In keeping with the t.v. theme, I thought it might be fun to take a trip down memory lane and imagine, not the best moments of your television-viewing history, but the weirdest. I’m referring to those WTF? moments that either cause you to stop watching or to seriously question what the writers were smoking when they came up with “that” idea. I’m not talking studio or network decisions, so no cancellations, only highly suspect creative choices. I’m sure that, off the top of your respective heads, countless come to mind, from baffling leaps in logic to the deaths of beloved medical characters. And I’d love to hear all about them. But first, here is a list of My WTF? T.V. Moments. Some are egregious. Others are bizarre missteps magnified by the fact that they happened on otherwise amazing shows:
DALLAS: Forget that ever happened.
The ninth season of Dallas ended with the character of Pam Ewing walking into the bathroom and discovering her husband Bobby in the shower. But how could this be? Bobby was dead. He’d been killed after being hit by a car the previous season. How could the writers possibly resurrect the beloved character? Easy. They just hit the reset button by making the previous season a dream. The ENTIRE SEASON! 31 episodes! All a dream! They used a narrative device that not even a fourth grader gets away with nowadays. Hey, Dallas fans, that last year of your favorite show was one giant waste of your time. Sorry. Wonder how the dvd’s for that ninth season sold in comparison?
ROSEANNE: Let’s make The Beverly Hillbillies instead!
At the beginning of the show’s ninth season, the Conners win the lottery! 108 million dollars! So what changes for them? Pretty much everything. The lovable blue-collar family many viewers connected with over the years suddenly become the 90’s equivalent of The Beverly Hillbillies. I didn’t watch the show but I know several people who did – and, boy, were they unhappy with the show’s strange, unfunny turn. But the worst was yet to come…
ROSEANNE: Not quite Bobby in the shower but…
In the show’s ninth season series finale, the audience discovers that the whole lottery storyline was fantasy – not a dream but the imaginative writings of Roseanne Conner who reveals the entire show has been a slightly altered version of her real life. Oh, and amiable hubby Dan died of a heart attack back in season 8. Funny stuff.
THE WONDER YEARS: P.S. Dad dies.
Oh, come on! In the series finale, Kevin reveals how things turn out for everyone. His best buddy Paul goes to Harvard. His boyhood crush, Winnie Cooper, ends up studying art history in Paris. His mother becomes a successful business woman. And his dad…well, his dad drops dead of a heart attack two years later. Wait! What?! Look, I’m all for bittersweet endings but this one feels forced because, in a previous episode, Kevin tells the audience how his father would eventually have a grandson of his own. Now, unless Winnie got pregnant in this final episode and gave birth to a son before heading off to Paris, information Kevin elected NOT to make us privy to, then killing dad off is like a giant cheat.
SOUTH PARK – Carman’s real father is…!
South Park fans had to wait an entire hiatus – and then some – to learn the identity of Cartman’s father following the first season cliffhanger. Eager fans tuned in to find out on April 1, 1998…Oh, wait. April 1st? Instead of concluding the storyline, producers Matt Stone and Trey Parker pranked their audience by airing a totally unrelated episode titled “Terrance and Phillip in Not Without My Anus”. Good one, no? No. The audience responded by roundly criticizing the show and firing off some 2000 angry emails to Comedy Central.
24 – Really? No, really? NO, REALLY?
In the show’s first season, Jack Bauer’s wife and daughter are in a car, speeding away from pursuers. Assuming she has lost them, Jack’s wife, Terri, gets out of the car and hurries back up the roadway to make sure. Yes, that’s right. She leaves the car to head back on foot to make sure (!). Satisfied that the coast is clear, she walks back to the car…only to discover she happened to park it too close to the side of a ravine and the car has plummeted – with her daughter inside (!). She is so distraught that she collapses. And wakes up with amnesia (!). Trifecta.
DYNASTY – Duck and cover!
One of the most notorious season finales in television history finds the entire cast of characters gathered for a royal wedding in the fictitious nation of Moldavia when the festivities are interrupted by armed terrorists. The chapel is strafed with bullets and, in the final, lingering shots all of the major characters lie, seemingly dead. It came to be known as The Moldavian Massacre – although, in hindsight, maybe massacre was a bit of a stretch. In the show’s sixth season premiere, we learn that only two minor characters died in the attack thereby confirming what every action movie has already proven – that bad guys are terrible shots.
THE SOPRANOS – Cut to black.
