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Televisionary New Year Resolutions for 2009

Happy New Year! It's been an exciting time in the Televisionary household this past year, between my marriage last June and some site-related successes, though I can't say that the television landscape, still recovering from the 100-day writers strike that began in November 2007, was filled with quite as much happiness and mirth.

Yes, the series that had their seasons shortened as a result of the strike have returned... but, sadly, many of them--including the heartbreaking Pushing Daisies, Dirty Sexy Money, and Eli Stone--have already gone the way of the dust heap by the time 2008 rolled to a close.

To that end, with 2009 upon us, I thought I'd come up with a few New Year's resolutions for myself that are--as opposed to most people's resolutions about losing weight, quitting smoking, etc.--solely television-focused.

So what exactly am I proposing? Let's discuss.

(1) Refrain from watching lousy, sub-par reality programming.

Yep, you read that correctly. That means no Momma's Boys, Homeland Security USA, True Beauty, or Superstars of Dance. With so much scripted television making a comeback (more on that in a bit), it's positively shameful that the broadcast networks are again making an investment in dreck like that rather than developing and airing quality scripted fare. Remember when reality programming was just a tiny segment of the schedule rather than the lion's share? Remind the networks that you are voting where your mouth (or wallet) is and that you're supporting scripted programming. (Though, naturally, there are the exceptions to the reality rule, such as Bravo's fantastic Top Chef.)

(2) Watch returning scripted series. Watch returning scripted series. Again: Watch returning scripted series.

The New Year brings us a plethora of brainy scripted programming, with several long-standing favorites slated to return in just the first few weeks of 2009. Hell, within a few weeks of one another Lost, Damages, Big Love, Flight of the Conchords, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, and Battlestar Galactica are all scheduled to kick off new seasons. Some of these (Damages, Big Love, and Conchords, for example) have been off the air for an extra long time, so be sure to do the cable nets a favor and show them some much-needed love by tuning in... and reminding the networks that these series do have an active and mindful fan base who have been eagerly awaiting their respective returns.

(3) Sample new scripted series.

Show the networks that people are hungry to try out new scripted series, even if every concept doesn't necessary click with viewers in the long-run. Not every series is meant for everyone but hopefully there's an audience out there somewhere for new series like The United States of Tara, Cupid, The Unusuals, Harper's Island, Better Off Ted, and Kings... if only to prove to the networks that long-term investments in developing new scripted fare is a wise move. Even better: if they continue to invest in time-tested piloting, rather than handing out full season orders to projects that aren't ready to yet take that move (and usually end up requiring more money in retooling/reshooting/recasting than they would have saved by just shooting a pilot up front).

(4) Watch more TV on DVD.

Over the years, I've amassed quite a collection on TV on DVD that most of the time sits patiently on my shelves waiting for a trip to the DVD player. Despite having so many new and returning series on the docket for 2009, I'm still planning on spending some time in the Televisionary past, taking a stroll down memory lane with the first few seasons of Gilmore Girls, rewatching Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Wonderfalls, or Battlestar Galactica in its entirety, taking a trip across the pond with Brit imports like Skins, Ashes to Ashes, Gavin & Stacey, Spooks, Torchwood, or Doctor Who.

Or I'll pick up a few full-season collections of series that I didn't get a chance to watch in full the first time around on television, like The Lakes or Peep Show. Maybe I'll even find a few new Televisionary obsessions along the way. And if you haven't quite managed to amass the enormous collection I have, there's always Netflix...

(5) Remind ABC to air the final three episodes of Pushing Daisies.

Pushing Daisies aired its tenth episode back in December before disappearing into the ether. There are still three episodes that were filmed that have yet to air but ABC has not slated airdates for any of those remaining installments. Take a few minutes to remind ABC in your own way that you want to see the resolution to the second season of Pushing Daisies and don't want to wait for the inevitable DVD sometime later this year to do so.

Sadly, Daisies is dead and won't be coming back to life with a touch from the Pie Maker, but it doesn't mean that the series' devoted viewers shouldn't get to see those completed episodes on the air, even if it means burning them off on a Friday night or similar. Like lonely tourist Charlotte Charles, we need the closure such an encounter from beyond might bring.

So, my question to you readers is this: what television-related New Year's resolutions are you making for 2009? Discuss.


Anonymous said…
Pretty well stay the course. I only watch scripted shows so my continued pass on reality tv is a lock.

1) Watch more imported shows. Just finished seasons 1 & 2 of Gavin & Stacey. Thanks for the heads up on that one! Loved it.

2) Seek out TV on DVD in BluRay where possible. Lost on BluRay is gorgeous! Just snagged Firefly on sale on BluRay for $30.

3) Follow up on shows that you and similar sites take the time to point out to us. Thanks!

4) Continue to champion Chuck to as many folks as I can!

That'll do for now.
Anonymous said…
I definitely agree about TV on DVD. I had never watched any episodes of The Wire (gasp!) until recently when I decided to rent the first series from Netflix. Within a few weeks I had finished watching the entire brilliant series!

I also missed out on the first season of Mad Men and am thrilled that I rented it and watched it before the second season began. It's now one of my favorite shows.
Anonymous said…
I will be heartbroken if they don't show the last three episodes of Pushing Daisies. It's horrible enough that the show has been canceled but can't they give us fans the satisfaction of seeing the completed episodes?
Unknown said…
You'd think they could at least air them at 1am or something. After all, true fans have a DVR.

My resolution is a bit different: to watch only top-notch shows. I seem to spend too much time watching mediocre programming. However, there do seem to be more good shows than usual in 2008-2009.
joy said…
Hey, get outta my head!

Your #2 is in conflict with #4.

It's superhard keeping up with the current shows...and then trying to watch what you've got on the shelves. Not that I'm not doing a marathon of the Buffy/Angel set that I bought for dirtcheap on Amazon, or anything.
Amy said…
I should join that resolution about watching the tv on DVD that's collecting dust...
Anonymous said…
My only real resolution is to try to keep up with the TiVo better. I thought getting a new larger TiVo would benefit me, but unfortunately so far it just means I can keep more episodes of shows I want to watch but haven't had time to catch up with yet.

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