A blog post that I’d written in May of this year dealt with my frustrations over television writing. Many of the derivative television shows I had seen stalled the plot and created shrouds of mystery and questions as a means to capture the viewer’s attention.
I’m a television watcher. I’m one of the few people in Manhattan I know who has cable. People have their Netflix and their Torrents, and their Hulu, but I have Time Warner,
and I love it. I’ve reached a point where I realize how little television I watch that I take seriously anymore. I’ve fazed out the need to give shows a chance and expect satisfaction. It becomes background noise, or literally just watching to see how *not* to edit sequences together, or how write scripts. Some of these I watch because they’re just Footlockers caught in a hurricane, and watching the writers struggle to untie the knots and wade through the debris is so satisfying.
Originally I had intended to go through all of the shows that I’m currently watching, but who honestly cares about that? I think all I really want to say about this is that I find that the best shows (not sitcoms, but shows like Breaking Bad, Walking Dead, Justified, Boardwalk Empire) all seem to work when there is an end-goal. If you introduce an antagonist at the beginning of a season, most of the time they are vanquished by the season’s end. On the show 24 that day was over. On Lost, There’s a hatch, and then there’s a computer here, and it has magnets and was started by the Dharma Initiative, and The Others and the Frozen Donkey Wheel and Reincarnation and Time Travel and The Island — I’m sorry. What? Closure.
So I will continue to watch DEA Hank Schrader turn full monster with a bunch of morons and other assorted writing tropes under a dome, which has turned full sci-fi spooky Steven King’gery on its logic. Because it (allegedly) started out like King’s book, veered sharply away from the source material, and then went on its way with all other kinds of crazy. No writers are going to want to touch it, so I’m eager to see how they dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge!
Then I will be glued to the screen as a group of people do things in a post-technological world while factions fight in civil wars. No idea where this is all going, but so many people jumped ship from last season that the show rejiggered its focus and rebooted the hell out of itself. That alone is fun to see.
Or the building of the transcontinental railroad. Because you know eventually that shit will get done.