The show’s final sequence unfolds to Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’ with the Soprano family – Tony, Carmella, and AJ – sitting in a diner while, outside, Meadow struggles to park. Tony glances up as a suspicious character walks in and shoots him a look. We cut back to Meadow parking. Tony looks up as someone else walks into the diner. Back to Meadow parking. Then cut back to Tony. Meadow parking. The tension mounts. The suspense is unbearable. And then – we go to BLACK. End of series. In the days following, armchair experts went to great pains to analyze the symbolism of the finale, ferreting out clues from previous episodes to bolster their theory that Tony Soprano actually died when the screen cut to black – which only served to exacerbate the indignation of fans who felt they’d been left hanging. Really? We were expected to piece together a bunch of esoteric clues in order to figure out the ending? As it turned out, no. According to show creator David Chase, Tony wasn’t whacked after all.
FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS – Murder in Dillon!
The first season of Friday Night Lights was incredible on every level – well-written, brilliantly acted, poignant and inspiring – atypical of many shows out there, so I suppose it should come as no surprise that it was struggling in the ratings. But FNL was a critical darling and received a second season pick-up nonetheless. And when it came back, for some reason (Insert your own theory here. I certainly have mine.), the writers elected to work in a a sub-plot involving gosh-shucks geek Landry accidentally killing a would-be rapist. Suddenly, the wonderful character-driven stories were overshadowed by this completely out-of-place narrative that would have been better suited to an episode of Law and Order. Panned by critics, the story was quickly wrapped up – and never referred to again.
MAD MEN – I ate a bad sandwich.
Don’t get me wrong. I think the show is brilliant and well-deserving of all of the accolades it has received, which is why it made this list – on the basis of a dramatic turn at the end of the show’s first season that was, well, in sharp contrast to EVERYTHING ELSE. Don Draper’s carousel speech is some of the best writing ever committed to script. On the other hand, the whole “surprise” that ends this episode seems like something completely out of place for such a grounded show. Secretary Peggy is feeling under the weather and goes to see a doctor. She assumes she “ate a bad sandwich”. But it isn’t a bad sandwich after all. Peggy is pregnant. Pregnant and IN LABOR! Cut to the next scene – where she is presented with her new baby. Now wait a minute! I understand people can be naive and, in some cases, it takes them a while to catch on – but this character was nine months pregnant and didn’t have a clue! I know it happens, but rarely, and when it does it’s to very heavy women who may not have noticed the extra weight gain. It’s as if I was watching a completely different show.
BREAKING BAD – Heads up!
Not even one of my very favorite shows is immune to the occasional questionable call. The second season of the show kicks off with disquieting hints of an atrocity to come, starting with the eye of some stuffed animal floating in a swimming pool and progressing to body bags being lined up on a quiet residential suburban street. It builds and builds over the course of those thirteen episodes, finally paying off in the form of – a mid-air plane crash. Huh? Sure, one can argue that Walter was indirectly responsible for the carnage since he did kill the grieving air traffic controller’s daughter but, all the same, for a show that has built a solid rep for tight scripting, this felt like a bait-and-switch.
Care to chime in? Let’s hear your WTF T.V. Moments.
55 thoughts on “March 3, 2013: WTF? T.V. Moments!”
What, no ending of Newhart causing the whole show to be a dream of Dr. Robert Hartley from the Bob Newhart show? Or how about “These are the Voyages” which not only as an awful end to Enterprise, it rewrote one of Next Generations best episodes while they were at it. Speaking of TNG… Dr. Pulaski.. What was up with her? Why did Crusher take a one year assignment at Starfleet Medical? Or how about Maggie Simpson shooting Mr. Burns? I mean really.. worse than Dallas.. And finally on death Exactly how many times can you kill a character? I wouldn’t be shocked if Dr. Daniel Jackson holds that record. 😉
This one’s easy. The finale of Star Trek Enterprise wasn’t really an episode of Enterprise. It was an episode of Next Generation with flashbacks to Enterprise. The showrunners called it a “valentine to the fans”. Right. If I’d had the receipt I would have returned that little gift.
They knew the show was ending and instead of taking advantage and writing a nice wrap-up episode for Enterprise, they had Riker and Troi wandering around in their own holodeck interacting with the Enterprise crew in different situations, including the totally out of character death of the chief engineer.
I’m not sure I want to know what Bermaga were thinking when they wrote that. It couldn’t have anything good.
The insertion of a Sister for only-child Buffy in Season 5 that, sadly, wasn’t sacrificed once her storyline had been resolved.
Makes me glad I haven’t watched most of those shows. The Wonder Years ending struck me more as bittersweet, so I was okay with it. And
For me, pretty much all of House has me shouting “seriously??? SERIOUSLY???” at the TV. They play so fast and loose with medical procedures that it makes me crazy. For example, his residents/fellows do all of the lab tests and radiology procedures. Doesn’t anyone else work in that hospital????
