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3 TV Shows You’ll Love Not Watching

You don't have to watch these shows; the recaps are rewarding enough

Hannah Sternberg


May 23, 2013 - 10:00 am
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I am hopelessly addicted to TV show recaps. I’ll read them for shows I’ve never watched and have no intention of watching. I read them to keep up with what’s moving in pop culture, and for the curiosity of seeing how many ways a single hour of television can be interpreted — humorously, solemnly as a cultural commentary, or passionately by people who care about the characters as deeply as if they were real people.

It speaks to the power of these programs that viewers become so immersed they start to feel as though they know the characters better than the director, the writers, or even the actors. Writing up a weekly criticism of a bad show is a boring waste of time. The fact that a show is painstakingly critiqued every week is, ironically enough, proof that it must be pretty good; or at least, significant in some way (good or bad).

These are my favorite shows not to watch. Okay, I cheated — I do watch some of them, but I tend to read the recaps before I get around to seeing the latest episodes.

3. Mad Men

I stopped watching Mad Men after marathoning the third season left me in a blue funk for two weeks. But the recaps didn’t end there. The virtue of Mad Men recaps is getting all the drama and cultural commentary with less than half the depression. Since it sounds like the show is starting up the long ramp toward jumping the shark, I don’t regret tuning out — but I do enjoy checking in, if simply to answer the question, “How much more miserable can they all get?”

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All Comments   (6)
All Comments   (6)
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"...the long ramp toward jumping the shark..."

The shark has been jumpeth! The setup with Sally catching her father in the act of coitus is as unlikely as one can get in a drama. Surely, a perfect storm of imperfect screenwriting - so soapoperish, it was humerous.
43 weeks ago
43 weeks ago Link To Comment
Your word for the characters in "Girls" says it all: "Insufferable." That's what I find most TV characters to be. "Mad Men"? I don't know how ANYONE can sit through that much arrogance and posturing. I started out watching "Gray's Anatomy" with my wife. It didn't take long to discover it's not a medical show. She still watches it. I can't even bear to walk through the room when it's on. The characters are so full of themselves, and the continual sanctimoniousness over being lesbians! URG!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Virtually all shows would count these days, sadly including most science and history programming. Both such shows spend as much time recapping all that came before after each commercial break it is easy to lose interest. Then a lot of the military shows now instead of using blanks in the guns edit cheap CGI effects on the muzzles of the guns and the actors even forget to shake the guns or do so at the wrong times. Pitiful.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
What show would I rather read about than watch? That's easy, The View, The O'Reilly Factor and the current season of Two and a Half Men.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ooh, I'm good then, since I don't watch any of them to begin with.

Just as well...I can't afford to keep replacing flat screens after shooting holes in them.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
Game of Thrones as a Seinfeld Sitcom - Episode #1

Game of Thrones as a Seinfeld Sitcom - Episode #2

Game of Thrones as a Seinfeld Sitcom - Episode #3
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
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