a pass)

Potentially, quite funny....

Complaint #2: Series “re-inventing” themselves. Once-popular shows forget why they are popular, blindly assume that viewers will stay loyal to a series of title credits and frack up the whole series, or make some other big, unnecessary change in casting (right, Dr. House?) or formula.
"Too many notes, Herr Mozart..."

The latest version of this is going to be Knight Rider. Its six loyal fans will be treated to less of the “terrorist-of-the-week” thing (must be running out of fake, vaguely-Middle-Eastern-Sounding country names, huh.) and more of a Man and his car roaming about helping the average Joe. Sort of a “Touched by a Concept-Car” thing. It’s stupid, pointless and annoying. Like my grandmother used to say: “You can’t polish a turd.” (We’ve had to have her committed, as she would often repeat this phrase loudly, and in church….”)

Primary perpetrators:

Heroes (mostly last year, but some this year)
House (I like the new guys, but I liked the old guys, too, and the show is getting too crowded)
Pushing Daisies (this show is too new to be resorting to “bizzarro-world” type episodes)

Complaint #3: Musical Networks. Not to be confused with Network Musicals (yay, Cop Rock) The adjustments of these series to new networks adds just one more level of confusion to an already bizarre TV Lineup.

"Nana TV Maven, before Incarceration"
A few examples:
Scrubs to ABC from NBC
King of the Hill (possibly) from FOX to ABC
(gee, I’m sensing a pattern here…)
Law and Order CSI from NBC to USA
Friday Night Lights from NBC to Direct – farking – TV for Christ’s sake!

My main problem with this is simple: if your network is so lame that it has to resort to lapping up cast-offs from…well, apparently, NBC… why not pick up the GOOD shows with some loyal fan base. Suggestions: The Riches (It’ll keep Izzard away from that godawful abortion of a re-make of Rocky Horror) 2400, The Dead Zone, Jericho, My Own Worst Enemy (hey, it was uneven, but it never really got a chance…) MadTV…
Compailnt #4: Talent Oversaturation

If I see one more new cartoon by Seth McFarlane, reality show by Simon Fuller, or Convoluted, nonsensical, yet somehow addictive drama by JJ Abrams, I'm going to...well, probably watch them, but it's still kind of irritating. Look, I like Family Guy as much as the next evil, homicidal, vaguely homosexual baby, but THREE prime-time shows? Quality will necessarily suffer...mark my words...

Complaint #5: Stunt Casting

Brittany, Lindsey, Katie, Jennifer...if I want to see you, I'll rent one of your overrated movies, watch one of your hyper-whorish videos, or pick up a tabloid. Eli Stone, if you have to resort to this crap to maintain a series about the cosmic anomoly of an HONEST LAWYER, its time to get out of the game...the rest of you...just fucking stop it. (30 Rock gets a pass here since the celebs are playing some version of themselves)

"Stewie Griffin is: Shaft"
Complaint #5: Reality TV… this deserves a whole separate article…so, until then, Buh-bye.

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