Castle: The whole Castle/Beckett hook-up at the end of the last season left me with a queasy feeling. Why did the writers set it up that way? I have to agree with those that have said that it really undermined a strong female character. I love Nathan Fillion and still watch the show, but Kate deserved better.
@ensredshirt Hi – nice to see another ENT fan here!
I loved the Newhart finale! I actually fell off the couch laughing when he woke up with Emily.
What percolates to the top of my brain is news coverage of historic tragedies, especially those of the past 15 years…will have to sleep on the “creative decision” types.
Though I am having trouble with Regina’s character developments (cough…backsliding…cough) in “Once Upon a Time”.
Pulling the ol’ main character switch-er-roo on Bewitched. Did they not think we wouldn’t notice? Suddenly Samantha has a new/same husband. As a kid, I was Bewildered. I preferred the nervous twitchy Dick York over the more in control Dick Sargent.
“Downton Abbey”, S1, the flower show episode! The Dowager Lady Grantham (Maggie Smith) has a situation and lines eerily similar to a sub-plot of Mrs. Miniver. She expects to win the judging, as she always has, due to the privileges of rank. At the last minute, she does the right thing and secretly cedes the blue ribbon to a “commoner”.
The Lost finale. We watched all those seasons to find out they were in purgatory the whole time?!?
…and then there was SG-1’s “Heroes, Part 1”. Unfortunately, it wrapped just before a Gatecon, where certain actors raved that it was the series’ best ep to date. I vaguely recall that, during said raving, Frasier’s demise was accidentally revealed. (I was there.)
…and while I’m on SG-1, the failure of supposedly well-trained military personnel to administer rescue breathing and CPR to Hammond in…was it “Prometheus Unbound”? I was corresponding with Don Davis by then and gave both him and Joe a half-faceitious piece of my mind the next day.
@ Tam Dixon – You’re right about Monk, and come to think of it, I really liked his second assistant, Natalie (not so much Sharona, who I found a bit irritating). Natalie just seemed really natural and down to earth to me, making her a more believable character than most
super modelswomen on tv these days.
@ Sparrow and Tam – I’ve never seen the appeal of Nathan Fillion. He’s just not my type, I suppose. I think it’s because he looks like a kid I used to babysit, especially his nose and mouth. Total turnoff!! 😛 I mostly watch the show because my niece got me into it, and then Mr. Das enjoys it (though during every. single. episode. he has to go on and on about Beckett’s hair, and whether she looked better with longer or shorter hair – I swear, he’s such a girl sometimes!).
I really want to make the switch to
Man Candy IslandHawaii 50, but that means recording yet another show that I may never get around to watching. I just don’t have enough time in the day to watch this stuff! How do people do it?? Oh, yeah…most don’t watch up to 14 hours of rugby a week. 😛
Rugby – now that’s my idea of reality tv!!! 😀
There were a LOT of WTF moments in 24–Kim with the cougar, Tony’s resurrection, just a lot of stuff, but we were addicted and it didn’t matter.
FARSCAPE: The last episode–we were expecting John to FINALLY propose to Aeryn Sun only for them to be blasted into Dippin’ Dots in a boat? THE END. Thank the goddess that many years later we got that miniseries.
Galactica 1980: The whole show was a WTF moment for me.
Whoopsies…forgot my WTF Moment.
It involves jumping a shark…Version 1.0. ’nuff said.
My second WTF moment involves me posting my name twice. WTF’s up with that?
@ Narelle – Good to see you!!! Hope all is well! 🙂
RE: Pregnant Peggy. I actually know of a woman who has had three or four kids, never ‘knowing’ she was pregnant. And she’s not fat. I believe it’s some sort of denial thing, a mental condition where a woman cannot accept she is pregnant. Yeah, here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denial_of_pregnancy
In the case of the woman I know, even her husband was unaware that she was pregnant. Don’t ask me how the actual pregnancy is concealed, I suppose it can be done. A friend of mine barely looked pregnant because she was so sick and lost so much weight during her pregnancy she barely had a bump in the end – and she was naturally Twiggy-thin. So it is possible – not all pregnant women look like a giant water balloon about to pop at any moment.
Gil Grissom and Sara Sidle. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WTF was going on in the writers room to make the decision. Bad writers, bad!!!!
Three words: exploding space tumor.
Come on, you totally set yourself up for that.
Okay, how about Enterprise? You mentioned some finales, and I have to say that in the finale of Enterprise, how they killed of Trip was just kind of WTF for me. Also, Dollhouse, which had the same kind of thing with suddenly and anticlimactically killing off a main character for no real purpose. But that was Joss, so it’s less unexpected. And there was an Enterprise novel (which I haven’t read yet) that explains how that was all just a fake, apparently, so maybe I’ll give them a pass (when I read it).
