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Because I Said So: New Rules for TV


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#31

smittykins

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 8:40 PM

New Rule: When characters are showing in bed (either during lovemaking or just after), the women must not wear a bra/nightie.


And while we're at it, let's get rid of the L-shaped bedsheet(you know, the one that goes up to a woman's neck but only the man's waist).
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#32

ladyDonna

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 9:15 PM

Shelwood:

New Rule: No more male leads named Jack. In fact, no more characters, lead, secondary, tertiary, male or female, named Jack at all for a few decades. Also, not Jake or Nick or Mac, either. (You aren't fooling us. You wanted to use Jack.)

Heh, no fair, you stole the Rule I was going to use!
O.K., so here's a corollary.
New Rule: no more female leads named Annie, Meg, or Kate. Especially if you're trying to indicate that said character is cute and spunky. Find a new name!
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#33

Lucy

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 9:47 PM

Heh, I was totally going to do the Jack Rule, too!

New Rule: On reality shows, when making an important announcement, there shall be no more artificially elongated pauses in order to "build" "suspense".
Judge: And the winner of this challenge is...
*shot of Joe's face*
*shot of Mary's face*
*shot of Sally's face*
*music goes thump, thump
*continents drift*
Judge: ...Mary!

Other New Rule: Also on reality shows, there will be no more voiceovers telling us what we just saw.

Judge: Contestants, in this challenge you must build a working particle accelerator using only items found in your mom's purse.

Mary's VO: So the judges come in and told us we had to build a working particle accelerator using only items found in our mom's purse.
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#34

almostlunchtime

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 9:54 PM

New rule: Co-workers do not have to fall in love, they can find a boyfriend/girlfriend outside of the workplace


Heck yeah!

New rule, reality show-specific: If any contestant uses the phrase, "I'm not here to make friends," said contestant shall be promptly eliminated/voted off/kicked out of the house/kicked off the island/given the ol' size nines and fed to hungry crocodiles. Maybe the last part only if the contestant in question is really aggravating.

New rule, for promos: Quit it with the plinky-plinky music whenever something BIG is scheduled to commence between the main couple or would-be couple. Quit making this couple or non-couple the focus of the promo. Quit insulting our capacities as TV-watchers by assuming we watch shows only for the 'ships. I guess that was three rules so feel free to make them addendums or whatever the term is.
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#35

RidingTeach

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 10:00 PM

What an awesome thread--I wanna play too!

New rule: Kids on tv are not be allowed to be "sassy", "spunky", "precocious", or whatever the hell other euphamism they're using now that is just code for "obnoxious back-talking little smartass". If a real child would get smacked upside the head for said behavior, so must the tv child.

On screen.
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#36

StaceyRosie

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 10:04 PM

New rule: Kids on tv are not be allowed to be "sassy", "spunky", "precocious", or whatever the hell other euphamism they're using now that is just code for "obnoxious back-talking little smartass". If a real child would get smacked upside the head for said behavior, so must the tv child.

On screen.


Here! Here!
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#37

Detective

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 10:15 PM

And henceforth, cops looking forward to retiring from their gritty urban police force (anywhere on God's green earth) to live in the country (again, anywhere on God's green earth) and hang out with their wives and fish with their buddies will no longer be killed in tragic on the job incidents because they took a shift as a "favor" for a buddy who is a chronic fuck up!
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#38

MaggieElizabeth

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Posted Nov 9, 2006 @ 10:30 PM

Love this thread!

Here's a Rule for you:
No matter how "hot" they are, no man or woman are allowed to hook up on a TV show unless they actually have something in common. In order to hook up, the couple must share some common interest or activity they can talk about (besides sex) and show genuine enjoyment of each other's company outside the bedroom. This whole "opposites attract" thing? Old, old, old! Opposites may attract, but it's likeness that retains.

Another one: unless the writers would know how to write the couple as a couple, they must never bother to create sparkage between two characters. This whole "if they get together, the show will Jump the Shark" thing is also very old. TV writers must learn how to write characters in a committed relationship!

Furthermore: phony triangles must not be created with the sole purpose of forestalling a couple's getting together. I'm tempted to agree with the "no more triangles, EVER" rule, but occasionally a triangle can be halfway interesting, if all three characters are treated sympathetically and allowed to be complex (e.g. Lorelai/Luke/Rachel from GG S1). But this particular rule, I name the "Iris Rule" -- a reference to a character who should never have existed, since her name might as well have been Stumbling Block to Romance (she having no purpose but this).

And finally -- stupidity, ignorance, lack of curiosity, and anti-bookishness are NOT attractive qualities! In men or in women! Therefore, writers must cease any and all attempts to write stupid guys (e.g. Joey on Friends) and stupid girls (e.g. Mallory on Family Ties) as cute, funny, and endearing. Stupid characters must be depicted as they really are: annoying!
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#39

Laurie

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 1:11 AM

New Rule: No high-fives, ever.


Exemption: The Todd.
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#40

dunvegan948

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 1:25 AM

New rule: Lightning may strike twice in the same place. Helicopters may not.

