Disappointments of the 2013-2014 TV Season

There were some major and minor disappointments for me this past season. One thing that disappointed me last year was that a few of the shows I was most excited about were held until the spring. At last year’s upfronts 3 of the new shows I most wanted to watch were The 100, Believe and Surviving Jack, which were all held until spring. Of these, both Surviving Jack and Believe were cancelled and The 100 narrowly got renewed. Midseason shows very rarely get renewed as people are not looking for new shows to watch at this time and people tend to watch less tv as the weather is getting warmer out. Shows that get a fall launch tend to do better. Surviving Jack didn’t premiere until April and FOX never really gave it a fair chance. Even though it had twice the overall viewers and about the same number of viewers in the 18-49 demo as low-rated New Girl and Mindy Project, two shows lucky to get renewals, Surviving Jack was still cancelled. It’s a mighty shame as the show was laugh-outloud funny and Christopher Meloni, formerly of Law & Order: SVU, who played the title character on this show, turned out to be an extraordinary comedic actor. If FOX had nurtured the show a bit and given it a fall relaunch, I’m sure it could have improved substantially in the ratings and built on to its audience over time.

By far the biggest disappointment of the season was the recent cancellation of Revolution. It was my favourite network show. Ratings were not great and I blame that on both its 8pm timeslot (too early) and its uneven writing. Parts of the show were written so well while other plot points derailed it. What worked for the show was its complex characters, including Charlie, Monroe, Miles, Neville and Rachel, with new characters Connor and Gene, and the complicated relationships between them all. The dystopic setting was great and full of potential and the Patriot storyline was good. Where the show suffered was the Aaron storyline with the annoying nanites.  As soon as Aaron started seeing apparitions and the nanites started to play god, a lot of viewers tuned out. Both live and DVR numbers dropped significantly. It’s a real shame because the other storylines were great. Unfortunately, we will never get to see how the story plays out as the show ends on a cliffhanger and no ends are really tied up. Revolution is now on the long list of shows I really liked that got cancelled far too quickly.

Another disappointment for me was the cancellation of Arctic Air. This was another show that suffered from uneven writing. I really wish the writers had focussed more on the various characters than the action sequences. I loved the setting for the show and the central characters worked well but I felt that maybe the writers were trying to make the show appeal to too many types of people. Yes, it did have the disadvantage of being a Canadian series, so general viewership was important, but I think the show would have worked much better serialized instead of the bad-situation-of-the-week type of scenario with episodes able to function as stand-alone ones. Anyways, Arctic Air was an okay show that could have been good had it gone in a different direction with the writing.

Overall, the past tv season wasn’t too disappointing. It could have been much much worse. Only one of my top 15 shows–Revolution–was cancelled. Stay tuned for next week when I share what my greatest contentments of the past tv season were.

About Ally Oop

I live in Saskatchewan, the best place on earth and am the mother of three beautiful little girls. I have always loved to write. TV is a hobby of mine, and its not just the watching part that is a hobby; it's also the processes involved in the television industry, particularly both the Canadian and American television industries. I hold a degree in Canadian Studies, with a focus on Rural Canada and geography, with a few classes here and there in creative writing and theatre studies. If I didn't hate city-living so much (I tried my hand at living in Winnipeg for a few years) I would have tried to go to Vancouver or Toronto to try to become a television writer but just the idea of living in an apartment building (again) makes me shudder. I prefer my wide open spaces in the country.
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