Of those you list, I haven’t actually watched any of those shows. Actually, no, I have watched some of the seasons of 24, and I do agree that bit is pretty silly. But that Sopranos ending, I hadn’t watched that show yet, but when I found out it was ending, I wanted to wait and see how it went, and that would decide if I ever dove in with that show. After finding out about that end, I decided all interest I had in that show was now gone.
Oh, and there was that episode of Voyager where Janeway and Paris de-evolved (or actually super-evolved? I’m not sure; it was weird) into huge lizards and ran off to some planet. When the crew found them, they also found… baby lizards. So, the captain and pilot got turned into lizards, mated, produced offspring, and then when they were rescued, just left the baby lizards on some alien planet. Which is horrible, but I suppose only slightly less awkward than bringing them back to the ship. Actually, I think Voyager had more than its share of WTF moments, most of which were promptly forgotten about and never mentioned again.
The only WTF TV moment that really sticks out in my mind was Season 8 ending of Stargate SG-1. Moebius Parts 1 and 2. Seriously. WTF?
It was so bad that Season 9 started by ignoring that those two episodes ever took place.
When I watch SG-1 on my DVD’s, I skip them too.
FAKE EDIT: Now, looking them up on IMDB, I see that you wrote them. Oops! Haha. You’ll probably never approve this post. 😉
Oh so agree on Dallas. Total WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Enterprise last episode, killing Trip for no reason and having Troi and Riker walk through the NX-01 as a holodeck creation. Just not right.
Very much disagree with BoltBait, Moebius is one of my ALL time favourite Stargate episodes, if not my top. Thought it was fitting for events to repeat in a time travel episode. JackSamantha end up together two times…yippeeeeee!!!
Voyager, Chakotay and Seven WTF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Nope sorry just NO.
Until They put in a WARNING of “DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME OR, ANYWHERE *ELSE*!” before EVERY idiotic “REALITY” Show on **THE LEARNING CHANNEL**, I’m at a loss as to WTF are They attempting to “Teach” People here..??
Can’t wait until Season 9 of HONEY-BOO-BOO where she didn’t know she was pregnant and gives birth to octpiglets right in the middle of texting her “DANCING WITH NOBODIES” vote…
BTW, I think the Big WTF WINNER is “The UNIVERSE”! — *SERIOUSLY*??!! — A ginormous SINKHOLE snatching a Guy IN his BED???!! — That has got to be EVERYONE’S **WORSE** nightmare!!
I hated the end of Quantum Leap. Sam never made it home. Jo
I agree with the others on the Enterprise finale. Another one is the Quantum Leap finally. Really?! The whole evil jumper storyline was weird and I’m still sad Sam never got home. What a downer for such a do good show. I’m afraid SG1 makes the list too with the disappearance of Jack without an explanation. Yes if you happened to be involved online you knew he was transferred to Washington and head of homeworld, but if not you were SOL as the show looked like it pretended he never existed. I’m all for a reboot after the lead of the early years leaves, but you have to explain what he’s doing now. We didn’t find out about Washington until s9 was almost done. And another one was in House. Granted many of the plots were out there, but the ‘I scratched a whole through my skull overnight with my fingernails and now my brain is leaking’ was way too much. Lost… just about everything in the finale. Terrible, non existent pay off.
@ensredshirt – Actually, if you count the clones, Ba’al dies more than Daniel Jackson. We counted.
When it comes to episodic TV, I think there should be a law that every new show goes a minimum of 2 seasons to give it a chance to find it’s feet. I know that television is a business and it’s all about the money, but come on. I am so sick and tired of getting into a show only for it to be cancelled after the first season, or, worse, after just a few episodes. If a network is going to commit to run a series, run the whole friggin’ thing long enough for it to have a chance. That’s my rant for the month.
My WTF moments are for most reality television. Again, it’s about the money and how much everyone can make off of cheap to produce programs. If the reality show teaches something like some reno shows and the occasional real estate show, then, I’m fine with it. But, honestly, Dancing with the “my career is over’ bunch, and the, ‘lets see how much we can terrify/gross out the audience’ shows…no.
Felicty goes time travelling on Felicity. I didn’t even like or watch the show and I was like WTF?
And here’s an obscure one; on the I Dream of Jeannie reunion TV movie, I Still Dream of Jeannie (1991), Tony and Jeannie are married with a son, but at the end Tony is stuck in space and the only way Jeannie can save him is to have him magically brought back to earth by Haji BUT his mind will be wiped and he won’t remember her at all – or their son!
So she agrees and she and the son pack their bags and leave. But then she deliberately bumps into Tony on the street, so they can meet and fall in love all over again. Not only is this really sad because it entirely negates the original series, but how is it going to work WHEN YOU INTRODUCE HIM TO YOUR KID WHO IS ALSO HIS AND NEITHER OF YOU CAN EVER TELL HIM?!
