We here at The Whiteboard have decided to do some TV Awards this summer. We will definitely pick some favorites at the end of the year too, but with most network TV show seasons taking place across two different years, we wanted to do something now that could include their past seasons in full. So these awards will take a look at some of our favorite and least favorite stuff in TV and anything that happened in the “Emmy Period” from June 1st 2011 to May 31st 2012 is eligible. In Part 3, we begin our look at shows’ full seasons with various awards.
Most Overrated Show
This goes to the show that just isn’t quite as good as everyone thinks.
Matthew’s Pick: Community – First of all, I’m not saying Community is bad. I generally enjoy the show. It’s just not anywhere near the best comedy on TV like its fervent fanbase would lead you to believe. It’s just too inconsistent. For every one of its big hyped up theme episodes it nails, another one is a total miss. It’s a good show, sometimes great, just not as good as it is made out to be.
Omarey’s Pick: Louie – Don’t get me wrong this show can be very funny. Just the mention of Ricky Gervais’ guest spot and I turn into an absolute mess. My issue with the show is the hype that critics and fans put on it. Best comedy on TV? No. Best show on TV? Absolutely not. The show is funny and definitely unique but to me if you are best you need to be very consistent. The best show on TV should not have any episodes that miss and Louie has had quite a few.
Most Underrated Show
This award goes to the show that seems to fly under the radar and doesn’t get the credit it deserves.
Matthew’s Pick: Southland – Why is Southland underrated? It’s at least in the top ten dramas on TV I’d say and no one watches it. I’m not sure if it is because of the network switch it went through after its first season. Or because it’s on TNT. Maybe people think it is a generic cop procedural (which it isn’t). It’s a gritty and at times humorous look at days in the lives of cops. It’s not really about the cases, but the characters which are very well-developed. It definitely deserves a bigger audience and more praise than it currently gets. And Season 4 was another great season for this underappreciated gem.
Omarey’s Pick: Southland – This show is so great. I initially thought it was just a standard procedural cop drama and in a way it is. But it is also a heart-filled, suspense-filled drama. The writing is great and the characters are all so genuine. The show is written and acted in a way that you have to care about the characters and their lives. It also does a great job of weaving and telling stories week in and week out that are intriguing. Do yourself a favor and watch this show.
Most Surprisingly Good Show
This is for the show that we expected to hate, but ended up liking.
Matthew’s Pick: Revenge – I thought the ads for Revenge looked terrible. I mean I am really open to night time soaps and still thought this looked pretty awful. After hearing it was good and then checking it out for myself, I was delighted to find out that it was one of the best new shows of the year. Is it cheesy sometimes? Definitely. It is still a lot of soapy fun though. I’m very glad I was wrong about this one, as it is one of the most addictive shows on TV for me. If you wrote if off like I did and are looking for a good soap, definitely give this one a try.
Omarey’s Pick: Suits – I love Suits. This is not what I was saying two summers ago as I was watching promos for it. I openly mocked the show for the premise and figured it would be garbage that needed to be taken out. Everything changed when I happened to be sitting down to watch the pilot of this show. I was hooked immediately. I couldn’t believe how much I liked all of the characters. The premise was actually handled well and was fun to watch. The stories that were told had me hooked I needed to know what was going to happen next. I am so glad I gave this show a chance and didn’t just judge this thrilling book by its cover.
Show that was Hardest to Watch
This category is for the show that felt the most like work to watch each week.
Matthew’s Pick: The Killing – There is no getting around it, The Killing can be a complete slog to watch sometimes. Particularly in the middle of this season which is filled with The Killing‘s bread and butter, the red herring. You just know they are going to be spinning their wheels so they can push off telling us who killed Rosie until the end of the season by giving us a bunch of dead ends. And this is after they pushed back telling us for a whole season with that absurd Season 1 finale. I was actually okay with how the show finished Season 2, but getting to that point proved to be brutal at times.
