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2007 TV Year In Review: The Worst

Andrew Payne Andrew Payne
December 29th, 2007 12:00pm EST
CavemenCompounded by the writers strike, TV suffered this year. Shows that should have been pulled weren't, and not one new series became a breakout hit.

The Worst:

"Sportscenter" - What was once one of the funniest and hippest half-hours on television has now become the most exhausting hour (and sometimes 90-minutes) you'll spend in front of the tube. Somewhere along the line, somebody at ESPN got the idea that viewers cared more about watching the anchors and analysts than they did about seeing highlights and scores.

This has led to the self-aggrandizing spectacle currently being repeated all morning, every morning. Sports fans are subject to endless bad jokes from anchors who aren't Keith Olbermann or Craig Kilborn and so-called experts who come on and spout the same hackneyed pieces of analyst-speak, time after time. We're afraid this is a ship that has veered too far off course to come back into port and may never regain its heading.

Big Bang TheoryEvery Single New Series on the Four Major Networks - Was this season a joke? Did the networks simply see the writer's strike as an inevitability and not even attempt to develop watchable shows? When the best new series are a one-joke sitcom from the most vanilla producer in the world (Chuck Lorre's "Big Bang Theory") and a hackneyed sitcom that may have seemed fresh in the early 70s ("Back To You") you know you've come across the feeblest crop of shows in recent memory.

Last year NBC alone hit some major grand slams ("Heroes", "30 Rock", "Friday Night Lights"), and now the four major networks can barely combine to get on base. The cruelest example of this was "Cavemen", a truly awful sitcom that could be called a one-joke show except that it never made one. And this was picked up by ABC in favor of "The Thick of It", a show created by Mitchell Hurwitz ("Arrested Development") directed by Christopher Guest and starring Michael McKean (both of "This is Spinal Tap" and "Best in Show.") Sound like much of a pedigree?

The fall 2007 season typifies the fall from grace experience by television this year, one that will hopefully be righted when the writers come back to work after having several long months with nothing to do but brainstorm.

Now that sounds like a great TV year in the making.

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Story by Andrew Payne
Starpulse contributing writer


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