Monday, December 14, 2015

Jumping the Shark

R.a.n.t. of month December 2015
Perhaps you've heard this expression before. For those of you unfamiliar with it, you've likely never watched the TV show Happy Days. I'll let Urban Dictionary explain.

"Jump the Shark - A term to describe a moment when something that was once great has reached a point where it will now decline in quality and popularity. Origin of this phrase comes from a Happy Days episode where the Fonz jumped a shark on waterskis. Thus was labelled the lowest point of the show."

Even if you are unfamiliar with the term, you are certainly familiar with the feeling. Truly, nothing good lasts forever. As you may have guessed, this term refers specifically to TV shows. Over the years, I've watched many of my favourite shows 'Jump the Shark'.

The Office did so the moment Michael Scott left. Oh, there were some good episodes after his departure, but it was never the same. The magic was gone.

Did you ever watch Lost? Did you ever try to figure out what was going on? For my friend and I, that was probably the best part of the show. We loved to try and decipher the clues. For me, the show jumped the shark with the repeated promises from Lindelof & Cuse that what we might think was going on, was NOT going on. Only to find out that was exactly what was going on.

The most recent shark jumping for me came about a month ago. You see I had a favourite TV show, but after I got rid of cable, I lost track of the series. But I was finally able to track down the last two seasons and thought I would be enjoying my favourite TV show once gain for a few months. The show was the Mentalist, and the lead Character not only had his showdown with his nemesis early on in the season, but suddenly the entire show was taken in a new direction. Instead of working for the CBI, Patrick, Lisbon and Cho were suddenly working for the FBI on mediocre cases at best. Season six introduced two new characters to replace Van Pelt and Rigsby. From my understanding they were replaced, only to shake up the show a bit. When the season ended, one of the new cast members left the show to be replaced by another, who unsurprisingly, didn't last the entire final season. It was a true case of shark jumping. One of my favourite shows was now gone, in more ways than one.

Well, at least there is still Doctor Who, which I feel is still going strong 50 years plus on TV. But then again, one day they will probably recast the Doctor as a female. That will not be a happy day in my house. Well, it could be worse. They could rewrite a favourite character and change the race, the gender and make them a killer robot. Wait, wasn't this already done once before? OH yea, the Battlestar Galactica re-imaging. I never could get into that one.

Additional Questions:
Do you have a favourite show that has 'Jumped the Shark'?
Do you agree or disagree with any of my thoughts above?
Besides TV, what do you feel has 'Jumped the Shark?'

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  1. A female Dr. Who is coming...
    CSI hit that moment when Petersen left.

    1. Yes, I'm certain there is going to be a female Doctor at one point. Probably why they decided to do something similar already.

  2. I am SO with you on The Office. I just rewatched all the early seasons and couldn't believe how great the show was. I watched it from the first episode as it aired, but rewatching it just made me realize that it was one of those shows where all of the right actors, writers, etc. came together and made magic. And yeah, Steve Carell WAS that show.

    1. There were a few good shows after he left, but essentially it ended when he left.

  3. I got out of The Mentalist as well. I had watched the first few seasons but not the last several. I tried and found it lacking.

    A jump the shark moment foe TV with me recently was the 2nd season of How to Get Away with Murder. I liked he first one but stopped watching the second one after a few episodes.

    1. Mentalist lost it's charm after they decided to do something different with it. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

  4. Hi Jeffrey - I understand the concept .. but never good hooked into a show ... but can understand - somethings just fade out. Dr Who - is an interesting one ... Bond too perhaps - that falls into the latter category ...

    I could rant, but won't !!! Cheers and enjoy whatever is going on - Hilary

    1. I know you won't RANT Hilary. Though I do feel ranting can be good from time to time.

  5. I don't watch the office or the mentalist.. Never got much into either of those. I don't see how a female doctor would even make sense. Just. :/

    I think the end of Sons of Anarchy sucked. But that was just the last episode, would that be considered jumping the shark? I'll have to think on others. I've seen a lot of shows that ended up sucking.

    1. I think jumping the shark implies more toward when a show continues to run, long past it's prime.
      And no, I don't think a female Doctor would make sense. But they seem to be implying that is where the show is headed. In fact they've already tested the waters so to speak. I just hope while they check the waters they look for sharks.