Oh yeah, and there’s also the episode of Hardcastle & McCormick where leprechauns magically rebuild the wrecked Coyote because Mark helped them find their gold. Da hell?
Dallas – Never watched it but even I was aware of the “season as a dream” thing and thought “WTF?”
Although, without Dallas we wouldn’t have had the aforementioned finale of Newhart that, while being a WTF moment, is an awesome WTF moment! One of the greatest moments in TV history.
Roseanne – I must have stopped watching it by that point because I have no recollection of either of those WTF moments. Roseanne had jumped the shark so often by the later episodes I couldn’t cope with it. Great! Now I have the mental image of Roseanne Barr trying to jump over a shark!
A lot of people are talking about the finale of Enterprise. I remember seeing that episode but I don’t remember thinking “WTF?” I actually thought it was an interesting way of showing us what happened to the characters. Sure, Trip got killed off but, to be honest, their jobs are so dangerous the fact that the main characters actually live so long is the real WTF moment.
24 is just one long WTF moment. I don’t remember Jack’s wife getting out of the car and walking back to check if she was being followed. I suspect that by that time my disbelief had been well and truly suspended and it didn’t stand from any other stupid things the characters in that show did.
To be honest, while I might rage at the TV literally shouting “WTF!!!!!!” when a show I love does something stupid, my memory is so bad that in the long run the WTF moments fade and it’s only if I re-watch the show that they come flooding back and I get to rage at my TV all over again.
I think the end of BSG was bizarre with the whole Angels in New York thing. Huh? Really, angels?
Also, possibly the saddest moment in TV ever, the end of Farscape, right after John proposed, bam, blasted to teeny tiny pebbles.
Easy one for me, though it’s a series not too many Americans have seen, Blake’s 7. The show’s finale in season four…(spoiler alert on the odd chance someone wants to see the series)..
The final scene has all of the heroes in a room as their leader, Avon, faces the man he has been hunting all season(the titular hero Blake, now a scarred and menacing appearing character). Avon shoots Blake, then stands frozen as the other characters are shot down one by one by the evil Federation troopers who have appeared. The troopers then circle Avon, who slowly looks up, gives a creepy/eerie smile and….fade to black, with the sound of weapons fire as the credits roll.
1. Revisiting (Friends) plotlines in (How I Met Your Mother.) I loved the show in the early days, now it simply irritates; I don’t care who Ted marries anymore and wish they’d check their scripts before writing petulant characters who quote old Rachel/Emily/Ross dialogue. “Yes, I’ll marry you but I don’t want you to be friends with Robin.” OY! Actually, I turned to another channel at this point, so I have no idea how it played out … probably with a break-up! 😉
2. (Beloved Medical Character) category: Killing Carson Beckett!!! Okay, I do feel a BIT guilty for throwing this in your face since you’ve already covered it today – but I had to include it anyway because it really was (IMO ) a BAD decision!
3.I didn’t mind Dawn in (Buffy)since the Glory storyline played out brilliantly. Kennedy on the other hand!!! Awful character and definitely a WTF moment!
4. Minimising Castiel’s/Misha Collin’s role in Supernatural! Great character and best eye candy I’d seen on TV in a long time. Sera Gamble, what were you thinking? I hear he’s returning as a series regular in the show’s ninth season! I still need to play catch-up with Season 6, 7 and 8.
5. Romantically linking lead characters in ANY show is predictable and lacks creativity. Why is it necessary? I applaud Joss Whedon in Firefly for avoiding any blatant pairing. Zoe and Wash were perfect without resorting to Mal and Zoe predictability.
There are personal exceptions to my own rule: Buffy and Spike, and … there has to be more, just can’t think of any at the moment. 🙂
not about WTF but about to soon ended list: Farscape, Firefly.
and a suggestion tou watch : SUITS
Janet: That had to be THE worst EVER. Chakotay and Seven? In his dorky dreams…
I agree with everybody that hated the Enterprise ending. That was truly a WTF moment. The ending of Lost really pissed me off, too. 😉
@Ponytail, I had no clue there were two Darrens when I was a kid and even now I couldn’t tell them apart to save my life.
@Das, I’ve contacted Carnival about a ticket to Man Candy Island, but they keep asking for an airport code; is it MCI, or IHD for Isla de Hombres Dulces?
I’d put season 3 of Downton the list of WTF entire seasons.
SPOILERS FOR LIFE ON MARS…
I tried to watch Life on Mars but it got bogged down, so I skipped to the end to find that the entire season was Jason O’Mara’s dream as he slept in stasis on his way to Mars. If Harvey Keitel spit in my face it could not have been a more annoying ending.
