Happy September, Gigglers! September is my favorite month. September represents the transition from summer to fall, from piña colada to pumpkin spice and most importantly, from TV reruns to new episodes. September means Emmys and sweaters and everything I love in life. One of my favorite September traditions is creating my fall TV calendar. As a kid, I would read my Fall Preview TV Guide cover-to-cover, taking inventory of new shows, marking down their premiere dates and strategizing which programs I could watch live and which I would need to record. I’d program every VCR in the house, carefully labeling the cassettes and praying that my dad wouldn’t accidentally turn something off leaving me never know what happened on The Creek that week. Luckily, modern technology has eased this process, since I can find mostly anything on the internet nowadays. However, fall TV still causes me quite a bit of anxiety. Thus, here are ten reasons why fall TV makes me nervous.
1. So Much TV!
I abide by the motto: “Don’t judge a show by its pilot.” I like to give each show at least three episodes to catch my interest. This means, I need to watch around 20 new shows for at least three weeks along with all the returning shows I watch faithfully. That is so much TV! I realize this is a silly thing to complain about, because I could just not watch this much TV, but TV is my life. So yeah, I need to watch this much TV and it’s kind of overwhelming at times, okay?
2. Calendar Creation and Strategy
Right now I’m in the process of creating my fall schedule and it’s proving to be quite the challenge. For each time slot I need to pick one show to watch live and one show to record, the rest to be watched via internet. Many factors go into these decisions. Which shows are most spoiler-able? Which will I want to have on my hard drive for easy future viewing? Which will go online the quickest and are they streamable to my TV? Sometimes things aren’t so clean-cut, though. For example, CW shows don’t necessarily rank high in the spoiler-able category, yet they usually take a week to go online. So, do I risk Parks and Rec spoilers in order to watch Vampire Diaries in a more timely manner? I don’t know! Somebody get me a time turner so I can just watch everything live.
3. My Love/Hate Relationship With Cable
I love you, cable networks. I think it’s wonderful that you’re creating original programming and broadening the TV landscape. You’ve brought some wonderful shows into my life over the past few years. I’m a huge supporter in all you do. So, why you gotta be so expensive? I want you, but I can’t dish out half my paycheck to Time Warner in order to maintain this relationship. Sometimes you’re generous and make your shows available through Hulu, Netflix or HBOGo, which I appreciate, but I wish you could just be consistent and open up a little. Let me in, cable networks. Let me love you the way you deserve to be loved… within a week of airing and free through my Roku box.
4. Schedule Changes Mess With My Feng Shui
I’m a creature of habit. I like to have a routine and rely on consistency each week. So, when TV networks make scheduling shakeups, it messes with my feng shui. I’m still recovering from the great Grey’s Anatomy move of 2006. Sunday nights are the worst. They symbolize the end of the weekend and the start of another school/work week. Grey’s used to soften that blow and gave me something to look forward to on Sunday. Then, ABC moved it to Thursday in Season 3 and threw my whole week into chaos. This season, NBC has made a similar move and uprooted Parenthood from its place in my heart, Tuesday, and relocated it to Thursday and it doesn’t feel right. All of my Tuesday Parenthood tears will need to be pent up until Thursday and it’s not natural to hold in so much emotion for so long.
5. Thursday Bloody Thursday
Speaking of Thursday, holy crap there is way too much TV on Thursday. I understand the appeal of piling your best shows on Thursday nights: more people watch TV on Thursdays and you can promote them throughout the week. Yet, if your best shows are against every other network’s best shows, you’re not going to get the audience you want and my tiny head is going to explode. I’m only one person, as much as I would like to, I can’t watch four shows simultaneously at 9pm on Thursday. Cut me some slack, guys. Move some of this stuff to Sunday.
6. Getting Attached To Shows That Will Be Cancelled
Do you guys remember a show called Reunion? No? That’s because I was the only one who watched it and it got cancelled after nine episodes. Nine episode which set up a mystery in which one of the characters had been murdered and promised answers that I never received! Every year I naively fall in love with a new show, knowing it’s only a matter of time before my new love is ripped from me by the evil people at Nielsen. It’s heartbreaking and I hate it. RIP Best Friends Forever and Terriers, you will live on forever in my heart.
7. I Stop Watching Something & Then It Becomes a Big Hit
Some shows have a way of getting good the instant I give up on them. I’m looking at you Revenge. I stopped watching Revenge a few episodes into Season One and the next thing I knew, it was everywhere. Everyone was talking about it and it had become must see TV. I was too far behind at that point and had to wait until summer to catch up. If networks were a bit more honest in their promos and said, “Alright, our first few episodes are rocky, but we promise you’re going to want to stick around because ish gets good in episode five,” I would really appreciate it.
8. Great Expectations
I put a lot of pressure on shows to be great. Sometimes it’s because a show is created by a writer I love. Other times it’s because I’m excited about the cast. Every few years there’s a show that I think will be my new Lost and I put all my hopes and dreams on it and… it lets me down. I get an idea in my head of what I want a show to be and when it doesn’t reach those expectations, it’s a bummer. Part of the problem is that I know how hard it is to get a show on the air and how many brilliant shows never make it to TV. So, it’s frustrating to me when that opportunity is squandered. Also, I’m still bitter about some of last season’s cancellations, so if these new shows aren’t amazing I’m going to be mad. If you’re taking the place of Happy Endings you better do the time-slot justice. Sorry, but the bar has been set.
9. Resolving Cliffhangers From Last Season
Within the next few weeks, most of the cliffhangers which left us reeling last spring will be resolved. Couples will be together or they won’t be together. Characters will be dead or alive or in comas from that last-second car accident. We’ll find out what the heck is going on with Liv and her dad and the president and Scott Foley. After months of buildup and theorizing, I’m horribly nervous that things won’t turn out the way I want for my beloved characters in the new season. I’m already dealing with the impending loss of Ann Perkins. I can’t handle any more heartbreak.
10. I Feel Like I’m Cheating on Netflix
I’ve spent my summer building a pretty strong relationship with Netflix. We’ve gone through high highs and low lows. We made it through an entire season of Arrested Development in one day and fifty-four episodes of Breaking Bad in three weeks. Netflix was there for me when broadcast left me high and dry. It feels wrong to just drop her altogether now that fall TV is back. Yet, I don’t have enough room in my life for forty hours of network TV and this West Wing marathon. I suppose I could pick Netflix back up during holiday weeks and hiatus, but the whole thing just makes me feel dirty. I’m sorry, Netflix. You don’t deserve to be treated this way. It’s not you, it’s TV.
Feature image found here.