Because I watch so little television, I tend to become a bit attached to the programs that I do frequent. I’m picky about what I choose to watch on a regular basis, because it is receiving a valuable block of time out of my week. I’m perhaps a bit overly picky, and I do “test drive” new programs on a somewhat regular basis, mostly at Karen’s recommendation. Rarely, though, do any of them make the cut and become something that I’m willing to watch weekly. Some of the ones that do, though, have surprised some of my friends.
A long, long time ago, I wrote about two of my favorites: House, and Bones. The reasons that I found these series irresistible back then held largely true until only a season or two ago (yes, they’ve both been around that long). Interestingly, though, the writers of these programs have taken different approaches over the last two years, to varying results.
This week, I watched the series finale of House. My reaction was that the whole thing was tragic, and I don’t mean because of the characters. I mean this because of inconsistent plot, a script written for sentimentality and shock value, and, basically, because this was a pathetic way to end a series that should have ended two seasons ago. That, you see, is when I stopped watching House. The season which began with him in prison quickly lost me, because the writers were obviously trying to get bigger and more epic with their story ideas, which lost the character development that had made the show so excellent to the winds of exaggerated ideas. Incidentally, I stopped reading most Marvel comics for a very similar reason within the last year.
Bones started to do the same unfortunate spiral when Booth went back to war and the team disbanded, only to get back together quickly at the beginning of the following season, and reveal implausible backstory out of the blue. I had given up hope for Bones, as well, and saw maybe two episodes of that season. Karen, however, stayed with it, and I think that it has began to show improvement this season. In fact, the season finale that I watched tonight left me with my emotional jaw hanging (although I did see it coming), in a way that House used to do but hadn’t in a couple of years.
I’m glad that Bones appears to be in the process of being salvaged by its writers, and I’ll definitely tune in next season to see what happens next. I’m sad that House died a slow and impotent death that was two years overdue.
I’m also sad about a nifty little spinoff program from Bones, the Finder, which started slowly but had a good thing going for it in the end, only to (as I understand it) not be renewed for a second season. I suppose, though, that the huge majority of television viewers aren’t picky about the white noise that fills their evenings, and tend to gravitate toward more action, sex, and crude jokes, leaving series with some depth in plot, humor, and character development cast aside at the whim of the lowest common denominator.
I suppose that sounds sort of elitist. Oh, well. I like quality when I see it. I won’t miss what House had become, but I will miss what the Finder was only beginning to become, while looking forward to the resurrection of Bones.
And there you have my wrap-up of recent season finales.
Photo Attribution: *USB* under Creative Commons