03/16/2017 St. Elmo's Fire 5 Comments
On Writing, TV Shows Adventure Time, Big Bang Theory, meditations on writing
01/28/2014 Farla 7 Comments
I got into Adventure Time about a year ago. It was billed as a spiritual predecessor to Steven Universe, so I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. The quality is pretty haphazard – individual episodes can be very good, but for most of its run it seems to throw consistent storytelling to the wind. There’s basically no telling what will happen in a given episode, or how much we’re supposed to care; maybe a given plot point be revisited and turn out to be vitally important a few episodes later, maybe a few seasons later, maybe never. It currently has a number of interesting ongoing mysteries and plotlines, but it jumps between them seemingly at random, which can be frustrating. It overall feels like a show that’s constantly trying and failing to figure out what it wants to be.
There’s one plot point that I found particularly baffling, however, and I think it ties into a recurring problem in shows like these that toe the line between episodic and plotty: they can’t decide whether they want to play a potentially serious topic for drama or comedy.
(Spoilers for episode 6×22, for those of you who care.)
TV Shows Big Bang Theory, Single post review, Two and a Half Men
So in the interests of fairness(?), Two and a Half Men is also a very bad sitcom. I have only seen the end of an episode, where Longsuffering Hot Chick was planning to get breast reduction surgery because of the minor issue of being in pain and Guy I Hope She One Day Kills managed to convince her not to at the last second, to his joy. When trying to find the clip for you, I instead found something from the middle of an episode featuring the two of them.
You’ll notice it’s in a playlist that’s for the best scenes from the show. But really, even if this was universally reviled by the fans, nothing short of every other episode just being a woman reading from selected works on feminism could help. (I guess it could be, because the fact I’ve now watched four whole minutes of this show is bad enough and I’m not going to look at anything else.)
So: Two and a Half Men is worse than Big Bang Theory. This doesn’t change that Big Bang Theory is terrible. But I guess if you’re ever at someone else’s house, and they say they want to watch TV and let you pick which of the two it’ll be, and for some reason you can’t sprint through a window to escape, and you don’t hate them for some reason so punching them out isn’t an option, then you’ll know that Two and a Half Men is the worse one to pick.