@Narelle: Welcome back! Good to see you!
I completely agree with you regarding Buffy’s little sister. It bothered me so much thatI stopped watching the show. But I know some people that really like the Dawn episodes. Go figure…
Yeaaaahhhhhh…what Das said….Man Candy Island! woooo hoooo!
The 50 WTF was earlier season when McGarret broke his arm/wrist?
Next day, he has the cast wrapped in plastic with packing tape and he is in a wetsuit in the ocean.
At that time, he lived by himself. SUUUURRREEEE, he put on that neoprene wetsuit – body fitted, I might add – by himself with the broken arm.
I broke my wrist and while in a cast had a hard time putting on jeans – that were NOT body fitted. Try doing the button….aaarrrggghhh.
I love Castle – but agree that the hook up of Beckett and Castle takes something away. But, it was painful to watch either one of them pine when the other one had a “like/love” interest.
Oh….forgot in my “to watch” list:
Doctor Who – kinda out of sight out of mind until season start…sigh.
@Ganymeade – ditto with America’s Funniest Videos.
Some of what they show – is major accidents waiting to happen because some stooopid doofus will try to make a similar video.
Can’t watch it….shudder.
24 – I hated 24 right off the bat. I didn’t like the format at all. If I wanted something that operated in real time, by God, I’d stay in reality. I mean really, what else is TV for but to escape reality?
Lost – How can you forget LOST. After the producers answer questions and say specifically that, it’s not purgatory, they are not all dead, it’s not limbo, we find out that in fact, they have written all the characters into a kind of purgatory, they are all dead, and it’s a kind of limbo. I hate lying liars and the liars that lie about them!
I have to give it to you Joe, you have an amazing memory. I usually just change the channel and it’s all gone. But you forgot LOST. So much anger all over the world. How could any producer let a show go so wrong, when they had such amazing things as tyrannosaurus smoke monster. The hatch. A doorway to another place and time. Regularly dropped crates of food. Oh, lets not forget, an Island that moves. Like a turtle?
Ponytail: Agreed! Loved the old Darin. Dick York could really work up a mad.
Das: Have you watched Firefly? Nathan Fillion won me over. Joss Whedon could write some great lines but Nathan could deliver them with ease: “Mal: You don’t know me, son, so let me explain this to you once: If I ever kill you, you’ll be awake, you’ll be facing me, and you’ll be armed.” Or this line: Mal: Someone ever tries to kill you, you try to kill ’em right back! Wife or no, you are no one’s property to be tossed aside. You got the right same as anyone to live and try to kill people. I loved that show! I didn’t like how they killed a main character in Serenity but other than that, loved it!
Plus, I read his MySpace pages years ago and follow his tweets now. If he has a huge ego, he hides it well. When Castle got a season 2, he was so excited. Apparently, he’d never had a season 2.
Mr. M. do you have any insider knowledge (you can relate) on why Firefly was screwed over? It seemed deliberate sabotage.
As for WTH moments: BSG’s finale was like that for me. I know a few loved it but I’m more of a linear person. The writers did backflips to come up with that ending. Gotta hand to their creativity though.
Medium finale made me mad. It wasn’t a great show but it was entertaining but I hate when the writers kill off a main character in the finale. Let us have a happy ending. I rejected their ending and inserted my own. They have are having a great life and are helping with their first grandchild (a boy). The End.
I watched a little of Roseanne and I think you can blame all the weird stuff on her bipolar disorder. She did a lot of odd crap in her own life around that time too. Did you know Joss Whedon worked on that show for a while? I had the show on while I was working one day and nearly choked when I read his name in the credits. I bet he doesn’t talk about that time in his career much 😉 .
Dallas: You covered that one.
This one wasn’t a show but I miss my old screen saver Johnny Castaway. Johnny didn’t make the later windows editions. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hVgGfKY91Lg
Oh, I remember another WTF moment. It was in one of the Star Trek series. I’ve tried to forget it, so my memory is a bit sketchy. But it involved some weirdo mating ritual involving engorged hands, if I recall correctly. Totally a 😯 … 😕 … 😛 moment.
Shawna – YES. “Threshold” I spent the entire episode trying to figure out WHAT the writers were thinking. It made no sense whatsoever. “Devolving” what the hell is that? Why would we suddenly devolve into lizards? On what basis of physics would that even happen? Egads. :: flail ::
Voyager definitely had more of those moments than they should have. I’m doing a rewatch of the series right now and I keep going, “BUT WHY?!” 😛
Sanctuary. Right around the mid-season hiatus of S.3. They jumped the shark after that episode. They killed off Druitt (Heyerdahl) later that same season but I didn’t realize that’s what happened until an interview came out with Heyerdahl stating that Druitt was dead. Of course, it didn’t help that they’d turned Druitt from creepy Jack the Ripper into the guy who pines after Helen Magnus.