New rule: Most doctors should have some idea of how conception happens and how to avoid it. Repeated unplanned pregnancies in the same hospital department must stop now.

New rule: No more stunt casting on reality shows.
Corollary: No more Rob and Amber on any reality shows.
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#41

Irish Wolf

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 2:10 AM

New rule: No more stunt casting on reality shows.
Corollary: No more Rob and Amber on any reality shows.

2nd Corollary: Or any scripted shows.

3rd Corollary: Or anything pretending to be a "newsmagazine". Please, just flush these famewhores and get on to the next set - they had their fifteen minutes already!
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#42

Bessie Mae

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 3:15 AM

This whole "if they get together, the show will Jump the Shark" thing is also very old. TV writers must learn how to write characters in a committed relationship!


You stole my rule!

New related Rule: Shows that start off about one thing will not turn into being solely about getting the main character finally shipped with the man/woman who's been waiting for years for them/they've waited for years for. That will be a small part of the show and the family drama or workplace drama will remain that at its core.
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#43

20bored

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 4:34 AM

New rule: Kids on tv are not be allowed to be "sassy", "spunky", "precocious", or whatever the hell other euphamism they're using now that is just code for "obnoxious back-talking little smartass". If a real child would get smacked upside the head for said behavior, so must the tv child.

On screen.


Word, word, word. If this was an actual rule, shiiiit, that little heifer on Everybody Ha-ates Chris would be in direct violation of it.
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#44

naepTV

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 6:03 AM

New Rule:

Any cable channel claiming to show "Classic" TV sitcoms must avoid the following shows: The Cosby Show, Roseanne, Fresh Prince, Three's Company, etc. All shows must have been off the air for at least 10 years before becoming eligible to Classic status.

Sub-rule: Said channels must limit the use of "Marathon" nights (whereby only one sitcom is shown the entire night) to no more than once every other week.

Attention TVLand and Nick-at-Nite.......I'm lookin' at you.
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#45

MaggieElizabeth

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 6:58 AM

Another syndication rule:

In deference to the classic status of a show like The Twilight Zone (original) or M*A*S*H*, these shows must be aired in their original entirety, with commercials taking up no more air time than they did during the show's original run. "Syndication edits" must come to an immediate end. Commercials can take up our time as much as they please during current shows (where the air time is tailored to fit current commercial needs/wants), but the Almighty Advertising God will not be given the power to trim moving, important, or interesting scenes from classic television episodes!

Oh, another rule while I'm here:
No British animated show must retain its original voice cast, and never, never, never be re-dubbed with asinine American celebrity voices.

And "dull-voiced" actresses like Neve Campbell and Claire Danes will never again be hired to do voice work. Only performers with distinctive voices allowed!
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#46

Lucy

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 7:39 AM

New Rule: In those paper towel/spray cleaner commercials in which an adorable little kid spills his drink all over the floor, there will no longer be a scene in which the mom wipes up her kid's mess with a resigned smile. Instead, we will see the kid using the towels/spray/whatever to clean up his OWN DAMN MESS while mom looks on approvingly.

I swear, if I ever saw that commercial, I would run out and buy a gross of that product, right now.
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#47

Frecklepup

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 8:27 AM

Great new rules everyone! This one is a tough one though:

This whole "if they get together, the show will Jump the Shark" thing is also very old. TV writers must learn how to write characters in a committed relationship!



I don't think it can be done and keep audience interest in the romance. It's been a problem forever. I read in the 50's movie writers used to call romantic movies "DF movies" (DF stands for delayed fuck). They had to keep the lovers apart for as long as possible to satisfy the audience.

Now that I think about it, the keeping of lovers apart is a kind of foreplay between author and audience. Once the desire is satisfied, the audience leaves. So, its really the audience, not the writers, who are committment phobic.

And, in this millenium, The Office has perfected the DF. What other possible reason could the writers have for keeping Jim and Pam apart?
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#48

emace

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 9:49 AM

New rule: Working moms will be shown more realistically. Instead of making a gourmet breakfast for their famliies on weekdays, they will be shown handing them a Pop Tart and a piece of cold pizza.

New rule: Men will not be shown as automatic bozos when it comes to doing chores inside. Sometimes they will be shown preparing a meal for the kids, vacuuming or doing laundry without the washing machine breaking down and belching suds everywhere.

New rule: On the pop culture commentary shows on VH1, the participants must be divided equally by gender. No more four males being quippy to every one woman.

Edited by emace, Nov 10, 2006 @ 9:51 AM.

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#49

Eliot

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:02 AM

New Rule: Revolting physical conditions are not to be represented by prancing animated characters in television commercials. This applies to toenail fungus and balls of snot in particular.
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#50

burnt sushi

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:13 AM

Sorry, Cobalt Stargazer already covered this one!

Edited by burnt sushi, Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:29 AM.

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#51

BenPanced

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:19 AM

Other New Rule: Also on reality shows, there will be no more voiceovers telling us what we just saw.

Judge: Contestants, in this challenge you must build a working particle accelerator using only items found in your mom's purse.

