Why is Fall TV so bad this year?

Where are all of the killer Fall TV shows, new and returning? A shortened Boardwalk Empire final season, and some great eps of The Walking Dead (E1-3) are just about all we have. Everything else is subjectively just okay/meh/bad, or let's just call them "not great". AHS Freakshow is okay, The Affair - meh/whatever, Homeland/Sons of Anarchy - atrociously bad. Even The Good Wife, which was fantastic last season, is batting slightly 'above average' on it's own scale. We were drowning in great TV this summer, now we've pockets of 'meh'. I can't recall a Fall TV season that was this soft in the last decade. What happened?


  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    Winter / Spring is the new Fall. I can't comment on most of those shows because the only ones I'm currently watching are TWD and Arrow. (I couldn't take any more of SOA) Fall seems to be glutted with network shows, both new and returning, so maybe producers wait until late winter / spring to launch the good stuff? Starting in a couple of months, I'll be watching Justified, The Americans, Hannibal, Better Call Saul, The Returned, Mad Men, Game of Thrones, Rectify...and probably House of Cards and Orange is the New Black. It reminds me of how the film studios release their Oscar contenders all around the same time. At least Fall of 2015 will have True Detective and Fargo.
  • FreddyFreddy Denton, Texas
    edited November 2014
    You're a strong man for being able to take Sons of Anarchy for as long as you have. Talk about a show that never understood the concept of subtlety or subtext.
  • JohnnieDarkJohnnieDark South Florida
    Yeah i'm basically sticking with SoA for same reasons True Blood fans stuck with their show. 7 year of investment.
  • FlukesFlukes Calgary, Canada
    Same here. Too much time invested to not at least find out what happens. If I didn't know this was the last season, I'd probably be out.
  • JohnnieDarkJohnnieDark South Florida
    Oh I definitely would've been out it this wasn't the final season
  • The lack of fall shows had not been noticed as much in my house probably because we also watch UK shows that are ending their season as we speak. I feel the lack in quality US shows at this time might be a symptom of shorter season runs, lack of Good replacements for finished shows and award season.
  • The new shows I've continued watching are Fox's Gracepoint (which I know most people watched as UK's "Broadchurch," but I haven't - no spoilers!) and Forever on ABC. I was not expecting to Forever, but the mix of history/drama/suspense/dash of comedy has reeled me in. I have really started to like Gotham also, it should really be The Penguin Show but the Jim Gordon/Harvey Bullock team also has great chemistry.
  • Yeah, not a ton this season after Boardwalk finished up. I've been keeping occupied with HBO shows like Last Week Tonight and Real Time with Bill Maher but LWT just ended season 1 and I think I'm over Bill Maher. I think I'm happy taking a breather before January. Shit's going to get real next year.
  • A_Ron_HubbardA_Ron_Hubbard Cincinnati, OH
    I'm looking forward to watching Sherlock and maybe Luther in December. I also really want to finish season 3 of Deadwood. I have so much TV to catch up on. There's always the Sopranos lurking, too. I really dug Olive Kitteridge, but that shit is like caviar, most definitely not to everyone's taste.
  • Sherlock is definitely where you should start (because it's damn good). Then S3 of Deadwood (it's not as good as S1 or S2, but still amazing). Then Sopranos (cause you need to at some point) or Luther (to scratch your Wire/Idis itch). I liked S1 of Luther more than later seasons, but it's solid. All good choices.
  • For quality and recency, I might add to your list: The Honourable Woman, Rectify, Happy Valley, Peaky Blinders. Also, if you haven't seen it, the BBC's Black Mirror is amazing.
  • I saw the first season of Rectify. Solid shows. Peaky Blinders.... such a horrible name for a show but I get it, it's british. Orphan Black is another one I'd like to catch up on. I hear good things, at least about Tatiana Maslany's performance.
  • I'm wishy-washy on Orphan Black - i'd put it in solid C, maybe B- category. I'm def diggin what Maslany's laying down. Too bad the rest of the show/cast isn't really up to par.
  • DeeDee Adelaide
    Ugh, I am hanging out for the return of The Returned. Damn it Frenchies, get a move on!

    Jan/Feb and then April to June seems to be when the really good prestige stuff comes out these days, aside from a few like Boardwalk, The Walking Dead, etc. All the fall returns aside from that are just the junk sitcoms and 'mum' cop shows. Not that I'm judging - I do watch a lot of those as well.
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    Last I heard The Returned / Les Revenants is set for "late 2015." The American adaptation has already wrapped season 1 and will likely premiere in the spring.

    I also think Orphan Black is just okay. Maslany is incredibly talented, but none of the characters, even hers, feel real, and it has that breakneck pacing and bonkers plotting that's just not for me.

    I would love to check out Black Mirror -- Jon Hamm is going to be in the Christmas special -- but the only way for Americans to (legally) see it is via DirecTV. Hopefully they will work out the copyright and licensing issues and license a proper Region 1 DVD or streaming deal soon.
  • DeeDee Adelaide
    I didn't like much of Black Mirror - so much of Charlie Brooker's irritatingly condescending smugness oozes through it. The only one I thought was really good was White Bear, mainly because it had a twist that I genuinely didn't see coming.
  • JaimieTJaimieT Atlanta, GA
    So excited for The Returned. Whenever I think of that show, I say "Je ne sais pas" to myself. It's not only an excellent show, it's like Rosetta Stone!

    The #1 show I'm looking forward to though? Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell on the BBC. It's my favorite book of all time so naturally I was over the moon when the fucking BBC started doing a fucking MINISERIES.
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell is going to be a miniseries?!

    I just did a quick google, and it's estimated to premiere Jan. 2015. Thanks for the heads up!
  • FlashGordonFlashGordon Leeds, UK
    edited November 2014
    O man, i started a thread that would basically have just fit into this discussion, i agree though with Boardwalk finished & after the walking dead's over, i'm going to have no new decent TV no.

    @JaimieT‌ are you mad that is only a miniseries or excited that they're doing it at all?
  • JaimieTJaimieT Atlanta, GA
    @FlashGordon - I'm excited it's not just a movie. A miniseries will be the perfect length, I think.

    @pavlovsbell‌ - Hurray, a fellow fan!
  • JaimieTJaimieT Atlanta, GA
    @pavlovsbell‌ - Oh yeah. There's even a clip from the show if you muck around on the BBC's website to find it. The link to it is buried in the BBC 2015 trailer narrated by Bennedict Cumberbatch. You have to actually watch the silly thing to get the link, or I'd link it. I've been following the casting too. The man playing The Gentleman with the Thistle-Down Hair is fantastic.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    I don't expect much from TV but I was hooked on The Strain (guilty pleasure) during the summer and now enjoy the dark comic booky Gotham with a focus on the corrupt city and how the villains and world of Batman came into being. It's a prequel. This holiday season I plan on checking out some of your recommendations. I tried the Flash but it just didn't grab me.
  • pavlovsbellpavlovsbell Brooklyn, NY
    @JaimieT, thanks, I'll look for that.

    @Elisa, I gave up on The Flash but tuned in last week and thought it had improved. I really enjoyed the latest episode (107). It was comic book-y without the cheesy teen-CW feel of the earlier episodes.
  • ElisaElisa Los Angeles
    Hmm okay maybe the pilot just sucked. Let me try it again.
  • Mike SnowMike Snow Portland, ME

    Yeah i'm basically sticking with SoA for same reasons True Blood fans stuck with their show. 7 year of investment.

    Same with me. The last two seasons of SoA went really downhill. At least the last couple episodes haven't been bad cause there's an end in sight.
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