Heroes. The first season was awesome. Save the cheerleader, save the world. And then in the second season the bad guy cracked open the cheerleader’s head and gets her powers. They got too convoluted for their own good which makes me sad because I loved the comic book feel of the show.
Gilmore Girls. Lorelai sleeps with Chris because she doesn’t know how to be an adult and talk openly with her fiance. The show hurt to watch after that. There were rumors the creator (Amy Sherman-Palladino) was trying to sabotage the show and I dismissed them at the time, but given how it tanked, I can’t help but wonder if there wasn’t some truth to it.
I’m sure there are way, way more… LOL
The Lost finale is definitely one of those moments. For all of the last season what we are meant to assume is an alternative reality storyline turns out to be a sort of purgatory. The ending on the Island was perfect but throwing out a bunch of quasi mystical mumbo jumbo for this purgatory felt like a waste of a good series.
Fringe at the end of season 3. In order to stop our universe and an alternate universe from being destroyed one of the main characters is erased from existence, only to eventually be brought back a few episodes into the fourth season. It really annoyed a lot of fans and the writers have admitted since that storyline was a misstep. In fairness the show had plenty of positive WTF moments.
The supreme WTF tv for me:
Heil Honey I’m Home! only episode
St Elsewhere ended with one of the doctors dressed in his civies standing in his living room shaking a snow globe with the hospital inside. So…was it all a dream? Or maybe he was an evil demon who’d trapped the poor sods inside the hospital for all eternity!
And Blake’s 7. With no warning and after 3 years of outsmarting the Federation ALL of the crew were killed in the last five minutes!!! I don’t mind telling you I jumped up and down and raved at the BBC for that one. I can only surmise they ran out of money!
Hate to say it again, Joe, but Wormhole Drive? WTF! 😉
I would have believed it more if Zalenka and McKay had said that they had finally perfected extrapolating the Replicator programming from the computer core and had found how they were able to maximize a ship’s hyperspace capabilities(a la SG1’s “Enemies”) and are able to double even THAT speed because of Atlantis’ advanced engine technology to get back to Earth superfast. That wouldn’t have felt so “out of left field” since there would have been at least some backstory to it.
I know, I know, there were previous conversations between Zelenka and McKay about Wormhole Drive that got cut for time’s sake, but for someone who only gets to watch the episode and none of the BTS/extras type DVD stuff, they’d be hit with that all-too-convenient story mechanic.
I’m sure there are many other WTF moments that I’ve witnessed in my TV past, but this one you have “first-hand” knowledge of, so to speak, so I like pointing it out. 😉
@ Shinyhula & sylvia – To steal Sugar Mountain from Neil Young…and diddle with the lyrics…
Oh, to live on Man Candy Isle
With Chin Ho and ‘Book-em’ Danno Williams,
You can’t be weak-kneed on Man Candy Isle
Though you’re thinking that
McGarrett makes you swoon,
McGarrett makes you swoon…
@ Tam Dixon – Speaking of McGarrett – to me he’s about the most attractive character on tv right now (lol…I don’t even know the actor’s name 😛 ). Good-looking man, and now I AM going to start taping that show. 😀
Anyhoo… I’ve seen Serenity and I liked it very much, but Nathan just doesn’t float my boat. He’s too…smarmy? Simpering? Something like that. I have a very definite ‘type’ I like on the screen. It ranges from the confident yet introspective Mad Max/Eastwood’s Man With No Name types to the overtly superior and moody Wraithy types to the broody and refined Sergeant Hathaway types. Introspective, moody, broody…all musts for me. But it’s more than that. If an actor just doesn’t have the right look for me, I have trouble connecting. Weird? Shallow? I dunno, maybe a bit of both. I just know that there is also a certain look I like, and though that look varies greatly it seems to influence whether or not I can connect with a character. It ranges from Chris Heyerdahl to Johnny Depp to Gus from Psych to Abby from NCIS – all very different, yet to me all very much alike. I think it has to do with face shape – I prefer sharp and distinct features to ill-defined ones (which is why I cannot understand the appeal of pudgy-faced Jeremy Renner..and he’s in EVERYTHING! 😛 ).
Nope…I prefer full lips, thin necks, strong jaws and noses, high cheekbones, strong foreheads. LOL…I think I just described Frankenstein’s monster. 😛
@das: for the record, I don’t find Nathan Fillion swoon-worthy. I find him entertaining as an actor in Castle, but honestly it was watching Firefly that got me hooked on him.