Omarey’s Pick: The Killing – There were times were The Killing wasn’t such a task to watch but that was not the norm. The show was slow and its setting was dark, grey and melancholy. That made for a difficult watch. Also, I was so angry at the end of the first season and I do not care what Veena Sud says, everyone expected to know who killed Rosie at the end of the first season. Reluctantly I came back because I just needed to see it through. Despite my personal distaste for the way it ended I thought it was well written and produced. It is also hard to watch this show knowing that Rubicon could have still been there in its place…
Most Improved Show
This is for the show which showed the biggest improvement since last season.
Matthew’s Pick: Happy Endings – The first season of Happy Endings was a good season of television that proved to be better than its rather generic premise might have suggested. But Season 2 really stepped things up and it became one of the best shows on TV. It felt like the writers really figured out what to do with their cast of characters including previous weak links Alex and Dave. As I mentioned in a previous blog, their improvements with Alex in particular this season were astounding. Watching the gang’s hijinks each week this past year was fantastic. This was just a consistently hilarious season of television for Happy Endings and a marked improvement over its freshman season.
Omarey’s Pick: Happy Endings – The leap in quality that Happy Endings made in its second season is almost unbelievable. The first season was very funny and exceeded my expectations. Coming into this year I was happy with where they were and didn’t expect them to continue to improve. I was pleasantly surprised with what I got. I received a show that was more confident and clear in its purpose. The actors seem to be even more comfortable with their characters and this led to an increased cast chemistry which is amazing. The writers also seemed to have an even better grasp of the situations that would really work well for this show.
Most Disappointing Show
This category is for the show that let us down the most this past year. We expected better and it disappointed us.
Matthew’s Pick: House of Lies – I actually struggled to pick something for this category. Things I didn’t enjoy much this year, I guess I had expected not to enjoy that much given recent seasons. So I will go with House of Lies. I wasn’t expecting to be blown away by the show, but I expected better than this. And since I loved Kristen Bell as Veronica Mars, I was hoping for something better from her return to TV. The rest of the cast is a bit too talented for something this low in quality too.
Omarey’s Pick: How I Met Your Mother – The thing that makes HIMYM so hard to watch is that I know how good it can be. The decline in quality of the show is really sad. There were some very good episodes this season but the issue is that they were in the minority. I would characterize the season as mediocre as a whole with a few standout episodes. I expect more from this show, with the creative producer/creators/writers, a talented cast and a truly unique premise, this show should continue to be as engaging, fun and high quality as the early seasons. I hope it can get back to how good I know it can be.
Show We Wish Wasn’t Over
This goes to the show we are sad to see go off the air and wish we could spend a bit more time with.
Matthew’s Pick: Chuck – I am generally at peace with Chuck going off the air. We did get more of the show than we probably should have based on the ratings. But it had become one of my favorite shows on the air over the past few years and this past season was its best since the amazing second season of the show, so I will definitely miss it. I really grew to love the characters. Not only the main three of Chuck, Sarah and Casey, but also some of the fantastic side characters like Captain Awesome. The ending didn’t even leave everything where I’d want it, so a bit more of this show wouldn’t have hurt. Plus it was like the fifth series finale they planned for, what’s one more. I will definitely miss Chuck.
Omarey’s Pick: Awake – I loved everything about this show and was so sad that it did not catch on. I told everyone I knew about it and talked about it constantly, driving everyone I knew crazy. I thought that the show’s concept was so unique that it deserved to be successful. I think that the show really developed at the end of the year as well it seemed like the writers got a full grasp of the show at the end, which leads me to believe that the show would have been even better in subsequent seasons. I am glad that NBC allowed it to have a full run so that there was resolution. I am anxiously awaiting Kyle Killen’s next project and I hope that surpasses the success that Awake had.
That’s it for Part 3 of our Summer TV Awards. Feel free to chime in with your own picks in the comments below. And be on the lookout for our final blog in this series soon. Thanks for reading!