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In a long-running TV series, the audience "grows up' with the characters and has an ever- increasing maturity level and knowledge of each character's traits. Is this something the writer needs to keep in mind? - Question/Answer Now Playing


In a long-running TV series, the audience "grows up' with the characters and has an ever- increasing maturity level and knowledge of each character's traits. Is this something the writer needs to keep in mind?

Aug 22, 2011

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In a long-running TV series, the audience "grows up' with the characters and has an ever- increasing maturity level and knowledge of each character's traits. Is this something the writer needs to keep in mind? - Question/Answer Q & A Discussion


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oysteinbrager: Harry Potter
at Mar 15, 2017 - 1:37 PM
The idea of an audience that actually matures during the production of a series did happen in a very literal way with the first readers of the Harry Potter books, who followed the book series as it was being written. That generation grew up along side the characters, and the books seemed to mature with the readership, aiming always to meet a readership the same age as the main characters.
MiaKim wrote
at Aug 24, 2011 - 12:21 PM
Recently saw 2010 Law and Order and thought it was just great!! And Law and Order has been running for years and years.
MiaKim wrote
at Aug 22, 2011 - 10:39 PM
I agree Bass. I had the pleasure of watching the entire SOPRANOS in one long session. The last two seasons were definitely weak.UGLY BETTY endured four seasons and the last season was the weakest. Jerry Seinfeld may be a good example of strong last season although not necessarily the last episode.
Bass wrote
at Aug 22, 2011 - 8:25 AM
I think it's more common, in shows that last more than 3 seasons, that the last season is weaker than those that preceded it. I felt that THE SOPRANOS last two seasons ("six part 1", and "six part 2") were considerably weaker and less mature than the previous seasons, as they spent those two years copying the famous death scenes of THE GODFATHER and treating the cast like the show was a whack-a-mole game. There is the phrase, "jumping the shark", where the show becomes a shadow of its former self, as it runs out of ideas and becomes somewhat indulgent and self-referential. I think this is probably more common than shows that end strong.

The later seasons of BUFFY: THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, THE X-FILES, FUTURAMA, THE SIMPSONS, FRIENDS are all less than their earlier versions.

And there are shows that get cancelled and so either end rushed or not at all.

Some shows maintain consistency: THE WIRE certainly never drops in quality, but does it get more mature/better? I'm not sure.

I'm trying to think of a TV show where the last season was really its best season, and the only one I can think of is THE SHIELD.

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