Mary's VO: So the judges come in and told us we had to build a working particle accelerator using only items found in our mom's purse.

Corollary: The bulk of a thirty-minute reality show cannot be made up of recaps from previous episodes to remind us of the OMG! DRAMA! that's been building up between two of the "contestants"/participants (The Surreal Life, I'm lookin' at you).

New rule: Working moms will be shown more realistically. Instead of making a gourmet breakfast for their famliies on weekdays, they will be shown handing them a Pop Tart and a piece of cold pizza.

A favorite online comic had "You've got your choice of breakfast: Pop Tarts or cook your own goddamned eggs."

What, no cans of warm, flat Pepsi? I'm callin' CPS.

Edited by BenPanced, Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:22 AM.

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#52

Sweetxcape

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:24 AM

New rule: No more shows where the core of the show is an overweight, unattractive, unpleasant slob of a man with a very attractive, thin, younger female who worships her yucky spouse. (King of Queens anyone?? Come on.) Or, if this crap has to keep popping up, how about a gender reversal of those roles?


Yes that rule was mentioned a couple of pages ago, and I think it should be the golden rule, lol - Especially since the stereotype permeates through sitcoms, dramas, even cartoon shows, for goodness sakes.

Rule: No more talk shows from former TV stars, athletes, singers, etc. Just because you had your fifteen minutes in your respective area of the industry, this does not mean you are interesting/witty enough to carry your own show.

Edited by Sweetxcape, Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:25 AM.

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#53

fposte

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:25 AM

New rule: it's not inherently funny for an old person to talk about being sexually active--or, for that matter, physically active in general. Yes, this means writers must write an actual joke instead.

New rule: we now have a sufficiency of televised vomiting. No new vomiting will be accepted.

Edited by fposte, Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:25 AM.

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#54

burnt sushi

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:27 AM

n/m, mistake!

Edited by burnt sushi, Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:29 AM.

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#55

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:29 AM

New Rule: A song may be used only twice in one season. Once it has been used twice, it may not be used again for at least twelve months.

New Rule: Those who have a cooking/food show may have one, and only one, cooking/food show.

New Rule: All new cooking/food shows much feature a foreign cuisine (besides Italian) in which the host/cook is an expert in that cuisine.
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#56

MaggieElizabeth

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 10:32 AM

Frecklepup: For guidance on what to do with a couple once they hook up, TV writers could examine some of the successful portrayals of married couples on TV. Believe it or not, there have been a few.

Will and Helen Girardi on Joan of Arcadia spring to mind; I actually enjoyed watching Will/Helen far more than Joan/Adam or even Luke/Grace. It was Will who spoke the most romantic line I've ever heard on TV, leaving those hot loverboys like Angel in the shade:
Helen: Do you believe in Hell?
Will: I believe in a place you aren't.
Yet Will and Helen had their problems. They were interesting to watch because the tension between them were the kind that inevitably spring from the efforts of two separate personalities (albeit compatible ones) to work and live together. There is some drama in this, TV writers, if you'd learn how to find it.

Patch and Rose on Everwood also offer a good example.

Also worth considering: once Lily and Rick got married, why didn't Once and Again jump the shark? That show was quality viewing right up to the hour of its cancellation. How did they manage to keep the spark after the major couple hooked up? (Answer: there were enough other interesting things going on in the show, and also, the writers knew how to hold the interest in Lily and Rick as a couple. It can be done, people. It can be done.)
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#57

20bored

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 11:54 AM

New Rule: Leave Rachel Ray alone. She's done nothing to you, she hasn't eaten your baby, and all she wants to do is cook and be perky. If you can't stand her, that's cool. But leave her be. Same goes for Kellie Pickler.
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#58

GeoBQn

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 12:48 PM

New Rule: In pop culture countdown shows to determine "The Greatest/Worst [insert pop culture noun here] of All Time/Ever," all decades must be represented. No more clumps of entries from one decade or lack of entries before or after a certain year (like the AFI lists that have half the greatest movies coming from the 30's and none from the 80's and 90's). There were some good movies made after 1939, hot hotties existed before Eva Longoria, and the 50's and 60's produced some great pop songs (as well as a few clunkers).
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#59

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 2:40 PM

New rule: American writers and actors are not allowed to use British swearwords unless they really know what they're doing.

I'm looking at you Whedon/Marsters/Denisof. And the writers on the Simpsons.
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#60

emace

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Posted Nov 10, 2006 @ 3:05 PM

Former child stars are only permitted to appear on two shows tops to complain about how tough it was to be a child star. Then they must go away for good.

On the VH1 shows, participants must think of something more clever to say about a pop culture phenomenon than, "That's gay!"

If participants have a crappy singing voice, then they are NOT allowed to sing along with whatever song is being discussed.

Participants are only allowed to appear two or three times tops per hour, particularly Hal Sparks and Mo Rocca.

Participants may not discuss a pop culture topic that was way before their time. Hanson and Raven Symone, I'm looking at you.

Any show that uses pop up graphics to advertise other shows will be immediately yanked off the air.
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