In response to your March 2 entry: I’ve just recently become enthralled with Sons of Anarchy on FX. We just watched the first 4 seasons on Netflix in two weeks. It’s a gritty and powerful family / outlaw biker / crime drama. We couldn’t stop watching. Until we realized that Netflix only had seasons 1-4. I can highly recommend that.
The Lost finale was one of those WTF moments for me. That damn show had me from episode one. And once viewers started peeling off in droves around season 4, I defended it. And I continued to defend it until the series finale. Then I shut the hell up.
I expected more than “SURPRISE! Everyone is dead and goes to Heaven!” Who the F cares? I wanted to know about The Island and its mysteries. As far as I was concerned, The Island was just as important a character (if not more so) than the human characters. And they left me hanging. I’m still pissed. A few networks play reruns of the show and I refuse to watch it. Abrams, Cuse and Lindelof can kiss my ass.
I also just realized that there are many Lost actors who star or starred in Sons of Anarchy: Katey Sagal, Paula Macolmson, Harold Perrineau…
I agree the buildup was less then justified for the payoff. I always took this to be a poke in the eye to everyone’s favourite chemistry teacher because he acts like his actions and his business has no immoral consequences. He never really see’s the users. The crash shows that there are indeed consequences and they reach far beyond the actual user, who some would say has free will. At least free will at the beginning.
If I recall the buildup was quite long for that rather forgettable payoff. I spent a lot of episodes wondering what the hell the charred purple teddy bear was all about. Still looking forward to watching the last episodes though. I want to watch them, but I know it isn’t going to be pretty. It’s probably going to be hard to watch as Walter finishes his transformation to Mister Heisenberg, if he already isn’t already entirely there. Perhaps he is, and we get to see the dismantling of his world.
I think Todd might have a part to play in Heisenberg’s downfall. There are simply so many different ways it can play out. I have a feeling it’s going to be like watching a car wreck. Horrible, but I can’t not watch.
Have at it, Writers. If you don’t fall once in a while, you’re not trying your hardest.
@ Sparrowhawk – You just saved yourself there. I was starting to worry… 😉
And I hear what you’re saying. I’m not saying that I can only watch shows with swoon-worthy characters, but that the characters have to have some sort of appeal. If it’s not their personality, then it’s got to be their looks…and best if it’s a little of both. To tell the truth, my favorite character on Castle is Ryan, followed by Esposito, then Castle’s mum and daughter. And a well-written Ryan/Esposito scene beats any Castle/Beckett scene, hands down.
But I know I’m a tough sell, that’s one reason I watch very little on tv. Rarely do I like an entire cast as I do with NCIS – but it’s only Abby that I ‘love’, though Palmer is really growing on me, too. 🙂 I have watched shows where I’m not really attached to any character, though I usually soon lose interest. That was the case with the CSI shows, I just couldn’t connect to the characters so I dropped the shows. Although I do like the main one now that Ted Danson has joined the team. He amuses me. 🙂 However, I only watch it on occasion as I keep forgetting when it’s on. 😛
That all said, I have been watching Ripper Street. I started watching because I adore Matthew MacFadyen (Spooks/MI-5), but I’ve continued to watch because I’ve actually become quite attached to Sergeant Drake – an actor (Jerome Flynn) who resembles Chris Heyerdahl, and a character who is a bit troubled – that’s two good things going for him! Only 8 episodes, and I think I still have the last two to watch, but I’ve really enjoyed it, despite the gore and whores. 😉
Other than that, yes…I have been watching Freakshow, my one and only ‘reality’ indulgence. I hate the staged bits (they are SOOO obvious), but I do enjoy learning the history of the side shows and some of the people made famous due to their uniqueness. I really wish they’d cut out the fake drama crap and handle this show more like a documentary, but I know that’ll never happen. They need those dramatic breakaways and angsty looks to get people back after the commercial break. *Yawn* Just tell me the history of the two-headed baby already!!! Oh, and yeah…lemme see Morgue lick his sword once more… *wriggle eyebrows*
Das: If that works for you go for but I don’t have to like an actor’s looks to follow him. Nathan was incredible in Firefly. He made me laugh and cry. Sometimes he made me want to slap him upside the head. He made me forget he was acting. Plus, he seems to be a genuinely nice guy on twitter/MySpace.
My WTF would be any SG-1 episode that had Pete Shanihan. I thought with time I would hate the character less but my hubby popped a Season 7 DVD in last night and it just happened to be Chimera……….ugh time did not heal me. And I still hate the totally out of character way Sam was written anytime he was on screen.
The bit where SGU tried to get all BSG serious immediately after BSG. It was such s good premise let down by some copycat writing too soo after BSG.