Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Please avoid American Idol & TV for the next two weeks

If you are even a casual television watcher, do yourself a favor over the next two or so weeks and keep your set turned off. The TV season, for the most part, has wrapped up and the next two weeks are either a string or repeats we've already seen, the season finales of series which nobody actually gives a shit about or the premiere of some rather horrid summer series which are mainly unscripted fare which is best left in the trash from which it came.

Think about the possibilities. Tonight marks the first part of the American Idol season finale on FOX. There are obviously two "singers" left on this overhyped karoake contest and there's probably a mere dozen or two die-hard fans of this groan-worthy snooze-fest that could enthusiastically rattle off the names of these perpetual nobodies. Sure, the Idol franchise has produced a few music stars during its 8 year run -- Kelly Clarkson, Daughtry and Carrie Underwood being the only contestants from the series to actually reach any level of true success -- but the series has, in my opinion, a habit of taking people who probably aren't ready for the limelight -- either in their overall lack of stage presence, being unprepared for the rigors of fame and criticism from the press or their lack of songwriting ability. In short, it's a show that tries to turn nothing in to something.

Then FOX follows up the first part of the Idol performance show tonight with the season finale of the second season of Glee. From people who watch the show, they say it's still decent but it appears that the writing staff felt they were a one-and-done and had little in the way of story to write anything even remotely conherent and compelling for a second season. Maybe it's time that some series just admitted that they'd be best at following the limited run model of British TV series and pull the plug after twenty or thirty episodes. Tell a great story, pack each episode with compelling plot elements and wrap up a story in a defined period of time. Glee, though, will probably drag on for another year or two before it's put out if its misery.

The rest of the next two weeks, though is shit. Wednesday has an overly bloated and sensationalized American Idol finale in which viewers will wait through 53 minutes of an hour with Ryan Seacrest stalling, shilling for Cocal-Cola and Ford only to find out that their personal favorite karoake star didn't win a record contract that will force the winner to churn out a really shitty CD and return to obscurity by October.

Even The Voice, airing at 9 PM C/T on NBC tonight and next Tuesday until moving to 8 PM C/T on June 7th, is beginning to slip a bit. It's still the most innovative and original singing contest on TV and the mentors are actually currently relevant personalities but without Tim Mahoney, the show has lost its appeal to me.

Oh well, at least I have a couple more seasons of Dexter to watch and that should take up a month or two of those pre-bedtime hours during the summer months. I'd recommend you do the same.

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