I Miss Downtown Abbey, Why Don't I Miss More Current Shows?
I have really been missing Downton Abbey. I watched Season 1 right before Season 2 premiered. So I basically watched all 16 episodes in a row. Since Mary and Matthew said yes to each other, I find myself wondering what they are up to. I even refresh the PBS online site to see if there are any new episodes. It made me realize something: "Missing" is a very important thing that is...err..missing from television. I used to go crazy in between seasons of Buffy and Battlestar Galactica. I used to check the schedule to see when the next episode of The X-files would be on. Those long months of March and April would feel like forever until Seinfeld came back on. I am not sure that occurs much anymore. I feel like Downton Abbey struck a chord that hasn't been hit since maybe Lost. Is it character that draws us in or the creation of a contained world? The only show that is on live TV that I truly love right now is Community. I do watch Harry's Law but that is more out of dedication to David E Kelley and less out of the greatness of that show. I am watching The Practice again with my wife and in doing so I am seeing how good David E Kelley used to craft shows. I wonder if it is his laziness writing or ours in watching that has created Harry's Law. But watching The Practice just made me miss other old television. Here are some things I really miss.
2. I miss the writing of Aaron Sorkin on television. Money Ball was a great movie and Aaron has written others. But there is something magical about his words week in and week out. I miss that high level of quality on TV.
3. I miss theme songs. I wonder how the 70's and 80's did it with all those quirky fun theme songs? Not all shows can have a Brady Bunch theme, but certainly someone could write something better than we have heard in the last 20 years.
4. I miss the place on television for true creativity. I have been reading a lot of articles and books about writing for television. They all talk about the rules. It is plain and simple that following rules will only create the CBS line up. Glenn Gordon Caron had never done a TV show, so he created Moonlighting. David Lynch never thought about doing television, so he created Twin Peaks and I want that next show now.
5. I miss the characters from Thirtysomething. Some shows could not do a reunion movie. This show could. We want to know where they all are, and I want to know that Michael is now with a new younger, hotter wife.
6. I miss when we all watched together. I know DVR, DVD and internet make it a lot easier to watch TV, but I am not sure it makes it better. I think the way that the world was caught up in Downton Abbey was fun. And because we all watch stuff at a different time, or we can't afford HBO, so we wait, means that communal surprises and experiences won't happen anymore. That makes me old fashioned, but I guess that is what missing is. It's nostalgia.
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